Yet another night of excellent pitching and subpar hitting. Seems like it has been a trend recently that these lineups have produced some excellent pitching picks while the stacks haven’t seemed to pan out. With some expensive arms on tonight’s slate there will be some cheaper bats, but a low-cost, high-upside stack awaits! A light seven-game slate also awaits us tonight so let’s bare down a pick some winners!
P – Chris Sale (BOS) – $13,300 vs. TB
Not a difficult decision here to roll with the slate’s top arm. Sale will take on a Rays’ team that easily leads all of baseball with 260 strikeouts against left-handed pitching while Sale sports a massive 35.5% strikeout clip on the season. Also working in the lefty’s favor is the pitching-friendly confines of Tropicana Field where he owns a career 1.44 ERA across four starts and five appearances.
P – Rich Hill (LAD) – $10,200 vs. ARI
The Diamondbacks’ issues with left-handed pitching as well as their offensive issues on the road have been severely exposed in this series at Dodger Stadium. Lefties Clayton Kershaw and Alex Wood dominated the D-Backs on back-to-back nights so let’s roll with another high-strikeout lefty in
Rich Hill. Hill sports a 26.3% strikeout clip on the season and has allowed just four earned runs and struck out 26 over his last three starts. Arizona has the third worst team OPS against left-handed pitching, the fourth worst team OPS on the road and have a 28.2% strikeout rate against lefties this season.
C – Bruce Maxwell (OAK) – $2,500 vs. SEA
The A’s are in Seattle tonight to take on right-hander Sam Gaviglio, a pitcher who has served up plenty of home runs balls this season. Gavligio has surrendered 1.99 HR/9 to lefties and 1.86 HR/9 to righties, so let’s roll with a cheap A’s stack tonight beginning here with Maxwell. Maxwell has a very nice .302 batting average against righties this season to go along with a .375 OBP and .325 wOBA. He hasn’t hit righties for a ton of power but he is a very cost-effective catcher for a guy hitting over .300 in his matchup.
1B – Yonder Alonso (OAK) – $4,000 vs. SEA
Hitting in the cleanup spot for the A’s tonight will be the surprising breakout star in Yonder Alonso. After hitting two homers two nights ago, Alonso is up to 19 on the season to go along with his .289 ISO, .986 OPS and 35.5% hard hit rate against righties. His .409 wOBA leads all Athletics against righties as he will essentially begin this stack tonight as he should be the first player to bat among the A’s in this lineup.
2B – Brian Dozier (MIN) – $3,900 vs. BAL
Dozier is slated to hit in the valuable leadoff spot tonight against another pitcher that has had some home runs issues this season. While his FIP and xFIP are worse to lefties, Orioles’ right-hander Dylan Bundy has surrendered more HR/9 to righties at 1.63 on the season. Dozier sports a decent .177 ISO against righties this season but his value comes from hitting leadoff for a team implied to score more than five runs tonight.
3B – Ryon Healy (OAK) – $3,500 vs. SEA
Keep an eye on this one as Healy has missed some time due to back spasms but there is a chance he gets back into the lineup tonight, and if he does he fits this A’s stack perfectly. Healy has a very nice .217 ISO and an elevated 39.4% hard hit rate against right-handed pitching this season, just the kind of numbers we want to see against a home run-prone pitcher tonight.
SS – Tzu-Wei Lin (BOS) – $2,700 vs. TB
We get some more value in this lineup tonight by adding young shortstop/third baseman Lin. Lin has surprised to the tune of a .845 OPS and team-leading .371 wOBA against right-handed pitching this season, albeit in a 24 plate appearance sample size. Nonetheless, he has two three-hit games over his last three starts and also brings some stolen base upside to the table with him tonight as well.
OF – Bradley Zimmer (CLE) – $3,400 vs. SD
Indians’ rookie Bradley Zimmer is in a very nice spot tonight despite hitting lower in the batting order. He will take on the high-strikeout arm of Padres’ righty Dinelson Lamet, however Lamet has also yielded 3.06 HR/9 and a 6.32 FIP against left-handed hitters this season. Enter Zimmer who has hit righties to the tune of a .188 ISO, .832 OPS and a very nice .357 wOBA in his rookie season. He is a nice, cheap standalone play tonight.
OF – Matt Kemp (ATL) – $3,400 vs. WAS
While the Braves could be in tough tonight against Nationals’ lefty Gio Gonzalez, essentially all of the damage done against him is from right-handed hitters so let’s roll with the powerful Kemp tonight. Gonzalez has a 1.43 HR/9 (compared to 0.00 to lefties) and a 4.71 FIP to righties while Kemp has hit lefties to a nice .189 ISO and .846 OPS to go along with 37.5% hard contact as well.
OF – Adam Jones (BAL) – $2,900 vs. MIN
It’s very surprising to me to see Jones under the $3,000 mark tonight. Considering his .186 ISO and .767 OPS against righties are some of the best marks on the Orioles and the fact he has been a reverse-splits hitter (hits righties better than lefties) in his career, this is a nice play at a nice price. Berrios has been good against righties this season but this is the type of play we need to identify if we are paying up for elite arms tonight.