Last night’s lineup had some very bright spots but some not very bright ones as well. Justin Verlander did not come through for our lineup and it’s a shame he didn’t as Robbie Ray had a dominant outing. J.D. Martinez and Gregor Blanco had massive nights and hopefully you were able to get in the cash using these picks. We have a very large slate on our hands tonight so let’s see who will be targeting on such a big slate.
P – Max Scherzer (WAS) – $12,700 vs. SD
This is one is a no brainer as I am very happy to send Scherzer out to the mound against one of baseball’s worst offenses and one of the most strikeout-prone offenses as well. The Padres rank 28th in runs scored on the season while their 428 strikeouts are the fourth most in all of baseball. This could be a big problem for the Padres tonight against Scherzer and his 11.46 K/9 on the season. While he will likely be a high-owned arm I like Scherzer in both cash and GPP tonight as I have identified plenty of value plays to use him with tonight.
P – Aaron Nola (PHI) – $7,700 vs. CIN
Our second pitcher needed to come with some cost-effectiveness and we get that and a very good pitcher in the form of Aaron Nola. Nola was the recipient of some bad luck last season but pitched very well as evidenced by his 3.08 FIP and he carries a similar 3.03 FIP into play tonight. His strikeouts are down on the season to 7.83 K/9 after posting an 8.71 K/9 in 2016, however Scherzer has plenty of strikeouts on his radar tonight and Nola can chip in while keeping the Reds’ bats quiet as well.
C – Mike Zunino (SEA) – $3,100 vs. BOS
After a stint in the minors Zunino is back with the big club and, in fact, connected for a homer in his first game back after roughly three weeks in Triple-A. He is never going to be a consistent hitter, but he has a nice matchup tonight at Fenway against Eduardo Rodriguez. Being a right-handed hitter helps against the lefty Rodriguez, as Zunino hit to a .250 ISO and an .835 OPS against lefties in 2016. He has plenty of pop in his bat and that could come in handy in a ball park that yields plenty of home runs to his pull field in left.
1B – Kendrys Morales (TOR) – $3,900 vs. TEX
Tonight the Blue Jays will take on Rangers’ right-hander A.J. Griffin who has been giving up more home runs than perhaps any other pitcher in all of baseball. His 2.63 HR/9 should likely take another hit in the wrong direction tonight as he faces a healthy Blue Jays’ lineup tonight at the Rogers Centre in Toronto. Morales should hit in the heart of this Blue Jays’ lineup and considering he boasts a .216 ISO against righties this season he could provide some pop at a very reasonable price.
2B – Devon Travis (TOR) – $4,000 vs. TEX
We have the same deal here with Travis. Griffin hasn’t been good to both lefties and righties this season and the way Travis has been swinging the bat he is certainly a worthwhile play tonight. Travis is tied for first in all of baseball with 16 doubles on the season while posting an enormous .775 SLG% and a 1.227 OPS over his last ten games. If stacking Toronto, Travis is a must at the second base position today.
3B – Jose Reyes (NYM) – $4,100 vs. PIT
Another pitcher worth targeting tonight is Pirates’ right-hander Chad Kuhl who is tough on righties, but not very good to lefties at all. Kuhl has yielded a .916 OPS to left-handed hitters so far in his young big-league career while his FIP stands at 5.03 against lefties compared to just 2.75 against righties this season. Reyes hasn’t had a great season overall, but he does have three homers and five stolen bases on the season while hitting to a .297 batting average over his last ten games, showing signs of improvement while boasting power and speed potential tonight.
SS – Taylor Motter (SEA) – $3,200 vs. BOS
If Motter gets the start tonight in Boston he should pair with Zunino for a nice, low-owned mini-stack in this Mariners’ lineup. Motter lit the world on fire to begin this season but hasn’t seen as many reps with the return of Jean Segura, however he crushed lefties last season. Although it’s a small sample of just 23 at-bats, Motter hit .348 against lefties with two doubles, a homer and a 1.030 OPS in 2016. If he can find his stroke against lefties tonight he could be a big value boost to this lineup.
OF – Curtis Granderson (NYM) – $3,600 vs. PIT
Forming a nice mini-stack with Reyes is Granderson who will almost certainly be the lowest-owned outfielder for the Mets tonight. Granderson is starting to get it going after a slow start to the season and given how bad Kuhl has been to lefties and the fact Granderson hit righties to a .238 ISO in 2016 leads me to believe the upside is certainly there tonight. He has a .607 SLG% and a 1.006 OPS over his last ten games and should deliver some more value this evening.
OF – Bradley Zimmer (CLE) – $3,600 vs. KC
Here we have a bright young star in the making in Indians’ outfielder Bradley Zimmer. Zimmer has hit quite well since coming up from the minors with an .876 OPS, a homer and two steals in just 21 at bats on the season. He will take on Royals’ righty Ian Kennedy tonight who is very similar to A.J. Griffin in the sense he is a fly-ball pitcher who gives up plenty of home runs. Progressive Field in Cleveland is a nice hitter’s park and Zimmer could deliver plenty of value as a lower-owned outfielder tonight.
OF – Kevin Pillar (TOR) – $4,100 vs. TEX
Finishing off this lineup is Blue Jays’ outfielder Kevin Pillar who will technically lead off this Blue Jays’ stack as he will hit in the top spot for the Jays tonight. Pillar is having a huge season for the Jays with seven homers, an .845 OPS and seven steals on the season, providing excellent cross-category value. With the Jays getting both Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki back tonight they are a much better offense which should help Pillar gain some extra points out of that valuable leadoff spot tonight.