MLB DFS: DraftKings & FanDuel Main Slate Strategy Overview & Live Show Link – Tuesday 7/25/23

The Tuesday slate gets rolling with 12 games on both DraftKings and FanDuel and a 7:05 ET traditional start time. The board includes a wealth of pitching options with numerous starters carrying at least a bit of believable talent at a range of prices and matchup qualities. There are several fun interleague intra-city/state rivalries on the slate tonight, the Mets are battling the Yankees in the Bronx, the Rangers and Astros will square off in Houston, the Cubs and White Sox are fighting it out on the South Side of Chicago, and the Giants are looking to beat down the Athletics by the Bay, they just may. The long list of viable options basically dictates that we take a fairly loose approach to lineup building for this slate and spread out shares in an effort to cover a wide range of outcomes.

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 – 7/25/23

New York Mets (-108/4.08) @ New York Yankees (-100/4.00)

note: there is weather currently in the area but things should clear in time to play with the potential for a late start

The Mets and Yankees renew their Subway Series in the Bronx tonight with the visiting Mets as slight favorites in the early afternoon. Yankees starter Domingo German has struck out nine hitters in three of his last four starts, one of which was his perfect game. German was far from perfect in his last outing, he allowed five runs on four hits including a home run while walking three and striking out nine. Overall, German has been an effective but not entirely reliable starter this season. The righty has a 4.52 ERA and a 4.11 xFIP with a 25.3% strikeout rate and he has been excellent at throwing and inducing strikes. German has a 14.8% swinging-strike rate and a 30.5% CSW% but he has allowed too much premium contact with an 8.8% barrel rate and 4.25% home runs. German works on a bit of a short leash, outside of runs at history that is, so his ability to book bonuses is never a sure thing, he is on the board with a lower-middle projection for $8,300/$8,200. The projected Mets lineup opens with Brandon Nimmo who has a 7.76 in our home run model with a good chance to poke one into the right field seats. Nimmo has 15 home runs while slashing .263/.358/.446 and creating runs 27% better than average this season. Tommy Pham is back in the projected lineup, the outfielder has nine home runs and 11 stolen bases and has created runs 29% better than average in a strong return to form in 2023, he is still cheap at $3,400/$2,800 despite seizing the everyday role. Francisco Lindor and Pete Alonso have extremely high ceilings despite their flawed seasons. Lindor has not done much with his triple-slash and his run-creation mark is down overall, but his counting stats have been fine for MLB DFS purposes with 19 home runs and 15 stolen bases. Alonso has been stuck at 26 home runs since July 6th, he has been in an extended slump for longer but has tremendous thump at the plate and will ultimately be fine. Alonso is cheap at $4,500/$3,500 in Yankee Stadium against a pitcher who has been allowing home runs even on good days. Jeff McNeil is a correlated scoring option ahead of mashing catcher Francisco Alvarez who has a 10.75 in our home run model and 19 home runs in 255 rookie plate appearances. Alvarez has a 12.9% barrel rate and 43.5% hard-hit rate that rival the team’s leaders and established power-hitting veterans. Daniel VogelbachMark Canha, and Brett Baty are playable mix-ins from the final third. Vogelbach has left-handed power but has hit only six home runs this season, Canha is a capable veteran who has been five percent ahead of the curve for run creation, and Baty is a premium rookie who has not produced much but does have a 45.5% hard-hit rate. The Mets rank as a fairly high-priority stack with good value numbers despite a relatively low total in Vegas.

A matchup with Justin Verlander has the Yankees checked to just 4.00 implied runs in a home game. The team has been largely inept at the plate of late, they showed a bit of life against the lowly Royals but Verlander, even in this year’s form, is a different animal on the mound. The veteran righty has strung together a run of good starts, he went eight innings while allowing just one run on three hits, including a home run, and striking out seven of 28 White Sox hitters. Verlander has quality starts in three of his last five outings, the two in which he failed to reach the bonus were both good starts in which he came out after 5.0 innings. Verlander has allowed four or more runs only four times in 14 starts, giving up six runs twice and four runs twice, he has been otherwise good at keeping scoring in check. The issue has been more with the disappearance of his strikeouts, Verlander’s strikeout rate has dipped from 27.8% last season to just 20.6% this year with his swinging-strike rate plummeting from 11.6% to 9.8% year over year. Verlander is pulling in a strong projection for just $9,100/$9,600, he is easily in play against the limited Yankees lineup and ranks among the top few starters on our pitching board. The projected Yankees lineup opens with lefty Jake Bauers who is slashing .226/.316/.467 with a .241 ISO and seven home runs in 158 plate appearances. Bauers is not a typical leadoff hitter, he has a 29.7% strikeout rate but his walk rate in the small sample sits at 12% which is good enough to lead this current version of the lineup. Gleyber Torres has 16 home runs and eight stolen bases in a productive season that has seen him land 13% better than average for run creation, he is a playable part at $5,000/$3,000 when stacking Yankees. Giancarlo Stanton is up to 13 home runs in 203 plate appearances but is slashing .207/.281/.457 and has a 98 WRC+. Stanton is inexpensive for his ceiling at $5,000/$3,000, even against Verlander he can be deployed with the potential for a power outburst, but he is a mixed bag of quality this season. Anthony Rizzo came to life in the Yankees’ most recent game, he has major potential at first base for just $4,200/$3,000. DJ LeMahieu has been fairly low-end all season and sits 15% below average for run creation while slashing .233/.297/.375 but he does offer multi-position flexibility for cheap prices on both sites. Harrison Bader provides infrequent access to counting stats at low ownership, he has created runs nine percent below average and is not a major priority outside of Yankees stacks. The same is true for shortstop Anthony Volpe. Outfielder Billy McKinney is a mix-in option with believable left-handed power from late in the lineup, McKinney has five home runs in 95 plate appearances as a fill-in for New York. Kyle Higashioka does not produce enough from his 11.4% barrel rate and 47.4% hard hits but he has five home runs in 169 opportunities as a cheap never-popular catcher.

Play: Justin Verlander, Mets bats/stacks, maybe a few Domingo German value darts

Update Notes:

Colorado Rockies (+119/4.28) @ Washington Nationals (-128/4.81)

note: there is weather currently in the area but things should clear in time to play, but the Nationals are the least predictable team in baseball with their rainout trigger

The Rockies and Nationals went to war last night with a 10-6 outcome favoring the visiting Colorado squad. The night did not go well for starter Patrick Corbin and there were fireworks on both sides that may well be replicated tonight by the two low-end teams. The home squad will be starting righty Trevor Williams who has a 4.38 ERA but a 4.98 xFIP with just a 17% strikeout rate and a 4.60% home run rate on 10.2% barrels that screams “hit me hard.” Williams is not a strong option, even against one of baseball’s worst teams, for $6,000/$7,000, a value dart or two would be fine, but he is a low-priority pitcher from the lower-middle of the board. The same is true for Rockies starter Austin Gomber who projects several points below his opponent. Gomber has a 6.18 ERA and 4.88 xFIP with a 15.3% strikeout rate in 102 innings over 20 outings this season. He has allowed far too much premium contact with a 9.6% barrel rate, 44.9% hard hits, and a 4.94% home run rate that should play into the Nationals’ strengths. The lefty has been a somewhat effective starter in spots during his career, but the Nationals are a low strikeout bunch that has been adept at creating runs and even flashes some power in the split against southpaws this season. At $6,200/$7,200, Gomber is also at best a dart throw on this slate.

