Welcome to September 30 MLB DFS action. You’ll find Daily Fantasy Baseball Premium Cliff Notes for September 30 MLB DFS along with LIVE Premium Chat. Make sure you’re using the 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!
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- 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.
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September 30 MLB DFS CLIFF NOTES
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The last day of the regular season is here. We’re sad to see the season come to an end, but hockey and basketball are on the horizon and football is already here. Unfortunately, at the time of this writing (night before), there’s about half of the pitchers confirmed and there’s very little motivation for teams to roll out their strongest lineups as most teams have nothing to play for. As a result, we’ll try to keep things concise in our analysis today.
Carlos Carrasco (CLE) represents the top projected scorer at the starting pitcher position. Carrasco will likely pitch game 2 against the Astros next Saturday. He shouldn’t face limitations today, though the Indians will likely look to give Trevor Bauer some work off the pen. We’re holding strong to a 6 IP baseline for Carrasco, and he has a matchup against a Royals offense that’s ranked 23rd in wRC+. Carrasco is about to put the finishing touches to an impressive season, which saw him post a career high 29.3% K rate. He carries the highest K projection in this slate (7.5) and a 3.5 IRTA. It’s difficult to play cash games at this point of the season, but Carrasco is a strong play in that format even at his expensive price tags.
Given that Carrasco is fully priced though and we can’t fully guarantee the workload, it’s viable to look at cheaper targets. Noah Syndergaard (NYM) seems like a safe bet to pitch 5-6 innings. The Mets certainly don’t have anything to play for, but they’ve been in that position for a long time now. Syndergaard has a matchup against a hapless Marlins offense that’s ranked 25th in wRC+ and are striking out 23% of the time vs. RHP. Syndergaard has a slate low 2.8 IRTA. He’s a primary play in this slate.
Walker Buehler (LAD) and Robbie Ray (ARI) are also a part of this slate. Buehler and the Dodgers are looking to clinch the division. Given the context against a weak Giants offense, we think Buehler has a very good shot at reaching six innings. That alone makes him a viable play, and then you add on the fact that Buehler is a very good pitcher (28.6% K rate, 2.76 ERA/2.98 FIP) and he becomes an exciting target. Ray should face no limitations today. He’s only thrown 119 innings this season. The matchup against the Padres (23.8% K rate vs. LHP) in Petco gives Ray a great context. He’s a viable play in all formats.
Jack Flaherty (STL) and Marco Estrada (TOR) are additional plays to consider in this slate, particularly on DK. Estrada is just $4,100 and gets to pitch in controlled conditions in a pitcher’s park (Tropicana Field). It’s tough to trust him in cash games since he’s not a good pitcher, but in a slate where most pitchers workloads are up in the air, we think Estrada deserves to be considered in order to load up on bats.
The top two catchers in this slate are Francisco Cervelli (PIT) and Chris Iannetta (COL). Cervelli has received two rest days in a row and Iannetta was able to catch a breather last night. Both should be in the lineup today and they’re our favorite targets in all formats. Iannetta in particular is an attractive cash game play given the price tag ($3,100) relative to context (Coors Field). Iannetta has also been swinging the bat well of late, posting a 29.4% HHR over the L15 days.
If Mike Zunino (SEA) is able to crack the lineup, he’ll be worthy of tournament consideration given his individual power upside (.229 ISO vs. RHP since 2017) and a matchup against Yovani Gallardo (14.3% K rate vs. RHBs).
We saw Paul Goldschmidt (ARI) rest last night, but if he’s back in the lineup for game 162 he’ll have the platoon edge (.414 wOBA, .262 ISO baselines vs. LHP). Goldy is a primary play in this slate but he’s easier to reach on DK. The same goes for Edwin Encarnacion (CLE), who will likely have a decent amount of PH risk if he cracks the lineup but he’ll have matchups against an awful pitching staff.
