So Didi was activated and played on Friday, and FanDuel surprised the heck out of me by preemptively raising his price to $3,000. The only conclusion I can draw from this is that random price setting guy at FanDuel reads my articles. So thank you, random FanDuel Price Setting Guy for doing the dirty work and making Didi Gregorius $3,000 instead of $2,000, you truly are a Real American Hero (cue the music from those Bud Light ads about Real American Heros / Real Men of Genius). I got nothing else for an introduction today, but the next time I need FanDuel to do something, I shall make sure to include it in the article.

On to the picks…

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PITCHERS

Justin Verlander, P: $11,100 – This is not an elite matchup, but it is an elite pitcher. Verlander has a 33.1% strikeout rate and a 5.1% walk rate and has a long leash. The Brewers have a really good lineup and this won’t be easy, but Verlander is the best pitcher on the slate.

Joey Lucchesi, P: $7,900 – The discount here is pretty big and it might come in handy. The Giants don’t strike out (17.3%), but they can’t hit a lick (.314 wOBA) and the Lucchesi should be able to get some extra innings to make up for the lack of strikeouts.

HITTERS

Toronto Blue Jays – Facing David Hess is always a good day for an offense. He doesn’t get strikeouts (17.1%), walks guys (8.3%) and doesn’t get ground balls (32.5%). Everyone on the team is cheap so you’re just picking out the best plays and roster construction. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ($3,100) is the best hitter on the team and is the top option. Justin Smoak ($3,300, .386 wOBA and .266 ISO) is the next best guy on the team. It’s a pretty big drop off after these 2 in terms of hitter quality, Randal Grichuk ($2,900, .322 wOBA and .243 ISO) is an OK hitter, but you’re really bomb hunting with him. Rowdy Tellez ($2,400, .337 wOBA and .234 ISO) is similar but at a $500 discount. Hess is bad enough that anyone is viable at this point and it’s just roster construction, except for Luke Maile. Don’t play Luke Maile.

Baltimore Orioles – On the other side of this game, Edwin Jackson is pitching and Edwin Jackson is remarkably similar to David Hess: 17.1% strikeouts, 9.3% walks and 38.8% ground balls. Jackson is a worse pitcher than Hess but the Orioles don’t have anyone as good as Vlad Jr. or Smoak. Trey Mancini ($3,700, .334 wOBA and .201 ISO) and Jonathan Villar ($3,100, .323 wOBA and .133 ISO) are the top plays, but Mancini is on the expensive side and Villar just slaps the ball on the ground and tries to run his way into points. Anthony Santander is a cheap value but isn’t very good, so it’s just a value play. The Orioles are really bad and who you play is almost entirely roster construction if you’re not playing Mancini, Villar or Santander. That said, a lot of those really bad players (Chance Sisco, Rio Ruiz, Chris Davis, Keon Broxton, etc.) are really cheap, so using one or two to make the lineup work everywhere else is entirely viable.

Nelson Cruz, OF: $3,600 – Tommy Milone is an extreme strike throwing flyball guy who if he actually was above average in strikeouts would be elite, but he doesn’t get strikeouts, so he isn’t. Cruz still crushes lefties with a .411 wOBA and .318 ISO and is the top play at the price here. C.J. Cron (.425 wOBA and .289 ISO) is also viable here, but at $3,600, he’s a little expensive for me.

Jorge Soler, OF: $3,200 & Whit Merrifield, OF: $3,600 – Daniel Norris is a below average pitcher. He doesn’t get strikeouts vs righties (20.8%), is ok at throwing the ball over the plate (7.3%), and has a below average ground ball rate (38.8%). Jorge Soler hits lefties pretty well (.370 wOBA and .254 ISO) but not quite as good as Whit Merrifield (.385 wOBA and .210 ISO), who also has some stolen base equity. The discount you get from Whit to Soler may be worth it. Adalberto Mondesi isn’t in the same conversation as a hitter (.338 wOBA and .200 ISO) and he’s the most expensive, but his steal equity is right there with Whit.

I’m Only Happy When It Rains

It looks like a clear night.

Doing Lines In Vegas

I like the Mariners to go over the 3.6 runs they are projected for as of this writing. Berrios is probably facing 5 lefties, most of who are OK, and the right handers up top have some pop and are out of the right handed power graveyard in Seattle. For those who only can bet the standard lines, I’m also comfortable betting the game over of 9.5.

  1. John says:
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    I’m not so sure that mariners go over 3.6, they might go over 3.4…..

    • cinthree

      cinthree says:
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      LOL. Phrased that wrong for sure – yes, I know it’s not an actual line, but my point was their implied total was 3.6 at the time of the writing, and I believe they will beat that. I’ll make sure to phrase it better in the future.

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