Colorado’s lineup opens with Jurickson Profar in the projected form, he has a 76 WRC+ and .321 on-base percentage as the team’s terrible choice of an everyday leadoff hitter. Kris Bryant is projected back in the lineup, he has eight home runs with an 85 WRC+ on the season and is slashing .251/.338/.379 in another disappointing year that has him very cheap at $4,700/$2,800. Ryan McMahon is back on the positive side of splits and back in the lineup, the slugging left-handed infielder has an 8.38 in our home run model, he ranks just behind CJ Cron who leads the team at 9.64 going into this matchup. McMahon has 15 home runs in 399 plate appearances and Cron has hit 11 in just 211 chances. Elias Diaz has been a quality option at catcher over his 339 plate appearances, he has 10 home runs and a decent triple-slash but overall he is below average for run creation with just an 85 WRC+. Nolan Jones has major lefty power that was on display again last night, he is up to nine home runs in just 167 plate appearances and has a team-leading 121 WRC+ in the sample, Jones is the only player in the projected Colorado lineup with a positive mark for run creation. Harold Castro and Brenton Doyle round out the lineup along with Ezequiel Tovar, who is our preferred option in the group. Tovar has nine home runs and five stolen bases but just a 77 WRC+ while Castro has a decent hit tool but just a 53 and Doyle has provided counting stats with seven home runs and 14 steals but sits at just 51 WRC+ over 220 opportunities. On the other side, the Nationals have been much more productive against lefties this season, the team’s active roster has a collective 110 WRC+ in the split, ranking them 12th. The seventh-ranked Dodgers are just at 114 in the split, while the Braves lead the world at 142, to put things in perspective. CJ Abrams has been coming on of late and he has been better against same-handed pitching recently, his overall WRC+ is up to 96 and he has hit 10 home runs with 19 stolen bases as a good option for a fair $3,500/$3,200 at shortstop. Lane Thomas has been the team’s best player overall and their best regular against lefties. Thomas has 16 home runs and 12 stolen bases with a 122 WRC+ in 429 plate appearances, in the 135 that came against lefties he has a 186 WRC+ with a .288 ISO and eight of the 16 home runs. Jeimer Candelario is up to a league average 100 WRC+ and has three of his 16 home runs as a righty against left-handed pitching, he is capable in the split but has been better on the other side of the coin. Candelario is easily in play for $3,700/$3,200 at third base. Joey Meneses is slashing .275/.319/.388 with six home runs and a 91 WRC+ in 401 plate appearances, his lack of power has been a bit of a letdown overall, he has a 5.4% barrel rate and 40.3% hard-hit rate on the season but was expected to do a bit more coming into the year. In the split against lefties, Meneses has been three percent below league average for run creation and he has a .133 ISO, but he is playable based on the position in the lineup and a decent bat for a cheap price. Keibert Ruiz is a hard-hitting catcher who rarely strikes out, he has a terrific 9.2% strikeout rate but a limited 5.9% walk rate, Ruiz is constantly putting the ball in play and costs just $3,400/$2,800. The backstop has a 120 WRC+ with a .144 ISO against lefties and has struck out just 5.1% of the time in 98 plate appearances in the split. Stone Garrett has six home runs in 195 plate appearances, Michael Chavis has one in 56 chances, and Alex Call has six in 309 tries. Nine of those 13 home runs came against left-handed pitching, Garrett leads the group with five of his six coming on this side of splits and Chavis has a .202 career ISO against southpaws. Luis Garcia is a capable mix-in, Riley Adams would add another priority bat who excels in the split, he leads the team with a 193 WRC+ and .308 ISO with three home runs in a limited sample of 44 plate appearances against lefties.

Play: Nationals bats/stacks, Rockies bats/stacks in smaller portions

Update Notes:

Kansas City Royals (+179/3.78) @ Cleveland Guardians (-197/5.33)

A lopsided contest is on tap in Cleveland tonight, with quality right-handed starter Aaron Civale looking to take down the low-end Royals lineup. Civale is not a massive strikeout pitcher, he has a 19.2% rate for the season on 9.7% swinging strikes and a 28.6% CSW% but he is very capable on the mound and typically works deep effective innings. Civale has made 11 starts and covered 63 innings with a 2.71 ERA but a 4.61 xFIP that betrays the truth a bit. He has allowed just a 5.4% barrel rate with 1.96% home runs, an improvement over his power output the past two seasons that may have come at the expense of about five percentage points of strikeout rate year over year. Civale has been good this season, he costs $7,200 as a strong SP2 option on the DraftKings slate and he is playable enough against the lousy Royals to be on the board and ranked near Justin Verlander even at a $9,300 FanDuel cost. The Royals land with just a 3.78-run implied team total and not a lot of hope on a day-to-day basis. The team has been among baseball’s worst for run creation all season and they are a highly targetable bunch for strikeouts. Maikel Garcia is playable with a decent hit tool and 14 stolen bases but just a 95 WRC+ in the leadoff spot. Bobby Witt Jr. has been below average in real life with a 97 WRC+ but good for MLB DFS counting stats with 16 home runs and 28 stolen bases as an affordable star at the shortstop position. For $4,900/$3,100 one could do worse than including Witt at the position in at least a handful of lineups either in Royals stacks or as a capable one-off. MJ Melendez has seven home runs on the season, Sal Perez has 17 with a .191 ISO but a 92 WRC+. No one in the Royals projected lineup is above average for run creation this season, that group of contributors has been the team’s best and they are the priorities when stacking Royals bats. Additional value can be squeezed from options like lefties Michael Massey and Nick Pratto who both have a bit of power and decent contact profiles but far too many strikeouts, and Edward Olivares who limits strikeouts better than anyone on his team at just 16.9% and has moderate pop and speed. Drew Waters and Kyle Isbel are lower-end options from late in the lineup, they have a 74 and 64 WRC+ on the season.

