SportGrid Radio SportsGrid
MLB Daily Analysis

6/9 MLB DFS: Make your Mark in Coors Field

6/9 MLB DFS: Make your Mark in Coors Field
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Daily Fantasy Rundown – June 9th MLB DFS Picks and Analysis

Welcome to Tuesday’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: No big concerns tonight. A rare, quiet night weather-wise! However, something may pop up in NYC, PIT, ATL, COL and even in California so we’ll keep an eye on those games.

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:

Yadier Molina (STL) – You know the drill by now. We’ve got a total of 10 in Coors Field. The only other game that really comes close is the Marlins-Jays game (total of 9), and 10 of 15 games in action tonight have a total of 7.5 or lower. I know it may be annoying to see the Coors Field names flooding the Rundown once again but they’ll be key to cash games tonight. You’ll particularly want exposure to the Cardinals RHBs against de la Rosa (massive park shift and de la Rosa has allowed a .341 wOBA to RHBs since 2012). Molina has a great .376 wOBA and .190 ISO against LHP since 2012. There’s no doubt he’s in a decline phase now (ISOs have dropped three consecutive years), but with those splits and continued strong BA skills (high contact and LD rates) he’s a good option tonight. It’s pretty easy to stack Cardinals RHBs tonight and not have it cost you the day’s clear cut top pitcher (Corey Kluber).

Rockies catchers – I’m a bit less emphatic about forcing Rockies players into lineups tonight, but there are a few spots where it’s not too difficult to do: paying up for Tulowitzki at SS, Blackmon/CarGo for mediocre prices in the OF, Ben Paulsen as a cheap 1B and the catcher position. Opposing pitcher Michael Wacha will have the platoon edge on the Rockie catcher eligible tri of Hundley/McKenry/Rosario, but Wacha is really struggling to miss bats this season (6.01 K/9), and I’m not sure his reliance on inducing weak contact will serve him well in Coors Field. I’d let price and lineup spot dictate which Colorado catcher to focus on.

Stephen Vogt (OAK) – While the catcher position allows fairly cost effective access to Coors Field, you aren’t sacrificing a ton of upside if you diversify off that game here and pivot to a similarly priced option. If going that route, I’d suggest Stephen Vogt. Opposing pitcher Nick Martinez has been one of the luckiest pitchers in all of baseball this season. He has a 2.89 ERA despite a 4.22 FP and 4.79 xFIP. Martinez allows more hard contact and less soft contact that the average qualified starting pitcher, so there’s not much reason to expect his fortunate HR/FB rate and LOB% (way too high for someone of his K rate) to continue to beat league averages. Even with Martinez’s hot start, he’s allowed a .343 wOBA and 1.13 HR/9 to LHBs for his career. Meanwhile, Vogt is having a phenomenal season. His .391 wOBA is supported by an increase in power numbers (.254) and plate discipline (.78 EYE). Vogt will likely cool off somewhat but it’s clear he’s a better offensive player than we had him pegged as coming into the year.

Tournament Play:

Matt Wieters (BAL) – I’m hesitant to use Wieters in cash games since opposing pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez is a very good prospect who has been dominant through his first two start. Still, it’s tough not to see the upside Wieters carries. He’s pretty fairly priced and has absolutely murdered LHP since 2012: .297/.353/.530 triple slash. Target his power upside in tournaments where you’ll likely get low ownership.

Additional catcher notes: Evan Gattis (HOU) still has catcher eligibility on FanDuel. Due to opportunity cost, he’s a better tournament play than cash game but he’s got big time power upside against a volatile LHP in one of the league’s most favorable parks for right-handed power. Russell Martin (TOR) won’t have the platoon edge but should be in the middle of a powerful Jays offense who is at home and carries the second highest implied run total as they face off against the declining Dan Haren. Like Vogt, he’s a nice alternative to the Coors Field options in cash games at a similar price. Yan Gomes (CLE) (cold and poor lineup spot but has the platoon edge and is extremely cheap) and Brian McCann (NYY) (price is down on DK due to very difficult matchup but still has decent HR upside at home) are two tournament only options.

