WATCH: MLB IN 90 SECONDS – RYON HEALY
A 10-game Thursday night main slate is larger than what we typically see in this spot. The best place for last minute info, other than DK Live, of course, is Twitter. Find me there @RyNoonan. Let’s dig in.
James Paxton – SEA vs. LAA – $12,300 – Seattle’s big left-hander has been on a roll of late and has solidified himself as one of the game’s top starters. Against the middling Angels’ lineup, Paxton has enough upside to be tournament viable while his swing-and-miss stuff puts him squarely in play for cash games.
Other Options – Danny Salazar ($11,700), Jacob deGrom ($12,700)
Tanner Roark – WAS vs. MIA – $7,500 – I don’t love Tanner Roark for tournaments because he lacks the top-tier strikeout upside that we want, but he’s a strong SP2 in cash games at home against the Marlins. Roark does a good job at limiting hard-hit contact and should be able to work deep into this one if he keeps the free passes in check.
Other Options – Carlos Rodon ($7,000)
Gary Sanchez – NYY vs. TOR – $4,300 – Gary Sanchez is almost always in a tier by himself at the catcher position, and he’s squarely in play again on Thursday. He’s fared better against right-handed pitching in his young career to-date so a matchup against flyball-heavy Marco Estrada in Toronto is a strong spot if you have the funds to spend up at the position.
Other Options – Yadier Molina ($3,600)
Austin Barnes – LAD vs. ARI – $3,300 – Austin Barnes has been day-to-day after getting struck in the hand over the weekend, but he’ll likely be behind the dish for the Dodgers on Thursday night against the left-handed Anthony Banda and the Diamondbacks. Banda has looked decent in his first couple appearances, but the Dodgers have the highest implied total on the slate at 5.4 runs.
Danny Valencia – SEA vs. LAA – $3,900 – Danny Valencia has settled into more of a platoon role since the addition of Yonder Alonso, but targeting Valencia when he’s facing a lefty is the way to go. On Thursday against Los Angeles’ starter Tyler Skaggs, we’ll likely see Valencia in the two hole. His hard-hit rate is up of late, and his wOBA and ISO are nearly 50 points higher when he’s facing a left-hander.
Other Options – Eric Thames ($3,800), Matt Carpenter ($4,200)
Ryon Healy – OAK vs. BAL – $3,500 – You can play Ryon Healy at either first or third base with his multi-position eligibility, and I think you’ll want to find a spot for him somewhere on Thursday. Healy has massive platoon splits right now, to the point where he’s an easy fade against right-handers and a great play whenever he’s facing a lefty with a .459 wOBA and .333 ISO.
Jose Altuve – HOU vs. CWS – $5,500 – Carlos Rodon looked sharp last time out against Boston, but Houston has a 5.4 implied total tonight. The Astros’ offensive catalyst, Jose Altuve, has to be considered if you’re spending up or stacking the Astros on the road in Chicago.
Other Options – Jose Ramirez ($4,800)
Asdrubal Cabrera – NYM vs. PHI – $3,400 – Hitting second for the Mets on the road, Asdrubal Cabrera is a strong consideration in cash games for Thursday. All his power comes from the left side of the plate, as the switch-hitting Cabrera will get to do here against the highly volatile Vincent Velasquez.
Other Options – Logan Forsthye ($3,100)
Justin Turner – LAD vs. ARI – $4,700 – Justin Turner has profiled as a reverse splits hitter for most of the past few seasons, but he’s been putting in work against lefties this season. His wOBA and ISO are both significantly higher this season when Turner is facing a lefty, and this park shift from Dodger Stadium to Arizona is one that needs to be exploited.
Other Options – Manny Machado ($4,800)
Mike Moustakas – KC vs. STL – $4,000 – I don’t consider him a great cash game play, but Mike Moustakas has appeal in tournaments due to his ability to hit the ball out of the ball park. The Royals’ third baseman has seen his price fall a bit over the past two weeks despite hitting home runs twice in that time span, so this $4,000 ticket presents a bit of a buying opportunity.
Corey Seager – LAD vs. ARI – $4,800 – Most will likely stay away from Corey Seager because he’s facing a lefty, but Seager has shown why he’s one of the very best in the game the season and has worked on eliminating any holes in his game. Seager’s wOBA and ISO are better against left-handed pitching this season than they are against right-handers, and as we mentioned before with Justin Turner, the positive park shift here is worth noting.
Other Options – Francisco Lindor ($4,900)
Kike Hernandez – LAD vs. ARI – $3,300 – Hey, more Dodgers! Targeting the team with the slate’s highest implied-team total is a good idea, especially when they’re in one of the game’s best hitting environments. He’ll likely hit near the bottom of Los Angeles’ lineup, but Hernandez’s .269 ISO against lefties puts him on the map in both cash and tournaments on Thursday.
Nelson Cruz – SEA vs. LAA – $5,200 – ‘The Boomstick’ is always an option when facing a left-hander, and he’s my favorite bat to spend up on for this slate. Cruz is coming off of a two-homer game on Wednesday, and his hard-hit rate, average hit distance and fly ball rate are all up over his past two weeks of play.
Other Options – Aaron Judge ($5,300), Michael Conforto ($4,700)
Rajai Davis – OAK vs. BAL – $4,100 – The multiple stolen base upside that Rajai Davis still has is hard to ignore, and Baltimore’s Wade Miley will have his hands full holding runners on. I like the A’s as a sneaky stack here, and Rajai is priced in a spot that will likely keep him off most radars.
Other Options – Austin Jackson ($3,100), Steven Souza ($3,900)
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.