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7/26 MLB DFS: A National Treasure at SP

7/26 MLB DFS: A National Treasure at SP
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Daily Fantasy Rundown – July 26th MLB DFS Picks and Analysis

Welcome to Sunday’s edition of the Daily Fantasy Rundown with “leonem”, “dinkpiece” and “thenumbersguy”. Each day throughout the MLB season our daily MLB scouting reports will highlight the best top, value and cheap plays of the day based on the Daily Fantasy Industry’s pricing for salary cap games. The goal of our analysis is to help you improve consistency and become a better player long-term.

Glossary: See a term you’re unfamiliar with? Check out our glossary page. If there’s something you’d like to see added there, please email us at

Weather:  Slight ppd risk in STL. Minor delay risks in NYM, MIN, COL and BOS. COL’s hitting environment is off the charts great while the wind is blowing out in BOS as well.

Please see Meteorologist Mark Paquette’s game by game weather forecasts below the Analysis.

If any weather situations shift drastically, we will keep you updated with lineup alerts so make sure to check your email inbox up until roster lock.


Value Plays:

Michael McKenry (COL) – We expect McKenry will get the start on Sunday as Nick Hundley has caught six straight including back-to-back night games. McKenry always ranks well in our model because he’s demonstrated power against both RHP and LHP in a brief major league career. He’s played about half of his games in a great pitcher’s park and half in Coors Field and he’s compiled a career .167 ISO while the projection systems peg him for an ISO closer to .195-.200 in Coors Field. I don’t expect a good lineup spot with the Rockies fully healthy again but the price tag is discounted and he’s the most skilled of the potential Coors Field catchers on Sunday. Opposing starter, Michael Lorenzen, has allowed a 1.11 HR/9 to RHBs and owns a 5.51 FIP this season. He’s arguably the weakest starter on the slate and pitching in the toughest ballpark. McKenry is one of the more affordable ways to get exposure to Colorado, but you’ll need to confirm he’s in the lineup before locking him in on sites without late swap.

Brayan Pena/Tucker Barnhart (CIN) – It’s debatable whether Lorenzen or Kendrick is the worse starter in this game. Kendrick has allowed a .337 wOBA and 1.12 HR/9 to LHBs since 2012. Neither Barnhart (.313 wOBA, .114 ISO) nor Pena (.302 wOBA, .093 ISO) are great hitters but they’re cheap and come with good lineup spots. Pena typically hits fifth which is great for RBI opportunities and expected plate appearances, while Barnhart typically hits seventh which is in front of the pitcher and great for Walt Weiss’ affinity for the intentional walk. Unlike Colorado, the Reds typically have their lineups out with plenty of time to spare, so I assume we’ll know which one is in before lock.

Matt Wieters (BAL)/Yan Gomes (CLE) – Wieters and Gomes are basically the same option on Sunday. They have historically crushed LHP and are far too cheap for their historical performance. I give Wieters a slight edge on Gomes due to favorable lineup spot and as the road team he’s more likely to accumulate an extra plate appearance. In addition, he’s a switch hitter that won’t’ lose the platoon advantage, but they rank very close. Since 2012, Wieters has compiled a .365 wOBA and .225 ISO against lefties. He’s getting a huge park downgrade and the total is just seven but Matt Moore has been an abomination since returning from Tommy John Surgery. Moore has posted a 5.91 xFIP fueled by a brutal 12.5 K Rate and 11.4 BB Rate. He’s giving up a 35.4 percent hard hit rate and 43.8 percent fly ball rate but hasn’t been crushed by homers in part due to pitching in great parks. Yan Gomes has compiled a .356 wOBA and .193 ISO against LHP since 2012 and faces Carlos Rodon who has allowed a .373 wOBA and 35.1 percent hard hit rate to RHBs at the major league level. Admittedly, Wieters and Gomes hasn’t looked much like themselves either against LHP this year, but I’m willing to overlook it given the soft prices. I think Coors exposure at catcher is the safer play, but Wieters or Gomes are a viable alternative.

