I didn’t get a DraftKings MLB DFS Picks piece out yesterday as it was Canada Day, arguably the biggest holiday of year here in Canada.
That said, let’s dive right back into some picks and see if we can cash in early in the week on a jam-packed 15-game slate!
P – Patrick Corbin (WAS) – $11,100 vs. MIA
It can certainly be argued that Corbin has the best matchup on this slate as he takes on the lowly Miami Marlins tonight at home. Home has been Corbin has been at his best this season as he enters this one sporting a 3.71 ERA, 3.73 FIP and 3.87 xFIP overall, numbers that drop to a a 2.17 ERA, 2.71 FIP and a 3.45 xFIP at Nationals Park this season. Corbin’s strikeout numbers are strong with a 10.06 K/9 on the season, a number that dips slightly to a 9.60 mark at home. That said, these Marlins are actually a tough team to strike out if you’re a lefty as their 20.9% strikeout clip versus southpaws is the eight-best mark in the big leagues. That said, Corbin didn’t have too much of a hard time striking out Marlins in his last start as he punched out nine across seven innings of one-run ball his last time out. Considering the Marlins rank 29th with a .276 wOBA against lefties and with the Nationals listed as -200 favorites to win this one on the moneyline tonight. I like chances of a repeat of his work his last time out against this light-hitting Marlins club.
P – Charlie Morton (TB) – $10,600 vs. BAL
Another high-ceiling arm in a wonderful matchup tonight is veteran Charlie Morton as he lines up to take on the Baltimore Orioles at home this evening. Morton has been among the best pitchers in baseball this season as he’ll enter this one sporting a 2.43 ERA, 2.92 FIP and a 3.33 xFIP to go along with a 10.80 K/9. Now, his ERA of 3.21 at home is higher than his 1.86 mark on the road, but almost every other stat favors pitching at home. His 2.83 FIP, 3.29 xFIP, 11.36 K/9 and 3.00 BB/9 at home are all better than those figures on the road. Let’s also keep in mind that Tropicana Field in Tampa Bay is a pitcher-friendly venue, so we certainly have Morton right where we want him tonight. The Orioles enter this one ranked just 26th with a .299 team wOBA against right-handed pitching this season and their 22.9% strikeout rate against them is roughly middle-of-the-pack. At the end of the day, Morton has been carving up the competition all season long and we have a pair of very high-ceiling starters going in this lineup as a result.
C – Yadier Molina (STL) – $3,300 vs. SEA
I was rolling out a stack against the Mariners tonight and had a catcher spot open and $3,400 to use. At that point, I might as well stick with Molina who does hit for much home run power anymore but won’t need to in order to reach value in this one. The Mariners are going to open with right-hander Matt Carasiti tonight, but left-hander Wade LeBlanc will follow up, so we can mostly look at these Cardinals and their work against left-handed pitching. LeBlanc has allowed a healthy .866 OPS and .359 wOBA against right-handed bats at home this season and a 6.68 FIP and 6.09 xFIP to boot, so he is certainly worth targeting in this one tonight. Molina has just four homers on the season, but also 16 doubles and interestingly four steals to boot. His .737 OPS and 98 wRC+ against lefties on the road are solid numbers and I like the fact that this will be his first start since June 30th in this one, so we should get a rested and ready Yadier Molina in this favorable matchup tonight.
1B – Bobby Bradley (CLE) – $3,300 vs. KC
We need to keep the prices down tonight and that’s what we’ll continue to do with an Indians four-man stack against right-hander Jakob Junis and the Kansas City Royals. Junis owns a 5.23 ERa and 5.09 FIP on the season with a 1.71 HR/9 to boot. His peripheral numbers do improve at home, but the bottom-line result has been a 5.36 ERA at home as well, so I’m liking a cheap Indians stack in this one. It’s also worth mentioning that Junis gave up five runs in 6.1 innings against the Indians at home earlier in the season and allowed four runs to them in six innings his last time out, meaning he owns a 6.69 ERA in 12.1 innings against the Tribe this season. Enter Bradley who has scuffled in his big league time this season, but that’s through just seven games and 26 plate appearances. In Triple-A this season, Bradley has hit for monstrous power in the form of a massive .346 ISO and 24 home runs in 67 games including a .967 OPS against right-handed pitching. It’s only a matter of time before he goes yard and that is a distinct possibility against Junis and a subpar Royals bullpen tonight.
2B – Jason Kipnis (CLE) – $3,600 vs. KC
Next man up in the Indians stack is Kipnis who is projected to hit out of the cleanup spot for this one tonight. He brings decent power and speed to the table with six homers and five steals on the season, but virtually all of his stats improve against right-handed pitching. He owns a .280 average, .167 ISO, .794 OPS and a 107 wRC+ against righties on the season, meaning his bat has been about 7% above league average against righties with park factors included. Kipnis enjoyed a productive month of June as he hit for a .182 ISO and .764 OPS for the month, by far his best month of the season. He’s recorded at least one hit in 11 of his last 12 games and also has three home runs in that time. It’s pretty clear that Kipnis’ bat has perked up, hence the possible move to the cleanup spot. He swiped his first base since May 20th in his last game against the Orioles, so look for Kipnis to use both his bat and legs in this one tonight.
