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August 22 MLB DFS: An A.J. In The Outfield
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Welcome to August 22 MLB DFS action here at DailyRoto. Below you’ll find our Daily Fantasy Baseball Premium podcast for August 22 MLB DFS along with our LIVE Premium Chat and cliff notes. Make sure you’re using our customizable projections tool, you’re actively participating in the live chat, and you’re reviewing the cliff notes to supplement your research and roster construction process. Very best of luck in tonight’s action!

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August 22 MLB DFS Position Timestamps
03:20 Starting Pitcher
14:57 Catcher
18:24 First Base
23:31 Second Base
28:08 Third Base
30:59 Shortstop
34:29 Outfield
40:06 Stacks

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CUSTOMIZABLE PROJECTIONS WITH VALUE RATINGS CLICK HERE

  • In cash games, we recommend focusing on value plays to build your rosters (far right hand column of Projections page linked above). Value plays are those we feel have the highest probability of out-earning their current price tag. By packing value plays into your roster, you’re creating a team with a higher floor.
  • In tournaments, we recommend building a core of the best value plays and then complementing them with players who have a high ceiling. This combination is essentially turning up the variance on a strong foundation and we believe often is the best recipe for tournament success.

August 22 MLB DFS CLIFF NOTES

 Starting Pitcher

For full SP rankings, see our projections: https://dailyroto.com/mlb-customizable-projections

Tuesday’s slate has some interesting decisions at the starting pitcher position but the position comes with zero ambiguity at the top. Chris Archer (TB) leads all projected starters by a wide margin (nearly seven points on FanDuel and over four points on DraftKings). Archer is at home against a Blue Jays’ offense that he has largely had substantial success against. The Jays rank 23rd in wRC+ against RHP with a league average K Rate. Archer comes with the most built in strikeouts of any starter on the slate and he comes with the lowest implied total against. Pricing remains stricter on top tier starters on DraftKings ($12,400) than on FanDuel ($10,200) but he’s relatively easy to fit on either site. The only strong argument against Archer on this slate is the substantial amount of offense available.

The primary pairing, or in some cases pivot, from Archer is Lance Lynn (STL). Lynn is wildly splits-dependent (.261 wOBA, .100 ISO, 26.2 K Rate against RHBs since 2015 compared to .349 wOBA, .192 ISO, and 15.7 K Rate against LHBs) and the Padres have run out just three LHBs in each of their last three matchups against RHP. Lynn has also been consistently exceptional at home in his career (2.79 ERA, sub-3.00 ERA at home in every calendar year since 2013) and is a similar favorite to Archer (-210 for Archer, -200 for Lynn) with the same 3.5 implied total against. Lynn doesn’t come with nearly as many strikeouts but he’s far cheaper and if the Padres’ go very RH heavy against Lynn, the K upside is there. The Lynn-Archer combination should represent the chalk on DraftKings.

There are plenty of intriguing mid-tier targets to get away from Archer should you choose to load up on hitting. Danny Duffy (KC) gets a Rockies’ lineup outside of Coors Field that ranks 14th in wRC+ against LHP but with a healthy 23.6 percent K Rate. Duffy has seen his K Rate rebound strongly in recent starts and is priced very affordably at $7,600. Jeff Samardzija (SF) has really struggled of late (K Rate way down over the last month) but gets the Brewers’ strikeout prone offense in a park that destroys their best offensive attribute: power. Ricky Nolasco (LAA) is just $5,600 which is too cheap for a league average starter in a great pitching environment. You can even make the case for Jameson Taillon (PIT) against a depleted Dodgers’ offense with Cody Bellinger banged up and Taillon just $7,200. Then there are the “split-the-difference” options with Charlie Morton (HOU) and Masahiro Tanaka (NYY) both carrying more built-in strikeouts and lower implied totals but heftier price tags than the mid-tier options above. This group all profiles slightly better as tournament targets with Archer such a strong option up top, but given the immense offense on the slate it’s justifiable to consider foregoing Archer and loading up on bats with Lynn and another target from this group. On FanDuel, Jimmy Nelson (MIL) comes with a much more attractive price tag ($8,700) and earns strong consideration as a pivot off Archer in tournaments.

Catcher

Gary Sanchez (NYY) is the clear top target at the catcher position. Sanchez has been making quality contact of late (32.4% HHR over L15) and the context is strong. He’ll have the platoon edge against Matt Boyd, who tends to allow hard aerial contact (16% hard minus soft hit rate this season, 39.4% FB rate). Sanchez is viable across all formats in this slate.

Alex Avila (CHC) is the second highest projected scorer at the position and he’s just $2,800 on FD. Avila will have the platoon edge against Homer Bailey in Cincinnati. If you’re dropping down from Sanchez in cash games, Avila is our preferred alternative.

