Well, this strange 2020 MLB campaign will roll on Tuesday night with a 10-game featured slate on DraftKings. We’ve already been handed a few COVID-based postponements for this evening’s schedule; however, tonight will also mark in the return to action for the Blue Jays, the Nationals and the Marlins, who each haven’t seen the field in over 96 hours. Heck, based on win percentage, Miami still technically leads the National League East despite the fact the squad’s only completed three contests. Again, this season has been and will continue to be weird.
Let’s break it down position-by-position.
Lance Lynn, TEX at OAK, $9,900 - Lynn has been incredible to begin 2020, throwing 12 scoreless innings in his first two outings of the season. These haven’t been empty calorie appearances, either. The right-hander comes into Tuesday’s matchup with Oakland in possession of a 37.8% strikeout rate and a somehow even more impressive 36.4% infield fly ball rate. Needless to say, there’s a reason that the 45 batters Lynn faced in July combined to produce just a .139 expected batting average. Considering the Athletics currently own the league’s fifth-highest strikeout rate (26.1%) and its third-lowest ISO (.119), I feel comfortable going back to the well with Lynn this evening.
Other Option: Lucas Giolito ($9,100), Brandon Woodruff ($8,300)
Cristian Javier, HOU at ARI, $6,500 - Obviously a one-start sample is still a one-start sample regardless of who a pitcher faced, but Javier’s outing against the Dodgers was impressive last Wednesday. It really shouldn’t be all that big a surprise that the right-hander was able to strike out eight opponents in that matchup - Javier did rack up 170 across three levels and 113.2 innings in 2019 - but we just don’t normally see Los Angeles struggle to make contact. In fact, the Dodgers own MLB’s fourth-lowest strikeout rate (20.1%) and its second-lowest chase rate (23.7%). The Diamondbacks do not own either of those things, instead choosing to possess the league’s worst wRC+ (52) through 10 games. Get some exposure to the rookie.
Other Option: Jesus Luzardo ($7,600)
Curious about when major leagues and events will return? Check out our DraftKings Sports Calendar for the latest updates.
Editor’s note: Kurt Suzuki is not starting Tuesday vs. Mets
Kurt Suzuki, WAS vs. NYM, $3,800 - There are a few things to consider here. First, the Nationals might be getting Juan Soto ($4,900) back this evening, which improves the offensive potency of their entire lineup. Second, even with Soto back in the mix, Suzuki will likely bat sixth or seventh for Washington in a matchup against the left-handed Steven Matz ($7,400). Going back to the beginning of 2017, Suzuki has slashed .317/.367/.596 with a .403 wOBA within the split.
Robinson Chirinos, TEX at OAK, $3,300 - Much like the aforementioned Suzuki, it’s been fun to watch Chirinos thrive versus southpaw pitching the past few seasons. In fact, in 323 plate appearances since the start of 2017, the backstop has mustered a .906 OPS and a 140 wRC+ when getting the opportunity to square off with an LHP. Luzardo’s stuff is electric, but it’s hard to be picky at this price point.
Other Option: Chadwick Tromp ($3,300)
Anthony Rizzo, CHC vs. KC, $5,400 - Few hitters have started the season better than Rizzo. Despite sporting a dismal .182 BABIP through his first 44 plate appearances of 2020, the veteran has still managed a .432 OBP and a .281 ISO, all while primarily hitting out of the two-spot for the Cubs. Brady Singer ($6,900) has been decent for the Royals through two starts, but I still don’t necessarily trust the rookie, let alone Kansas City’s bullpen.
Other Option: Daniel Murphy ($4,500)
Jesus Aguilar, MIA at BAL, $4,000 - While it’s impossible to know how the Marlins will be able to pick themselves up after more than a week on the sideline, Aguilar has been red-hot to begin 2020 with a pair of home runs in this first three contests. We also know the 30-year-old can smash left-handed pitchers like John Means ($6,400). In 2017 and 2018, Aguilar complied a .382 wOBA and a 23.7% HR/FB ratio in 268 plate appearances within the split. Add in a high-leverage lineup spot and the Orioles’ bullpen and it’s easy to see why this salary is a bargain.
