Rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings MLB salaries for that day. The ordering is not based on highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by value of each pitcher.
Cream of the Crop
Chris Archer vs. New York Mets ($12,300) – Archer for me, is a clear cut winner as the favorite pitcher for today. He gets a Mets team that is certainly hitting better as of late, buttttt not THAT great. Over the last two weeks, the Mets have the second highest K% in the league at 23.3% and 16th in wOBA at .324. Having to face Archer is not going to be an easy task, as his 10.9 K/9 will play a major factor in this game I’m sure. He isn’t the most expensive pitcher on the day, which is always a plus, as that honor belongs to Max Scherzer today. You’ll get a $900 discount from rostering Archer. With a K:BB of 27:3 in his last three starts, I think it’s safe to say, Archer is your best bet.
Corey Kluber vs. Minnesota Twins ($10,600) – Kluber has a nice matchup against the Twins today. Coming into today with a $10,600 price tag, it feels quite fair to pay that. Over the past month, the Twins have been striking out quite a bit. At a K% of 22.6 and over the past two weeks, 23.3%, which is the second highest in the league, this bodes quite well for Kluber. Overall, the Twins are 21st in the league in hitting and 19th in OPS. While it may seem that Kluber has been inconsistent this season, a matchup like this one today, I feel as though he should produce a good one.
Shelby Miller vs. Miami Marlins ($8800) – We have a lot to like in this matchup. When you think of Shelby Miller, you aren’t exactly thinking of power pitcher. However, in his start against the Marlins, he might look like one. Without Giancarlo Stanton, this team really isn’t productive. Over their last 30 days, they have the lowest ISO in the league .099. Guys, .099. In comparison, the higest, which belongs to the Rockies during that span is .199. Get it? Miller has a decent K/9 of 7.3, which might be a bit tough to reach as the Marlins are fairly difficult to strike out. With a wOBA of .284 of the past month, it’s hard to see Miller having a difficult start. At the price of just $8800, it will be tough to pass him up.
Middle of the Pack
John Lackey vs. Milwaukee Brewers ($8900) – It’s not the most ideal matchup I’ve ever seen, but the price you’ll have to pay makes it a bit more enticing. Lackey has been solid this season, coming in with a 2.85 ERA to go with a 1.19 WHIP and a K/9 of 6.6. He goes up against the new look Brewers, who are no longer at the bottom of the barrel in offensive categories. However, digging deeper into their past month, maybe they aren’t as good as they seem. Their wOBA is near the bottom, 26th to be exact in the last month, at .297. Their ISO is also extremely low at .112. That’s almost Marlins territory. Lackey certainly isn’t going to overpower them, but he certainly could be in line for a sneaky start.
Max Scherzer vs. Colordo Rockies ($13200) – Just out of respect of how well Scherzer has pitched this season., I’ll rank him a bit higher than I feel he should be. Stephen Strasburg pitched a hell of a lot better than I expected yesterday. I ripped him up and down and he shoved it down my throat. I have no problem ripping players and in the same respect, will happily take the backlash when I’m wrong. Well done, sir. As for Scherzer, again, he has a tough matchup today. Regardless of how well Strasburg pitched yesterday, the Rockies still own the highest wOBA over the past month at .353 and the highest ISO at .199. Obviously, we have a huge factor here with the Rockies on the road, but it’s still worth nothing. Scherzer owns a 2.31 ERA with a 0.85 WHIP and a K/9 of 10.4. This comes down to, who’s going to break? The Rockies offense or the power pitching of Schezer? At $13,200, are you willing to take the risk?
Jake Arrieta vs. San Francisco Giants ($11,400) – Like Scherzer, this is another game where Arrieta has a tough matchup against a good offensive team. However, Arrieta has pitched really well this season overall. Arrieta comes into today with a 2.50 ERA to go with a 1.00 WHIP and a K/9 of 9. The Giants are very good offensive club, overall they ran 2nd in batting average 7th in runs scored and 6th in OPS. Over the past month, they have the 3rd highest woBA at .347, but their ISO is about avearge at .160. I’m not thrilled with this matchup, but I wouldn’t plummet Arrieta in the ranks today either. It’s a bit risky, but I think Arrieta might be under owned today, which hopefully goes to your advantage.
Mike Fiers vs. Oakland Athletics ($7900) – Ya know, as we get a little deeper into this article, I’m starting to notice the pitching today really isn’t that great. Aside form the top four, it might be tough to efficiently roster two quality pitchers tonight. Fiers could be a sneaky one today. He gets a matchup against Oakland, who are certainly a tough team to strikeout. Which is too bad, because Fiers has such a high K/9 of 9.3. However, he has the potential to sneak in a few in this game. The A’s have the lowest wOBA in the league over the past month, at .258. That in itself is a very enticing reason to roster Fiers today. The cherry on top is that this game is being played in Oakland.
