Welcome to September 26 MLB DFS action here at DailyRoto. Below you’ll find our Daily Fantasy Baseball Premium podcast for September 26 MLB DFS along with our LIVE Premium Chat and cliff notes. Make sure you’re using our customizable projections tool, you’re actively participating in the live chat, and you’re reviewing the cliff notes to supplement your research and roster construction process. Very best of luck in tonight’s action!
CUSTOMIZABLE PROJECTIONS | HITTER SPLITS | PITCHER SPLITS | SORTABLE STATS | PITCHER TRENDS | LINEUPS | LEADERS
September 26 MLB DFS Position Timestamps
00:40 Starting Pitcher
12:13 First Base
15:25 Second Base
18:30 Third Base
- In cash games, we recommend focusing on value plays to build your rosters (far right hand column of Projections page linked above). Value plays are those we feel have the highest probability of out-earning their current price tag. By packing value plays into your roster, you’re creating a team with a higher floor.
- In tournaments, we recommend building a core of the best value plays and then complementing them with players who have a high ceiling. This combination is essentially turning up the variance on a strong foundation and we believe often is the best recipe for tournament success.
September 26 MLB DFS CLIFF NOTES
For full SP rankings, see our projections: https://dailyroto.com/mlb-customizable-projections
Chris Sale (BOS) is atop our pitcher rankings (surprise, surprise). The biggest concern with Sale is roster construction. He’s still our top value on both sites, but closer to the pack than usual on a full slate with expensive bats we’d like to use. As usual, Sale is a better value in a vacuum on FD, but actually easier to use on DK because of more roster flexibility. He’s a strong option in cash games in all formats but not a must play on this slate.
One reason Sale isn’t a must play is the savings that Alex Wood (LAD) offers. Wood is just as heavy of a favorite (-250) and actually has a slightly lower IRTA (2.9). He does lag behind Sale because of lower baseline K rate and less longevity. We’re projecting Sale for nearly a full inning more. Still, the price tag mitigates that risk, and the matchup against the Padres is one of the best ones that exists.
On DK, the two mid-low priced options that fit nicely if going all the way up to Sale are Dinelson Lamet (SD) and Jordan Montgomery (NYY). As is usually the case with Lamet, the opposing lineup complexion will matter quite a bit given his extreme splits. Lamet offers big time K upside for the price (28.7 K%, 6.9 K projection). Montgomery has less upside in the K department but a better floor as a -150 favorite against the Rays with a lower IRTA. Montgomery is coming off of a stellar outing against the Orioles and features a plus K rate to compensate for a bit below average BB and GB rates.
Our Dallas Keuchel (HOU) projection may be on the optimistic side given recent HR issues and a mediocre game log since returning from the DL at the end of July. However, he’s affordable alongside Alex Wood, and our projections are fond of him in this matchup. The Rangers are middle of the pack in wRC+ against LHP, but carry a high 24.6 K% in that split.
One cheap play with upside is Rafael Montero (NYM), but we view that as a tournament option only. Montero can strike out a batter an inning, but his poor control and 4.71 xFIP has led to some short outings.
We can’t end the SP section without mentioning a $44 Bartolo Colon (MIN) on FD, an ode to the retiring pitcher’s age in what could be his last start. Colon is tied with Jose Urena, a bad SP throwing in Coors Field, for our lowest projection on the site. Yet there’s some tournament intrigue because he’s essentially free, allowing you to load up on bats like never before. The flip side to that argument – given hitter variance and the importance of at least a top half SP score on a 1 SP site, it might not matter that Colon is free. We talk through this on the podcast.
Gary Sanchez (NYY) is clearly the top catcher in this slate. He’ll have the platoon edge in Yankee Stadium, and he’s generated a 31.3% L15 HHR. The only challenge with Sanchez is a price tag that’s pretty full in a 15 game slate, but on a site like FD where the price tag is lighter than usual ($3,500) you could consider him in all formats.