Additional catcher notes: Kyle Schwarber (CHC) and Victor Martinez (DET) are the top catchers (where eligible) for this slate, but I think you’ll want to prioritize spending on bats in Coors Field in cash games. As is typically the case, Coors Field bumps many hitters in our model but it’s especially the case when Michael Lorenzen and Kyle Kendrick are the starters. On loose pricing sites, they’re fine plays at catcher, but more likely tournament plays around the industry. Brian McCann (NYY) is the other tournament play at the position, but only as part of a stack or mini-stack for the Yankees.

First Base

Top Play:

Joey Votto (CIN) – Votto is our top overall hitter on Sunday. Yes, he’s a great hitter in Coors Field, but he’s also facing one of the weakest starters on the slate. Votto has compiled a .416 wOBA and .201 ISO against RHP since 2012. There are a few prominent first basemen in very favorable matchups that are priced well below Votto, so he’s not a must play; but he does rank as our top first base option. Despite the high price tag, our system even likes him as a value.

Next in line: Paul Goldschmidt (ARI) (elite talent and at home, but if you’re paying up in cash games it has to be for Votto)

Value Play:

David Ortiz (BOS) – Ortiz gets to face Shane Greene who has been tormented by LHBs throughout his career. He’s allowed a .382 wOBA to lefties in his career and a .420 wOBA this season including a .349/.407/.591 line. Oritz owns a .406 wOBA and .278 ISO against RHP since 2012 and has shown no deterioration in skills against RHP despite his advanced age. The Red Sox have a team total approaching five, which isn’t far off the Reds-Rockies team totals and Ortiz comes at a much cheaper price tag. He ranks inside our Top 10 overall hitters and is our second ranked hitter outside of Coors Field options.

Additional first base notes: Albert Pujols (LAA) ranks a bit below Ortiz and is generally priced above him around the industry. He has a terrific matchup with Nick Martinez who has allowed a .357 wOBA and 1.11 HR/9 to RHBS since 2012 and admittedly the baseline in our model is likely low given the immense season Pujols is having. On sites where the price is similar to Ortiz, he’s a fine alternative. Anthony Rizzo (CHC) ranks well in our model (Top 15) given his immense skills against RHP and a pessimistic baseline projection on Aaron Nola transitioning from AA to the majors this season. Nola has outperformed that baseline expectation and Rizzo is slumping, so I consider him more of a secondary value or a tournament play. Victor Martinez (DET) is the other secondary value play. Eduardo Rodriguez hasn’t struggled with lefties but the Tigers get a nice park shift and are predominantly right handed which makes them very dangerous against lefties. Given Danny Salazar‘s historical issues with the long ball, Adam LaRoche (CHW) and Jose Abreu (CHW) are intriguing at discounted price tags. I’m more likely to consider them in tournaments.

Second Base

Top Play:

Brandon Phillips (CIN) – Phillips is such an ordinary hitter against RHP (.310 wOBA, .123 ISO since 2012) that it’s difficult to endorse him as a top play. In Coors Field, against Kyle Kendrick (.340 wOBA, 1.29 HR/9 allowed to RHBs since 2012), it becomes easier. The second base position is a bit muddled on Sunday, but Phillips gives you exposure to the most expected plate appearances at a thin position.

Value Play:

Johnny Giavotella (LAA) – Giavotella is just like Phillips but far cheaper and in a worse hitting environment. He’s compiled a measly .286 wOBA and .082 ISO against RHP as a big leaguer, but he leads off for a very potent Angels’ offense that faces Nick Martinez. For a near minimum price tag around the industry, he’s a fine way to get exposure to a top tier offense at low price tag.

Additional second base notes: D.J. LeMahieu (COL) isn’t significantly different than Phillips. He’s an ordinary hitter that gets a premier lineup spot in an extraordinary hitting environment. He’s generally more expensive than Phillips, who we slightly prefer, but is fine where priced similarly. The rest of the potential value plays at second base are cluttered. Kolten Wong (STL) is probably the best combination of skill set (.354 wOBA, .182 ISO this season against RHP), matchup, and price tag; but he could get surpassed by other alternatives if they get good lineup spots. Scooter Gennett (MIL) has a favorable matchup with Jeremy Hellickson (.319 wOBA, 1.15 HR/9 allowed to LHBs) but hasn’t been hitting high of late. With Jonathan Lucroy likely to rest, Gennett could hit second and see a nice boost in value. If the Reds choose to rest Brandon Phillips, we could see Ivan DeJesus (CIN) or Skip Schumaker (CIN) in a great lineup spot at a great price point. Ian Kinsler (DET) is a fine tournament option as part of a Tigers stack or mini-stack. He’s very expensive but a nice park shift and good lineup make him viable in tournaments.


