Make sure you keep a close eye on our MLB weather and line movement tools. If you have any questions, you can always hit me up @chrismeaney. In today’s MLB DFS breakdown, we target value to pair up with Freddie Freeman, Matt Olson and Mike Trout.
New York Mets (4.8) @ Philadelphia Phillies (5.9)
Jason Vargas (LHP) @ Nick Pivetta (RHP)
Over/Under: 10.5 Moneyline: PHI -155
Pitcher Breakdown: Jason Vargas hasn’t allowed more than three earned runs in a start since April 13th. That’s 10 in a row, and in eight of those outings, it’s been two or fewer. That said, no thanks. It looks like the Phillies have started to figure things out as they’ve scored 20 runs in the first two games of this series.
Nick Pivetta has more upside, but there’s a lot of risk with this pick. I like his price range, and there’s some strikeout appeal, along with a possible win, but there’s also a good chance he allows a couple of bombs. Pivetta has allowed 12 homers through nine starts and five in his past two games. The Mets also ate him up earlier in the year with two homers, seven hits and three runs over five innings.
Batter Breakdown: Right-handed bats have crushed Pivetta this season: .337/.379/.621 and a .412 wOBA. Let’s switch our focus from the lefty bats to the right-handed hitters like Peter Alonso and Todd Frazier. Both have serious HR potential.
Scott Kingery hit his 10th homer last night and has value on FanDuel as the Phillies’ leadoff hitter. Rhys Hoskins has homered in back-to-back games and three of four. Maikel Franco also has homered in back-to-back games and is free on FanDuel.
Texas Rangers (4.3) @ Detroit Tigers (4.3)
Mike Minor (LHP) @ Matt Boyd (LHP)
Over/Under: 8.5 Moneyline: DET -107
Pitcher Breakdown: Mike Minor is absolutely fine to use tonight, but he’s a tad expensive and he’s up against Matt Boyd. Maybe that will keep ownership down and most will likely look to Patrick Corbin as there’s a bit less risk. You can use Minor in cash, though, as Jesse Chavez rolled through this lineup last night.
Boyd is certainly someone to think about in tournaments as the Rangers have the highest strikeout rate in the bigs against left-handed pitchers. Boyd is almost certain to allow a homer, though, as he’s allowed at least one in 14 of 16 starts and seven homers in his past four outings.
Batter Breakdown: It’s been right-handed hitters who have had the best of Boyd (12 HR), but Texas doesn’t have a lot of them. Delino DeShields is not a big home run guy and neither is Elvis Andrus. Yet, they both rank inside the top four in team wOBA vs LHP. Joey Gallo leads the way with a .436 wOBA thanks to a .308 average and five homers.
Washington Nationals (4.1) @ Miami Marlins (3.4)
Patrick Corbin (LHP) @ Zac Gallen (RHP)
Over/Under: 7.5 Moneyline: MIA +130
Pitcher Breakdown: Zac Gallen‘s ownership was pretty high in his first start and he was worth the cheap price tag as he only allowed one run through five innings against the Cardinals. He struck out six and checks in at a reasonable price this evening. I believe many will want to plug him in again as a value with upside, so that makes me lean Patrick Corbin.
Corbin is the better pitcher, he has the higher ceiling, the matchup is better and I think there could be low ownership here because of some of his inconsistent play. Corbin’s strikeouts are down and his home runs are up, but he tossed a complete game shutout against Miami just five outings ago.
Batter Breakdown: This is a very low run total and we could very well see the under hit in this game. You could go against the fantasy community and stack Nationals, because I can’t see many going that way. Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto will get glossed over at their price.
Oakland Athletics (4.4) @ St. Louis Cardinals (5.2)
Daniel Mengden (RHP) @ Adam Wainwright (RHP)
Over/Under: 9.5 Moneyline: STL -145
Pitcher Breakdown: Daniel Mengden enters with a 84 percent contact rate, 45 percent hard-hit rate and 40 percent fly ball rate. If the Cardinals can’t get going against Mengden, they have some serious issues.
Adam Wainwright doesn’t have any fantasy appeal as he doesn’t strike many out and the A’s don’t have a lot of swing-and-misses in their lineup.
Batter Breakdown: Left-handed bats have six homers and .404 wOBA against Wainwright. They are also slashing .325/.409/.581. Dial-up Matt Olson.