Other Option: Yuli Gurriel ($3,700)
Jose Altuve, HOU at ARI, $5,300 - Understandably, people are thrilled that Altuve has struggled so heavily to begin 2020. Still, that doesn’t change the fact that this has been the exact situation where the diminutive second baseman has thrived for more than a half-decade. I mean, just last season Altuve slashed .331/.380/.677 with a .429 wOBA in his 143 plate appearances against left-handed pitching. With Madison Bumgarner’s ($7,200) fastball velocity all the way down to 88.2 mph and his cutter sitting at 83.6 mph through two starts, I don’t see how he survives Houston’s lineup.
Other Option: Ryan McMahon ($4,600)
Hanser Alberto, BAL vs. MIA, $3,600 - I’m a simple man. If I see that Baltimore has drawn a left-handed opponent, I’ll be getting at least some level of exposure to Alberto. Look, I understand that hitting in the top-half of the Orioles’ lineup in 2020 isn’t exactly an accomplishment, but we’re still talking about a high-leverage slot for someone hitting .409 in his past 236 plate appearances within the split. If I were Caleb Smith ($6,600), I’d be careful.
Other Option: Starlin Castro ($3,300)
Alex Bregman, HOU at ARI, $5,000 - You can take everything I said about Altuve and apply it here, except that Bregman is less expensive and was even better versus southpaws in 2019. The former second-overall pick was unstoppable within the split, posting a .393 ISO and a 205 wRC+ in 194 plate appearances. Don’t think of it as stacking Astros, if that’s what’s making you uncomfortable; think of it as exploiting Bumgarner’s diminishing stuff.
Other Option: Anthony Rendon ($5,400)
Asdrubal Cabrera, WAS vs. NYM, $3,600 - I mentioned above that Washington is expecting Soto back this evening. I didn’t mention that the team is also likely to regain the services of Howie Kendrick ($3,700), meaning the Nationals will be at full strength for the first time all season. Still, I’d anticipate Cabrera slotting in somewhere in the middle of the club’s batting order, which is almost enough alone to understand his value at this minimal price tag. However, when you include the Mets’ 6.21 bullpen ERA, an inexpensive Washington stack is starting to sound pretty good.
Other Option: Renato Nunez ($4,000)
Corey Seager, LAD at SD, $4,600 - This is a more than fair price point for Seager, who currently leads all qualified players in baseball with an eye-popping .660 expected wOBA. That figure is sure to regress at some point, yet I have my doubts that it’s Tuesday night in a matchup with Dinelson Lamet ($9,500). Lamet’s been great through a pair of starts, but I still have my concerns about a starter without a third pitch. Plus, when the RHP has had his struggles throughout his career, it’s usually been a left-handed bat that’s been responsible.
Other Option: Trevor Story ($5,700)
David Fletcher, LAA at SEA, $3,800 - The light-hitting Fletcher is a more enticing option in cash games than in tournaments; however, even without much pop, there’s obvious value in batting leadoff for a team with an implied run total of over five on Tuesday. Seattle’s bullpen has lived up to expectations so far in 2020, owing an AL-worst 6.78 FIP across 46.0 innings of work. That’s a pretty big issue considering Justin Dunn ($4,900) isn’t fully stretched out yet.
Cody Bellinger, LAD at SD, $4,900 - Whenever you get an opportunity to utilize the reigning National League MVP for less than $5K, you do it. Sure, Bellinger’s had a rough start to 2020, but the 25-year-old has shown signs of life so far in August, hitting a home run in each of the two games he’s appeared. Also, like I said above, Lamet’s issues tend to stem from encounters with LHBs. To wit, the right-hander has surrendered 1.41 home runs per nine within the split for his career.
Other Options: Mike Trout ($6,200), George Springer ($5,400)
Teoscar Hernandez, TOR at ATL, $3,800 - Going back to the start of last July, Hernandez is slashing .266/.342/.609 with an insane .343 ISO and .389 wOBA. Yes, there’s been a lot of swing-and-miss in there, but when Hernandez makes contact, no one has ever questioned the power. Let’s see if he can keep the hot streak alive in a right-on-left matchup with Max Fried ($8,500) this evening.
Other Options: Matt Kemp ($3,600), Jo Adell ($3,200)
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) 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.