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September 26 MLB DFS: Hear us Roark
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September 26 MLB DFS  Show Outline: 

jose1602:12 Starting Pitchers
10:05 Catchers
12:47 First Base
15:44 Second Base
18:42 Shortstops
20:11 Third Base
21:46 Outfield
25:47 Cash Game Roster Construction and Stacks

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September 26 MLB DFS PRO TIP

Starting Pitcher Rankings

Tier One

1) Corey Kluber (CLE)

Tier Two

2) Kyle Hendricks (CHC)

3) Tanner Roark (WAS)

4) J.A. Happ (TOR)

5) Jaime Garcia (STL)

Tier Three

6) Drew Smyly (TB)

7) Hisashi Iwakuma (SEA)

8) Sean Manaea (OAK)

Monday’s slate brings Corey Kluber (CLE) at the top of the rankings followed by a deep second tier led by Kyle Hendricks (CHC). With price tags elevated on both starters and their teams playing for very little down the stretch, it’s easier to play price points on starting pitching in order to load up on offense. On both sites, there is a cheap option in the second tier that unlocks plenty of room for offense. On FanDuel, Tanner Roark (WAS) gets a Diamondbacks offense that ranks 26th in wRC+ against RHP and has the league’s seventh highest K Rate against RHP (22.4 percent). The lineup is RH dominant and Tanner Roark has dominated RHBs since 2015, limiting them to a .290 wOBA and .120 ISO with a solid 19.5 K Rate. The strikeout heavy lineup helps inflate Roark’s projected K Rate to nearly 24 percent. Roark has the second lowest implied team total (3.6 runs) and is the heaviest favorite on the slate (-190). On DraftKings, Jaime Garcia (STL) is just $6,800 after pitching in relief the last few outings. He got an extended relief outing in Colorado and now faces a Reds’ offense that ranks 27th in wRC+ against LHP with the eighth highest K Rate against LHP. Garcia has an implied run total of 3.8 runs against and is a strong -190 favorite as well. Both the Diamondbacks and the Reds are getting stark park downgrades and are non-contending teams that provide a little upside in weaker lineups as they work September call-ups into the lineup. With Kluber and Hendricks priced way up on DraftKings, Roark or J.A. Happ (TOR) look like the best potential options. Both are priced up, just above $10,000, but get favorable matchups as large home favorites with implied totals against at 3.6 runs.

In tournaments, we like two AL West starters that have pitched well during the second half. Collin McHugh (HOU) gets a Mariners’ offense that projects as a really poor matchup on paper. They’re very good against RHP (fifth in wRC+, 22nd highest K Rate against RHP) but McHugh has dominated them in four starts this season (4-0, 25 IP, 16 H, 8 BB, 3 ER, with 24 K) and comes with a reasonable price tag. Sean Manaea (OAK) has posted a K Rate above 26 percent in four straight starts against pretty strong offenses (HOU, KC, HOU, CLE) and allowed just one earned run in those four outings. The Angels are a pest for DFS as they make so much contact, especially against LHP, but Manaea is at home and pitching very well down the stretch. His price hasn’t adjusted for the recent performance which makes him an intriguing GPP target.

Catcher Rankings

1) Gary Sanchez (NYY)

2) Stephen Vogt (OAK)

3) Jonathan Lucroy (TEX)

4) Victor Martinez (DET) – where eligible

5) Russell Martin (TOR)

6) Evan Gattis (HOU)

The catcher position is relatively deep with more catchers hitting in good lineup spots down the stretch but few have strong matchups or price tags. Gary Sanchez (NYY) is the top option against a LHP in a great hitting environment. He’s priced appropriately on both sites. Stephen Vogt (OAK) is the play our model likes most against Jered Weaver (.358 wOBA, .195 ISO allowed to LHBs since 2015) but it’s a difficult hitting environment in Oakland and the lineup support around him is quite poor. Where Vogt is priced down, like on DraftKings, he’s a fine cash game target ($3,300). It’s fine to look for other similarly priced options in better overall scoring environments like Russell Martin (TOR), Jonathan Lucroy (TEX), or Evan Gattis (HOU). If Manny Pina (MIL) gets into the lineup for Milwaukee he’s very cheap and hit sixth last time out. He’d represent a fine source of salary relief in Texas against Martin Perez.

