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Scouting the MLB DFS - Sunday, August 21

Get some last second advice on Sunday's 11-game slate of MLB action so you can cash in on DraftKings and FanDuel

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Plays of the Day

Value: Now is the time to pounce on Miguel Cabrera at this very much diminished price tag on DraftKings. The Tigers slugger made some hard contact last night and was unlucky to fail to record a hit, and he might leave no doubt tonight if he can square up an offering from Red Sox sophomore Henry Owens. The young RHP will make a sport start after posting subpar numbers at the AAA level and a rough 5.11 ERA and 2.11 WHIP over 3 appearances in the Majors this season, and Miggy will make him pay for any mistakes.

Fade: Justin Verlander is starting to show some deficiencies after a long stretch of fantastic starts, and the Red Sox offense will make any SP look bad if they’re not on their game. David Ortiz happens to have great career splits against Verlander and he’s one of several red-hot hitters (See: Mookie Betts) that makes Boston a nightmarish matchup.

Weather Report

    Chance of delays in Atlanta and Philadelphia this afternoon, while serious storms in Baltimore could even lead to a postponement.

Stackable Menu

  1. Tigers hosting RHP Henry Owens
  2. Nationals visiting RHP Joel De La Cruz
  3. Yankees visiting RHP Jhoulys Chacin
  4. Astros visiting RHP Yovani Gallardo
  5. Reds hosting LHP Julio Urias

Longshot Stack: Rangers visiting LHP Drew Smyly


Two Studs

Danny Duffy: (KC) vs. MIN DK:$12,900/FD:$10,000

It’s hard to explain just how good Duffy has been all of a sudden, but for now you just want to ride the wave and consider him the top per dollar option at a still reasonable price tag on FanDuel. The Royals southpaw is sporting a 2.15 ERA, 0.85 WHIP and .184 BAA over 7 starts since the ASB. He’s actually been on a roll since before that, as he’s gone 8-0 with a 2.21 ERA over his last 10 appearances and he’s yet to lose a decision at home this year. Duffy will face a Twins team today that is struggling a bit and might be low on confidence after getting shut down by Ian Kennedy in a 10-0 loss last night. Current Twins are hitting .225 with 23 hits and 19 strikeouts over 113 career plate appearances against Duffy and haven’t really faced this new and improved version.

Ervin Santana: (MIN) at KC DK:$8,700/FD:$7,900

Once again, Santana checks in at a modest price tag on FanDuel despite his steady success for the Twins. He's sporting a 1.77 ERA and 0.95 WHIP over his last 10 appearances while growing stronger and stronger to the point that he allowed just 3 total ER while winning each of his last 3 starts. Today the Twins offense will have some trouble tagging Royals LHP Danny Duffy, but that doesn't mean Santana can't handle a Kansas City squad that is sporting the 4th lowest collective wOBA (.308) with the 2nd fewest runs scored in the American League this season. While he posted mediocre numbers over two starts against his former team much earlier this season, Santana is in a zone right now and he shouldn't be ignored at this discounted price tag.

Value Play:

Ryan Vogelsong: (PIT) vs. MIA DK:$5,700/FD:$7,000

If you want a relatively safe value play with some upside today, consider siding with Vogelsong and the Pirates at home. Pittsburgh (-137) is expected to win against vulnerable young Marlins RHP Jose Urena, who is sporting a 6.80 ERA after coughing up a combined 13 ER over his last 2 appearances. Vogelsong hasn't been too impressive since coming off the DL in early August, but he's gotten the job done with a 2.56 ERA and 12 strikeouts over 3 starts this month. The Marlins have been struggling offensively all year and seem to lack the LHB necessary to take advantage of Vogelsong's historical issues when facing the platoon.

Longshot Pitcher:

Marcus Stroman: (TOR) @ CLE DK:$7,000/FD:$7,800

For whatever reason, Stroman has enjoyed facing this dangerous Indians lineup, as he held them to 1 ER on 5 hits over 6.2 IP in a start earlier this year after posting solid numbers against Cleveland last season. Current Indians are just 9-for-44 (.205) with 1 XBH and 8 strikeouts in their careers against Stroman, who has turned around a disastrous campaign with a 2.45 ERA and 0.98 WHIP over 3 starts in August and solid numbers since the ASB. The young flamethrower has found his groove with a 12.27 K/9 ratio during that span and he has plenty of upside if he can start strong against the Tribe once again.



Brian McCann: (NYY) @ LAA DK: $3,800/FD: $3,000

McCann has been far from consistent this year, but he’s still a quality option to consider in any format as part of a high-upside stack this afternoon. The Yankees will look to tee off on new Angels RHP Jhoulys Chacin, who has struggled since moving back to the A.L. and has been roughed up for 11 ER over his last 2 appearances. Chacin is allowing LHB to post a .352 wOBA and he’s sporting a 5.25 FIP with a 1.20 HR/9 ratio against the platoon this year. McCann is usually just a tournament play to consider with the short porch at Yankee Stadium, but he matches up well against this starter and is worth a look on a slow slate for catchers.

Potential Value

Sandy Leon ($2900/$3300) is still a great value on DK even though he’s going up against Tigers ace Justin Verlander today.


Ramon Cabrera ($2800/$2200) is a punt play to consider on either main DFS site with the platoon advantage against Dodgers LHP Julio Urias.

First Base:

Miguel Cabrera: (DET) vs. BOS DK:$3,600/FD:$3,900

Yes, he's gone 0-for-7 over his last 2 appearances, but now is the time to pounce on Cabrera at this very much diminished price tag on DraftKings. The Tigers slugger made some hard contact last night and was unlucky to fail to record a hit, and he might leave no doubt tonight if he can square up an offering from Red Sox sophomore Henry Owens. The young RHP will make a sport start after posting subpar numbers at the AAA level and a rough 5.11 ERA and 2.11 WHIP over 3 appearances in the Majors this season, while the Tigers lineup is more than capable of adding to his difficulties by rallying around their best hitter in Cabrera.

