Plays of the Day
Value: Yadier Molina is a great option to use tonight against rookie RHP Robert Stephenson, who has posted a 5.59 ERA over 6 MLB appearances and given up 4 ER in 3 straight outings. Molina is hitting .375 this month and .457 over his last 10 appearances, so he’s clearly an elite cash game play.
Fade: Max Scherzer is obviously on a roll and he’s an excellent cash game option, but he hasn’t exactly met the value of his exorbitant price tag lately. The Diamondbacks can really rake and the Nationals should be cautious with his pitch count as the season winds down, so consider Chris Sale as an alternative in tournaments or save a bit with our two studs listed below.
- No real weather concerns tonight.
- Red Sox visiting RHP Luis Cessa
- Cardinals hosting RHP Robert Stephenson
- Rangers hosting RHP Jimmy Nelson
- Cubs visiting RHP Ryan Vogelsong
- Royals hosting RHP Jose Berrios
Longshot Stack:Tigers hosting RHP Mike Clevinger
Justin Verlander: (DET) vs. CLE DK:$11,600/FD:$10,200
I’m certainly aware of the top two studs on the board tonight in Scherzer and Sale, but Verlander might be the best per dollar option at this reasonable price tag. He’s been pitching like an ace for months and is now down to a 2.16 ERA with a .177 BAA and 10.72 K/9 ratio since the ASB. Granted, the one thorn in his side has been the Indians, but he pretty much got over that hurdle by allowing just 1 H and 0 ER over 7 IP in his last outing at Cleveland. Now he’ll face the Indians at home, where he’s sporting a 0.95 WHIP with a 4.96 K/BB ratio on the season and he has a great chance to earn a Win with a Quality Start given the fact that rookie RHP Mike Clevinger is starting for the Tribe tonight.
Noah Syndergaard : (NYM) @ MIA DK:$10,700/FD:$10,800
it’s nice that we have an excuse to make for Syndergaard when looking at his horrible line (3.2 IP, 8 H, 5 ER) against the Braves last week. He was dealing with an illness, but is reportedly over it and ready to make what could be his last start of the regular season on Tuesday. When he’s right, Thor obviously has as much upside as any SP in the league and he’s flashed that potential so far with 21 Ks and just 3 ER allowed over 2 meetings (14 IP) with the Marlins this year. Miami is not a particularly strikeout-prone team, but they’ve been struggling since the ASB and are pressing in an attempt to make the playoffs. Even with the blip on his record in his last start, Syndergaard is sporting a 2.98 ERA and .233 BAA with a 9.65 K/9 ratio over his last 10 appearances and he’s definitely a relative value at this price tag on DK.
Ian Kennedy: (KC) vs. MIN DK:$8,900/FD:$8,300
Kennedy is a very solid mid-tier option in any format even if he’s not particularly cheap on either main DFS sites tonight. The Royals RHP has posted a 2.48 ERA with a .243 BAA over his last 10 appearances and he’s had the Twins number in the past, holding Minnesota to just 6 ER with 22 Ks and 3 Wins in 4 meetings (23.1 IP) with the divisional rivals. He completed dominated the Twins (8 IP, 4 H, 0 BB, 6 K) in a home start last month and struggled a little bit at Target Field a couple of weeks ago, but that’s been the trend all season, as Kennedy’s posted a 3.27 ERA with a 1.13 WHIP at home and struggled more often on the road this year. The Twins are also sporting the lowest collective batting average (.196) with the fewest runs scored (37) in the Majors over the last 14 days and represent an easy lineup to face.
Jose De Leon: (LAD) @ SD DK:$8,000/FD:$7,400
The young SP got served some humble pie in his last outing, and got skipped a start in the rotation as a result, which is bound to happen when you’re trying to make your way as a rookie. Wisely, the Dodgers are bringing him back to face a weak Padres lineup that still ranks dead last in terms of collective batting average (.229) and wOBA (.290) with the second-highest K-Rate (25%) in the Majors against RHP this year. De Leon showed very well in his MLB debut against San Diego, as he struck out 9 over 6 strong innings to earn a Win and he might be allowed to exceed the 86 pitches he threw in that contest now that the Dodgers are looking to save the rest of their staff for a playoff run.
Yadier Molina: (STL) vs. CIN DK: $3,600/FD: $3,000
Yadi got the night off on Monday and surprise! The Cardinals imploded in a 15-2 defeat at the hands of the Reds. He managed to drive in one of those two runs in a pinch-hit appearance, but will almost certainly be behind in the plate in a critical game for his squad as they chase a Wild Card spot. Tonight the Red Birds will have a better chance of putting up crooked numbers against rookie RHP Robert Stephenson, who has posted a 5.59 ERA over 6 MLB appearances and given up 4 ER in 3 straight outings. He’s put up a very troubling 31.5% GB Rate with a 2.17 HR/9 ratio during that span and even though Molina isn’t a typical power hitter, he’s hitting .375 this month and .457 over his last 10 appearances, so he’s clearly an elite cash game play.
Sandy Leon ($3200/$2900) is slumping a bit but could turn it around in a plus matchup against Yanks RHP Luis Cessa.
Buster Posey ($3800/$3600) is comfortable at home and Rockies rookie German Marquez probably won’t be tonight.
David Ortiz: (BOS) @ NYY DK:$5,600/FD:$4,200
It’s tough to choose between Big Papi and Hanley tonight and both are quality options against a vulnerable SP. Luis Cessa was lit up for 3 ER over 5 IP when he travelled to Fenway last week and it frankly should’ve been much worse, but he was lucky enough to get some hard hit balls right at his fielders. Through 7 MLB appearances, he’s coughing up a 2.59 HR/9 ratio with a 6.05 FIP and 25.6% HR/FB ratio against the platoon. Cessa has been even worse at Yankee Stadium, which isn’t surprising given the confines of that ballpark, and Ortiz has obviously done plenty of damage with that short porch in RF. Look for him to start his last series in the Bronx with a bang.
