Happy Hump Day! We’ve got an 11-game main DraftKings MLB slate tonight with plenty of fun matchups everywhere, like the Chicago Cubs taking on the Los Angeles Dodgers. There are also a lot of exciting bats at a low cost, and some pitchers with great value. With so much variety, this should be a fun slate to play.
Let’s go position-by-position and break down everything you’ll need to know to set your DraftKings lineups.
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Freddy Peralta, Milwaukee Brewers at Philadelphia Phillies, $9,500 - There might not be a better pitcher out there who has less buzz than Peralta. All this guy’s done is post an insane 40.1% strikeout rate coupled with a 27.5% hard-hit rate. He faces a Phillies team that is 21st in wOBA over the past two weeks and is really struggling at the dish. The strikeout upside here is massive, and I don’t think he gives up too many hits and runs, either.
JT Brubaker, Pittsburgh Pirates at San Diego Padres, $6,900 - You may not want to hear this, but Brubaker is a good pitcher. Folks have been running from this truth. The fact is, his 2.63 ERA is no fluke, considering he’s only around a run off his expected ERA and has solid contact numbers. His whiff rate is in the top quarter of the league and his strikeout rate is above average, making him a strong play at this price against a Padres team that is really not seeing the ball well at all at the moment and doesn’t scare you past the fourth spot.
Sean Murphy, Oakland Athletics vs. Toronto Blue Jays, $4,300 - There aren’t a ton of high-priced catchers in great spots, but Murphy can be considered one of them. He’s averaging roughly three more DKFP per game off of left-handed pitchers this season, and faces a walking disaster in Robbie Ray ($7,200), whose expected ERA of 4.69 indicates he’s been rather lucky, and so does the fact that hitters are scorching the ball off of him. You can get the third or fourth guy in this Athletics order at a fantastic price.
William Contreras, Atlanta Braves at Washington Nationals, $3,000 - The youngster still sits down here in pricing because the good folks at DraftKings are taking a wait-and-see approach, but I recommend pouncing early before this talented rookie is pushing the $4K range. William Contreras, the younger brother of Willson, has put up 16 DKFP in his first two games this season, reaching four times in eight plate appearances. He’s also risen from eighth to seventh in the order in just one game, so perhaps there’s even some upward mobility here.
DJ LeMahieu, New York Yankees vs. Houston Astros, $5,400 - Don’t look now, but one of the best hitters in baseball over the past few years is heating up. LeMahieu gets Luis Garcia ($8,000) and his pedestrian .221 xBA, and I think the man who has posted two performances of 14 DKFP or more over the last three games stays hot against a righty, a split where he owns a 117 wRC+.
Josh Naylor, Cleveland Indians vs. Kansas City Royals, $3,300 - Naylor is red hot right now with a homer, a double and four RBIs over his last two games, and should tee off on Brady Singer ($5,500), who is nursing a heel injury and may not be himself. The Indians’ offense is a scoring runs in bunches at the moment and is projected for around four runs here. I think we’ll see quite a few more here against a pitcher due for regression in Singer.
Nick Solak, Texas Rangers at Minnesota Twins, $4,300 - Solak is one of my favorite hitters, blending consistent contact and great at-bats with pop and speed. Things haven’t gone so well for him lately, but he will be happy to see a lefty on the mound, considering he’s averaged 10.3 DKFP against southpaws. Lewis Thorpe ($4,000) has allowed hard contact a ridiculous 42.9% clip and I will be attacking him.
David Fletcher, Los Angeles Angels vs. Tampa Bay Rays, $3,400 - As a contact guy, Fletcher will give you a decent floor, going nine straight games with at least five DKFP. He will draw Ryan Yarbrough ($7,900) as the probable long-man out of the bullpen, who just gave up nine hits to the Astros. He’s a pitch-to-contact lefty, which should be the perfect type of guy to target against for the bat-to-ball master Fletcher.
Gio Urshela, New York Yankees vs. Houston Astros, $4,200 - I’m going back to the Yankees here, with an implied total of five runs by DraftKings Sportsbook. Urshela should be locked into the fourth spot in the order, and he has six hard-hit balls (95+ mph) in the past three games despite not seeing the results at the plate. He should be a big part of another big night offensively for New York.
Starlin Castro, Washington Nationals vs. Atlanta Braves, $2,900 - It’s not always the wisest idea going against Max Fried ($6,300), but given that it’s his first start back off the IL, and that the Braves’ bullpen has had its issues this year, I’m not too afraid. Castro hits right in the heart of the Nationals’ order, and rides in on a three-game hitting streak. Castro also sees a 15% boost in wOBA against left-handed pitchers, which might make him a steal at under $3K.
Trea Turner, Washington Nationals vs. Atlanta Braves, $4,700 - I’m going back to the Nats here against Fried, because Turner has been exceptional against southpaws. Despite the clear disadvantage he has when it comes to being able to steal against lefties, he’s put up a ridiculous 16.1 DKFP per game against them this season, even though he sees a dip in wOBA in the split. Plus, I’m not too confident Fried goes that deep or looks that great.
Isiah Kiner-Falefa, Texas Rangers at Minnesota Twins, $4,200 - Like Solak, Kiner-Falefa is also in a good spot here against a bad and inexperienced starter in Thorpe, and has been one of the most reliable fantasy shortstops in baseball. Despite the great matchup, he’s priced down due to his lineup position, which should be seventh against a lefty. No reason to worry, though, his wOBA is 5% better against southpaws. He’s a great building block with a high floor.
Giancarlo Stanton, New York Yankees vs. Houston Astros, $4,700 - I’m going back to yet another Yankee here, because if we’ve learned one thing over the past five years of playing fantasy baseball, it’s to ride Giancarlo Stanton while he’s hot. That’s exactly what we’ve got here, a Stanton who has hit a ridiculous five balls at 107 mph off the bat or more over the past two games, including three in Monday’s win. The Yankees have one of the best implied totals on the board and have to be considered here as a stack. Stanton should lead it off.
Andrew Benintendi, Kansas City Royals vs. Cleveland Indians, $2,500 - The Red Sox legend has hit his way back up the order to the second spot, and should remain there in a big game against Shane Bieber ($10,400). Because of the matchup, and perhaps some skepticism, Benintendi is rather cheap here. Given this ridiculous price, and the fact he should step to the plate five times, I have to recommend him here. He’s reached four times in his last 10 plate appearances and has some monster games to his name over the past two weeks.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jetsfan196) 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.
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