Although it’s Sunday, there is no rest for DFS MLB players out there. In fact, there is more work to be done this day then on others typically. A full onslaught of games starting at one is great for our viewing, but tough on our decision-making. Make sure you keep your ear to the ground and make sure you don’t take any unnecessary risks on this day.
**All stats used do not include Saturday’s action.
I’m not going to go obvious with Stephen Strasburg against the Phillies, so I’ll start with Gerrit Cole against the Brew Crew. He pitched decent against the Reds to start the season, but pitched phenomenally in the win over the Tigers. On the season he has thrown 11 innings and given up just eight hits and four walks. He has the potential for a high strikeout game as he has already mowed down 14 hitters this season. Without Carlos Gomez, this Brewers offense doesn’t seem all that powerful anymore. Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez, and Jonathan Lucroy have all struggled to start the season and have yet to hit a home run.
Scott Kazmir is another guy who has started off the season very well. He has allowed just one run, four hits, and five walks in 13 innings. Another great strikeout candidate, Kazmir has struck out 18 batters to start the season. This Royals offense has lost some very solid bats in the past week with Alex Rios and Alcides Escobar going down. The speed will get neutralized due to being left handed, and guys like Moustakas and Hosmer won’t have great matchups.
Brandon McCarthy has some pretty odd stats so far in 2015. He has missed a ton of bats, as he has 19 strikeouts in just 12 innings this season, but he has struggled to avoid home runs. His six home runs allowed has pushed his ERA all the way to 6.75 on the season. I think against the Rockies he can be a bit better in that department today. This Rockies offense hasn’t exactly tore it up outside of Coors Field. They have scored just 13 runs in four games on this current road trip.
Yasmani Grandal was a recommended play the other night in the premium content against a RHP, and he’ll face another today. Eddie Butler has allowed 10 walks and nine hits in his first two starts, so the potential of Grandal giving you a zero seem very slim. If he hits in the five hole again then he’ll have plenty of RBI opportunities with the way Butler puts guys on base.
Derek Norris will have a great matchup going up against Jon Lester and his struggling ways today. He has hit LHP very well in his career (.298 average compared to .206 and .379 wOBA compared to .277) and Lester is struggling to start the season. He should also be hitting second or fifth in the order.
Eddie Butler has limited innings in his career (27), but they show some very alarming numbers. Left-handed batters have a wOBA of .522 against him with eight of the 17 hits against him going for extra bases. For that reason, I think Adrian Gonzalez is one of the best plays of the day. He’s crazy hot and if his price isn’t showing that hot streak he’s a great guy to go with here.
Tom Koehler gave up just five home runs to LHB last season in 99.2 innings pitcher, but has already given up three in just two starts. In 2014 Koehler showed reverse splits, but I still like Lucas Duda in this matchup. Something is clearly not working for Koehler and Duda is hot. He’s going to be lower owned compared to guys like Miguel Cabrera and Adrian Gonzalez giving you a nice lower owned option. Duda had a wOBA of .394 against RHP last season.
I’ve been mentioning some big names so far, so here’s a value play to fit them in: Danny Espinosa. The Nationals’ second basemen hits in the bottom half of the order, but gets a really good matchup against Buchanan. His 11.42 ERA is the second worst of all starters on the day. With him being a switch hitter, you never really have to worry about him getting too tough of a matchup.
If you want to spend up at this position then I would look to Brian Dozier. He faces the worst ERA of the day (T.J. House, 40.50) and crushes LHP. He posted a .351 wOBA against them last season. House allowed a .357 wOBA in his 2014 rookie season.
Ian Desmond can’t field a baseball right now as he notched his eighth error of the season on Saturday, but he’s really swinging it as of late. His .324 wOBA against RHP last season was pretty solid and Buchanan isn’t going to overpower him. This is a plus matchup for him especially with Harper having a great matchup and hitting right behind him in the order.
Stephen Drew is a punt option against Tampa Bay and Matt Andriese. He’s a good source of power (three home runs in last five games) and Andriese isn’t anything special. He didn’t make it out of the fourth inning in his last start.
It’s really hard for me not to like Chris Davis against Rick Porcello with the way Porcello struggles against LHB. In his career, he has given up a .349 wOBA against them. Davis is playing with three hits in his last two games before Saturday’s action. Jose Iglesias is hitting very well for the Tigers right now and gets to face a LHP in Jose Quintana. He had the game-winning hit on Friday and has put up some very surprising numbers. He has four stolen bases and three extra base hits on the season.
Bryce Harper gets a really good matchup as I’ve already discussed and is red-hot. He has crushed home runs in back-to-back games including Saturday. His price hasn’t changed a whole lot if any on DraftKings meaning you get big value out of him. Not surprisingly, Mike Trout is a very good pick today and actually costs more than the pitcher he faces on DraftKings. Scott Feldman is hit matchup and is coming off a game where he gave up three home runs and ten walks in his last start.
If Paulo Orlando continues to see time at the top of the lineup he could be a very good punt option today. He has a hit in each of the four games he has played in this season with four triples. His matchup isn’t that great with him facing Kazmir, but at least he is a right-handed hitter. Not to keep harping on this same matchup, but Michael Taylor has seen time in the leadoff position at times and would be a great option there again to save some salary. With Yunel Escobar injured, he should be hitting leadoff again today.
David Dejesus is one mid-range play that should pay nice dividends. He’s a top of the order hitter for the Rays facing a questionable Michael Pineda. He has given up 15 hits in 12.1 innings on the season. His seven earned runs allowed also leaves him with a rough ERA (5.11).