Bruce Maxwell (OAK) and Chris Iannetta (ARI) are viable punts at the position. Maxwell isn’t much of a hitter, but he’s a LHB in a matchup against Ubaldo Jimenez in Camden Yards. He’s near the stone cold minimum on DK, but you’ll have to double check his availability in the lineup before deploying (missed L2 games). Iannetta is $2,400 on FD, and he has shown the ability to hit for power vs. LHP (.169 ISO in this split since 2015).

First Base

Anthony Rizzo (CHC) is the top projected scorer at first base and second overall regardless of position. Rizzo is in Cincinnati facing Homer Bailey, who’s been awful this season. We expect Bailey to be a little bit better moving forward (.391 BABIP, 60% strand rate) but even then you’re looking at a pitcher with ERA estimators well above five. Rizzo has generated a .387 wOBA and .247 ISO vs. RHP since 2015, and he’s consistently making contact (14.5% K rate in this split). Rizzo is a great option in all formats tonight.

Paul Goldschmidt (ARI) is facing a weak LHP (Tommy Milone) in a more friendly hitting environment than usual (mid 80s temps in New York tonight, and very humid). Goldy is our favorite tournament alternative at the position and if you wanted to play him in cash games where he’s cheaper than Rizzo (FD), that’s a fine decision.

If you’re exploring cheap routes, Lucas Duda (TB) immediately stands out on both sites ($3,900 on DK, $3,300 on FD). Teammate Logan Morrison (TB) is $2,900 on FD, where he’s a viable cheap target as well. These two will have the platoon edge against Chris Rowley, a pitcher that doesn’t miss bats (13% K rate through two starts, and that’s right around where ZiPS has him moving forward this season). Unfortunately, the matchup will be in a bad hitting environment (Tropicana Field).

Other names like Chris Davis (BAL) (love the matchup vs. a pitcher that struggles to miss bats), Joey Votto (CIN), Miguel Cabrera (DET) (on DK), Tyler Austin (NYY) and Matt Olson (OAK) can be considered in tournament formats.

Second Base

Brian Dozier (MIN) carries the top projection at second base with a matchup against a young SP that’s making his season debut in a strong hitting environment. The Twins have an IRT of 5.5 runs, and Dozier is their leadoff hitter. The price tag on DK is reachable in cash games, but we love him in tournaments.

We’re looking for slightly cheaper targets at the position in cash games. Jed Lowrie (OAK) immediately stands out vs. Ubaldo Jimenez. The latter has surrendered a .359 wOBA and .218 ISO vs. LHBs since 2015, and this is a massive park shift for Lowrie and the Athletics’ offense (from a bottom five park to a top five park in terms of difference in hitting environment). Lowrie is $3,800 on DK and $3,000 on FD.

If you wanted exposure to better hitters, Jonathan Schoop (BAL) and Robinson Cano (SEA) are ways to middle this position on FD where they’re a bit more expensive than Lowrie. Schoop is at home facing a pitcher that doesn’t miss bats (Paul Blackburn), and not missing bats in Camden Yards will punish SPs. When we say Blackburn doesn’t miss bats, we really mean it – he has a sub 10% K rate through nine starts with a 5.6% SwStr rate. Cano is in SunTrust Park with the platoon edge.

Yoan Moncada (CWS) (cheap-ish on DK and Kyle Gibson is a good matchup for him), Jason Kipnis (CLE) (really strong matchup vs. Doug Fister but the price tag is correcting quickly) and Brad Miller (TB) ($2,700 on DK – he’s been ice cold of late but gets another strong matchup) are other ways to attack this position in tournaments.

Third Base

Manny Machado (BAL) represents the top projected scorer at third base. The price tag on Machado is nice on FD ($4,000) but he’s priced fully on DK. ERA estimators and luck stats say that Paul Blackburn has been pitching over his head, and we believe that confidently given the terrible K rate (9.8%)  he’s posted. Machado is viable in cash games on FD and better for tournaments on DK.

The optimal way of attacking this position differs around the industry. On DK, sub $4,000 options like Todd Frazier (NYY) and Kyle Seager (SEA) with the platoon edge in their respective matchups are the most attractive point per dollar targets.

On FD, Jose Ramirez (CLE) stands out at $3,100 in a matchup vs. Doug Fister (.375 wOBA, .201 ISO allowed to LHBs since 2015). Evan Longoria (TB) is really cheap on that site ($2,500). He’s been really cold of late but the matchup is strong.

Kris Bryant (CHC) stands out in tournaments. He’s priced accurately around the industry but the context is excellent and his HHR is on the rise (25% over the L15). Wilmer Flores (NYM) is $3,700 on DK and he’ll have the platoon edge vs. Patrick Corbin. Flores has been a little cold recently but we have a .234 ISO baseline for him in this split. He’s viable in tournaments.

