MLB DFS: DraftKings & FanDuel Main Slate Strategy Overview & Live Show Link – Monday 7/24/23

The Monday evening main slate looks ripe with scoring upside at the plate on both DraftKings and FanDuel. The board includes only a handful of reliable high-end pitchers, of the 16 options there are four or five who would fall into that category while the remaining pitchers range from flawed, inexperienced, and unreliable to plain bad. Getting to a mix of the top end of the pitching board with a broader pool of hitting combinations covering a wide range of potential outcomes at the plate should be the correct approach to lineup building tonight, it is a day where things will be won and lost with outbursts at the plate.

Don’t miss our Suggested Stacks feature and our Power Index for more on the top opportunities at the plate tonight.

Join us at 4:00ET for a rundown on today’s slate:

Note: All analysis is written utilizing available projected lineups as of the early morning, pay close attention to confirmed lineups and adjust accordingly. This article is posted and updated as it is written, so if a game has not been filled in, check back in a few minutes. Update notes are provided as lineups are confirmed to the best of our ability. Still, lineup changes are not typically updated as lock approaches, so stay tuned to official news for any late changes.

MLB DFS: Game by Game Main Slate Overview – 7/24/23

Colorado Rockies (+137/4.34) @ Washington Nationals (-149/5.27)

The slate opens with a matchup between the lousy Rockies and mediocre Nationals that has the hometown Washington D.C. squad strongly favored. The Nationals will have southpaw Patrick Corbin on the mound, the veteran lefty has a 4.89 ERA and 4.49 xFIP with a 15.7% strikeout rate this season, he has not been a reliable starter for some time but there could be a modicum of potential in a matchup against the worst team in baseball for run creation against left-handed pitching. For just $7,300/$7,600, Corbin will be taking on a team with a 73 WRC+ and a highly targetable 27.7% strikeout rate against lefties this season. The Rockies do have a respectable .170 ISO collectively in the split, and Corbin is a somewhat homer-happy pitcher, but there is potential for the starter to have one of his better outings of the season on a short slate at a cheap price and what will likely be relatively low popularity tonight. On the other side, the Rockies’ low-end lineup includes only a few truly targetable bats, with others that mostly come along for the ride in full stacks. Jurickson Profar is a member of the latter group, despite occupying the Rockies’ leadoff role all season, Profar has created runs 22% worse than average and is slashing just .243/.323/.376 with seven home runs and one stolen base. Kris Bryant is playable with an 8.27 in our home run model, the former star is having another down year that was partly marred by injuries, he is slashing .251/.338/.379 with a .128 ISO and eight home runs and has created runs 15% worse than average but costs just $4,600/$2,800 against Corbin. Ryan McMahon has been the Rockies’ best hitter through much of the season, the lefty is slashing .252/.336/.453 with a .201 ISO and 15 home runs, unfortunately for Colorado that drops to .217/.272/.368 with a .151 ISO, 58 WRC+, and just three of the 15 home runs against same-handed pitching. McMahon costs $4,500/$2,900 and is difficult to leave out of stacks of this lineup even when the team faces a lefty, there are simply no good replacement options even with his downturn in the split. CJ Cron has premium power potential, he has hit 11 home runs in 211 plate appearances this season and has a .224 ISO with a 92 WRC+ while barrelling 16.3% of his batted-ball events. Elias Diaz is having a good year at the plate as the team’s primary catcher, he is playable positionally and for value. Randal Grichuk is almost certain to finish the season on a different team – the Yankees seem a likely candidate to acquire the outfielder – he is having a good year at the dish, Grichuk is slashing .302/.363/.479 with six home runs and a .177 ISO in 237 opportunities after missing the first third of the year. Ezequiel Tovar has been mostly disappointing, he has created runs 25% worse than average this season with nine home runs and four stolen bases. Alan Trejo and Brenton Doyle round out the lineup in low-end form, Doyle has been playable for counting stats in spots and can be used in stacks of Rockies, but he is low-priority on the slate as a whole. The right-handed rookie outfielder has seven home runs and 14 stolen bases in 215 plate appearances but has created runs 50% behind the curve.

