WATCH: CHASE OR FADE – VINCE VELASQUEZ
Major League Baseball features 14 games on the schedule this Tuesday, but it will take some extra skill to navigate a soggy slate where the weather is almost sure to be a factor. With heavy rain in the Northeast, the games in New York, Boston and Philadelphia are all in serious jeopardy while weather could also impact the games in Baltimore and Denver. Make sure to double-check before first pitch for the latest updates to avoid taking a killer zero if games get canceled. I’ll avoid the three highest-risk games in today’s targets since there are plenty of other options to consider. Let’s get started:
Clayton Kershaw – LAD @ SF – $14,300 – Kershaw is crazy-expensive, but there’s definitely plenty of reasons to go with the Dodgers’ ace tonight. In three of his four starts this year he has posted over 32 DKFP (the other start was at Coors Field). He enters tonight’s game in San Francisco 3-1 with a 2.54 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 28.1 innings. Over the last three years, he is 7-3 against his NL West rivals with a 1.95 ERA and 123 punch-outs in 106.1 innings. He should have a great chance to pick up a win since he’ll be opposed by Ty Blach pitching in place of the injured Madison Bumgarner.
Other Options – Danny Duffy ($10,200), Marco Estrada ($8,800)
Ervin Santana – MIN @ TEX – $7,100 – The Twins have gotten ace-like production from their Opening Day starter Ervin Santana, but since few expected him to get off to a hot start he’s still very affordable. In his four starts, Santana has gone 3-1 allowing just two runs on nine hits in his 28 innings. That gives him a crazy 0.64 ERA, a 0.61 WHIP and a .099 opponents’ batting average. He hasn’t piled up strikeouts, but he does have 20 Ks compared to just eight walks. Tonight, he’ll take on the Rangers who have a dangerous lineup but have only started the year hitting .211 as a team.
Other Options – Michael Wacha ($6,800), Jesse Hahn ($5,500)
Yadier Molina – STL vs TOR – $3,300 – Molina went 3-5 on Saturday in his last start extending his mini-hitting-streak to four games and raised his average on the season to .255. Tonight, Molina makes sense as he and the Cardinals host Marco Estrada and the Cardinals. In his career, Molina is 13-24 (.542) against Estrada with two doubles and a home run to go with five RBI.
Other Options – Welington Castillo ($3,800), Russell Martin ($3,600)
Tony Wolters – COL vs. WAS – $3,100 – If you’re looking for a cheap way to get in on the score fests at Coors Field, check out Rockies’ catcher Tony Wolters who went 3-4 with two RBI last night and raised his average all the way up to .351 (13-37) on the season. He doesn’t offer much power and is still searching for his first homer, but there should be runs scored, RBI and solid hitting from the left-handed hitting rookie tonight as the Rockies face righty, Joe Ross.
Other Options – Manny Piña ($2,900), Austin Hedges($2,900)
Ryan Zimmerman – WAS @ COL – $5,000 – While he has been a bargain most of the season, Zimmerman’s salary skyrocketed as he faced the Rockies last night but he delivered with a two-run homer and 16 DKFP. Zimmerman has homered in four of his last six games and is up to seven homers and 18 RBI on the year. He’s hitting .379 with a 1.218 OPS as he faces German Márquez tonight who will be making his first start of the season.
Other Options – Chris Davis ($4,700), Anthony Rizzo ($4,800)
Ryon Healy – OAK @ LAA – $3,100 – Healy has double-digit DKFP in four of his last five games and has gone an impressive 10-20 (.500) over the last week with three doubles and a home run. Healy has quickly pulled his average from .188 just a week ago to .279 with his hot week, and he’ll look to keep things rolling against the Angels’ J.C. Ramirez tonight.
