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For the time being, we will post our MLB Content Schedule here at the top of the article. It’ll be updated with links when each article is posted, so check back throughout the day!
- Cash Game Breakdown – You’re reading it!
- The Early Bird – Conquer today’s Early Slates!
- Bullpen Coach – Everything you need to know about each team’s bullpen.
- Hitting Coach – A deep dive into the top hitters (& fades) on today’s slate.
- Pitching Coach – An in-depth breakdown of today’s starting pitchers.
- Cheat Sheet – A snapshot of the top plays at each position & salary level.
- GPP Breakdown – We use game theory, & advanced stats to uncover tonight’s low-owned studs.
- MLB NOW Livestream – A daily video show breaking down tonight’s entire slate.
- MLB Summary – A summary of what we discussed in today’s Coaching Sessions & on the livestream.
- Ownership Projections
- Fantasy Baseball Elite Podcasts (Mans/Flowers/DraftCheat/Vlad)
- MLB Chat Room
- Daily Projections & Optimizer
- Splits Hub
- Umpire Factors
- The Opening Line
Thursday, July 4th
It is a special edition of the Cash Game Breakdown on this holiday. With the holiday, we have a split slate with both sites all over the place with how the contests are broken up. Since both sites had different angles of splitting up the slate, I felt it was best to not do the usual rankings. Instead I broke down each game on what I feel are the best plays. The catcher position lacks many quality options so if playing Draftkings it best to try and punt that position.
A special message to my wife who celebrates a birthday today. She is an incredibly tolerant woman who would never read this but deserves special recognition.
We have a special early Livestream today so be sure to check that out to get ready for today’s slate. I will do what I can to update with value plays during the day as needed. The weather is also a big question mark that we need to keep track of.
For more info and updated forecast, please check out our MLB Weather Center.
Miami Marlins @ Washington Nationals will have a chance for storms most of the day. It is early start that should lessen the chances of any potential issues.
Cleveland Indians @ Kansas City Royals has storms possible as well that are more likely to be an issue earlier in the game. A delay is possible based on the current timing.
Milwaukee Brewers @ Cincinnati Reds is just another spot to watch. It doesn’t appear to be a washout but delays are possible.
Detroit Tigers @ Chicago White Sox will once again have storm chances. The story we have seen for the last 7 weeks in you live in Chicagoland area.
Chicago Cubs @ Pittsburgh Pirates has the same stupid issues as everyone else.
Los Angeles Angels @ Texas Rangers will have early afternoon storm chances but it should clear out for the game.
- LAD -220
- WAS -181
- ATL -152
- TEX -133
- MIN -127
Highest Run Expectancy
- TEX 6.01
- WA 5.85
- ATL 5.64
- TOR 5.29
- BOS 5.21
Lowest Run Expectancy
- SD 3.15
- MIA 4.15
- PHI 4.36
- CIN 4.38
- DET 4.49
Today's Pitchers Grid
(2018 Data) (Click here for more park factors!)
1) Great American Ballpark –18.6% above average in runs, 20.3% above average in HR’s, 6.8% above average in 2B.
2) SunTrust Park –16.3% above average in runs, 28.0% above average in HR’s, 25.2% above average in 2B.
3) Guarantee Rate Field –12.8% above average in runs, 30.9% above average in HR’s.
4) PNC Park –17.1% above average in runs, 2.7% above average in HR’s, 28.7% above average in 2B, 46.3% above average in 3B.
5) Globe Life Park –4.5% above average in runs, 10.2% above average in HR’s, 32.0% above average in 3B.
Things To Target (Against)
1) Reynaldo Lopez, RHP, White Sox – 5.68 xFIP, 2.19 HR/9, .396 wOBA vs. LHH, .355 wOBA vs. RHH, 4.98 xFIP in the last 30 days.
2) Zach Plesac, RHP, Indians – 5.13 xFIP, 1.91 HR/9, 5.48 xFIP in the last 30 days
3) Michael Wacha, RHP, Cardinals – 4.95 xFIP, 1.97 HR/9, .407 wOBA vs. RHH
4) JA Happ, LHP, Yankees – 4.95 xFIP, 2.13 HR/9, 5.52 xFIP in the last 30 days
5) Tanner Anderson, RHP, A’s – 2.04 HR/9, .473 wOBA vs. LHH
6) Elieser Hernandez, RHP, Marlins – .406 wOBA vs. LHH
7) Jordan Lyles, RHP, Pirates – .376 wOBA vs. LHH, 5.05 xFIP in the last 30 days
8) Hector Velasquez, RHP, Red Sox – 4.80 xFIP, .341 wOBA vs. RHH
Click here for our Stolen Base Target Tool. I strongly recommend checking it out to find a value play or to properly assess how likely a player on tonight’s slate is to steal.
