MLB Game Breakdown | Monday, April 8th

MLB Game Breakdown | Monday, April 8th

Oakland Athletics (5.5) @ Baltimore Orioles (4.6)

Marco Estrada (RHP) @ Andrew Cashner (RHP)

Over/Under: 10 Moneyline: Orioles+120

Pitcher Breakdown: Marco Estrada led MLB with a 55.6 fly ball percentage in 2018 and his fly ball rate is currently sitting at a league-high 73 percent through 16.1 innings in 2019. Estrada has allowed 63 home runs since the start of 2017, including three this season.

Andrew Cashner is also a fly ball pitcher (36 percent in 2018) as he checks in with a 38.7 fly ball rate through his 10 innings. It’s a small sample size this season, but he’s given up one home run, six runs and seven walks through 10 innings. He allowed 25 home runs in 153 innings in 2018. He also has a 82.5 contact percentage for his career.

Batter Breakdown: Khris Davis will be back in the lineup tonight after getting a day off Sunday. Davis led the Athletics with a 48.8 fly ball rate last season and he has five home runs already. The Athletics’ 5.5 team implied total is the second-highest on the main slate.

Trey Mancini and Jonathan Villar are the only Orioles’ to consider as they are both hitting .333 on the season. They’ve combined for six home runs so far and Mancini has a 44.8 fly ball rate through 39 plate appearances.

Washington Nationals (4.5) @ Philadelphia Phillies (5.1)

Anibal Sanchez (RHP) @ Vincent Velasquez (RHP)

Over/Under: 9 Moneyline: Phillies-140

Pitcher Breakdown: Anibal Sanchez will be making his second start of the season, and it’ll be the second time he’s faced Philadelphia. He allowed four runs and four walks in four innings last time out, and he only struck out three. It’s tough for anyone to face a team twice in a week, let alone the Phillies. This is also a tougher environment for Sanchez this time around.

Vincent Velasquez gets the start tonight for the first time this season and it wasn’t a very good spring for him. He allowed nine runs, seven walks and 11 hits over 6.1 innings. Opposing batters hit .379 against him and the Nationals come in have scored 30 runs in their past four games. Velasquez has strikeout potential, but he also has a career 40.6 fly ball rate and 3.53 BB/9. Both home runs and walks have been issues for the Phillies’ pitcher.

Batter Breakdown: Anthony Rendon is hitting .433 with four home runs and 29 total bases so far this season. He’s about as safe as it comes from a cash game perspective. Brian Dozier has been the complete opposite as he’s only hitting .080 on the season with just two hits. He does have some power in his bat and checks in at a very reasonable price on FanDuel.

As mentioned, the Phillies ate up Sanchez in his first start of the season. Like always, everybody is in play here for the Phillies. Maikel Franco is rocking a 26.5 BB% and 5.9 K% so far, and his 10 RBI rank second on the team. Franco, Andrew McCutchen, Jean Segura and J.T. Realmuto stand out as values on FanDuel.

New York Yankees (3.4) @ Justin Verlander (4.2)

Masahiro Tanaka (RHP) @ Justin Verlander (RHP)

Over/Under: 7.5     Moneyline: Astros-157

Pitcher Breakdown: Masahiro Tanaka has been just about perfect in his two starts as he’s only allowed two runs over 12.1 innings. Tanaka has 12 strikeouts over that span and zero walks. Problem is, he’s faced Baltimore and Detroit. He’s a fade against Houston.

Justin Verlander makes his first start of the MLB season in Houston, where he had a 2.84 ERA on 2018. MLB hitters only managed a .192 average over 117.1 home innings against Verlander last season. He has the highest strikeout ceiling on the board and the lineup in New York is not as dangerous as the one presented on Opening Day. Verlander is a strong cash game option and one you should try and build your lineups around.

Batter Breakdown: New York’s 3.4 team implied total is the lowest on the main slate. Gary Sanchez and Clint Frazier are two I’d take shots on in tournaments, but I’d rather side with Verlander despite his high fly ball rate, which sometimes results in home runs.

