Our pitching was simply lights out last night, but unfortunately our bats just didn’t get going. Stephen Strasburg hurled seven innings of two-run ball with 11 strikeouts while Aaron Nola tossed 7.1 frames of shutout ball to go along with seven strikeouts, with both pitchers ending up in the win column. That said, outside of Christian Yelich home run and a Devin Mesoraco RBI double, our bats weren’t nearly as good as they needed to be. Let’s get a smoother lineup going on tonight’s small four-game slate.
P – Sean Manaea (OAK) – $11,200 vs. SEA
Manaea has been absolutely lights out this season and he is a lock and load as a result tonight in Seattle. You can’t get much better than a 1.03 ERA through six starts this season while he’s went at least seven innings in five of those six outings, including his no hitter against the Red Sox. He brings a quality 23.6% strikeout clip into action while he’s also backed by one of the top offenses in baseball right now against a weak left in Wade Leblanc.
P – David Price (BOS) – $9,700 vs. TEX
The Rangers are a little battered and bruised right now so I’m not going to think twice about rolling out hard throwing lefty David Price in Texas. He brings a solid 3.78 ERA into action tonight, albeit with a lower 20.3% strikeout rate that we would expect to climb as the season progresses. Like Manaea, Price is backed by one of the league’s very best offenses, and while he’s been roughed up over the last couple starts, I expect him to bounce back against a team with a lofty 28.2% strikeout rate against left-handed pitching this season.
C – Martin Maldonado (LAA) – $2,300 vs. BAL
With some pricey arms in this lineup we are going to need some value and I’m looking for Maldonado to deliver some of that at a tiny price. Of course, his .222 average and five extra-base hits on the season doesn’t look great, but over the last two games he’s 6 for 8 with two doubles and a homer. He’s also up against right-hander Chris Tillman who brings a 7.03 ERA into action tonight.
1B – Chris Davis (BAL) – $2,900 vs. LAA
Davis has struggled big-time especially with strikeouts this season, but it only takes one swing for this guy to get back on track. Davis is perking up a little bit lately with two multi-hit games over his last four while he does have a pair of homers in the early going. He has a long history of deliver well-above-average power, and last year hit righties for a powerful .250 ISO. He and his Orioles teammates take on Angels’ righty Jaime Barria who brings an ugly 6.01 FIP into action tonight.
2B – Jace Peterson (BAL) – $2,800 vs. LAA
Peterson is the third value option here in a row, however I like his upside out of what is projected to be the two-hole tonight. He had a pinch-hit triple in last night’s contest, so let’s hope that kick starts something better for him moving forward. He’s hitting a solid .280 with a nice .797 OPS against right-handed pitching this season so I don’t mind his value upside at all against a right-hander who has been lucky to boast a sub-4 ERA so far this season.
3B – Pedro Alvarez (BAL) – $3,400 vs. LAA
Our low-owned, three-man Orioles stack is already complete here with Alvarez. Like Davis, Alvarez is likely never going to hit for a high average, however he boasts some excellent power in the form of six home runs and a pair of doubles so far this season. Entering tonight’s contest, Alvarez owns a massive .283 ISO and .860 OPS against right-handed pitching, something I can very much see improving against a weak right-hander tonight.
SS – Marcus Semien (OAK) – $4,200 vs. SEA
We’re done with the value plays, so now it’s time to raise our expectations moving forward. Semien takes on lefty Wade Leblanc of the Mariners tonight, a pitcher who will be making his first start of the season and brings a 4.61 ERA into action as a reliever this season. Semien is off to a real nice start to the season with a .276 average, three homers and 13 RBIs while he’s hit .326 with a .911 OPS so far against left-handed pitching.
OF – Chad Pinder (OAK) – $3,600 vs. SEA
Pinder should line up right behind Semien in the lineup tonight as he has mashed left-handed pitching in the early going. In 27 at bats against lefties, Pinder owns a .370 average to go along with a massive .296 ISO and 1.080 OPS. Two of his three homers are against lefties and he’s also homered twice of his last five games. I love the upside at this price tonight.
OF – Khris Davis (OAK) – $4,900 vs. SEA
The power continues here with Davis who completes a very high-upside three-man stack tonight. Davis has mashed seven homers already this season, two of which have come off of left-handed pitching. He also have seven doubles on the year, again, two of which have come against left-handed pitching. He’s hitless over his last five games, but this is an excellent matchup for the slugger tonight.
OF – Shohei Ohtani (LAA) – $4,800 vs. BAL
Ohtani and Maldonado form a mini-stack near the bottom of the Angels’ lineup tonight against right-hander Christ Tillman. The left-handed hitting Ohtani has absolutely clobbered right-handers this season to the tune of a .359 average to go along with a monumental .410 ISO and 1.159 OPS. Those are some impressive figures and he should be in some nice RBI spots tonight against the struggling right-hander Tillman.
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