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MLB Cheat Sheet: DraftKings Fantasy Baseball DFS Picks, Predictions, Betting Odds for September 2

Steve Buchanan breaks down Thursday’s DraftKings MLB slate with pitching and hitting analysis, odds, lines and prop bets.

Only five games scheduled for Thursday night, beginning at 7:10 p.m. ET. Let’s take a look at how we can make some money.

Follow me on Twitter or you’re not allowed to read this article. @SBuchanan24

DraftKings Sportsbook Game Notes

Biggest Moneyline Favorite

Note: This section highlights the pitcher whose team is the largest favorite on DraftKings Sportsbook.

Editor's Note: Marlins SP Sandy Alcantara will start tonight’s game vs. the Mets.

Carlos Carrasco, $8,000, New York Mets (-210) vs. Miami Marlins (+175) — It’s only a five-game slate so I knew the pickings were going to be slim but I can’t say I’m all that excited about this Mets team being the biggest favorite. Yes, they’re taking on the Marlins but it’s not like they’ve performed well against this team. The Mets are 4-6 against them this season while averaging 2.8 runs per game. Not exactly a ringing endorsement, if you ask me. To that end, the Mets have performed very well as home favorites on the moneyline this season, going 33-18 in that scenario. As road underdogs, the Marlins are just 18-37.

As for Carrasco, this is his seventh start of the season and we finally saw him go deep into a game his last time out. Coming into his last start against the Giants, Carrasco didn’t see past the fifth inning in five straight games. He threw seven solid innings, allowing just two runs on three hits and striking out five. He’s faced the Marlins once already, going 4 13 innings giving up two runs on five hits with five strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings. On paper, this is a great spot for Carrasco against a weak Marlins offense but his 5.04 FIP is worrisome. I’m not exactly keen on backing him at such a large number despite the matchup. For whatever reason, this Mets offense cannot figure out the Marlins pitching staff and that’s too much to worry about for a -210 favorite.

Highest Projected Total

Atlanta Braves (-160; 6.5 runs) at Colorado Rockies (+140; 5.5 runs) 12.5 runs — It’s almost comical to see such a massive total of 12.5 runs, with a -115 line on the over. A ton of runs are expected and people are thinking MOAR!!!!! Amazingly, the Rockies are one of the worst teams in the league at hitting the over, doing so 44.2% of the time overall and only 44.4% of the time at home (quite shocking, honestly). The Braves hit the over 49.6% overall but only 40.9% on the road, which is tied for the worst in the league.

Chi Chi Gonzalez ($5,100) will be taking the hill for the Rockies tonight and is a huge reason why the Braves have a team total of 6.5 runs. Unlike most of his teammates in the rotation Gonzalez gets wrecked at home and on the road. His numbers across the board are putrid as his 6.08 ERA is accompanied by a 5.30 FIP and a 1.6 HR/9. He doesn’t strikeout anyone either, heavily relying on contact for outs. SPOILER ALERT! The outs don’t come often. His 5.1 K/9 through 94 2/3 innings is currently the second-lowest mark of his career, as he usually overs in the 6.5 to 7.0 range. Righties have been the biggest issue for him, posting a 6.07 FIP, a .397 wOBA and a 2.1 HR/9 against them.

Weather Notes

No weather concerns!

Splits to Start

Pitchers vs. Left-Handed Batters

Worst vs. LHB, wOBA, FIP
Keegan Thompson, .333, 6.07
Zach Thompson, .343, 4.68
Chi Chi Gonzalez, .343, 4.59

Best vs. LHB, wOBA, FIP
Mike Minor, .319, 3.07
Eduardo Rodriguez, .357, 3.84
Triston McKenzie, .296, 4.03

Pitchers vs. Right-Handed Batters

Worst vs. RHB, wOBA, FIP
Chi Chi Gonzalez, .397, 6.07
Triston McKenzie, .280, 5.26
Mitch Keller, .370, 5.11

Best vs. RHB, wOBA, FIP
Zach Thompson, .225, 3.27
Eduardo Rodriguez, .328, 3.40
Shane McClanahan, .307, 3.47

Lineup Starters

Pitcher to Build Around

Shane McClanahan, Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox at $10,100 — With the Red Sox dealing with a massive COVID outbreak, this is a team to attack right now. McClanahan dealt with them when they were fully healthy once already, spinning six solid innings, allowing just one run on four hits with seven strikeouts and 25.9 DKFP. The bottom half of the Red Sox lineup is almost unrecognizable and was a big reason why Drew Rasmussen breezed through it in four innings last night. They also will be without one of their best hitters against lefties in Xander Bogaerts, as he produced a positive test.

If the Red Sox run out the same lineup as last night, which is very possible, they’ll have six hitters with an ISO of .154 or less, three hitters with a wRC+ less than 49, and four hitters with K% of at least 21% against lefties. So yeah, give me McClanahan.

Stud Hitter to Pay For

Austin Riley, Atlanta Braves at Colorado Rockies, $5,600 — I mentioned the awful numbers that Gonzalez has against righties and that’s where I’ll be targeting some of my bats for tonight. Riley has cemented himself in the cleanup spot for the Braves and should have ample opportunities to cash in on some RBI tonight. The numbers for Gonzalez against righties get even worse at home this season, where he has a .401 wOBA, a 5.42 FIP and a 1.57 HR/9. Riley and the rest of the Braves are going to be chalky but I don’t want to miss out of getting a piece of this club on such a short slate.

Save Big by Drafting

Colin Moran, Pittsburgh Pirates at Chicago Cubs, $3,400 — Moran is riding a six-game hitting streak currently as he enters this matchup against Keegan Thompson ($5,600). While the hitting streak is great, Moran is doing the bare minimum to hang onto it, logging just one hit in five of those six games. With that said, Thompson has some really poor numbers against lefties this season with a .333 wOBA and a 6.07 FIP, which is the highest of amongst all starters tonight. Moran missed a good chunk of the season and hasn’t hit for power like we’ve seen in the past but his .345 wOBA and 117 wRC+ against righties is solid for someone at just $3,400 on a slate where value is scarce.

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