Michael Brantley remains underpriced as he continues to hit in the cleanup spot for Houston. It’s a great spot to be in as his 23 at-bats with runners on base are tied for the second-most in baseball. Brantley and Carlos Correa are grossly underpriced on FanDuel.

Los Angeles Dodgers (4.1) @ St. Louis Cardinals (4)

Hyun-Jin Ryu (LHP) @ Miles Mikolas (RHP)

Over/Under: 8.5 Moneyline: Cardinals+100

Pitcher Breakdown: Hyun-Jin Ryu’s price tag has caught up to him after two stellar starts. Ryu has 13 strikeouts over 13 innings and has only allowed three runs in his two wins this season. Ryu has proved to be much better at home than on the road, but the Cardinals enter with a 26.7 strikeout rate, which ranks eighth.

Miles Mikolas has been hit early and often so far this season. The Cardinals’ pitcher has given up eight runs on 12 hits over his 10 innings. Four of those 12 hits have been home runs and he has three walks compared to just five strikeouts. Mikolas currently has a 43.2 hard hit rate and 86.3 contact rate. He’s not missing any bats at all.

Batter Breakdown: The Dodgers rank second in home runs (24), runs (84) and RBI (80). Their .307 team average ranks first and they are in a great spot against a struggling Mikolas. Cody Bellinger is complete chalk, but checks in at under $5K on DK. Corey Seager and Justin Turner can complete your Dodgers stack.

The Cardinals’ .157 average against LHP this season ranks 29th and they only have five extra-base hits against southpaws. Marcell Ozuna was St. Louis’ strongest bat last season against left-handed pitchers (.314 AVG & .382 wOBA). Ozuna and Matt Carpenter had a team-high nine home runs against LHP in 2018.

Seattle Mariners (5.2) @ Kansas City Royals (4.9)

Felix Hernandez (RHP) @ Homer Bailey (RHP)

Over/Under: 9.5 Moneyline: Royals+105

Pitcher Breakdown: Felix Hernandez only allowed one earned run in his 2019 MLB debut as he struck out four over 5.1 innings. He has a great shot to pick up a second straight win tonight thanks to a matchup in Kansas City. The Royals rank in the bottom half in terms of runs and average, so there’s an opportunity tonight to roll out Hernandez as a second pitcher on DK.

Homer Bailey gave up zero home runs in his 2019 MLB debut, which is strange considering his name is Homer. Bailey allowed 23 bombs over 106.1 innings last season and 54 percent of the balls hit against him in his opener were in the air. He had a 40.9 hard hit rate last season and he enters with an 80.1 contact percentage for his career.

Batter Breakdown: Seattle continues to lead the league in home runs (27) and runs (85). Domingo Santana, Jay Bruce, Ryon Healy and Mitch Haniger all rank inside the top 10 when it comes to plate appearances with runners in scoring position. These hitters are not priced like they are the hottest in the game, which they are.

The Royals don’t have an offense that you want to stack, even against Felix Hernandez. Whit Merrifield and Adalberto Mondesi are strong hitters atop the order, but there isn’t a lot of greatness that follows.

Atlanta Braves (5.3) @ Colorado Rockies (5.8)

Julio Teheran (RHP) @ Kyle Freeland (LHP)

Over/Under: 10.5   Moneyline: Rockies-123

Pitcher Breakdown: Julio Teheran has an impressive 14 punch-outs over 10 innings, but he’s allowed 10 hits, four runs and five walks. Teheran is missing more bats than normal, but he still has a 40.9 fly ball rate for his career. Colorado is not the place for him, even with the Rockies are struggling at the moment.

Kyle Freeland can be considered in tournaments due to the low price and likely low ownership. Freeland has 15 strikeouts through 11.2 innings and he’s only allowed three runs on five hits. This is his first start at Coors Field this season, but he had a 2.40 ERA there in 2018.