First Base

Top Play:

Joey Votto (CIN) – Aaron Harang, like Nick Martinez, is a pitcher who’s outperforming his current peripherals who we expect to fall off rather dramatically moving forward. Harang has always been fly ball oriented, but this season he has his lowest GB rate (33.9) since his rookie season way back in 2002. That’s very likely to get him into trouble in Great American Ballpark (second best venue for HRs). Votto ranks just inside out top 10 overall options and his elite overall profile (great EYE, consistently makes very hard contact) make him a very safe choice. The complexion of the night though makes Votto more of a luxury than a necessity.

Value Plays:

Mark Reynolds (STL) – Reynolds reminds me a lot of Justin Bour on Sunday. While that result didn’t turn out the way we wanted, the process was sound. Basically, Reynolds is an incredibly high upside option (top 15 overall hitter in our model, top five home run score) that gives you access to Coors Field but won’t cost you a pretty penny. He sits at just $2,800 on FanDuel and is particularly valuable at $3,100 on DraftKings, where he holds first and third base eligibility. Reynolds will have the platoon edge tonight against Jorge de la Rosa who has allowed a .341 wOBA to RHBs since 2012 and is allowing a ton of hard hit contact this year (35.7 hard hit rate). With Matt Holliday hurt, it’s likely Reynolds moves up a spot in the order.

Ben Paulsen (COL) – I prefer Reynolds to Paulsen where similarly priced but if you have the ability to play the pair together, then you’ll get a lot of upside in Coors Field but at a low cost. Paulsen will have the platoon edge on Wacha and has really impressed in short MLB career (.419 wOBA, .280 ISO in 133 PAs). That sample size is obviously unreliable but adds a little bit of confidence to a decent ZiPS projection against RHP: .323 wOBA and .178 ISO. Again, really small sample size, but Paulsen has begun 2015 with solid plate discipline and making hard contact.

Additional first base notes: Edwin Encarnacion (TOR) is right in line with Joey Votto in our model and has greater HR upside. He’s expected to return to the lineup today but a shoulder injury has me a little bit tentative. He’s more playable in cash than Votto due to price. If Encarnacion is unable to return, Justin Smoak (TOR) would join Reynolds and Paulsen as an incredibly cheap way to get access to the highest expected scoring offenses of the day. It’s actually possible to play all three on DraftKings. David Ortiz (BOS) hasn’t been able to hit fastballs and has some ugly peripherals, but man the discount makes him a secondary option in a strong matchup, especially on FanDuel. Chris Carter (HOU) (great park, platoon edge, top HR score in model) and Pedro Alvarez (PIT) (decent price point and nice power upside against a young RHP making his MLB debut) are two options for tournaments.

Second Base

Top Play:

Jose Altuve (HOU) – Altuve isn’t just a speed upside play, particularly in matchups against southpaws as he has a 144 wRC+ against them for his career (189 and 168 past two season). The speed is obviously nice, though and against a wild pitcher like Carlos Rodon (5.71 BB/9), there’s a good chance Altuve finds himself on first base a couple of times tonight with a chance to steal. He’s too expensive for cash games on DraftKings (they price for splits), but on FanDuel his price has fallen rather significantly over the past few weeks and it’s possible to squeeze him in.

Next in line: Kolten Wong (STL) (L/L matchup isn’t ideal but if he continues to lead off he needs to be considered in all formats at a cheaper price than Altuve).

Value Play:

Neil Walker (PIT) – Second base isn’t a bad spot to diversify off of Coors Field as Wong, as good of an option as he is, isn’t cheap anywhere. Walker is. He’s having a down year (.319 wOBA) as a result of a drop off in plate discipline. However, his low power numbers should improve moving forward both based on his history and his batted ball peripherals. Walker has a hard hit rate and soft hit rate that are both better than his career marks. Not only is he making hard contact, it’s hard aerial contact as his 36.1 GB rate the his lowest of his career. He’ll start today’s game hitting from the left side, where he’s always carried more power (.180 ISO compared to .080 from the right side). For Milwaukee, RHP Taylor Jungmann is making his MLB debut. It’s an interesting call up as Jungmann had a 6.37 ERA at AAA (3.88 FIP). He’s had decent K and HR rates but is very wild. There’s definite blow up potential here.

