It was another disastrous set of FanDuel MLB DFS Picks last night, and shockingly so.
Our starting pitcher, Patrick Corbin, did a solid job in hurling seven innings of two-run ball to go along with nine strikeouts against the Orioles – a result I would have easily taken – had he earned the win.
However, that was not the case as Aaron Brooks and the league-worst Orioles bullpen combined to allow just four hits, yes four hits, in a 2-0 win over the heavily favored Nationals. Trea Turner singled and tripled while Anthony Rendon walked twice for our only production from this lineup. It’s safe to say cash lineups were blown up by this result last night.
Our four-man A’s stack did not fare any better. After scoring 19 runs on Monday, the A’s managed just a pair of runs on Tuesday. Khris Davis singled and walked, Chad Pinder walked with the bases loaded for an RBI, Jurickson Profar walked twice and Mark Canha walked once in what was a wildly disappointing results from this group as well.
The icing on the cake was a goose egg from a low-owned Travis Demeritte.
That marks back-to-back nights to forget with our FanDuel MLB DFS Picks, and we are in need of a big night here on tonight’s 11-game main slate!
P – Mike Foltynewicz (ATL) – $7,700 vs. TOR
In a GPP-type move, I will be using Braves right-hander Mike Foltynewicz has he takes a turn tonight against the Blue Jays from the Rogers Centre in Toronto. It was a rough start to the season for last year’s Braves ace and the numbers remain ugly with a 5.68 ERA, 5.65 FIP and a 5.00 xFIP to go along with a 2.19 HR/9 against. That said, tonight will mark the fifth start of the second half for Foltynewicz as he was demoted to the minors in early June and brought up again at the beginning of August, and he hurled a gem his last time out. Foltynewicz tossed seven innings of one-run ball to go along with seven punchouts in a tough-luck no decision against the Mets at Citi Field in New York in his last outing. He pitched just 4.2 innings against the Dodgers in his previous start, but allowed just two runs and struck out five to boot. The Blue Jays bats have improved in the second half of the season to be sure, but their 24% K-rate in that time still ranks in the bottom 10 of the league and Foltynewicz owns a 10.17 K/9 clip in his four starts since returning to the big leagues. There is risk to be sure, but I like the value upside, especially with the Braves listed as roughly -145 favorites to win this one on the moneyline tonight.
C/1B – C.J. Cron (MIN) – $3,200 vs. CWS
The Twins have the second-highest run projection on the night behind the Washington Nationals at 6.1 runs as they take on left-hander Ross Detwiler and the Chicago White Sox. In seven starts and 12 appearances in the big leagues this season, Detwiler owns a 5.51 ERA, 6.74 FIP and a massive 2.85 HR/9 allowed, so we certainly have a targetable pitcher on our hands with the most powerful team in baseball this season. As a result, I’ll be rostering a quarter of lefty-mashers against him, beginning here with Cron. Entering this one tonight, Cron owns a .321 average to go along with a big-time .321 ISO, 1.023 OPS, .410 wOBA and a 157 wRC+ versus left-handed pitching. The numbers trend up on the road versus lefties where Cron has put together a .356 ISO, 1.051 OPS, .418 wOBA and 163 wRC+. Not only has Cron mashed lefties as a whole, he’s also enjoyed some serious success against Detwiler in their history versus one another as he’s gone 6 for 11 (.545) with a pair of doubles against the veteran southpaw, good for a .182 ISO and 1.273 OPS against him. Add it all up and he’s a great way to kick off a high-ceiling four-man stack this evening.
