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July 5 MLB DFS: Do As You’re Told, Play Gold
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July 5 MLB DFS: Do As You’re Told, Play Gold

00:39 Starting Pitchers
09:03 Catchers
11:02 First Base
15:24 Second Base
17:14 Shortstop
19:06 Third Base
21:25 Outfield
26:36 Cash Game Roster Construction & Stacks



July 5 MLB DFS Pro Tip

Starting Pitcher Rankings

Tier One

1) Madison Bumgarner (SF)

Tier Two

2) Kenta Maeda (LAD)

3) Carlos Carrasco (CLE)

Tier Three

4) Gio Gonzalez (WAS)

5) Steven Matz (NYM)

6) David Price (BOS)

7) Masahiro Tanaka (NYY)

8) Dallas Keuchel (HOU)

Tier Four

9) Carlos Rodon (CHW)

No one on this slate threatens Madison Bumgarner (SF) as the top starting pitcher, and in what looks like an extremely high floor matchup (extremely low implied run total for the Rockies getting a severely negative park shift, most skilled pitcher on the slate, highest win probability), our current lean is to build around Bumgarner in cash games.

We have a tough time paying up for Carlos Carrasco (CLE) in cash games as he’s priced similarly to Bumgarner and doesn’t hold the same high floor. Purely from a ceiling standpoint, he matches and possibly even surpasses Bumgarner however, so he’s someone to pivot to in tournaments. In cash games, the tier two starting pitcher that serves as the best value is Kenta Maeda (LAD), who has been a little bit lucky (2.82 ERA but 3.92 xFIP). However, we’ve been pleasantly surprised with the 23.9 K percentage (solidifies DFS value) and still expect a sub 3.50 ERA ROS. The Orioles swing and miss quite a bit and posses a low implied run total on the road in an NL park without the DH.

Gio Gonzalez (WAS) heads up our third tier of starting pitchers. He’s struggled massively the last couple of months and can’t seem to get through a start without giving up three or more runs. As a result we view him as pretty risky in cash, but the price, decent K rate, and Vegas line do make him cash viable on DraftKings. While the rest of our cash game options don’t extend much past our top four ranked pitchers except for specific price point plays, the position is pretty deep tonight, with our top 10 pitchers all tournament viable, including Wei-Yin Chen (MIA) (very cheap on DraftKings) who would be leading a fifth tier of starting pitchers if we extended the rankings that deep.

Catcher Rankings

1) Welington Castillo (ARI)

2) Buster Posey (SF)

3) Russell Martin (TOR)

4) Jonathan Lucroy (MIL)

5) Salvador Perez (KC)

On FanDuel, the catcher position is pretty straightforward as Welington Castillo (ARI) is by far the highest ranked value in our model, given a low price tag, expected cleanup spot, and home matchup against a bad LHP (allowed a .366 wOBA and .148 ISO to RHBs since 2014). Over on DraftKings, Castillo Is appropriately priced and then you have a handful of mostly neutral values in the $3,000 range. It’s mostly personal preference, leaving us liking Russell Martin (TOR) (force Toronto exposure against Chris Young) or Salvador Perez (KC) (the cheapest of the group).

First Base Rankings

1) Paul Goldschmidt (ARI)

2) David Ortiz (BOS)

3) Edwin Encarnacion (TOR)

4) Freddie Freeman (ATL)

5) Eric Hosmer (KC)

It’s a somewhat binary decision at first base as we’d like to either pay way up for Paul Goldschmidt (ARI) (top ranked hitter overall, crushes LHP and has a good home matchup against Friedrich) or way down for Ryan Howard (PHI) (lineup spot pending; Foltynewicz has allowed a .417 wOBA and .293 ISO to LHBs since 2014). The former route gives you are favorite overall hitting option while the latter route may allow you to force in some Blue Jays and/or an expensive outfielder. In tournaments, it’s much trickier as both David Ortiz (BOS) and Edwin Encarnacion (TOR) have mammoth power upside against two extremely fly ball risky pitchers. Kendrys Morales (KC) has been extremely hot (+1.4 delta in our well-hit tool is one of the highest we’ve had over 40-plus plate appearances) so he can definitely be used in tournaments and is even cash viable on FanDuel.

Second Base Rankings

1) Jose Altuve (HOU)

2) Jean Segura (ARI)

3) Devon Travis (TOR)

4) Matt Carpenter (STL)

5) Jed Lowrie (OAK)

While Jose Altuve (HOU) is a complete stud and still very underpriced on FanDuel, in general this is a good position to grab value. Across the industry, Devon Travis (TOR) (gives you access to the huge power upside and highest implied run total of the Jays), Jed Lowrie (OAK) (always in a good lineup spot and Tommy Milone is trash), and Starlin Castro (NYY) (could see him hit second against LHP and US Cellular Field is a very good hitter’s park, especially for right handed power).