Washington will be facing right-handed opener Jake Bird who will start what is expected to be a true bullpen game for the Rockies with targetable righty Karl Kauffmann expected to see a few innings, assuming he is called up prior to the game. Neither pitcher nor anything else that wanders out of the Colorado bullpen, is worth rostering for MLB DFS purposes. The Nationals lineup is carrying a 5.27-run implied total in Vegas, which is a good indication of the pitching situation for the Rockies, Washington’s active roster has created runs four percent worse than league average overall this season, it takes a good matchup to elevate their totals to these levels. CJ Abrams is up to 95 WRC+ with 10 home runs and 19 stolen bases in a nice turnaround after scuffling through the first half from the bottom of the lineup. Abrams has been good in the leadoff role and is a highly regarded talent who was one of the primary returns in the Juan Soto trade, the Nationals need him to continue his ascendance to competence. Abrams is still cheap at $3,600/$3,000 at shortstop, he is on the board as part of a bad lineup in a very good spot. Lane Thomas has 16 home runs, 12 stolen bases, a .198 ISO, and has created runs 23% better than average this season, he has been the one player doing everything well for the Nationals in 2023 and he costs just $4,800/$3,500. Thomas leads the team with an 8.35 in our home run model, he should be part of the majority of Nationals stacks that are built for this slate. Jeimer Candelario is cheap for $4,000/$3,200 at third base, he has 15 home runs and a .220 ISO with a 116 WRC+ and has been the team’s top power bat this year. Candelario has a 21.3% strikeout rate with an 8.2% walk rate that is not great but leads this team, the switch-hitting third baseman can be included in stacks of Nationals. Joey Meneses is slashing .278/.320/.391 with a 92 WRC+ and six home runs, Keibert Ruiz is a good option behind the plate for MLB DFS, he has good potential for power and has hit 11 home runs with a .397 slugging percentage but a .454 xSLG. Ruiz is inexpensive at $3,800/$2,800 tonight. Dominic Smith has created runs 33% worse than average as a regular over 382 plate appearances this season, he has five home runs and is slashing .272/.338/.355 with a .084 ISO. Smith ahs a 29.3% hard-hit rate with 5.2% barrels but he is good at putting the ball in play given a 14.9% strikeout rate which is on-brand for this squad. The projected lineup has a terrific 16.5% strikeout rate collectively for the season, Ruiz leads the lineup with a 9.3% strikeout rate, the top four hitters are in the low 20% range with Thomas carrying the highest strikeout rate at 25.6%. Veteran lefty Corey Dickerson has two home runs with a 67 WRC+ in 132 opportunities, he joins Luis Garcia and Alex Call at the bottom of the lineup as mix-in values.

Play: Nationals bats/stacks, Patrick Corbin value (yeah, this should go well…), a few Rockies righty power darts are OK

Update Notes:

Kansas City Royals (+173/3.61) @ Cleveland Guardians (-190/5.00)

Kansas City takes their traveling tour of ineptitude to Cleveland to face a Guardians squad that is pulling in a strong number in Vegas as -190 favorites with a 5.0-run implied team total. The Royals will be facing high-end left-handed rookie Logan Allen who is a playable pitching option on this slate. Allen has made 13 starts and thrown 67.1 innings with a crisp 3.21 ERA and a more realistic 3.94 xFIP. The lefty has induced an 11.7% swinging-strike rate with a 26.5% CSW% on the season and has allowed just a 2.05% home run rate while striking out 24.3% and walking 8.6%, he has been a strong option on several MLB DFS slates already this season and costs a fair $8,700/$9,400 that will likely serve to keep his popularity somewhat in check in what has been an excellent matchup. Kansas City’s active roster has a collective 93 WRC+ with a 24.8% strikeout rate and just a .148 ISO against lefties this season, numbers that are bolstered by some small samples. Allen is a top-five pitching option on this slate, his primary flaw has been a lack of depth in recent outings but he went 5.0 in his most recent appearance and should have a ceiling between five and six innings. Maikel Garcia is slated to lead off for the Royals, he has a 93 WRC+ over 274 plate appearances with just a 4.7% barrel rate but a sturdy 51.6% hard-hit rate. Garcia has three home runs and 14 stolen bases and is slashing an effective .279/.330/.377 that plays in the leadoff spot. Bobby Witt Jr. has 16 home runs and 28 stolen bases and has been better for MLB DFS purposes than for actual run creation this season at just a 96 WRC+ given his lowly .292 on-base percentage. MJ Melendez slots in with seven home runs in a disappointing year, the cheap lefty slugger is not in a great spot in this one, he loses quite a lot in splits against same-handed pitching. Sal Perez is the better option in the middle of the lineup, Perez is cheap for his ceiling at catcher, he has major power potential on any given slate with 16 home runs on the board already this season. Matt DuffyEdward OlivaresMichael Massey, Drew Waters, and Dairon Blanco are all below average for run creation, as is the entire Kansas City projected lineup. Duffy has an OK triple-slash but only one home run and an 88 WRC+ in 128 plate appearances, he has multi-position eligibility and costs just $2,100 on both sites as a playable last-man from this stack. Olivares offers moderate power and speed in a highly unreliable package, Massey has OK left-handed pop with seven home runs in 251 plate appearances overall, Waters has four long balls in 161 chances and Blanco sits at 89 WRC+ in 60 opportunities. The Royals are a very low-priority stack in this matchup.