The hottest hitters at each position.
|10||Vladimir Guerrero Jr.||TOR||161||698||48||123||111||4||12.3||15.80||0.290||0.313||0.311||0.401||0.601||0.419||166|
|13||Ronald Acuna Jr.||ATL||82||360||24||72||52||17||13.6||23.60||0.313||0.311||0.283||0.394||0.596||0.412||157|
|16||Frank Schwindel||- - -||64||259||14||44||43||2||6.2||15.80||0.264||0.348||0.326||0.371||0.591||0.403||152|
|17||Fernando Tatis Jr.||SDP||130||546||42||99||97||25||11.4||28.00||0.328||0.324||0.282||0.364||0.611||0.403||156|
|22||Kyle Schwarber||- - -||113||471||32||76||71||1||13.6||27.00||0.288||0.306||0.266||0.374||0.554||0.392||145|
Batter v Pitcher
For more, visit our BvP Matchup Page!
C – John Hicks – Tigers
1B – Jose Abreu – White Sox, Joey Votto – Reds
SS – Andrelton Simmons -Angels
OF – Wil Myers – Padres, Corey Dickerson – Pirates, Avisail Garcia – Rays
MIA @ WAS
Elieser Hernandez ($7,300 FD & $6,700 DK) has been solid in his first 4 starts which is impressive considering he had to face the same teams in back to back starts. Hernandez has allowed 3 runs or less in every start with at least 6 K’s which is very solid at his price point. He has struggled with LHH’s allowing a .406 wOBA so that is where you want to attack him.
Anibal Sanchez ($8,500 FD & $8,300 DK) has gotten better over the last two months. He has thrown at least 6 innings in 5 of his last 6 starts and allowed just 9 ER’s total in those 6 games. The swinging strike rate has never been great so you get some up and down strikeout totals at times.
Marlins – PASS
Nationals – OF Juan Soto – 398 wOBA vs. LHH and a. 516 wOBA over the last week
CLE @ KC
Zach Plesac ($9,000 FD & $8,200 DK) is not going to be successful MLB pitcher long-term unless he develops a 3rd pitch. He has allowed 9 HR’s in his last 5 starts. Plesac has a 1.62 difference in ERA vs. xFIP so that screams regression which happened in his last start. The Royals offense is not very threatening but still can’t use Plesac.
Homer Bailey ($7,100 FD & $7,200 DK) has been very inconsistent this season. It is still far better than we have seen but hard to figure out which version of Bailey will show up in any given start. Bailey did have 7 shutout innings in a previous start vs. the Royals. I do find the Indians lineup well below average so using Bailey isn’t bad but don’t love it.
Indians – 1B Carlos Santana – .402 wOBA vs. RHP, OF/1B Bobby Bradley – 24 HR’s in 67 games at AAA
Royals – 3B- Hunter Dozier .402 wOBA vs. RHP & .382 wOBA at Home, OF Whit Merrifield – .382 wOBA vs. RHP
DET @ CHW
Matthew Boyd ($10,100 FD & $10,600 DK) sits 2nd in xFIP, 4th best in swinging strike rate and highest K% rate of all the pitchers on the slate. The White Sox have the 2nd highest K% rate vs. LHP since June 1st. The price tag isn’t cheap but Boyd has a nice match-up and a very solid option
Reynaldo Lopez ($6,600 FD & $5,600 DK) is an interesting decision to be made on this slate. He has been one of the worst pitchers in baseball this season as noted in the pitchers to target section. Lopez has dominated the Tigers this season with 22K’s in 12 innings this season which is unusual considering his mediocre swinging strike rate and K% rate. The cheap price feels worth the risk against a Tigers team who has the highest K% rate, 3rd lowest ISO and 2nd lowest wOBA vs. RHP since June 1st.
Tigers – (If hedging against Lopez) OF Nick Castellanos – .372 wOBA on the road and .417 wOBA over the last week, 3B Jeimer Candelario .442 wOBA since his promotion, 1B Miguel Cabrera – .367 wOBA since June 1st, OF Jacoby Jones .374 wOBA since June 1st, SS Niko Goodrum if leading off
White Sox – 1B – Jose Abreu 12-24 vs. Boyd
MIL @ CIN
Brandon Woodruff ($9,800 FD & $9,400 DK) can rack up some impressive strikeout numbers with a 29.1% K rate. He has gone at least 6 innings and has 6 at least 6 K’s in his last 5 starts. Woodruff had a 12 K game over 7 innings in his previous start vs. the Reds. Cincinnati has the 4th lowest wOBA vs. RHP since June 1st so despite the ballpark Woodruff is in a decent spot.
Luis Castillo ($9,400 FD & $10,000 DK) has not been great over the last month including a couple of rough starts vs. the Brewers. The big difference to note is that those games were in Milwaukee where the Brewers have been a different team. Castillo also has been better at home with just a .160 avg against. We are seeing a bit cheaper of price this time out for Castillo and makes a solid option.
