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.
Max Scherzer vs Cincinnati Reds ($12,000) – Scherzer has stumbled a bit down the stretch, but still enters today’s game owning a rock solid 2.98 ERA, 0.97 WHIP and posting 249 strikeouts over 211.2 innings. Scherzer’s 29.6 K% is the third highest strikeout rate among starting pitchers this season (trailing just Kershaw and Sale) and should be motivated to revenge a rough outing the only other time he’s faced this Cincinnati team this season. Zack Greinke may be the safer cash game option this evening, but Scherzer can easily match his upside at a $1,000 discount.
J.A. Happ vs St. Louis Cardinals ($7,600) – In a game that will have the look and feel of a playoff game, the Pirates will turn to Happ in attempt to pull closer to the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central Division. The matchup against a team with the best record in baseball may scare many users away, but Happ has posted a 2.28 ERA in nine starts since joined Pittsburgh while racking up 58 strikeouts in 51.1 innings of work. The Cardinals own just a .294 team wOBA against left-handed pitching this season and their 23.5 K% is the second highest strikeout rate in MLB. Happ tossed seven shutout innings in their only previous meeting and makes for a nice bargain in one of your pitcher slots.
Others to Consider: Corey Kluber, Lance McCullers, Hector Santiago
Mike Trout vs Felix Doubront ($5,300) – Trout picked up another hit in yesterday’s game and now finds himself riding an eight game hitting streak into tonight’s battle with the Athletics. Trout has posted a .317 average and .427 wOBA this season against left-handed pitching and, as evidenced by his 40 homeruns, should be well worth his big ticket asking price.
Chris Davis vs Marco Estrada ($4,700) – GPP’s are often won with homeruns, and with Marco Estrada having struggled to keep the ball in the park his entire career, Davis is a text-book GPP target this evening. “Crush” has already launched 43 homeruns and picked up 110 RBI’s this season and his .398 wOBA and .328 ISO against right-handed pitching both highlight his massive upside in this matchup.
Thomas Pham vs J.A. Happ ($3,800) – The Cardinals are hanging on to the lead in the NL Central, in large part, thanks to the production of several of their young outfielders. While Randal Grichuk and Stephen Piscotty certainly deserve a mention, it’s been Tommy Pham swinging the hottest bat lately. Over the last 11 games, Pham owns a .385 average, has scored 11 runs while also picking up 10 RBI’s. He owns a solid .376 wOBA against left-handed pitching and can still be found at a very reasonable asking price.
Neil Walker vs Lance Lynn ($3,100) – If you’re a believer in BvsP, then you’ll love Walker at just $3,100 tonight. Walker has hammered Lance Lynn in their previous meetings; going 14 for 38 with three doubles, two triples and three homeruns. He’s hitting .300 thus far during the month of September and is locked into a run producing spot in this Pirates lineup.
Chris Young vs Eduardo Rodriguez ($2,700) – With a left-hander on the mound for the Red Sox, Chris Young makes for a tremendous value play in the outfield this evening. Due to a .319 average and .412 wOBA against southpaws this season, Young tends to find himself in the cleanup spot for the Yankees when they battle a left-handed pitcher. He’s dirt cheap and offers an upside that very few people in this price-range can match.
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.
Toronto Blue Jays vs Chris Tillman, Baltimore Orioles – Stacking this prolific offense is rarely a bad idea, but with Chris Tillman owning an unsightly 8.39 ERA in five starts this month, they look poised for another big evening. The usual suspects of Jose Bautista, Josh Donaldson and Edwin Encarnacion have all knocked Chris Tillman around in their previous meetings. With plenty of value on the board tonight, it’s not too difficult to squeeze them all into your lineup.
Los Angeles Angels vs Felix Doubront, Oakland Athletics– Stacking this Angels lineup hasn’t been a profitable strategy very often this season, but I’m expecting them to put up some crooked numbers tonight against Felix Doubront. Right-handed batters have posted an ugly .377 wOBA off of Doubront this season and guys like Mike Trout, Albert Pujols, David Freese, C.J. Cron and Chris Iannetta have thrive against left-handed pitching. Doubront has historically been susceptible to the long-ball (1.19 HR/9 this year), so fire them all up.