The MLB season is underway and it’s a great time to get in on some DraftKings action. Monday features an 11-game main slate, starting at 7:05 p.m., to start the week off right.
Set your DraftKings lineups here: MLB $350K Relay Throw [$100K to 1st]
Zac Gallen, ARI vs. OAK, $8,800 - I can barely comprehend the pitching on this slate. With 11 games, how are there not better starting pitchers available? The options are a complete dumpster fire. This what brings me to Gallen, who is pitching reasonably well with strikeout upside early in the season. In four starts, he has a 2.74 ERA and is striking out 10.80 hitters per nine innings. Unfortunately, his ERA is facing some regression because he’s really lucky to have a 93.8 LOB%. Hopefully, the regression doesn’t hit today.
Ross Stripling, LAD vs. SEA, $7,900 - Arguably, Stripling is the best overall pitcher on today’s slate. Combine this with a home matchup against a weak offense in the Mariners and he figures to see massive ownership. Stripling is averaging 16.7 DKFP this season and the only real concern I have with him is his pitch count. He only threw 70 pitches in his last outing and he is yet to top 100 pitches in a start this season. Even so, Stripling should have a safe floor and that is more important than ceiling on a slate with such limited pitching choices.
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Mitch Garver, MIN vs. KC, $5,000 - The start to the season for Garver has been massively disappointing. After crushing the ball all of last season, he hasn’t quite found that rhythm at the plate in 2020. Despite this, I can’t look past what he did against left-handed pitching last year. After putting up a 198 wRC+ against southpaws in 2019, a matchup against Kris Bubic ($6,400) could jumpstart his season.
Travis d’Arnaud, ATL vs. WAS, $2,500 - I don’t understand this price tag. Not only is d’Arnaud extremely cheap in a favorable matchup against Anibal Sanchez ($7,200), he’s hitting extremely well this season. He is averaging 10 DKFP per game with a hit in eight of his past nine games. It’s been two weeks since d’Arnaud was priced under $4,000 so seeing his price tag all the way down at $2,500 feels like a mistake.
Freddie Freeman, ATL vs. WAS, $5,300 - Above I mentioned that d’Arnaud has a favorable matchup against Sanchez. The veteran pitcher has opened the season with a 9.69 ERA, a spike in fly balls and a dip in velocity. At 36 years old, it’s starting to feel like Sanchez might be washed. If this is the case, we want to stack the Braves and those lineups should include Freeman as the best hitter on the team. He’s reached base in seven consecutive starts.
Edwin Encarnacion, CWS vs. DET, $3,900 - Yesterday, the White Sox had a historic moment by hitting back-to-back-to-back-to-back homers. I think I wrote the right number of “backs” there but who is to say. Few humans can count that high. Encarnacion was the man to break the streak. This continued the start of a really rough season for the veteran slugger. He has hit at least 32 homers in eight consecutive seasons, so I think a bounce back is imminent. There is too much track record of Encarnacion as an elite power hitter for him to keep struggling. This should be the floor price for Edwin.
Max Muncy, LAD vs. SEA, $4,800 - After a brief slump, Muncy is averaging 14.5 DKFP in his past two games. This includes a homer yesterday, so now looks like a good time to jump on Muncy. Mariners starter Justin Dunn ($5,000) has a 4.85 ERA although his underlying numbers indicate he’s pitching much worse. He has a 7.21 FIP and is lucking out with a .205 BABIP.
Jonathan Schoop, DET at CHW, $4,300 - I have targeted Schoop for cheap quite a bit this season. Not many cheap second basemen have the kind of power he has and he has hit five homers so far this season. Schoop is better against lefties than righties and he gets a nice park upgrade by playing in Chicago today.
Justin Turner, LAD vs. SEA, $4,800 - Like Muncy, Turner is one of many Dodgers bats we can target against Dunn. The Dodgers are one of the top stacks on the slate and they correlate nicely with Stripling. It stands to reason that a big performance from the L.A. bats means that Stripling picks up the win bonus. Turner comes into today riding a 10-game hitting streak, making him one of the safest plays on the slate.
Asdrubal Cabrera, WAS at ATL, $4,200 - Despite always being low owned, Cabrera keeps finding his way into top GPP lineups. Over the past week, he has games with 20 and 48 DKFP. Overall, Cabrera is averaging 8.6 DKFP and it seems that whenever the Nationals’ offense has a big game, Cabrera plays a pivotal role in stacks.
Fernando Tatis Jr., SD at TEX, $5,400 - Quickly moving up the ranks of the best players in baseball, Tatis is more often than not the shortstop I am looking to pay for unless there is a game at Coors Field. The young star has hit nine homers and is among the favorites to win the National League MVP. This all leads to an average of 12.6 DKFP.
Jonathan Villar, MIA vs. NYM, $4,200 - Some players are much better for fantasy than real life and Villar fits that bill. Due to his stolen base upside, he often has massive DFS upside despite his status as a journeyman in the MLB. In the past four games, Villar has swiped four bags and averaged 12.25 DKFP over this stretch.
Mike Trout, LAA vs. SF, $6,100 - Rename the stud outfield section of this article the Mike Trout section going forward. As per usual, the American League MVP favorite is tearing the cover off of the ball. Despite missing games due to the birth of his son, Trout is already up to nine homers for the season, including four in his past six games. Over the past week, he has games with 40, 18 and 25 DKFP.
Mike Tauchman, NYY vs. BOS, $3,900 - Tauchman has such an odd career path. After failing to hit the ball at all starting his career in Colorado, he seems to have emerged as a really solid player for the Yankees. It looked like it might have been a fluke that he put up a 128 wRC+ last year but he’s at a 147 wRC+ this season. As long as he doesn’t regress and his price stays cheap, I’ll continue to get exposure to him.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is gehrenberg) 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 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.