Remember the beginning of the fairly bad X-Men movie Apocalypse in which we see the eponymous villain buried under a pyramid’s worth of rubble in ancient Egypt only to be unearthed thousands of years later? That’s exactly how the Royals ended up with Zack Greinke on their roster again. The ancient pitcher has a 16% strikeout rate with a 5.40 ERA and 4.44 xFIP this season, he has induced a 7.1% swinging-strike rate with a 4.42% home run rate on eight percent barrels. Greinke has been good at limiting free passes, his 3.7% walk rate is his lone quality attribute but it is not enough to save him. Cleveland bats have not been a great source of runs or MLB DFS scoring this season, but they have been coming to life and meeting our original expectations with more frequency of late and they are in a strong situation tonight. Steven Kwan has pulled himself up to league average for run creation with a 100 WRC+ and a .271/.342/.373 triple-slash, the correlated scorer costs just $3,800/$3,100 in the outfield. Amed Rosario is cheap at shortstop for $3,900/$2,800, he has three home runs and nine stolen bases with a .100 ISO and 85 WRC+ that need major improvement over his last 300 or so plate appearances. Rosario has a 2.9% barrel rate but a decent 42.3% hard-hit rate on the season and does not strike out much, he should be far better than he has been this year. Jose Ramirez and Josh Naylor carried this squad through the first half, they have WRC+ marks of 126 and 128 with 14 and 15 home runs respectively, they are keys to the Cleveland stack. Andres Gimenez is up to nine home runs and 15 stolen bases and is threatening to truly turn his season around. The second baseman is needed badly in the Cleveland lineup, he has a 94 WRC+ over 380 plate appearances and looks like a good bet to finish the season with a good final third. Josh Bell fills the same position as Naylor on DraftKings but is an option at $2,800 on both sites. Bell has 11 home runs and a 102 WRC+ with a limited .157 ISO over 369 plate appearances, he hit 17 home runs in 647 tries last year but was better for power with 27 long balls in 568 opportunities in 2021. Will BrennanMyles Straw, and Bo Naylor round out the projected lineup, Naylor has two home runs in 74 plate appearances as a cheap catcher while Brennan and Straw are mix-in outfielders with low expectations.

Play: Guardians bats/stacks, Aaron Civale

Update Notes:

Atlanta Braves (-145/5.79) @ Boston Red Sox (+120/4.99)

note: there is a big weather system threatening this game, this is one to watch going into lock.

The pitching situation for the Red Sox is a bit in flux this evening with Brayan Bello making a trip to the Dominican Republic and the paternity list this weekend and not expected back until tomorrow. Boston will have lefty opener Brennan Bernardino on the mound ahead of what is likely to be a somewhat more traditional bullpen game that will potentially see a few innings from righty Nick Pivetta. The veteran worked an inning in relief on the 22nd but has been typically pitching four or five in recent outings in a bulk relief role. Pivetta is the best option the Red Sox have for a few innings, but he is not a good play, particularly with uncertain status, against the Braves’ ludicrously loaded lineup. Atlanta leads the day in everything once again, they have the highest implied team total on the board in Vegas, the highest home run rating in our model, and the highest collective fantasy point projections in the team stack tool. The Braves are just too good, they have broken baseball this season and are always in play for MLB DFS purposes. Ronald Acuna Jr. has 23 home runs and 46 stolen bases with a run-creation mark that sits 63% ahead of the league average. The superstar is always worth shares even as he approaches mid-level pitching prices on DraftKings at $6,700/$4,600. Ozzie Albies has a 12.81 in our home run model as a top second baseman on a daily basis. Albies has 23 home runs with seven stolen bases and has created runs 15% better than average in yet another outstanding season at the plate. Austin Riley has been on a recent rampage in a return to form. The third baseman is up to 22 home runs with a .270/.330/.488 triple-slash with a .219 ISO and has created runs 16% better than average and suddenly looks like a lock to crack the 30-homer mark once again. Matt Olson is already past that barrier with 32 long balls on the season, he has a titanic .317 ISO and a 145 WRC+ for $6,300/$4,300 as one of the best first basemen in the game. Olson has an 18.5% barrel rate and 56.4% hard-hit rate, both of which lead the talented Braves by thin margins. Sean Murphy’s 18.3% barrel rate and 47.8% hard-hit rate are top marks among catchers, he has 17 home runs and a .270 ISO over 297 mostly outstanding plate appearances as the everyday backstop for Atlanta. Marcell Ozuna has 18 home runs, Eddie Rosario has 15, and Orlando Arcia has hit 10 with a 111 WRC+ as a cheap shortstop at the end of the lineup. Michael Harris II has hit nine home runs and stolen 12 bases while creating runs five percent better than the league average after a freezing-cold start to the season.

Boston’s bats are in a more predictable spot than their pitching options but the matchup against Charlie Morton is more playable than it is ideal. The veteran righty has pitched effectively for the most part in 2023, he has a 3.36 ERA and 3.91 xFIP over 19 starts and 109.2 innings, pitching to a 25.2% strikeout rate but a 9.7% walk rate with a premium 12.4% swinging-strike rate and a 30.6% CSW%. Morton is an affordable option on the mound, he projects in the lower-middle of the board however and the Red Sox are pulling a 4.99-run implied team total in Vegas in a Fenway Park game on a deep slate. This is not the best spot in which to roster the veteran righty but it would not be entirely shocking to see him post a relevant score at $9,300/$9,700. Boston’s projected lineup opens with lefty Jarren Duran who has a .317/.367/.514 triple-slash with a 136 WRC+ overall and a .374/.406/.659 triple-slash with a 187 WRC+ and .286 ISO with three home runs and eight stolen bases in his 96 plate appearances in the leadoff spot. Justin Turner is having another fine year at the plate, he is slashing .286/.355/.480 with 16 home runs and has created runs 25% better than average but costs just $4,400/$3,500. Mastaka Yoshida has created runs at a 37% better-than-average pace in his first year in the Show. Yoshida has been crushing MLB pitching all year and is currently slashing .315/.376/.494 with 11 home runs and eight stolen bases. Rafael Devers has 24 long balls on the season, he has a .260 ISO with a 127 mark for run creation and a 14.1% barrel rate with a 51.4% hard-hit rate on the season. Devers is very cheap on DraftKings for his name brand, the star third baseman costs $4,900/$3,900 and is a strong buy in stacks of Red Sox. Adam Duvall is a trade target for some teams, he has seven home runs and a .257 ISO in his limited 153 plate appearances this season. Alex Verdugo and Triston Casas are very capable lefty hitters later in the projected batting order. Verdugo is an affordable outfielder with a strong hit tool and a 111 WRC+ this season while Casas is primed for a big second half and has 14 home runs with a .218 ISO already this season. Connor Wong and Yu Chang are capable mix-in options in the final two spots in the projected lineup.