Top Play:

Troy Tulowitzki (COL) – Tulowitzki is our top overall shortstop (no surprise) and ranks inside our Top Five overall hitters. The risk with Tulowitzki is he’s played every day since the All Star Break and is a prime candidate to rest. With Walt Weiss notoriously late in getting lineups out, I would not trust Tulowitzki on an early lock site without confirmation that he is in the lineup before lock. The matchup is great. Lorenzen is heavily reliant on his fastball (throws it 67 percent of the time) and it’s a really poor pitch (-6.9 runs) while Tulowitzki still generates most of his value against fastballs (+6.6 runs on the season, +124.8 runs for his career).

Value Play:

Erick Aybar (LAA) – If you’re not spending all the way up for Tulowitzki, I believe Aybar is your most likely alternative. Nick Martinez has allowed a .337 wOBA and 10.7 percent BB Rate to LHBs as a big leaguer. Aybar isn’t a good hitter (.303 wOBA, .098 ISO against RHP) but hits fifth behind Calhoun, Trout, and Pujols so like Giavotella his Fantasy value is lifted by those around him. With a very cheap price tag, Aybar is a way to get exposure to one of the better offenses on Sunday without much opportunity cost.

Additional shortstop notes: The Red Sox shortstops are viable alternatives on FanDuel and DraftKings due to price points. Hanley Ramirez (BOS) comes with shortstop eligibility and a wonderful price tag on DraftKings. He’s a great pivot from Tulowitzki if Tulo sits (given Hanley is in the late game). Xander Bogaerts (BOS) is priced favorably on FanDuel and gets a great lineup spot against Shane Greene. Greene has been far more vulnerable to LHBs (.420 wOBA) than RHBs (.316 wOBA) which is why I view them more as alternatives to Tulowitzki or Aybar.

Third Base

Top Play:

Todd Frazier (CIN) – Frazier isn’t historically the hitter that teammate Joey Votto is against RHP (.345 wOBA, .201 ISO) but he’s made big strides this season (.377 wOBA, .255 ISO) and the Rockies bullpen is comprised of four left handed relievers which ups the probability of favorable late inning matchups. He’s a Top 10 overall hitter and although he’s very expensive around the industry, he’s clearly our top third base option. With less opportunity cost at third base, I find myself prioritizing Frazier over Votto on sites with individual positions (instead of 1B/3B or Infield) simply because it’s more difficult to fill third base.

Next in line: Nolan Arenado (COL) – left yesterday’s game early after getting hit on the hand so perhaps more lineup risk than typical.

Value Play:

Pablo Sandoval (BOS) – Sandoval has been dreadful this season (.255/.299/.366) but against RHP he’s been a bit better (.285/.333/.439) and at home against RHP he’s been viable (.321/.363/.462). Since 2012, he’s compiled a .347 wOBA and .161 ISO against RHP despite playing most of his games in a brutal hitting environment in San Francisco. Shane Greene‘s immense struggles against LHBs coupled with Sandoval’s near minimum price tag make him a fine value. The one knock on Sandoval is that he typically hits sixth and on the home team that puts his expected plate appearances barely at four. The price tag and matchup mitigate some of those concerns, but we’d prefer he hit fifth (and we won’t know until late in the afternoon). He’s an adequate source of salary relief at a thin position.

Additional third base notes: The rest of the third base position is more difficult to decipher, according to our model. Kris Bryant (CHC) and Miguel Sano (MIN) are great tournament plays given their immense power upside. Neither comes with a severe discount so they’re better in tournaments. Nick Castellanos (DET) and Jake Lamb (ARZ) are compelling options given their price point and platoon splits, but the lineup spots aren’t always favorable. Alex Rodriguez (NYY) is having a renaissance but Kyle Gibson has typically been GB dominant against RHBs (56 percent) which is a poor matchup for his power. He’ll also likely go over-owned after a three homer night. Carlos Santana (CLE) and Manny Machado (BAL) have favorable matchups for getting on base against wild lefties, but the price points are highly variable. If you can find a soft tag, feel free to exploit.