First Base Rankings

1) Anthony Rizzo (CHC)

2) Chris Carter (MIL)

3) Edwin Encarnacion (TOR)

4) Mike Napoli (CLE) – cold

5) Paul Goldschmidt (ARZ)

6) Carlos Santana (CLE)

The first base position gets narrowed down rather quickly when you take into account price tags. Chris Carter (MIL) and Mike Napoli (CLE) are the two options with reasonable price tags facing weak opposing starters. Napoli gets Buck Farmer (.359 wOBA, .228 ISO against RHBs since 2015) who also projects to leave plenty of innings for the Tigers’ bullpen which has out-performed expectations through most of the season and is thin on middle relief. Carter gets to face Martin Perez who struggles to miss bats against RHBs (10.5 percent K Rate) and has allowed a .337 wOBA. Perez lives off ground balls and Carter as a rather extreme fly ball hitter with contact issues makes for an ideal matchup. Napoli’s all around production is a bit more consistent due to the table setters in front of him but he’s been in a difficult slump (-0.9 well hit) of late, which makes Carter a fine alternative if you want to avoid a cold streak. Another alternative would be the Cardinals first base situation as Brandon Moss (STL)/Matt Adams (STL) have softer price tags around the industry and a nice matchup with Tim Adleman but it’s difficult to project the Cardinals ever-changing lineup.

Second Base Rankings

1) Jose Altuve (HOU)

2) Matt Carpenter (STL)

3) Jason Kipnis (CLE)

4) Robinson Cano (SEA)

5) Dee Gordon (MIA)

6) Rougned Odor (TEX)

7) Logan Forsythe (TB)

8) Devon Travis (TOR)

9) Ben Zobrist (CHI)

Second base has some rather obvious site-specific values that helps clear up a rather congested top tier of options. Jose Altuve (HOU), Matt Carpenter (STL), and Jason Kipnis (CLE) all rank fairly closely atop our second base rankings. On FanDuel, they’re priced closely but Dee Gordon (MIA) remains underpriced ($2,700) for a leadoff role against RHP. The knock on Gordon’s matchup with Bartolo Colon (.319 wOBA, .166 ISO allowed to LHBs since 2015) isn’t Colon’s effectiveness against LHBs but his ability to control the running game. The price tag still leaves Gordon compelling but it’s not quite as strong a play as when we were picking on the Braves of late. On DraftKings, Matt Carpenter (STL) is priced way down ($4,100) which makes him the clear cut value at the position. Most of the top second basemen rate as negatives on the well-hit tool of late, so there’s little separating them other than price and matchup. Rougned Odor (TEX) is part of a Rangers’ offense with the highest implied team total and while he’s struggled of late and is priced up still makes for a great tournament target as part of a Rangers stack.

Shortstop Rankings

1) Francisco Lindor (CLE)

2) Carlos Correa (HOU)

3) Jonathan Villar (MIL) – where eligible

4) Brad Miller (TB)

5) Asdrubal Cabrera (NYM)

Francisco Lindor (CLE), Carlos Correa (HOU), Jonathan Villar (MIL), and Brad Miller (TB) all rank closely atop our shortstop rankings before a steep drop-off. We’d prefer to get exposure to one of those four in cash games as spending down a bit at SP should allow a spend at the shortstop position. Francisco Lindor is the cheapest of the group and facing the weakest starter, so he rates as the best value of the bunch.