Play: Braves bats/stacks, Red Sox bats/stacks, Charlie Morton as a dart throw with low expectations is OK but not in our plans

Update Notes:

Seattle Mariners (+108/3.67) @ Minnesota Twins (-117/3.91)

Another day, another dynamite pitching matchup in the renewed series between the Mariners and Twins. As we have seen in recent versions of this game the bats are moderately playable on either side but the focus is firmly with the pitchers on the mound for both teams. Home starter Pablo Lopez is a highly-projected option against the free-swinging Mariners again tonight, he has been very good through most of the 2023 season in a strong step forward with his new club. Lopez has a 30.2% strikeout rate with a 4.22 ERA and 3.50 xFIP over 20 starts and 121.2 innings of excellent depth. Lopez worked just five innings while allowing two runs on six hits and striking out seven of 23 Mariners hitters in this matchup in Seattle last week, he has additional upside beyond that level of performance, it is not predictive in any way to look at that start but it is representative of what the pitcher can do in just an average outing. Lopez is easily on the pitching board, he is likely to be popular on a deep slate at $10,400/$10,000 but should be deployed regardless. An undercut to extreme popularity on either slate is a good idea if the field gets carried away with the righty on a day with an abundance of options, but Lopez is one of the better options tonight. The Mariners projected lineup opens with JP Crawford who has a 121 WRC+ overall and a matching mark for run creation since moving to the leadoff role. Crawford is a cheap option for $3,500/$2,800 at shortstop, he provides good correlated scoring in a bad matchup but should only be deployed in stacks that also include some of Julio RodriguezEugenio Suarez, and Teoscar Hernandez for their power and RBI potential that Crawford requires to deliver value. Rodriguez has 14 homers and 23 stolen bases and has been one percent ahead of the curve for run creation in a bit of a letdown after his amazing rookie year. Suarez has 14 home runs and a .161 ISO with a 103 WRC+ but is still underperforming his home run and power pace of 31 homers and a .223 ISO last year and the same home run total with a .230 ISO the year before. Hernandez has a 31.4% strikeout rate, he sells out for power at the plate but has connected for 16 long balls and a .179 ISO while creating runs one percent below league-average. Cal RaleighTy FranceMike FordTaylor Trammell, and Kolten Wong are playable mix-in options. Raleigh has premium power as a catcher, he has blasted 14 home runs already this season, if Tommy Murphy is in the lineup instead he can be deployed for the same attributes. France has been lousy this season after hitting 20 home runs and posting a strong 127 WRC+ last year, he has a 99 mark for run creation and just seven long balls in 415 plate appearances. Ford has a surprising 11 home runs in 125 opportunities and costs just $2,700 at first base on either site. Trammell has good speed and power potential but has never truly landed at the MLB level and Wong has just been bad all year.

The Twins will be facing George Kirby, a talented righty with a knack for staying out of trouble on the mound. Kirby has a 21.7% strikeout rate with a 3.23 ERA and 3.71 xFIP in his 19 starts and 119.2 innings in 2023. The righty was very good as a rookie last year, he posted a 3.39 ERA and had a 3.33 xFIP with a 24.5% strikeout rate over 130 innings and his best attribute has improved year over year. In 2022, Kirby walked just 4.1% of opposing hitters as a rookie, this season he sits at just 2.3% walks with a 1.04 WHIP, he has been outstanding at limiting opportunities and keeping opposing lineups in check for run creation and power; his home run rate sits at 2.74% on 7.8% barrels so far this season. Kirby is a strong option for $8,700/$9,900, he is far too cheap on DraftKings and he ranks as one of the top four options on our board by raw fantasy point projections given the 28.4% strikeout rate for the projected lineup for the opposing Twins. Minnesota’s lineup is only minimally in play, looking for power output in an unlikely spot. Carlos Correa has 12 home runs with a .174 ISO and 94 WRC+, Edouard Julien has nine long balls while slashing .305/.393/.537 in a strong breakout rookie campaign, and Alex Kirilloff has hit eight home runs while creating runs 35% better than average. Lefty slugger Max Kepler has 14 home runs in 271 plate appearances and has created runs two percent ahead of the curve this year, he is an option in the outfield when stacking Twins and he should be prioritized for value in that situation at $2,800 on either site. Matt Wallner has power potential with one home run in 54 plate appearances since his promotion, he costs $2,000/$2,300 in the outfield. Willi Castro is a decent source of stolen bases but he has been unreliable overall with a 92 WRC+, Trevor Larnach has lefty pop with five homers but a 97 WRC+, Ryan Jeffers can hit a cheap catcher home run, and Joey Gallo rounds out the lineup with a power and on-base threat that may also lend three strikeouts to Kirby’s total.

Play: George Kirby & Pablo Lopez both enthusiastically, only minor hedge positions with either stack

Update Notes:

Cincinnati Reds (+129/3.72) @ Milwaukee Brewers (-140/4.37)

A matchup against Corbin Burnes has the Reds somewhat checked in Vegas with just a 3.72-run implied total but they are pulling decent projections up and down the lineup for MLB DFS scoring given their propensity of power production and stolen base upside. Burnes has pulled himself together in style in his recent outings, overall he has a 25.4% strikeout rate and a 3.49 ERA with a 3.94 xFIP and a 32.3% hard-hit rate. The righty ace has a 12.3% swinging-strike rate with a 29.9% CSW% this season, those are both down several points from his outstanding production in recent seasons but may have finally turned the corner for his 2023 season with a 13-strikeout performance against these same Reds in Cincinnati two starts ago and a 10-strikeout game in which he allowed just two hits and walked only one over eight innings against Philadelphia. Burnes has been effective against this bunch several times already this season, but that is not a predictive measurement by which to make our decisions. The starter projects well but he is not at the top of our board, in fact, he falls behind several starters who are less expensive than his $9,200/$10,300. Burnes has a very clear path to success, if he is truly back on form he should post a dominant fantasy score with a significant strikeout total against the frisky but free-swinging Reds once again tonight, but the righty will almost certainly be one of the top three most highly owned starters on either site. There are good reasons to roster a few Reds stacks as a contrarian position while rostering but undercutting the public on shares of the pitcher. Elly De La Cruz hit another massive home run last night and now has six on the season with 17 stolen bases and a 102 WRC+ over 178 plate appearances. De La Cruz has seen his price deflate somewhat and now costs $5,800/$3,700 at third base or shortstop which makes him a bit easier to reach. TJ Friedl is a good price offset in the second spot, the productive outfielder costs $4,200/$3,400 with seven home runs, 16 stolen bases, a .356 on-base percentage in 318 plate appearances, and a 110 WRC+. Matt McLain has 10 homers, eight stolen bases, an 11.4% barrel rate, a 42% hard-hit rate, and a team-leading 135 WRC+. Jake Fraley has 14 home runs and 16 stolen bases in a big breakout season, the outfielder is cheap at $4,700/$3,300 though his 7.1% barrel rate and 31.6% hard-hit rate make the power output somewhat remarkable. Fraley has always managed to hit his home runs with limited premium contact, he had 12 on 7.3% barrels and 27.4% hard hits in just 247 plate appearances last year. Jonathan India has a 99 WRC+ and should bounce back above the waterline soon, it is nice to see India and Joey Votto get some help in this lineup after they have been the Reds best options the past few seasons. India has 14 home runs and a dozen stolen bases and Votto has blasted eight quick home runs since coming back from the injured list 106 plate appearances ago, he has a .300 ISO and 103 WRC+ despite his .178/.302/.478 triple-slash. Christian Encarnacion-Strand did not deliver our called home run yesterday but he remains a fantastic late lineup option that the public has not caught up to yet. With De La Cruz and McLain both at massive ownership last night, Encarnacion-Strand was at single-digit popularity in a great spot, he is a major prospect who costs just $3,000/$2,800 at first base on DraftKings and third base on FanDuel. Tyler Stephenson is a moderately productive and inexpensive MLB DFS catcher option and Will Benson has been very good over his 167 plate appearances with six home runs and 10 stolen bases in the books.