Brewers (GPP Plays) – OF Christian Yelich .479 wOBA vs. RHP, 1B Eric Thames .389 wOBA vs. RHP, C Yasmani Grandal .372 wOBA vs. RHP, 2B Mike Moustakas .371 wOBA vs. RHP
Reds (Low Owned Stack Potential) 1B Joey Votto – Reds 5 for 6 with 2HR’s vs. Woodruff and .398 wOBA over the last 30 days, 3B Eugenio Suarez – 4 HR’s in his last 4 games, OF Yasiel Puig .437 wOBA over the last days, OF Jesse Winker .396 wOBA over the last 30 days.
CHC @ PIT
Jose Quintana ($7,700 FD & $7,400 DK) rebounded with a strong start his last time out after a rather dreadful month. The Pirates have struggled vs. LHP this season with the 4th lowest ISO, 3rd lowest wOBA, lowest BB% though it has been better the last month. Quintana is not an elite pitcher but still a quality one who can get on a good run which seems to be coming. He should help the Cubs avoid the sweep.
Jordan Lyles ($7,300 FD & $7,800 DK) has regressed as the season has gone on. He has allowed at least 3 runs in each of his last 5 starts. The Cubs normally hit very well in PNC park so this feels like a game they could bust out. I have no interest in Lyles.
Cubs – 1B Anthony Rizzo – .398 wOBA vs. RHP, C Willson Contreras – .376 wOBA vs. RHP, OF Jason Heyward – .375 wOBA vs. RHP and .458 wOBA over the last 14 days, 3B David Bote – .363 wOBA vs. RHP
Pirates – OF Bryan Reynolds – .406 wOBA vs. LHP, 1B Josh Bell – .365 wOBA vs. LHP and 60 XBH’s on the season
MIN @ OAK
Jose Berrios ($10,500 FD & $11,000 DK) has been better on the road this season than last but not quite the same pitcher than we see at home. The A’s can be feisty at home and the price tag is high. I can’t see paying the price.
Tanner Anderson ($5,600 FD & $5,700 DK) is not ready to pitcher in the majors after a horrific stint at AAA where he had a 6.26 ERA over 11 games. He was particularly bad vs. LHH where he allowed a .356 avg against. Anderson has allowed a .473 wOBA vs. LHH so nothing has changed with his promotion.
Twins (Top Stack) – SS Jorge Polanco – .432 wOBA vs. RHP and .406 wOBA on the road, C Jason Castro – .383 wOBA vs. RHP and .404 wOBA on the road, OF Max Kepler – .379 wOBA vs. RHP, OF – Eddie Rosario – .350 wOBA vs. RHP, OF Nelson Cruz – .376 wOBA vs. RHP and .391 wOBA on the road, C – Mitch Garver .473 wOBA on the road, OF Miguel Sano – .432 wOBA on the road
A’s – PASS
STL @ SEA
Michael Wacha ($6,800 FD & $6,100 DK) has struggled for most the season but has shown some signs of improvement in 3 of his last 4 starts. Those good starts could be a product of the competition as he has faced some struggling lineups. Wacha has allowed a .407 wOBA vs. RHH and given up 16 HR’s in 73 innings. The price is low but I would avoid him.
Tommy Milone ($6,700 FD & $7,800 DK) is putting up some respectable numbers after years of struggling with giving up HR’s. He doesn’t start the games but has gone at least 5 innings in his last 5 games as the primary pitcher. Milone has not allowed more than 3 runs in any of his 8 games pitched this season. With the Cardinals have been amazingly bad over the last month in the hitting department so not impossible to use Milone. I would only consider it on FD and the DK price is too high.
Cardinals – OF Jose Martine – .445 wOBA vs. LHP, 1B Paul Goldschmidt – .366 wOBA vs. LHP (Price is too cheap), SS Paul DeJong – .371 wOBA vs. LHP, OF Tyler O’Neill – 1.384 OPS vs. LHP at AAA
Mariners – 1B Dan Vogelbach – .423 wOBA vs. RHP, OF Domingo Santana – .362 wOBA at Home, 1B Austin Nola – .935 OPS at AAA
NYY @ TB
JA Happ ($7,400 FD & $7,000 DK) is probably disappointed in his results this season. It has not gone great and you can tell at times his frustration with a quick hook. The Rays do have the 2nd lowest ISO and 8th lowest wOBA vs. LHP since June 1st as their offense struggled. I don’t think I will be attacking Happ but will avoiding him as well.
Yonny Chirinos ($6,800 FD & $8,700 DK) is priced way to high on DK. He has racked up 5 straight quality starts but those haven’t been huge point totals as the strikeouts are not great. The Yankees have been very good vs. RHP even with all the injuries. I don’t think Chirinos is worth the risk.
