Plays of the Day
Value: Nomar Mazara is off to a red-hot start this season with multiple hits in all 4 of his appearances, as he’s 10-for-17 with 2 HR, 9 RBI and 5 runs scored as a main cog in the Rangers elite offense. That unit will certainly be worth stacking tonight against a below average RHP in Kendall Graveman, who has posted a career 4.51 ERA with a 1.23 HR/9 ratio away from massive Oakland Coliseum throughout his career.
Fade: Yu Darvish continues to show incredible potential, but opposing hitters have timed him up to an extent and the A’s scratched out 11 ER with 5 HR over 4 meetings (25 IP) with him last season.
Team Target Stacks
Rangers: Rougned Odor, Nomar Mazara, Carlos Gomez, Shin Soo-Choo
Phillies: Maikel Franco, Odubel Herrera, Aaron Altherr
Dodgers: Corey Seager, Adrian Gonzalez, Andrew Toles
Strong winds blowing IN at New York (Mets), San Diego and in Texas.
Madison Bumgarner: (SF) @ SD DK: $12,500/FD: $11,900
The Padres offense remains awful this year, as they’re ranked 25th in collective batting average (.198) with the fifth-highest K-Rate (24.1%) in the Majors after posting the second-lowest collective wOBA (.297) in the MLB last season and so far they’ve looked completely inept against elite starting pitching. Bumgarner pitched well in a tough matchup at Arizona to open the season and he’s certainly capable of posting good numbers against a Padres lineup that’s a collective 15-for-73 (.205) with 13 K’s in their careers against him. He’s posted a troubling ERA at Petco Park over the past couple of seasons but is still holding the Pads to a very low batting average and those runs can mostly be considered flukes.
Clayton Kershaw: (LAD) @ COL DK: $10,000/FD: $10,400
Chances are that Kershaw won’t come this cheap at any other point this year and that makes it worth using him despite the obvious reputation of hitter-friendly Coors Field. Yet Colorado’s ballpark is far more conducive to success for LHP and the Dodgers and Rockies combined for a measly 3 runs in the first game of this series, so it’s certainly possible that he rolls in his second start of the year. The lefty-heavy Rockies lineup posted a 22.9% K-Rate against LHP last year and current Rockies are a combined 49-for-209 (.234) with 64 K’s in their careers against Kershaw.
Aaron Nola: (PHI) vs. WAS DK: $7,700 / FD: $7,600
A popular sleeper coming into the 2017 season, Nola will make his debut at home tonight against a boom-or-bust Nationals lineup. Washington posted a solid .318 wOBA with a 20% K-Rate against RHP last year and the Nationals only managed to hit a collective .256 off Nola over 3 meetings in 2016. While Bryce Harper has excellent splits (7-for-11, 2 HR) in his career against Nola, the Phillies young RHP has figured out how to elicit a ton of ground balls (55.2% GB Rate last year) and his solid peripherals (3.08 FIP) are bound to catch up to his unlucky .334 BABIP from 2016.
Felix Hernandez: (SEA) @ LAA DK: $9,400/FD: $9,100
King Felix was also a candidate to bounce back this year after struggling in 2016 and he got off to a good start with 6 K’s and just a pair of solo homers blemishing his outing on Opening Day, but was pulled early due to groin tightness. Apparently that issue is behind him and he should be ready to perform at spacious Angels Stadium. While Mike Trout (29-for-76, 6 XBH, 7 HR) has owned Hernandez in the past, the rest of the Angels are a combined 46-for-247 (.186) with 71 K’s in their careers against Felix, who is certainly capable of righting the ship with some adjustments to his mechanics.
Willson Contreras: (CHC) @ MIL DK: $3,900 / FD: $3,000
The Cubbies should be a popular stack tonight at hitter-friendly Miller Life Park and hopefully Contreras will draw a start with the platoon advantage against vulnerable RHP Tommy Milone. The former Twins starter allowed RHB to post a .362 wOBA with a 22.4% HR/FB ratio last year and Contreras raked with a .311 batting average against the platoon. He’s off to a great start this season with a couple of clutch hits for the defending world champions and he could serve as a valuable addition to a potent stack.
Francisco Cervelli: (PIT) vs. ATL DK: $2,900 / FD: $2,200
This is a very cheap price tag for a solid offensive catcher and R.A. Dickey’s knuckler might not be moving this early in the season for the Braves.
Matt Wieters: (WAS) @ PHI DK: $3,200 / FD: $2,900
When Aaron Nola struggles, it’s usually against the platoon and Wieters has plenty of pop from the left side of the plate.
Freddie Freeman: (ATL) @ PIT DK: $4,400 / FD: $3,300
While the rest of the lineup continues to struggle, Freeman got off to a great start with a 3-hit performance on Opening Day and he’s worth a look now that he’s not facing an elite Mets RHP or stellar SP Ivan Nova. This is the best matchup of the year so far for the Bravos against second-year RHP Chad Kuhl, who posted a 7.03 ERA with a 1.48 HR/9 ratio over 24.1 IP at PnC Park last season. Lefties hit .364 off Kuhl in Pittsburgh and Freeman raked with a .341 batting average and .391 wOBA on the road against the platoon in 2016.
