Thursday brings a small, six-game slate with an early start time of 6:40 p.m. ET. Even with the limited games, we still have some major pitching names taking the hill while all eyes will be on if Gerrit Cole ($10,300) can get back on track against a team that tagged him for five runs (one earned) his last time out.
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Editor’s Note: Tonight’s game between the Orioles and the Yankees has been postponed due to rain.
Biggest Moneyline Favorite
Note: This section highlights the pitcher whose team is the largest favorite on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Gerrit Cole, $10,300, NYY (-275) vs. BAL (+225) — It’s hard to feel good about Cole at this point. Sure, four of the five runs he allowed against the Orioles were unearned and his 3.01 FIP in that game shows he did pitch well. But the 46.2% hard-hit rate was still present. Cole was completely dominant to start and he racked up 10 strikeouts through six innings. We all know the stuff he has and how good he can be. I simply need to see more to trust him again at a salary over $10K. For what it’s worth, he has pitched his best baseball at Yankee Stadium this season, where he has a .325 wOBA and a 4.84 FIP but again, home runs continue to be a problem. In all, I’m sure the ownership will continue to be there for him but I’m simply not taking part of it, especially with potential rain rolling through.
Other notable favorites: Dustin May ($8,800; -235) vs. Diamondbacks, Josh Fleming ($5,900; -200) vs. Red Sox
Highest Projected Total
LAD (-235, 5.5 runs) vs. ARI (+195, 3.5 runs) 9.5 runs — This game is heavily weighted toward the Dodgers, as they have the benefit of facing Madison Bumgarner ($7,200) this evening. To say that Bumgarner in Arizona has been a disaster would be an understatement. This is only his second home start of the season, where the Astros tagged him for seven runs on seven hits in just 4.1 innings. In all, Bumgarner has an atrocious 9.08 FIP, a 48.6% hard-hit rate and a 3.8 HR/9 through 21.1 innings. To be fair, the Dodgers haven’t been a great hitting club against lefties with a .307 wOBA and a .130 ISO but it’s hard to back Bumgarner in any fashion right now.
Other notable team totals: Rays (5.5) vs. Red Sox,
Yankees (5.5) vs. Orioles
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Orioles @ Yankees —Rain is going to be a big concern here and this has a legitimate chance of being postponed if it starts to rain over the stadium. This will need another look later this evening.
Splits to Start
Note: This section will now show the combined stats from 2019 and 2020
Pitchers vs. Left-Handed Batters
Worst vs. LHB, wOBA, FIP
Drew Smyly, .405 8.41
Jake Arrieta, .379, 6.14
Dustin May, .359, 4.79
Best vs. LHB, wOBA, FIP
Madison Bumgarner, .238, 2.54
Gerrit Cole, .270, 3.42
Sonny Gray, .272, 3.51
Pitchers vs. Right-Handed Batters
Worst vs. RHB, wOBA, FIP
Drew Smyly, .360, 5.22
Madison Bumgarner, .332, 4.95
Jake Arrieta, .308, 3.74
Best vs. RHB, wOBA, FIP
Dustin May, .216, 3.08
Gerrit Cole, .252, 2.65
Sonny Gray, .260 3.13
Pitcher to Build Around
Sonny Gray, CIN at CHC, $9,600 — You may be hesitant to use Gray after he imploded his last time out against the Cardinals, allowing six runs on five hits in just 0.2 innings. I like this spot for Gray at Wrigley with the wind blowing in around 12 mph. In his last start against the Cubs, Gray tossed 6.2 innings allowing just two runs (zero earned) on one hit while striking out 11, good for a massive 39.2 DKFP. He wasn’t just lucky either, his 0.78 FIP in that start says it all. With a limited group to choose from to begin with, Gray is my guy.
Heavy Hitter to Pay For
Mike Yastrzemski, SF at SD, $5,300 — Speaking of pitchers who are struggling, Chris Paddack ($8,300) is another one. His numbers against lefties have been quite an issue with a .358 wOBA, a 5.38 FIP and six of the 10 home runs he’s allowed. Then you look at Yastrzemski, who not only is averaging 10.1 DKFP over his last 10 games but has a .406 wOBA and a .226 ISO vs. righties. I’ll continue to ride the hot hand with Yaz but especially in a good matchup.
Save Big by Drafting
Randy Arozarena, TB vs. BOS, $3,200 —If you’re really looking to save some salary, going all the way down to Arozarena is something I’ll be looking to do. We have a very small sample from him as he’s played in eight games. However, he’s quickly collected four home runs, five RBI and six runs scored. He’s a very cheap way to grab some exposure to a Rays lineup that has a 5.5 team total against the Red Sox and their putrid bullpen. With a 43% hard-hit rate, Arozarena is simply smashing the ball.
Favorite Team To Stack
TBR vs. BOS (vs. Mike Kickham) — We may as well stack the Rays while we’re at it. They face Mike Kickham ($5,700) who has made two starts and has a 5.38 FIP and 36.8% hard-hit rate allowed. The Rays are a very good hitting club against lefties overall with a .341 wOBA and a .211 ISO. They shouldn’t have much issue handling Kickham, which would then allow them to face the Red Sox bullpen, who has a 6.34 FIP over the last seven days.
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