The catcher position has healthy depth behind Sanchez, which makes him a viable fade in cash games. J.T. Realmuto (MIA) is $4,000 on DK and he’ll hit fifth in Coors Field with the platoon edge. Chris Iannetta (ARI) remains cheap on FD ($2,700) and he gets good lineup spots vs. LHP (usually second or fifth). He’ll be in Chase Field with a juicy matchup (Matt Moore). Stephen Vogt (OAK) carries a punt price on FD and he’ll have the platoon edge for Brewers team with an IRT of 5.5 runs. If you needed to go the cheap route on DK, Wilson Ramos (TB) is $2,800 and he usually hits fifth vs. LHP. He’ll be in Yankee Stadium.
The cash game conversation surrounds Albert Pujols (LAA) at first base. Pujols fits the slate perfectly. For starters, he’s a part of a team we’re expecting to have a high IRT on the road in Chicago, where warm temperatures are still around. Pujols has been a below average hitter this season, but there’s still some pop in that bat (.170 ISO vs. RHP since 2016) and he’ll see plus matchups which includes the starter (Chris Volstad) and a below average pen. Most importantly, Pujols is very cheap on both sites.
The alternatives at the position in cash games are Eric Thames (MIL) (specifically on FD), Miguel Cabrera (DET), Carlos Santana (CLE) (good price tag on FD) and Matt Holliday (NYY) (if he gets a good lineup spot vs. a LHP). The common theme here is that these hitters have cheap price tags as well.
Jose Altuve (HOU) is the top projected scorer at second base. He’s in a perfect context. Altuve is on the road in Texas facing Cole Hamels, and the latter isn’t missing bats this season (16.7% K rate). The only challenge with Altuve in cash games is reaching for an appropriate price tag. We prefer him in tournaments and that’s not a knock on the play itself.
Daniel Murphy (WSH) feels like the perfect alternative to Altuve and with a more manageable price tag on FD ($3,400). Murphy has a very strong matchup (Jake Thompson) on the road and he’s generated a 37.5% L15 HHR. He doesn’t have the speed of upside that Altuve offers, but Murphy is a remarkable hitter (.394 wOBA, .241 ISO vs. RHP since 2016). If you needed salary relief on FD, Eric Sogard (MIL) is fine.
On DK, Ian Kinsler (DET) is essentially free for a road leadoff hitter. He’s just $3,300 on that site and we have him pegged for a .194 ISO baseline vs. LHP. He fits the slate well on that site. Neil Walker (MIL) is in a better overall context than Kinsler, but he’ll cost you a bit more on DK. Walker is a fine splits the difference option in cash games.
Yoan Moncada (CHW) still has a decent price tag on DK that you can attack in tournaments. We still feel like the price tag is on the light side ($4,100) relative to his upside, which he’s flashed of late (four HRs and two SBs over the L10 games).
Nolan Arenado (COL) doesn’t have much competition for the top honors at third base on FD where Freddie Freeman (ATL) is only 1B eligible. Arenado is in Coors Field facing a contact oriented pitcher, but his full price tag a challenging fit in cash games. We prefer both of these pricey targets in tournaments.
The cash game values at the position are site dependent. On DK, Evan Longoria (TB) is clearly underpriced for a matchup vs. a LHP in Yankee Stadium. There’s a chance that the Rays were priced to face Luis Severino, who’s no longer starting. Longoria is just $3,300 on that site. Luis Valbuena (LAA) usually hits towards the bottom of the lineup, but he’ll have the platoon edge in Chicago for a team we’re expecting to have an IRT above 5.5 runs.
On FD, Mike Moustakas (FD) is $2,600 in a matchup that’s perfect for his power stroke (Anibal Sanchez). If you had more funds to spend at the position, Travis Shaw (MIL) projects well in a matchup against a pitcher we’re not projecting to be any good (Deck McGuire) and the price tag isn’t restrictive ($3,400).