Cheap Play:

Jeff Baker (MIA) – Due to pinch hit risk, I’d side with Walker over Baker where similarly priced (FanDuel), but on DraftKings Baker is so much cheaper than the other viable second base options that he becomes a primary target. Baker has hit cleanup for the Marlins the last two games and gets a huge park shift moving from Miami (20th best park for right-handed hitters) to Toronto (third). Baker has long been a lefty hitting specialist and owns a career .374 wOBA and .215 ISO against southpaws. Today he’ll square off against Mark Buehrle, who we really like to pick on this year. Buehrle has always struggled to miss bats, but he’s taking that to the extreme this year with a minuscule 10.6 K percentage. I think the added problems there are a result of Buehrle’s steady velocity decline since 2010: 86.0/85.6/85.0/84.2/83.9/83.3. It’s also impacted one of Buehrle’s most important skills: limiting hard contact. Buehrle’s hard hit rate for his career is an impressive 25.5 percent, but it now sits at 37.0, which is terrible.

Additional second base notes: Ben Zobrist (OAK) has a quality lineup spot and favorable matchup against Nick Martinez; he’s also cash viable. Other secondary cash options are Howie Kendrick (LAD) (platoon edge against Robbie Ray) and DJ LeMahieu (COL) (hitting second in Coors).


Top Pay:

Troy Tulowitzki (COL) – Tulowitzki is clearly back to form. Whether it was a mechanical or mental issue, he seems to have solved it. Over his last nine games he has more home runs (five) and as many walks (four) as he had in his previous 42 games. He’s the clear cut top shortstop, and I’m making an active effort to pay up for him in my cash games on DraftKings, where it’s pretty easy to get cheap Coors Field exposure elsewhere and still have room for Tulowitzki and Kluber.

Next in line:

Jhonny Peralta (STL) – Peralta has the platoon edge in Coors with a great lineup spot. I’d rather have Tulowitzki, but on a site like FanDuel, the $500 savings that Peralta provides goes a long way and he’s certainly cash viable across the industry.

Additional shortstop notes: Jose Reyes (TOR) is a good tournament option, hitting from his better side and leading off for a Jays team in a great spot. I’d have a tough time paying up for him in cash games, though, when it’s just a few bucks more for Tulo/Peralta. Some potential cheap options depending on lineup spots are Jonathan Villar (HOU), Jimmy Rollins (LAD) and Pete Kozma (STL) (DK specific punt). If none are in favorable lineup spots, figure out a way to pay up for Tulo/Peralta.

Third Base

Top Plays: Nolan Arenado (COL) and Matt Carpenter (STL) are pretty even as far as top plays go at third base. Due to environment they are viable in all formats, but their prices are really high, leading me to go elsewhere in cash games. On DraftKings, some cheap first basemen such as Mark Reynolds and Pedro Alvarez have third base eligibility. On both FanDuel and DraftKings you can also save money with the written up options below.

Cheap Plays:

Mike Moustakas (KC) – As I mentioned in a previous Rundown recently, I’m a bit torn on Moustakas. He’s made BA strides thanks to a reduced K rate and a better opposite field approach. However, his BABIP is inflated and the ISO is stagnant. Ultimately, he’s a good cheap option hitting second for an underrated Royals offense that will face RHP Trevor May (.349 wOBA allowed to RHBs for his career).

Pablo Sandoval (BOS) – Sandoval has been absolutely putrid offensively. Simply based on park shift, you’d expect his numbers to have taken a step forward from last year, making me question his health. Normally, I’d simply avoid, but the extreme discount he’s currently at ($2,200 FD, $3,300 DK) may make him a worthwhile risk, even in cash games. I mean the problems are definitely real and not just bad luck (51.0 GB rate, horrendous hard minus soft hit rate), but he’s hitting sixth for a good offense in a good park (Camden Yards) against a subpar pitcher (Miguel Gonzalez has a career 4.60 FIP and 4.37 xFIP).

Additional third base notes: Martin Prado (MIA) is someone I’d jump all over if similarly priced to Sandoval but at a more expensive price point I’m leaning towards giving Moustakas/Sandoval the edge in cash games. Prado has a great lineup spot for an offense that should be targeted tonight and holds the platoon edge on Buehrle. Josh Donaldson (TOR) (having an absurd power season, Dan Haren is HR prone), Todd Frazier (CIN) (we do not like Aaron Harang) and Kris Bryant (CHC) (Anibal Sanchez is solid but has oddly become very fly ball oriented this season) are a trio of expensive outfielders that come with huge upside and likely low ownerships due to opportunity cost.


