For the time being, we will post our DFS MLB Content Schedule here at the top of the article. We will update it with links to each piece when it is LIVE so check back throughout the day:
Cash Game Breakdown –The article you are currently reading.
Bullpen Coach – Full breakdown of everything you need to know about each teams bullpen.
Hitting Coach – A deep dive about the top hitters & fades for today’s MLB slate.
Pitching Coach – In-depth breakdown of today’s starting pitchers
DFS MLB Cheatsheet – A quick guide to the top plays at each position and salary level.
GPP Writeup – Using experience, game theory & advanced stats to uncover low owned stars.
MLB Now Livestream – Daily video show breaking down the players, matchups & slate.
MLB Summary – A quick summary of the articles, shows & coaching sessions from today.
Today’s Coaching Sessions
All sessions take place in the MLB Chat Room
- Bullpen Coach (Phil Backert) – 9am ET
- Pitching Coach (DraftCheat) – OFF Today
- Hitting Coach (Vlad Sedler) – 4pm ET
Also Be Sure To Bookmark:
The Opening Line –Corey Parson & Benny Ricciardi get you ready for today in sports
The thing about baseball is that every time you feel like you’ve just seen it all, something or someone comes along and makes your jaw drop. There were a number of things over the weekend that had me saying “wow” including Fernando Tatis Jr tagging up on a pop out to second and Derek Dietrich getting hit over and over and over. Seriously, the Brewers hit Dietrich six times in their series this weekend.
The best thing that I saw this weekend though was the St. Louis Cardinals fans welcoming back 1B Albert Pujols. Pujols got a three-minute standing ovation on Friday before in his first at-bat at Busch Stadium as a visiting player. Then on Saturday, Pujols went yard and received a curtain call from the Cardinals fans again. I thought this was incredibly cool of the Cardinals fans, something that is so rare in sports today. Just because a player leaves your city doesn’t mean you have to stop being a fan. There is just too much of that these days and with the it being so rare for a player to stay with one team his entire career, no reason to be a hater. Remember, the real loser here are the Los Angeles Angels who paid Pujols $240 million for the back-half of his career.
Anyways, let’s get to tonight’s action. It’s a relatively light Monday evening in DFS MLB with only seven games on the docket tonight. This is one of those “tweener” slates where there are technically enough games for a cash game player pool but that relies heavily on weather, lineups and which teams are playing. There is some rain storm in the Cleveland area so right away we might be shaving off our pool for tonight.
The pitching is plentiful though here as we have a couple of studs in Clayton Kershaw and Lucas Giolito on the bump. We also have a couple of good matchup plays in Jon Gray and CC Sabathia, neither of which will set us back a lot of salary. We also have a couple of my mid-tier specials that I have been talking a lot about on the SiriusXM show recently and thus I am not worried about pitching for cash games.
Hitting is another thing altogether. Sure, it’s easy to find runs and homeruns these days but there are some good offenses that have been struggling coming into tonight’s slate. The Phillies for instance just can’t seem to get it together. They have lost seven straight and are hitting just .210 with a .109 ISO over that time. The Cubs got a win on Sunday but have also struggled to put up runs lately hitting just .220 with a .131 ISO.
Tonight, is not the best cash game slate we will see all season, but we cannot let that sway us. We have been running extremely hot and I strongly believe that is as much about the approach as the players we are using. We are going to take in the projections, see where they are pointing our competition and then adjust off of that a bit. We are also going to continue crushing these single-entry contests where the MME players have their balls chopped off.
Let’s get to it, then. Here is the DFS MLB Cash Game Breakdown for Monday, June 24th!
Kansas City Royals at Cleveland Indians –As of this writing, there is a dark green rain storm that is expected to hit right at Progressive Field at the very time this game is supposed to start. The good news is there isn’t much rain before and the storm clears out later so they would be able to adjust it to get it in.