Tommy Joseph: (PHI) vs. WAS DK: $3,700 / FD: $2,000
The Phillies could be worth stacking against weak RHP Jeremy Guthrie tonight.
Anthony Rizzo: (CHC) @ MIL DK: $5,300 / FD: $4,100
He still flashed plenty of power in LvL matchups last year and is worth adding to a Cubs stack against Tommy Milone.
Rougned Odor: (TEX) vs. OAK DK: $4,400 / FD: $3,200
The Rangers are red hot with 24 runs through 4 games and they were finally able to outscore an opponent at home last night in a 10-5 win over Oakland. Now they face one of the weaker SPs on the slate in Graveman, who posted a 4.11 ERA and 4.39 FIP while coughing up a troubling 33.3% Line Drive Rate and 40% Hard Contact Rate in his fourth MLB season. Odor will have the platoon advantage against a RHP who has allowed lefties to post a .324 wOBA and struggled with a 1.44 WHIP against LHB throughout his career. Odor has flashed a lot of power with 3 HR already this season and he’s a good option in any format.
Odubel Herrera: (PHI) vs. WAS DK: $3,900 / FD: $3,500 as OF
Herrera should be able to reach base and do some damage against Nationals RHP Jeremy Guthrie.
Dee Gordon: (MIA) @ NYM DK: $3,800 / FD: $3,200
The speedster finally draws a good matchup against RHP Robert Gsellman and he’s under priced on DK given his upside.
Kris Bryant: (CHC) @ MIL DK: $5,200 / FD: $4,100
Bryant is off to a slow start this year after his MVP 2016 campaign, but he could flash his incredible upside in tonight’s matchup. The Brewers send vulnerable LHP Tommy Milone to the mound after he posted a rough 5.71 ERA with a 1.53 WHIP over 19 appearances with the Twins last year. Milone has really struggled against powerful RHB and Bryant happened to post the fifth-highest wOBA (.438) and ISO mark (.327) with a 176 wRC+ when facing LHP last season.
Adonis Garcia: (ATL) @ PIT DK: $3,300 / FD: $2,400
He’s worth adding to an overlooked Braves stack in Pittsburgh.
Jake Lamb: (ARI) vs. CLE DK: $4,000 / FD: $3,300
He came through in a plus matchup tonight and faces another vulnerable RHP in Trevor Bauer.
Francisco Lindor: (CLE) @ ARI DK: $4,300 / FD: $3,700
He’s launched three homers over his last 2 appearances and Lindor also has plenty of upside as a speed threat. The Indians stay at hitter-friendly Chase Field tonight to face declining RHP Zack Grienke and the D’Backs high-priced acquisition picked up where he left off with a mediocre outing (5 IP, 2 ER, HR, 4 K, 2 BB) on Opening Day. The 33-year-old posted a 4.81 ERA with a weak 2.20 K/BB ratio at home last season and gave up a 1.23 HR/9 ratio when facing lefties at Chase Field. Lindor is fully capable of doing some more damage as part of an Indians stack this evening.
Elvis Andrus: (TEX) vs. OAK DK: $3,900 / FD: $2,900
Another solid addition to a Rangers stack against vulnerable RHP Kendall Graveman.
Corey Seager: (LAD) @ COL DK: $5,400 / FD: $4,400
If you can manage to pay up for him Seager could be a very valuable play at Coors Field tonight.
Bryce Harper: (WAS) @ PHI DK: $4,900 / FD: $4,700
Even if you’re willing to use Aaron Nola as a value play, you can consider Harper as a decent bet to launch a homer off a RHP that he’s owned in the past. As we mentioned above, he’s 7-for-11 with 2 HR, a walk and a SB in his career against Nola and he’s looking much more like the MVP-caliber Bryce Harper than the headcase that we saw during the 2016 season. With 5 H, 2 HR and 4 walks over his first 4 appearances this year, he’s a bit under priced as a truly elite option and he happens to have launched 9 HR over his last 71 at-bats at hitter-friendly Citizens Bank Park.
Nomar Mazara: (TEX) vs. OAK DK: $3,800 / FD: $3,100
Mazara is off to a red-hot start this season with multiple hits in all 4 of his appearances, as he’s 10-for-17 with 2 HR, 9 RBI and 5 runs scored as a main cog in the Rangers elite offense. That unit will certainly be worth stacking tonight against a below average RHP in Kendall Graveman, who has posted a career 4.51 ERA with a 1.23 HR/9 ratio away from massive Oakland Coliseum throughout his career. Mazara broke out as a platoon specialist last year but he’s clearly become more of a complete hitter at the young age of 21.