2B – Jason Kipnis (CLE) – $3,400 vs. DET
I’ll be rostering a pair of stack in this lineup tonight and both come from the AL Central as I’ll be using Jason Kipnis to begin an Indians stack against right-hander Jordan Zimmermann and the Detroit Tigers. Zimmermann has simply struggled in his four-year Tigers tenure to this point after a real nice run with the Nationals that earned him a lucrative deal with the Tigers. This season, the veteran right-hander owns a 6.48 ERA, although his 4.57 FIP and 5.00 xFIP do point towards some poor luck on his part. Still, he’s had no luck against this Indians team in his career as he owns an enormous 10.68 ERA against them across eight starts. Enter Kipnis who brings some pop and stolen base upside into this one as he has swatted 14 long balls on the season to go along with seven steals. He’s been a solid bat against right-handers as he owns a .198 ISO, .778 OPS, .324 wOBA and a 97 wRC+ against them. He’s currently enjoying a big month of August so far with a .250 ISO and .809 OPS in the month to this point, including a homer and a pair of runs scored in last night’s 10-1 win. Perhaps best of all is the fact that Kipnis has tortured Zimmermann in his time against him by going 8 for 13 (.615) with three doubles and two triples against him. I think I’ll take that nugget and run with Kipnis.
3B – Miguel Sano (MIN) – $3,900 vs. CWS
Next man up in our four-man Twins stack is Sano who is another member of this dreaded lineup that is feasting on left-handed pitching this season, especially on the road. The raw power has always been there for Sano but he’s endured off-field issues that have prevented him from reaching his potential. However, in 2019, he’s put it all together as he’ll enter this one tonight smashing lefties for a massive .341 ISO, .966 OPS, .394 wOBA and a 146 wRC+. On the road against lefties, Sano owns an eye-popping .514 ISO, 1.280 OPS, .507 wOBA and a 223 wRC+. Now, the road sample size is just 37 at-bats, but the guy has clubbed six home runs in those 37 road at-bats versus left-handed pitching. Sano has tallied five hits over his last four games, three of which came in the form of a home run with a double mixed in. As a result, the slugger owns a .322 ISO, .906 OPS, .373 wOBA and 132 wRC+ for the month of August to this point. Like Cron, Sano has also enjoyed success against Detwiler in the past, albeit in a small sample, as he’s gone 3 for 4 with a home run against him. I’ll look for that success to continue tonight for the slugging third baseman.
SS – Willi Castro (DET) – $2,400 vs. CLE
I was going to use Francisco Lindor in this spot tonight, however since Lindor has gone just 2 for 13 (.154) against Zimmermann in his career, I think we can fade the Indians’ leadoff man and I did just that and subsequently used his high salary to bulk up the rest of my lineup. As a result, I was left with the shortstop position open and $2,600 to fill it. Of that bunch, I’m going to roll with Tigers shortstop Willi Castro who should certainly come at low ownership in this one tonight. He’ll take on Indians right-hander Aaron Civale whose has a good season in five starts with the big club, however this has more to do with Castro. He brings some nice power and speed to the lineup as he hit 11 homers and stolen 17 bases in the minors this season, and the switch-hitting middle infielder fared better against righties in the minors (.857 OPS) than he did lefties (.755). 10 of his 11 minor league home runs came against a righty and all 17 of his steals did as well. Tonight marks just the fourth big league game of the season for the former Indians farmhand and he’s gone 3 for 11 (.273) with a double and two runs scored so far. He’s got pop and he’s got speed, so let’s see if we can bring both to the table and give this lineup a shot in the arm at low ownership tonight.
OF – Yasiel Puig (CLE) – $3,400 vs. DET
Speaking of pop and speed, Puig will be our second bat as part of our three-man Indians stack against Zimmermann tonight. The former Dodger and Red has hit both lefties and righties fairly well this season, but once against the righty-swinging Puig is sporting some reverse splits and hitting righties better than he is lefties. Entering this one tonight, Puig sports a .226 ISO, .798 OPS, .332 wOBA and a 102 wRC+ against right-handed pitching on the season. He’s not hitting for a ton of average or walking a lot, which is dragging down his wOBA and wRC+, however the power is legit with 24 home runs on the season – 19 of which have come against a righty – while he’s also swiped 16 bases – 14 of which have come against right-handed pitchers. I like the fact that Puig registered his first multi-hit game since August 17th in last night’s blowout win when he went 2 for 5 with a pair of doubles, a run scored and an RBI. He was also caught stealing. I’m simply here for the home run and stolen base upside with Puig as he takes on a pitching staff that allows plenty of the former.
