Last night’s DraftKings MLB DFS Picks were absolutely sensational and did some serious damage in both cash and GPP tournaments!
Our top starter Ross Stripling twirled yet another gem as he tossed six shutout innings to go along with five strikeouts en route to a win over the lowly San Diego Padres.
We got massive value out of our second starter in the form of the Pirates’ Jameson Taillon. Taillon spun six innings of one-run ball, but he also punched out 10 Brewers and earned his sixth win of the season in the process. I mentioned in yesterday’s piece that I couldn’t believe his price was so low at just $5,700, and we cashed in big-time on Taillon’s effort.
Our Pirates stack also did some serious damage. While Francisco Cervelli didn’t get the nod, the three other Pirates in our lineup combined to go 5 for 7 including a double with five runs scored, five RBI, five walks and a stolen base. Some home runs would have been nice, but what value we extracted out of three players that were all priced at $3,600 or under. Jordy Mercer led the way with three hits, a run, four RBI and a steal.
We also received big-time production from the Red Sox as Mookie Betts hit a grand slam and knocked in five runs total. Unfortunately, Steve Pearce left the game with a bruised shin after being hit by a pitch in his lone at-bats.
It was the best lineup we’ve had in a long time and it certainly would have performed in a big way in GPPs.
Let’s move on to Friday night’s jam-packed 15-game slate!
P – Rick Porcello (BOS) – $9,800 vs. TOR
This slate isn’t exactly rich on pitching and I am expecting the pitching ownership to be spread out with all of the second and third tier starters on this slate. That said, I am going to roll with Porcello at the top of my list thanks to his performance this year and win probability. Porcello has pitched to a very healthy 3.58 ERA while his 3.48 FIP supports that strong ERA figure. He is striking out opposing hitters at a solid 22.7% clip to boot. The Red Sox have won 10 straight games and their offense owns a massive .964 team OPS over the last week, so I expect plenty of run support for Porcello which should land him in the win column tonight at home.
P – Carlos Martinez (STL) – $8,100 vs. CIN
There are a lot of pitchers that can work for our second starter tonight, but I like Martinez for a couple of reasons. First, he’s pitched real well this season with a 3.05 ERA to go along with a nice 3.57 FIP while he’s punched out opposing bats at a healthy 22% clip. Second, Martinez has pitched even better at home this season with a sparkling 2.38 ERA at Busch Stadium. Martinez also keeps the ball in the yard at a fantastic 0.32 HR/9 clip this season, which equates to three homers allowed in 85.2 innings of work. I also like the fact the Reds are projected to score just 3.9 runs tonight, so I am liking Martinez’s upside at a very attractive price.
C – Salvador Perez (KC) – $3,700 vs. CWS
James Shields has been a little better this season than in years past, but I am going to target him with a Royals offense that has been very good as of late. Kansas City owns a healthy .773 OPS (12th) and .174 ISO (9th) over the last seven days, and I think we could get them at low ownership against a subpar pitcher. Perez doesn’t bring a lot of on-base skills to the table, but has plenty of pop in that bat with 12 homers and 13 doubles on the season while he is coming off a two-hit game that included a homer in Minnesota on Wednesday. He also has a pair of doubles in just nine at-bats in his career against Shields.
1B – Lucas Duda (KC) – $3,700 vs. CWS
I am loving Duda’s upside tonight against Shields. While Shields has actually allowed more damage to right-handed bats than he has to lefties, Duda’s power against righties combined with his impressive history against Shields makes him a real sneaky-good play on this large slate. Duda is once again hitting right-handed pitching for plenty of power with a nice .194 ISO and .818 OPS on the season against righties while he owns a very powerful .273 ISO for the month of July. Furthermore, Duda is 4 for 12 (.333) with two homers and a double in his career against Shields, making him a solid play at a solid price tonight.
2B – Whit Merrifield (KC) – $4,000 vs. CWS
Merrifield continues our stack against Shields as he brings solid power/speed upside to the table tonight. His .128 ISO for the year is down compared to the .172 mark he posted in his breakout 2017 season, and he hits left-handed pitching for much more power than righties. That said, Merrifield has stolen 16 bases already this season, which is why we want him in this lineup. If he can get on base, steal a base and score a run, that’s an excellent way to start this stack. I firmly believe the Royals will get to Shields tonight.
3B – Mike Moustakas (KC) – $4,600 vs. CWS
Moustakas is hitting for massive power right now and he has also enjoyed plenty of career success against the right-hander Shields. For the season, Moustakas is hitting right-handed pitching to the tune of a .263 ISO and .854 OPS. He is coming off a three-hit, two-homer game against the Twins on Wednesday while the veteran third baseman owns a huge .294 ISO for the month of July. He’s also hit a home run five times in his last 11 games. In his career against Shields, Moustakas is 6 for 13 (.462) with a homer and a double to go along with a pair of walks. He hits his homers in bunches, so let’s roll with Moustakas while he’s hot.
SS – Andrelton Simmons (LAA) – $3,500 vs. LAD
I found myself needing a low-cost mini-stack at shortstop and outfield after filling out my lineup today, and I believe I have identified a very high-upside one beginning here with Simmons. He brings solid power/speed upside to the table with five homers and five steals on the year. That said, the best part about Simmons tonight is he is projected to hit in the two-hole, one spot ahead of Mike Trout. Considering Simmons owns a .314 batting average, .361 OBP and an .800 OPS against right-handed pitching this season (something he will see against right-hander Walker Buehler), I like the odds of him getting on base in front of the best hitter in baseball.
OF – Kole Calhoun (LAA) – $2,900 vs. LAD
Calhoun is still priced like he is slumping, but that’s just not the case. Yes, the season-long numbers are still very poor, but Calhoun has picked it up to the tune of a massive .314 ISO and .908 OPS in the month of July. Furthermore, Calhoun is projected to hit in the leadoff spot tonight, which means he too is hitting in front of Trout. Buehler has been good this season, but this is his first start since being shelled for five runs in just one inning prior to hitting the DL on June 28th. Calhoun also brings a little bit of stolen base upside with him with four steals on the season. I love his value upside at this price.
OF – David Peralta (ARI) – $4,700 vs. ATL
Peralta is quietly having an unreal season for the D-backs and has excellent upside against Braves’ right-hander Anibal Sanchez tonight. Sanchez has a FIP almost double his ERA at home, so he is due to be blasted at SunTrust Park, and I think that happens tonight. Peralta enters tonight’s contest sporting a very impressive .249 ISO and .950 OPS on the season against right-handed pitching and has been knocking in plenty of runs lately with seven RBI over his last three starts. Love this upside in a hitter-friendly park for left-handed bats.
OF – A.J. Pollock (ARI) – $4,500 vs. ATL
I am pumped about the upside of this mini-stack against Sanchez who is certainly due for some regression, especially at home. Pollock brings fantastic power/speed upside to the table tonight as he’s hit 12 homers and swiped nine bases despite logging less than 200 plate appearances on the season. He hits lefties for more power than righties, but it’s safe to say his .271 ISO and .899 OPS against right-handed pitching is nothing to scoff at. I am looking for big-time production from this D-backs mini-stack this evening in Atlanta.