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DraftKings Sportsbook Game Notes
Biggest Moneyline Favorite
Note: This section highlights the pitcher whose team is the largest favorite on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Gerrit Cole, $10,500, New York Yankees (-220) vs. Tampa Bay Rays (+180)— If it’s strikeout upside you seek, look no further than this matchup. The Rays have been striking out at a fairly high clip against righties on the season at 24.5%. More recently though, over the last week, that number has jumped to 30%. Now we have Cole, who has a 40.2% K% of his own, facing them in Tampa. They’re one of the best teams in the league against the fastball (8th) but are also one of the worst against the slider (29th). His slider has been used to putaway batters 33% of the time this season, which is second behind his changeup.
Cole continues to generate an insane amount of swings-and-misses at a rate of 15%. When opposing hitters are making contact, only 29.8% are hard contact. Cole is essentially checking all the boxes you’d want to see from a pitcher in the mid-$10K range. This Rays offense has really been nothing special with a 99 wRC+, a .302 wOBA and a .147 ISO against righties. With the Rays going 3-6 as home underdogs this season, not as if you needed to see that, it’s hard not to like Cole in this spot.
Other notable favorite: Danny Duffy ($8,900; -155) at Detroit Tigers
Highest Projected Total
Oakland Athletics (+130; 3.5 runs) at Boston Red Sox (-150; 4.5 runs) 9 runs — As of this morning, this was the only game with a projected total of nine runs. The Red Sox are one of the biggest favorites and have a 4.5 team total. They’ll be facing James Kaprielian ($4,500), who is being called up from Triple-A and make his first major league start. He was used in relief twice last season but has been a starter in the minors. He’s shown really good strikeout upside and good control as he made his way through the system. He primarily uses a fastball and slider pitches the Red Sox rank 16th and 13th against.
The only downfall here is that both teams have not been strong on hitting the over on the game total. These teams have combined to go 36-37-1 on the over this season. I do think the over can be achieved in this one with the Athletics boasting strong numbers against lefties. Eduardo Rodriguez ($8,200) is set to take the mound against a club with a 116 wRC+, .327 wOBA and a .193 ISO against lefties.
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Splits to Start
These numbers now reflect the current 2021 stats and include pitchers with a minimum of 10 IP.
Pitchers vs. Left-Handed Batters
Worst vs. LHB, wOBA, FIP
Casey Mize, .393, 6.10
Justin Dunn, .382, 8.48
John Gant, .342, 5.56
Best vs. LHB, wOBA, FIP
Brandon Woodruff, .176, 1.39
Gerrit Cole, .178, 1.15
Jose Urquidy, .230, 3.16
Pitchers vs. Right-Handed Batters
Worst vs. RHB, wOBA, FIP
Max Fried, .516, 6.85
Eduardo Rodriguez, .342, 4.27
Jose Urquidy, .341, 5.17
Best vs. RHB, wOBA, FIP
Zac Gallen, .199, 2.23
Justin Dunn, .202, 2.47
Brandon Woodruff, .232, 3.10
Pitcher to Build Around
Danny Duffy, Kansas City Royals at Detroit Tigers, $8,900 — Duffy has been pitching on a completely differently this season. Through 35 2⁄3 innings, Duffy has a 2.43 FIP (1.26 ERA) a 28% K%, a 7.0% BB% and only a 0.50 HR/9. He’s been fooling batters a lot more this season as well with a 14.1% swing-and-miss rate, which has been a huge jump from the 10.9% he was at least season.
Now he faces a very strikeout prone Tigers team that sports a 27.7% K% against righties, the third-highest rate in the league. When Duffy faced them earlier this season, he struck out eight while scattering four hits and allowing no runs in five innings. The Tigers struggle against the slider, which Duffy has been using as his putaway pitch and has generated a 40% swing-and-miss rate on. At only $8,900, Duffy is my favorite play on the slate.
Stud Hitter to Pay For
Jose Abreu, Chicago White Sox vs. Minnesota Twins, $4,800 — Abreu is just so good, man. He provides so much power regardless of who he’s facing and tonight he gets J.A. Happ ($7,600). Happ has been giving up a lot of fly balls thus far at 47.6% through 28 1⁄3 innings. Last year with the Yankees through 49 1⁄3 innings, he was at 35.6%. Happ is also inducing a lot more contact than usual, as his strikeout numbers have gone from a 7.6 K/9 last season to a 5.0 this year.
As for Abreu, he sports a .356 wOBA with a .261 ISO and a 133 wRC+ against lefties this season. He’s been crushing the ball this month as well, with five of his eight hits going for extra bases in eight games.
Save Big by Drafting
Kyle Lewis, Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Dodgers, $3,100 — Lewis continues to be dirt cheap on DraftKings despite posting double-digit fantasy points in three of his last six games. He’s averaging 8.6 DKFP in that span, which includes a double, a home run and three RBI. Tonight, he’ll face Julio Urias ($8,700), who has been a real mixed bag on the mound in 2021. Since last season, Lewis has a .359 wOBA, a .230 ISO and a 134 wRC+ against lefties. The very little you have to spend on Lewis makes this a worthwhile value for one of your outfield spots.
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