Well, it was quite a ride last night.
Jacob deGrom got our lineup off to a fantastic start as he hurled seven innings of one-run ball to go along with a whopping 14 strikeouts and left with a 4-1 lead. However, things went sour for a while, beginning with the Mets’ bullpen blowing that lead and costing deGrom a win, yet again.
The disappointment largely continued through the end of the Cardinals game as our stack just didn’t come around. Matt Carpenter was originally scratched from the starting lineup, but was later re-inserted. That said, I had already pivoted and was left with a three-man stack. that was solid, yet unspectacular. Kolen Wong singled, scored, walked twice and notched an RBI. Tommy Edman singled and stole a base while Paul Goldschmidt walked twice, scored a run and knocked in a run. We were without an extra-base hit in this one.
The money was made on a late rally from the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Down 8-1 late, the D-backs teed off on a struggling Rockies’ bullpen and nearly won it, but dropped that game 8-7. Starling Marte led the way with a triple, three runs, an RBI, a single and a hit-by-pitch. Christian Walker knocked in four runs, doubled and notched a pair of base hits. His ninth-inning double with the bases loaded nearly won the game as it hit about a foot from the top of the wall, narrowly missing a walk-off grand slam. David Peralta singled twice, walked and knocked in a run while Kole Calhoun doubled, walked and a scored a run.
My pivot from Carpenter before he was re-inserted at the last minute was Rafael Devers in an excellent matchup with the Jays, but he very surprisingly put up a zero on the night which hurt quite a bit.
Nonetheless, the lineup ended up crossing the GPP cash line with ease as we move onto this six-game main slate.
*Due to potential boycotts, there might not be a slate at all tonight. Several games were boycotted last night, so we will have to be aware of what’s going on as the day moves along.
FanDuel MLB DFS Picks – August 27, 2020
P – Matthew Boyd (DET) – $7,300 vs. MIN
After playing pretty heavily last night, I’m really not sure at this point how much I’ll invest into this slate tonight. However, I’ve put together a lineup I believe can fare well in GPPs and that begins with Boyd against the Minnesota Twins tonight in Detroit.
Boyd has struggled mightily this year, until his last start, that is. He owns an 8.48 ERA on the season, but from there his numbers fall to a 5.85 FIP, 4.60 xFIP and a 4.29 SIERA. No, those are still iffy peripherals at best, but they certainly at least point to regression.
His last time out, Boyd hurled 5.1 frames of one-run ball with six strikeouts. Add in his nine strikeouts despite going just four innings in his previous start against the White Sox and Boyd owns a 14.8 K/9 over his last two starts. Keep in mind his 11.56 K/9 from last season was sixth-best in baseball and he now owns a 10.36 mark this season after those last two outings.
Now, the Twins don’t strike out much against lefties, but they have actually scuffled against them this season, ranking 21st with a .302 wOBA against them, but also rank 29th with a .108 ISO against lefties. A Twins team that brought so much thunder last season has indeed been a light-hitting offense versus lefties this season.
Current Twins bats are hitting just .226 with a .672 OPS and 29.6% K-rate against Boyd in their combined careers, so I am willing to give Boyd a shot in GPPs and look for his season turnaround to continue in a sneaky-good matchup.
C/1B – Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (TOR) – $3,200 vs. BOS
The Blue Jays might not see the lowest of ownership on a small slate, but I love their matchup against the Red Sox and opener Chris Mazza tonight.
Mazza was recalled from the Red Sox’s alternate training site to start this one after he made one start and one relief appearance for the Sox this season, posting a 6.35 ERA/4.57 FIP in that tiny 5.2-inning sample. Mazza pitched 16.1 innings with the Mets last season and posted a 5.51 ERA in that time, but the truth is he is a career minor-league journeyman as he’s 30 years old with just 22 big-league innings under his belt.
Furthermore, the Red Sox just dealt away two of their best relievers and own a 28th-ranked 5.73 bullpen ERA on the season, and we’ll see a big chunk of that group tonight, so the Jays are sitting pretty here.