For more info and updated forecast, please check out our MLB Weather Center
1) New York Yankees: -150
2) Boston Red Sox: -165
3) Cleveland Indians: -160
4) Colorado Rockies: -130
5) Los Angeles Dodgers: -130
Highest Run Expectancy
1) New York Yankees – 6.30
2) Chicago Cubs – 6.17
3) Atlanta Braves – 5.83
4) Cleveland Indians – 5.46
5) Philadelphia Phillies – 5.21
Lowest Run Expectancy
1) Arizona Diamondbacks – 3.75
2) San Francisco Giants – 3.81
3) Chicago White Sox – 3.94
4) Colorado Rockies – 4.19
5) Toronto Blue Jays – 4.20
Today's Pitchers Grid
|Name||Team||IP||ERA||BABIP||FIP||xFIP||SIERA||GB%||LD%||FB%||F-Strike%||Zone%||K%||SwStr%||Swing%||BB%||Contact%||O-Swing%||LOB%||Soft%||Med%||Hard%||HR/9||FA% (pfx)||vFA (pfx)||FA-Z (pfx)|
TODAY’S BEST PITCHERS
1) Clayton Kershaw, LHP, Dodgers ($11,000/$10,400) – The only problem with Clayton Kershaw tonight is that there are only seven games, thus 14 pitchers going tonight. That forces his price up a bit here to $11K on FD and $10.4 on DK. Kershaw isn’t quite what he used to be but in fairness, he wasn’t really human before. The major differences in Kershaw are less fastball velocity, he used to be 93-94 and now rarely cracks 91 MPH. Then there is his slider movement which I strongly don’t believe is his fault. We all know there is something with the baseballs this season and that has led to a lot less movement on offspeed pitches. These are pitches that involve using the seams to generate rotation and movement and we just aren’t seeing the same break on curves and sliders as we have in the past. He’s still getting fourth most armside run on that slider but its only generating 29.46% whiffs which is only 71stin MLB. So, he’s still good, he’s just not quite 11K good. Still, if you’re looking for that one pitcher that you just know will give you a strong effort without getting beat up, that is Kershaw. The Diamondbacks are a pesky team especially against LHP but they own the second worst ISO at .107 over the last week and Kershaw has owned them over his career to the tune of .213 BA and .313 wOBA.
2) Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP, Red Sox ($8400/$8700) – Remember in the intro (if you actually read it) how I said there were some of my favorite underrated pitchers going today/ Yeah, that is E-Rod. You guys should know by now that every metric we look at to judge pitcher performance, Eduardo Rodriguez stands out in. Granted, his ERA is only 4.71 but that is very misleading. E-Rod owns a 65% first strike rate which is good, a 3.87 xFIP which is very good, a strikeout percentage of 25.2% which is good, 12.0% swinging strike rate which is well above average and a 34.4% O-Swing% which is second best of the slate (Greinke). The White Sox are solid against LHP but lack power and extra base ability. Chicago has hit just 15 HR’s against LHP which is second least in MLB and own just a .140 ISO which is fifth worst in MLB vs LHP. E-Rod has averaged 37.2 FD points per game and has pitched into the sixth inning in each of his last five starts. It’s nearly a $3K price drop from Kershaw which is quite a bit of additional bats for us here tonight.
3) Jon Gray, RHP, Rockies ($8500/$9800) – Gray made a rare relief appearance in the 17-inning game against the Padres back on June 16thwhich threw off his rhythm last week. He still pitched fine, picking up the win against the Diamondbacks going 6 innings, giving up 1 ER and striking out 4. He’s back on track here for this start against the Giants at Oracle Park, which is the third in ballpark factors for run and second for HR’s this season. Gray is averaging 39.75 FD points per game over his last four starts, earning three wins in the process. The Giants are the Ken Doll of Major League Baseball. They are simply not a threat at any level. San Francisco owns the worst BA of .224, second worst wOBA of .283 and second worst ISO of .145 of all 30 MLB teams this season.
4) CC Sabathia, LHP, Yankees ($6500/$7100) – Another of my low-end favorites here lately, Sabathia has pitched pretty darn well this season considering where his DFS price continues to fall. The Blue Jays have the second worst BA of .225, fourth worst wOBA of .292 and fourth worst WRC+ of 81 this season. I’d say that there isn’t a lot of upside here for CC but last time out he rung up 46 FD points against the far more talented Rays. My expectations are for five innings with six upside, four to five strikeouts max and two earned runs given up. Assuming he posts this line or better that will put him in a good position for a win considering the dominance of the Yankees bullpen.
1) Citizen’s Bank Ballpark – 27% above average in HR’s for RHH, 17% above average in HR’s for LHH.
2) Yankee Stadium – 29% above average in HR’s for LHH, 9% above average in HR’s for RHH.
PITCHERS TO TARGET AGAINST
1) Drew Pomeranz, Giants – .305 BAA, 4.70 xFIP, 1.78 WHIP, 35.4% FB%, 24.1% HR/FB%, 2.36 HR/9, 37.7% hard contact rate.
2) Steven Matz, Mets – .257 BAA, 4.35 xFIP, 1.37 WHIP, 36.0% FB%, 19.7% HR/FB%, 1.83 HR/9, 40.4% hard contact rate.
3) Adam Plutko, Indians – .257 BAA, 5.03 xFIP, 49.4% FB%, 20.9% HR/FB%, 2.93 HR/9, 34.5% hard contact rate.
4) CC Sabathia, Yankees – .254 BAA, 4.96 xFIP, 1.37 WHIP, 42.2% FB%, 19.2% HR/FB%, 2.14 HR/9, 43.9% hard contact rate.
