Last night’s DraftKings MLB DFS Picks produced up and down the lineup and was one of the more consistent set of picks we have seen as of late.
Our top starter Mike Clevinger was very good, pitching seven innings of one-run ball while striking out five. The problem was that Indians’ closer Cody Allen surrendered a game-tying home run to Miguel Sano in the ninth inning, which ripped a win right out of Clevinger’s hands. We got the raw end of the deal there.
Our second starter Jhoulys Chacin was solid, if unspectacular. Chacin hurled six innings of three-run ball, but he only struck out three. While we wanted more strikeouts, Chacin got plenty of run support and notched his 11th win of the season with the quality start.
Our bats did some damage, especially with the long ball. The Brewers got to work early on Padres’ rookie Brett Kennedy as Jesus Aguilar hit a three-run homer in the first inning while Travis Shaw followed that up with a solo homer of his own. Lorenzo Cain enjoyed a two-hit night and stole a base while Mike Moustakas also had a pair of hits and a run scored.
Our Braves didn’t do quite as well, but Tyler Flowers provided value with a two-run homer of his own. Both Adam Duvall and Johan Camargo contributed a hit and a run scored on the night.
Unfortunately, despite the Red Sox beating up on the Blue Jays for 10 runs, Jackie Bradley Jr. was the only Sox bat to go hitless on the night. What can ya do?
All in all it was a real solid night with our picks as we move onto tonight’s small six-game main slate!
P – Justin Verlander (HOU) – $12,400 vs. SEA
Verlander had a couple of five-run outings over a four-start stretch not too long ago, but he’s been utterly dominant over his last three starts, something that should carry over into tonight’s matchup at home against the Mariners. Verlander has allowed only three earned runs with a whopping 32 strikeouts over his last three starts, spanning 18.2 innings. He is coming off a brilliant effort against the Dodgers in Los Angeles where he spun 7.2 frames of one-run ball to go along with a whopping 14 punchouts. With an elite 2.19 ERA and an eye-popping 33.7% strikeout clip on the season, I am locking in JV as my top arm of the night.
P – Andrew Suarez (SF) – $5,100 vs. PIT
The price is right on Suarez, a left-handed pitcher who has had nice success this season at home where he will face the Pirates this evening. Suarez has pitched to a solid 3.64 ERA at home this season, compared to a 5.61 mark on the road. His strikeout rate jumps from 19.7% on the road to a solid 22.3% mark at home. Also of note is the fact that the Pirates are projected to score just 3.8 runs tonight in the spacious confines of AT&T Park in San Francisco. With J.A. Happ coming off the DL, Ross Stripling pitcher at Coors Field and James Paxton facing a tough Astros team, I decided to pay way down and attempt to snatch some value out of the southpaw Suarez tonight.
C – Austin Barnes (LAD) – $3,500 vs. COL
Barnes hasn’t been a great play for the majority of the year after enjoying a breakout 2017 campaign. He’s hit just one home run this season across 190 plate appearances and owns a tiny .044 ISO on the season despite posting a real nice .197 mark a year ago. That said, Barnes’ average goes from .149 against righties to a decent .247 mark against lefties while his .653 OPS against lefties is well above his tiny .483 mark against righties. He’s also doubled in 11 career at-bats against Rockies southpaw Tyler Anderson, and I am hoping the Coors Field effect can help Barnes as he owns a very nice .914 career OPS at this venue.
1B – Ji-Man Choi (TB) – $3,700 vs. BAL
The Rays get the most targetable pitcher on the slate tonight as they take on Orioles right-hander David Hess at Tropicana Field in Tampa Bay. Hess has been throttled for a 6.41 ERA on the season while his 6.45 FIP suggests he deserves every bit of that ERA figure. He’s also yielding a whopping 2.19 HR/9 on the season. Enter Choi who could be a lower-owned commodity on the slate, but he does boast solid power against right-handed pitching. Choi has bounced around a little bit, but this season he owns a real solid .188 ISO against righties and posted a .918 OPS against righties at Triple-A last season. Choi owns a powerful .204 career ISO against righties at the MLB level, so don’t sleep on his power tonight against Hess.
2B – Joey Wendle (TB) – $4,100 vs. BAL
Next man up in the Rays stack is Wendle who brings a fair amount of power and speed upside to the table tonight against Hess. Wendle has hit all six of his homers and all 13 of his doubles this season against right-handed pitching while he’s also stolen eight bases on the season. Wendle has enjoyed a big summer with a powerful .213 ISO and 1.009 OPS in July followed up by a .200 ISO and 1.055 OPS in the month of August. He owns a .916 OPS since the All-Star break and has three multi-hit efforts over his last five games, including a homer. He is projected to hit in the cleanup spot tonight so look for Wendle to have plenty of RBI opportunities tonight.
3B – Matt Duffy (TB) – $4,000 vs. BAL
Duffy doesn’t hit for a ton of home run power with just four long balls on the season, but he gets on base a lot, at a .352 clip to be exact. The nice thing is that Duffy hits righties just as well as he hits lefties as he owns a .301 average against righties compared to a .303 mark against southpaws. The fact that he gets on base a lot often has him hitting in the two-hole for Kevin Cash’s club, something that could provide him with plenty of run-scoring opportunities tonight against a weak pitcher. Let’s look for him to get on base and score some runs as the table setter for this Rays stack tonight.
SS – Kike Hernandez (LAD) – $4,300 vs. COL
Hernandez worked on hitting righties better in the offseason, something that has worked as he owns some reverse splits on the season after obliterating lefties last season and struggling against righties. That said, Hernandez still owns a powerful .184 ISO against southpaws on the season, and the Coors Field effect should help him obtain more power tonight. Like is often the case against southpaws, Hernandez should hit in the cleanup spot tonight, a valueable spot for sure as the Dodgers are projected to score the second highest amount of runs on the slate at 5.6. He has just four hits in 21 at-bats against Anderson, but each of them has gone for extra-bases with a homer, a triple and two doubles against the lefty, good for a huge .333 ISO.
OF – Matt Kemp (LAD) – $4,200 vs. COL
Kemp is mired in a rut at the moment, but facing a left-handed pitcher at Coors Field should cure what ails him. Kemp has clobbered left-handed pitching this season to the tune of a huge .294 ISO and .923 OPS on the campaign, and he’s also enjoyed previous career success against Anderson. The veteran outfielder is 4 for 9 with a homer against the Rockies’ southpaw. Kemp has just two hits in his last 10 starts, but one of those was an RBI single in his most recent start, so perhaps we can catch him on the upswing after snapping his cold streak at the plate.
OF – Jakob Bauers (TB) – $4,400 vs. BAL
Completing our four-man Rays stack is the rookie Bauers who certainly has some pop in that bat. Bauers enters tonight’s contest, Bauer has clobbered righties for a big .248 ISO and .839 OPS on the season, while also posting a big .356 OBP and .361 wOBA against righties, partially thanks to a solid batters’ eye at the plate. He’s continued to hit for power in the second half of the season after bursting onto the scene in June as he owns an overall .238 ISO in the second half. He makes for a high-upside play out of the three-hole tonight against Hess.
OF – Steve Pearce (BOS) – $4,300 vs. TOR
A one-off to complete our lineup, Pearce has some real nice power upside against Blue Jays lefty Ryan Borucki tonight at the Rogers Centre in Toronto. Pearce has obliterated lefties to the tune of a .294 ISO and 1.068 OPS on the season to go along with a hefty .353 batting average. Pearce has never faced Borucki in his career, and the young southpaw hasn’t allowed a big league homer in his 43 innings this season, Pearce is certainly a candidate to take the youngster yard this evening.