Potential Value

Jose Abreu ($3800/$3200) is swinging a hot bat for the White Sox and draws a good matchup against inexperienced RHP Zach Neal.


Consider Adrian Gonzalez ($4600/$3400) as a strong value play on FD and a GPP option on either main DFS site in a matchup against stingy Reds RHP Anthony DeSclafani.

Second Base:

Brandon Phillips: (CIN) vs. LAD DK:$4,500/FD:$2,700

If you want to pay up for Jose Altuve at 2B no one will fault you for that the way the prospective A.L. MVP has performed lately, but Phillips is definitely worth a look for salary relief on FanDuel. The Reds veteran RHB hit safely in yet another appearance last night and he’s now slashing .405/.436/.514 over his last 10 appearances. The Reds offense is hot right now and could continue to produce with inconsistent rookie LHP Julio Urias on the bump for the visiting Dodgers. Urias has been wild at points throughout his first campaign and he’s failed to last very long in any start, so look for Phillips and company to put up a crooked number against this rookie and the Dodgers middle relief.

Potential Value

Cesar Hernandez ($4500/$3100) is a strong cash game option with the platoon advantage against RHP Mike Leake.


Dee Gordon ($4800/$3400) is one of the few Marlins batters with good splits against RHP Ryan Vogelsong and he has tremendous upside today due to his speed.

Third Base:

Adrian Beltre: (TEX) @ TB DK:$4,500/FD:$3,400

He's not objectively cheap, but Beltre is certainly under priced given his upside in today's matchup. The renowned lefty-killer could serve as the heart of a Rangers stack against Rays southpaw Drew Smyly, who has been boom or bust all season and draws a tough test against a Texas team that's sporting the 4th best collective average (.277) against LHP this year. Beltre is hitting .330 with a .413 wOBA against the platoon this season and he happens to be 6-for-9 with a HR and 3 walks over 13 career plate appearances against Smyly. He's been hot lately with a .447 batting average, 4 HR, and more walks (5) than strikeouts (4) over his last 10 appearances and seems like a very strong play at this price.

Potential Value

Alex Bregman ($4400/$3100) stayed hot with 3 more hits last night and he’s a strong option to consider in an even better matchup against Orioles RHP Yovani Gallardo.


Danny Valencia ($3700/$3000) is always worth a look against LH starters and he’s been heating up ahead of a matchup against White Sox southpaw Jose Quintana.


Jhonny Peralta: (STL) @ PHI DK:$3,300/FD:$3,000

Peralta is simply a safe play at a modest price tag that can help you pay up for studs at other positions today. He might surprise as part of a Cardinals stack against RHP Vince Velasquez, who had a very strong start to the year but is sporting a 7.25 ERA over his last 5 starts and has coughed up 3 homers in each of his last 2 outings. Peralta has power to all fields and loves to face the fastball, so he has a chance to flash some upside while providing a solid floor as he’s batting .306 over his last 10 appearances.

Potential Value

Dansby Swanson ($2400/$2400) is a strong value to consider as the rookie gets a chance to lead off for the Braves against LHP Gio Gonzalez.


Consider Elvis Andrus ($3400/$2700) as a cheap addition to a Rangers stack against Smyly.


Trea Turner: (WAS) @ ATL DK:$4,700/FD:$4,000 as SS

Despite his lofty and sustained level of production, Turner’s price tag is dropping a bit on DK. The rookie has been outstanding with a .321 batting average and .380 wOBA this month, while he’s sporting a .393 average on the road during his first season. Turner very much prefers to face righties, and the Braves are starting a RHP today in Joel De La Cruz, who has struggled with his control while attempting to make the move from the bullpen to the starting rotation. A combination of De La Cruz and Atlanta catcher Tyler Flowers will be easy enough for Turner to run on, and the rookie’s been dynamic on the base paths with 13 stolen bags in 14 attempts this year.

J.D. Martinez: (DET) vs. BOS DK:$4,900/FD:$3,600

Along with Miguel Cabrera, JDM is a premier option to consider today with the Tigers wrapping up a home stand against vulnerable Red Sox RHP Henry Owens. The young pitcher depends on a live fastball to get hitters out, but Martinez excels with a 23.4 runs above rating against the four-seam fastball according to data collected by Brooks Baseball. He’s on fire with a .459 average and 4 homers while hitting safely in each of his last 10 appearances and is a solid option in any format this Sunday.

Ryan Rua: (TEX) @ TB DK:$3,000/FD:$2,800

Rua draws a spot start for the Rangers tonight because of his ability to hit lefties, and he could jump in as part of a solid stack if Rays southpaw Drew Smyly struggles today. Tampa's starter has either posted excellent numbers or been tagged in most of his outings this year, so it's worth considering cheap bats such as Rua in GPP formats, as the Rangers platoon specialist is sporting a .314 batting average and .359 wOBA against LHP this year.

Potential Values

Kole Calhoun ($3100/$3200) is starting to find a rhythm for the Angels and he’ll draw a plus matchup against converted reliever Chad Green.

Both Aaron Altherr ($4300/$3000) and fellow Phillies LHB Odubel Herrera ($5000/$2700) are seriously under priced on FanDuel ahead of a solid matchup against Cardinals RHP Mike Leake.

Delino Deshields ($2800/$2800) is a solid value to consider now that we know he’ll be leading off for the Rangers today against Smyly.

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