The Brewers draw Andrew Abbott once again tonight, the lefty hit his two recent bumps in the road against this squad in starts on the 7th and 15th of this month. In the first outing, Abbott struck out six but allowed a season-high – by far – six earned runs on nine hits including two home runs. Abbott struck out just three while walking two and allowing two more home runs but just two earned runs on three hits overall in a six-inning performance in the second game, it was a better real-life start than it was an MLB DFS score. Abbott has been good this season but, as we have featured several times, he has outperformed expectations with a 2.10 ERA but a 4.62 xFIP. The lefty’s strikeout rate has cooled to a still-good 26.8% over 55.2 innings in nine starts, he has an 8.5% walk rate that could be lower but is also the same as Burnes has on the other side with a lower strikeout rate this year. Abbott has allowed a 3.76% home run rate on a concerning 44.2% hard hits and 9.4% barrels with a 25.4-degree average launch angle, he seems to have gotten lucky to keep power in check as well as he has, and he has given up several home runs already. The lefty has a very good 11.5% swinging-strike rate and an effective 27.6% CSW%, overall he looks like a strong option in this matchup and he projects among the top pitchers on the slate, but he does not come without risk at his $9,500/$10,800 price tag. Abbott is a more comfortable option on the DraftKings slate but may be a sharper play on FanDuel where the aggressive price should render him fairly low-owned. The Brewers are in play for a bit of production at significant value pricing on both sites once again. Christian Yelich is too cheap at $5,000/$3,800, the star outfielder has created runs 32% better than average while hitting 14 home runs and stealing 22 bases in a strong season. William Contreras and Willy Adames have combined for 27 home runs, Adames has 17 of them but Contreras is the more consistent option with a positive mark for run creation at 114 WRC+. Adames is not trustworthy at just 87 with a .208/.290/.404 triple-slash but he drives the ball when he connects with his 13.8% barrel rate. Owen MillerAndruw MonasterioBrian AndersonTyrone TaylorVictor Caratini, and Joey Wiemer are mix-and-match options from the fourth spot in the lineup down. Among that group, only Monasterio has been better than the league average by WRC+ with a 117 over his 102 productive plate appearances. The multi-position infielder has a .292/.382/.393 triple-slash with a home run and four stolen bases as a playable mid-lineup piece in stacks of Brewers. Anderson cooled badly after a hot start to the season, he is a cheap right-handed veteran on the plus side of splits, Taylor hit 17 sneaky home runs in 405 plate appearances last year but has not done much this year, he has one long ball and five steals in 88 opportunities, and Caratini is a capable power-hitting backup catcher who has five home runs in 144 plate appearances with a 49.5% hard-hit rate. Wiemer is a terrific athlete who has 12 home runs and 11 stolen bases from the bottom of the lineup but he has been very inconsistent in slashing just .202/.289/.382 with an 82 WRC+.

Play: Andrew Abbott, Corbin Burnes, Reds bats/stacks, Brewers bats/stacks in that order

Update Notes:

Texas Rangers (+135/4.13) @ Houston Astros (-147/4.98)

The pitching situation in Texas appears fairly dicey for DFS purposes on both sides. The Astros will have righty JP France on the hill for $8,100/$8,400 which seems like a lot to pay for a starter with a 17.1% strikeout rate and 4.55 xFIP against the Rangers, even if they will be without Corey Seager again today. The Rangers are projected to have Adolis Garcia back in the lineup but they even have enough firepower without him that we would not want to utilize France in this situation, Texas should have a higher run total than their 4.13 implied spot. The Astros will be facing a bullpen game in which we should see several innings from limited righty Owen White, but may also (or instead) get lefty Cody Bradford. The opener will be rookie Yerry Rodriguez, who is expected to work only an inning or two. None of the pitching options for Texas have appeal for MLB DFS purposes, this is a game in which we can source offensive production.

The visiting Rangers are limited to just a 4.13-run total in what seems like a mistake. France has a 3.13 ERA but his xFIP is far more honest and he will be offering up plenty of premium contact to the Rangers’ elite explosive lineup. Marcus Semien has an 8.05 in our home run model and 14 long balls on the season. The second baseman has a 116 WRC+ and makes a great starting point for stacks of Rangers hitters. Travis Jankowski has been good with his triple-slash, knows how to get on base and stay involved in scoring, and has swiped 15 bases this season, it would be fair to point out that Jankowski should probably lead off ahead of Semien in this version of the lineup. Nathaniel Lowe has 11 home runs and has created runs 30% better than average this season, he is a great way to offset pricing for teammates including Semien, Garcia, and Josh Jung, who blasted his 20th long ball of the year last night and has a .215 ISO while creating runs 24% better than average. Jonah Heim has a stout bat behind the plate and has been well above average for run creation all year, Ezequiel Duran has been a late-lineup star for Texas and has 13 home runs with a 132 WRC+ in 292 plate appearances, Robbie Grossman loses the trend and is the only player in the projected lineup below average for run creation at 81 WRC+, but Leody Taveras picks the theme up as a great wraparound play who has 11 home runs and 10 steals in a strong season from the ninth spot in the lineup. Mauricio Dubon is the fill-in leadoff man for the Astros, he is a mix-in option with a touch of power but has been 16% behind the curve for runs this year. Kyle Tucker is a star who has 17 home runs and 18 stolen bases in another strong season, Alex Bregman follows him with right-handed power but a hefty price tag for $6,000/$3,300 at third base. Bregman has been 16% better than average creating runs and has 16 home runs with just a .170 ISO, he seems a bit overpriced on DraftKings but is in an outstanding spot in the lineup in a good matchup. If Yordan Alvarez makes it back into the Astros’ confirmed lineup he should be in most stacks of the team, he has a 13.86 in our home run model with 17 in the books in just 242 chances this year and his return from injury is supposedly imminent. Jose Abreu has eight home runs, he has been outpaced easily by Chas McCormick who has 13 in half the plate appearances. McCormick has 11 stolen bases with a .249 ISO and a 150 WRC+ in a strong breakout season but he remains affordable at $4,900/$3,600 in the outfield. Yainer Diaz is a good option at catcher, Jeremy Pena has not been good and has an 82 WRC+ playing every day at shortstop, and Martin Maldonado is a mix-in from the ninth spot at best.