5) Aaron Sanchez, Blue Jays – .276 BAA, 5.30 xFIP, 1.67 WHIP, 16.4% HR/FB%, 1.37 HR/9, 35.4% hard contact rate.
(click on link above)
We have a brand new stolen base target tool on the site. I strongly recommend looking it over in order to find a value play or to properly assess how likely a player is to steal tonight.
HOT STREAKS (Hottest Hitters at Each Position)
BATTER VS. PITCHER
C – JT Realmuto, Wilson Ramos, James McCann, Brian McCann, Chris Iannetta
1B – Anthony Rizzo, Freddie Freeman, Brandon Belt
2B – Cesar Hernandez, Ozzie Albies
3B – Todd Frazier, Jose Ramirez, Maikel Franco, Eduardo Escobar, Justin Turner
SS – Didi Gregorius, Jean Segura, Brandon Crawford
OF – Randal Grichuk, Michael Conforto, Mookie Betts, JD Martinez, Kyle Schwarber, Matt Joyce, Nick Markakis, Joc Pederson, Cody Bellinger, Kevin Pillar
For More BvP info check out ourBvP Matchup Page
OVERALL HITTER RANKINGS
1) Gary Sanchez, Yankees
2) JT Realmuto, Phillies
3) Tyler Flowers, Braves
4) Wilson Ramos, Mets
Notes: Take a shitty hitting position, take away 16 teams and see what you have left. The good news is we have Gary Sanchez at home against Aaron Sanchez’s flat sinker. Realmuto has been awful lately so wouldn’t grade out as cash game eligible but his history against Matz and other soft tossing lefties. Flowers and Ramos are both strong power hitters in run producing environments here tonight.
1) Rhys Hoskins, Phillies
2) Anthony Rizzo, Cubs
3) Freddie Freeman, Braves
4) Luke Voit, Yankees
Notes: There’s no reason to spend down at first base tonight. My boy Rhys gets the nod slightly over Rizzo tonight. Rhys has two hits against Matz and neither stayed in the yard. Rizzo is an extreme lowball hitter that matches up extremely well with the sinker of Julio Teheran. Freeman against a lefty starter will likely be contrarian tonight despite his .544 wOBA and 12 RBI over the last week.
1) Ozzie Albies, Braves
2) Jason Kipnis, Indians
3) Gleyber Torres, Yankees
4) Nicky Lopez, Royals
Notes: Albies against LHP is a must play all of the time. He is hitting .370/.382/.589 with 4 HR against southpaws this season. Kipnis is in the zone right now owning a .573 wOBA a .480 ISO, 3 HR and 11 RBI over his last 7 games. Best of all is that Kipnis has struck out just once over his last 30 at-bats. Either Kipnis or Lopez offers us some salary relief which if you are using Kershaw will be very important.
1) Josh Donaldson, Braves
2) Jose Ramirez, Indians
3) Hunter Dozier, Royals
4) DJ LeMahieu, Yankees
Notes: Donaldson crushes lefties throughout his career and his slashing to the tune of .362/.412/.809 with 6 HR over his last 12 games. We’re finally seeing the Jose Ramirez breakout but its going a lot slower than anticipated. J-Ram has just been solid over the last week plus without having one of those monster games. He’s in a great spot though tonight at home, hitting lefty against the Royals Brad Keller. LeMahieu isn’t someone I like to play especially at this price because of his lack of power but he’s gone yard three times over his last six games while hitting .395.
1) Javier Baez, Cubs
2) Francisco Lindor, Indians
3) Amed Rosario, Mets
4) Tim Anderson, White Sox
Notes: Baez is on one of his hot streaks right now but his salary isn’t quite indicative of this just yet. Baez is averaging 18.1 FD points per game over his last five contests. Lindor has a great zone matchup here against Brad Keller and has been running more of late which offers us more upside. Amed Rosario is hitting .429/.455/.571 over his last seven games.
1) Cody Bellinger, Dodgers
2) Ronald Acuna, Braves
3) Scott Kingery, Phillies
4) Kyle Schwarber, Cubs
5) Giancarlo Stanton, Yankees
6) Jeff McNeil, Mets
7) Eloy Jimenez, White Sox
8) Michael Conforto, Mets
9) Randal Grichuk, Blue Jays
10) Aaron Judge, Yankees
Notes: A lot of centralized mini-stacks in play in the outfield tonight. Bellinger is bet play of the position and using him with either Joc Pederson or Alex Verdugo is totally viable. Ronald Acuna is en fuego having reached base at least once in all but one of his previous 14 games. Other nice mini-stacks tonight are Judge/Stanton and McNeil/Conforto both of which have tremendous upside.