On Players’ Weekend Marco Gonzales ($8,500) was simple with is nickname: “Gonzo”.  And why was that?  Because he’s too busy focusing on opposing batters to bother with some ridiculous nickname, that’s why.  You may remember him from such hits as a 3-0 April with a 2.14 ERA.  His numbers took a hit as the Mariners crash landed throughout the season, but even then he’s managed to go 16-12, albeit with a 4.09 ERA.  Now he’s revved it up again in September, going 2-1 with a 2.73 ERA.  Yes, Gonzales is facing the streaking Oakland A’s, but the A’s have trouble squaring him up.  They’ve only managed to hit him to a .225 batting average/.673 OPS split.  And he has gone 3-1 verse the A’s, averaging close to seven innings per start.  And finally, the A’s clinched a playoff spot last night, they’ll be bleary eyed at best.  So save some money, and zig while others zag to bigger name and more expensive pitchers who will be more worried about staying healthy for the playoffs than pitching well.  Now on to the picks, where we’ll be focusing on who’s hot going into the final weekend.

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Blake Snell is a Cy Young winner of recent vintage.  Blake Snell has pitched a total of 13 inning since the All Star break, and only two since the end of July.  That is why a pitcher of Snell’s caliber is available for $7,500.  The Rays are in playoff mode.  They are fighting for a playoff spot, and to do that they will need Snell to get his innings up.  The Red Sox are in shut down mode.  They’ve been eliminated from the playoffs and plenty of guys like Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez are getting days off.  This will most likely be Snell’s final chance to tune up for October, so if there is a chance to get him more innings the Rays will likely take it.

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Searching for value in starting pitchers can be a fool’s errand sometimes, but going contra the Verlanders and Darvishes are the only ways to win in DFS, especially when many teams are prepping for the playoffs and resting starters.  One big time team that needs to stretch starters out is the LA Dodgers.  Rich Hill isn’t exactly the paragon of health, and that means the Dodgers are looking to stretch out Ross Stripling.  He’s been coming back from the IL this month, and doing so to the tune of a tidy 1.13 ERA.  It doesn’t take too much imagination to see him getting through six when he’s pitching in the cavernous confines of Dodger Stadium.  Tampa Bay is one hot hitter (more on him later) or two and timely hitting it’s way to an AL Wild Card spot, by no means a Juggernaut offensively.  Stripling’s low $5,500 price tag means you can load up on offense without the risk of Verlander being pulled quickly or Darvish blowing up and making Cubs fans worry even more.  Now let’s spend all that extra salary.

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Look beyond the Bogeyman of a left handed visiting starter in Coors field and start your team with the underrated and overlooked Steven Matz ($6,900).  Yes, the Rockies can be ferocious at home, but Matz has managed to string together some of his best road starts lately.  Also, the Rockies may score 6.1 runs per game at home, tops in the league, but beneath those numbers is a secret: The Rockies are only 25th in the league in wRC+ (88) against left-handed pitchers.  With a little extra cash in the back pocket lets look at the rest of the nighttime slate.

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Sometimes chalk is chalk.  Jacob deGrom, incredibly, is only the second highest cost pitcher on today’s slate at $10,600.  That is a value of at least $1,000 over most of his starts.  He still has a 2.76 ERA and 1.05 WHIP.  He’s facing an Arizona Diamondbacks team that is much less ferocious on the road, and even in ideal situations hits deGrom to a lowly .200 batting average in 80 at bats.  Now to the rest of the picks.

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It’s FanDuel slate value starting pitching time and today’s contestant is Jonathan Hernandez ($5,500) of the Texas Rangers.  He’s facing the Baltimore Orioles and their 12th ranked offense.  Now on to the rest of the picks to use up all those free dollars.

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Usually readers know my Saturday posts are all about value on the mound.  Sometimes it’s just not there.  Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and recommend the most expensive pitcher on the board, Mike Clevinger ($11,200).  There are just too many positives: He’s at home, where he’s gone 3-0 with a 1.85 ERA.  The Royals only hit .238 with a .594 OPS against him.  If that’s not enough, the wind is howling in at Progressive Field in Cleveland.  But if you think you won’t find value here you’re wrong.  Using the powerful tool of ISO over the past two weeks, along with the usual Razzball insight, we present Saturday’s all value team after a quick word from our sponsor.

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On a day when there’s Clayton Kershaw and a lot of two’s priced as Aces, hunting for value is our favorite past-time. Enter Marco Gonzales ($7,700).  You may remember him from such hits as a 3-0 April with a 2.14 ERA.  Since then he’s hit a rough patch, but he did go 3-1 with a 3.54 ERA in July, including 6.0 innings with no walks, one earned run, and eight K’s against a Detroit team that still had Nick Castellanos on July 27th.  He went 6+ innings against the Rays his last time out, with nine K’s and two earnies, but he left after being hit on the leg with a comebacker.  He should be good to go today, but just in case you could more than throw a dart at Kyle Gibson against the sneakily struggling Brewers offense for a similar value play.  Now on to the picks.

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On a day with Aces such as Morton, Syndergaard, Corbin and Soroka on today’s FanDuel slate it can be tempting to go with them and cobble together around one high priced bat or two.  Patrick Corbin and Noah Syndergaard are facing each other, which makes choosing the winner, and thus the FanDuel bonus, too close to call.  Michael Soroka has faced the Marlins a couple times and beat them soundly, but the Marlins bats have woken up a little, and you know the saying: Third time’s the charm.  And Charlie Morton is the priciest, meaning you can grab him, but you won’t be able to afford the bats you need to compete.  That leads us to dark horse Adrian Houser ($5,700).  If you look closely you find a 3.38 ERA at home.  You also find that he’s holding right hand batters to a .224 batting average/.614 OPS slash line.  Houser struggles with lefties, but all of the Rangers left handed batters are struggling right now, especially on the road.  Now on to the picks.

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On a slow day in the Majors it’s hard to find good value on FanDuel.  One such place is the seventh ranked pitcher Jaime Barria ($7,200).  He’s one spot above that on the Streamonator, but he’s also pitching against the 30th ranked Detroit Tigers offense at home at Angels Stadium in Anaheim.  Barria loves home cooking.  He’s 2-0 with a 2.04 ERA there this year.  He has a high probability of more innings and strikeouts than many others today, which equals FanDuel points.  Now on to the picks.

New to FanDuel? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well, be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays. Just remember to sign up through us before jumping into the fray. It’s how we know you care!

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