Saturday has once again given us great pitching options to choose from. Pirates’ pitcher Gerrit Cole heads the list. Considering the price tag of $10,700 and facing the Phillies at home in Pittsburgh, he’s by far my favorite pitching option of the day. As you’ll read below, there are plenty of good pitchers to go with today, but Cole has the price and matchup that just makes me want to board ship and look for the booty. He’s won his last 4 starts, and has 6 straight Quality Starts. He’s well on his way to Cy Young contention with a 9-2 record. He has 86 Strikeouts in 78 innings pitched with a 1.73 ERA and 1.10 WHIP. The Phillies rank 26th in the league in team batting average, last in the league in OPS, next to last in the league in total bases, and last in the league in total home runs. Convinced? Roy Halladay, Curt Schilling, and Cliff Lee are not out there on the mound either. How about now? Okay, Sean O’Sullivan is the opposing pitcher. Even if Cole gives up a run, O’Sullivan might give up 3 for every run Cole surrenders. O’Sullivan has 19 strikeouts in 45 inning pitched, a 4.96 ERA, a 1.39 WHIP, and a .289 BAA. Needless to say, I like the chances of Cole getting the win. Keep on reading and checkout some of the other swashbucklers I like today.
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Chris Archer, P: $11,800 – Okay, I’ve finally hopped on the Archer bandwagon. I even abruptly purchased an Archer rookie baseball card a week and a half ago. The numbers are just unreal and he’s setting MLB records over his last three starts. Today he faces the White Sox at home in Tampa Bay. However, he’s the priciest player of the day, and if you can’t fit the hitters you want in your lineup, consider a cheaper option.
Jacob deGrom, P: $10,500 – deGrom has had 5 Quality Starts in his last 5 starts that includes 44 strikeouts. I like the matchup at home in New York against the Braves. He’s only $200 less than Gerrit Cole, so I would still pick Cole over deGrom as my first pitcher.
Carlos Carrasco, P: $8,800 – He’s on the road in Detroit today. I suspect that is why he’s $2,000 less than Cole. I think the initial thought is that no one should start a DFS pitcher at Detroit. But, I like to pick a good pitcher at a good price, better than being worried about who the opponent is.
Collin McHugh, P: $7,800 – He’s struggled of late, and even his last start wasn’t too impressive. He got in trouble early but finished strong and got the win. However, as long as he continues to throw that killer slider at a high rate, I’m playing him. Today he’s at home against the Mariners.
Justin Verlander, P: $8,200 – A little pricey for a struggling pitcher who’s making his first start of the season, but I actually like Verlander today against the Indians. I’m sure he’ll be on a pitch count and won’t go further than 5 or 6 innings. Today he’s at home against the Indians.
Jimmy Nelson, P: $6,900 – I’m aware that he’s pitching against the Nationals, but Nelson seems to put fairly decent starts out there. He’s pitched past the sixth inning in 6 of his last 8 starts that includes 49 strikeouts. At this price, if you’re in a big ‘Guaranteed’ entry, consider him as your first pitcher. I wrote a lot last week about taking risks in those types of entries.
Mat Latos, P: $6,200 – Like Verlander, Latos is coming off the DL today, but he last pitched on May 21st. He pitches at home in Miami against the Rockies who aren’t too impressive on the road. In fact, how does Nelson and Latos sound in a really big ‘Guaranteed’ entry? Think anyone else would be as daring?
Mike Pelfrey, P: $5,300 – I can’t overlook him at this point. The Twins’ starter has had 4 straight Quality Starts. He still doesn’t strikeout many hitters, and that’s my main concern when considering a pitcher in DraftKings. I’d rather pay the extra thousand or so on Latos or Nelson who have the potential to strikeout 8+. The Twins are on the road in Arlington against the Rangers.
Joe Ross, P: $4,800 – I liked him last week in his pro debut. He didn’t do great, but he was bad either. With the nerves settling in he has the potential to do decent on the road in Milwaukee. I would only start Ross in a ‘Guaranteed’ entry, and not a 50/50.
Brian McCann, C: $4,600 – He’s been solid over the past few weeks. I like the matchup against Bud Norris today. I’m not sure if he’s worth the price, so I might look elsewhere.
J.T. Realmuto, C: $3,700 – The price is right for the Marlins catcher. He’s hit in all four of his last games, and homered on Friday. Check to see if he’s starting today as it seems that he’s rested right around every fourth day.
Albert Pujols, 1B: $4,600 – This is the Pujols of St. Louis right now. He’s putting up numbers all over the hitting categories. Pujols is $800 less than the most expensive first baseman Anthony Rizzo who went 0-5 with 3 strikeouts on Friday. The Angels are at home against Kendall Graveman and the Athletics.
Jose Abreu, 1B: $4,300 – I don’t think I’m starting Abreu today only because he’s facing Chris Archer. But, if I’m squeezing my 1B in my lineup, Abreu is a possibility at this price. He’s hit a home run in his last three games. I think this is where the train stops though.
Joe Panik, 2B: $3,800 – I didn’t panic last week, and I’m not panicking this week. Panik has been the best hitting second basemen over the past few weeks. At this price you can’t go wrong. The Giants are at home against Josh Collmenter too.
Todd Frazier, 3B: $4,800 – He continues to be one of the top hitting corner infielders. He’s a bit pricey but definitely worth the money. The Reds are in Chicago against Kyle Hendricks who has pitched pretty well over the past month.
Manny Machado, 3B: $4,100 – We all know the story with Machado. Two very bad knee injuries of the past two seasons. However, this season he’s really turned around. He’s still very young but has some good big league experience now. His numbers are very good and he’s even stealing bases. He’s had 2 hits in 5 of his last 6 games, and it looks like he’ll continue to be the Orioles’ leadoff hitter. The Orioles are at home in Baltimore against C.C. Sabathia.
Giancarlo Stanton, OF: $5,800 – He’s warranted this price tag as he’s been hitting the ball all over the stadium. Over the past few weeks he’s shown he can hit for average and get on base. I like the matchup at home in Miami against Rockies’ pitcher David Hale.
Billy Burns, OF: $4,000 – How he is still this cheap, I don’t know, but I like it. How can you pass on Burns? He’s getting on base consistently and is always a threat to steal bases. He continues to be the Athletics’ leadoff hitter. The A’s are in Anaheim against CJ Wilson.
Gregory Polanco, OF: $4,400 – Did you realize that Polanco has 16 stolen bases on the season? I didn’t. The Pirates’ leadoff hitter doesn’t have overwhelming overall stats this season, but I like the matchup against Public Swashbuckler Number 1.
I’m Only Happy When It Rains
Chance of thunderstorms in Arlington in the Twins/Rangers’ game. Don’t worry, it looks as though it’ll clear in the early evening. Same can be said for the Phillies/Pirates except there’s a slightly higher chance the rain and thunder could continue into the evening. I’ll be glued to this forecast as I’ll be starting Gerrit Cole. Decent chance of thunderstorms in St. Louis in the Royals/Cardinals’ game, and just north the same can be said for the Reds/Cubs’ game in Chicago.
Doing Lines in Vegas