Top Play:

Giancarlo Stanton (MIA) – Despite all this Coors Field talk, the number one overall hitter in our model is Stanton. Stanton gets a massive park shift in his favor and has absurd power and overall numbers against LHP for his career (163 wRC+, .314 ISO). Given Mark Buehrle’s struggles, I’d look to get exposure to Stanton somewhere tonight. It’s obviously easier said than done and probably not possible in cash games on FanDuel, but it actually isn’t too difficult on DraftKings, particularly if some of the cheap options discussed end up in the lineup spots we hope.

Value Plays:

Charlie Blackmon/Carlos Gonzalez (COL) – Both of these Colorado outfielders are going to have the platoon edge on Wacha at home and actually have fairly reasonable pricing across the industry. The biggest issue here is opportunity cost as the Cardinals offense is in a bit of a better spot (weaker opposing starting pitcher, lower prices, road team so guaranteed a ninth inning). As a result, in cash games I’ll probably just use one of these outfielders (preference is for Blackmon as current peripherals are a bit sharper and has stolen base upside).

Randal Grichuk (STL) – Grichuk, like Reynolds, gives you really cheap access to Coors Field with a player who has power upside and the platoon edge. Also like Reynolds, Grichuk likely will benefit from sliding up in the order with Matt Holliday injured. Grichuk is a top 20 hitting option in our model tonight, and he’s more than just a product of Coors Field (ZiPS projected .181 ISO against LHP). I’d consider him a core cash game option this evening. In fact, with Holliday hurt Peter Bourjos (STL) will likely draw the start. At $2,800 on FanDuel and $3,500 on DraftKings, he’s another high upside option with the platoon edge who gives you very cheap access to Coors Field. Due to environment and pricing, I’ll focus on getting two to three of the Cardinals cheap trio of RHBs: Reynolds, Grichuk and Bourjos. Jason Heyward (STL) won’t have the platoon edge and hasn’t been hitting up in the order, but he’s still viable in cash due to environment. He’s mush more usable on FanDuel (just a bit more expensive than Grichuk/Bourjos) than he is on DraftKings (around 33 percent more expensive).

Jay Bruce (CIN) – Bruce has a very encouraging overall profile. His EYE is a career best .58 (career mark is .39), and the high GB rate that plagued his power last year has dropped from 45.2 percent to 35.3 percent, the lowest of his career. On top of all that, his hard hit rate and soft hit rates are both better than his career averages. In other words, Bruce currently has improved his plate discipline, loft and quality of contact. That’s pretty good for a guy with a career .373 wOBA and .260 ISO at home against RHP. There’s a ton of upside here against Aaron Harang. As much as we are emphasizing Coors Field, if you can grab Bruce and/or Reddick (below) at a discount to the Colorado outfielders that’s viable in all formats.

Josh Reddick (OAK) – Reddick is similar to teammate Stephen Vogt. It’s obviously the same matchup and Reddick is also displaying some really gaudy peripherals that have us upping the baseline he was pegged at in the preseason. The biggest improvement for Reddick has been in his plate discipline. After walking 8.2 percent of the time and striking out 19 percent of the time for his career, he’s currently walking 10.8 percent of the time and striking out just 10.3 percent of the time. That means two things. First and foremost, he’s putting the ball in play more often, which means more hits, more HRs, etc., simply due to volume. Secondly, the elite batting EYE is a good indication Reddick is swinging at better pitches, which may be why we’re seeing the ISO 17 points above his career mark. Teammate Billy Burns (OAK) has great stolen base upside and is a tournament option.

Tournament Play:

Rajai Davis (DET) – At first glance, a matchup against Jon Lester on a day with so many other better offensive situations doesn’t really stick out. However, Davis is one of the best base stealers in the league, while Jon Lester is historically one of the worst pitchers at holding runners on, something Ricky Sanders took a look at for us. It’s also important to point out that Davis has some legitimate on base skills against LHP, posting a career .354 wOBA against southpaws with the three year marker even higher (.373). If Davis can get on a couple of times against Lester, two to three stolen bases are not out of the question.

