Solid 13 game MLB DFS slate here for Friday night. We do have two other games starting earlier, but we will stick with the main slate for the article.
The key game to discuss for any hitting today is the one in Coors as that has the highest total and two of the higher team totals on the day. It is an interesting spot because both Jon and Sonny Gray have pitched pretty well this year. In a neutral park, this wouldn’t be a game I’d want much exposure to on either side, but even in Coors, I’m still willing to fade in tournaments because we should see high ownership given the total.
Normally the Coors game features the highest team total, especially when it’s the highest O/U on the board, but the Yankees actually have a higher team total than the Rockies today. They are at home and face Aaron Sanchez, who has been horrendous with a 6+ ERA with an xFIP over 5 to go with it. The Yanks blasted him for 7 runs in five innings a few starts back too.
The Astros, Brewers, Angels, and Athletics all come in around 5.5 runs projected today. The Dodgers and Red Sox are not far behind, but they face each other with some solid pitching on both sides of that game.
Friday big slates are fun and this one should be no different. We have plenty of options to keep things interesting in GPPs tonight.
Chalkiest Stacks: Rockies, Yankees (Prefer Yanks to Rockies), Reds
Sneakier Stacks: Astros, Rays, Padres
Top Fade: Reds.They are going to be super chalky in Coors. Price hikes on DK make them easy to ignore. Jon Gray is better at home and owns righties. The Reds lefties do not scare me much. Votto is down, Dietrich has cooled off, and Gennett is not fully back yet. Winker is the scariest of those bats today, but that’s really about it for me.
Top HR Call: Aaron Judge
10% Owned HR Call: Matt Olson
5% owned HR: Evan Longoria
1% owned HR: Rowdy Tellez
Gary Sanchez – The Yankees stack has the top team total on the day and they should all be in play against Sanchez. We don’t have many catchers with prime lineup real estate and Sanchez is head and shoulders over the others on DK. Even on FD, he is about the only catcher I don’t ignore completely in the c/1B spot.
Wilson Ramos – The Mets backstop draws a good pitcher in Caleb Smith, but he does have a weakness for allowing homers. Stacking against Caleb Smith is dumb, but as an extreme FB pitcher, his HR/9 is elevated and we can look for one-off’s. Ramos is pretty cheap and if you catch a HR from him at low cost and ownership you will be very happy with that.
Jorge Alfaro – I really am not a huge fan of his, but I do love this matchup. Jason Vargas has pitched well above his head with an ERA over a run below his xFIP. He’s not really lights out to anyone, but is weaker to righties. Alfaro is at a nice price point and plays a tough to fill catcher spot on DK. Really that’s the appeal with him. Wouldn’t even consider him on FanDuel.
Matt Olson – When you make a guy one of your top HR calls on the day he has to be one of your top plays and Olson is for me. I know Ivan Nova threw well last time out, but this guy has been trash much of the year. I’m looking to target lefties when Nova is on the mound, preferably ones with power, and Olson fits the bill.
Pete Alonso – We got into the Caleb Smith HR problem a little bit with Wilson Ramos above, but, basically, if you are trying to take advantage against him, that is the kind of bat that fits the description. Ramos is a good hitter, but his numbers are far short of the power stroke recently crowned HR champ Pete Alonso has been flashing. Against a flyball pitcher, Alonso’s power comes into play big time. It’ll likely be a solo shot, but he has a very good chance of taking Smith yard today.
Jake Lamb – The left-handed power bat is back for the Diamondbacks, but has moved to the other side of the diamond. Adam Wainwright is still nasty against RHB, but his numbers to lefties have fallen off a cliff. In 33 innings of work this year, lefties have a .389 wOBA, .547 slugging and 7 homers.
Rowdy Tellez – Tellez is dirt cheap and he’s a lefty. The Blue Jays face Domingo German and the Yanks at Yankee Stadium, a place where lefty power plays well. Tellez has a .250 ISO score, so he has some pop and German gives up homers at a clip over 1.5 per 9. If you need a cheap low owned longshot on a chalky roster, he’s that guy today.
Max Muncy – Eduardo Rodriguez has struggled more with reverse splits hitters batting from the left side. The Dodgers have two big bats like that in the middle of the order with Muncy and Bellinger. I’m not going to pick on E-Rod too heavily, but Muncy and Bellinger do profile as hitters who should perform well against him. Muncy has a 139 wRC+ against LHP since 2016 with a .376 wOBA and .262 ISO score.
Cavan Biggio – If I had to pick a favorite power bat to go after German with it would probably be Cavan Biggio. You don’t find many 2B in power spots in the order or with matchups that favor them over the pitcher. German struggles with lefty power in a stadium where lefties without power can hit homers anyway. This may be a little more on the high risk, high reward side as a cash play, but definitely want exposure here tonight.
Jose Altuve – The crazy part here is Altuve is the cheapest of the three and by a pretty decent margin too. Both righties and lefties are hitting better than league average against Jesse Chavez, so the matchup is great. After fighting through some injuries, Altuve is starting to find his groove and his numbers are still some of the best in the league in terms of average, OBP, and wOBA.
Nolan Arenado – Second highest team total today and Sonny Gray actually has been worse to fellow righties than lefties both this year and over his career. Arenado is my favorite bat here for cash or GPPs. While I may not be stacking Rockies today as chalk, I will have exposure to Arenado in all formats.