Cleveland’s lineup has come to life a bit in recent weeks, Steven KwanJosh Bell, and David Fry all now join Jose Ramirez and Josh Naylor as above-average run creators, though Fry has only made 71 plate appearances. Kwan and Bell are keys to the Guardians’ offense, Kwan is a potentially elite table-setter when things are going well and Bell has premium power as a switch-hitter, their underperformance was a big part of the team’s problems in the first two-thirds of the season. Kwan is up to .275/.346/.378 and has four home runs with 15 stolen bases and a 103 WRC+, he needs to continue to push his on-base percentage but costs just $4,000/$3,000 atop a stack with a five-run total. Amed Rosario is trying to get going as well, he has three home runs and nine stolen bases but just an 81 WRC+ with a .095 ISO overall this season. Rosario is slashing .260/.302/.355 and strikes out at just a 19.1% clip but he has not made much premium contact this year with just a three percent barrel rate. Rosario is a playable part at shortstop for a fair price on both sites, he helps average down the cost of the team’s star third baseman who comes next in the lineup. Jose Ramirez has a 128 WRC+ and 14 home runs, Naylor is outpacing him in both categories with 15 long balls and a 129 mark for run creation. Both players are essentially must-haves when stacking Guardians hitters, there have been very few rallies in Cleveland this season that did not include one or both of the sluggers. Naylor is having a great year after a cold start, he is slashing .307/.346/.511 with a .204 ISO and has a 43.3% hard-hit rate with just a 16% strikeout rate. Bell slots as the third man in the power core, he has 11 home runs and a 42.7% hard-hit rate with a 9.8% barrel rate for just $3,000/$2,800 at first base but he creates a decision with Naylor playing the same first base and nothing else on DraftKings. Fry slots in with three home runs and two steals in his small sample, he costs just $2,300 on both sites with eligibility at catcher and in the outfield on DraftKings and duplicated catcher-first base eligibility on FanDuel. Second baseman Andres Gimenez has been coming on at the plate, he has nine home runs and 15 steals with a 94 WRC+ on the season and costs $3,900/$2,800 at a premium position. Gimenez is a key part of Guardians stacks, he should be a focus play when rostering Cleveland hitters. Myles Straw and Gabriel Arias round out the projected lineup with a 74 and 69 WRC+ respectively.

Play: Logan Allen, Guardians bats/stacks

Update Notes:

Seattle Mariners (-102/4.02) @ Minnesota Twins (-106/4.06)

Last week’s matchups between the Mariners and Twins from Seattle were highly targeted spots for pitching, to mixed results, throughout the series. The two high-strikeout squads will renew their battle tonight, this time from Minnesota, with the Twins featuring righty Kenta Maeda in a matchup against Mariners ace Luis Castillo. Both pitchers are projecting well in our model, Castillo tops the board in our projections for $10,800/$10,600 while Maeda lands fifth by projected fantasy points for a discounted $8,400/$8,600 in what should be a fairly popular spot. In nine starts and 42.1 innings this season, Maeda has a 5.10 ERA but a 3.76 xFIP that is more true to form. The righty has a top-end 28.6% strikeout rate with a 6.9% walk rate and he has induced a 13.9% swinging-strike rate on the season. He has allowed too much premium contact to this point, with an 8.8% barrel rate and 50.4% hard hits on 92.4 mph of exit velocity but has not been burnt badly for home runs with just a 2.86% home run rate in the small sample. Maeda struck out nine of 21 hitters while allowing two runs on a home run and three total hits in 6.1 innings in this matchup last week in Seattle, while that is in no way predictive it certainly at least supports the idea that he has a clear path to success in this spot tonight at cheap pricing, he should be popular but highly playable on both DraftKings and FanDuel. Castillo is in a similar situation but his high prices and some clunky results for home run power in recent games may keep the field somewhat at bay. Castillo allowed a pair of long balls in his six-inning three-run start against the Twins last week but he struck out 11 of 26 hitters in the game to post a dominant fantasy score anyway. The pitcher has given up two home runs in a ridiculous five of his last six starts, but he has been relatively good for the rest of those games and only had one truly bad outing in which he allowed four earned runs and six overall in six innings to the elite Rays. For the season, the terrific righty has a 3.04 ERA and 3.65 xFIP with a 27.7% strikeout rate, a 6.3% walk rate, and a truly outstanding 15.4% swinging-strike rate. Castillo is an excellent option that should be targeted beyond the field’s current projections for popularity.

