Last night’s DraftKings MLB DFS Picks had a couple of solid pitching efforts to build off of, but our bats simply didn’t produce enough to get the job done.
J.A. Happ led the way for our lineup with another beautiful effort since coming over to the Yankees from the Blue Jays at the trade deadline. Happ hurled six shutout innings, albeit he struck out just three. Still, he landed in the win column for the 16th time this season and the sixth time in eight starts with the Yanks.
Our second starter Jake Junis allowed three earned runs and didn’t land in the win column, but the right-hander went eight innings and struck out five. He was stung by a couple of home runs, but we will take that effort given his attractive price from last night.
Our stacks just didn’t work out, however. We received a double, an RBI and a run from Kris Bryant as part of our three-man Cubs stack, but that was about it.
Our two Cardinals didn’t do too shabby as they combined to go 3 for 7 with a double, a walk, four runs scored and an RBI between Matt Carpenter and Marcell Ozuna.
Our Indians mini-stack was almost non-existent as Greg Allen unfortunately logged just one at-bat while Jason Kipnis walked twice and scored a run.
Lastly, our one-off catcher Jose Briceno went 0 for 4 as he failed to capitalize on a nice matchup against the left-hander Mike Minor.
We will look for a much more consistent lineup on tonight’s 13-game main slate!
WAS @ PHI / TOR @ BOS
P – Jacob deGrom (NYM) – $13,500 vs. MIA
If his win/loss record indicated how well he pitched this season, deGrom would be a complete lock for the NL Cy Young award, but that’s sometimes not how it works. Still, he’s the top arm on this slate and gets a super-favorable matchup against the light-hitting Marlins tonight at Citi Field in Queens, New York. deGrom carries an MLB-leading 1.68 ERA into tonight’s action across 28 starts while his 31.3% strikeout clip is nothing to balk at either. deGrom He has allowed two runs or less in 23 of his 28 starts this season and has nine double-digit strikeout games under his belt as well. Let’s roll with the elite right-hander tonight and hope his team can provide some run support against right-hander Jose Urena.
P – Brad Keller (KC) – $5,700 vs. CWS
deGrom is certainly an expensive arm and to get any sort of profitable stack in this lineup we need value out of our second pitcher, so I am liking Keller’s upside against a strikeout-happy White Sox club. Keller has been excellent in his rookie season so far, producing a 3.14 ERA on the campaign while keeping the ball in the park at a 0.52 HR/9 clip. Keller only has a small 16.2% strikeout rate on the season, but as we discussed yesterday, this White Sox team has the highest strikeout rate in the second half of the season and the second-highest rate against right-handed pitching. If he can go six innings of two-run ball with five strikeouts, or something close to that, I will take that all day long at this price and with deGrom’s upside ahead of him.
C – Gary Sanchez (NYY) – $4,100 vs. MIN
It’s been a tough year for Sanchez with injuries and underperformance, but Sanchez homered in last night’s win and we have seen before what kind of roll this guy is capable of getting on, so I think he brings plenty of upside at an attractive price as part of a Yankees four-man stack tonight. They take on right-hander Tyler Duffey who has spent most of the year in the bullpen at Triple-A and owns a 9.00 ERA in 19 MLB innings for the season. Sanchez owns a real powerful .222 ISO against right-handed pitching this season and has now homered twice over his last four games with a double mixed in. He’s also 2 for 2 with a homer off of Duffey. Perhaps he is feeling the power stroke once again, and that could mean big things moving forward.
1B – Greg Bird (NYY) – $3,600 vs. MIN
Bird has also scuffled this season, but like Sanchez, he is a low-average, high-power bat so I don’t mind him at all in this stack at a nice price as well. Bird has produced a rock-solid .184 ISO on the season against right-handed pitching after hitting righties for a powerful .202 ISO in the 2017 season and a huge .304 ISO and .915 OPS in the 2015 season prior to sitting out all of the 2016 campaign with an ankle injury. There’s obviously plenty of pop here and I want to take advantage of that at the tail end of this Yankees stack tonight.
