Last night’s DraftKings MLB DFS Picks were solid, if unspectacular. We received some low-owned value production in the lineup, and we also got absolutely robbed of some valuable fantasy points with our top pitcher. At the end of the day, the lineup wasn’t enough to get us into profit territory.
Aaron Nola, for the second time in a week, dominated the Nationals as he bolstered his NL Cy Young case with seven innings of one-run ball to go along with eight strikeouts. Nola had the Phillies ahead 3-2 at the time of his departure (he allowed an unearned run on a throwing error by Carlos Santana), however the Phillies’ bullpen promptly surrendered three runs in the top of the ninth before the Phillies ended the game on a baserunning blunder in the bottom half. You can’t make this stuff up.
Our second starter, as expected, provided us fantastic value as Jake Junis once again dominated a paltry Tigers offense. Junis hurled a complete game over the Tigers while allowing only two earned runs. He struck out seven and notched his seventh win of the season in the process.
Our Astros stack didn’t do much for us as they were cooled off by Edwin Jackson and the Oakland A’s with the only notable damage here coming from a two-run double from the white-hot Alex Bregman.
Lastly, our four-man Rays stack provided a little bit of value as Brandon Lowe hit a two-run homer at minuscule ownership while the remainder of the stack went 3 for 10 with two RBI. Still, this production wasn’t enough to get us into the money on a maximum 15-game slate.
Let’s get a more consistent lineup going on tonight’s nine-game main slate!
P – Dereck Rodriguez (SF) – $9,500 vs. ARI
Rodriguez has quietly thrown his hat into the National League rookie of the year conversation, and while he likely won’t win that award with the seasons Juan Soto and Ronald Acuna are enjoying, he has certainly surprised to the upside so far. Rodriguez enters tonight’s contest against the D-backs sporting a tidy 2.30 ERA on the season to go along with a nice 3.10 FIP as well. Rodriguez doesn’t strikeout a ton of batters with a 20.1% strikeout clip, but there’s little doubt he’s been excellent in preventing runs so far. His matchup against the Diamondbacks is a sneaky-good one as Arizona ranks 25th with a .703 OPS against righties and 29th with a paltry .599 OPS over the last week. Also working in Rodriguez’s favor are the pitching-friendly confines of AT&T Park in San Francisco.
P – Alex Cobb (BAL) – $6,400 vs. TOR
Cobb was far off of the DFS radar during his immense struggles earlier in the year, but he has actually been very good in the month of August and I think he can provide some more value tonight at home against the Jays. Cobb’s overall numbers aren’t going to look pretty, but he has compiled an elite 1.80 ERA across five starts spanning 35 innings in the month of August. When we factor in that two of those starts were against the Yankees, one against the Red Sox and one against the Indians, the top three offenses in baseball, this run of excellent outings becomes even more impressive. Cobb also isn’t a big-time strikeout guy, but he has risen his strikeout rate to 18.5% this month compared to his 15.6% mark for the season.
C – Austin Romine (NYY) – $3,700 vs. CWS
Romine has actually hit with plenty of pop this season against both lefties and righties, and I like his matchup tonight against right-hander Reynaldo Lopez, especially considering Lopez has been worse against right-handed hitters this season. After spending most of his career as a defense-first backup, Romine has taken advantage of the Gary Sanchez injury this season and produced a real solid .182 ISO and .741 OPS at the dish against righties. He’s clubbed seven of his nine homers for the year against righties while seven of his 12 doubles have come against righties. At low ownership as part of a Yankees club projected to score a slate-high six runs tonight, I will take the veteran backstop at an attractive price.