Let’s jump on the Cardinals today in tournaments. There’s a ton of value on FanDuel with Paul DeJong and Paul Goldschmidt. Jose Martinez is free over there and he has a decent price tag on DraftKings. The Cardinals have one of the highest team implied totals on the slate, despite their struggles this month. Tommy Edman atop the order is interesting due to the cheap price.
Atlanta Braves (4.3) @ Chicago Cubs (4.8)
Dallas Keuchel (LHP) @ Yu Darvish (RHP)
Over/Under: 9.5 Moneyline: CHC -130
Pitcher Breakdown: Dallas Keuchel doesn’t strike out enough batters for me to suggest him in tournaments and Yu Darvish is out of control. Darvish has 97 strikeouts in 85.1 innings, but he’s walked 47 (4.96 BB/9) and he’s allowed 16 homers – five in his past three games. He has a 5.91 ERA at home compared to a 3.59 mark on the road.
Batter Breakdown: Ten of the 16 homers Darvish has allowed have come at Wrigley Field. Also, 10 of them have been to LHB. Freddie Freeman is worth all of your money, and you might as well get Ronald Acuna Jr. in there as well. Nick Markakis has value on FanDuel.
Kris Bryant (.453 wOBA) and Javier Baez (.448 wOBA) are one and two on the Cubs in wOBA vs southpaws. They have six homers each and Baez leads Chicago with a .333 average. Bryant is second with a .291 mark.
Cincinnati Reds (4.7) @ Los Angeles Angels (4.9)
Tanner Roark (RHP) @ Jaime Barria (RHP)
Over/Under: 9.5 Moneyline: LAA -115
Pitcher Breakdown: Tanner Roark is having himself a nice season and is rocking a 3.25 ERA on the road, but the Angels don’t strike out enough to get excited about rostering him. Plus, Roark has been known to allow a home run or two and more so lately – four in last four. He’s surrendered at least 23 in each of his last two seasons.
Jaime Barria looked sharp in his last start, which was his first since April 27th. He only allowed one run on three hits while striking out six over five against Oakland. Barria had a very solid 3.41 ERA over 129.1 innings with the Angels last season, but he got off to a rough start in 2019 and was sent down after just four starts. The Reds rank in the bottom seven in wOBA, wRC+ and AVG, so the matchup is right if you’re looking for yesterday’s Jesse Chavez.
Batter Breakdown: It’s hard to get on board with the Reds offense lately. Eugenio Suarez and Yasiel Puig are decent tournament options, but you can’t trust this team in cash. In 2018, RHB had 11 homers and a .358 wOBA against Barria.
Besides Mike Trout and Justin Upton, I’d take a look at lefties Shohei Ohtani and Kole Calhoun. Lefties are slashing .293/.393/.479 with a .374 wOBA against Roark. Five of the six homers he’s allowed have come against LHB.
Seattle Mariners (4.5) @ Milwaukee Brewers (6.1)
Matt Carasiti (RHP) @ Adrian Houser (RHP)
Over/Under: 10 Moneyline: MIL -213
Pitcher Breakdown: Wade LeBlanc will enter this game at some point tonight and checks in with an 81 percent contact rate and 41 percent fly ball rate, so he’s not an option in Milwaukee.
Adrian Houser is a pass as well as he’s making his third start of the season and first since May 7th. He has 16 appearances this season and he’s yet to pitch more than four innings in any of them. I have a feeling we could talk about him in the future as his strikeout upside will make him appealing, but not tonight.
Batter Breakdown: The cheap contrarian and low owned Mariners were money last night, so we should consider them again. I’d expect more eyes to be on J.P. Crawford and Dan Vogelbach as it’s extremely hard to ignore their price tags on FanDuel. Domingo Santana‘s price on DraftKings is very high, but again, you can fit him and the Mariners in pretty easily on FanDuel. Vogelbach’s .429 wOBA vs RHP is the fifth-highest in baseball.
Eight of the 10 homers LeBlanc has allowed have been against RHB and there are a lot of underperforming right-handed hitters in this MIL lineup right now. I’d consider fading them again as this is a team that’s going through a bit of a cold stretch on offense. Ryan Braun and Jesus Aguilar are noting more than GPP options.
Pittsburgh Pirates (3.8) @ Houston Astros (5.8)
Dario Agrazal (RHP) @ Framber Valdez (LHP)
Over/Under: 9.5 Moneyline: HOU -240
Pitcher Breakdown: The Astros will be a popular stack against Dario Agrazal, who only lasted four innings in his debut against the Marlins. He allowed two runs on six hits and only fanned three batters. Agrazal has shown some great control and ground ball rates in the minors but he’s had very low strikeout rates.