Ian Desmond (COL) deserves to be considered regardless of lineup spot. He’s at home and the Rockies are playing to clinch the NL West today. Desmond has fine price tags on both sites, though the DK price ($3,900) certainly caught our eye as one that feels too cheap relative to context.
Carlos Santana (PHI) is our top FD value with a $3,100 price tag. He’s $1k cheaper than Encarnacion on that site, which makes him a more palatable target if playing cash games.
Jose Ramirez (CLE) is our top target at second base but the position is deep with viable targets today. Ramirez is a stronger target in tournaments.
Jose Altuve (HOU) is the next in line option at the position from a projection standpoint and he’s a little bit cheaper than Ramirez. We’re unsure if he’ll crack the lineup for the Astros for game 162, If he’s in there you’ll be considering him across all formats.
DJ LeMahieu (COL) is just $3,800 on DK and his team has something to play for. He hits second as well, which gives him PA upside beyond four. He’s our favorite cash game play at the position on DK.
Brian Dozier (LAD) and Adam Frazier (PIT) would be our primary cash game targets on FD IF they were to hit leadoff. Frazier has done so of late, and he’s in a much better hitting environment anyway (Great American Ball Park).
Nolan Arenado (COL) is the top option at the position. We currently don’t have a confirmed starter for Washington. They’ll likely go with a bullpen day, and the Rockies have yet to clinch the division. Arenado is reachable on DK where the price tag is just $4,900.
Josh Donaldson (CLE) is the preferred per dollar choice on FD. Donaldson is $3,600 on that site and he’ll have the platoon edge (.390 wOBA, .280 ISO baselines vs. LHP) against Eric Skoglund (.208 ISO allowed to RHBs).
Justin Turner (LAD) and Anthony Rendon (WSH) are additional options to consider in tournaments. Rendon gets the clear edge in projection between the two given the massive difference in context (Rendon @ Coors, Turner @ AT&T Park). Alex Bregman (HOU) is another high end target that’s on the road facing a terrible pitching staff. He deserves tournament consideration.
Macro thought at the position: don’t go cheap.
Francisco Lindor (CLE), Trea Turner (WSH) and Trevor Story (COL) represent the top targets at the position. Spend on one of these shortstops in cash games and move on. Lindor and Turner get an edge in projection as road hitters at the top of their respective lineups but Soty gets the edge in pricing. For some reason, Story is just $4,500 on DK after being priced in the $5k range for almost the entire season.
Manny Machado (LAD) doesn’t get the benefit of an elite hitting environment but he’ll have the platoon edge and should come with very modest ownership in this slate. Machado has posted a .372 wOBA and .241 ISO vs. LHP since the start of last season.
Charlie Blackmon (COL), Bryce Harper (WSH) and Mike Trout (LAA) are all a part of this slate and project as the top scorers regardless of hitting position. We also have Christian Yelich (MIL) in this slate and he’ll have the platoon edge. The Brewers are still fighting to clinch the NL Central, so we’re expecting them to trot their regular lineup. If you’re playing cash games, our lean would be on Blackmon followed by Yelich, Harper then Trout. This tier is easier to reach on DK where you could punt SP2 with Marco Estrada.
As long as the Nationals’ starting pitcher is RH, David Dahl (COL) deserves to be considered in all formats. Dahl is now up to a .398 wOBA and .291 ISO in his last 190 PAs vs. RHP and his price tags haven’t moved despite his insane run of production of late. The FD price tag in particular ($3,900) seems to cheap.
Matt Kemp (LAD) seems to be an important piece of roster construction on FD given his cheap price tag ($2,700) and our assumption that with the platoon edge he’ll be hitting cleanup.
1) Washington Nationals
2) Colorado Rockies
3) Cleveland Indians
4) Boston Red Sox
5) Milwaukee Brewers
6) Seattle Mariners
7) Houston Astros
8) New York Yankees
9) Los Angeles Dodgers
10) Pittsburgh Pirates