The bats on both sides are playable, but Vegas has them relegated to totals of just 4.02 and 4.06 in a matchup that should have strikeout-shaped holes punched in each lineup throughout the game. Seattle should have JP Crawford in the leadoff role as usual, the shortstop is slashing .258/.364/.393 with a 120 WRC+ in 393 plate appearances and is a decent correlated scoring play when looking at stacks of Mariners. Julio Rodriguez has 14 home runs and 23 stolen bases and is at a 102 WRC+ in 436 chances this season. In 124 more plate appearances last year he had 28 home runs and 25 stolen bases with a 146 mark for run creation, so it is fair to say Rodriguez has been off of expected pace, but he is still a worthwhile bat and a near must when stacking Mariners at just $4,900/$3,500. Eugenio Suarez has 14 home runs with a .163 ISO and 104 WRC+ in a return to form that has seen his power output increase and triple-slash dip in recent weeks. Suarez is a masher at the plate, he is a good buy at $2,900 at third base on both sites and has a 12.3% barrel rate with a 46.1% hard-hit rate for the season. Teoscar Hernandez follows with a 15% barrel rate and 50% hard-hit rate that have led to 16 home runs in his 412 plate appearances. Mike Ford joins the party from the left side, he has a surprising 11 home runs in just 121 plate appearances with a star-caliber .345 ISO that is wildly unrealistic. Ty France has been lousy this season, his downturn with the hit tool and power have been a surprising part of the Mariners dip in quality this year. Cal Raleigh has power behind the plate but a hefty strikeout rate, Taylor Trammell rejoins the lineup for $2,000 on both sites, he has a bit of potential for power and speed but has yet to land at the MLB level in a few chances, and Kolten Wong has been lousy at the plate this year. The Twins side of the coin has Carlos Correa atop the lineup, his 98 WRC+ is a disappointment, as is his .232/.308/.409 triple-slash, but he has 12 home runs and a .177 ISO with 10.4% barrels and a 43.8% hard-hit rate for $4,400/$2,900 at shortstop. Edouard Julien has nine home runs and a .233 ISO in a strong breakout over 189 plate appearances, the rookie second baseman has a 16.2% barrel rate and 43.8% hard-hit rate for $3,300/$3,200 but has also struck out at a 32.3% clip that supports upside for Castillo. Alex Kirilloff joins fellow lefties Max Kepler and Matt Wallner in the heart of the lineup. Kirilloff has eight home runs in 241 tries, Kepler has 14 in 267, and Wallner has hit one in 50 chances at the MLB level but had 11 in 305 plate appearances in AAA prior to his call-up. The trio has decent power potential but they land at just 3.38, 5.68, and 3.30 in our home run model against Castillo, despite the starter’s recent homer hiccups. Trevor Larnach has six home runs with a .211/.311/.388 triple-slash this year, Kyle Farmer has six home runs in 223 plate appearances and has created runs at 99% of league average this season, the cheap infielder had 14 home runs last year and 16 the year before and is a viable sneaky power option. Christian Vazquez is an infrequent contributor, as is Michael A. Taylor, they round out the Twins lineup with targetable strikeout rates.

Play: Luis Castillo, Kenta Maeda, a few contrarian/hedge stacks on either side

Update Notes:

Cincinnati Reds (+102/4.72) @ Milwaukee Brewers (-110/4.87)

Another contest that lands close to a pick’em situation in Vegas has the Reds at a 4.72-run implied total and the Brewers carrying a 4.87 mark as slight favorites at home. Milwaukee will have righty Colin Rea on the mound, he has made 16 starts and thrown just 85.1 innings with a 4.64 ERA and 4.50 xFIP, and a limited 19.5% strikeout rate. Rea has allowed a 42.3% hard-hit rate with 90.2 mph of exit velocity and a 3.90% home run rate that is pushing power potential in the direction of the Reds hitters in this matchup. Rea has been moderately effective in spots this season, he is not entirely without potential on this slate but there is not much statistical support for the argument overall and certainly not enough to overwhelm the projections that are landing on the Cincinnati side of the matchup. The Reds will be starting a mediocre righty of their own in Graham Ashcraft, who has a 5.77 ERA and 4.87 xFIP this season. Ashcraft has struck out merely 15.8% of opposing hitters while also walking 9.3% and allowing a 3.34% home run rate on 40.1% hard hits. The two low-end pitching options project within .05 fantasy points of one another in our model, landing them in the lower-middle part of what becomes an ugly pitching slate quickly as one scans the list of options. Neither pitcher is out of play, but neither is at all reliable. Rea costs $6,500/$7,100 and Ashcraft is a $6,800/$8,000 option, the price makes Ashcraft on FanDuel the worst choice out of the four possibilities for these two pitchers, they are playable value parts at best in other situations, but the odds and our model are with the hitters.

Elly De La Cruz leads off for the Reds at $5,900/$3,700 with eligibility at third base and shortstop. The burgeoning star’s prices have come down somewhat on both sites, he was unfairly overpriced in recent games and is now more in line with the 99 WRC+ he has produced over 174 plate appearances so far in the Show. De La Cruz does everything at amazingly high levels on the field, he has hit five home runs and stolen 17 bases already but he is not flawless and does have a 31.6% strikeout rate while barreling only 4.7% of his batted-ball events. TJ Friedl slots in second ahead of Matt McLain, both players have been strong options at the plate this year. Friedl has a 113 WRC+ with 16 stolen bases and seven home runs in his 314 opportunities, McLain was an immediate star on arrival in Cincinnati, he is slashing .305/.371/.528 with a .224 ISO and 137 WRC+ to lead the team. Jake Fraley has 14 home runs and 16 stolen bases, totals that are very on-brand for this lineup that is filled with double-digit home run and stolen base totals. Fraley is a good lefty option against Rea, he has a 12.17 in our home run model to sit fourth in a lineup ripe with power potential in the matchup. Fraley costs $4,600/$3,300 in the outfield despite his excellent output this season. Jonathan India is fairly priced at $4,500/$3,500 at second base, he has both power and speed and has been putting up another strong season, though his WRC+ mark dipped to 99 recently. Joey Votto has a 13.53 in our home run model, he sits second overall, one spot ahead of De La Cruz and a spot behind rookie Christian Encarnacion-Strand, who leads the team with a 15.50 as our overall home run pick for the day. Votto has eight long balls in 102 plate appearances with a 112 WRC+ but is below the Mendoza line, Encarnacion-Strand has one home run in his 24 chances so far and is slashing .304/.333/.435 in the tiny sample but was a star all season at AAA prior to his promotion. Tyler Stephenson and Will Benson are good options to close out the lineup, Benson is having a very good start to his season at .286/.390/.521 with six home runs and nine stolen bases in just 164 chances. On the Brewers side, Christian Yelich is a star leadoff hitter for $5,300/$3,800, he has 14 home runs and 21 stolen bases with a WRC+ mark 32% better than the league average. William Contreras and Willy Adames have power at catcher and shortstop, Contreras is the better overall hitter at .269/.345/.438 with a 114 WRC+ while Adames has 17 home runs to Contreras’ 10 but just an 89 WRC+ and a low-end triple-slash. Jesse Winker has one home run and a .194/.316/.242 triple-slash, he is wholly unreliable in the cleanup role. Andruw Monasterio has been productive over 98 plate appearances this season, he is cheap with multi-position eligibility ahead of rookie Sal Frelick, who is a good option for left-handed pop but has made just eight plate appearances in the Show to this point. Frelick costs $3,000/$2,600 in the outfield, he is a highly regarded hit-and-speed option. Owen MillerBrice Turang, and Joey Wiemer round out the lineup. Miller has been OK with five home runs, 13 steals, and a decent triple-slash but has created runs 12% behind the curve, Turang and Wiemer have been worse though Wiemer has 12 home runs and 11 stolen bases in his 322 plate appearances.