Play: Astros bats/stacks, Rangers bats/stacks

Update Notes:

Chicago Cubs (-109/4.61) @ Chicago White Sox (+101/4.49)

The matchup on the South Side has limited pitching appeal as well, both teams land at playable implied run totals in Vegas in a duel between home starter Michael Kopech and visiting veteran Kyle Hendricks. Between the two, Hendricks is projecting as the better option with a mid-board mark that does not need to be prioritized against a White Sox lineup that is also extracting potential for power hitting against the soft-tossing righty. Kopech has a limited projection that is somewhat capped by an overall lack of depth, he has not been reliable for seeing the fifth inning throughout most of the past two months. Overall, Kopech has a 25.3% strikeout rate with a 5.22 xFIP in 92.1 innings over 18 starts, he is not bereft of talent on the mound and he does have a bit of strikeout potential tonight against a White Sox lineup with a 24% collective strikeout rate, but he has been very difficult to trust and does not project well. Hendricks is not a strikeout threat, he sits at just 16.1% but has more reliability for depth and clean innings. The righty has made 11 starts and thrown 64 innings, he has a 3.38 ERA but a 4.63 xFIP and just a 16.1% strikeout rate. Neither pitcher is a priority on this slate, either can be deployed in limited doses or as SP2 options on the DraftKings slate with fairly low expectations.

The Cubs have a 4.61-run implied total and the White Sox sit at 4.49, there are good options at the plate in both lineups. The visiting Cubs are projected to have Mike Tauchman in the leadoff role, the limited quad-A outfielder has a .363 on-base percentage with four home runs and a 110 WRC+ over 194 opportunities. Nico Hoerner has 22 stolen bases but just a .327 on-base percentage and 96 WRC+ in the second spot, Ian Happ is a better table-setter with his .372 on-base percentage and 112 WRC+, he has been limited for power but costs just $3,400/$2,900 in the outfield. Cody Bellinger is cheap at $4,600/$3,900 with eligibility in the outfield or at first base on both sites. Bellinger has 14 home runs and 12 steals with a 122 WRC+ in just 287 plate appearances. Seiya Suzuki and Dansby Swanson are capable bats later in the deep lineup, the veteran sluggers both come at cheap prices and demand shares in an abundance of stacks of Cubs. Miles Mastrobuoni and Tucker Barnhart are mix-in options late in the lineup, Christopher Morel is a play for power at $4,900/$3,600 with triple-position eligibility on the blue site. There is more power flashing on the White Sox side of the game, despite a lower run total they have better home run hitters on the squad, namely, all three of Luis Robert Jr.Eloy Jimenez, and Jake Burger are above the “magic number” for home run potential in this matchup. The trio of right-handed power bats is a strong group to include in a stack of White Sox, Robert leads the way with 28 home runs, Jimenez has 13, and Burger has hit 21 but is more limited than the other two at the plate in other aspects. Andrew Benintendi is a correlated scoring play in the leadoff role, Tim Anderson has a 56 WRC+ and has shown a bit of light-hitting life of late, and Yasmani Grandal is a mix-in catcher option who typically lands at cheap prices, no ownership, and in a good spot in the batting order. Gavin Sheets and Oscar Colas have left-handed pop late in the lineup, though neither has been at all consistent this season. Sheets has eight home runs with a 77 WRC+ in 217 opportunities, Colas has been limited to one long ball and a 44 WRC+ in his first 128 plate appearances as a part-timer in his rookie year. Zach Remillard has a 115 WRC+ over 92 plate appearances as a cheap mix-in.

Play: White Sox bats/stacks, Cubs bats/stacks, limited value darts of either starter are OK but not good, with Hendricks lightly preferred

Update Notes:

St. Louis Cardinals (+109/4.39) @ Arizona Diamondbacks (4.71)

The Cardinals are drawing just a middling fantasy projection against quality righty Merrill Kelly, who has made 16 starts and thrown 95 innings in 2023. Kelly has a 3.22 ERA and 3.83 xFIP with a 25.7% strikeout rate in a nice step forward this season. Last year the righty posted a 3.37 ERA and 3.85 xFIP with a 22% strikeout rate over 200.1 innings in 33 starts, this is believable progress on display and he is pulling a playable projection that lands in the upper-middle of the deep pitching board against the Cardinals tonight. Kelly costs $9,000/$10,500 which puts him at a difficult price point that may render him unpopular, he is an option for light ownership ahead of the field in large tournaments if he is projected for lower single-digit popularity on either slate. The Cardinals have Brendan Donovan in the leadoff spot with triple-position eligibility for $2,900 on FanDuel but only second base eligibility at $3,700 on DraftKings. The flexibility makes Donovan an appealing piece on FanDuel, he is less important on the DraftKings board but is a correlated scoring and price play in alignment with the team’s stars in stacks of Cardinals. Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado have massive power in any matchup, the first baseman has 17 home runs and Arenado has hit 22 on the season with the duo producing WRC+ marks of 133 and 132 respectively to lead this team. Lars Nootbaar was questionable with a heel injury but put up a good game last night and seems likely to be right back at it tonight from the left side. Nootbaar has good pop and speed and is a productive but inexpensive option at $4,000/$3,200. Willson Contreras and Tyler O’Neill offer cheap right-handed power late in the lineup, O’Neill is particularly inexpensive at $3,700/$2,300 in the outfield. Nolan GormanJordan Walker, and Paul DeJong round out the deep lineup. Gorman has 20 home runs with a .246 ISO and a 14.4% barrel rate and costs just $4,400/$3,400, Walker has nine home runs with a 117 WRC+ and is slashing .277/.338/.445 with a 49.7% hard-hit rate, and DeJong is a veteran with 13 home runs in just 289 plate appearances.

The Diamondbacks are a strong option at the plate tonight in a matchup with lefty Steven Matz, who is not pulling in a strong projection. Matz has a 22.2% strikeout rate with a 4.67 ERA and 3.90 xFIP this season, he has induced a 10.5% swinging-strike rate while allowing just 5.7% barrels and a 2.81% home run rate in 81 innings over 13 starts, he seems more targetable than playable but a few darts are justifiable at $6,300/$7,400 with very low expectations of success. Matz has been a good pitcher at times and a very bad pitcher at times, this is at best a both-sided situation when it comes to rostering the pitcher, we greatly prefer the low-strikeout high-octane Diamondbacks bats. Ketel Marte has a 10.19 in our home run model and 17 long balls on the season, he is projected to lead off for Arizona’s frisky lineup and has a .370 on-base percentage and 137 WRC+ to support the rest of the squad from that spot. Corbin Carroll has hit 21 home runs and stolen 29 bases with a .263 ISO and 140 WRC+ as a breakout rookie, he costs $6,000/$4,100 and is totally worthwhile in stacks of Diamondbacks considering how inexpensive the rest of his productive teammates are on this slate. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. has 15 home runs with a .206 ISO and 102 WRC+ and strikes out just 16.4% of the time but costs only $4,500/$3,000. Christian Walker lands at $5,400/$3,600 at first base, he has 21 home runs and strikes out merely 18.3% of the time as a fantastic positional play for power. Evan Longoria is our overall home run pick for the day, he has an 11.27 in our home run model with 11 on the board in 175 plate appearances this season and a .268 ISO with a team-leading 56.3% hard-hit rate. Emmanuel Rivera has a good triple slash over 200 plate appearances and he comes cheap late in the lineup if he plays, Jose Herrera is an affordable catcher if he plays, and Nick Ahmed rounds out the lineup with Jake McCarthy as a mix-in option.