For his part, Vladdy Jr. has had a solid season so far, posting a .191 ISO, .336 wOBA and 113 wRC+ on the year with four homers, seven doubles and a triple. As he did last year, he’s fared far better versus righties than he has lefties, which bodes well for his matchups with Mazza.
After going 2 for 4 with two doubles, two runs and two RBI in last night’s blowout win over Boston, let’s look for the hot bat to continue here as he brings a nine-game hitting streak into action.
2B – Cavan Biggio (TOR) – $3,900 vs. BOS
Next man up in our four-man Blue Jays stack is Biggio who has been outstanding atop the Blue Jays’ lineup this season.
Biggio owns a .229 ISO, .389 wOBA and 149 wRC+ on the season while he’s hit six home runs and stolen another four bases as well. We saw his power/speed combination last season when he clubbed 16 homers as part of a .195 ISO with 14 steals in his 100 games in 2019, but it appears he’s taking it to a new level in his sophomore season.
The lefty-swinging 25-year-old is actually hitting .361 against left-handed pitching, but the power has been far greater against righties whom he’s tagged for all six of his homers as part of a .288 ISO, .838 OPS, .353 wOBA and 124 wRC+ versus right-handers this season. Of course, the stolen base potential is increased versus righties as he’s swiped three of his four bags against them on the season. Mazza has allowed one steal in his 5.2 innings this season.
At the end of the day, any and all Blue Jays stacks need to involve their leadoff hitter who brings a wealth of cross-category potential to the dish.
3B – Isaac Paredes (DET) – $2,500 vs. MIN
We get some differentiation at third base here Paredes who enters this lineup as a one-off as the Tigers take on right-hander Randy Dobnak of the Twins this evening.
This has little to do with Dobnak as he’s enjoying a real nice season with a 1.78 ERA< but it should be noted that he also owns a 4.08 FIP and xFIP while striking out just 4.75 batters per nine. Add in his 4.43 SIERA and he appears to be in for some big-time regression at some point.
That said, this has more to do with the 21-year-old Paredes who has impressed since getting his big-league promotion.
Known more for his pure hitting skills than raw power – although he hit 13 homers at Double-A last season – Paredes also hit .282 with a .358 wOBA and 133 wRC+ with five steals to boot in 127 games as a 20-year-old. Perhaps more impressive was his 10.3% walk rate versus his minuscule 11.1% strikeout rate. The K-rate in the bigs is at 30% in his eight games, but he’s also walked 13.3% of the time as well as he shows excellent discipline at the plate.
Additionally, he’s hitting .269 with a .348 wOBA and 119 wRC+ so far with a .222 ISO, .808 OPS, .354 wOBA and 123 wRC+ versus right-handed pitching in his small MLB sample so far. His walk rate versus righties stands at 18.2%.
An extremely well-rounded hitters, especially for his age, Paredes could deliver some nice value tonight at low ownership.
SS – Trea Turner (WSH) – $3,900 vs. PHI
The Nationals take on young Phillies right-hander Spencer Howard tonight as well as a Phillies bullpen that’s been the worst in the majors this season, by far.
Howard has scuffled so far in his big-league tenure, turning in a 6.17 ERA/7.02 FIP with a 3.09 HR/9 across his three starts and 11.2 innings so far. He also owns a 5.04 SIERA to boot. Howard has also averaged fewer than four innings per start, so we should see a big chunk of that struggling Phillies bullpen tonight.
Enter Turner who will hit out of the leadoff spot for this one and he brings a .255 ISO, .397 wOBA and 148 wRC+ into this one with six homers and three steals as well. He’s hit both lefties and righties well, but the splits favor righties for sure as he’s hit for a .259 ISO, .962 OPS, .404 wOBA and 153 wRC+ versus right-handed pitching this season while all three of his stolen bases have come against righties. Howard has allowed one steal in 11.2 innings so far this season.