Third Base Rankings

1) Matt Carpenter (STL) – where eligible

2) Josh Donaldson (TOR)

3) Jonathan Villar (MIL) – where eligible

4) Evan Longoria (TB)

5) Kris Bryant (CHC)

6) Jose Ramirez (CLE) – where eligible

7) Adrian Beltre (TEX)

The third base rankings are also pretty congested at the top which allows pricing to help differentiate among the group. On DraftKings, Matt Carpenter (STL) and Adrian Beltre (TEX) both appear under-priced at $4,100 and $4,200 respectively. The Cardinals and Rangers are the two offenses with implied team totals above five on this slate and both Carpenter/Beltre get elite lineup spots. With the price tags down we’re likely attacking the value with Carpenter second base eligible as well and Beltre locked into our third base slot. On FanDuel, Beltre and Evan Longoria (TB) have the best price tags. While Beltre gets Matt Garza (.333 wOBA, .157 ISO allowed to RHBs), Longoria will face James Shields (.343 wOBA, .214 ISO allowed to RHBs since 2015) in Chicago which is a significant park upgrade for Longoria’s power.

Outfield Rankings

1) Bryce Harper (WAS) – health risk

2) Mike Trout (LAA)

3) Ryan Braun (MIL)

4) Kevin Kiermaier (TB) – health risk

5) Ian Desmond (TEX)

6) Jose Bautista (TOR)

7) George Springer (HOU)

8) Carlos Beltran (TEX)

9) Carlos Gomez (TEX)

10) Trea Turner (WAS)

11) Yoenis Cespedes (NYM)

12) Kris Bryant (CHC) – where eligible

13) Jose Ramirez (CLE) – where eligible

14) Nelson Cruz (SEA)

15) Corey Dickerson (TB)

The outfield position is priced way down on DraftKings with a slew of affordable Texas bats available. Carlos Gomez (TEX), Carlos Beltran (TEX), and Ian Desmond (TEX) are all priced around $4,000 creating a lot of value and getting exposure to the highest implied run total on the slate. It’s rather easy to get your Texas exposure there. Bryce Harper (WAS) and Mike Trout (LAA) rate as our top outfield plays, as usual, but both come with some reasons for concern. Harper’s nursing an injury and even with a depressed price tag, the Nationals have little reason to rush him back with the division locked up. Even if Harper is in the lineup, the risk of him leaving early, makes him a shaky cash game target. Trout is priced up and facing Sean Manaea who has been lights out of late. This late in the season values often open up with September call-ups thrust into nice lineup spots so we’ll make sure to keep an eye on it in alerts, but the outfield on FanDuel appears challenging at first glance. Carlos Gomez is the one Texas outfielder priced down slightly and perhaps the best value. Bryce Harper is extremely cheap ($3,400) but as noted above a risky play in cash games. Kevin Kiermaier (TB) is also priced appropriately on both sites but rates in our model and is battling his own injury issues. As far as secondary values on both sites go, George Springer (HOU) and Stephen Piscotty (STL) are a bit cheaper than you’d expect on DraftKings and Piscotty is cheap enough on FanDuel. Domingo Santana (MIL) and Corey Dickerson (TB) are big power hitters with the platoon advantage in nice hitting environments. They normally profile as strong tournament plays but when thrust into the fifth spot, as they have of late, are viable cash game targets.

Stacks

Tier One

1) Texas Rangers

2) Cleveland Indians

Tier Two

3) Toronto Blue Jays

4) St. Louis Cardinals

5) Milwaukee Brewers

6) Washington Nationals – if Harper/Murphy both out, remove them from tier two

7) Tampa Bay Rays

The Rangers look like the chalk option on this slate. They’re facing one of the weakest opposing starters who is dealing with a league shift and a park downgrade. There are enough offenses in good spots that they shouldn’t be super chalky on FanDuel where they’re priced appropriately, but on DraftKings they’ll likely command ownership approaching 20-25 percent. If you’d like to pivot, Cleveland makes some sense.

Contrarian Targets:

Tampa Bay Rays – A nice big park shift for a team that relies on the long ball and they’re facing James Shields who has allowed 18 home runs in his last nine starts.

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