OF – Franmil Reyes (CLE) – $3,200 vs. DET
Completing our four-man Indians stack is Reyes who loves himself some right-handed pitching despite hitting from the right side himself. He’s also white-hot at the plate entering this one tonight. On the season, Reyes has hit lefties for a .242 ISO, .812 OPS, .332 wOBA and 105 wRC+ – all very solid numbers, especially the power. However, he’s also smacked right-handers for a big-time .291 ISO, .828 OPS, .338 wOBA and 108 wRC+. Interestingly, Reyes only has 13 doubles on the season, but he also has 33 home runs to boot and 27 of those long balls have come against a right-handed pitcher. Fans with outfield seats at Comerica Park in Detroit tonight might want to put on a helmet when Reyes steps to the plate as he’s launched four home runs over his last three games with a double to boot. If you want to go back one game further, all six of his hits over the last four games have went for extra-bases. He’s also scored five runs over his last four games and driven in 10 runs over his last three. The Tigers’ pitching staff owns a 1.58 HR/9 rate – the seventh-highest mark in baseball – while their 5.20 bullpen FIP ranks 29th. There’s oodles of upside in this Indians three-man stack tonight.
OF – Nelson Cruz (MIN) – $4,200 vs. CWS
It’s not a smart idea to fade the Cruz-missile when rostering a Twins stack against a left-handed pitching, so I’m not about to go down that road tonight. At 39 years of age, Cruz is proving that age is just a number as he continues to hit home runs with the best of em’ with 33 on the season despite missing time with injuries and appearing in just 94 games to this point. In fact, Cruz’s .345 ISO here in 2019 is almost a full 100 points above his career .250 mark and he’s already been worth 3.3 WAR despite missing time and DHing this season. He’s bat as just been that good. Fans at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago tonight might also want to throw on a helmet when Cruz steps to the dish as he has unleashed a unworldly .489 ISO, 1.157 OPS, .451 wOBA and 185 wRC+ on left-handed pitchers this season. On the road, all he’s done is post a .500 ISO, 1.172 OPS, .464 wOBA and 194 wRC+ against southpaw pitching. The guy has been on another planet in the second half of the season as well when he owns a .479 ISO, 1.230 OPS, .490 wOBA and 211 wRC+. Finally, Cruz has absolute throttled Detwiler in their history against each other as he’s gone 5 for 7 (.714) with three home runs, a double and a triple against him. That’s good for a massive 1.714 ISO and 3.143 OPS – laughable numbers. He’s the top bat on the slate in my opinion.
UTIL – Mitch Garver (MIN) – $3,400 vs. CWS
It’s hard to imagine Mitch Garver as the forgotten man on this lethal Twins offense given the year he has put up out of seemingly nowhere. Garver played in 103 games last season with the Twins and hit seven home runs and produced a .146 ISO. This season, Garver has launched 23 home runs in just 74 games on the season, good for an eye-popping .322 ISO. The production has come against lefties and righties, however the numbers against lefties are superior and simply outstanding. Garver has hit left-handers to the tune of a .379 ISO, 1.103 OPS, .444 wOBA and 180 wRC+ on the season. The numbers are better at home, but I’m not about to argue with his .278 ISO, 1.064 OPS, .442 wOBA and 179 wRC+ against left-handers on the road, either. He’s been struggling a little bit in the month of August from an average and OPS standpoint, but he’s still hitting for power with a powerful .232 ISO for the month while two of his last three knocks have gone for a double. Perhaps the best of all with Garver is the fact that his high-OBP ways have him projected to hit in the ever-valuable leadoff spot tonight, so we are getting wonderful cross-category upside from the Twins backstop tonight.