Top Plays:

Mike Trout (LAA) – Incredibly, Trout still ranks ahead of all the Coors Field outfield options despite playing in a game with a total that is three runs lower. It speaks to Trout’s elite skills (.418 wOBA, .264 ISO) against RHP and to Nick Martinez‘s skill set. Trout is generally priced a little bit above the Coors outfielders and they all rank closely, so I’m more likely to play the outfielders in Coors Field, but Trout slightly outpaces them for our top overall outfield spot.

Rockies Outfielders – Our system prefers Carlos Gonzalez‘s skill-set over Charlie Blackmon‘s lineup spot, but they always rank closely. Corey Dickerson‘s skill-set against RHP is our favorite of the bunch but he’s been hitting sixth which really drags down his value. If he gets bumped (Tulo or Arenado out?), he could become the best option of the group. Lorenzen has been tattooed by LHBs (.421 wOBA, 1.95 HR/9 at the big league level) which makes exposure to the Rockies outfield the most direct way to attack him. When taking into account price and likely lineup spot, I’d rank them Gonzalez, Blackmon, and then Dickerson; but if Dickerson was to slide into the Top Five I’d push him to the top of the list.

Jay Bruce (CIN) – Bruce ranks favorable to Blackmon and Dickerson in our model. He’s compiled a .341 wOBA and .219 ISO against RHP since 2012 and gets a favorable matchup with Kyle Kendrick. I’ve manually pushed Bruce below the Rockies outfielders due to the respective bullpen situations. While the Reds have just one LH reliever in their pen (closer – Chapman), the Rockies have four. Bruce is far more likely to see his platoon advantage disappear late in the game (.313 wOBA, .204 ISO against LHP since 2012). While he’s still hit for power against LHP, the probabilities of success come down a bit. He’s still a fine play, but I’m more likely to prioritize the Rockies outfielders above Bruce.

Value Plays:

Marlon Byrd (CIN) – Byrd didn’t deliver for us on Saturday night but he again represents one of the cheaper ways to get exposure to the Reds offense. I’m much more likely to use him if he’s hitting fifth than sixth, so the lineup will help dictate his value. Kyle Kendrick hasn’t handled RHBs well, the Rockies bullpen has four lefties, and Byrd has posted a .177 ISO against RHP since 2012. He cracks our Top 20 hitters overall.

Rajai Davis (DET) – Davis is one of our favorite platoon plays. He hits leadoff against LHP and owns an impressive .368 wOBA and .172 ISO against LHP since 2012. The park shift to Fenway is a good one for RH power and Davis is very cheap around the industry. He ranks inside our Top 25 hitters overall and isn’t priced that way around the industry.

Ender Inciarte (ARZ) – Inciarte has been a recent staple of our value plays section. He’s leading off and has big speed potential in a great park. Matt Garza has allowed a .320 wOBA and 1.16 HR/9 to LHBs since 2012 while Inciarte has compiled a .323 wOBA against RHP and stolen 25 bases in 520 plate appearances at the big league level.

Hanley Ramirez (BOS) – We touched on Hanley briefly in our shortstop notes section. Shane Greene has mostly struggled with LHBs but Hanley’s price is down around the industry and the Red Sox have a team total pushing five. He’s got a .351 wOBA and .186 ISO against RHP since 2012, hits in the middle of the order, and likely will get some quality plate appearances against a very poor Tigers bullpen.

Kole Calhoun (LAA) – Calhoun owns a modest .337 wOBA but impressive .175 ISO against RHP since 2012. Nick Martinez has really struggled at the big league level and he’s backed up by primarily a right handed bullpen. Calhoun ranks a bit behind Ramirez in our model, but on sites like DraftKings where he’s cheaper, he’s a fine alternative. I’m more likely to spend up for Coors exposure than on Calhoun or Hanley which makes them secondary value plays.