Play: Reds bats/stacks enthusiastically, Brewers bats/stacks

Update Notes:

Texas Rangers (-109/4.60) @ Houston Astros (+101/4.49)

The Rangers and Astros will do battle in Houston in yet another closely aligned game on the board in Vegas. The Rangers are facing righty Brandon Bielak who has a 3.46 ERA but a 4.72 xFIP with a 9.4% walk rate and just 18% strikeouts over 65 innings in his 11 outings. Bielak has yielded an 11.1% barrel rate and 48.5% hard hits with a 3.60% home run rate so far this season, he has not been consistent at avoiding the long ball or hard hits throughout his opportunities in the Show but there is a touch of potential when he is facing lesser opposition. The Rangers are carrying a 4.60-run implied total that seems like it should be a half-run or so higher in this matchup, but the team is without star shortstop Corey Seager who suffered an injury over the weekend. Second baseman Marcus Semien has a 9.14 in our home run model today, he has hit 14 on the season with a .175 ISO and has created runs 16% better than average for $5,800/$3,700. Travis Jankowski has stolen 15 bases and provided a sturdy triple-slash but he is no Corey Seager in the second spot in the lineup. Nathaniel Lowe has 11 home runs and a 129 WRC+ in 448 plate appearances and helps offset the pricing of star teammates at just $3,800/$3,400 at first base. Adolis Garcia has a team-leading 13.06 in our home run model with 24 on the board already this season. Josh Jung is right behind him at 10.34 in the model and with 19 for the season. Jung has a 122 WRC+ in a strong breakout but he costs just $4,600/$3,500 at third base. Jonah Heim is an All-Star catcher who has hit 14 home runs while slashing .282/.336/.486 with a .204 ISO this season, he cost just $4,400/$3,500 and can be played on both sites. Ezequiel Duran and Leody Taveras have been terrific from the bottom of the lineup all year, they have created runs 33% and 17% better than average with 13 and 11 home runs respectively. They will be joined by Robbie Grossman who costs just $2,400/$2,800 in the outfield as the team’s only player below average for run creation in the projected batting order at 81 WRC+.

The Astros have been rolling a bit lately and they are slated to see the return of superstar slugger Yordan Alvarez, who slots in fourth in the projected lineup. Houston is facing right-handed hurler Jon Gray who has had a mediocre season so far in 2023. Gray has made 18 starts and thrown 103.1 innings, pitching to a 3.31 ERA but a 4.47 xFIP and just a 19.8% strikeout rate that has dipped badly from the good 25.7% he posted last year and the 24.4% from the season before. Gray has induced an 11.6% swinging-strike rate that matches last year’s number and is better than his 2021 mark, but his CSW% has dipped by about three points to just 26.9%. The righty has still been good at keeping power in check, he has allowed a 3.10% home run rate with 6.1% barrels and 35.8% hard hits, for $8,700/$8,800 Gray projects as a playable option in an unsafe spot against the Astros. Mauricio Dubon was yesterday’s hero with a late home run, his fifth of the season, but he has been fairly low-end overall and has just an 85 WRC+ over 341 opportunities. Kyle Tucker lands second in the projected lineup, the star outfielder has 17 home runs and 18 stolen bases with a fantastic 144 WRC+ and is slashing a robust .302/.379/.514 with a .212 ISO and 48.7% hard hits. Alex Bregman has 16 home runs and a 114 WRC+ ahead of Alvarez, who checks in with 17 home runs that came in just 242 plate appearances prior to his injury. The lefty slugger has created runs 67% better than average and has an 18.8% barrel rate with a 55.7% hard-hit rate as one of baseball’s elite power hitters. Alvarez leads the Astros lineup with a 13.34 in our home run model. Jose Abreu has hit eight home runs and has a 77 WRC+ in 404 opportunities, Chas McCormick has 12 home runs and 11 stolen bases in 236 opportunities, he is clearly the better option in most stacks of Astros. McCormick is still cheap on DraftKings at $4,200/$3,600. Yainer Diaz has been very good in a breakout year, over 210 opportunities he is slashing .266/.286/.492 with 11 home runs and a 109 WRC+ and has played his way into the everyday lineup. Jeremy Pena and Martin Maldonado round out the projected batting order.