Eric Hosmer ($3600/$3400) could serve as a great addition to a Royals stack tonight against RHP Jose Berrios.
Jose Abreu ($3900/$3500) is clearly one of the White Sox best hitters and he could have a great night if Rays RHP Alex Cobb struggles as badly as he did in his last start.
Whit Merrifield: (KC) vs. MIN DK:$3,800/FD:$2,900
Merrifield offers a ton of upside for a player in this price range and you can’t beat his matchup. The Royals are facing a rookie RHP in Jose Berrios, who has arguably been the most vulnerable SP in the league this year with an 8.88 ERA and 1.99 WHIP over 12 appearances. Berrios gave up 5 ER on 9 H over 5 IP when he faces the Royals at home earlier this month and now he goes on the road against a savvy veteran-laden team. Merrifield has been up and down as a youthful bat infused into that lineup, but he’s running hot right now with multiple hits in 5 of his last 8 appearances. He’s a verifiable speed threat with 8 SB over 75 appearances this year and he could have a big night depending on his placement in the Royals lineup.
Adam Frazier ($2800/$2000 as SS on FD) is getting steady playing time for the Pirates and he’s worth a look against RHP John Lackey.
He’s going through a brief slump, but Brian Dozier ($4200/$3700) has great splits against Ian Kennedy and plenty of upside in that matchup.
Jonathan Villar: (MIL) @ TEX DK:$4,300/FD:$3,900
He was going through a lengthy slump, but after slugging two homers with 5 RBI on Monday night, it’s safe to say that Villar is back in play. He’ll be an elite tournament option at this price tag against Rangers RHP A.J. Griffin, who has really struggled in his past couple of starts at the Launching Pad known as Globe Life Park. The Brewers strike out a lot but they can slug with the best of them and Villar seems to enjoy the favorable conditions down in Arlington. He happens to be 2-for-6 with a 2B and SB in a small sample against Griffin and remains one of the premier dual threats in the game.
Ryon Healy ($3300/$3200) is pretty cheap for a steady hitter that’s facing a mediocre RHP tonight in Ricky Nolasco.
Matt Moore was dreadful in his last start and struggled against the Rockies a few weeks ago, so Nolan Arenado ($4600/$3800) is definitely worth a look as part of a potential Rockies stack.
Jose Peraza: (CIN) @ STL DK:$3,900/FD:$3,500
His overall production was a bit disappointing considering how the Reds put up 15 runs last night, but Peraza helped out fantasy owners plenty with a single, run and SB in the win. Tonight he’s a quality cash game option against aging RHP Adam Wainwright, who is struggling once again with a 5.76 ERA and .308 BAA over his last 9 appearances. Peraza has been raking against all pitching with a .389 batting average since August 1 and he’s been more effective against RHP all season long. Give him a look as a solid mid-tier play against a pitcher that’s vulnerable at this point in the season.
Alcides Escobar ($3700/$2600) could be a very solid play as the potential leadoff hitter for the Royals this evening.
Jose Reyes ($4500/$3100 as 3B on FD) has fantastic splits against Marlins RHP Tom Koehler and is worth a look in tournament formats once again.
Mookie Betts: (BOS) @ NYY DK:$5,600/FD:$4,200
You can’t really get enough Red Sox in your lineups against Luis Cessa, who is coughing up a rough 31.7% Hard Contact Rate with a 21.1% HR/FB ratio on the year and posting a 4.69 xFIP. The head of your Boston stack is Mookie as usual, with his ridiculous .472 batting average and 3 SB over his last 10 appearances and an MVP caliber .321/.366/.540 slash line with 109 RBI on the season. He’s generally been a tough out for Yankees pitching and will have the benefit of playing at that hitter-friendly ballpark tonight as the Red Sox look to clinch first place in the A.L. East.
J.D. Martinez: (DET) vs. CLE DK:$4,200/FD:$3,200
Martinez is clearly under priced on both main DFS sites given his upside. He’s flashed plenty of pop with a .998 OPS since the ASB and is breaking out of a brief slump with 5 hits, including a HR and double, to drive in 5 runs over his last 3 appearances. Tonight, the Tigers will be a great stacking option to consider against rookie Mike Clevinger, who has done a decent job over a couple of short outings recently, but is still coughing up a 1.25 HR/9 ratio and might give up a long ball to one of the best young power hitters in the game.
Jarrod Dyson: (KC) vs. MIN DK:$3,900/FD:$2,900
It’s hard to go wrong with too many Royals in your lineups against Berrios tonight, and Dyson carries plenty of upside because of his blazing speed. As long as he can maintain that .323 batting average over his last 10 appearances he has a great chance to exceed value by taking off against Berrios and catcher Kurt Suzuki this evening. Dyson is 28-for-35 on SB attempts this season and he’s been even more aggressive with 16 stolen bags since the ASB, so give him a look as a GPP play this evening.
Carlos Beltran ($3900/$3900) is not really worth that price on FanDuel but he’s a solid value with upside on DK against RHP Jimmy Nelson.
If Brock Holt ($3500/$3100) starts for Boston against Luis Cessa tonight, he’s definitely going to be worth a look in cash games.
Again, I’ll take my chances with Hunter Pence ($3400/$3000) and the Giants lineup against unproven RHP German Marquez
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