Punt Play:

Nolan Reimold (BAL)/Ryan Raburn (CLE) – This is incredibly similar to the Wieters/Gomes duo. Reimold and Raburn are both min priced around the industry and have historically hit LHP well. Reimold has compiled just a .318 wOBA but a .199 ISO and 34.1 percent hard hit rate against LHP since 2012. Raburn has posted a .329 wOBA and .193 ISO during that same span against lefties. Both are facing lefties with intriguing stuff but all sorts of command issues. Rodon has allowed a .373 wOBA, 14.3 percent BB Rate, and 35.1 percent hard hit rate to RHBs at the big league level while Moore has walked 14.1 percent of RHBs on his way to a .398 wOBA allowed since returning from Tommy John Surgery. Both carry pinch hit risk late into the game, but the minimum price tags allow you to get exposure to Coors Field. Raburn’s lineup spot, and thus his value, is more solidified; but Reimold could match his value if he’s hitting second.

Additional outfield notes: The Brewers and Tigers outfielders are secondary top plays that make strong targets in tournaments. Ryan Braun (MIL), Carlos Gomez (MIL), J.D. Martinez (DET), and Yoenis Cespedes (DET) all crack our Top 25 overall hitters.

Starting Pitcher

Rankings (price not considered):

Tier One

1) Zack Greinke (LAD)

2) Gerrit Cole (PIT)

3) Danny Salazar (CLE)

4) Jacob deGrom (NYM)

Tier Two

5) Michael Wacha (STL) – weather risk

6) Jason Hammel (CHC)

7) Dallas Keuchel (HOU)

8) Mat Latos (MIA)

9) Andrew Heaney (LAA)

Top Play:

Gerrit Cole (PIT) – The Nationals lineup got a big boost last night with the return of Anthony Rendon, but they’re still without Denard Span and Ryan Zimmermann. We’ve got the top four starters all ranked very closely in our model and Cole is the best combination of price point and consistency. Cole has posted a quality start in 16 of 19 starts this year and oddly all three of his non-quality starts came against the Reds. Cole has all the qualities you look for in a cash game starter. He controls the zone (5.6 percent BB Rate), generates whiffs (24.5 percent K Rate, 9.8 percent swinging strike rate), gets ground balls (52 percent GB Rate) and pitches in a great pitching environment. He’s a strong favorite (-180) in a game with a total of just seven. If you’re paying up for starting pitching, I believe Cole is the best option in cash games. He has a similar floor and ceiling to Greinke and deGrom at a far cheaper price point, while more stability at a similar price point (on many sites) to Danny Salazar.

Next in line:

Danny Salazar (CLE) – Salazar’s price point varies around the industry, but our model loves his strikeout capability when matched up with a White Sox offense that ranks 27th in wRC+ against RHP. Salazar has the highest K Rate of any starter in action on Sunday (28.8 percent) but the run prevention (3.78 ERA) brings volatility to his profile. He’s better suited for tournaments given the volatile nature of his performance (10-17 in quality starts), but the strikeout upside in the matchup push him into the first tier in our model’s rankings.

Michael Wacha (STL) – Wacha is pretty much the exact opposite of Salazar. The strikeout potential is limited against a contact heavy Braves lineup but the threat of giving up runs is modest. The Braves have the lowest implied run total of any team in action (2.7 runs) on Sunday and Wacha is tied for the largest favorite of the day with Jason Hammel and the Cubs (-230). The lower expected K Rate pushes him down a bit in our model but I’ve manually adjusted him to where I personally would take him (if all prices equal).

Value Plays:

Mat Latos (MIA) – This feels all sorts of wrong. I spent most of spring training and the early part of the season proclaiming that Latos was done and he was useless in Fantasy. His velocity ticked down and he stopped missing bats last season in Cincinnati. I saw some proclaiming him a sleeper due to park shift and I thought it was likely he was hurt and forever changed. He struggled early in the season and I thought I was a genius. But since coming back from a DL stint in May, something has changed. The velocity was back in the 92-93 range instead of the 90-91 range and Latos reeled off an impressive 31:8 K:BB ratio in his first five starts back (32 1/3 innings). Last time out, Latos shutout the Diamondbacks over seven innings in Arizona but the velocity was back down to 90-91 mph. The K Rate and swinging strike rate were awesome in the game, but admittedly I’d feel even better if Latos maintained the nice velocity bump. The matchup in PETCO against the Padres (25th in wRC+ and fifth highest K Rate against RHP) is a fantastic one to pick on an affordable price tag.