Yankees – SS Didi Gregorius – .407 wOBA vs. RHP, 2B Gleyber Torres – .387 wOBA vs. RHP and .410 wOBA vs. RHP
Rays – 3B Yandy Diaz – .408 wOBA vs. LHH, OF Tommy Pham – .391 wOBA vs. LHH, 2B Mike Brosseau – 1.147 OPS vs LHP in AAA
BOS @ TOR
Marcus Stroman ($7,100 FD & $7,600 DK) is not 100% to make this start with a pectoral issue. He has been good in two starts vs. the Red Sox allowing just 1 run over 12 innings though he has walked 7 which is unusual. Stroman is guy I don’t mind taking a shot on when facing a weak hitting team but not comfortable doing so in this situation.
Hector Velazquez ($5,500 DK & $5,000 FD) is definitely cheap but isn’t likely to get beyond at 5 innings at best and doesn’t provide much strikeout potential. I will pass
Red Sox – 3B Rafael Devers – .404 wOBA on the road and .405 wOBA vs. RHP, OF JD Martinez .368 wOBA vs. RHP, OF Mookie Betts – .396 wOBA vs. RHP,
Blue Jays – OF Lourdes Gurriel – .382 wOBA vs. RHP, .450 wOBA in the last 30 days and .426 wOBA at home, 2B Cavan Biggio – .382 wOBA vs. RHP, 1B Justin Smoak – .381 wOBA vs. RHP
PHI @ ATL
Zack Eflin ($8,400 FD & $8,100 DK) has been respectable yet unspectacular this season. He has been better vs. RHH than LHH. The Braves don’t strikeout much and the midlevel price makes Eflin rather easy to pass on.
Mike Soroka ($8,800 FD & $9,000 DK) is almost always going to be solid. He has allowed more than just 3 ER’s in one start season. Soroka has allowed 1 ER or less in 10 of his 14 starts this season. The biggest weakness is the lack of strikeouts but he normally goes at least 6 innings every time out. Soroka doesn’t provide great upside but is a safe option in cash games.
Phillies – PASS
Braves – 1B Freddie Freeman – .412 wOBA vs. RHP, .419 wOBA over the last 30 days and .395 wOBA at home, OF Austin Riley – .422 wOBA at home, 3B Josh Donaldson .415 wOBA at home, 2B Ozzie Albies – .373 wOBA at home and .401 wOBA over the last 30 days, OF Ronald Acuna – .419 wOBA over the last 30 days
LAA @ TEX
Griffin Canning ($8,000 FD & $8,700 DK) is in a tough spot in this ballpark as HR’s have been a problem for him. He is getting a couple extra days off but faces a team that is top 5 in ISO and 6th in wOBA at home this season. Canning could have a good outing but I would avoid him.
Lance Lynn ($9,300 FD & $9,500 DK) has been quite the surprise this season. He does have two respectable outings vs. the Angels but only has 7 K’s in 12 1/3 innings this season. The lack of strikeouts vs. Lynn makes it tough to pay this price along with the inspiration the Angels are playing with after the loss of a teammate.
Angels – OF Mike Trout – 8 HR’s in 12 games vs. the Rangers along with being the best player in the game, OF Shohei Ohtani – .486 wOBA over the last 30 days
Rangers – OF Joey Gallo – .498 wOBA at home and .429 wOBA vs. RHP , OF Shin-Soo Choo .398 wOBA at home and .395 wOBA vs. RHP, OF Willie Calhoun .418 wOBA vs. RHP
SD @ LAD
Dinelson Lamet ($5,500 FD & $7,100) returns from the DL after a long road back from Tommy John surgery. He has some nasty tough who can rack up strikeouts but has really struggled vs LHH in his career allowing a .364 wOBA. This is a real bad match-up for him along with likely being closely monitored with his pitch count.
Hyun-Jin Ryu ($10,800 FD $11,100 DK) has been one of the best pitchers in the league this season and you can ignore that Coors Field game last time out. He has allowed just 6 ER’s in 8 home starts this season while averaging over 7 innings per start. This isn’t an easy spot despite all of his success this season.
Padres – 3B Manny Machado – .529 wOBA vs. LHP, .442 wOBA over the last 30 day and .422 wOBA on the road, SS Fernando Tatis – .488 wOBA vs. LHP, .454 wOBA over the last 30 days and .438 wOBA on the road, OF Hunter Renfroe – .483 wOBA vs. LHP and .376 wOBA on the road
Dodgers – OF Cody Bellinger – .478 wOBA vs. RHP, .492 wOBA at home, OF Joc Pederson – .384 wOBA vs. RHP and .406 wOBA at home, 2B Max Muncy – .375 wOBA vs. RHP and .407 wOBA over the last 30 days