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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!
Today’s Coaching Sessions
All sessions take place in the MLB chat room.
- Bullpen Coach (Phil Backert) – 9am ET
- Pitching Coach (DraftCheat) – 12pm ET
- Hitting Coach (Benny Ricciardi) – 11am ET
- 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
Wednesday, June 26th
I just want to let you all know that today is a wild one for you boy (me). Not only is it my son’s 9thBirthday today, but I’ll be catching a flight immediately after the SiriusXM show tonight in order to attend the 2019 FSGA Summer Conference in New York. Why should you care? Because I won’t be on tonight’s DFS MLB Livestream, it will be Tommy G & DC again tonight, and I will not be able to hop in the chat room either. However, I will be at an airport so good chance that I can get to your questions on Twitter (@Jeff_Mans) while my flight is inevitably delayed somehow. I’ll make sure to answer as many questions there tonight as possible. Sorry for any inconvenience.
Last night the glass slipper finally fell off, but the good thing is that it was entirely my fault that the lineup I used in cash game didn’t make the cut. The write up was pure gold as who the hell calls a Ronald Guzman and Fernando Tatis big game? The pitchers were solid too from top to bottom but it was just not to be for me. Hopefully, and judging by some of your screenshots last night it was a better evening for you.
Remember that on often on Wednesday’s, we have a split slate across DFS MLB. Being on the west coast, I am not about that early morning slate as life is much too busy getting ready for the radio show to deal with that. So, we have Scott Bondar’s Early Bird already posted for those of you who want to get after it early on. Speaking of Scottie, he will be taking over some Cash Game Breakdown duties here going forward. No, Ted is not fired (yet) but with me preparing all of our football content on Fantasy Guru and Elite Fantasy and Schuster constantly following his kids around the earth for sports, we will need some help. As most of you know, Bondar has been fantastic this season. His cheat sheets and Early Bird have been very helpful to subs and thus we are entrusting him with the keys to the vault here in the Cash Game Breakdown starting tomorrow (Thursday).
So, this writeup is focusing on the evening or “Main” DFS MLB slate tonight. It consists of 9 games with very few obvious choices. I live for this shit. As I started my research Tuesday night, this schedule was littered with “undecided” for probably pitchers. It’s those moments that I wish the slate would start early before our counterparts know who is pitching. But I did the leg work, got the info on who will be taking the hill including likely opener scenarios tonight. There aren’t any super stud pitchers on the hill so only a couple of $10K arms to decide on.
What’s more is that we only have the Tigers and Marlins as far as terrible offenses are concerned. There are plenty of good bats in this evening slate and with a lack of top end pitching, a ton of hitters that grade out over our cash game line. So, unlike a lot of slates it may come down to making sure we don’t get our throat punched in by pitching tonight.
Let’s get to it. Here is the DFS MLB Cash Game Breakdown for Wednesday June 26th!
For more info and updated forecast, please check out our MLB Weather Center.
Oakland A’s at St. Louis Cardinals –No threat of rain but it’s going to be crazy hot and humid in St. Louis tonight with a heat index of about 97 degrees. There will be slight winds out to left field too so a better hitting environment than usual.
- HOU -165
- WAS -155
- MIL -140
- PHI -140
- STL -130
Highest Run Expectancy
- HOU 5.97
- PHI 5.58
- NYM 4.92
- CHC 4.90
- MIL 4.85
Lowest Run Expectancy
- MIA 3.39
- PIT 3.53
- WAS 4.11
- DET 4.35
- TB 4.41
Today's Pitchers Grid
1) Mike Minor, LHP, Rangers ($10,100/$11,000) –Minor has been one of the best pitchers in baseball all season long. He enters play tonight 7thin innings pitches (103.2), 3rdin ERA (2.52), 25thin WHIP (1.15), 20thin wins (7), 14thin QS (11), 19thin strikeouts (103) and first…that’s right first in WAR (5.2) this season. If his name was Clayton Kershaw, Blake Snell, Aaron Nola or Cole fricking Hamels, he’d be $12K+ in DFS tonight. He draws the Tigers who have hit the last HR’s against LHP (10) this season by a mile and have struck out the second most (26.6%) against LHP. The secret to Minor’s success is his improved fastball command and changeup use. He stopped messing around with a sinker and is using his fourseamer heavily to get ahead in the count then keeping hitters off balance with hard sliders before putting them away with the changeup. Tigers struggle with all three pitches against LHP. He’s the most expensive pitcher on the board but he’s also better than his price against one of the worst hitting teams in MLB.
