We have a split slate of MLB DFS action today with three early games (where we once again might have a Clayton Kershaw sighting) followed by 12 games making up the late slate. I will try to touch on some plays for both slates as we get into the MLB DFS Strategy which covers my favorite pitchers and stacks.
Braves @ Phillies(-117) 7.5
Pirates(-155) @ Reds 8
Nationals @ Mets(-152) 6.5
Cubs(-133) @ Brewers 8
Padres @ Marlins
Rockies @ Cardinals(-178) 7.5
Royals @ Blue Jays(-130) 8.5
Rays @ Red Sox(-120) 9.5
Tigers @ Orioles(-145) 8.5
Mariners @ Twins(-118) 8.5
Yankees @ White Sox
Indians(-117) @ Athletics 7.5
Angels @ Dodgers(-170) 6.5
Diamondbacks @ Astros(-190) 7.5
Giants @ Rangers(-133) 8.5
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers (FD $13,300, DK $14,500) – OK, let’s try this again for the third time as Kershaw was scratched yet again last night and supposedly pushed back to today. Kershaw makes an interesting GPP option against an Angels offense that does its best work against left handed pitching. Kershaw finished July with an ERA of 0.27 after allowing just 1 run in 33 innings pitched. Right now the Dodgers are a -190 favorite and this game has an over/under of 6.5 runs. Should Kershaw be scratched again, I would be very intrigued by using the Angels starter, Andrew Heaney.
Jacob deGrom, New York Mets (FD $11,300, DK $11,800) – deGrom takes on the Nats as a -152 home favorite in the other game of the day/night that has an over/under of 6.5 runs. deGrom is coming off of throwing 7.2 innings of shutout baseball while striking out 8 in his last start and takes on a Nats team that he went 6 innings against recently and struck out 8 while allowing just 2 runs en route to a win just a week and a half ago. deGrom has allowed 0 runs in 3 of his last 5 starts and is pitching nearly as well as anybody in baseball.
Dallas Keuchel, Houston Astros (FD $10,500, DK $11,200) – Keuchel is coming off of a rough start and takes on a pretty dangerous Diamondbacks team today. With that said, I think the atmosphere in Houston will motivate Keuchel even more today and he may feed off of that and throw a gem. Keuchel has made 11 home starts so far in 2015 and is 9-0 with a 1.13 ERA and an average against of just .185. He has 82 strikeouts in 79.2 home innings while not allowing a home run in Houston. Keuchel and the Astros are a -190 favorite and the game has an over/under of 7.5 runs.
Aaron Nola, Philadelphia Phillies (FD $5900, DK $5700) – Nola gets to take on a struggling Braves offense, while making his third career start. He is coming off picking up his first major league win against the Cubs in a game in which he gave up 4 runs in 7.2 innings while striking out 6. Nola has 12 strikeouts in 13.2 major league innings so far and is a -117 home favorite in a game with an over/under of 7.5 runs. I think Nola makes an amazing SP2 on DK and could make for a sneaky play on FD in order to get ALL the bats.
Matt Wisler, Atlanta Braves (FD $6300, DK $7200) – Wisler is Nola’s opposing pitcher today in what should be an exciting match-up of young pitching prospects. Wisler’s splits do not scream out must play in this match-up, however the Phillies just are not very good overall and Wisler has continued to put up quality start after quality start. As I stated under Nola, this game has an over/under of just 7.5 runs which is pretty low when you consider the two young pitchers taking the mound today.
Joe Ross, Washington Nationals (FD $6200, DK $7500) – Ross makes an interesting GPP option today as he takes the mound opposite Jacob deGrom in a game with an over/under of just 6.5 runs. I think in the long run Ross is going to be a stud for the Nationals or whoever they might deal him to at some point. He has absolutely dominated right handed hitters as they have hit just .187 against him and have an OPS of .394. Left handed hitters have an OPS of .771, which could cause a slight issue for Ross as Granderson, Murphy and Duda are all potent left handed hitters.
Cole Hamels, Texas Rangers (FD $10,500, DK $9800) – Hamels finds himself in the GPP section as he makes his first start for the Texas Rangers. The over/under in this game is at 8.5 and the ball has been flying in Texas, however I think Hamels, who is coming off of a no-hitter in his last start, is going to rise to the occasion as I am sure the Rangers crowd will be pretty excited to see their shiny, new object. Hamels and the Rangers are a -133 favorite which I think is a little high as the Giants are sending out Chris Heston to oppose him. With that said, Hamels intrigues me greatly as there are a handful of excellent pitchers taking the mound today and I think he will go overlooked.
New York Yankees: Jacoby Ellsbury (FD $3600, DK $4600), Chris Young (FD $3400, DK $3100), Alex Rodriguez (FD $4400, DK $5000), Mark Teixeira (FD $3700, DK $5100) – The Yankees exploded Friday night against a lefty and now they get to face the Gas Can that is John Danks. I love the match-up for the Yankees and definitely want exposure to all the bats in the top 6 or so in this lineup and would not be afraid to add JR Murphy in as a cheap stack option.
Detroit Tigers: Jose Iglesias (FD $2500, DK $3100), Ian Kinsler (FD $3400, DK $4000), Victor Martinez (FD $3100, DK $3200), J.D. Martinez (FD $3800, DK $4500) – I predicted this a couple of days ago when David Price was dealt and the Tigers are swinging it really well and I am sure the vets are pretty disappointed with the decision to sell as they sent Cespedes to the Mets yesterday and then went out and put up quite a few runs against the Orioles. I think Gose, Rajai Davis and Avila all make interesting options as well as whoever might be at first or if Avila is at first, then McCann has a nice cheap price tag.
Chicago Cubs: Dexter Fowler (FD $3200, DK $4200), Kyle Schwarber (FD $3100, DK $3500), Kris Bryant (FD $3200, DK $4500), Anthony Rizzo (FD $4100, DK $4900) – The Cubs get to take their hacks against Matt Garza, who has been absolutely brutal in 2015. So brutal that the Brewers could not even give him away at the deadline like I am sure they were hoping to do earlier in the season. I think Coghlan, Soler and even Castro make interesting options to add to the stack to go all out, but for my money I want these 4, especially on FD thanks to their prices.
Minnesota Twins: Brian Dozier (FD $3600, DK $4900), Aaron Hicks (FD $3100, DK $4100), Miguel Sano (FD $2800, DK $4600), Tori Hunter (FD $3100, DK $4100) – Back on the Twins again today after they disappointed me greatly against a struggling Taijuan Walker on Friday. Today they get to face a lefty in Mike Montgomery that has been giving up the long ball at a high rate recently and has just been struggling overall over his last handful of starts. The Twins love to mash left handed pitching and I would not be afraid to include Mauer, Rosario and even Plouffe should he be in the lineup.
I think there are plenty of options to use at the pitcher position throughout the day as there are some intriguing GPP mid to low tier pitchers that could surprise today/tonight. One name that I have to mention is Chris Heston as he is just $5K on DK and even though he is pitching in Texas, against Hamels, I think he makes a GREAT option to pair with Kershaw or deGrom as he is just too cheap. I think offenses such as Tampa Bay, Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Houston are in pretty nice spots and could be sneaky stacks or mini-stacks to add to other mini-stacks. My first look has me thinking that today will be won by those not using full stacks (which means now that I have said it, a full Phillies stack will win all the monies).