Tournament Plays are written to help find high-risk, high-reward players and team stacks that can help you catapult up the leaderboard each day. Plays will range from sleepers who might be able to steal a few bases at a low price point to against-the-grain stars who might not be the popular play of the day on DraftKings.
Chris Sale vs Toronto Blue Jays ($12,700) – The combination of a tough matchup and a high asking price should finally suppress the ownership levels of Chris Sale tonight, and that makes him an ideal GPP candidate. The White Sox southpaw has racked up double-digit strikeouts in each of his last eight starts and his 34.6 K% and 2.19 SIERA are both the best in MLB among qualified starters this season. He’s been dominant at U.S. Cellular Field (2.32 ERA and 0.96 WHIP) and undoubtedly has the highest ceiling on the board tonight.
A.J. Burnett vs San Diego Padres ($9,400) – Burnett just keeps rolling and now sports a 7-3 record with a 2.05 ERA through his first 16 starts of the season. He’ll face a Padres team that owns just a .280 wOBA (third worst in MLB) over the last 30 days at PNC Park where Burnett has posted a sparkling 1.29 ERA in seven home starts. With the Padres owning the league’s fourth highest strikeout rate against right-handed pitching (22.3%), Burnett looks like a nice option at this 9.4K price-point.
Others: Dallas Keuchel ($9,700), Carlos Carrasco ($10,200), Jon Lester ($9,000)
Bryce Harper vs Anthony DeSclafani, Cincinnati Reds ($5,700) – He’s the most expensive hitter on the board, so it’s unlikely that his ownership level will be through the roof tonight. However, Harper has posted a ridiculous .506 wOBA and 230 wRC+ against right-handed pitching this season and looked locked in at the plate over the weekend. Harper owns a .355 average and 1.258 OPS at Nationals Park and can easily pay off this big-ticket asking price.
Buster Posey vs. Jonathan Niese, New York Mets ($4,500) – Posey enters tonight’s game sporting a .327 average and .953 OPS during his career against left-handed pitching and is one of the top catching options on the board this evening. He’s had success off of Niese in the past, going 8 for 22 with a pair of doubles and a homerun off of the left-hander in their previous meetings. He’ll put his eleven game hitting streak on the line and has as much upside as any other catcher on the board.
Adam Lind vs. Matt Wisler, Atlanta Braves ($4,500) – With an unproven right-hander on the mound for the Braves tonight, I love Adam Lind. He launched a homerun for the second straight game in yesterday’s game and now owns an impressive .404 wOBA and 158 wRC+ against right-handed pitching this season. He sports a .343 average and .993 at the very hitter friendly Miller Park and yet still sports a very reasonable asking price.
Neil Walker vs. James Shields, San Diego Padres ($4,100) – While James Shields is not a pitcher you’d usually want to pick on, he has allowed left-handed batters to post a .402 wOBA off of him this season. Walker has really heated up at the plate lately and now owns a .469 average during his current nine game hitting streak. He’s cheap, hits high in this Pirates batting order, and is well protected with Andrew McCutchen batting directly behind him.
Justin Turner vs. Sean O’Sullivan, Philadelphia Phillies ($3,900) – Picking on Sean O’Sullivan likely won’t be rare tonight, but it’s still tough to fade Turner at this $3,900 asking price. Over the last calendar year, only Paul Goldschmidt and Bryce Harper have a higher wOBA than Turner’s .424 wOBA and the right-hander owns an absurd .468 wOBA and 208 wRC+ this season against right-handed pitching. He owns a .344 average and 1.052 OPS this season at Dodger Stadium and will be a staple in both my cash and GPP lineups.
Stack Em Up
Stacks below are based on most likely lineups. Be sure to check the MLB Lineups feed from any DraftKings draft screen throughout the afternoon to make sure players are in the lineup.
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Sean O’Sullivan, Philadelphia Phillies – They should be a popular stack, but for good reason. Sean O’Sullivan enters tonight’s action owning an unsightly 5.76 ERA and 1.58 WHIP and this Dodgers team owns MLB’s best team wOBA against right-handed pitching (.338 wOBA). Left-handed batters have posted a .477 wOBA off of O’Sullivan this season, making Adrian Gonzalez, Joc Pederson, Yasmani Grandal and Andre Ethier all terrific options. Thrown in the aforementioned Justin Turner, and you have a very dangerous stack.
Seattle Mariners vs. Alfredo Simon, Detroit Tigers – The Mariners have been very quiet offensively lately, but Alfredo Simon has been tagged for 18 earned runs over his last three starts and his struggles against left-handed batters (.365 wOBA against) will be on full display against this left-handed loaded Mariners lineup. Simon owns an ugly 5.03 ERA away from Detroit this season and could run into some trouble against the likes of Robinson Cano, Kyle Seager, Seth Smith and Nelson Cruz in the middle of the Seattle batting order.
St. Louis Cardinals vs Jon Lester, Chicago Cubs – While Lester is undeniably an above average pitcher, he does own an uninspiring 1.33 WHIP on the season. With the wind forecasted to be blowing out at Wrigley Field tonight, there should be some runs to be had here for the Cardinals. Mike Matheny will likely roll with a right-handed heavy lineup tonight, creating some huge value in a stack consisting of the following; Jhonny Peralta ($3,600), Mark Reynolds ($2,600), Yadier Molina ($3,100), Randal Grichuk ($3,200) and Tommy Pham ($2,000)