Scouting The MLB - August 8

Here's a free edition of the top DFS plays and stacking options on Friday night

Weather Report

  • Isolated storms are possible in Atlanta, but weather looks good across the country

Stackable Menu

  1. Milwaukee Brewers hosting RHP Roberto Hernandez
  2. Cleveland Indians visiting RHP Esmil Rogers
  3. Los Angeles Angels hosting RHP Allen Webster
  4. Baltimore Orioles hosting RHP Justin Masterson
  5. New York Mets visiting RHP A.J. Burnett

Longshot stack:New York Yankees hosting RHP Trevor Bauer

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Two Studs:

Madison Bumgarner (SF) @ KC: $9700 – Facing LHP Jason Vargas

For some odd reason, Bumgarner has been far better away from the spacious confines of AT&T Park this year, as he’s averaging 24.8 DK points in 13 road starts. After getting shelled in a home start against the Pirates his ERA is a whopping 5.60 in San Francisco, but sits at a pristine 1.58 on the road. He’ll look to continue that trend against a Royals squad that doesn’t strike out much, but doesn’t score much either. Kansas City is the 3rd lowest scoring home team, and has scored the fewest runs against LHP of any A.L. team this season. Aside from his implosion against Pittsburgh, Bumgarner has been lights out lately as he’s 3-0 with a 0.39 ERA and 9.85 K/9 ratio in 3 starts at the Marlins Phillies, and Mets. It will be tough for the lefty Ace to shut down an A.L. lineup complete with a DH, but he could get the better of KC’s hitters as he faces most of them for the first time.

Jose Quintana (CWS) @ SEA: $8300 – Facing RHP Hisashi Iwakuma

Quintana is quietly having one of the best seasons of any SP in baseball. He’s not at the top of the leaderboards in any individual metric, but his WAR (3.8) is the 10th best mark amongst starters in the MLB this season. The southpaw hasn’t allowed more than 3 ER in 9 straight starts, posting an 8.6 K/9 ratio with a stellar 1.68 ERA during that span. His last outing was deceptively unproductive, as a couple of rain delays and a horrendous performance by the bullpen (allowed 15 runs) led to an embarrassing loss for the White Sox. Yet Quintana should be able to bounce back in a plus matchup with the left-handed Mariners lineup. He shut Seattle out on July 5, allowing just 4 hits while striking out 10 as he produced 34.3 DK points, and the addition of a couple mediocre RHB in Austin Jackson and Chris Denorfia shouldn’t do much to limit his upside against this offense.

Value Play:

Chris Tillman (BAL) vs. STL: $6800 – Facing RHP Justin Masterson

This is the Chris Tillman we were expecting at the start of the 2014 season. The Orioles opening day starter has allowed 3 ER or fewer while posting a 3.87 K/BB ratio over his last 6 starts. He’s coming off a dominant 7-inning shutout of the Mariners, and will face a Cardinals offense that hasn’t gotten anything going on the road this year. Only San Diego has scored fewer runs than St. Louis away from home this season, and the Cardinals are sending one of the worst SP in the Majors to the mound in Justin Masterson tonight. Even if Tillman falters, he has a great chance to come away with a Win and post double-digit DK points for the 7th straight start.

Longshot Pitcher:

Anibal Sanchez (DET) @ TOR: $8300 – Facing RHP R.A. Dickey

Sanchez’s adversary (Dickey) is the true wildcard of tonight’s slate, but the Tigers RHP pitched his way back onto DFS radars last Sunday. The struggling SP struck out 12 Rockies over 7-shutout innings, allowing just 2 hits and producing 42.6 DK points in a vintage performance. That’s only 9 DK points fewer than he had produced in his previous 5 starts, and may be an indication that he’s found his confidence. This is the same cerebral pitcher that finished 3rd in A.L. CY Young Voting and posted a 2.57 ERA last season. He shut down the Blue Jays back on June 3 of this season, and is more than capable of tossing consecutive gems. Sanchez is the longshot of the night as he looks to build on the momentum of his last outing.