2B – Logan Forsythe (MIN) – $2,800 vs. NYY
Although he’s been somewhat better lately, Sonny Gray has been blown up on a consistent basis this season so I think we can lock in a trio of Twins and feel quite good about it tonight, beginning here with Forsythe who is projected to hit in the cleanup spot tonight. Forsythe has hit .290 since coming over to the Twins from the Dodgers at the deadline, and although it’s been with minimal power, the cleanup spot could provide him with RBI chances that might only require a single to capitalize on. We’re going to need value upside in this lineup with the price of deGrom and considering Forsythe is 4 for 8 with a homer and a double in his career against Gray, I think we can extract some value from the veteran infielder tonight.
3B – Miguel Andujar (NYY) – $4,500 vs. MIN
Andujar is right at the top of the list in terms of the AL Rookie of the Year race, and he has hit right-handed pitching a little bit better than lefties this season, so I will take his slight reverse-splits and run tonight. He owns a .223 ISO against both lefties and righties on the year, but his .866 OPS against righties outweighs his .816 mark against lefties. He also owns a .307 batting average against righties compared to a .273 mark against lefties. He has doubled in back-to-back games and has five hits over his last three as well. He too is listed at a reasonable price given the consistent production, so he’s certainly locked into my stack tonight.
SS – Jorge Polanco (MIN) – $3,800 vs. NYY
Polanco doesn’t hit for a ton of home run power, but he does have some extra-base pop mixed in with some stolen base upside, especially against right-handed pitching. Polanco owns an impressive .310 average and .828 OPS on the season against right-handed pitching while he’s swiped four bases overall. Let’s keep in mind he is just over 200 at-bats on the season due to his first-half suspension, so the stolen base upside is a little bigger than those four steals might suggest. Regardless, he has three multi-hit efforts over his last five games and is projected to hit second in the lineup tonight, so I am liking him as part of a three-man stack at a sub-$4K price.
OF – Jake Cave (MIN) – $3,700 vs. NYY
Last man up in the Minnesota three-man stack is Cave who has hit for some solid power this season against right-handed pitching. He has produced a real powerful .216 ISO and .815 OPS on the season against right-handed pitching with an impressive .491 SLG to boot. He already owns a .250 ISO for the month of September so far after powering his way to a .230 mark in the month of August. He is projected to hit fifth in the lineup tonight, one spot behind Forsythe, so the idea here is to get Cave to the plate with Polanco and Forsythe aboard and deliver some power and RBIs for this lineup at low ownership.
OF – Aaron Hicks (NYY) – $4,700 vs. MIN
Hicks will technically be the leadoff man for our lineup tonight as he is projected to hit in the very valueable two-hole tonight against a struggling pitcher in Tyler Duffey. The switch-hitting Hicks has hit for more home run power against lefties this year, but still owns a nice .192 ISO against righties while his .842 OPS against righties outweighs his .805 mark against lefties. Hicks also brings some solid stolen base potential into this lineup tonight with 10 steals on the season, eight of which have come against righties. He has excellent cross-category upside in this matchup tonight.
OF – Hernan Perez (MIL) – $3,500 vs. CHC
There was a need for an outfielder at $3,600 or less to complete this lineup, and there’s a few nice options in Melky Cabrera, Corey Dickerson and Jake Bauers to name a few, so any of these guys look good. Personally, I am going to try and unlock some of the power/speed upside from Perez against left-handed Jose Quintana. Perez has hit lefties for impressive power in the form of a .216 ISO and .786 OPS on the season while he’s swiped 11 bags on the year in part-time duty, five of which have come against lefties. Quintana tends to give up more steals than the average lefty does, and Perez is a career .294 hitter against him, so I like Perez’s upside at what should be very low ownership tonight.