2) Patrick Corbin, LHP, Nationals ($9800/$10,600) – Another simple case of a good pitcher against an inferior opponent with an affordable pricetag. I am not the biggest Corbin guy but he dominates lesser opponents. In fact, earlier this season he tossed his only complete game of the season against these Marlins on May 25thgiving up just four hits, one walk and no runs while striking out five. These Marlins hit just .195 and a .236 wOBA in their career against Corbin. It is only a couple of hundred dollar savings from Mike Minor here but with how terrible the lower end pitching is tonight, we are going to have to exhaust our options up top in order to not fall in the hole with our arms.
3) Zac Gallen, RHP, Marlins ($7800/$7100) – Not an ideal matchup for the second time starter but we will learn quickly here what exactly he is made of against the Nationals today. In a normal slate, this would be a beautiful GPP play but with such limited pitching options we would have to roll the dice a bit in order to afford more bats. He profiles well against these Nats bats thanks mostly to his curveball and his changeup. The secret about the Nats is that they don’t hit pitches that move very well but the slaughter the straight stuff especially fastballs. I’ve noticed all of the Marlins pitchers using their off-speed pitches a lot more over the last three weeks than in the first two months of the season and the success is shining through. It’s not a safe play by any means, but this is also a pitcher that can be in the middle of a true breakout season if he continues the domination he showed in the PCL and in his first start last week.
4) Framber Valdez, LHP, Astros ($7700/$6900) – The biggest problem here is that Framber isn’t as cheap as he should be because of SO MANY other just terrible arms that are on tap tonight. If he was $6500 on both sites, I’d feel pretty good about it but at $7700 its just “OK.” Valdez is a quality prospect that features four above average pitches which in my mind help him grade out as a starter rather than the reliever that the Astros have penciled him in as. His fastball has some downward bite and can hit 94 MPH regularly but it’s his curveball that is the swing and miss offering that we are looking for. Unfortunately, the Pirates are pretty good hitting the curveball well but this one is going to challenge even the most patient of contact hitters. Remember, we are not going to get a huge game out of Valdez or any of these lower priced options tonight. What we are looking for is stability and any way to generate points without risking implosion is huge this evening.
5) Jaime Barria, RHP, Angels ($6000/$6900) –There are two things at play here. The first is that the Reds are just awful right now, losing three in a row and striking out 10 times against these Angels last night. The Reds have struck out 40.7% of out over their last three games. Over their last seven games, Cincinnati has struck out 26.5% over the time. The second aspect of Barria that is at play here is that he’s changed his pitch mix which appears for the better. Barria hasn’t been good in AAA but he’s been working on eliminating his sinker and throwing more changeups which is a better pitch. Again, this would normally be a GPP play only but if loading up on bats is what you want, you have to find a bare bones option and that is exactly what Barria is tonight.
(2018 Data) (Click here for more park factors!)
1) Comerica Park –13.5% above average for runs, 2% above average in HR’s, 88.5% above average in 3B.
2) Miller Park –6.6% above average for runs, 22.7% above average in HR’s.
3) Angels Stadium –9.3% above average for runs, 27.3% above average in HR’s, 8.4% above average in 2B.
Things To Target (Against)
1) Daniel Mengden, A’s – .250 BAA, 5.93 xFIP, 1.65 WHIP, 39.7% FB%, 6.3% swinging strike rate, 45.2% hard contact rate.
2) Adam Wainwright, Cardinals – .256 BAA, 4.37 xFIP, 15.0% HR/FB%, 1.07 HR/9, 7.1% swinging strike rate, 42.8% hard contact rate.
3) Jason Vargas, Mets – .235 BAA, 5.30 xFIP, 1.33 WHIP, 40.2% FB%, 7.6% swinging strike rate, 39.1% hard contact rate.
4) Nick Pivetta, Phillies – .287 BAA, 4.26 xFIP, 1.45 WHIP, 25.0% HR/FB%, 2.15 HR/9, 43.3% hard contact rate.