Carlos Santana (CLE) @ NYY: $4500 – Facing RHP Esmil Rogers

Santana has cooled off considerably since his incredible hot streak, but he still has tremendous power that could be unleashed as the Indians open a series in hitter-friendly Yankee Stadium tonight. Esmil Rogers is the latest SP to be pulled off a scrap heap and thrown into the Yankees rotation, and he may be in for a rough outing against the dangerous Indians lineup. Rogers allowed LHB to post a .371 wOBA over 72 innings last season, and has been even worse against lefties with a .479 wOBA this season. With 4 HR allowed in 11 IP, he’s sporting an absurdly poor 3.27 HR/9 ratio against LHB, so all the power-hitting lefties on the Indians roster should be on your radar tonight.

Potential Value:

Brayan Pena ($2900) has the platoon advantage against RHP Nathan Eovaldi, who really struggles against lefties. The Reds de facto 1B is hitting over .400 during the last 2 weeks yet remains priced below 3K.


Travis d’Arnaud ($2600) has crushed Phillies starter A.J. Burnett, as he’s 3 for 6 with a double and a HR against the veteran right-hander. Consider the Mets young backstop if he’s batting towards the middle of their lineup.

First Base:

Adam Laroche (WAS) @ ATL: $4100 – Facing RHP Ervin Santana

So far LaRoche has mostly been mentioned as a longshot play at 1B, but for a relatively low price, he could be one of the best options at the position tonight. The goofy-looking lefty went 6 for 11 with 2 doubles, 2 HR, and 3 BB during the Nationals recent series with the Mets, producing 60 DK points in the process. Despite his struggles last month (hit .159 in July) manager Matt Williams stuck with LaRoche in the cleanup spot and it’s paid off as he’s hitting .385 through 7 August contests. Santana is pitching much better lately, but it could be somewhat of a mirage, and he’s always struggled against the platoon. LHB are sporting a .346 wOBA against him and slugging nearly .200 points higher than right-handers. With LaRoche, you’re hoping for XBH and a BB or two to help him exceed value for the 4th consecutive game.

Potential Value:

Lucas Duda (NYM) is probably a safer selection than LaRoche for $4000. The big 1B hasn’t homered in a few games, but has solid splits against Phillies starter A.J. Burnett and could break that streak in a hurry. p>


Nick Swisher ($3600) has gone hitless in 7 at bats since returning from a mild wrist injury, but he could be one of several power-hitting Indians to stack against Esmil Rogers.

Second Base:

Jason Kipnis (CLE) @ NYY: $4400 – Facing RHP Esmil Rogers

The Yankees have played several low-scoring contests in a row, but there’s a good chance that trend stops tonight. With Rogers coming up for AAA, and the Indians Trevor Bauer struggling a bit, both offenses should be productive in the stadium with the highest HR Factor in the Majors. Kipnis has been more consistent lately as the leadoff man for the Tribe, and is 6 for 15 (.400) over his last 4 games. He has just one XBH and no SB during that span, but the dual threat possesses a unique ability to log either at any time. Again, Rogers has been hit hard by lefties over the past couple of seasons and Cleveland’s lineup should be chalk full of LHB, so their leadoff hitter may be worth deploying.

Potential Value:

Jordany Valdespin’s ($3100) only produced 2 DK points last night, but remains a solid punt play as the Marlins take on another RHP that struggles against the platoon tonight in Mike Leake.


Kolten Wong ($3800) has been a boom-or-bust option for the past couple weeks. There’s a chance he builds on last night’s multi-HR performance as the Cards open an interleague series in Baltimore.

Third Base:

Josh Harrison (PIT) vs. MIA: $4600 – Facing RHP Ian Kennedy

Harrison isn’t leaving DFS owners empty-handed these days, as he managed to post 10 DK points despite going 1-5 during the Pirates win last night. The leadoff man swiped a bag and scored a run to meet value, and has now produced double-digit DK points in 8 of his last 11 games. Tonight’s matchup isn’t nearly as enticing, but Harrison is 2 for 4 with 2 XBH against Kennedy, who has poor reverse-platoon splits as he’s allowing RHB to post a .310 wOBA this season. Until Harrison becomes the most expensive 3B on the board, he’s worth consideration as the one of the hottest hitters in the MLB.

