Only six games on the slate MLB DFS Saturday night but it’s not short of good matchups to target. Despite a low run total to open for the Nationals, I’ll be looking to load up on them in a much better matchup than their team total offers. As always, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @SBuchanan24.
St. Louis Cardinals (3.5) @ Chicago Cubs (3.5)
Jack Flaherty (RHP) vs. Jon Lester (LHP)
Over/Under: 7 Moneyline: Cubs -110
Pitcher Breakdown: I’m surprised how low the total is for this game as I’m not really looking toward either pitcher in this game. Sure, the winds blowing in at Wrigley help tonight but both pitchers have their issues here. Flaherty has been hit really hard on the road and has a .365 wOBA with a 4.41 xFIP.
Lester has been way too shaky from a fantasy perspective that I’m not looking to target him either. He’s allowed at least four runs in three of his last five starts and four home runs in that span.
Hitter Breakdown: One thing this Cardinals lineup can boast is power against lefties. Harrison Bader is one of my favorite value plays on this slate and he’ll be in my lineup without a doubt. Against lefties, Bader sports a .351 wOBA and a .294 ISO. His mix of power and speed at a low price makes him worth a look. Jose Martinez and Paul DeJong are two other bats to consider.
Both sides of the plate have been hitting Flaherty on the road so you could really consider stacking the Cubs in this spot. Anthony Rizzo has a massive .303 ISO against righties while Willson Contreras checks in with a .271 ISO. I think this game easily hits the over and would not shy away due to the low total.
Colorado Rockies (4) @ New York Mets (4)
Jon Gray (RHP) vs. Steven Matz (LHP)
Over/Under: 8 Moneyline: Mets -104
Pitcher Breakdown: This is a really REALLY good spot for Matz. I think he’s in such a good spot and I’m hoping he’ll go overlooked. I won’t hold my breath on that but we can all dream, right? At home, Matz owns a .292 wOBA with a 3.50 xFIP and only two of his 12 home runs allowed. The Rockies are one of the WORST teams offensively on the road and even against lefties have a .283 wOBA, a .179 ISO and the second-highest K% at 30.4%.
As for Gray, he’s pitched better at Coors than he has on the road. Lefties have especially hit him hard on the road to the tune of a .363 wOBA and a 4.16 xFIP.
Hitter Breakdown: I mentioned the part about lefties against Gray because we have a few guys to target in the lineup. Michael Conforto is the first to come to mind as he has a .402 wOBA and a .276 ISO against righties. Dominic Smith is hitting righties a lot better than I realized and has a .457 wOBA and a .232 ISO.
The Rockies I’m mostly staying away from. I’m really going to be going heavy on Matz so wouldn’t make a lot of sense to be taking the Rox. Trevor Story would be the only bat I’d consider in non-Matz lineups. Story is on an absolute tear right now and has a .422 wOBA with a .179 ISO against lefties on the road.
Los Angeles Dodgers (4.7) @ San Francisco Giants (3.4)
Rich Hill (LHP) vs. Jeff Samardzija (RHP)
Over/Under: 8 Moneyline: Dodgers -190
Pitcher Breakdown: This game is my personal worst nightmare. Two pitchers I can’t stand rostering, Rich Hill and Jeff Samardzija. Samardzija I cross off immediately because I think he’s the biggest fraud in baseball. That’s the hard-hitting analysis you won’t get anywhere else, folks.
Hill I’m never a fan of either but I have to admit when he’s pitching well and in a good matchup. On the road, he boasts a .286 wOBA with a 2.48 xFIP. The Giants have been nothing special at home against lefties and have just a .280 wOBA with a .119 ISO and a 22.7 K%. If you’re not going to pay up for Max Scherzer, Hill makes a lot of sense in this matchup.
Hitter Breakdown: On the surface, Samardzija’s numbers don’t look all that bad. Don’t fall for the trap. He has a 4.83 SIERA and a 5.06 xFIP, the fraud. Anyone you want to target on the Dodgers, I’m so down with the idea. Joc Pederson, Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, Justin Turner all top my list of Dodgers bats I want to jam in tonight. Essentially, if they’re playing, I’m interested.
For the Giants, I’m not going out of my way to take anyone here. Despite my disdain for Hill, I have to respect the fact that he’s done really well on the road and this Giants team simply can’t hit lefties, especially at home. Tyler Austin is the only bat I’d consider and you’d get him at really low ownership. Austin has a .410 wOBA and a .298 ISO against lefties this season and could take advantage of Hill allowing all seven home runs to righties.