Additional outfield notes: George Springer‘s (HOU) elite HR/SB upside in a great park and with the platoon edge make him a secondary target in cash games and someone you want exposure to if multi-entering tournaments. Other secondary cash game options include Gregory Polanco (PIT), Alex Gordon (KC) and Kole Calhoun (LAA). Jose Bautista (TOR) and Mike Trout (LAA) have a ton of upside, but I’d emphasize Stanton and Coors Field over them in cash games. Other strong tournament options in the outfield Joc Pederson (LAD), Hanley Ramirez (BOS) and Billy Hamilton (CIN). The Padres outfield is very affordable and makes for a decent tournament mini-stack.

Starting Pitcher

Rankings (price not considered):

Tier One

1) Corey Kluber (CLE)

Tier Two

2a) Sonny Gray (OAK)

2b) Francisco Liriano (PIT)

2c) Max Scherzer (WAS)

Tier Three

5) James Shields (SD)

6) Masahiro Tanaka (NYY)

7) Noah Syndergaard (NYM)

8) Dallas Keuchel (CHW)

9) Carlos Rodon (CHW)

Tier Four

10) Anibal Sanchez (DET)

11) Matt Shoemaker (LAA)

12) Mike Foltynewicz (ATL)

13) Eduardo Rodriguez (BOS)

Top Play:

Corey Kluber (CLE) – Despite several very attractive pitching options on the docket, Kluber rates as the clear cut top play in our model. Ignore the ERA (3.61) as Kluber has actually improved from last season, posting a ridiculous 15.0 SwStr rate (12.0 last season), which has led to 30.6 K percentage and very low expected ERAs (2.23 FIP, 2.37 xFIP). As Kluber’s BABIP and LOB% normalize moving forward, the ERA will come down. Aside from elite K upside and run prevention skills, Kluber’s ability to pitch deep into games bolsters his value. He’s averaged right around seven innings pitched over the past two seasons. Of course, Kluber’s opponent aids his value as well tonight. The Mariners rank 22nd in wRC+ against RHP and have the third highest K rate against it. Even with some attractive expensive hitters on the board tonight, I suggest doing what you can to fit Kluber into your cash game lineups.

Value Plays:

Francisco Liriano (PIT) – The gap is wide enough between Kluber and Liriano where I strongly advise trying to pay up for Kluber. However, if you want to anchor your cash teams with a tier two starting pitcher, Liriano is the logical choice based on price. Gray, Liriano and Scherzer all rank very closely in our model but Liriano is the cheapest on most sites around the industry. It’s not a risk free start as Milwaukee does have some threatening RHBs and Liriano will have an unfavorable umpire. However, he’s listed as a -220 favorite (largest on the day) in a game with a low run total (7.5). Liriano will benefit from being at home in pitcher friendly PNC Park. Liriano, aside from a disaster start against Minnesota, has pitched really well this season. He currently has a career high 19.94 K/9 and continues to complement that with a solid GB rate (50.6 percent). His control is still below average but definitely improve from last season (BB/9 down from 4.49 to 3.38), which makes a big difference. Finally, I should point out that Liriano is allowing more soft hit contact than hard hit contact, which is very beneficial and rare among qualified starters.

Carlos Rodon (CHW) – Rodon is terrifying to throw in cash games as his wildness (5.71 BB/9) makes him prone to a short disaster start any time out. So be forewarned this is a very risky option, especially at home in US Cellular Field against an offense with some pop. However, our emphasis on Coors Field and Corey Kluber necessitates you take some calculated risks elsewhere in your lineups. On two starting pitcher sites such as DraftKings where Rodon is very, very cheap, he’s the calculated risk. I’ve talked about the downside but that’s mitigated a little bit by the fact that strikeouts are king in Daily Fantasy. They’re worth a lot of points and are one of the most predictable stats start to start. Rodon is currently striking out a touch more than a batter an inning with projections systems actually projecting that to increase moving forward. He faces an Astros team with the highest K percentage (25) in the league against LHP. Our model gives Rodon a projected K percentage tonight just over 32 percent, which actually slightly edges out elite starting pitchers Kluber and Scherzer. It will be a harrowing experience watching Rodon tonight, but bet on the Ks and use the cap room to get Kluber and Coors Field exposure on multi-SP sites. NOTE: Depending on lineups, Rodon may become an unnecessary risk. If guys like Baker/Smoak/Paulsen end up in the right lineup spots, my strategy on DK will probably shift off of Rodon and to paying up for a second pitcher.

