Welcome to August 6 MLB DFS action. You’ll find Daily Fantasy Baseball Premium Cliff Notes for August 6 MLB DFS along with LIVE Premium Chat. Make sure you’re using the 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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00:46 Starting Pitcher
- 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.
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August 6 MLB DFS CLIFF NOTES
Trevor Bauer (CLE) is the top overall pitcher on this slate and even at expensive price tags, we project him as a plus value. Bauer has just been lights out this season with a 2.43 FIP, 30.7 K%, and consistently working deep into games. However, there are better fits for cash game roster construction on a slate where about a third of the offenses have an IRT over 5.
Noah Syndergaard (NYM) was sharp in his return from a minor DL stint (hand-foot-mouth), most importantly showing no endurance issues (28 batters faced, completed 7 IP). That followed two starts after a lengthier DL stint in which he wasn’t as sharp. While there’s some uncertainty given a lower K rate over just three starts since May, he’s way too cheap on both sites given his effectiveness when healthy: 2.72 FIP, 25.4 K%. He’s a high -170 favorite with the lowest IRTA at 3.3. Syndergaard gives you the elite starting pitcher ceiling without forcing you to sacrifice too much on the offensive side of things.
The best mid-high priced value on both sites is Cole Hamels (CHC), who is happy to be out of Texas. While he’s back in an American League park tonight, he gets to face a little league offense in the Royals. Against LHP, we project just one Royal with a wOBA split greater than .318 and 6/9 hitters with a wOBA split of .290 or lower. It’s truly remarkable. Hamels is the largest favorite on the slate and viable on both sites but not a core play.
Charlie Morton (HOU) is caught in no man’s land a bit, out projecting Hamels, but coming in at a higher price tag than both Hamels and Syndergaard. He’s an excellent tournament pivot on FD where pricing is close but likely a non play on DK. Morton will benefit from facing a tame Giants offense in an NL park that is the most pitcher friendly in all of baseball.
We wish Zack Godley (ARI) was a touch cheaper, but he’s a really intriguing mid-tier option as a pivot off of Hamels in tournaments or possibly even a cash play on DK where the few hundred dollars savings might be necessary. After a breakout 2017, Godley has struggled this season. The good news is he’s been much better recently. Godley is coming off of a season high 10 strikeouts in a game where he posted a FIP of 1.58 or lower for the third time in four starts. The Phillies swing and miss among the most against RHP, so they’ll aid Godley’s upside.
On DK, we’d feel more comfortable getting to Godley or Hamels as the complement to Syndergaard, but if you really want to maximize offensive upside, you may need to take Nick Tropeano‘s (LAA) cap relief. He’s got strong Vegas odds (-150, 3.9 IRTA) as a result of being home in a big park against a dreadful Tigers offense that now ranks dead last in wRC+ against RHP. The concern is simply that Tropeano isn’t very good (.371 xwOBA), but hey that’s why he’s so cheap.
Additional DK tournament options include Lance Lynn (NYY) and Luke Weaver (STL) in the mid-tier. Both project to have very wide platoon splits so the makeup of opposing lineups will have a big impact on their final rankings. If you’re looking to go cheap, Homer Bailey (CIN) continues to allow hard contact but has also seen an uptick in velocity and corresponding increase in K% recently. Wei-Yin Chen (MIA) is a full on punt deserving of the Oprah sprinkle in MME.
Willson Contreras (CHC), Mike Zunino (SEA), and Robinson Chirinos (TEX) lead the way at the catcher position on Monday. Contreras is the lone option that doesn’t come with the platoon edge, drawing a matchup with right-hander Jakob Junis. Junis has flashed some potential, but also is allowing a ton of hard contact and more than 2 HR/9. At $4,100, Contreras is splitting most of the early optimals on DraftKings alongside Zunino.
Zunino will draw the platoon edge on Martin Perez, and despite a bad lineup spot – the big park shift and Texas weather make him a valuable commodity at just $3,600 on DraftKings. Zunino has posted a .238 ISO in the split since 2016 and though Perez does a decent job of keeping the ball on the ground, he’s allowed more than 2 home runs in four of his nine starts this year. Oh by the way, he also allows a ton of hard contact. Where he is just $2,100 on FanDuel – he’s finding his way into some early optimals as well.
Chirinos similarly draws the platoon edge in the Texas heat against Wade LeBlanc. LeBlanc is taking on a significant park shift as a fly ball arm that is now without the safety of Safeco Field in Seattle. While we’d prefer to save the $300 and roster Contreras, Chirinos makes for a viable pivot.
Anthony Rizzo (CHC) and Ian Desmond (COL) are the top two values at the first base position. Rizzo and the Cubs are traveling to the American League, adding significant depth to their lineup and come with an implied run total of 5.3 runs against Junis and the horrific Royals bullpen. Rizzo has been excellent against RHP since 2016, posting a .384 wOBA and .239 ISO in the split. The road leadoff hitter, he should have a great chance at five plate appearances.
