DFS Plays of the Day – August 17

Ryan Amore previews Tuesday's DFS slate.

Tuesday brings us a busy 14-game slate. Well, 15, considering DraftKings including the Yankee/Red Sox game, the second leg of a scheduled double-header. With so many games on the board, I won’t mention that game here, outside of saying that the Red Sox bats are pretty cheap if you want to get creative in a tournament lineup, Rafael Devers ($4,100), J.D. Martinez ($3,600), and Xander Bogaerts ($3,700) stand out the most. They’ll face rookie Luis Gil


The Top Tier


At the top on DraftKings, the pricing is weird. Burnes ($10,200) just seems way too cheap especially relative to the other options. Framber Valdez ($10,000) and Sandy Alcantara ($9,800) have upside, but on paper, the nominal difference in salary between them and Burnes doesn’t make much sense, leaving them as tournament options.

On FanDuel, you are getting a little bit more of a salary gap between Burnes ($11,500) and the rest of the field, with Chris Bassitt ($10,300) as the second-highest option, but even still, there’s probably not enough value to account for the strikeout gap, with his 36.1% leading the field by a wide margin, with Manoah second at 29.3%. Burnes is a fade at your own risk sort of a play tonight. 



Value/Mid-Tier Pitchers


Alek Manoah was dominant in his last start against the Angels (6.2 IP, 11 K’s, 2 ER, and 36.8% CSW). His four-seamer led the charge with a beautiful 45% CSW (19/42). His 20.7% K-BB on the year is right up there at the top, ignoring that Burnes fellow.

Huascar Ynoa is making his return today after a long absence with a broken hand, his last start being way back on May 16. In his last rehab start, he threw 83 pitches across four and a third innings with seven K’s. I like to take a wait and see approach when a pitcher is out this long, but it’s not a bad spot for him against the Marlins (.298 team wOBA, 27th) if you want to roll the dice on him as an SP2 on DraftKings. Though, there might be some regression lurking (.288 wOBA/.334 xwOBA, 3.02 ERA/4.84 xERA). 

At a very similar price point ($7,100) on DraftKings is Germán Márquez, who definitely has upside for tournaments at that salary. He has pitched really well against the Padres already twice this year too, but it’s Coors Field and the weather looks pretty good for hitting, so there is, of course, huge risk.

At a similar price to Manoah is Logan Webb ($8,800). He was effective his last time out, recording a 36.3% CSW against the Rockies. Overall, he’s held opposing batters to just a .289 xwOBA. I would side with Manoah on DraftKings ($8,600). On FanDuel, though, Webb seems like an easy value at just $7,600.

Vladimir Gutierrez’s underlying numbers aren’t great, but he’s a strong home favorite (-152) and this current Cubs lineup is a wreck so I think that puts him in play as a borderline SP 2 option on DraftKings ($7,000). 

At $6,900 on DraftKings I have more interest in Bailey Ober, who is coming off an impressive outing against the White Sox his last time out (35.4% CSW). There’s not a great ceiling here in terms of pitch count, probably around 85 or so, but he’s shown the K upside to put him on the board. His K-BB% numbers in the minors were very impressive: 24.6% with Triple-A St. Paul this year (four starts), and they’ve been excellent at every stop prior, too. He’s shown some pretty sharp splits, with lefties giving him trouble (.380 wOBA allowed/.350 xwOBA), but outside of José Ramírez there is not much here in that respect for Cleveland. 


Bats and Stacks


  • LAD (5.8) vs. Wil Crowe (RHP) 9.7% K-BB, .353 xwOBA, 1.56 WHIP, 5.48 xERA: Crowe has actually been far worse against RHB this season (.393 xwOBA) as opposed to LHB (.301 xwOBA). Still, Max Muncy (.427 xwOBA this season) and Corey Seager (.363 xwOBA) are always strong plays against a questionable RHP like Crowe, regardless of his unusual splits. On FanDuel, especially as they both seem too cheap at $3,600 and $3,200 respectively, the Dodgers are an easy stack to get to over there. If you’re looking to spend at catcher, Will Smith (.371 xwOBA) is your guy. While Cody Bellinger ($4,200 DK, $3,500 FD) should be back in there lower in the order if you’re looking to be different in tournaments. 


  • HOU (5.9) at KC Daniel Lynch (LHP) 9% K-BB, .375 xwOBA, 1.61 WHIP, 6.33 xERA: The lefty has surrendered a 13.5% barrel rate, not good, and while he has allowed just a .270 wOBA to LHB, it’s backed by a .372 xwOBA, something to keep in mind if you’re considering Yordan Álvarez and Michael Brantley, as L/L matchups tend to stifle roster percentages. 


  • TOR (5.6) at WSN Erick Fedde (RHP) 11.3% K-BB, .336 xwOBA, 1.42 WHIP, 4.90 xERA: The Jays get a suspect righty in Fedde. But they are likely still down George Springer (ankle), especially without the benefit of the DH. On DraftKings, they are a tough team to stack with Marcus Semien (.322 xwOBA), Bo Bichette (.349 xwOBA), and Teoscar Hernández (.369 xwOBA) all priced up, but I think you can expect to see a ton of Vladimir Guerrero Jr./strong> (.419 xwOBA) across all formats. Alejandro Kirk (.343 xwOBA) is an upside value option at catcher. 


  • COL (5.9) vs SD TBD: The Padres have yet to announce a starter for today’s game, it’s Coors Field, with the wind blowing out, so you know the upside here. Connor Joe (.356 wOBA/ .357 xwOBA) is an excellent value on both sites if he keeps hitting leadoff. He’s shown good OBP ability and has been productive so far in a limited sample, just 139 PA.


  • MIN (5.6) vs CLE Eli Morgan (RHP) 17.1% K-BB, .338 xwOBA, 1.28 WHIP, 4.97 xERA: There’s some very good value with Twins bats on DraftKings in particular. Josh Donaldson (.385 xwOBA) sticks out the most in terms of power upside, he’s just $3,500 on DraftKings, an excellent value for all formats. 


  • CIN (5.3) vs CHC Kyle Hendricks (RHP) 12.4% K-BB, .333 xwOBA, 1.34 WHIP, 4.80 xERA: The Reds are without one of their mashers in Jesse Winker, but there’s still plenty of power to go around here and in the hitter-friendly GABP too. Hendricks has allowed a .362 xwOBA to LHB, so Joey Votto makes sense, he’s having a brilliant 2021 season with a scorching .410 xwOBA. Mike Moustakas (.285 xwOBA) is priced up for the spot on DraftKings ($4,900) and is probably more suited for tournaments as part of a stack, he is, however, very affordable on FanDuel at just $2,600 and should be popular there at 2B. The lefty Tyler Naquin (.333 xwOBA) is a potential punt play here too.


  • SD (5.4) at COL Germán Márquez: No, I don’t want to pick on Márquez either, but it’s Coors, you know the drill, it’s a tough matchup for the Padres, but even the best of pitchers can have nightmare outings here. 



Value Bats



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Ryan Amore

A proprietor of the Ketel Marte Fan Club, Ryan Amore has been writing things at Pitcher List since 2019. He grew up watching the Yankees and fondly remembers Charlie Hayes catching the final out of the '96 WS. He appreciates walks but only of the base on ball variety.

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