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DFS Plays of the Day – 8/24/23

DFS on FD and DK for Thu., Aug 24.

Only a five-game slate tonight starting at 7:05 ET with the Orioles wrapping up their series with the Jays. There could be some rain in Pittsburgh and Baltimore, so be sure to check before everything starts.

 

Today’s SPs and 2023 Stats

 

A quick note on PLV: If you’re curious about its intricacies, check out Nick’s primer. A quick summary: PLV is a quantifier that uses several variables to assess the quality of each individual pitch; the higher the value, the better the pitch. PLA is the ERA equivalent to PLV (the lower, the better). 

Jesse Scholtens ($5,000) and Ken Waldichuk ($5,300) are two SP 2 punts on DraftKings. Waldichuk struck out seven in his last start against the O’s and the White Sox have been a dreadful offense this year (.295 wOBA, second-worst), so I guess you could go there. However, Waldichuk’s underlying numbers are frightening, and well then there’s his 5.91 ERA and 1.68 WHIP. Yikes.

Between the two, I’d roll the dice with Scholtens. He got decked in his most recent but it was Coors Field, so we can give him a pass. Before that, he tossed six innings in three straight starts including one against Texas, and has shown enough that I’d give him a shot if I’m going all the way down. The White Sox are solid home favorites tonight (-162 on FanDuel) which helps his cause.

I’ve missed the boat on Merrill Kelly all year, more or less thinking he’s overperforming. That might be true to an extent since his PLV metrics are middling. Still, here we are nearing the end of August and the man holds a 3.13 ERA and 1.18 WHIP. Pretty decent spot for him tonight at home against a Reds lineup that strikes out at a 24.3% clip (seventh-highest).

Kyle Gibson has had a couple of big games against the Twins and Tigers this year but tonight against the Jays it’s hard to build much of a case for him especially since he’s coming off a disappointing outing against the A’s. Could he pitch well against the Jays? Sure. Is there any way to see it coming? If there is, I certainly can’t tell.

If I’m taking a pitcher in this game, it’s José Berríos; I believe in his skills significantly more and he’s the same price as Gibson on DK ($8,200). They’re also the same price on FanDuel ($9,900).

However, I think I’d be more inclined to fade pitching in the Jay/Orioles game for Andrew Heaney ($7,700, $8,200 FD). I’ll admit it’s a little scary but the Twins have the worst K rate in baseball at 27.2% so there’s some added upside for him today.

Pablo López ($10,600 DK, $10,900 FD) is far and away the most talented pitcher on the slate. The only knock is that he draws a tough opponent in the Rangers (second-best team wOBA) and he’s a marginal home favorite (-130 on FD). Still, if the idea is just locking in a high floor, he’s the guy.

The discount between López and Justin Steele ($9,800 DK, $10,400 FD) isn’t enough for me despite the latter drawing a more amenable opponent (Pirates are 22nd in wOBA).

 

Bats 

 

This is an interesting game in Camden Yards. As mentioned earlier, I think Berríos is a bit better than Gibson, but the game is essentially a pick ’em so you can definitely target bats on either side.

Berríos has been noticeably worse against LHB for his career making a case for the likes of Gunnar Henderson, Adley Rutschman, Anthony Santander, and Cedric Mullins.

I like a Jays stack in tournaments. Yes, they’ve been maybe a little underwhelming this year as a whole but if we know one thing about Gibson, he can be flammable at times.

The Cubs face Andre Jackson, who has shown some ability but he’s basically a reliever who is being stretched out, so anything goes. Seiya Suzuki is one option that stands out to me. A lot has been made about his splits against RHP but I like his salary and think he’s just a good hitter who is a little undervalued right now. Jackson has shown worse splits against RHB, so he has that working in his favor.

The White Sox have the highest implied total on the board at over five runs. Their lineup has been a disaster all year but still, this is a good opportunity for Luis Robert Jr. and Eloy Jiménez against a very shaky pitcher in Ken Waldichuk and a suspect A’s pen. Jiménez in particular looks underpriced on both sites. Tim Anderson is there too. He’s been awful but he’s also very cheap and hitting leadoff, so there’s that.

I mentioned Scholtens earlier. He’d be the SP 2 I’d roll with on this slate if punting SP 2 on DK. However, he’s also a 29-year-old with next to no track record, so the A’s could certainly do some damage here, no matter how much I’d like to ignore them.

Rookie Zack Gelof is probably the most interesting bat in their lineup at this point but he is also very expensive ($5,700 DK, $4,200 FD). Seth Brown is also worth noting because of his solid track record against RHP. Ryan Noda leads the team with a .356 wOBA and Brent Rooker isn’t far behind at .342.

Brandon Williamson has been pretty decent for the Reds, but he’s still far from proven. The D-Backs, meanwhile, are right up there with the White Sox with the highest implied total on the board. I’ll always be interested in Ketel Marte anytime he’s facing a suspect left-hander like he is tonight. Tommy Pham and Christian Walker have been very productive too.

Corbin Carroll hasn’t gone yard in about a month, his salary is still pretty high, and he’s going against a lefty, which makes me think that this could be time to jump aboard for tournaments. Evan Longoria! Sure, he might be old, but he’s hitting the ball really hard and he’s really cheap.

 

Ryan Amore

Writer for PL, artist, DFS enthusiast, and occasional Yankee fan. Once won a GPP with Henderson Alvarez. A proprietor of the Ketel Marte Fan Club. Appreciates walks but only of the base on ball variety.

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