Shortstop

Tim Beckham (BAL) represents the top projected scorer at the shortstop position. He’s the leadoff hitter for an Orioles offense that has an IRT approaching six runs and he’s been posting nice hard hit rates and generating great results since he got traded. He’s viable across all formats with mid-tier price tag.

While Beckham is certainly tempting and Francisco Lindor (CLE) has a great matchup and a solid price tag on FD, we’re more likely to punt this position in cash games with an inferior hitter. Adam Rosales (ARI) hits second vs. LHP and has a matchup vs. Tommy Milone. Rosales has decent pop vs. LHP (.154 ISO baseline in this split) and he carries a punt price tag around the industry. Asdrubal Cabrera (NYM) (on DK) and Eduardo Escobar (MIN) (on FD) are other cheap targets to consider though they’re a little more expensive than Rosales.

Trevor Story (COL) is just $2,500 on FD and he’ll have the platoon edge. Any park outside of Coors for the Rockies represents a steep negative park shift, but the price tag is so cheap for Story that you can consider him in tournaments.

 

Outfield

Aaron Judge (NYY) is the top projected scorer in this slate regardless of position and the price tag has dipped all the way down to $3,800 on FD. Judge has been striking out in bunches post ASB, but he profiled that way anyways (29.8% K rate in the first half of the season) and the reason you roster Judge is for the mammoth power upside (.311 ISO this season). He’ll continue to strike out a lot, but we’re comfortable deploying him in matchups against pitchers that have subpar K rates. Matt Boyd falls in that category, as he’s generated a 17% K rate this season. Judge is priced accurately on DK where a decision looms, but he’ll be very chalky on FD where he’s underpriced.

The rest of the position can be tackled in the mid-tier, where there’s a strong amount of quality options. Matt Joyce (OAK), A.J. Pollock (ARI), Kyle Schwarber (CHC), Max Kepler (MIN), Aaron Hicks (NYY), Adam Jones (BAL) (on FD), Matt Kemp (ATL) and Josh Reddick (OAK) are in excellent contexts in this slate. Joyce in particular stands out given the matchup vs. Ubaldo in Camden Yards as a leadoff hitter, but Schwarber is in Cincinnati facing Bailey and Pollock gets the underwhelming Milone in a better hitting environment than anticipated thanks to the hot weather in New York. Juan Lagares (NYM) is really cheap around the industry (stone cold minimum on FD) and he’ll have the platoon edge and hit leadoff. He’s not as good of a hitter as any of the names above, but the cheap price tag keeps him in the cash game conversation.

Mike Trout (LAA) and Jay Bruce (CLE) are upside hitters that we like in tournaments. Trout is the best hitter in baseball in a matchup against Tyson Ross, who looks nothing like the pitcher he once was (ERA over seven and ERA estimators are over six). Bruce gets Doug Fister in a strong hitting environment.

Stacks

Tier One

1) Baltimore Orioles

2) Chicago Cubs

The Orioles edge out the Cubs in our first tier thanks to a slightly higher implied run total, slightly deeper offense, and more power potential. Paul Blackburn can’t miss bats and the Fly Ball oriented nature of the Orioles’ offense should pose problems for the sinker-baller. The Cubs offense doesn’t have the same depth but plenty of power upside in Great American Ballpark against Homer Bailey (1.52 HR/9).

Tier Two

3) Seattle Mariners

4) New York Yankees

5) Arizona Diamondbacks

6) Minnesota Twins

7) Cleveland Indians

8) Oakland Athletics

9) Tampa Bay Rays

The Mariners and Yankees are also road teams against bad bullpens with plenty of power in their lineups. The price tags are a bit more affordable than the first tier and we figure each of the top five offenses will carry some ownership. This includes a Diamondbacks’ offense that is getting a big park downgrade but better suited to attack LHP with Pollock, Goldschmidt, JD Martinez, and a cheap Adam Rosales at a thin position.

The contrarian places to attack are after the top five. If any offense in the top five goes under-owned (sub – 15%), we’d be excited to attack. Minnesota is one of the most intriguing of the contrarian groups. Lucas Giolito is a top prospect that can certainly strikeout batters (24.3 K Rate at AAA with White Sox, 26.9 with Nats before) but has shown some command issues in the minors and is backed up by a horrible bullpen. The Twins are guaranteed nine innings in a good offensive environment and with Sano out, they’re sliding up cheaper hitters into more prominent lineup spots. Oakland is also intriguing with the big park shift but we want to see a slew of LHBs to attack Ubaldo’s wide platoon splits if we’re going to full stack. More likely, Oakland may serve as a source of salary relief in mini-stacks.

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