Welcome to August 9 MLB DFS action here at DailyRoto. Below you’ll find our Daily Fantasy Baseball Premium podcast for August 9 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 9 MLB DFS Position Timestamps
01:00 Starting Pitcher
13:18 First Base
15:54 Second Base
17:46 Third Base
- 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 9 MLB DFS CLIFF NOTES
For full SP rankings, see our projections: https://dailyroto.com/mlb-customizable-projections
After a very clear cut starting pitcher slate last night, we’re left with a challenging one to sift through on Wednesday. Zack Greinke (ARI) and Alex Wood (LAD) are the most talented starters on the slate but square off in a difficult pitching environment in Arizona against above average offenses. The game opened with a total of 8.5 which places both starters implied run total in the same range as most of the other secondary starters on the slate, who also come with cheaper price tags. Throw in Wood’s recent struggles (velocity down again to 90 mph last start and only 11 strikeouts over the last 23 ⅔ innings) and the pitching decisions are not clear.
One thing that is clear is the White Sox are one of the worst offenses in all of baseball. They did get better with Avisail Garcia activated off the DL but their lineup is very right-hand heavy and they currently rank 27th in wRC+ against RHP with a slightly above average K Rate (22.9 percent). Collin McHugh (HOU) has pitched to strong results in his return from the disabled list. He’s generating strikeouts although giving up tons of fly balls and pitched to a 3.24 ERA through three starts. The matchups have been favorable and he certainly draws another one on Wednesday with temperatures in the mid-70s and the wind blowing in. McHugh is a huge favorite on the slate (-210) and while he’s not particularly cheap, he is reasonably priced. McHugh projects similarly to Greinke or Wood from a value perspective but costs a bit less and has a matchup that feels far more secure. The downgrade from a Wood or a Greinke to McHugh costs you a few points in our optimal lineups but also gives you some additional room to load up on offense on a slate filled with it. Wood’s recent struggles have us opting for this route on DraftKings, while Greinke’s priced close enough to serve as a solid spend on FanDuel with McHugh a very viable alternative. We’d prefer to keep Wood exposure to tournaments on Wednesday night.
Finding a partner for McHugh on DraftKings is a challenge. There are a few cheap options that all garner favorable matchups but carry shaky floors. The cheapest of the bunch is Trevor Cahill (KC) who has struggled over the last three starts allowing 12 earned runs in just 12 ⅓ innings while surrendering 29 base-runners. The matchups were difficult (@SF, @BOS, vs. SEA) and most of the batted ball stuff is encouraging (low hard hit rates allowed, plenty of ground balls, etc) but the results are alarming. Fortunately, the price tag isn’t asking much ($5,600) and Cahill’s peripherals this season against RHBs have been very strong (25.3 K Rate, 53.2 GB Rate, and a slightly below average 30.9 hard hit rate allowed). The Cardinals are a RH heavy lineup and the park is favorable. Brandon Woodruff (MIL) looked great in his big league debut (6 ⅓ shutout in Tampa with a 22 percent K Rate and 15 percent hard hit rate allowed) and draws a neutral matchup with the Twins who lose a DH heading to the National League. He’s also cheap ($5,900) and like Cahill has some strikeout potential despite an annoying implied run total against (4.5). Then there is Asher Wojciechowski (CIN) who gets a great matchup with the Padres and has good strikeout potential but like Tim Adleman a few days ago struggles with the long ball and likely won’t work deep into the game. He’s the most expensive of this trio at $6,700. Mike Leake (STL) has the lowest implied total against on the slate with the Royals losing the DH in STL. He’s just $6,300 and while the run prevention projects OK, the strikeouts are a concern. This creates a low floor but he’s also in the conversation given the price tag. In general, we’re leaning towards taking the risk from one of these shaky cheap options in order to create enough salary to load up on bats.
In tournaments, the higher strikeout upside targets that are more expensive on this slate include Sean Newcomb (ATL), Masahiro Tanaka (NYY), Rick Porcello (BOS), and Gio Gonzalez (WAS). Gonzalez actually comes with a fairly reasonable price tag on FanDuel ($8,900) that earns him cash game consideration but the $11,500 asking price on DraftKings is simply too much.