Play: Diamondbacks bats/stacks, Cardinals bats/stacks, Merill Kelly in moderate shares

Update Notes:

Pittsburgh Pirates (+232/3.28) @ San Diego Padres (-259/5.34)

After blowing up last night’s slate with an eight-run outburst that provided several very good fantasy scores at cheap prices, the Pirates will look to play the same joke on lefty stud starter Blake Snell who lands at $10,000/$11,000 as one of the top three pitching options on the board. Snell has a premium 31.6% strikeout rate with an ugly 13% walk rate that has always been his primary handicap on the mound. The southpaw can be dazzling but he is inefficient and can get himself into too much trouble at times. Of course, with a 15.2% swinging-strike rate and 30.7% CSW%, Snell has more than enough to pitch his way out of jams and he typically does. The lefty has a 2.67 ERA and 3.53 xFIP on the season and has limited hard hits to just 33.7% with 87.2 mph of exit velocity and a 2.43% home run rate. Overall, Snell has massive appeal, even at high prices, on both MLB DFS sites tonight. The Pirates are only in play in a contrarian sense, they have a 3.28-run implied total on the board in Vegas and limited appeal with Connor Joe in the leadoff role. Joe has a 105 WRC+ and seven home runs on the season as a part-time player for $3,000/$2,400 at first base or in the outfield. Bryan Reynolds and Andrew McCutchen are veterans with 10 home runs each this season. Reynolds has a 102 WRC+ and McCutchen has outpaced him with a run creation mark 22% better than average, but both hitters are in a rough matchup tonight. Carlos Santana went deep in a big spot for his 11th home run last night, Henry Davis remains affordable in the heart of the lineup and has a 118 WRC+ over his first 123 plate appearances with four home runs and three steals on the board, and the bottom of the lineup is filled with the hopes and dreams of Pirates fans with a handful of young players. Jared Triolo has a 77 WRC+ over his first 85 plate appearances, Endy Rodriguez has a 93 WRC+ with one home run in 23 tries and is a highly regarded catching prospect, and Liover Peguero had a big outburst at the plate last night with his first home run. Gonzales is a mix-in hit tool option who leads the group with two home runs in 95 plate appearances but falls behind the others in expectations over the long term.

The Padres have one of the slate’s highest implied team totals at 5.34 runs in a matchup with ancient veteran lefty Rich Hill who was the guy already buried under where they found Zack Greinke’s tomb all those years ago. Hill has made 20 starts and thrown 109.2 innings this year, the lefty has a 4.84 ERA with a 4.70 xFIP to go with a 19.3% strikeout rate on just 7.2% swinging strikes. Hill has allowed a 10.1% barrel rate but just 2.67% home runs to this point, but the Padres’ star-laden lineup may have something to say about how that number looks tomorrow. If the lefty can navigate the team’s stars two or three times he has a bit of potential and does not project like a total disaster on this slate in a both-sided situation. For just $6,100/$6,800, Hill has a playable mid-board projection that should only be utilized by those who are willing to embrace risk and the reality of a play that could badly misfire. The Padres have Ha-Seong Kim in the leadoff role, he has 14 home runs and 18 stolen bases in his most productive MLB season to date and is a good option when stacking this team. Kim has a 126 WRC+ and gets on base at a .363 clip ahead of the stars in the lineup. Fernando Tatis Jr. has 17 home runs and 15 stolen bases with a 130 WRC+, Juan Soto leads the Padres with a 151 WRC+ and has 19 home runs to tie Manny Machado for the team lead. Soto is cheap at $5,700/$4,000 given his superstar output, Machado is still underpriced at $5,400/$3,800 at third base. Xander Bogaerts is also inexpensive for his high ceiling at $5,000/$3,000 at shortstop. Bogaerts has a .264/.346/.403 triple-slash with a 111 WRC+ and 11 home runs with 10 stolen bases in 408 plate appearances, he remains a discounted star. Gary Sanchez has massive power and a 10.1% barrel rate with nine home runs in 162 plate appearances but is also below the Mendoza line as an all-or-nothing option behind the plate. Jake Cronenworth, Luis Campusano, and Matthew Batten round out the projected Padres batting order. Campusano is a cheap second catcher option and Batten ha a home run in his eight plate appearances in the Show but is a 28-year-old non-prospect overall.

Play: Blake Snell, Padres bats/stacks, Rich Hill value darts

Update Notes:

Oakland Athletics (+227/3.11) @ San Francisco Giants (-254/5.01)

The visiting Athletics have the lowest implied total on the board at just 3.11 runs in a matchup against sturdy veteran righty Alex Cobb, who has pitched to a 3.15 ERA with a 3.42 xFIP over 100 innings in 18 starts this season. Cobb has a 21.1% strikeout rate that should play well against the low-end Athletics lineup and his primary attribute is keeping the ball on the ground and in the ballpark. Cobb has allowed just a 1.86% home run rate on 1.5 degrees of launch angle on the average this season, last year it was 1.43% home runs on 3.7% barrels and a 1.8-degree launch, and the year before was 1.27% home runs on 4.2% barrels and three degrees of launch angle. Cobb is very good at limiting opposing offenses and he projects as one of the very best options on the pitching board for a great $7,600 DraftKings price that makes him the top SP2 option with a major bullet on that site. Cobb is a great option on the blue site as well, he costs just $8,900 and has plenty of potential to book both a win and quality start bonus given his typical depth and the support from a Giants lineup that will be facing limited lefty Ken Waldichuk, who is a non-entity on the mound for DFS purposes given his 6.75 ERA and 5.34 xFIP with just a 20.5% strikeout rate and an aggressive 12.9% walk rate. Waldichuk is a lefty with a bit of prospect pedigree but he has shown very little as a starter at the MLB level, he is a target for Giants bats in this matchup.