Andrew Heaney (LAA) – Heaney’s price tag really stands out on FanDuel where he’s just $7,000 and is a huge -205 favorite against the Rangers. The Rangers rank 27th in wRC+ against LHP and are getting a big downgrade in park while playing in Anaheim. The majority of their premier hitters come from the left side where Heaney will hold the platoon advantage and they have the sixth highest strikeout rate against LHP in MLB. Heaney has earned tremendous results in his small sample this season, but he’s also benefited from some phenomenal luck. Heaney’s 40.2 percent hard hit rate allowed would rank as the worst in the entire big leagues if he had thrown enough innings and a .223 BABIP allowed simply doesn’t make sense given the amount of hard contact. Heaney isn’t as safe as his recent performance suggests, but this is a very good matchup. The Rangers project well below average against LHP and are experiencing a negative park shift and Heaney should have plenty of run support while going up against Nick Martinez.

Additional starting pitcher notes: Each of the two tiers above are very closely bunched together. In general, it’s best to let price guide you. We’ve tried to highlight those we feel are most consistently cheap around the industry, but use the rankings and compare to the prices on the site you’re playing on. Any of the pitchers within our top two tiers are viable cash game plays. Beyond those tiers, there are additional options that earn tournament consideration. Joe Ross (WAS) has been phenomenal in his brief major league debut, including a dominant outing against a RH heavy Pirates lineup. His repertoire and delivery are very similar to brother Tyson Ross who has been effective against righties and vulnerable to lefties throughout his career. The Pirates are a good offense on the whole, but Ross has shown big upside before against them. Wei-Yin Chen (BAL) ranks well in our model as the Rays offense projects as below average against LHP. They currently rank third in wRC+ against LHP but the projections call for a steep fall off. Chen is getting a big park shift, but the price isn’t as friendly as I had hoped. Carlos Rodon (CHW) has big strikeout upside but the command is a consistent issue. The Indians rank among the league leaders in BB percentage against LHP and are sixth in pitches per plate appearance. The strikeouts and a cheap tag earn some tournament consideration but I think this isn’t a bad appearance to skip while trying to time Rodon’s potential breakout. Aaron Nola (PHI) looked great in his debut and the Cubs have a lot of swing and miss in them. I’m worried he might be popular given the bargain bin price tag and the Cubs just getting no-hit on Saturday. I do think he’s a good tournament play due to the Cubs strikeout issues, his skills, and the price but I’m slightly concerned about ownership. Yordano Ventura (KC) is a potential tournament pivot against the strikeout prone Astros. Obviously the Astros are a plus offense overall and Ventura has struggled but he’s generated strikeouts and they do strike out. I imagine he’ll come with far less ownership than Nola.

Macro Thinking, Stacks, and Tournament Notes:

This is a new section we’ve created to try and offer more dedicated macro thinking to our analysis and hopefully add more value to those playing tournaments. The format is a bit of a work in progress and we welcome feedback ( if you have suggestions.

Top Tournament Stacks/Cash Game Mini Stacks:

1) Cincinnati Reds

2) Colorado Rockies

Yes, it’s redundant to stress Coors Field so significantly but with two of the weaker pitchers in baseball pitching in the best environment in baseball, it make sense to target. They’re also backed up by very weak pens. With a plethora of pitching options across the pricing spectrum, we believe it’s viable to prioritize Coors Field bats in cash games. We prefer the Rockies offense over the Reds if everyone is healthy, but the Reds propensity to get their lineups out early and the Rockies tendency to rest guys on Sunday makes the Reds exposure the likely safer bet on early lock sites.

Contrarian/Secondary Stacks:

1) Boston Red Sox

2) Los Angeles Angels

3) Detroit Tigers

4) New York Yankees

5) Chicago Cubs

6) Arizona Diamondbacks

The Red Sox and Tigers should experience low ownership in all tournaments because the Sunday Night game doesn’t come with a lineup. The game has the second highest total of the night and should be attacked in tournaments. Both managers are pretty predictable with their lineups. I think the Tigers are a slightly better full stack (Davis-Cespedes-Martinez-Martinez-Castellanos) while the Red Sox are a better mini-stack (Betts-Ortiz-Ramirez-Sandoval/Holt).