Gary Sanchez (NYY) is the top catching option on the Wednesday main slate, and fortunately with no need to pay for “elite” starting pitching, his salary is a reasonable spend. Sanchez and the Yankees will get some form of a spot starter and likely a heavy dose of bullpen as Wednesday’s projected starter, Cesar Valdez, was placed on the disabled list. Starting arm aside, Sanchez comes with the most upside of any potential player at the position (.223 ISO) and has finally settled into a good lineup spot (4th).
Brian McCann (HOU) is a bit cheaper and comes with a worse lineup spot, but he’ll grab the platoon edge on Miguel Gonzalez. Gonzalez is not an arm we’re afraid to pick on (5.70 xFIP, 12.7% K%) and McCann brings you exposure to a potent Astros lineup for just $3,500 on DraftKings and $2,900 on FanDuel. Manny Pina (MIL) is a less skilled version than either of the previously mentioned catchers, but he’ll get the matchup with Bartolo Colon. The Brewers have the second highest implied run total on the slate and are back in their friendly home park for offense. Pina is even cheaper than McCann at $3,000 on DraftKings and $2,500 on FanDuel.
Yasmani Grandal (LAD), J.T. Realmuto (MIA), and Russell Martin (TOR) all lag just behind from a per dollar perspective but are three of the best offensive catching options on the slate and make for reasonable tournament alternatives.
Eric Thames (MIL) is far and away the top first base option on the slate. A dip in performance has brought down his salary to $3,700 on DraftKings and $2,900 on FanDuel and now he draws a matchup with Bartolo Colon. Big Sexy is coming off a complete game, but don’t be frightened away by his 5.08 xFIP and 1.55 HR/9. Thames provides enough value to spend up at all other positions and a ton of upside as well.
Tommy Joseph (PHI) is another cheap bat on both sites, available with the platoon edge on Sean Newcombe. Joseph’s position with the Phillies is in a weird limbo, but we’d expect him to hit in the cleanup spot against Newcombe, a handedness he’s beaten to the tune of a .279 ISO since 2015. Freddie Freeman (ATL) in the opposite side of that game will get the wide platoon splits of Jerad Eickhoff. He’s 1B eligible on DK and is an excellent spend at a position with many cheap spends.
Second base provides some cheap values in the way of Ozzie Albies (ATL) and Brad Miller (TB), but with the potential to allocate salary a bit more freely, we’re more interested in Brian Dozier (MIN) or Jose Altuve (HOU). Dozier is the cheaper option of the two and although he hasn’t posted excellent batted ball data recently, he’s found his way with the long ball, having homered four times in the last six games. He’ll be the road leadoff hitter in an excellent park and gets the young Brandon Woodruff to prey on. Altuve’s matchup with Miguel Gonzalez is certainly more appealing (the Astros have the highest implied run total on the slate), but his price tag is more difficult to swallow. At $5,600 on DraftKings, he might be out of the range of possibilities, but on FanDuel at $4,300 he’s actually our top per dollar play.
If you want to split the middle, Yangervis Solarte (SD) rates as the best option to do so. He’s extremely cheap on FanDuel at $2,500 and gives you access to a good lineup spot, a huge park upgrade and a matchup with the homer prone Asher Wojciechowski. If you’re not comfortable with grabbing the salary relief in other positions, Solarte is a great place to go in cash games.
Travis Shaw (MIL) and Eugenio Suarez (CIN) are the top two per dollar plays at the hot corner on Wednesday. Shaw has the oft-mentioned matchup with Bartolo Colon, and he’s been a masher against RHP in the last two seasons, posting a .360 wOBA and .219 ISO in over 700 plate appearances against them. Shaw is a bit more expensive, but gives you access to a premier offense on this slate.
Suarez getting the platoon edge is equally appealing, as he’ll face Travis Wood in his home park. He comes with a more accessible price tag ($3,600 on DK, $3,100 on FD) and an astounding line against LHP since 2015, having posted a .370 wOBA and .223 ISO against southpaws. Miguel Sano (MIN) rejoined the Twins lineup last night and has produced massive power against same handed pitching. Freddie Freeman (ATL) is 3B eligible on both sites and is even more of a spend, but Jerad Eickhoff has notable struggles with LHB.