Play: Rangers bats/stacks, Astros bats/stacks, Jon Gray

Update Notes:

St. Louis Cardinals (-105/4.56) @ Arizona Diamondbacks (-115/4.67)

The matchup between the Cardinals and Diamondbacks in the desert looks like a good spot to source offensive output at the plate. The hometown Snakes will have rookie righty Ryne Nelson on the mound for his 21st start of the season. Nelson has a 4.82 ERA and 4.98 xFIP with a limited 16.1% strikeout rate and a 6.6% walk rate in 2023. The righty has allowed a 10.9% barrel rate with a 43.1% hard-hit rate and 3.52% home runs on 91.2 mph of exit velocity. Nelson has made some good starts this season, mixed in with a few total disasters. The righty most recently faced the Braves in Atlanta and allowed just two runs on three hits, though two of those were home runs while striking out five over seven innings. Nelson has that type of performance in him in this matchup in an any-given-slate sense, but he projects in the lower third of the board, as does his opponent. For $6,700/$7,000 Nelson is not anything more than a longshot dart on this slate. Brendan Donovan is the leadoff man for St. Louis in this matchup, he has 11 home runs and a .281/.368/.427 triple-slash as a good table-setter ahead of the team’s power core. Paul Goldschmidt has 16 home runs and a 131 WRC+ on the season. The 2022 NL MVP has a .283/.371/.466 triple-slash with 11.9% barrels and a 52.8% hard-hit rate, he is a strong option any day of the week. Lars Nootbaar has seven home runs and seven stolen bases, he has created runs 12% better than average and offers good pop and speed from the heart of the order for just $4,100/$3,100. Nolan Arenado is a star at third base, he has hit 21 home runs while slashing .291/.340/.523 with a .232 ISO and 132 WRC+ after being mostly dead through May. Tyler O’Neill has missed much of yet another season, when healthy he is a major source of power who also offers speed on the basepaths, he hit 34 home runs and stole 15 bases in his last full season in 2021 but made just 383 plate appearances with 14 of each last year and now sits at two of each over 117 opportunities this season. Nolan Gorman has major left-handed power at second base, he adds third base eligibility on FanDuel and has 20 home runs with a .246 ISO this season. Jordan WalkerPaul DeJong, and Andrew Knizner round out the projected Cardinals batting order, though Ivan Herrera would be a good option behind the plate as well. Walker has been the most productive hitter in that group in his 237 opportunities, he has a 117 WRC+ with nine home runs and four steals, DeJong has 13 home runs with a .189 ISO in 285 opportunities but just a 98 WRC+.

The Diamondbacks draw Adam Wainwright in his return to action after a stint on the injured list. Wainwright has been lousy all season and there were thoughts that he had pitched his last when the team first made the move to IL him for a spell, but he is back in play for $6,000 on either site for the believers. Wainwright has not given supporters much to hang their hat on this season, he has a 7.66 ERA and a 5.87 xFIP with just an 11% strikeout rate and a 5.6% swinging-strike rate. The former ace has yielded an 11.7% barrel rate with 35.4% hard hits and a 3.94% home run rate this season, he is not a recommended option in this spot, even with great prices for the name on the jersey, and Diamondbacks bats should be stacked against him. Geraldo Perdomo has a .279/.384/.414 triple-slash with a 120 WRC+ on the season, in 121 plate appearances in the leadoff role, Perdomo is slashing .284/.368/.343 with a 99 WRC+ but he has struck out just 10.7% of the time while walking at an 11.6% clip. Ketel Marte has hit 17 home runs and has a .226 ISO while creating runs 37% better than average and striking out just 16.7% of the time. Corbin Carroll strikes out at a 20.3% rate, the highest among the team’s top five hitters. The star outfielder has 21 home runs and 29 stolen bases and is appropriately expensive at $6,000/$4,100 in the third spot in the lineup. Christian Walker is an excellent buy at $5,400/$3,600 at first base, he has 20 home runs and an 18.3% strikeout rate this year and hit 36 long balls with just a 19.6% strikeout rate last season. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. dipped to just five home runs in a weird year last season but was still highly productive in his triple-slash and run-creation abilities, his power has come back in a big way after a trade from Toronto to Arizona, he has 15 home runs and a .209 ISO but has gone from 114 WRC+ with a .291/.343/.400 triple-slash to just 103 WRC+ with a .253/.303/.462, so there is a bit of bad with the good year over year. Jake McCarthy has stolen 22 bases but he is an unreliable option ahead of Emmanuel RiveraCarson Kelly, and Alek Thomas who are mix-in options late in the lineup. Rivera has displayed a good hit tool over his 195 opportunities but is nine percent below the average for run creation, Kelly is 72% worse than average in his limited 63 plate appearances, and Thomas sits 22% behind the curve over 211 chances.