Oakland Athletics (5.6) @ Texas Rangers (5)
Chris Bassitt (RHP) vs. Adrian Sampson (RHP)
Over/Under: 10.5 Moneyline: Athletics -125
Pitcher Breakdown: As seen by our Line Movement Tool this game has the highest total on the slate at 10.5 runs. Not exactly a game you want to target pitching…or is it? In tournaments, I wouldn’t hate the idea of taking a shot with Sampson. Over his last three starts, he’s faced the Mariners and Royals and has pitched 17 1/3 innings allowing five runs 20 hits while striking out 22. He’s not someone that will throw seven shutout innings but this A’s team isn’t exactly crushing the ball as of late. In fact, over the past week, they own a 27.3 K%, the fourth highest in the league.
Hitter Breakdown: I like the Rangers in this spot and like their lefties the most. Bassitt on the road against lefties has allowed a .333 wOBA with a 4.35 xFIP and five of his eight home runs allowed. With that in mind, you could make a really unique stack that would cover a wide range of guys in their lineup. Shin-Soo Choo, Danny Santana, Rougned Odor and Asdrubal Cabrera could be the way to make that stack unique.
If you think I’m crazy about Sampson and want to go in the other direction, the righties are the way to attack him. Khris Davis, Matt Chapman and Mark Canha is where I’d be looking to go here. As I said though, I’ll be focusing a lot more on Sampson in tournaments than I will the A’s bats. For what it’s worth, Sampson has a .362 wOBA and a 4.03 xFIP against righties at home so this isn’t a slam dunk spot for Sampson.
Seattle Mariners (4.6) @ Los Angeles Angels (5)
Yusei Kikuchi (LHP) vs. Dillon Peters (LHP)
Over/Under: 9.5 Moneyline: Angels -120
Pitcher Breakdown: I have absolutely, positively zero interest in Kikuchi in this matchup. As if the Angels with the lowest K% in the league against lefties wasn’t enough, he’s allowed 10 runs on 20 hits through 6 2/3 innings in his last two starts, one of which was against this Angels team. As far as I know, it’s unclear if Peters will actually pitch this game as a starter or serve as an opener. I’m not going to mess with this so I’m ignoring it completely.
Hitter Breakdown: The Angels have some decent power against lefties, headlined by Mike Trout and joined by Albert Pujols and Kole Calhoun. I really like stacking the three of these guys together and think it makes for a unique mini stack. If you want to add one more, Kevan Smith is another option if he starts over Jonathan Lucroy.
I’m not really sure what the plans are for the Angels with pitching, so it’s hard to gauge who to target for the Mariners. If Peters is a starter, Tim Beckham is a solid punting option while you could also use Edwin Encarnacion and Domingo Santana. All three of these guys boast some strong power against lefties, headlined by Santana with a massive .302 ISO.
Washington Nationals (3.8) @ San Diego Padres (3.3)
Max Scherzer (RHP) vs. Eric Lauer (LHP)
Over/Under: 7 Moneyline: Nationals -169
Pitcher Breakdown: You look at this 3.8 run total for the Nationals and might consider pitching Lauer. Absolutely not, I don’t agree with that total at all. I realize he’s been much better at home but the Nationals are a good hitting club against lefties. I wasn’t considering Lauer at all and if people will be flocking to him based on this run total, I like the Nationals even more.
Scherzer is in a fantastic spot against the Padres and he has to be considered the top option on this slate. Scherzer hasn’t been his usual dominant self and lefties have been a big reason for that. Lucky for us, the Padres don’t have many lefties in their lineup so using Scherzer is very much in play. Against righties, Scherzer has been dominant, sporting a .241 wOBA with a 2.11 xFIP and a 37.6 K%.
Hitter Breakdown: I’m going to be stacking the Nationals tonight so if they don’t perform well and you listened to me, just know I’m here with you. Anthony Rendon is the obvious choice to start your stack and rightfully so. Brian Dozier is another one to add as he’s smashing lefties finally and has a .463 wOBA and a .318 ISO. Others I want in my stack would be Kurt Suzuki, Howie Kendrick and Juan Soto.
I don’t want the Padres bats. Thanks.
Best Overall Pitcher: Max Scherzer
Best Value Pitcher: Steven Matz
Best Overall Hitters: Cody Bellinger, Anthony Rendon, Trevor Story, Mike Trout, Joc Pederson
Best Value Hitters: Harrison Bader, Brian Dozier, Tim Beckham, Tyler Austin, Dominic Smith
Home Run Call of the Day: Harrison Bader
Stacks: Nationals, Dodgers, Angels
Bet of the Day: Mets -104