Jedd Gyorko (STL) snuck back into the Cardinals lineup last night, but saw a drop in his lineup spot. He’s a great per dollar play in our model, but has a projected lineup spot of 4. Maikel Franco (PHI) also gets a fluid lineup spot but will have the platoon edge on Sean Newcomb.
Zack Cozart (CIN) fits the mold of good per dollar play with potential upside as well. Like his teammate Eugenio Suarez, he has been more than serviceable against LHP. In 240 plate appearances since 2015, Cozart has posted a .387 wOBA and .265 ISO against southpaws. At $3,300 on FanDuel, he’s the top per dollar play at the position.
On DraftKings, Cozart will cost you a bit more ($4,600), so the position is opened up to extreme salary relief options like Tyler Saladino (CHW), Jose Peraza (CIN), or Xander Bogaerts (BOS). None of these options provide the same upside, or lineup spot (though Saladino could hit 2nd) but they provide you much more salary relief and the potential to pay up at other, deeper positions. On FanDuel, Cozart is the preferred spend but Marwin Gonzalez (HOU) is SS eligible, Peraza is just $2,100, and higher upside options in Eduardo Nunez (BOS) and Corey Seager (LAD) are just $200 more expensive.
Max Kepler (MIN), Josh Reddick (HOU), and a whole host of Brewers outfielders filter in amongst the top per dollar values on both FanDuel and DraftKings on Wednesday. Kepler is coming off a multi-home run performance on Tuesday and we’re expecting to find him in the 2nd spot of the order again with the platoon edge on Brandon Woodruff. It’s a positive park shift in his favor as a left-handed bat and he’s very cheap on both sites. Reddick, Derek Fisher (HOU), and the potential return of George Springer (HOU) puts a bunch of the Astros on the map. They hold the highest implied run total at 6.9 runs, and in particular Fisher and Reddick are cheaper ways to get access to the top of the order for “cheap.” Fisher in particular has posted a positive delta in hard% over the last fifteen days and is only $3,000 on FanDuel.
Ryan Braun (MIL), Domingo Santana (MIL), and Eric Thames (MIL) (DK eligible) get Bartolo Colon. Not much needs to be said regarding the matchup, instead, the focus will be on the state of the Brewers lineup. Thames hit fifth in his last start, but had been leading off previously with Santana and Braun falling behind him. This group is extremely event oriented, providing upside for cash games and tournaments.
Corey Dickerson (TB), Billy Hamilton (CIN), and Adam Duvall (CIN) are all high upside plays that fall just behind the already mentioned groups of players in per dollar projection. Duvall and Hamilton get left-hander Travis Wood, an arm that will notably give Duvall the platoon edge, and provide an inefficient and inconsistently commanding arm of Travis Wood. To realize his upside, Billy Hamilton just needs to get on base, and with Wood walking nearly four hitters per nine it is a bit easier to project him doing so.
Giancarlo Stanton (MIA) won’t stop hitting homers and gets the platoon edge. Should we mention his .371 ISO against LHP since 2015?
1) Houston Astros
2) Milwaukee Brewers
3) Cincinnati Reds
The Astros project well ahead and almost in a tier of their own. They’re on the road in a favorable offensive environment against a fly ball prone/below average RHP. Given the hefty price tags, especially if Springer returns, and what we suspect might be a day people are hesitant to dip down for SP, we’re anxious to stack Astros in tournaments. The Brewers seem like a more popular target with softer price tags and a delightful matchup with Bartolo Colon. They have immense upside given their power and remain a fine stack target. The Reds are the contrarian top tier option. Cozart’s return brings more depth to the lineup and Travis Wood is a fly ball oriented starter being asked to pitch in a small ballpark.
4) Minnesota Twins
5) Atlanta Braves
6) Los Angeles Dodgers
7) Washington Nationals
8) San Diego Padres
The second tier we like a bit more for one-offs and small mini-stacks. The Dodgers get a tough matchup with Greinke but have plenty of power to attack in a small ballpark. The Braves have Freddie Freeman who projects as one of our top overall hitters against a pitcher with wide platoon splits and a bad bullpen behind him. The Nationals middle of the order is strong against LHP but the top is less compelling.