Felix Hernandez vs. Texas Rangers ($10500) – The Rangers are a much better team then they were in the first couple months of the season. Hernandez has had a strange season in my opinion. In his last start against the Rockies, he let up 11 hits. On the surface, this might sound horrible, but nine of those 11 hits went for singles. Add on the fact that this game was at Coors and maybe we can give that game a pass. But this seems to have happened quite a few times this season to the King. Coming into today, the Rangers have the fifth highest wOBA in the last month at .341. They’ve been a tough team to strikeout, ranked 21st in the past month, so I don’t know if I’ll be all in on this one. His price tag is certainly lower than usual, but that’s for a reason.
Jimmy Nelson vs. St. Louis Cardinals ($8300) – The Cardinals have been struggling offensively as of late, so this might be a good time to jump on Nelson. Over the past month the Cardinals own a .307 wOBA, which is good for only 19th in the league. The loss of Holliday seems to be having some effect on this numbers for sure. While Holliday wasn’t exactly tearing it up in the home run department, his .290 avearge is certainly a loss to the team. Nelson has been fantastic his past two starts against the Padres and Cubs, scoring 24.6 and 28.8 in those. At this price of $8300, Nelson could be a nice sneaky play.
Jose Quintana vs. Kasnas City Royals ($8400) – This is a tough one, honestly. On one end of the spectrum, the Royals hit left handed pitching quite well. Against lefties, the Royals are hitting .277 on the year, good for 4th in the league. On the flipside, they certainly aren’t the great offensive team they’ve been known to be this past month. The Royals have a .305 wOBA over the past month with a ISO of .141, good for 21st in the league. Quintana is a very middle of the road pitcher who is usally good for 15-18 points per start. His price tag is a bit high for this matchup, but with so many less than stellar pitchers to choose from today, you might not have a choice.
Alex Wood vs. Pittsburgh Pirates ($7600)- Wood is no longer a Brave and has his second start as a Dodger against the Pirates. It’s a very middle of the road team against a middle of the road pitcher. The Pirates own a .322 wOBA over the past month with an ISO at .151. Wood has done a great job at keeping the ball in the park, as he’s only given up 8 home runs on the season. He shouldn’t have to worry about the long ball too much tonight, as the Pirates are ranked 25th in the league in home runs. His price is certainly a good one, but keep your expectations in check. Wood is only averaging 14.1 points per start. I’d say he will be right around that spot today.
Jake Peavy vs. Chicago Cubs ($6000) – I’m interested to see how this one play out. The Cubs have the highest strikeout rate in the majors in the past month. Their K% of 24.3% is tied for first with the Diamondbacks. Peavy isn’t the strikeout pitcher he once was, but his 6.6 K/9 is certainly obtainable today. The Cubs continue to struggle offensivel, with a.307 wOBA over their last month. For $6900, Peavy could be a real sneaky play on the day.
Patrick Corbin vs. Cincinnati Reds ($7100) Corbin had a couple rough starts over his last three, but today he gets a weak Reds offense. Over the past two weeks, the Reds rank 22nd in wOBA at .299 with an ISO of .129. Corbin has been up and down his past three starts, with two quality starts against the Mariners and Brewers. However, the light hitting Nationals whaced him around for three runs on six hits in only one inning pitched.
Rest of the Field
Justin Verlander vs. Boston Red Sox ($6300) – Just when you think Verlander is about to turn things around, he throws up all over himself again. He takes on the Red Sox today, whom Verlander just faced and scored 17.8 points against. In that start, Verlander went eight innings giving up one run on eight hits but only striking out three. The Red Sox are one of the toughest teams to strikeout this season, and Verlander with his 6.3 K/9 isn’t going to get the job done. He’s too risky of a pick to throw on your roster today.
Mashairo Tanaka vs. Toronto Blue Jays ($9000) – Any pitcher against the Blue Jays is usually not worth recommending. Tanaka just hasn’t been himself this season, as he owns a 3.84 ERA with a 1.06 WHIP. Those sound great and all, but 4.3 points against the Rangers and 13.9 against the Red Sox are certainly not starts you’d expect from him. The Blue Jays have the fourth best wOBA over the past two weeks and the 5th best ISO at .203. At the price of $9000, forget it.
Jerome Williams vs. San Diego Padres ($4300) – Nah.