Tournament Play:

Masahiro Tanaka (NYY) – For all the concern around Tanaka (and given his health it makes sense), he’s been pretty brilliant this season, striking out 29.6 percent of batters faced over six starts and posting a 3.02 xFIP. In his first start back from the DL on the third of the month, Tanaka dominated the Mariners. It was a weak opponent in a favorable park, but the process was really impressive (9 K, 0 BB, 57.1 GB rate). The best part about the start was undoubtedly Tanaka’s velocity. He sat at 92.9 mph on his fastball. He was under 91 mph in his four starts prior to the DL stint and only averaged 91.2 last season. His price unfortunately isn’t down anywhere, making opportunity cost a bit too high for me in cash games. However, with his performance history, K upside and encouraging velocity last start, there is number one SP upside on the night here and it’s going to come attached with what I feel will be very low ownership due to a combination of opportunity cost, home park, risk perception and opposing pitcher (Scherzer).

Additional starting pitcher notes: Sonny Gray (OAK) is the third largest favorite on the day as the Athletics are at home against a mediocre Rangers offense and subpar starting pitcher in Nick Martinez. Gray has been phenomenal at inducing weak contact this year, which along with improved SwStr and K rates has made him a reliable Fantasy option start to start. Max Schzerzer (WAS) obviously has elite talent but seems like an unnecessary spend today. He’s in a tough environment (Yankee Stadium), against a heavily left-handed AL team and the only top two tier option that is an underdog. James Shields (SD) strikeout numbers have been incredible, but his HR issues, price and an Atlanta team that doesn’t strike out a lot all push him towards tournament status only. Noah Syndergaard (NYM) is a viable second starting pitcher in cash games. On DraftKings, if you want to avoid Rodon’s risk and can’t pay up for Liriano as a second starting pitcher, Syndergaard is your guy. The Giants offense is mediocre and it’s a good pitcher’s park for Thor (Citi Field). Environment and lower K upside keeps Dallas Keuchel (HOU) pushed down our rankings a bit but he’s got strong innings pitched upside and his run prevention is strong due to the absurd amount of weak contact he induces. I’d be fine using him in cash games if he fits, despite not having a sexy ranking. Tier four is flooded with upside pitchers worth using in tournaments that either have health/skills concerns (Sanchez, Shoemaker) or are in a dangerous environment (Rodriguez). Outside of our ranked pitchers, Chris Heston (SF) is worth a look on DraftKings. He’s been really hit or miss with five starts of five ER or more and then one ER or less in the other six starts. He’ll take on a Mets team that is 25th in wRC+ against RHP with the 12th highest K percentage. Heston is cash game viable as an alternative to Rodon.

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) St. Louis Cardinals

2) Toronto Blue Jays

3) Colorado Rockies

4) Miami Marlins

5) Cincinnati Reds

6) Oakland Athletics

The Blue Jays stack fits the tournament stack bill more than the cash game mini stacks. I don’t love the individual values on a lot of their players (at least relative to alternative options), which means I won’t have much exposure in cash games. However, this team has scored at least six runs in six straight games, are flooded with power upside, are at home and face Dan Haren who has seen both his K and GB rates decline along with his velocity.

The other top stacks all had multiple players written up throughout the course of the content. It’s best to mini-stack at least three Cardinals in cash games and supplement them with Rockies/Marlins/Reds/Athletics.

Contrarian/Secondary Stacks:

1) Houston Astros

2) Boston Red Sox

3) Pittsburgh Pirates

4) Los Angeles Dodgers

Surprise, surprise, the Astros stack makes an appearance. They are flooded with power upside (especially versus LHP) and stolen base upside. Their ceiling is very high given the park, a very volatile opposing pitcher and a bad bullpen.