Shortstop Rankings

1) Carlos Correa (HOU)

2) Xander Bogaerts (BOS)

3) Eduardo Nunez (MIN)

4) Manny Machado (BAL) (where eligible)

5) Francisco Lindor (CLE)

We’re more prone to pay up at this middle infield position, especially since paying up really doesn’t involve an exorbitant price tag on either site. Where our top two shortstops are ranked similarly, we prefer Carlos Correa‘s (HOU) overall skill set and neutral well-hit rating. On FanDuel, though, Xander Bogaerts (BOS) is priced meaningfully cheaper. Despite a negative well-hit rating delta over the last two weeks, he’s tough to dismiss on a Boston team with such a high implied team total at home against AJ Griffin (4.46 xFIP, 35.1 hard hit rate). With a good lineup spot, Freddy Galvis (PHI) pops as a salary cap relief play. That may make it easier to pay up for Goldschmidt and Bumgarner without abandoning hope for some complementary Blue Jays exposure elsewhere. On FanDuel specifically, Marcus Semien (OAK) provides plenty of power upside (if hitting second) and gives you a quality cash game option at a mid-low price tag.

Third Base Rankings

1) Josh Donaldson (TOR)

2) Danny Valencia (OAK)

3) Miguel Sano (MIN) (where eligible)

4) Alex Rodriguez (NYY)

5) Maikel Franco (PHI)

Our value rankings according to our beta hitter model prefer going the mid-tier route with one of Danny Valencia (OAK) (.388 wOBA, .194 ISO against LHP since 2014) or Alex Rodriguez (NYY) (good price and good all-around context). However, we do think if you find plus cheap values at other positions, it’s justifiable to spend up for our top third baseman, Josh Donaldson (TOR) given a 5.5 implied run total for the Jays and a matchup against Chris Young, which is very Fantasy friendly (allowing an absurd 3.43 HR/9 thanks to a 28.0 GB rate combined with a 29.4 hard minus soft hit rate).

Outfield Rankings

1) Bryce Harper (WAS)

2) Mookie Betts (BOS)

3) Mike Trout (LAA)

4) Odubel Herrera (PHI)

5) Ezequiel Carrera (TOR)

6) Yoenis Cespedes (NYM)

7) Miguel Sano (MIN)

8) Gregory Polanco (PIT)

9) Andrew McCutchen (PIT)

10) Nelson Cruz (SEA)

11) Ryan Braun (MIL)

12) Cody Asche (PHI) (if hitting third)

13) George Springer (HOU)

14) Coco Crisp (OAK)

15) Michael Saunders (TOR)

Bryce Harper (WAS) rates really well in our hitter model, which is unsurprising given the matchup against Zach Davies (.317 wOBA, .163 ISO allowed to LHBs). He’s definitely cash viable, but we will say the negative delta in our well-hit tool combined with other studs on teams in better spots doesn’t leave him at the top of our priority list of high priced expenditures. And if you don’t pay all the way up for Harper, there are plenty of solid mid-tier value plays to utilize. Ezequiel Carrera (TOR) isn’t exactly the guy to take advantage of Chris Young‘s weaknesses but is the most affordable way to get Blue Jays exposure. Miguel Sano (MIN) remains pretty ridiculously underpriced on FanDuel, and RHBs have thus far ripped Sean Manaea to shreds (.379 wOBA, .202 ISO). Cody Asche (PHI) has been hitting third recently for the Phillies, and that lineup spot would make him a superb industry wide value on a day where they actually have a strong implied run total (approaching 5). Another lineup spot dependent guy is Brandon Drury (ARI) (good power numbers are somewhat supported by 18.1 hard minus soft hit rate), who could hit second at home with the platoon edge. In particular, he’s min priced on FanDuel. Those are just some of our favorite options, but if you check out our beta hitter model, you’ll see even more plus values at that mid-tier price point and some at the mid-high price point as well (Odubel Herrera (PHI), Yoenis Cespedes (NYM), Andrew McCutchen (PIT), Alex Gordon (KC)), which helps create the needed flexibility to pay up for Bumgarner and one offensive stud without truly punting anywhere.

Stack Rankings

Tier One

1) Toronto Blue Jays

2) Boston Red Sox

3) Arizona Diamondbacks

Tier Two

4) Oakland Athletics

5) St. Louis Cardinals

6) Minnesota Twins

7) Philadelphia Phillies

8) Washington Nationals

9) Tampa Bay Rays

It’d be nice if possible to pick out at least one bat from each of the tier one stacks in cash games, even if it’s not a premiere bat. We are likely to break ties on what premiere bat to pay up for by choosing an option on one of those three teams, all of whom are fully stackable in tournament formats.

The tier two stacks are where you want to full or mini-stack in tournaments if looking for lower ownership. In particular, we like the Oakland Athletics (lots of power upside that may get overlooked due to park), St. Louis Cardinals (tough to determine what to do with them in cash games as Steven Brault has been really good in MiLB but does not project to pitch deep and is making his MLB debut, but that uncertainty also leads to upside for a deep offense), and Philadelphia Phillies (rare day we seem them with a plus team total, value on the stack is great due to pricing, plenty of LHBs to take advantage of Foltynewicz’s issues).

Additional Tournament Stack

-Cleveland Indians (Projection systems remain optimistic on Anibal Sanchez, which is why our ratings for the Cleveland hitters are lukewarm. However, if we take Sanchez’s current line at face value, you’re looking at a 5.24 xFIP pitcher with a 14.5 hard minus soft hit rate)

MLB Daily Analysis

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