There are just some slates where the pitching isn’t top of the line, and this is one of those slates. There’s very little meat on the bone here, with a few high upside options but little to no high floor safety option to fall back on. It is an interesting tournament slate though, with some sneaky upside sprinkled in. Let’s dig in.
Top 5 Pitchers
1) Drew Pomeranz – BOS vs. SF – $10,600 – Drew Pomeranz makes his Red Sox debut tonight against a familiar foe from the NL West, the San Francisco Giants. Pomeranz is not only the biggest favorite on the board, he offers the highest upside as well due to his slate-best 28% strikeout rate. The Giants are a pretty decent contact team but our options are extremely limited today.
2) Michael Pineda – NYY vs. BAL – $7,700 – The epitome of tournament only, Pineda continues to allow hard contact and faces an Orioles lineup with the highest isolated power mark in the league against right-handers. His huge 27.2% K-rate pairs nicely with Baltimore’s 23% mark, and he’s priced at a spot where he might be worth a shot. His true talent indicators show a very different story than his 5.56 ERA.
3) Jeremy Hellickson – PHI vs. MIA – $7,500 – There’s not a lot to get excited about here with Hellickson, but he’s in play if you’re playing cash games today. The Marlins are in the bottom third offensively against right-handed pitching and Hellickson’s been pretty consistent over his past five outings.
4) Gio Gonzalez – WSH vs. LAD – $7,300 – You never feel safe when rolling out Gio Gonzalez, but his matchup is favorable against a Dodgers club that is second to last in wRC+ against lefties this year. Per usual, Gio’s been a roller coaster of late and it’s nearly impossible to decipher when he’ll have a good start or bad one.
5) Jaime Garcia – STL vs. SD – $7,900 – Truthfully I hate this spot for Jaime Garcia, but he’s the best option left. He’s facing a sneaky-good Padres club who rank second in wRC+ against lefties this season, but they do strike out a lot. So the angle on Garcia is he misses some bats and gives you 6 solid innings at best.
6) Wei-Yin Chen – MIA vs. PHI – $6,800 – If Wei-Yin Chen can miss any bats today I have him ranked too low. I’m not sure he can though. It’s a decent spot against a struggling Phillies lineup that ranks dead-last against lefties on the season, but Chen’s been putting up duds of late when he’s in a plus spot. His two appearances against Philadelphia this season have been a mixed bag at best.
7) Jeff Locke – PIT vs. MIL – $5,600 – It’s been two months since Jeff Locke struck out more than three batters in a game. TWO MONTHS! But here we are. The good news is that he could break that terrible streak tonight against the Brewers, who’s 24.2% K-rate against left-handed pitching is the second highest mark in baseball.
8) Hector Santiago – LAA vs. TEX – $8,000 – The Rangers are ultra-aggressive and rarely walk, so perhaps that mitigates a bit of the risk tied to Hector Santiago, but that aggressive approach can be damning to a fly ball southpaw as well. The Rangers have a few bats that have feasted on lefties this season like Ryan Rua and Ian Desmond.
9) Bud Norris – LAD vs. WSH – $6,100 – I’m just not buying the Bud Norris’ resurgence. He’s been decent lately and is priced well on this slate, but against a patient and potent Nationals lineup I think Bud comes back down to Earth a bit.
10) Martin Perez – TEX vs. LAA – $4,000 – I have to rank ten pitchers. That’s the only excuse I can make for putting Martin Perez here folks. There’s a chance that he doesn’t record a single strikeout tonight with his non-existent K-rate going head-to-head with the Angels’ league-low 15.1% whiff rate versus lefties. I don’t recommend selecting Perez.
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.