Rafael Devers – Kenta Maeda owns righties, but struggles with lefties. Devers has been on fire heading to the break with 14+ DK points in 6 of his last 10 games.
Evan Longoria – Speaking of catching fire, Evan Longoria is spontaneously combusting because he’s so hot. He has hit safely in his last 6 starts, going 10 for 25 with 5 homers over that stretch. He gets an elite park shift from SF to Milwaukee and draws a weak pitcher in Chase Anderson. I haven’t played him yet while he’s been on this run, but I’m ready to jump back in on Longoria tonight in this elite spot at a very cheap price (Especially on FD)
Francisco Lindor – I wouldn’t touch righties against Kyle Gibson, but he is only league average at best against LHB. SS is a tough to fill position and Lindor is one of my favorite options on the day.
Fernando Tatis – I actually rank Tatis slightly higher than Francisco Lindor, but he’s also more expensive. I know people love Dallas Keuchel, but I’m not sold on him here. I wouldn’t stack against him due to his ability to limit damage, but he’s also not someone shutting down opponents. It’s been under 100 ABs at this level for Tatis against LHP, but the early returns are unreal with a 180 wRC+ so far.
Didi Gergorious – The Yanks are likely to smash today and Didi is one of the few reasonably priced options on the team. He’ll likely bat 5th, in the middle of the order, and he faces Aaron Sanchez, who has always struggled with lefties. Sanchez has an elevated HR/9 this year and has allowed a .347 wOBA to LHBs. Lots of reasons to be high on Didi today.
Aaron Judge – Again, I expect the Yanks to smash today and Judge has the best numbers on the team since 2016. Even in same handed spots, we are looking at a guy with a 150+ wRC+ score, which is elite.
Tommy Pham – The Rays are a sneaky stack today because they face the Baltimore Orioles in Baltimore and that bullpen is garbage. There’s even upside potential against the starter, Dylan Bundy, who racks up strikeouts but also gives up a ton of homers (just shy of 2 HR/9). Pham is my favorite bat to use from the Rays, but really, this whole team is cheap, especially for the ballpark and bullpen they match up against today.
Andrew Benintendi – As mentioned with Devers above, we want exposure to lefties against Maeda. Benintendi at $4500 on DK is pretty reasonably priced in a good matchup, but at $3500 on FD, the price feels too cheap. I think he flies under the radar a bit and despite the solid pitching on both sides, this game features two teams with team totals over 5, so we’re likely to see some runs.
Cody Bellinger – I mentioned earlier that Eduardo Rodriguez struggles more with same handed hitters, and Bellinger is very strong in lefty v. lefty matchups. He has a solid .362 wOBA with a .260 ISO and a 129 wRC+ even in what is his weaker split.
Mike Trout – Mike Leake is not a bad pitcher, but he does have an elevated HR/9. He’s also tougher on righties, but those righties are mere mortals compared to Mike Trout and the number he puts up. The biggest reason I like Trout today is I don’t think he’ll take on significant ownership. Everywhere I look people are mentioning other bats that they want to spend on, which makes me think Trout could slide in at like 15% ownership or less in GPPs. I’ll definitely take the best player on the planet at those levels.
Shohei Ohtani – Trout’s numbers are off the charts, but Ohtani is not far behind against RHP either. Leake actually profiles better for him as his struggles come against lefties. I can’t stack against Leake, but I do like using one of Trout or Ohtani as GPP plays because they have a nice team total and both should fly under the radar.
Michael Brantley – I love the Astors stack today and I like a lot of the pieces that go into it. Chavez is giving up 40% hard contact, and despite the 3.30 ERA, he has an xFIP of 4.30, which means regression is coming. He is being stretched out due to depth problems, but he may not be around long enough today as the Astros have a high team total and Brantley is one of the more reasonably priced options.
Yordan Alvarez – Basically everything we said about Brantley applies here too. These are the guys with the better splits matchup against a pitcher due to regress in a high total game that is going a bit overlooked. Plus, both are reasonably priced compared to the rest of the lineup.
Nick Castellanos – He has been elite against LHP in his career. Danny Duffy owns lefties, but sucks against righties. The Tigers actually have a lot of RHB’s to throw at him, but most of them suck. Castellanos is the only guy over the last few years with numbers well above average against LHP and, due to the matchup, he really stands out at a nice price point today.
Jesse Winker – Jon Gray struggles more with lefties, mostly because he owns righties. I really want to be higher on the Reds, but with Votto struggling, Scooter still rounding back into shape, and Dietrich coming back down to earth, we have very few viable options. Winker is probably my favorite and, honestly, I’m not really in love with him. I used him in cash to get some Coors exposure, but I’m not looking to be heavily invested in Cincy today, despite the high Vegas total.
Franmil Reyes – I really think the Padres are sneaky here and mostly because they have a quartet of guys with 130+ wRC+ scores against lefties. Reyes is under $3K on FD and reasonably priced on DK as well. I know Dallas Keuchel has been his usual self, going 5-7 innings and giving up only a couple runs, but the Padres bats with Tatis, Machado, Reyes, and Renfroe are all in very good spots here. I normally don’t stack against Keuchel, but I’ll have sprinklings of these guys throughout my lineup.
Hunter Renfroe – Much like Reyes, the numbers here are just too elite to ignore. Renfroe against lefties since 2016 owns a .397 wOBA, a massive .333 ISO score and a 151 wRC+. Again, I’m not stacking against Keuchel, but I love these guys as cheap one-offs with upside due to their power and the splits matchup.