Play: Cardinals bats/stacks, Diamondbacks bats/stacks

Update Notes:

Pittsburgh Pirates (+233/3.28) @ San Diego Padres (-260/5.35)

The Pirates and Padres square off in San Diego in a game that looks lopsided on the board in Vegas. San Diego is the biggest favorite of the day behind veteran righty Yu Darvish with a -260 and a 5.35-run implied total. Darvish is a strong option on today’s slate, he is one of two pitchers that anyone would regard as an ace over the past few seasons, Castillo being the other. Darvish has a 4.36 ERA and 3.76 xFIP over 97 innings in 17 starts this season and has struck out a healthy 25.9% of opposing hitters. The righty has an 8.1% walk rate and has allowed just 2.72% home runs on 6.1% barrels while inducing a good 11.2% swinging-strike rate and compiling a 29.4% CSW%. Darvish looks very similar to his numbers from last year, which were down a bit from 2021 but still very good. He will be facing a Pirates’ active roster that has a 98 WRC+ to rank 20th overall in the split against right-handed pitching. The team has a collective 23.1% strikeout rate but a decent .173 ISO in the split. Pittbsurgh’s projected batting order is helmed by Jack Suwinski who has 20 home runs with a .273 ISO and 126 WRC+ over 319 plate appearances but is slashing .223/.345/.496 with a 33.2% strikeout rate. Suwinski is a masher with a 19.1% barrel rate and 50.6% hard-hit mark for just $4,000/$3,200, he is a must when rostering Pirates stacks in a bad spot but there is a chance Darvish sends him back to the bench three times. Bryan Reynolds has 10 home runs and eight stolen bases with a 104 WRC+, Andrew McCutchen has 10 home runs with nine stolen bases and a 121 WRC+, the veteran outfielders have been similarly mid-level options this season, they are obvious plays when stacking Pirates and should not be skipped frequently. Carlos Santana is a switch-hitter with the memory of power but only nine home runs and a .153 ISO on 4.8% barrels and 35.7% hard hits this season. Henry Davis is a high-end rookie who has been successful with a 129 WRC+ over his first 118 plate appearances, he is affordable at $3,100/$2,900 in the outfield and adds catcher eligibility on FanDuel which is helpful when the team’s primary options all align in the outfield, which is the case on DraftKings. Jared Triolo is cheap at third base, he has an 82 WRC+ with a .288/.338/.315 triple-slash in his first 80 plate appearances. Tucupita MarcanoEndy Rodriguez, and Nick Gonzales round out the projected lineup, Rodriguez is a recently promoted premium prospect, he has a home run in his first 18 plate appearances, Gonzales is also a rookie but is not as highly regarded as Rodriguez or Davis, he has an 87 WRC+ over 92 plate appearances. The Pirates are a very low-priority stack in this matchup.

The Padres, on the other hand, are a high-priority option that ranks second by average fantasy point projections and third for home run potential on our stacks board. San Diego is facing rookie Quinn Priester who was another big promotion for the Pirates last week. Priester is a highly regarded pitching prospect who comes with major questions about his fastball’s effectiveness at this level, there are no questions about his plus-plus curveball however. Priester was not at all good in his first outing, giving up seven runs on seven hits, including two home runs while striking out only two and walking two against the Guardians. The good news in that start is that the righty was allowed to work 5.1 innings, which suggests that the team will not manage innings too carefully, in better matchups Priester will be on the board in the coming weeks, he projects in the middle of the board tonight for just $6,000/$6,800, he is an option for those who are not afraid to embrace heavy risk for a big discount on the mound on the single starter site and he is a viable SP2 option on the DraftKings slate. Priester is difficult to recommend with much enthusiasm after the initial disaster and when facing a lineup that includes stars like Fernando Tatis Jr.Juan SotoManny Machado, and Xander Bogaerts, but if he hits for anything approaching his projected total he will be an interesting value tonight if nothing else. Leadoff hitter Ha-Seong Kim will be the first challenge Priester faces, the infielder has a dozen home runs and 18 stolen bases in a fine season and has created runs 20% better than average but still costs just $4,200/$2,900 with multi-position eligibility. Tatis is a superstar who has 17 home runs and 15 stolen bases as an expensive outfielder, Soto has 19 home runs which ties Machado for the team lead, the outfielder outpaces Machado for run creation with a 153 to 113 advantage by WRC+ however. Both players are stars and both should be rostered with enthusiasm when prioritizing Padres. Bogaerts is a high-end shortstop slashing .263/.344/.403 with a 110 WRC+. Even in a bit of a down season in his triple-slash, the shortstop has been above average for run creation all season and has hit 10 home runs while stealing 11 bases and striking out at just an 18.3% clip. Jake Cronenworth costs $4,000/$2,700, he has been disappointing with just an 85 WRC+ this season. Luis Campusano slots in at catcher, he has two home runs in 37 plate appearances and costs just $2,400/$2,500 with a bit of power potential at the plate. Taylor Kohlwey costs $2,000 in the outfield on both sites, he is a 29-year-old non-prospect who has never reached the Show before a recent promotion. Trent Grisham rounds out the lineup, the left-handed outfielder has a 13.7% barrel rate with a 41.2% hard-hit rate on the season and has hit 10 home runs with 10 stolen bases while creating runs two percent better than average primarily from the last spot in the batting order. Grisham is a playable part and can be utilized as a wrap-around play for just $2,800/$2,700.