Batter Breakdown: The fear of playing Freeland is that the Braves are very strong against left-handers. Their .269 average ranked third last season and their .334 wOBA against LHP ranked fourth. Ozzie Albies hit .335 with 8 home runs against southpaws last season and Nick Markakis hit .284 against them. Albies is hitting .556 against lefties this season and Markakis has a .375 average.

David Dahl is the latest member of Colorado to suffer an injury. Keep an eye on Trevor Story who left last night’s game as well. If both are out of the lineup, Teheran may not be as bad as a play as one would think.

San Diego Padres (3.4) @ San Francisco Giants (3.7)

Eric Lauer (LHP) @ Madison Bumgarner (LHP)

Over/Under: 7.5 Moneyline: Giants-125

Pitcher Breakdown: Eric Lauer will be making his second start of the MLB season against San Francisco. As predicted, his second start of the MLB season did not go like his first. He allowed four runs on nine hits, including two homers. He was great against SF as he tossed six scoreless innings, but he only came away with three strikeouts. He doesn’t have a high ceiling, but the Giants don’t have a lot of power.

Madison Bumgarner racked up nine strikeouts in his first start of the season against San Diego, so don’t be surprised if he duplicates that performance. Bumgarner has 13 strikeouts and is coming off a scoreless showing against the Dodgers where he only allowed five hits. He’s a strong option tonight, despite a low chance of a win.

Batter Breakdown: The Padres’ 3.4 team implied total is tied for the lowest on the main slate. They are in a tough environment against a tough pitcher in Bumgarner. It’s hard to feel good about any of their bats, but if you’re looking for some upside…Hunter Renfroe is your man.

Things are a bit bleaker in San Francisco. The Giants rank 29th in runs, 30th in B%, 26th in average and 27th in OBP. There’s nothing to see here.

Milwaukee Brewers (4.6) @ Los Angeles Angels (4.5)

Jhoulys Chacin (RHP) @ Trevor Cahill (RHP)

Over/Under: 9 Moneyline: Angels -100

Pitcher Breakdown: Jhoulys Chacin has allowed five walks and five runs through two starts (10.2 IP), but he’s picked up two wins. That’ll happen when you have a high powered offense behind you. The matchup and ballpark are good reasons to consider Chacin against his former team.

Trevor Cahill is in a very tough spot tonight against the heavy hitting Brewers. Cahill’s 75.9 contact percentage is the highest it’s been since 2015 and he has a 48.6 fly ball rate so far. Cahill had a 39 percent hard-hit rate last season and he’s not missing many bats so far as an Angel.

Batter Breakdown: Lorenzo Cain, Christian Yelich and Ryan Braun are obvious candidates, but consider Travis Shaw, Jesus Agular and Mike Moustakas. All three have power and all three are hitting under .200 to start the season. It’s only a matter of time.

I can’t imagine the Brewers pitching to Mike Trout who finished 6-for-11 with 5 HR, 9 RBI, 5 R & 6 BB in his four-game series with Texas. He’s slashing .393/.581/.1.000 through 10 games. Andrelton Simmons leads baseball with 16 at-bats with runners in scoring position, thanks to Trout.

In Case You Missed It:

Best Overall Pitcher: Justin Verlander

Best Value Pitcher: Felix Hernandez & Julio Teheran (contrarian GPP)

Pitchers I’m feeling: Justin Verlander, Madison Bumgarner & Hyun-Jin Ryu

Best Overall Hitters: Mike Trout, Rhys Hoskins, Cody Bellinger, Khris Davis, Anthony Rendon & Christian Yelich

Best Value Hitters: Michael Brantley, Nick Markakis, Andrelton Simmons, Ozzie Albies (FD) & Brian Dozier (FD)

Home Run Call of the Day: Trey Mancini

Stacks: Phillies, Dodgers, Mariners & Brewers

Bet of the Day: Astros-157