1B – Luke Voit (NYY) – $3,800 vs. CWS
We will quickly complete our Yankees mini-stack here with Voit who is sporting some notable reverse splits this season and has a history of hitting right-handers for plenty of power in the minor leagues. In a small 24 at-bat sample against righties this season in the big leagues, Voit has produced an eye-popping .375 ISO and 1.194 OPS with three home runs in those 24 at-bats. In his career across 107 at-bats against righties, Voit has produced a .206 ISO and .821 OPS against right-handed pitching. Finally, against righties in the minors this year, he has a .940 OPS after posting a .948 OPS last year. I think we are in good hands with a sneaky-good mini-stack tonight.
2B – Brian Dozier (LAD) – $4,400 vs. TEX
The Dodgers pummelled the Rangers last night and are now the league’s fourth-hottest team in terms of OPS over the last week with a mark of .854. Dozier got in on last night’s action with a home run as part of a two-hit night and he brings more cross-category upside to the plate tonight against left-hander Mike Minor out of that valueable leadoff spot for an offense pegged at 5.5 runs scored tonight. Dozier hasn’t lit the world on fire since coming over to the Dozier in a deadline deal with the Twins, but he does have a nice .816 OPS and four homers and three steals across 87 at-bats with his new club. I like his upside tonight against a pitcher who has been prone to blowups this season.
3B – Justin Turner (LAD) – $5,300 vs. TEX
Turner is a lock for me tonight against a left-hander as he has crushed lefties once again this season despite fighting a couple of different ailments throughout the year. The third baseman has clobbered southpaws for a .370 average, .247 ISO and 1.081 OPS so far on the campaign, a year after hitting southpaws for a .380 average, .324 ISO and 1.181 OPS against lefties in the 2017 season. Turner is also white-hot at the dish entering play tonight as he has gone 9 for his last 21 with a homer, four doubles, five runs scored and nine RBI over his last four games. There’s no way I am excluding the lefty-masher from my lineup considering the matchup and recent production.
SS – Manny Machado (LAD) – $5,200 vs. TEX
Machado has officially caught his stride as a member of the Dodgers and has been producing long balls at an incredible rate as of late. Machado has went deep five times over his last 10 games including twice over his last three games with two runs scored and a whopping nine RBI over that span as well. Machado has also added stolen bases back into his repertoire as he has swiped 13 bases on the season after recording just nine all of last year and zero the year before. Machado is 1 for 2 with a homer in his career against Minor so he’s an easy add into my stack against the southpaw tonight.
OF – Matt Kemp (LAD) – $4,200 vs. TEX
Kemp has still scuffled a little bit at the plate, however in his most recent start he doubled as part of a two-hit game, so perhaps we can catch him on the upswing against a lefty tonight. Against lefties this season, Kemp has mashed for a .250 ISO and .863 OPS. Those numbers have actually increased on the road to a huge .292 ISO and .876 OPS against lefties away from Dodger stadium. He hasn’t played since that two-hit game on Sunday, but he’s currently projected to hit in the cleanup spot so some RBI opportunities are likely on the horizon for the bounce back veteran tonight.
OF – Jake Cave (MIN) – $3,800 vs. CLE
We are going to finish this lineup off with a couple of one-off outfielders, beginning here with Cave. Cave has hit for plenty of power since his big league promotion as he owns a .195 ISO and .805 OPS against right-handers this season and has hit three homers over his last eight games. He’s hitting for a powerful .209 ISO for the month of August so far and takes on a right-hander in Adam Plutko who owns a poor 5.09 ERA and a 5.59 FIP on the season in the big leagues. I like him as a low-owned power threat tonight.
OF – Corey Dickerson (PIT) – $3,700 vs. STL
Miles Mikolas has been good for the Cardinals this season, but Dickerson brings solid cross-category upside to the table nonetheless. He has hit right-handers for a real solid .193 ISO and .814 OPS on the season while he has also stolen seven bases this season, all of which have come against right-handed pitching. All 11 of his home runs have also come against right-handed pitching. Dickerson was white-hit in July, and although he’s scuffled some in August, he’s still 2 for 5 in his career against Mikolas and I think he can provide some upside at what should be low ownership tonight.