Desmond will draw Joe Musgrove in his home park in Colorado. He comes a bit cheaper than Rizzo, but also is less enticing overall, coming without the platoon advantage, a worse lineup spot, and a home hitter. Nevertheless, the Rockies have an implied run total of 5.9 runs and the salary relief may allow you to pay for some of the other compelling bats on the slate.
Jose Osuna (PIT) and Ryon Healy (SEA) are next in line. Healy is actually the second most valuable player at the position on FanDuel where he is just $2,300. He should draw the fifth place lineup spot against Perez, and has been excellent in the split, posting a .215 ISO versus LHP since 2016. He and Rizzo split most of the early optimals on FanDuel. He’s firmly in play at $3,800 on DraftKings as well.
Osuna is first base eligible on DraftKings and will get the platoon edge on left-hander Kyle Freeland. He doesn’t project as a crazy power guy, but in a small sample has posted a .196 ISO versus LHP since 2016. He’s just $3,700 and makes for a good piece of Pirates stacks at a loaded position.
Greg Bird (NYY) rounds things out, getting a good park environment at Guaranteed Rate Field and the platoon edge on Dylan Covey. Covey is coming off a pair of disastrous starts and now gets a very difficult Yankees team. The lineup spot for Bird isn’t super great, but Covey can help ease the pain. Bird has posted a .203 ISO versus RHP since 2016.
Josh Harrison (PIT) is the top value at second base. He’s the road leadoff hitter getting a big park boost to Coors Field and is reasonably priced on both sites, but is most affordable at $4,100 on DraftKings. The power upside doesn’t particularly come into play for someone like Harrison, but the bigger deal is the likelihood of picking up an extra plate appearance in such a great run scoring environment. Yoan Moncada (CHW) falls just behind Harrison on DK, but graces a nearly equal split of the early optimals despite being priced at just $200 cheaper. Moncada carries more individual upside than Harrison (25 HR+SB currently) and gets a meaningful platoon edge on Lance Lynn as Lynn has allowed a .354 wOBA and .197 ISO to LHB since 2016.
Gleyber Torres (NYY) falls just behind Harrison on both sites. Torres and the Yankees draw the enticing Dylan Covey matchup and he’s been phenomenal (and even more powerful than expected) thus far. He comes with a solid lineup spot (5th) has been just as good against same handed pitching, and the Yankees have an implied run total of 5.5 runs. At $4,200 on DraftKings he would be a viable pivot away from Harrison in either format.
Dee Gordon (SEA) is actually the second most valuable guy on FanDuel. He’s just $2,700 on FanDuel and gets a nice park shift to become the road leadoff hitter in Texas. Unfortunately, he is left-on-left, which diminishes some of his overall upside on the basepaths. The batted ball data is more disgusting than anything else, and he’s being outprojected by more than a full point but still finding most of the early optimals on price alone. Neil Walker (NYY) fills a similar void at just $2,300 against Dylan Covey.
Javier Baez (CHC) should be on your radar for tournaments as he comes with some perhaps the most individual upside at the position.
Nolan Arenado (COL) and Adrian Beltre (TEX) are priced in different leagues, but are the top two value options at the position on Monday. Arenado is the expensive bat, squaring off against Joe Musgrove in his home park. Musgrove hasn’t been atrocious, but he’s now taking on a massive negative park shift and the Rockies hold an implied run total of 5.9 runs. He’s the highest projected scorer at the position, and the fifth highest on the entire slate.
Beltre will draw the platoon edge on left-hander Wade LeBlanc. He’s existed in this pricing tier for some time now and as long as he keeps getting good lineup spots and Texas stays a great place for offense, he’s going to keep being absurdly valuable. He graces most of the early optimals with a focus on fitting some top starting pitchers. He’s posted a .408 wOBA and .206 ISO versus LHP since 2016, defying age – and probably gravity.
You shouldn’t have to look too much further. Jose Ramirez (CLE) represents an excellent tournament pivot away from Arenado. The tag is nearly identical and he projects worse than Arenado, but he also comes with perhaps the next highest individual upside and should be very low owned. Plus we get him from his more powerful side of the plate, he’s posted a .249 ISO versus RHP since 2016.
Jurickson Profar (TEX) has 3B eligibility on both sites but he’s much more expensive than his teammate Beltre. He’d offer you a way to be different in Texas stacks as Beltre should draw a ton of ownership, but there is no need to force him in otherwise.
Jean Segura (SEA) and Elvis Andrus (TEX) grace the top of the shortstop value rankings. The two will square off against each other, both drawing the platoon edge and likely second place lineup spots. Segura is meaningfully cheaper on FanDuel at $3,100 as compared to $3,800 for Andrus – yet on DraftKings, Segura is actually $100 more expensive at $4,600. Andrus comes with much better batted ball data (a strong positive delta in the last fifteen days) and though we’re likely to side with Segura on FanDuel where the price discrepancy is larger, it’s a coinflip on DraftKings. They both possess similar event upside overall, but Andrus has been more powerful with the platoon edge (.175 ISO since 2016).
