There are a full fifteen games Tuesday night with some fine pitching options as well as some incredibly sketchy ones. With two solid pitchers in Coors Field tonight, I am looking elsewhere as the prices are just a little too high and the pitchers involved are just good enough, that I am moving on to other targets of opportunity. Let’s jump in!
Max Scherzer – WAS at PHI – $13,600 – I think Mad Max is the clear top play on Tuesday; however, he has a price that matches the expectations of this matchup with Philadelphia. The Phillies, Braves and Padres have been battling all season to see who the worst team against right-handed pitching is, and currently, it is too close to call. This will be the fourth time that Scherzer has had this matchup, and he has a 2-0 record across 21 innings pitched with 24 baserunners scoring six runs which has been offset by 25 strikeouts. Over his last ten starts, Scherzer has a 2.27 ERA and a minuscule 0.93 WHIP making him the belle of the ball.
Drew Pomeranz – BOS vs TBR – $11,600 – This will be the second straight start for Pomeranz against the Tampa Bay Rays, and just five days ago in Tropicana Field he held them to two runs over six innings with an eye-popping eleven strikeouts on an even 100 pitches. The Rays have the highest strikeout rate in the league against southpaws at 25.7% and this has Pomeranz squarely on the podium as the first runner-up if we cannot stretch our budget enough to get Max Scherzer.
J.A. Happ – TOR at BAL – $9,300 – Compared to the two recommended pitchers above, Happ actually is a pretty good value with his salary nearly a third less than the other top options. The Baltimore Orioles have been a bottom five team this season against southpaws and this is STILL something that a lot of gamers are failing to notice. This will be the third meeting for Happ this season, and in the first two he piled up 16 strikeouts in 14 innings and the Blue Jays won both games for him. He has a clear path to 20+ DraftKings points once again and the savvy move will be to have him on at least one of our tournament lineups.
Seth Lugo – NYM vs MIA – $4,100 – I’m recommending Lugo as a tournament only option, and we can strongly consider the rookie because of his near minimum salary. It also helps that the Marlins are sliding down towards the bottom five teams with regards to scoring efficiency against right-handed pitchers, and they are really missing Justin Bour, and, of course, Giancarlo Stanton. In his last two outings, the young hurler has compiled an interesting stat line with 11 2/3 innings pitched, allowing just three earned runs on 13 baserunners with a solid eight strikeouts. As long as he can get into double-digit DraftKings point territory, he will return value and then some.
Nelson Cruz (OF) – SEA at TEX – $4,100 – For what seems like the twentieth time this season, it is my privilege to recommend Nelson Cruz against a southpaw. On the season, Cruz has been phenomenal in 183 righty/lefty plate appearances with a .394 wOBA and an insane .310 ISO. While LHP Cole Hamels is a fine pitcher, he does allow home runs, and righties have tagged him for sixteen this season.
J.T. Realmuto (CATCH) – MIA at NYM – $4,100 – This is a great matchup for Realmuto who often finds himself at the top of the Marlins batting order when they are facing a right-handed starting pitcher. RHP Seth Lugo has been up and down in his rookie campaign, and Realmuto is an excellent selection with his .351 wOBA across 331 at bats this season against same-handed pitchers.
DJ LeMahieu (2B) – COL vs LAD – $5,000 – LeMahieu is neck-and-neck with Daniel Murphy for the National League batting title with both hovering round .343 at the moment. So far this year, LeMahieu has really gotten it done against lefties with a .354/.444/.540 slash line, and he is a fine luxury option at the keystone position on Tuesday night against LHP Rich Hill.
Bryce Harper (OF) – WAS at PHI – $5,500 – After a hot start to the season, followed by a prolonged cold spell, Harper is back to his world-beating ways. Over his last 42 at bats, the reigning National League MVP has a .357 average, a 1.019 OPS and six extra base hits to go along with a dozen RBIs. Over his last 34 starts, RHP Jerad Eickhoff has allowed a 1.58 HR/9 to hitters swinging the stick from the left-side of the plate. Daniel Murphy (2B) – $5,200 is also very much in play with his 49 extra base hits in 323 at bats this season against right-handed pitchers. Enjoy!
Tim Anderson (SS) – CHW at DET – $4,000 – Rookie Tim Anderson has been near the top of the batting order since the All-Star Break when the Southsiders have been facing left-handed hurlers. Over an admittedly small 56 plate appearance sample-size, Anderson has a stellar .382 wOBA and a .900 OPS. Not too shabby for a first year player.
Adrian Beltre (3B) – TEX vs SEA – $4,700 – Beltre has been a noted lefty-crusher over his career, and he has a matchup with LHP James Paxton who has had some home run issues this season. Over his last 115 at bats against southpaws, Beltre has posted a .403 wOBA and a .970 OPS making him a solid option in all formats.
Mike Napoli (1B) – CLE vs MIN – $4,100 – Napoli is the Cleveland first basemen we want when a lefty is on the mound. Thirty year-old LHP Andrew Albers has not made a start in the Majors since September 2013. This scenario has Napoli at the top of my home run list on Tuesday.
Matt Carpenter (2B/3B) – STL at MIL – $5,000 – Carpenter has really found his form after missing a chunk of the season with an injury, and now that he has been instilled at the top of the Redbirds batting order, he is ALWAYS a top option against in lefty/righty matchups. RHP Wily Peralta has been above average in his four starts since returning from his farm system exile; however, he is still sporting a 5.87 ERA and a 1.73 WHIP on the season. We can also look to Carpenter’s fellow multi-position eligible teammate Brandon Moss (1B/OF) – $4,500 – and his 22 home runs in just 223 at bats against right-handed pitching this season.
Ryan Schimpf (2B) – SDP at ATL – $3,800 – This is a nice matchup for Schimpf who has 30 extra-base hits this season in just 159 at bats against right-handed pitching. RHP Matt Wisler has allowed a .371 wOBA and a 1.61 HR/9 to left-handed hitters since the beginning of the 2015 season which spans 239 innings. Alex Dickerson (OF) – $3,200 – is also in play as a one-off or as a synergy pairing with Schimpf.
Mike Zunino (CATCH) – SEA at TEX – $2,800 – After a dismal 2015, Zunino has really turned things around this year and is back on track as a young power hitting catcher. This season against opposite-handed pitching, he has been solid with a .366 wOBA and a .290 ISO making him an extreme discount dandy on Tuesday in this matchup with LHP Cole Hamels.
Josh Bell (OF) – PIT at CHC – $2,200 – The switch-hitting youngster is on a hot streak and performed well again last night with a home run, two walks, two runs scored and an RBI in Wrigley Field. At this price point, my fingers are crossed that he is in the lineup against RHP Kyle Hendricks since he will likely be in the two-hole, and this price point provides us with some much needed salary cap flexibility. If teammate Matt Joyce (OF) – $3,400 gets inserted as the cleanup hitter, he is another outstanding play with his .402 wOBA and .270 ISO against right-handed pitching this season.
Jake Lamb (3B) – ARZ at SFG – $3,900 – While this is a downgrade in hitting environments with this contest taking place in AT&T Park, we simply cannot ignore the discounted cost for Lamb who has poked 21 of his 25 home runs off of right-handed pitching. RHP Johnny Cueto is a good pitcher, but not nearly as good as the name-recognition would have us believe.
Jason Kipnis (2B) – CLE vs MIN – $3,900 – Kipnis has been dreadful over his last ten games; however, baseball is a game of streaks and coming back home after a road trip AND getting to face a shaky pitcher like LHP Andrew Albers, even without the platoon-advantage, I am more than comfortable going back to the well with Kipnis in this one.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is emac) 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.