The Red Sox offense have been getting disappointing performances from multiple starters, making them a risky offense to have much exposure to in cash games. However, mini-stacking them in tournaments gives you likely low ownership to a high upside offense at very low prices (think Ortiz, Sandoval), which will allow you to complement this mini stack with almost anyone else you want.

The Pirates home park always keeps them down a bit in our stack rankings, but a matchup against an MLB pitcher making his debut despite having a rather tough time at AAA (4.40 BB/9, 6.37 ERA) should allow this team to chip away at value all throughout the lineup.

Robbie Ray‘s first two starts were really good but the BB rate (.82 per nine) is likely unsustainable given the 5.83 BB/9 he posted at AAA prior to getting called up. That type of BB rate at the MLB level could spell serious trouble, especially against a talented lineup like the Dodgers.

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.

BOS at BLT 7:05: Dry. Temps in the low 80s falling into the upper 70s. Air density is an 8 becoming a 7. Wind west-northwest 3-6 mph becoming nearly calm. The wind blows out to right. The wind is a 6 becoming a 5.

WSH at NYY 7:05: A 10-20% chance of a thunderstorm to begin the game. Not concerned at all about a cancellation. Temps in the mid 70s falling to near 70. Air density is a 7. Wind west-northwest 3-6 mph becoming nearly calm. The wind blows out to right. The wind is a 6 becoming a 5.

MIL at PIT 7:05: A 10-20% chance of a thunderstorm to begin the game. Not concerned at all about a cancellation. Temps in the low to mid 70s falling to near 70. Air density is a 7. Wind west-northwest 3-6 mph which blows out to left-center. The wind is a 6.

MIA at TOR 7:07: Retractable roof. Dry. Temps in the low to mid 60s. Air density is a 6. Wind west 7-14 mph which blows from left to right. The wind is a 5.

CHC at DET 7:08: Dry. Temps in the mid 70s falling to near 70. Air density is a 7. Wind southwest 4-8 mph which blows from right to left. The wind is a 5.

SEA at CLE 7:10: Dry. Temps in the low 70s falling into the upper 60s. Air density is a 7 becoming a 6. Wind west 4-8 mph becoming south 4-8 mph. The wind blows left to right first and then out to center. The wind is a 5 becoming a 6.

SD at ATL 7:10: A 20% chance of a thunderstorm around in the beginning of the game. Not concerned at all about a cancellation. Temps near 80 falling into the low to mid 70s. Air density is an 8 becoming a 7. Wind southwest 5-10 mph which blows out to center. The wind is a 6.

PHL at CIN 7:10: Dry. Temps near 80 falling to near 70. Air density is a 7. Wind light and variable. The wind is a 5.

SF at NYM 7:10: A 10-20% chance of a thunderstorm to begin the game. Not concerned at all about a cancellation. Temps in the mid 70s falling to near 70. Air density is a 7. Wind west-northwest 3-6 mph becoming nearly calm. The wind blows out to right. The wind is a 6 becoming a 5.

LAA at TB 7:10: Dome.

HOU at CHW 8:10: Dry. Temps in the low 80s falling into the mid 70s. Air density is an 8 becoming a 7. Wind southwest 8-16 mph which blows from right to left. The wind is a 5.

KC at MIN 8:10: Dry. Temps in the upper 80s falling to near 80. Air density is an 8. Wind southwest 7-14 mph which blows out to left. The wind is a 6.

STL at COL 8:40: A 20% chance of a thunderstorm around. No threat for a cancellation but there is a 20% chance of a delay. Temps in the low to mid 80s falling into the low 70s. Air density is a 10. Wind southeast 7-14 mph which blows out to left. The wind is a 6.

TEX at OAK 10:05: A 10% chance of a shower around. Do not see a big deal. Temps in the upper 60s falling into the low to mid 60s. Air density is a 6 or a 7. Wind northwest 9-18 mph lessening to 7-14 mph which blows from left to right. The wind is a 5.

AZ at LAD 10:10: A 10-20% chance of a shower or thunderstorm early in the game. Not a big deal. Temps near 70 falling into the mid 60s. Air density is a 7. Wind west-southwest 9-18 mph lessening to 7-14 mph which blows out to right. The wind is a 7 becoming a 6.

MLB Daily Analysis