3B – Jose Ramirez (CLE) – $3,800 vs. KC
Continuing our four-man Indians stack is Ramirez who simply hasn’t been able to find a consistent stroke this season which has actually been among the biggest surprises in all of baseball. The switch-hitting Ramirez has just five home runs on the season and is still hitting just .214 – a number that will be exceedingly difficult to raise as the season moves forward. It’s more than 100 points below his breakout 2017 season in which he hit .318. That said, Ramirez is doing something among the best player in baseball: stealing bases. The infielder has swiped 18 bases this season which ties him for fourth in the big leagues with Christian Yelich. the switch-hitter has hit lefties for a .278 average but has hit right-handers for just a .182 mark. Still, the power is slightly improved against right-handed pitching and he’s stolen 12 bases in 15 attempts against right-handers this season. I’d prefer him against a lefty, but in a four-man stack I will stick with Ramirez in this third base spot in search of some value at a sub-$4K price.
SS – Paul DeJong (STL) – $3,900 vs. SEA
Next man up in our Cardinals stack is DeJong who is having a big season at the dish and an even bigger season against left-handed pitching. Entering this one, DeJong has hit 13 homers and owns an overall .198 ISO, but the numbers improve against lefties. Against southpaw pitching this season, DeJong has hit .302 with a .208 ISO and .903 OPS to go along with a real nice 139 wRC+. Now, DeJong will see a right-hander in his first at-bat against the opener Carasiti, however he still owns a .196 ISO and 105 wRC+ against righties, so I’m not concerned whatsoever. Let’s also keep in mind that DeJong has done better work on the road this season as he owns a .224 ISO, .833 OPS and 114 WRC+ on the road compared to a .173 ISO, .773 OPS and 108 wRC+ at home. Finally, DeJong also brings some stolen base upside to this lineup with six steals on the campaign. There’s plenty of cross-category upside to be had with DeJong in this one tonight.
OF – Jake Bauers (CLE) – $3,300 vs. KC
Completing our four-man Indians stack is Bauers who brings some solid power/speed potential into this matchup tonight. He’s brought a fair bit of power to the table with 10 homers on the season and a pair of steals as well, but Bauers also swiped six bases last season in half a year’s worth of work and has as many as 20 in a minor league stop- back in 2017 at Triple-A. The power has been superior against left-handed pitching to this point as Bauers owns a .207 ISO against lefties compared to a .141 mark against righties, but he also owns a .149 ISO, .792 OPS, .342 wOBA and 110 wRC+ against right-handers on the road this season. Bauers has been much better on the road overall with a .198 ISO and .820 OPS and a 118 wRC+ compared to a .127 ISO, .552 OPS and a 39 wRC+ at home. His power picked up in a big way in June with a .260 ISO, so perhaps he can keep swinging a powerful stick to kick off the month of July tonight. Finally, Bauers is 2 for 5 with a homer in his brief history against Junis, so I like the value upside we have with the young slugger tonight.
OF – Tyler O’Neil (STL) – $3,700 vs. SEA
O’Neil brings some big-time raw power to the table, however his ability to make contact has been atrocious and he is essentially a boom-or-bust DFS player at this juncture. Still just 24, O’Neil has displayed excellent power potential in the big leagues with a .210 ISO across 190 big league plate appearances in his brief career to this point. O’Neil has one against flexed plenty of muscle in the minors this season with 11 homers and a .268 ISO across 38 Triple-A games this season. That said, against left-handers at Triple-A this season, O’Neil owns an eye-popping 1.384 OPS across 33 at-bats with five homers and a pair of doubles in that span. Tonight will mark just the third game O’Neil has played in at the big league level since being demoted to the minors in early May. O’Neil and his Cardinals teammates won’t just be up against Carasiti and LeBlanc tonight, but also a brutal Mariners bullpen that ranks 26th with a 4.98 ERA on the season, so there’s just a lot to like about the targetability of this Mariners staff tonight.
OF – Dexter Fowler (STL) – $3,300 vs. SEA
Completing our lineup and four-man Cardinals stack is Fowler who brings some power and speed to this lineup tonight as well. Fowler has already matched last season’s home run total with eight on the year while he’s also used his legs to swipe four bases as well. The switch-hitting Fowler has been a little more productive against left-handed pitching this season with a .167 ISO and .765 OPS and a 108 wRC+ against them. His numbers have slipped on the road, however Fowler still owns a huge 15.3% walk rate on the road and a .350 OBP as a result, so we should at least see him on base a couple times which opens up run-scoring and stolen base opportunities. I’d like to see some power, however, and Fowler is coming off his most powerful month of the season with a .191 ISO in the month of June. He’s no longer in his prime at 33 years old, but Fowler can be a productive bat and he can very easily eclipse value tonight at this price.