Framber Valdez is one of the better value arms out there and it’s a good idea to get a piece of him. He was lit up in his previous start against the Yankees but had two very strong showings before that where he combined for 15 strikeouts and only allowed three runs over 13 innings. The Astros are heavy favorites and should provide Valdez with enough run support for the win. Think of Valdez the same way we thought of Jesse Chavez yesterday.
Batter Breakdown: Jose Altuve‘s price is still low for what he can bring you, and Michael Brantley is affordable on FanDuel. I think paying up for Alex Bregman and Yordan Alvarez is a smart strategy, especially on FanDuel where they are both cheaper than George Springer. The Astros are going to start heating up here now that they are near full health.
Tampa Bay Rays (4.6) @ Minnesota Twins (4.5)
Charlie Morton (RHP) @ Jake Odorizzi (RHP)
Over/Under: 9 Moneyline: MIN +110
Pitcher Breakdown: This is a fantastic pitching matchup between Charlie Morton and Jake Odorizzi. Morton checks in with a 2.31 ERA and Odorizzi is rocking a 2.58 ERA. Morton has 113 strikeouts in 93.2 innings, and has only allowed more than two runs in three of his 16 starts. Odorizzi has 87 punch-outs in 80.1 innings and has allowed three or fewer runs in 12 of his 15 outings.
Morton has GPP appeal, but the Twins don’t strike out a ton and they just lit up Blake Snell last night. Odorizzi is where I lean as the matchup is a tad nicer, plus he has a six scoreless showing outing against the Rays where he fanned nine.
Batter Breakdown: Both pitchers have struggled against lefties, so if you’re looking for some stand-alone GPP plays look at Austin Meadows, Brandon Lowe, Ji-Man Choi and Eddie Rosario. Odorizzi’s 48 FB% will eventually catch up to him as he had the same mark last season and allowed 20 homers and 30 the year before. Choi, Meadows and Lowe have HR potential.
In Case You Missed It:
Best Overall Pitcher: Patrick Corbin
Best Value Pitchers: Framber Valdez, Jaime Barria & Zac Gallen
Pitchers I’m feeling: Patrick Corbin, Framber Valdez, Jaime Barria, Mike Minor & Jake Odorizzi
Contrarian GPP option: Matt Boyd & Charlie Morton
Pitchers to fade: Dallas Keuchel & Zac Gallen
Pitchers to pick on: Dario Agrazal, Dallas Keuchel, Daniel Mengden, Jason Vargas & Yu Darvish
Top Overall Hitters: Jeff McNeil, Anthony Rendon, Matt Olson, Marcell Ozuna, Freddie Freeman, Ronald Acuna Jr., Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Mike Trout, Christian Yelich, Alex Bregman, Jose Altuve & Michael Brantley
Best value Hitters (DK): Robinson Cano, Maikel Franco, Tommy Edman, Paul Goldschmidt, Nick Markakis, Justin Upton, Jesus Aguilar, Jose Altuve & Ji-Man Choi
Best value Hitters (FD): Jeff McNeil, Todd Frazier, Scott Kingery, Maikel Franco, Matt Olson, Tommy Edman, Paul Goldschmidt, Paul DeJong, Jose Martinez, Josh Donaldson, Nick Markakis, Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Eugenio Suarez, Yasiel Puig, Shohei Ohtani, Kole Calhoun, J.P. Crawford, Dan Vogelbach, Jesus Aguilar, Jose Altuve, Ji-Man Choi & Brandon Lowe
Home Run Call of the Day: Freddie Freeman
Others HR calls to consider: Rhys Hoskins, Joey Gallo, Marcell Ozuna, Ronald Acuna Jr., Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Mike Trout, Justin Upton, Shohei Ohtani, Yasiel Puig, Dan Vogelbach, Christian Yelich, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, Austin Meadows & Ji-Man Choi
Stack ranks: HOU, PHI, ATL, CHC & MIL
Underrated stack: STL, SEA, LAA & NYM
Bet of the Day: WSH -152
Chris Meaney is a DFS contributor for The Quant Edge, covering fantasy sports. Chris covered NHL, NBA, NFL and MLB as the producer, writer and host at FNTSY Sports Network. He was lead host of the daily live shows, “Fantasy Sports Today” and “Home Ice Advantage.” Chris has written for The Athletic, the Associated Press, the New York Daily News, Fantasy Footballers, NBA Fantasy, Play Picks, Fantrax and more. @chrismeaney.