Monday was not a great start to the daily fantasy baseball week, as Jon Lester reversed course and delivered a gem in Atlanta and Lance McCullers Jr. imploded at home against the Seattle Mariners. LMJ really looked like the only viable arm on the day and while he didn’t pan out, there just weren’t many better options. That certainly isn’t the case tonight, as Clayton Kershaw leads the field on a fully loaded 15-game MLB DFS slate.
Kershaw is the easy pick for cash games, but he’s super expensive at $12.7k at FanDuel and I think we can get by with another option. Whether or not that ends up being the case remains to be seen, but let’s see how that roster shapes out:
SP: Robbie Ray – Arizona Diamondbacks ($10.4k)
I don’t ever love fading Kershaw, especially when he gets a dream matchup with the White Sox. However, he’s super pricey and I think we can get similar results with Ray. Arizona’s second best hurler is on the road in a brutal park against a dangerous Reds team, but he thrives on the road (1.34 ERA) and Cincinnati, as powerful as they can be, strike out a good deal. This is not a safe matchup, but it is one that carries plenty of upside. This is a calculated risk, as Ray was in great form in his last outing and should be fresh from the All-Star Break.
I obviously am a big fan of Kershaw, too, but I like the savings here, especially in GPP tournaments. Brad Peacock and Mike Clevinger are probably too expensive for my liking, but if we want a dive, I’m not totally opposed to giving Tyson Ross a shot at $7.3k. He has been very erratic through 5 starts, but he typically has a good K rate and doesn’t get hammered with the long ball that much. At Camden Yards against the O’s is not an ideal matchup, but I like him fine here if you want to load up on big bats.
C: Evan Gattis – Houston Astros ($2.7k)
This is just too cheap for Gattis, who is on the best offensive team in baseball and brings a ton of power to the table. He has been at his best against right-handed pitching this year and will be at home against a beatable arm in Sam Gaviglio, so there’s little reason to be fearful here. I do like other catchers, so if you’re not into the value and upside we get with Gattis, consider Salvador Perez and Hector Sanchez (3 straight games wit a HR, at Coors).
1B: Matt Adams – Atlanta Braves ($3k)
This is always a position we can pay up for, but I’m not spending on Joey Votto against my pitcher and I love the value and splits with Adams. This is a terrific power hitter with killer splits versus righties and he’ll be at home at a very nice price. Adams gets a tasty matchup with aging veteran arm John Lackey, who has coughed up 11 runs over his last two starts and has given up at least one HR in 9 of his last 10 games. I’m calling my shot here with Adams and I wouldn’t be too surprised if he double-donged.
2B: Rougned Odor – Texas Rangers ($3k)
Odor disappointed along with the rest of the Rangers last night but I’m going back to the well with him here. He gets another solid matchup in Camden Yards, as he takes on beatable righty, Dyland Bundy. Bundy has some upside to his game but he serves up way too much hard contact and has not been in great form, allowing 11 runs over his last two outings. The matchup, splits, park and Total (10.5) all favor Odor here, so I like him to sound off a bit.
3B: Jake Lamb – Arizona Diamondbacks ($3.4k)
Lamb is just way too cheap to pass up. Arizona’s masher is in the combustible Great American Ballpark tonight and he’s due for a long ball. This is certainly a great park to target him in, as he provides serious value with monster upside. His splits do the real talking, though, as Lamb has posted a staggering .410 OBP against righties on the year. He also gets a nice matchup with Sal Romano, who hasn’t exactly dazzled (4.50 ERA) in two starts.
SS: Corey Seager – Los Angeles Dodgers ($4k)
Carlos Correa exited his game last night with an injury and could be off the market tonight. I like him if he’s active, but I have zero qualms with dropping $200 to Seager, who mashes righties and gets a very nice matchup with average arm, Miguel Gonzalez. Gonzalez can actually be decent when he’s inducing soft contact, but this park can be problematic and a matchup with the Dodgers is less than ideal. Gonzalez hasn’t been in great form in 2017, either, while he’ll also be making his first start in a month. His last three trips to the mound saw him cough up 15 earned runs, too, so there isn’t a lot of optimism to lean on here.
OF: Chris Young – Boston Red Sox ($2.6k)
This play is all about splits and value, as Young kills left-handed pitching and will be facing southpaw, J.A. Happ. Happ can actually be tough, but he got shelled (3 HR) in his last start and doesn’t have a great history against Young (4 of 14, 1 HR). He’s also on the road at Fenway Park, which can be disastrous for the best of arms. Happ could easily bounce back in this spot, but chances are Young takes advantage of the splits and history and helps us out tonight.
OF: Nomar Mazara – Texas Rangers ($3.2k)
We head back to a powerful Rangers bat, as Texas visits a great park in Camden Yards and gets a beatable arm in the aforementioned Bundy. We don’t need to go over the same selling points, but Mazara offers power at a solid price and he’s in a great park with a good matchup. The splits work for him, too, as the 22-year old masher has a cool .344 OBP against right-handed pitching this year.
OF: Clint Frazier – New York Yankees ($2.5k)
We can wrap things up with a cheap Yankees bat in Frazier. We really don’t know for sure how Frazier will fare at both sides of the plate, but this is cheap exposure against Bartolo Colon, who has been awful in 2017 and could go up in flames tonight. Frazier’s sample size is small and he’s specifically been crushing lefties, but a .292 OPB versus righties with 2 dongs isn’t too shabby, either. Hopefully Colon gives those numbers a boost and our second deep dive of the night pushes us over the top.