The Angels face one of the weakest starters and have a nice combination of values and top end plays to make the stack work.

The Yankees face Kyle Gibson who has a history of volatility. Gibson has made improvements this season but when he’s off, he usually gives up runs in bunches. The Twins bullpen behind him is weak and the Yankees are a very good offense. The Cubs are an intriguing contrarian stack after getting no hit on Saturday. They’ll get Kyle Schwarber back into the lineup which creates great depth and the Phillies have one of the worst pens in all of baseball. Nola is an intriguing prospect that performed well in his debut so I think the Cubs will fly way under the radar. The Diamondbacks (and to a lesser extent the Brewers) are viable options as well. The Brewers lose a lot of their value if Adam Lind (left Saturday early) can’t go which is why I didn’t list them. Matt Garza has struggled mightily this season and the Diamondbacks are a solid offense at home with a bit more depth against RHP now that Inciarte is back.

MLB Game Weather Forecasts

In the scales below, a 10 strongly favors the batter, a 1 strongly favors the pitcher and a 5 has no impact on the game.

LAD at NYM 1:10: A few scattered thunderstorms around. Worst case scenario is a delay (20 to maybe 30% chance of that). The thunderstorms will develop as the game is played (fancy way of saying the beginning of the game should be dry). Temps in the low to mid 80s. Air density is a 7 or an 8. Wind southwest 5-10 mph which blows out to center. The wind is a 6.

CHW at CLE 1:10: Dry. Temps in the low 80s. Air density is a 7. Wind north 6-12 mph which blows out to center. The wind is a 6.

BLT at TB 1:10: Dome.

WSH at PIT 1:35: A 10% chance of a delay due to a widely scattered thunderstorm around. Temps in the low 80s. Air density is a 7 or an 8. Wind west-northwest 6-12 mph which blows out to center. The wind is a 6.

HOU at KC 2:10: Dry. Temps in the low to mid 90s. Air density is a 9. Wind south 7-14 mph which blows out to left. The wind is a 6.

NYY at MIN 2:10: A 10% chance of a delay due to a thunderstorm. Temps in the low to mid 80s. Air density is an 8. Wind southeast 7-14 mph which blows in from right. The wind is a 4.

ATL at STL 2:15: Somewhere between numerous and scattered thunderstorms around, some containing gusty winds and some hail. I think the ppd risk is low (~10%) and there is a 20-30% chance of a delay. Temps in the upper 80s. Air density is a 9. Wind south 6-12 mph which blows out to left. The wind is a 6.

PHL at CHC 2:20: Dry. Temps in the mid-80s. Air density is a 7. Wind east 7-14 mph which blows in from right. The wind is a 4.

TEX at LAA 3:35: Dry. Temps in the mid-70s. Air density is a 7. Wind west-southwest 8-16 mph which blows out to right. The wind is a 6.

OAK at SF 4:05: Dry. Temps in the low 70s. Air density is a 6. Wind west 10-20 mph which blows out to center. The wind is a 9.

TOR at SEA 4:10: Retractable roof. Scattered showers around. Temps in the mid to upper 60s. Air density is a 6 if the roof is open. Wind southwest 6-12 mph which blows out to center if the roof is open. The wind is a 6.

MIA at SD 4:10: Dry. Temps in the mid to upper 70s. Air density is a 7. Wind west-southwest 8-16 mph which blows from left to right. The wind is a 5.

CIN at COL 4:10: A 20% chance of a delay due to a thunderstorm, little or no risk of a ppd (<10%). Temps near 90. Air density is a 10. Wind south-southwest 10-20 mph which blows out to right-center. The wind is a 9.

MIL at AZ 4:10: Retractable roof. Dry. Temps in the mid to upper 100s. With this heat, the roof will likely be closed. But if it is open, air density is a 9 approaching a 10 (nothing can ever be a 10 with Coors Field in Colorado around). Wind west-southwest 8-16 mph which blows from left to right. The wind is a 5.

DET at BOS 8:00: Widely scattered thunderstorm around. Very low ppd risk (<10%) with a 20% chance of a delay. Temps near 80 falling into the low to mid 70s. Air density is a 7. Wind south 8-16 mph which blows out to left. The wind is a 7.

MLB Daily Analysis