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 – Jonathan Lucroy
1B – Ronald Guzman, Anthony Rizzo, Justin Bour
2B – Ozzie Albies
3B – Brad Miller
SS – Amed Rosario, Jean Segura, Elvis Andrus
OF – Michael Conforto, Khris Davis, Nick Markakis
Overall Hitter Rankings
- Brian McCann, Braves
- JT Realmuto, Phillies
- Wilson Ramos, Mets
- Elias Diaz, Pirates
McCann has an outstanding zone profile against Yu Darvish’s slider. If the Wrigley wind is still blowing out like it has the past two days, we could see McCann leaving the yard tonight. Both Realmuto and Ramos are in play at Citizens Bank. Ramos is hitting .400 with a .546 wOBA and .467 ISO over his last five games. What’s even better is that he’s only struck out 11.1% of the time as well. Realmuto is rebounding after a big slump thanks to some home cooking. He’s had and XBH in each of his first two games against the Mets this week and scored three runs.
- Freddie Freeman, Braves
- Rhys Hoskins, Phillies
- Pete Alonso, Mets
- Ronald Guzman, Rangers
How to choose between Freeman, Hoskins and Alonso tonight is going to be hard. The one takeaway though is that we are going to pay up at 1B pretty much no matter what. Rhys Hoskins and Freddie Freeman are seriously two of the best hitters in the game of baseball. These guys are patient, set up the pitcher with the swings on certain pitches in certain zones, make contact, make hard contact and hit the ball out of the ballpark. It’s amazing how young these guys are still. Don’t sleep on Ronald Guzman. As I told you yesterday, he and Odor destroy the ball at Comerica and his HR last night came off of a lefty.
- Mike Moustakas, Brewers
- Brandon Lowe, Rays
- Brian Dozier, Nationals
- Rougned Odor, Rangers
Second base is a scarce position tonight. Moustakas has reached base safely in 18 straight games and is at home with the fifth highest expected total tonight. Lowe is averaging 13.9 FD points per game over his last four games and Odorizzi is surrendering a .280/.326/.356 triple slash to LHH this season. Dozier owns a .458 wOBA and .467 ISO over his last five games and costs barely above the minimum. Odor isn’t in an ideal spot against a tough lefty but crushes the ball at Comerica Park to the tune of .348/.377/.667 in 17 career games.
- Matt Carpenter, Cardinals
- Matt Chapman, A’s
- Kyle Seager, Mariners
- Tommy La Stella, Angels
Carpenter earns the top spot thanks to Daniel Mengden and his .348 wOBA against LHH this season. In the other dugout, Matt Chapman has been fire hitting .412/.524/.941 with a .521 ISO and only a 9.5% strikeout rate over his last five games. Seager seems to have regained his stroke here in Milwaukee and draws the righty Adrian Houser who throws a lot of fastballs. Angels lefties are all in play tonight against Tanner Roark who is surrendering a .293/.393/.479 slash against LHH.
- Javier Baez, Cubs
- Elvis Andrus, Rangers
- Jean Segura, Phillies
- J.P. Crawford, Mariners
Baez is in the zone right now and driving the ball the other way. When he is like this, you just get on and enjoy the ride. He is filling up the 6+ column on a daily basis accumulating 2 HR’s, 3 SB’s, 1 2B and 1 3B over his last 7 games. Andrus is another Rangers player who is hot but this time with a great pitch to zone matchup against Matt Boyd’s slider. Is anybody else seeing what JP Crawford has been doing lately? The former Phillies top prospect has 6 hits in his last 2 games but is 12-29 (.414) over his last 7 games. That is an average of 17.1 FD points per game over the last week for Crawford.
- Ronald Acuna, Braves
- Domingo Santana, Mariners
- Ryan Braun, Brewers
- Juan Soto, Nationals
- Jeff McNeil, Mets
- Scott Kingery, Phillies
- Bryce Harper, Phillies
- Yasiel Puig, Reds
- Dominic Smith, Mets
- Shohei Ohtani, Angels
Even though the best OF in this slate like Mike Trout, Christian Yelich and George Springer are in “fine” situations, none of them make the cut here. It appears as though the OF is a mid-tier and value position for us today. Acuana is the one star that would be hard to sit out cause he is just wrecking the ball every time he makes contact. When Domingo Santana is taking pitches, good things happen and that is a big part of why he is hitting .385 with a .671 wOBA over his last six games. The Mets and Phillies outfielders make for some real good mini-stacks that won’t break the budget tonight.