Thursday’s main slate includes the second half of a Toronto/St. Louis doubleheader, making it a four-game evening slate. Make sure you check DK Live before lock so you get all the up to date lineup and weather information before the first pitch. If you’re on Twitter, find me there @RyNoonan. Let’s dig in.
Chris Sale – BOS vs. NYY – $12,900 – With the way Chris Sale has pitched to open the season, he’d be the chalk on a 12-game slate, so he’s truly the bee’s knees on a four-gamer. Sale has averaged 34 DraftKings points per start this season and appears to be back to form after changing his approach slightly in 2016. It’s not a great matchup against the Yankees, but Chris Sale is matchup proof on a four-game slate.
Adam Wainwright – STL vs. TOR – $8,500 – Up $2,500 after his last outing, it’s difficult to make the case for Adam Wainwright as a value play, but there just isn’t much meat on the bone in terms of pitching values. Wainwright and the Cardinals are a sizable favorite here and the Jays have the lowest implied-team total on the slate. Perhaps he’ll see a weakened lineup as well since this will be the second game of a doubleheader.
Yadier Molina – STL vs. TOR – $3,500 – Yadier Molina will likely get one of the two games off, but if he’s playing here he’s a safe cash game play. He’s swinging it well of late, with a hit in seven of his last eight games played, and the Cardinals have a healthy 4.8 implied-team total.
Austin Hedges – SD vs. ARI – $3,000 – Playing in Arizona is a great park shift for Hedges and his Padres’ teammates. It’s enhanced with the matchup against Taijuan Walker who, when he’s not right, allows a strong amount of fly balls. I don’t think San Diego grinds out a bunch of hits here, but the long ball might come into play often.
Wil Myers – SD vs. ARI – $5,000 – Ah, another Padres’ bat, a theme you’ll see a few more times I believe. Again, I don’t hate Taijuan Walker here, but he’s homer-prone and Wil Myers has power regardless of the handedness of the pitcher he’s facing.
Other Options – Paul Goldschmidt ($5,500)
Matt Carpenter – STL vs. TOR – $4,400 – Dating back to the start of last season, Matt Carpenter has a .386 wOBA and 143 wRC+ against right-handed pitching, most with better resumes than Toronto’s Casey Lawrence who Carpenter will face Thursday night.
Yangervis Solarte – SD vs. ARI – $4,000 – Yangervis Solarte’s game won’t ‘wow’ you, but he’s a steady contributor with an above average contact rate that keeps him hitting near the top of the lineup every day. He’s a viable cash game play here on the road getting nine innings of at-bats.
Jed Lowrie – OAK vs. LAA – $3,000 – Jed Lowrie is in play if he’s hitting near the top of Oakland’s order on Thursday. He doesn’t hit for much power from the left-hand side of the plate, but he’s a cheaper version of Solarte who’s capable of piecing together a few hits for your cash lineups.
Jake Lamb – ARI vs. SD – $4,600 – I think Jake Lamb will be the most popular play on this slate not named Chris Sale. The Diamondbacks have a huge implied-team total at six runs, and Lamb’s .374 wOBA and .281 ISO against right-handed pitching dating back to 2016 bodes poorly for egg tossing champion, Jered Weaver.
Jedd Gyorko – STL vs. TOR – $3,600 – Jedd Gyorko is on a bit of a heater, so it’s time to strike while the iron’s hot. Hitting cleanup behind Matt Carpenter, Gyorko is in a prime spot to contribute to St. Louis’ 4.8 implied-team total on the slate, and Gyorko has always had elite power even though his current .340 batting average is unsustainable.
Aledmys Diaz – STL vs. TOR – $4,200 – Diaz crushes right-handed pitching and is firmly in play for both cash games and tournaments here. His 147 wRC+ against right-handers is top-20 in all of baseball since the start of 2016, and his minuscule 13% strikeout rate helps raise his floor for cash games.
Andrelton Simmons – LAA vs. OAK – $3,100 – I think Aledmys Diaz is the play at the position, but if you’re fading the Cardinals’ bats I could see the appeal of Simmons on this shortened slate. He’s swinging it well right now, with hits in seven of his last eight, including four multi-hit games.
Mike Trout – LAA vs. OAK – $5,700 – It’s a hefty price to pay for any bat, but Trout has delivered of late, with double-digit fantasy points in nine of his last 11 games. The price may drive down his ownership, making him an intriguing piece of the puzzle for this four-game slate.
Other Options – Mookie Betts ($5,400), A.J. Pollock ($4,800)
David Peralta – ARI vs. SD – $3,800 – Hitting near the top of the order for a team with a six-run implied-team total should get your attention. Peralta’s spot in the lineup makes him a safe cash game play at this price, but he has enough upside for your GPP lineups as well. Over his past 640 at-bats against right-handed pitching, essentially a full season’s worth of at-bats, Peralta has a .378 wOBA and .202 ISO.
Other Options – Andrew Benintendi ($3,700), Hunter Renfroe ($3,600)
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is RyanFix) 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.