With the September roster expansion there will be a handful of discounted rookies that can aid our lineup construction. Let’s take a look at the best targets on today’s slate!
Clayton Kershaw – LAD vs COL – $12,800 – Kershaw and the Dodgers are three-to-one favorites to garner the victory today against the visiting Rockies who are projected to plate just 2.1 runs. Any other analysis would be superfluous.
Madison Bumgarner – SFG at SDP – $13,400 – This will be the fifth start for MadBum against the Padres, and in the previous meetings he has allowed ten earned runs in 28 1/3 innings, along with 34 strikeouts. This makes Bumgarner an intriguing counter-move against the Clayton Kershaw crowd.
Robbie Ray – ARZ at BAL – $8,300 – Ray has been significantly better on the road this season (15 starts, 3.98 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 19.1 DKPPG), than at home in hitting friendly Chase Field (15 starts, 5.36 ERA, 1.57 WHIP, 14.8 DKPPG). That said, Camden Yards is certainly not a pitching positive environment against the mighty Orioles of Birdland. The one sneaky thing is that the Baltimore batsmen are in the bottom five of most pertinent offensive categories when facing left-handed pitching.
Wei-Yin Chen – MIA vs ATL – $5,500 – Chen provides some much needed salary relief with the top two pitching options being incredibly spendy tonight. In three starts this season against the Braves, the Marlins lefty has posted 16 2/3 innings allowing 18 baserunners and seven earned runs which have been countered by his thirteen strikeouts. The Braves have been the third worst team this season from a scoring efficiency perspective against southpaws and with the lack of name recognition, Chen could be a terrific off-the-board choice.
Joey Votto (1B) – CIN at MIL – $5,300 – Though this is not in the cozy confines of his home stadium, Miller Park is very much a positive hitting venue and the matchup against RHP Taylor Jungman pushes this over the top. On the season in 462 plate appearances in lefty/righty matchups, Votto has a stellar 1.020 OPS, 21 home runs, 23 doubles and three triples for good measure. Jungman broke camp with the Brew Crew, but he was sent to Triple-A in late April and then later dropped to Double-A to work on his pitching philosophy and form.
Trea Turner (2B/OF) – WAS at PIT – $5,300 – The rookie is a luxury at this lofty price point, but his ability to rack up fantasy points with both his bat and his speed make him worth splurging a little.
Corey Seager (SS) – LAD vs COL – $4,600– Though he played last year, he did not get enough at bats to lose his rookie status. Seager has been amazing this season against right-handed pitching with a .408 wOBA and a .230 ISO in 445 plate appearances. He has nice upside even at this price against RHP Chad Bettis.
Kyle Seager (3B) – SEA at MIN – $4,500 – Clearly it runs in the family as older brother Kyle Seager has been amazing this season in lefty/righty matchups with a .393 wOBA and a .240 ISO in 404 plate appearances, and he gets a great matchup against RHP Tyler Duffey who has been crushed with an 11.2 ERA in his last four starts.
Nelson Cruz (OF) – SEA at MIN – $4,400 – Tyler Duffey is the worst pitcher on the day against right-handed hitters with a .391 wOBA allowed and 20 home runs across his last 408 same-handed matchups. Cruz is an equal-opportunity masher against all pitcher handedness.
Paul Goldschmidt (1B) – ARZ at BAL – $5,700 – Goldy against a lefty in a hitters park is something we can all enjoy. This season against southpaws he has mashed with 14 extra base hits in 116 at bats, which works out to a .447 wOBA. If we are in need of a catching option, we should see teammate Welington Castillo – $4,200 in the lineup on Saturday night and he too is an effective hitter against lefties.
Brian Dozier (2B) – MIN vs SEA – $5,500 – Dozier is closing in on the all-time home run record for batters while playing second base. On the season he has 42 blasts (a couple have come while he was serving as the designated hitter) and with his propensity to crush southpaws, we have to like him in this matchup against young LHP Ariel Miranda.
Justin Turner (3B) – LAD vs COL – $4,100 – Turner excels in same-handed matchups, posting a .413 wOBA this season against right-handed pitchers.
T.J. Rivera (2B/3B) – NYM vs ATL – $3,400 – Rivera has been excellent over his last ten games with a double and three home runs. This is an adequate matchup against RHP Alec Asher and he will likely be in the middle of the Mets batting order.
Yulieski Gurriel (1B/3B) – HOU vs LAA – $2,700 – The former Cuban Leaguer has been finding himself in prominent positions in the batting order for the Athletics as the season is winding down, and tonight he will be facing RHP Jhoulys Chacin who has been solid over his last couple starts, but is still sporting a 5.30 ERA on the season.
Andrew Toles (OF) – LAD vs COL – $2,300 – If rookie Andrew Toles is in the lineup in a lefty/righty matchup against RHP Chad Bettis he will provide some much needed salary relief which will aid us in reaching up for the top-shelf pitching options.
Josh Bell (1B/OF) – PIT vs WAS – $2,600 – Despite being a switch-hitter, Bell is usually lifted when a southpaw comes into the game for the opposition. He should not have to worry too much about that against the Nationals with RHP Joe Ross Jr. taking the bump.
Cameron Rupp (CATCH) – PHI at NYM – $3,000 – Rupp has been terrific this season in righty/lefty matchups with a .426 wOBA and a .320 ISO in 70 plate appearances. He is an excellent discount dandy who can fill the backstop role at a bargain price.
J.J. Hardy – BAL vs ARZ – $3,200 – The veteran shortstop is usually batting in the bottom third of the Orioles order, however, he does have multi-home run upside for a low price tag.
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.