With twelve games on the “main” evening slate, this is one of the largest Saturday player pools we have seen this season. We have top end pitching, gas cans in search of a match and of course a game in Coors Field, so let’s get right to the good stuff!
Jose Fernandez – MIA vs NYM – $13,900 – Normally I would go with the $800 discount and the better matchup with Max Scherzer; however, if we are allocating this much of our salary cap to one pitcher, I am going to let the indoor climate controlled conditions of Marlins Park be the tiebreaker for me. By no means is this much of a concession when we consider that since last season, JoFer has a 41.1% strikeout rate against right-handed hitters and a 28.2% strikeout rate against lefties. The Mets are projected to plate just 2.9 runs tonight, so I will “manage” to scrape up the extra salary somewhere. Fernandez is my top pitching play in all formats.
Chris Sale – CHW vs DET – $12,300 – Even though they will roll out a nearly full right-handed compliment of hitters, the Tigers have been in the bottom third of the league this season against left-handed pitching. If I am looking to pivot away from Jose Fernandez in tournaments, Sale would be the other premium option I will consider as he has a good chance to reach the twenty fantasy point plateau, and the savings will upgrade several batters.
Collin McHugh – HOU vs LAA – $7,100 – The Halos really don’t scare too many people with their offense as it is so inconsistent. McHugh has a nice history against the current Anaheim hitters with a .256/.321/.432 slash line and 22.4% strikeout rate over 125 at bats. The Astros are the favorites to garner the win tonight which is worth an additional four DraftKings points.
Tyler Anderson – COL vs ATL – $5,700 – Tournaments only herr, However, this recommendation is not quite as crazy as it seems when we factor in the heavily discounted salary. The Braves have the third worst offense against southpaws from a scoring efficiency perspective and while this game is in Coors Field, they have the lowest power numbers in the league against lefties and are managing just one home run every 57 at bats and heck, just one extra base hit every 14 at bats. If Anderson can just reach double digit fantasy points, he is a steal at this price level.
David Ortiz (1B) – BOS vs MIN – $5,600 – There is a chance this lofty price tag and the luxury pitchers we will be targeting could keep The Masses away from Big Papi tonight. He has a tremendous matchup against RHP Ricky Nolasco who has seen better days. The Boston Red Sox are the most prolific offense in the league, and they are averaging 5.64 runs per game. This is a nice pivot away from the Coors Field Extravaganza.
Tyler Naquin (OF) – CLE at BAL – $4,500 – Yes, he will likely be in the bottom third of the Cleveland batting order, but the rookie has been amazing against right-handed pitching this season with a .439 wOBA and an absurd .320 ISO with twelve home runs over his last 160 at bats in lefty/righty matchups. While RHP Kevin Gausman has been decent against lefties, it is going to be hot and humid tonight with a “feels-like” temperature of 99 degrees at first pitch in Camden Yards. That is also known as home run weather, and we will want to target hitters on both sides of this matchup.
Bryce Harper (OF) – WAS vs SDP – $5,000 – Speaking of weather, I attended the Nationals game last night and the balls were definitely jumping of the bats. This makes me want to target former Washington hurler RHP Edwin Jackson tonight. It is a little surprising that he is back in The Show as he has been knocked around quite a bit with a .363 wOBA allowed to lefties and a .338 wOBA allowed to righties culminating in a 5.36 ERA since the beginning of 2014 spread across 213 1/3 innings. Teammate Daniel Murphy (2B) – $5,300 is also very much in play tonight.
Corey Seager (SS) – LAD at STL – $4,900 – Seager and the Dodgers get a ballpark boost in Busch Stadium on Saturday against RHP Mike Leake. During his 370 career plate appearances in lefty/righty matchups he has tallied a .407 wOBA and a .240 ISO. If you are looking to spend at the shortstop position, Seager is your guy.
Jake Lamb (3B) – ARZ at CIN – $5,400 – The Diamondbacks were a little disappointing last night, but they get another bite of the apple tonight with a great matchup against RHP Keyvius Sampson who is drawing a spot start for Cinci. Over the last 145 batters he has faced who are swinging the stick from the left-side of the plate, he is allowing a .396 wOBA and a 1.35 HR/9 rate. He has been crushed by same-handed hitters as well with a .369 wOBA and a 1.71 HR/9 rate over 188 batters, so we can also look to Paul Goldschmidt (1B) – $4,800 as a nice corner infield pairing.
Danny Valencia (3B) – OAK vs TBR – $4,300 – With the Oakland offense struggling this season plating just 4.09 runs per contest (23rd in the league), they have really been ignored by the daily fantasy community over the last couple months. In a fun twist, Valencia has had both two and three home runs games against Tampa Bay this season, and while none were at the expense of LHP Drew Smyly, this is a perfect spot with Smyly allowing a 1.87 HR/9 rate to the last 578 right-handed hitters he has faced.
Brian Dozier (2B) – MIN at BOS – $4,500 – Tournaments only, but we know that LHP David Price does allow home runs (16 so far this season against 211 batters) and Dozier has poked four over the fence in his last nine games.
Corey Dickerson (OF) – TBR at OAK – $3,500 – This is just too good of a price for Dickerson in this matchup with RHP Kendall Graveman. Dickerson has busted out of his slump with his recent trip through his old stomping grounds in Colorado and has nine hits over his last 17 at bats with three extra base hits and just two strikeouts. Enjoy!
Manny Machado (3B/SS) – BAL vs CLE – $3,600 – With Machado’s multi-position flexibility, I will likely be playing him across the board tonight. Since the beginning of 2014, he has compiled a .378 wOBA and a .220 ISO against same-handed pitching. RHP Josh Tomlin has allowed the fourth most home runs so far this season with 24, and as previously mentioned, the weather is perfect for some crooked numbers in Baltimore tonight. Teammate Chris Davis (1B) – $3,700 is a fine player to pair with Machado or as a tournament “one-off” for his multi-home run upside.
Ryan Schimpf (2B) – SDP at WAS – $2,800 – Speaking of home runs allowed and great hitting conditions, Schimpf is a tremendous contrarian play against RHP Max Scherzer who has allowed the fifth most home runs this season. I would be shocked if we see Schimpf on more than 5% of all tournament lineups and through 70 Major League at bats, he has gone for extra bases with 13 of his 16 hits.
Brett Eibner (OF) – KCR vs TEX – $3,100 – Eibner is another youngster with some pop, and though it is a miniscule sample size of 26 plate appearances against southpaws, he does have five doubles and a home run among his nine hits. While LHP Cole Hames has a sterling 3.00 ERA, he does allow solo home runs and has given up a dinger for every 10.6 batters he has faced this season.
Victor Martinez (1B) – DET at CHW – $2,700 – While this is a tough matchup, did you know that over 36 career at bats against LHP Chris Sale, V-Mart is hitting .500 with three doubles and four home runs. He is an excellent option that will help us work in one of the mega aces tonight, though this strategy is probably best left for tournaments as there are A TON of first basemen with fine matchups on Saturday night.
Jurickson Profar (2B/3B) – TEX at KCR – $3,500 – With Prince Fielder out with his recurring neck injury, we should see Odor in the lineup and near the top of the order for the Rangers. Texas has averaged 4.78 runs per game this season which is the seventh highest total in the league, though they have somehow been held to one run or less three times in their last seven games. RHP Yordano Ventura has been known for his implosions on the mound for some time now, and this is an excellent opportunity to stack up the Rangers including Nomar Mazara (OF) – $3,100, Mitch Moreland (1B) – $3,100, Rougned Odor (2B/3B) – $4,200 and Adrian Beltre (3B) – $3,000
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.