Trea Turner (WSH) carries the top projection at the shortstop position. The context is about as good as it gets for Turner. He’s on the road in a park upgrade for his offense – this is a good opportunity for Turner to generate five PAs. Jake Thompson isn’t any good, but we’re expecting him to regress further (4.14 ERA/5.96 FIP).
Turner is a very good play in a vacuum, but unfortunately the price tags aren’t in his favor for cash game usage. There are simply better price tags that fit the slate better at the position. FD is the perfect example. Corey Seager (LAD) is somehow just $2,600 on that site. The HHR looks ugly of late, but we have Seager pegged for a .366 wOBA and .202 ISO vs. RHP. He’s a great hitter, especially when you compare him to other peers at the position. If you don’t want to deal with Seager’s cold bat, Carlos Correa (HOU) will have the platoon edge in Texas and he’s just $3,400 on that site. On DK, teammate Alex Bregman (HOU) is $4,200 and he gets strong lineup spots vs. LHP. The position is priced a bit more appropriately on DK, but you’re still shopping around the $4K-$4.5K range in cash games unless a punt emerges.
We finally get to tell you why other high priced targets at other positions that are good values in a vacuum won’t crack most cash game lineups. Mike Trout (LAA) is breaking our projections (over 13 DK points as a projection is insane) as he’s on the road in Chicago, which represents a huge upgrade in hitting environment for him and the Angels offense. Giancarlo Stanton (MIA) is in Coors Field and he’ll have the platoon edge. Coors Field and platoon edge in the same sentence for Stanton equals massive projection. Stanton has generated a .433 wOBA and an incredible .394 ISO (!) vs. LHP since 2015. Trout gets the edge in cash games thanks to a slightly softer price tag, but you’ll have an opportunity to roster them both on DK if you’re willing to punt SP2.
Trout and Stanton project well ahead of every hitter in the OF, but you’ll have to fetch better price tags to surround them. Kole Calhoun (LAA) immediately stands out on DK where he’s $3,400. He’s the road leadoff hitter for an Angels offense that’s in a perfect context. We have lots of soft price tags in the OF on FD. George Springer (HOU) is just $3,300 and he’s leading off in Arlington, Jay Bruce (CLE) is $2,900 and he’s facing Bartolo Colon. Bruce also has a favorable price tag on DK. Nick Delmonico (CHW) has a punt price tag and he’ll have the platoon edge. Matt Holliday (NYY) is sub $3,000 and we’re expecting him to draw a favorable lineup spot vs. LHP.
Justin Upton (LAA) has generated a 36.7% L15 HHR and there’s a chance that a loaded OF position keeps the ownership tame in tournaments. Charlie Blackmon (COL) will have the platoon edge in Coors Field, but he falls well short of Trout and Stanton in projection in this slate. We like both of these hitters in tournaments.
1) Colorado Rockies
2) Los Angeles Angels
A chalky first tier as these teams carry the highest IRTs, and the Angels manage to join the Rockies in this tier given a large positive park shift playing on the road and a matchup against the horrific White Sox pitching staff, led by Chris Volstad (5.579 ERA in 18 AAA starts and 9 relief appearances).
3) Miami Marlins
4) Washington Nationals
5) Milwaukee Brewers
The Brewers are without a doubt our go-to contrarian stack on the year – their ownership and team total don’t usually reflect the event upside they carry. That’s the case again tonight against Deck McGuire, a rookie RHP making his debut as a starter. McGuire did pitch well as a starter in AA after getting pounded in AAA a year ago. ZiPS projects him for a 5.65 ERA and whopping 1.85 HR/9.
6) Cleveland Indians
7) Houston Astros
8) Kansas City Royals
9) Arizona Diamondbacks
The Astros and Diamondbacks represent our favorite stacks from this tier. Both are event oriented teams with several power RHBs to take advantage of homer-prone pitchers in plus ballparks. Hamels is the more skilled pitcher and doesn’t give up quite as much power, but does hold a career-worst 4.82 xFIP. The Diamondbacks get Matt Moore who has just a 37.9 GB rate, which has led to 1.35 HR/9 as the K rate has dipped this season.