Plays of the Day
Value: Lance Lynn looked very solid in his 2017 debut after missing last season following Tommy John surgery. A RHP who posted incredible consistent numbers over five seasons before going under the knife, he’ll pitch at spacious Nationals Park tonight. Current Nats are a combined 19-for-79 (.241) with 19 K’s in their careers against Lynn, who should creep closer to his career K/9 ratio of 8.70 once he gets his footing back, but in any case, he’s a very solid value play at this generously low price.
Fade: Manny Machado has posted great splits against the platoon and the Orioles were all over LHP Drew Pomeranz when they faced him last year, but that was in the height of summer and the O’s offense has yet to show much upside while Machado is a bit out of rhythm in the first week of the season.
Team Target Stacks
Rockies: Charlie Blackmon, Nolan Arenado, DJ LeMahieu
Marlins: Dee Gordon, Giancarlo Stanton, J.T. Realmuto
Rangers: Elvis Andrus, Shin Soo-Choo, Rougned Odor
Mets: Asdrubal Cabrera, Michael Conforto, Yoenis Cespedes
Cardinals: Dexter Fowler, Randal Grichuk, Yadier Molina
Strong winds blowing OUT in Boston and Philly, chance of delays later in San Francisco.
Cole Hamels: (TEX) @ LAA DK: $10,000/FD: $9,500
He might have struggled in a season debut against the A.L. champion Indians, but Hamels still showed that he has plus stuff and he could rebound in a much better matchup tonight. The Halos posted mediocre offensive numbers and a weak .316 wOBA against LHP last year, while current Angels are a combined 46-for-207 (.222) with 43 K’s in their careers against Hamels. He should get ample run support from the red-hot Rangers lineup against a vulnerable LHP in Tyler Skaggs and he was much better on the road with a 2.40 ERA and 10-3 record away from Rangers Ballpark last season.
J.A. Happ: (TOR) vs. MIL DK: $8,000/FD: $8,500
Happ could be the best per dollar option tonight in a great matchup against a Brewers team that posted the highest K-Rate (25.5%) in the Majors and hit .254 against LHP last year. While the Brew Crew flashed plenty of power against the platoon, Happ is a crafty southpaw who can avoid the barrel of the bat, as he actually held RHB to a lower batting average (.227) and much lower Hard Contact Rate (30.4%) than lefties last season. Ryan Braun (9-for-28, 3 HR, 6 K’s) is the only Milwaukee hitter with extensive experience against Happ, so it might take them a few trips through the order to get a bead on him.
Lance Lynn: (STL) @ WAS DK: $6,300 / FD: $6,900
The strikeout numbers weren’t there for Lynn, but he looked very solid in his 2017 debut after missing last season following Tommy John surgery. A RHP who posted incredible consistent numbers over five seasons before going under the knife, he’ll pitch at spacious Nationals Park tonight. Current Nats are a combined 19-for-79 (.241) with 19 K’s in their careers against Lynn, who should creep closer to his career K/9 ratio of 8.70 once he gets his footing back, but in any case, he’s a very solid value play at this generously low price tag.
Jameson Taillon: (PIT) vs. CIN DK: $8,400/FD: $8,000
I’m only exercising caution with Taillon because his stellar numbers (7 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 6 K’s) in Boston to open the season were partially inflated by the Red Sox slow-to-warm offense as well as the 39-degree temperatures at Fenway Park that evening. Yet he’ll face a Reds team that’s been mediocre offensively thus far and he’s home, where he posted a 2.86 ERA with a 1.00 WHIP and .225 BAA over 66 IP as a rookie. One of the more talented young pitchers in the league today, Taillon could raise that 7.36 K/9 ratio from last year with an improved changeup and he does seem capable of another Quality Start given his solid 52.4% GB Rate last season.
J.T. Realmuto: (MIA) vs. ATL DK: $3,500 / FD: $2,600
Realmuto has been one of the more consistent hitters in the Marlins over the past couple of years and he’s been red hot to open the season with 11 hits, including 2 XBH and 2 HR over his first 22 at-bats while hitting safely in all 5 appearances. Tonight the Marlins are worth a look as a stack against 43-year-old Bartolo Colon, who is bound to show some cracks in his armor at some point and is facing a team that’s had success against him in the past. Current Marlins are a combined 79-for-274 (.288) with 9 HR in their careers against Colon and Realmuto is 9-for-24 with 4 doubles and a HR against the veteran.
Sandy Leon: (BOS) vs. BAL DK: $2,900 / FD: $2,500
The Red Sox could get to RHP Dylan Bundy at home and Leon is an elite contact hitter from the left side of the plate.
Welington Castillo: (BAL) vs. CIN DK: $3,800 / FD: $2,800
He’s flashed power against lefties and is one of several Orioles with a chance to go yard off LHP Drew Pomeranz.