Play: Yu Darvish, Padres bats/stacks, Priester value darts in small low-expectation doses

Update Notes:

Toronto Blue Jays (+104/4.70) @ Los Angeles Dodgers (-113/4.91)

Toronto is in Los Angeles with a 4.70 run implied total in one more game that has expectations of a tough close battle on the board in Vegas. Los Angeles is carrying just a 4.91-run total at -113 in a matchup between home starter Michael Grove and visiting Jose Berrios. Grove has not been very good in his rookie season, over nine starts he has a 6.40 ERA and 4.41 xFIP with a 20.4% strikeout rate while allowing a 3.91% home run mark and 42.1% hard hits. Grove has had better strikeout marks through the minor leagues, but he has typically worked at an advanced age for the levels at which he found success, posting a 32.8% strikeout rate as a 25-year-old in AA, for example. Overall, Grove is not a highly regarded pitching prospect but he can find a bit of success at $6,300/$6,600 in a similar way that Priester would be on the board against the Padres. Grove projects in the lower third of the pitching board, he is several spots down from Berrios, who lands squarely in the middle of starting pitcher options for $9,200/$9,800. Given his projection and a terrible matchup, Berrios is not a high-priority pitcher on this slate. The righty has a 23.4% strikeout rate with a very good 3.39 ERA and 3.98 xFIP, he can be rostered in small doses but the Dodgers are a fairly elite bunch that do not strike out very much and Berrios has never been the most reliable pitcher available. He has improved on the home run issues that cropped up last season however, over 20 starts and 119.1 innings the righty has allowed just 2.66% home runs on 35.1% hard hits and 87.6 mph of exit velocity. Berrios is playable in a bad spot but is not one to chase at his price tag on both sites. The Dodgers are in play, the team has a fifth-ranked average fantasy point projection mark and they land sixth out of tonight’s 16 teams for home run potential, the Blue Jays are the better option though, they rank third for points and second for power against Grove.

Toronto’s batting order opens in style with George SpringerBo BichetteBrandon Belt, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. who are all fairly priced for their talent in this spot. Springer has 13 home runs and a matching stolen base total with a 108 WRC+ and just a 17.1% strikeout rate for $4,900/$3,300. Bichette is a star shortstop for just $5,100/$3,500, he has 16 home runs and a 127 WRC+ but just a .171 ISO with his .308/.339/.479 triple-slash. Belt has been excellent for run creation and leads the team with a 128 WRC+ over his 262 plate appearances. The lefty slugger has eight home runs and a .187 ISO with an 11.3% barrel rate and he remains cheap in a terrific spot in the batting order for just $3,100/$2,900 but he is back to being a decision with Guerrero slotting in at the same first base positional requirement on DraftKings, they can be played as a pair on FanDuel. Matt Chapman has a 17.8% barrel rate and a 59.1% hard-hit rate, both of which lead the team by a fairly wide margin. The third baseman has 12 home runs with a .262/.350/.456 triple-slash and 124 WRC+ over 406 plate appearances but he is a strikeout target at 27.1% as well. Whit Merrifield is a good hit-and-speed option for correlated scoring later in the lineup, Daulton Varsho has 12 home urns and 12 stolen bases but just a 73 WRC+ mark in 378 plate appearances, and the lineup closes with Alejandro Kirk and Kevin Kiermaier as playable mix-ins. On the Dodgers side things are typically obvious, with superstars Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman leading the way almost every day of the week. Betts has 27 homers with a .291 ISO and 154 WRC+ over 440 opportunities, he still has triple-position eligibility on FanDuel and lands at second base or in the outfield on DraftKings for a fair $6,500/$4,300. Freeman has 20 home runs and 12 stolen bases and has created runs 67% better than average. Will Smith and Max Muncy have massive power potential and excellent marks for run creation, Smith has 13 home runs and an excellent triple-slash with a 13.4% strikeout rate, Muncy is more of a sellout power hitter, he has 24 home runs but just a .196/.327/.477 triple-slash with a 27.8% strikeout rate. David Peralta slots in next with JD Martinez likely out of the lineup as he nurses an injury. Peralta is a playable left-handed hitter who joins Jason Heyward and James Outman as good outfield options to help offset high teammate prices while maintaining quality. Peralta has a .284/.319/.424 triple-slash with a 102 WRC+, Heyward has hit nine home runs in 228 opportunities and has a .209 ISO, and Outman has hit 12 home runs in 336 tries with a 9.8% barrel rate. Miguel Rojas and Yonny Hernandez round out the lineup as mix-in options.

Play: Dodgers bats/stacks, Blue Jays bats/stacks, Jose Berrios in small portions

Update Notes:

Follow Us on Twitter. Join us in Discord. Subscribe to the YouTube Channel.

Share this with...

Content Creator: