Monday night gets another week of summer off to a strong start with eight games on the main slate on DraftKings, starting at 7:05 p.m. ET. There are some potential weather situations to keep a close eye on in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and New York, followed by a couple of nice late games from sunny California.
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Julio Urías, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Milwaukee Brewers, ($10,000) – The Dodgers swept the Marlins after splitting four games in Milwaukee and will now host the Brewers for a three-game set to start the week. Urías got a win with five shutout innings and 23.7 DKFP against the Brewers in his most recent start and is now 6-0 over his past six starts with an impressive 0.95 ERA, 1.83 FIP and 8.76 K/9. He should be in a good spot to keep dealing since the Brew Crew has struggled all season against lefties, hitting only .219 as a team with a .296 wOBA and 87 wRC+. They came up empty Sunday against lefty starter Justin Steele, and Urías will hope to continue their struggles on Monday night.
Other Options – Max Scherzer ($11,300), Jordan Montgomery ($8,300)
Jeffrey Springs, Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Angels ($7,700) – Springs has posted at least 19 DKFP in three straight starts, allowing a total of only three earned runs while striking out 18 over 16 innings on the road in Detroit, Milwaukee and New York. He gets a good matchup Monday against the Angels, who have struggled at the plate all season, but especially in August, a timespan in which they are hitting only .215 as a team with only a 79 wRC+. Springs has already established a new career-high with 89 1⁄3 innings this season and has a solid 2.52 ERA and 3.23 FIP. He doesn’t have an elite strikeout rate or usually go deep into games, but his recent success and cushy matchup make him a strong option under $8K on Monday.
Other Option – Noah Syndergaard ($7,800), Adam Oller ($6,300)
Paul Goldschmidt, St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs ($6,200) – Goldschmidt posted five straight games with double-digit DKFP before finishing with 7.0 DKFP on Sunday afternoon in the Cards’ 6-4 win in Arizona. He’ll lead his team into Wrigley Field for this divisional contest against the Cubs, who he already has four homers against in 11 meetings this season. Goldschmidt hit a sizzling .417 in his first 17 games this month with seven home runs and a .553 wOBA. He has been demolishing lefties all season with a .435 average, .568 wOBA and 276 wRC+. Those kinds of numbers are usually skewed by small sample sizes, but Goldschmidt has 111 plate appearances against southpaws and has just been that incredibly dominant. He is a great bat to build around in his favorable Monday matchup highlighted below in stacks.
Yandy Díaz, Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Angels ($4,100) – Díaz got Sunday off but has collected multiple hits in four of his past five starts, including five doubles and a home run. He has hit .314 with a .383 wOBA over his past nine games and will likely return to his leadoff spot against lefty Tucker Davidson ($6,600). Against lefties this year, Díaz is hitting .313 with three homers, a .392 wOBA and a 166 wRC+. He’s a very solid midrange play with a high ceiling and has produced at least 12 DKFP in four of his past five starts.
Other Options – Nolan Arenado ($5,500), Jonathan India ($4,700)
Bryson Stott, Philadelphia Phillies vs. Cincinnati Reds ($3,900) – Stott picked up two more hits on Sunday and stole his seventh base of the year on his way to 11 DKFP. The 24-year-old lefty has gone 19-for-51 (.372) over his past 13 games with three of those stolen bases in addition to three doubles and two triples. He started the season slowly but is hitting .295 with a .335 wOBA since the All-Star break and has favorable home splits, making him one of the few SS under $4K with a high ceiling. If they manage to fit this game in around the rain, he’ll be a strong play.
Rodolfo Castro, Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Atlanta Braves ($2,400) – Castro has been a punchline over the past few weeks after running the bases with his phone in his pocket, but he has actually been playing well and offering nice value. Over his past nine contests, he is 12-for-35 (.343) with a stolen base, two doubles, a triple and two home runs to average 8.7 DKFP per contest. He comes remarkably cheaply for a bat in the middle of the order and can slot in at either 2B or 3B depending on the rest of your roster construction for Monday night.
Other Options – Jose Miranda ($3,900), Nick Madrigal ($2,800), Albert Pujols ($2,000)
Mookie Betts, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Milwaukee Brewers, ($6,500) – Due to their high expectations, it’s easy to overlook how dominant the Dodgers have been. They keep living up to the hype, though, and are strong plays once again in this matchup with lefty Eric Lauer ($9,000). Betts has been bashing lefties all season with a .319 average, a .422 wOBA and 176 wRC+. He is hitting .324 in his first 17 games in August and has averaged 10.5 DKFP over his past 10 games. He has at least 9.0 DKFP in 10 of his past 15 contests, including two of his three games last week against the Brewers.
Seiya Suzuki, Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals, ($4,700) – The 28-year-old rookie has had an up-and-down season in Chicago, but he has been settling into a nice groove after missing over a month due to a left ring finger sprain. He went 3-for-3 with a home run and 24 DKFP on Sunday and is 8-for-23 (.348) with two doubles, a home run and a stolen base over his past six games, with at least 8.0 DKFP in five of those contests.
Other Options – Ronald Acuña Jr. ($5,400), Starling Marte ($5,000)
Harold Ramírez, Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Angels ($3,400) – Ramírez has been one of my most frequently highlighted players this season since he consistently turns in solid performances at an affordable salary. Since returning from a month-long stay on the IL, Ramírez is 9-for-21 (.420) with a double, a home run and a .453 wOBA. He had three hits and two RBI on Sunday and has been a great play vs. LHP all season with a .377 batting average, .413 wOBA and 181 wRC+.
Jake Fraley, Cincinnati Reds at Philadelphia Phillies ($2,500) – Fraley has been very successful as the Reds’ leadoff hitter and homered in each of his past two games giving him seven homers in his 33 games this season. He’s hitting .253 with a .368 wOBA and 130 wRC+ in his 33 games this season and has double-digit DKFP in seven of his past nine. If the rain holds off, he’ll be a very popular play at this price, but his hot bat and high ceiling make him very hard to overlook.
Other Options – Dylan Carlson ($3,900), Greg Allen ($2,000), Robbie Grossman ($2,000)
TEAMS TO STACK
St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs – The Cardinals have been a great option for stacking over the past month coming out of the All-Star break and are particularly potent against lefties like Drew Smyly ($7,500), who starts for the Cubs on Monday at Wrigley. On the season, the Cardinals lead the Majors with a .350 wOBA and 129 wRC+ vs. LHP and since the break, they’re in the top five of almost every major offensive category. Paul Goldschmidt (highlighted above) and Nolan Arenado ($5,500) are top-tier bats to build around, especially against lefties. Tommy Edman ($4,300), Paul DeJong ($3,800) and Tyler O’Neill ($4,800) also make sense in the midrange in this matchup. Lars Nootbaar ($2,500) and Albert Pujols ($2,000) are available as cheap bargains with upside and have turned in some excellent recent performances.
Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Angels – The Rays also get a matchup with a lefty as they take on Tucker Davidson, making his third start since coming to the Angels at the trade deadline. He has gone 1-1 with a 7.20 ERA and 6.72 FIP in those two outings, giving up two home runs, eight runs and 10 hits in 10 innings. He has allowed righties to post a .366 wOBA against him in his six games overall this season, so rolling with Rays’ right-handed bats is a strong strategy to consider. I like Diaz and Ramírez, as mentioned above, but you can also add in Manuel Margot ($3,700) and Randy Arozarena ($5,000) to stack the top part of the lineup. The lower half of the lineup has some nice potential value as well with righties Francisco Mejía ($3,500), Isaac Paredes ($3,200) and Taylor Walls ($2,500) rounding out a nice Rays stack.
Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $325K Relay Throw [$100K to 1st]
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is z.thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
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