Potential Value:

Pirates RHP Vance Worley has struggled against lefties at times and could have a hard time getting the switch-hitting Yangervis Solarte ($3300) out. The Padres newly acquired infielder has been very steady for his new squad and should be useful in 50/50 and H2H lineups.


Adrian Beltre ($4400) has been nearly invisible as opposing pitchers tend to tread lightly with the Rangers best hitter, but he’s scorched left-handers throughout his career and has good splits against Astros LHP Brett Oberholtzer.


Kris Negron (CIN) vs. MIA: $2500 – Facing RHP Nathan Eovaldi

Since SS is a relatively weak position tonight, we’re going to go all out and recommend an extreme value play. Negron has been hitting at an elite level as he’s produced 59 DK points over his last 4 games, and moved into the 6th spot of the Reds lineup as a result. Eovaldi shut down the Reds offense last Saturday, but Negron rested during that game. With the suddenly surging infielder back in their lineup, Cincy will look to shell the Marlins RHP like every other team has over the past couple of months.

Potential Value:

Ryan Flaherty ($3100) is a good value play in most formats as he’s 4 for 7 against RHP Justin Masterson, who is one of the worst SP in the MLB against LHB.


Leury Garcia ($2400) is worth consideration as another punt play as long as he’s leading off for the White Sox.


Carlos Beltran (NYY) vs. CLE: $4500 – Facing RHP Trevor Bauer

Brett Gardner may be hogging all the HRs, and Jacoby Ellsbury may have more upside due to his speed, but Beltran is actually the safest Yankees outfielder to deploy right now. The switch-hitting veteran has reached base in 14 straight games, and hit safely in 13 of those contests, as he’s batting .384 (20-52) during that span. Bauer has allowed 6+ hits in 5 straight starts, and has a troublesome 10.8% walk rate when facing LHB. The Yankees patient, left-handed lineup should give him trouble tonight, and while Beltran isn’t necessarily the best GPP candidate of the bunch, he’s a relatively safe option.

Carlos Gomez (MIL) vs. LAD: $4500 – Facing RHP Roberto Hernandez

CarGo seems to be a GPP play these days, as he’s a dual threat that can rack up DK points with HR or SB, but can also fail to reach base entirely. He’s been much better at home, where he’s batting .290 and averaging 10.7 DK PPG this season, and has a great chance to produce as Roberto Hernandez makes his Dodgers debut in Milwaukee tonight. Gomez has a .382 wOBA against RHP this season and is 2 for 8 with a double and a HR in his career against this right-hander. Deploy the Brewers leadoff man in formats where you need upside.

Christian Yelich (MIA) @ CIN: $3700 – Facing RHP Mike Leake

Yelich reached base twice and was caught stealing last night as he produced 5 DK points. He’s still averaging 9.2 DK PPG over his last 5 contests, and the aggression on the base paths is a good sign for the Marlins leadoff man. While Russell Martin, one of the best defensive catchers in the game, threw him out last night, Devin Mesoraco is far from elite behind the dish for the Reds, so Yelich should have the green light if he reaches against Mike Leake. The Reds RHP has been solid at times, but always struggles against lefties, as the .367 wOBA he’s allowing to LHB this season is the 7th worst mark amongst qualified pitchers. Consider Yelich and Jordany Valdespin as the Marlins 1-2 punch on the road tonight.

Potential Values:

David Murphy ($3900) remains a solid option in 50/50 and H2H formats if he continues to bat 2nd for the Indians.

Kole Calhoun ($3600) has really struggled over the past couple weeks, but the Angels leadoff man is a longshot to break out tonight against inexperienced RHP Allen Webster, as the Red Sox starter struggles against lefties.

Dan Robertson ($2300) is probably the best punt play at OF tonight as the Rangers face LHP Brett Oberholtzer. Their rookie RHB has been very good when he has the platoon advantage.

I will answer any lineup questions on Twitter: @nweitzer7

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