Few options exist outside of the top pair. Francisco Lindor (CLE) fills a similar void as his teammate Jose Ramirez, a high priced tournament alternative that should come with very low ownership. Dare we say Kyle Gibson has been pretty good this season? Nevertheless he’s still allowing a lot of hard contact.
Trevor Story (COL) is a part of the Rockies slate high 5.9 implied run total. As a result, he’s likely the high priced option that will get jammed into tournament lineups more often than Lindor. Musgrove is not big strikeout arm (18.8% K%), a silver lining for someone like Story.
Didi Gregorius (NYY) is one of the Yanks that might get lost in the shuffle thanks to the tremendous values on Segura and Andrus. He’s expensive, but Covey has been hurt by LHB (.362 wOBA, .199 ISO allowed since 2016). Didi would be another great tournament pivot, albeit one with a tough price tag.
Amed Rosario (NYM) could sneak into the equation as a very cheap piece should you spend up at multiple positions, or use two higher end starting pitchers on DraftKings.
A familiar set of matchups are exploited at the top of the outfield value ranks. Giancarlo Stanton (NYY), Charlie Blackmon (COL), and Nelson Cruz (SEA) are not only three of the highest projected scorers at the position – but also three of the most valuable. As a result, most of the early optimals on both sites are fitting in at least two of these top outfielders, making use of cheaper values at other positions. Blackmon projects the highest (Musgrove has allowed a .179 ISO to LHB since 2016) of the group in his matchup in Coors Field.
Cruz absolutely demolishes left-handed pitching (.310 ISO since 2016) and now gets Martin Perez in a boosted park for him. He’s notably cheaper than the other two on FanDuel. Giancarlo takes the cake as the cheapest option on DraftKings at just $5,000 – what feels like a small price to pay for immense power upside on the slate.
Beyond, the same matchups are being targeted with cheaper players. Mitch Haniger (SEA), Brett Gardner (NYY), and Carlos Gonzalez (COL) fill a next tier. It’s Gardner and CarGo that are filling more of the early optimals as they provide mid-tier price tags to great offensive run scoring environments. As noted above, early optimals are pushing one or two of the highest tier player, with the remaining pieces being filled in by this tier.
Michael Brantley (CLE) helps to fill the void as a one-off in some spots. He will get the platoon edge on Kyle Gibson and the story remains the same as he’s been the most affordable way to get exposure to the Indians offense.
Aaron Hicks (NYY) and the entire Cubs outfield help to fill out the top ten values at the position. Hicks is quite expensive but has posted excellent batted ball data and gets a good lineup spot as the road second place hitter. The Cubs outfield is a bit more intriguing. With the league shift, it’s likely that Ian Happ (CHC), Jason Heyward (CHC), Albert Almora (CHC), and Kyle Schwarber (CHC) will all be in the lineup. The crew is particularly valuable on DraftKings, though this isn’t necessarily (with the exception of Happ and Schwarber) the part of the Cubs lineup you’d want to focus on for upside. Jakob Junis has allowed at least three home runs in five of his starts this year.
Mike Trout (LAA) gets lost in the shuffle a little bit as a ton of values surround him at nearly identical price tags. Nevertheless he should never be completely forgotten as he gets the platoon edge on Matt Boyd. It’s laughable to even need to post the numbers, but Trout has posted a .411 wOBA and .223 ISO against LHP since 2016.
1) Colorado Rockies
The Rockies have the highest IRT on the slate. They do face Joe Musgrove who has been solid (.298 xwOBA), but ultimately Coors Field wins out. You assuredly want to grab exposure in cash games, but if the Rockies are tournament chalk, this is one of the better home spots to fade them. It’s mid-70s in Colorado while we get high 80s to 90s in many other stadiums.
2) New York Yankees
The Yankees could arguably be the top stack on the slate given the cliff that Dylan Covey has fallen off of after a surprisingly hot start to the season. Covey has given up 4-plus ERs in seven of his last eight starts, which is pretty difficult to do. The Yankees are sixth in wRC+ against RHP with the third highest ISO. At a lower cost than the Rockies, though, the Yankees are likely similarly owned.
3) Chicago Cubs
4) Seattle Mariners
5) Texas Rangers
6) Pittsburgh Pirates
The third tier stacks all rate really closely to one another. While all are viable in tournaments, the Cubs and Mariners may have the best combination of upside and ownership. The Cubs add the DH on the road in KC where 90 degree weather and a minor breeze blowing out. Jakob Junis has been destroyed by the long ball all season (2.02 HR/9).
The Mariners get a massive park shift in their favor hitting in Texas in mid-90 degree weather against Martin Perez (.382 xwOBA, 6.21 FIP). The cost on the Mariners, especially on FD, is very affordable.
7) Cleveland Indians
8) St. Louis Cardinals
Cleveland and St. Louis are okay mini stacks but we wouldn’t consider them as full stacks in anything but MME. The third tier of stacks, even beyond the Cubs and Mariners who we identified as favorites, is where you want to look if you want to deviate off of the chalkier Rockies and Yankees without sacrificing too much upside/median projection.