The Phillies have added to their bullpen recently, but still rank dead last by a mile with a 7.52 bullpen ERA on the season and 23rd with a 5.75 ERA over the last week. Look for Turner to deliver that elite power/speed combination in this one tonight.
OF – Juan Soto (WSH) – $4,500 vs. PHI
Of course, Soto is not going to be left out of any Nationals stack tonight, not on my watch.
After missing the beginning of the season with an illness, Soto has absolutely lit the league on fire. All he’s done so far this season is hit eight homers with a .423 ISO, .520 wOBA and 230 wRC+ across his 20 games on the year. He’s also stolen a base, walked more than he’s struck out and has hit .380 on a BABIP of .358. That BABIP is higher than his .326 career mark, but it’s not outrageously high, either. Considering his mammoth 59% hard-hit rate, I’m not sure how much BABIP regression we should expect, but not much, if any.
It’s probably not all that meaningful to talk about his splits as he’s clobbered both lefties and righties, which is a good thing. That said, let’s not that he’s posted a .400 ISO, 1.318 OPS, .535 wOBA and 240 wRC+ against right-handed pitching this season.
He’s probably the NL MVP front-runner right now despite missing some games, but for tonight he’s a must in any cash lineup and/or Nationals stack.
OF – Adam Easton (WSH) – $2,700 vs. PHI
That’s a tough act for Adam Eaton to follow, but this guy brings some decent power/speed potential to the lineup tonight himself.
Eaton has homered three times and swiped one base this season on the heels of a 2019 season in which he homered 15 times with 15 steals in his 151 games of action. Of course, those aren’t some eye-popping numbers, especially the home run total, but I like the fact he brings stolen base potential to the table as young pitchers often have a difficult time holding the running game in check in their first taste of big-league action.
That said, the power has been prevalent lately as he went 4 for 9 with two homers, three runs and four RBI over a two-game stretch before going hitless in yesterday’s contest.
The most important thing here is the fact he’s posted a .200 ISO, .831 OPS, .354 wOBA and 120 wRC+ on the season against righties, so let’s look for the veteran to take advantage of the rookie to start this one tonight.
OF – Randal Grichuk (TOR) – $3,300 vs. BOS
We’ll now complete our four-man Blue Jays stack here with Grichuk who has been flexing some serious muscle this season.
We knew he had notable power after posting an ISO figure of at least .225 in each of his last five seasons, but Grichuk has powered up even more this season with eight home runs as part of his .287 ISO on the season. He’s also hitting .307 with a .394 wOBA and 152 wRC+ as he’s been a big all-round surprise at the plate for the Jays this season.
Last season, he hit both lefties and righties for power. This season, that’s once again the case, although he’s absolutely raked left-handed pitching. He still owns an even .200 ISO against righties, but also a .444 ISO, 1.308 OPS, .538 wOBA and 250 wRC+ against lefties. He’s been slightly better versus lefties in his career, but also owns a very strong .242 ISO versus righties and his career splits are far more even than they are this season, so look for those to even out a bit moving forward.
He’s red-hot at the plate, going 7 for 19 with two doubles and two homers over his last four games, so let’s get him into this lineup out of the projected two-hole tonight.
UTIL – Teoscar Hernandez (TOR) – $3,600 vs. BOS
Completing our lineup and our Blue Jays stack tonight is Hernandez who has been marvellous for the Blue Jays this season, at least at the plate.
Hernandez already has 11 home runs on the season and he’s posted a .349 ISO, .987 OPS, .407 wOBA and 161 wRC+ on the season. Like with Grichuk, the numbers have been better versus lefties, but not actually by that much as he’s still posted a monster .321 ISO, .981 OPS, .406 wOBA and 160 wRC+ versus right-handed pitching this season.
Hernandez also brings some stolen base potential to this lineup as he’s swiped four bases on the season – all against right-handed pitching.
Hernandez brings an eight-game hitting streak into action while he’s homered four times over that stretch with a pair of stolen bases to boot.
With a projected 6-run total tongiht, look for this Blue Jays stack to hop all over Mazza as well as a weak and watered-down Red Sox bullpen.