Freddie Freeman: (ATL) @ MIA DK: $4,400 / FD: $3,600
The rest of the Braves lineup is relatively toothless, but Freeman continued to put up all-star caliber numbers with a monstrous line (4-for-5, 2 HR, double, SB, 55.6 FD points) on Sunday afternoon in Pittsburgh. He draws another plus matchup tonight against RHP Dan Straily, who has allowed a 1.32 HR/9 ratio and posted a 5.21 FIP against the platoon throughout his career, while Freeman happened to homer off him in one of his 3 plate appearances. Straily was lit up for 5 ER over 3.1 IP in his first appearance of 2017 and he could certainly struggle against an elite LHB in Freeman.
John Jaso: (PIT) vs. CIN DK: $2,900 / FD: $2,300
The Pirates LHB should draw a start tonight against aptly named RHP Rookie Davis.
Mark Trumbo: (BAL) @ BOS DK: $4,400 / FD: $3,900 as OF
Trumbo has immense power and could easily tee off on vulnerable LHP Drew Pomeranz at Fenway.
DJ LeMahieu: (COL) vs. SD DK: $4,700 / FD: $3,400
He’s found some home cooking and has flashed more upside than the rest of the Rockies lineup combined to an extent over their last two games. LeMahieu is 4-for-5 with 2 XBH and a HR during that span and he should continue to rake tonight against a washed-up RHP in Jered Weaver. While ground ball pitcher Trevor Cahill found success in the thin air last night, Weaver posted a league-worst 28.8% GB Rate along with the second-highest HR/FB ratio (18.7%) amongst qualified SPs last year. While LeMahieu doesn’t profile as your typical power hitter, he hit .391 with a .450 wOBA and 1.064 OPS at home last season.
Dee Gordon: (MIA) vs. ATL DK: $4,100 / FD: $3,200
A relative value with upside given his speed and positive splits against Bartolo Colon.
Howie Kendrick: (PHI) vs. NYM DK: $3,300 / FD: $2,800 as OF
The veteran is red hot to start the season and he could barrel up Matt Harvey at home tonight.
Jake Lamb: (ARI) @ SF DK: $3,300 / FD: $3,400
I’m trying not to chase recent stats are go purely on BvP splits, but Lamb’s generously low price tag on DK makes him an easy choice for lineups on that main DFS sites. He’s 4-for-10 with a pair of doubles in his career against Giants RHP Jeff Samardzija and homered off the hard-throwing righty when these teams faced off last Thursday. While he moves to spacious AT&T Park for the rematch, Lamb went 10-for-29 with 5 XBH and 2 HR while posting an absurd 1.183 OPS at that venue last year and he should continue to hit cleanup behind an D’Backs lineup that is stacked at the top.
Eduardo Nunez: (SF) vs. ARI DK: $3,600 / FD: $2,700
He has the platoon advantage against LHP Robbie Ray and some upside due to his speed.
Nolan Arenado: (COL) vs. SD DK: $5,200 / FD: $4,900
Stubbornness could pay off in GPP formats after Arenado posted a goose egg at Coors Field last night.
Asdrubal Cabrera: (NYM) @ PHI DK: $3,800 / FD: $2,900
The Mets face the newest member of the N.L. East and a potential punching bag tonight in Clay Buchholz, who maintained his reputation as a headcase by allowing 8 H, walking 2 and coughing up 4 ER over 5 IP in his Phillies debut last week. Now he’ll move to hitter-friendly Citizens Bank Park and face a couple of dangerous lefties, including switch hitter Asdrubal Cabrera, who happens to be 6-for-14 with 2 homers in his career against Buchholz. The former Red Sox RHP allowed lefties to hit .274 with a .342 wOBA and posted a 1.64 WHIP against the platoon last year, giving Cabrera a solid floor in this matchup.
Chris Owings: (ARI) @ SF DK: $2,900 / FD:$3,200
This young man has flashed far too much upside so far this season to be priced below $3K on DK.
Troy Tulowitzki: (TOR) vs. MIL DK: $3,900 / FD: $2,800
The Blue Jays could find some offense at home against vulnerable RHP Wily Peralta.
Dexter Fowler: (STL) @ WAS DK: $4,300 / FD: $3,200
Nationals southpaw Gio Gonzalez might’ve posted good numbers in his first start of the year, but this is still the same pitcher who looked completely showered at points while posting a 4.57 ERA and 1.34 WHIP over 32 starts last year. He struggles against a particular type of batter and the switch-hitting Fowler certainly fits the mold, as he’s 10-for-20 with 3 XBH and a HR in his career against Gio. Fowler hit .293 with a .380 wOBA and a far lower K-Rate (15.3%) as a righty last year and that makes him a solid addition to a potential Cardinals stack. .
Mitch Haniger: (SEA) vs. HOU DK: $3,400 / FD: $2,000
Every slate I check Haniger’s price tag on FanDuel, and every time I’m shocked to see him priced at the minimum $2k. The popular sleeper went nuts during the preseason and is riding that momentum into the regular season with 7 hits, including 3 HR over his last 5 appearances. He’s in a prime spot as the Mariners two-hitter with Jean Segura in front of him while Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz bat behind him and the whole top of that order could find more success in a repeat matchup with RHP Joe Musgrove after they tagged Charlie Morton in a similar spot yesterday.