Other Options – Justin Smoak ($3,000), Adrián González ($3,400)
Brian Dozier – MIN @ TEX – $5,000 – Dozier posted his third straight game with double-digit DKFP yesterday going 2-5 with a double and three RBI to raise his average to .257 on the season. He adds some speed to the top of the lineup (4-for-5 in stolen base attempts this season) and usually posts a strong OPS as well. Tonight, he’ll look to extend his hitting streak to five games as he faces Andrew Cashner for the first time in his career.
Other Options – Jonathan Villar ($4,600), Ian Kinsler ($4,100)
Yolmer Sánchez – CWS vs. KC – $2,300 – If you’re looking for an ultra-value to compensate for your big spending at other positions, check out Sánchez of the White Sox who is typically a light-hitting option but has started the year hitting .267 with a homer and three RBI. If he’s in the lineup tonight, I think he’ll be worth a flier against Royals’ scheduled starter Danny Duffy. Sánchez is 6-14 (.429) with a double in his career against Duffy and usually splits slightly better vs. lefties.
Other Options – José Pereza ($3,900), Jed Lowrie ($2,600)
Nolan Arenado – COL @ LAD – $5,400 – Arenado is a go-to stud option at 3B and he rarely disappoints. He has started the season 24-74 (.324) with six homers and 13 RBI. He has hit safely in seven of his last eight after going 1-4 with a triple last night. He takes on Joe Ross and the Nats at Coors Field tonight, and he’s always a good option to go off when playing at elevation.
Other Options – Jake Lamb ($4,100), Eugenio Suárez ($3,700)
Josh Harrison – PIT vs CHC – $3,300 – Harrison has hit safely in each of his last five starts going 7-19 with a triple and two walks over that run which has boosted his batting average to .293. Harrison has been hitting second for the Bucs lately, and he’ll be a great value if he’s in that spot tonight against Kyle Hendricks and the Cubs. Harrison has hit Hendricks in the past going 6-15 with a double, homer and RBI against the Cubs’ scheduled starter.
Other Options – Justin Turner ($3,300), Matt Davidson ($2,900)
Trevor Story – COL vs WAS – $5,000 – It’s crazy that a player hitting .188 on the season is a good play when he costs $5K, but Story is that since he has been heating up over the last week going 8-25 (.320) with a double and three homers after a very ugly start to the season. Story always seems to crush at Coors, so if you can find a way to afford the salary he should be a solid option tonight.
Other Options – Jorge Polanco ($3,800), Elvis Andrus ($4,000)
Chris Owings – ARI vs SD – $3,600 – Owings went 2-4 with a homer and a stolen base last night giving him 28 DKFP. He has at least 12 DKFP in each of his last three starts and has hit safely in four straight. He brings a nice blend of speed (5-for-5 in stolen base attempts) and power (.820 OPS). He’ll take on lefty Clayton Richard tonight who he is 3-8 against in the past. Looking at career splits, Owings definitely enjoys facing lefties and hitting at Chase Field.
Other Options – Andrelton Simmons ($3,100), Kiké Hernández ($3,100)
Nelson Cruz – SEA @ DET – $4,300 – Cruz has gone 7-18 (.389) over the last week as the Mariners lineup has come alive. He had a double and a homer on Sunday against Oakland raising his average to .271 and his OPS to .855 on the season. Cruz hits the road as the Mariners visit Detroit tonight and take on Jordan Zimmermann. Over the last three years, Cruz is 10-44 at Comerica Park but five of those 10 hits have been home runs.
Other Options – Bryce Harper ($6,100), Charlie Blackmon ($5,200)
Kevin Pillar – TOR @ STL – $3,300 – Pillar cooled off a bit last night going 0-3 but still drawing a walk. He has moved into the leadoff spot for Toronto and thrived going 15-45 (.349) with four doubles, three homers and two stolen bases while hitting first in the order. Like most of the Blue Jays’ order, he hasn’t faced Michael Wacha who starts in St. Louis tonight, but Pillar has been hot enough (10-30 over the last week) to still be a solid value play tonight.
Other Options – Mitch Haniger ($3,400), Jason Heyward ($3,100)
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Z.Thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.