Welcome to a fresh week of MLB DFS!
We will look to get our week started on the right note on this solid 10-game Monday night slate, so let’s get right to it!
MIA @ NYM
P – J.A. Happ (NYY) – $9,300 vs. MIN
Happ has been excellent since coming over to the Yankees from the Blue Jays at the trade deadline and I expect that to continue tonight in Minnesota. As a member of the pinstripes, Happ has compiled a 3.10 ERA across seven starts and already has five wins to his credit in that span. He hasn’t struck out hitters at the same clip he did with the Blue Jays, but Happ still owns a 26.6% strikeout rate on the season and has two nine-strikeout games under his belt with his new club. The Twins are projected to score just 3.8 runs tonight and the Yankees are -155 favorites at the moment, so I will roll with the veteran lefty at what I believe to be a fair price tonight.
P – Jake Junis (KC) – $8,500 vs. CWS
Junis has also been very good lately and he gets an increase in strikeout upside thanks to a matchup with the strikeout-happy White Sox. In fact, Chicago has the highest strikeout rate in baseball at 25.9%, the second-highest strikeout rate against right-handed pitching at 25.5% and by far the highest strikeout rate since the All-Star break at 26.8%. Junis has a solid strikeout rate of 22% for the season, but also a 24.3% mark since the All-Star break which interestingly coincided with a DL stint. Junis has also posted a tidy 2.75 ERA in the season’s second half, so I will take his excellent recency and increased strikeout upside tonight against the White Sox.
C – Jose Briceno (LAA) – $2,900 vs. TEX
We are going to be rostering a couple of expensive bats as part of our stacks today, so we are going to need some value somewhere in the lineup and I believe we can get some out of Briceno as a one-off play against left-hander Mike Minor. Minor has been touched up to the tune of a 5.79 ERA on the road this season and Briceno has flexed his muscle against lefties at two levels this season, making this a very attractive matchup for the rookie catcher. Briceno torched lefties for a huge 1.091 at Triple-A this season and has produced a .231 ISO and .911 OPS against lefties in the big leagues in part-time duty. All three of his homers have come against lefties, so let’s look to extract some value from the 25-year-old tonight.
1B – Matt Carpenter (STL) – $4,800 vs. PIT
Pirates right-hander Trevor Williams has been good this season, but the Cardinals have hit him well, especially Carpenter who has mashed right-handed pitching this season. Carpenter has crafted a .291 ISO and .957 OPS on the season against right-handed pitching and has produced a massive .326 ISO and 1.010 OPS since the All-Star break. In his career against Williams, Carpenter has gone 7 for 16 (.438) with three home runs and a double. The fact that he is a leadoff hitter only accelerates his upside, so we will roster him as part of a mini-stack tonight.
2B – Jason Kipnis (CLE) – $4,000 vs. TB
Kipnis hasn’t had a great overall season, but he’s been better lately and still owns some power and speed upside as he takes on Rays’ right-hander Diego Castillo tonight. Of course, Castillo is just the opener in this one, so it’s unclear who Kipnis will see after, but he does own a solid .156 ISO on the season against right-handed pitching, but he’s picked up the power to an overall .173 ISO and .737 OPS in the season’s second half. Kipnis has displayed his cross-category upside with a homer, a double, three runs scored, five RBI and a stolen base over the last four games, so we will take that upside and run tonight in Tampa Bay.
3B – Kris Bryant (CHC) – $4,300 vs. MIL
Brewers left-hander Wade Miley has been surprisingly good this season, but he’s also due for regression according to his ERA indicators, so we are going to roster a trio of lefty-mashers against him tonight beginning here with Bryant. He’s spent a good chunk of time on the DL, but Bryant has absolutely destroyed left-handed pitching this season to the tune of a .358 average, .388 ISO and 1.160 OPS. Furthermore, he has obliterated lefties at home to the tune of an unworldly .583 ISO and 1.408 OPS. Those are simply massive numbers at ones I want to take advantage of at a very attractive price.
SS – Javier Baez (CHC) – $5,000 vs. MIL
Another player that has mashed left-handed pitching this season is Baez who looks to continue his MVP-type season tonight against the southpaw Miley. Baez actually has fairly even splits on the season, but power numbers have favored lefties as he owns a big-time .274 ISO and .933 OPS against southpaws this year. He’s also stolen 21 bases, a decent six of which have come against lefties. The versatile infielder has scuffled somewhat at the plate as of late, however there aren’t many players with cross-category upside matching his tonight, so I will certainly include him as part of this three-man stack.
OF – Albert Almora (CHC) – $3,600 vs. MIL
I like the value upside Almora brings to the table tonight as he is projected to hit leadoff against Miley as he often does against left-handed pitching. He doesn’t hit for a ton of home run power, but Almora has produced an attractive .822 OPS on the season against left-handed pitching and is riding a modest three-game hitting streak entering this contest. He also has some real good numbers in his career against Miley as he has gone 3 for 5 with a homer and a stolen base off of the veteran southpaw. I am looking for him to continue his strong season against lefties in this matchup tonight.
OF – Marcell Ozuna (STL) – $4,300 vs. PIT
Ozuna has caught absolute fire lately so he makes for a nice play alongside Carpenter in this matchup against right-hander Trevor Williams. Ozuna has hit 13 homers off of right-handed pitching this season, and although his splits are traditional this season, he rocked 34 homers off of righties last season, so at least we know the power is there against righties. The power has been there in spades recently as Ozuna has cracked five home runs over his last five games and eight home runs over his last 14 contests. So far in September, he owns a .500 ISO and 1.188 OPS, so let’s go with one of the hottest hitters in all of baseball this evening.
OF – Greg Allen (CLE) – $3,300 vs. TB
Allen doesn’t bring much power upside to the table, but he brings plenty of stolen base upside with him so I will look to extract some value out of him tonight as part of a mini-stack with Kipnis. Allen has already stolen 15 bases this year in 238 big league at-bats, and has 27 steals overall on the campaign between the bigs and Triple-A. He actually has laced two doubles over his last three games to go along with a steal, three runs scored and a pair of RBI. He could be a sneaky-good low-owned play on this 10-game slate tonight.