The Athletics lineup is very limited in general, against the arsenal that Cobb deploys and his ability to check power they are very difficult to roster. The Oakland lineup is projected to open with Tony Kemp, who has a 75 WRC+ and .297 on-base percentage, he is followed by hard-hitting rookie Zack Gelof, who has a 5.33 to lead the team in our home run model, and JJ Bleday, another lefty hitter who has a 3.0 in the home run model with eight on the board for the season. Seth Brown leads the projected lineup with 10 home runs, the lefty has a .196 ISO but a 90 WRC+ and sits below the Mendoza line in 206 plate appearances. Cody Thomas is a left-handed outfield prospect with a bit of pop in a bad spot, he is very cheap at $2,100/$2,200. Tyler Soderstrom is a high-end catcher prospect who is the team’s top young player, he has made 32 plate appearances since his promotion but has not done anything with them. Jace PetersonShea Langeliers, and Nick Allen round out a bad lineup in a bad matchup. The Giants are the greatly preferred side of this matchup and they have better than a five-run implied total in Vegas. Austin Slater is a capable leadoff hitter against lefties, he is slashing .303/.373/.455 with a 130 WRC+ over 110 plate appearances this season, against southpaws he has a 150 WRC+ in 68 opportunities against lefties. Wilmer Flores has a 147 WRC+ with a .223 ISO in 111 plate appearances in the split this season, he has always been terrific on this side of platoon action. Mike Yastrzemski has not performed well in 66 plate appearances against same-handed pitching this season with just a .143 ISO and 42 WRC+. JD Davis is a good right-handed hitter but he has been better in reverse splits against fellow righties this season and has just a 92 WRC+ but a good .193 ISO in the split against lefties. Four of his 12 home runs have come against lefties as well, there is upside in the inexpensive corner man. Patrick Bailey has been good over 182 plate appearances but has dipped to just 99 WRC+ overall. Luis Matos is a decent hit-and-speed prospect with a bit of pop, he has one home run and three stolen bases so far in 118 plate appearances. Michael Conforto also loses potential against lefties, but there are lefties and then there are starters like Waldichuk who may not even reach Conforto’s spot in the lineup on a bad night. David Villar is inexpensive but has not been productive over his 140 opportunities this season, he hit nine home runs in 181 chances last year and has five in the small sample this season but is sitting at just 52 WRC+, the same mark carried by Casey Schmitt in the final spot in the lineup.

Play: Alex Cobb, Giants bats/stacks

Update Notes:

Toronto Blue Jays (+124/4.23) @ Los Angeles Dodgers (-135/4.87)

The final game of the day produced an exciting extra-inning matchup that became suddenly slate-relevant late in the evening in a 6-3 Blue Jays victory. Tonight’s matchup between capable home starter Julio Urias and human roller coaster Chris Bassitt could go in several directions, but Vegas likes the Dodgers for some runs and their starter for the better outing between the two pitchers and we agree. Urias has made 14 starts and thrown 75.1 innings this season, the lefty has a 5.02 ERA and 4.25 xFIP with a 23% strikeout rate and a good 5.4% walk rate. Urias has been better at limiting home runs in years past, he has allowed a 4.79% home run rate so far this year, but his 32.1% hard-hit rate is roughly in line with the 30.2% and 30.3% he posted in each of the past two seasons, he has just made a few mistakes in the fairly small sample. Urias costs $9,600/$8,800, he is not the most reliable option for depth on the mound but typically will work six innings in a good game. Urias is a mid-board option and not a high-priority pitcher in a tough matchup against a Blue Jays team that he has capped at a 4.23-run implied total that renders them less appealing. George Springer is a strong play at the top of the lineup, the star outfielder has a 104 WRC+ with 13 home runs and 13 stolen bases and is still cheap after a slow start. Bo Bichette started last night getting a night off but ended up with a couple of late plate appearances after pinch-hitting, he should be in his customary second spot in the lineup. Bichette costs $5,700/$3,200 at shortstop, he has 16 home runs and a run creation mark that sits 27% better than the league average. With a lefty on the mound, we will see Brandon Belt take a seat with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. sliding up the lineup to the third spot. Guerrero is a star with a 121 WRC+ and an outstanding contact profile, he is easy to include at just $5,500/$3,600. Matt Chapman has a productive 17.7% barrel rate and 59.4% hard-hit rate this season, the third baseman is cheap for his ceiling when hitting cleanup against a lefty who has coughed up more power than usual so far this season. Whit Merrifield had a very good game and was flashing his hit tool last night, he sits at .299/.351/.403 with a productive 112 WRC+ and 20 stolen bases. Danny Jansen and Alejandro Kirk both slot into the projected lineup with power in the catcher role, Jansen has 12 home runs in just 217 opportunities with a .236 ISO while Kirk has hit four in 252 chances with a .076 ISO and 89 WRC+. Jordan Luplow and Santiago Espinal make for playable mix-in options in an abundance of Blue Jays stacks, Luplow is interesting for a sneaky minimum-priced power bat.

Righty Chris Bassitt has a 3.92 ERA and 4.37 xFIP and tends to do the exact opposite of what we may want, need, or expect when rostering or skipping him. The frustrating righty was formerly a high-end option who was very reliable for depth and clean innings, he has provided those in spots this season but has been far from reliable with several major blow-ups on the mound and he has just a 21.8% strikeout rate on the season with a 3.51% home run rate. Bassitt has the talent to post a reasonably good score for $7,500/$9,200, he is much more of a playable part of the DraftKings slate at his low SP2 cost, he is a dart throw on the single-starter site at a fairly aggressive price given the matchup against the Dodgers. Los Angeles is carrying a 4.87-run implied total and they look like a good MLB DFS option on both sites once again. Mookie BettsFreddie Freeman, and Will Smith are superstars who can be rostered on a daily basis in essentially any matchup. Betts still has triple-position eligibility on FanDuel and plays second and outfield on DraftKings. Freeman is one of baseball’s best first basemen, if not the full-stop best in the game. He has a .329/.410/.580 triple-slash with a .251 ISO, a run-creation mark 66% better than the league average, and even adds 12 stolen bases to his ridiculous tally. Max Muncy has an 8.51 in our home run model with 25 on the year after a big knock in last night’s game, he is cheap at $4,800/$3,900 given his ceiling for power against a limited righty. JD Martinez slots back in with prodigious power potential, he has 24 long balls and a .305 ISO with a 132 WRC+ in a fantastic season and costs just $5,200/$4,000. David PeraltaJason Heyward, and James Outman are one of our regular go-to target groups at the bottom of a lineup, joining the productive bottom third from the Braves, Phillies, and Rangers. Peralta has a good triple-slash with moderate power from the left side, Heyward has 10 home runs to Peralta’s seven, but Outman is ahead of both veterans with 12 homers in 341 chances. Miguel Rojas closes things out as a low-end cheap infielder.

Play: Dodgers bats/stacks, Blue Jays bats/stacks, Julio Urias as a mid-level option, Chris Bassitt value darts (DraftKings SP2 focused)

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