DFS Plays of the Day – July 14

Previewing Thursday's DFS slate.

Tonight’s 11-game slate is highlighted by what should be a fantastic pitcher’s duel on the west coast between Corbin Burnes and Carlos Rodón. Meanwhile, Atlanta and the Blue Jays could be primed to tilt the slate in potential blow-up spots.


Top Tier Pitching 

Note: As we go through tonight’s pitching options, you’ll find their line from their previous outing, and in the table above you’ll find their stats from this season.

Carlos Rodón: ($9,300 DK, $10,900 FD):@ SD (W) – 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 12 Ks – 27 Whiffs, 40% CSW, 112 pitches.

Corbin Burnes: ($10,600 DK, $11,300 FD):vs CHC (ND) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 26 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 100 pitches.

The last game of the night features a pitcher’s duel between two of the best in the NL and should be a fun one to watch. You can’t argue against Burnes, but with this game as basically a pick ’em, I do like Rodón between the two on DraftKings where he is coming at a more appreciable discount. Although, that might be the more popular approach considering that Rodón is coming off a complete game, which might leave Burnes as a little less rostered than he should be.

Framber Valdez: ($9,700 DK, $10,300 FD): @ OAK (L) – 8.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 96 pitches.

Relative to Burnes and Rodón, Valdez doesn’t have the strikeout ability, so he seems like a contrarian option on DraftKings where he is near his peak salary of $10,200 which came back on April 19th, his third start of the year. The argument for Valdez is a rag-tag Angels lineup that has struck out at a league-worst rate of 26.5% on the year, and over the past 30 days, they’ve mustered a .268 team wOBA; only the A’s are worse during that span.

Tyler Anderson: ($9,000 DK, $8,700 FD): vs CHC (ND) – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 94 pitches.

Anderson has been everything the Dodgers could have hoped for, but he otherwise doesn’t stand out considering all of the other options on tonight’s loaded slate. He gets a forgettable matchup against the Cardinals, who are tied for 13th in team wOBA at .315.



Mid-tier/Value Pitching

Kevin Gausman: ($8,600 DK, $10,100 FD):vs TB (ND) – 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 42 pitches.

On DraftKings, we’re getting a massive discount on Gausman, who is making his return from an ankle injury that caused him to leave his start on July 2nd. The injury is the only mark against him, but to that extent, I haven’t seen anything that indicates he’ll be on a hard pitch count. He’ll have the added bonus of facing a Royals team that will be down several regulars including Andrew Benintendi and Hunter Dozier.

Triston McKenzie: ($8,300 DK, $9,300 FD): @ KC (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 5 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 88 pitches.

The Guardians are one of the strongest favorites on the board as they’ll host the Tigers. McKenzie is not for the faint of heart given his suspect command, which has come with an elevated barrel rate allowed of 11.6% along with an xwOBA of .348. But, he has added appeal tonight against the Tigers, who have been one of the least productive offenses in baseball with a .277 team wOBA, second-last.

Kyle Wright ($8,500 DK, $10,500 FD): vs WSH (W) – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 42% CSW, 84 pitches.

Nestor Cortes ($8,800 DK, $9,900 FD):@ BOS (ND) – 3.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 73 pitches.

Wright and Cortes have the benefit of being backed by hard-hitting offenses and find themselves as two of the evening’s strongest favorites. Of the two, I’d give the edge to Cortes given that the Reds are a little more strikeout friendly with a team K rate of 24%, fourth-highest, as opposed to the Nationals at 19.1%, second-lowest.

Carlos Carrasco ($7,600 DK, $8,900 FD):vs MIA (ND) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 92 pitches.

Carrasco is one of the cheapest options on DraftKings that has a real chance at netting 20 points. He’ll face the Cubs who have been just about average offensively; the wind doesn’t look like it should be a factor tonight at Wrigley Field.

Sonny Gray ($8,000 DK, $9,000 FD):@ TEX (L) – 4.2 IP, 5 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 0 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 82 pitches.

Luis Castillo ($8,900 DK, $9,500 FD):vs TB (ND) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 108 pitches.

Castillo always carries double-digit strikeout upside but gets a tough draw as a massive road dog against the Yankees. I feel like he would be more interesting as a potential tournament play if he were a little cheaper. But then again the field will probably feel the same way meaning he’ll likely be ignored on a slate with so many options leaving him worth considering if you’re looking to go against the grain in tournaments.

Sonny Gray is someone who I’d normally have some interest in at his $8,000 salary on DraftKings, but the strikeouts have really dried up lately. He had none in his last start against Texas and not a single whiff on his slider, which seems like a big red flag. He’s worth keeping an eye on considering his track record but based on his recent starts, it might be best to look elsewhere.

One last name is Reid Detmers; he’s been getting more strikeouts lately. Maybe it’s a mirage, maybe it sticks, who knows. While he’s probably not worth the dice roll tonight against the Astros, he’s worth keeping an eye on as he could be an option moving forward.

Bats and Stacks

  • ATL (5.8 implied run total) at WSN Aníbal Sánchez (RHP): Sánchez is making his first start since late 2020, a season in which he finished with a 6.62 ERA and 1.66 WHIP across 11 starts. Safe to say this feels like an eruption spot for Atlanta. Matt Olson, who has homered in two straight, should be massively popular on DraftKings at $4,500.
  • TOR (n/a implied run total) vs KC TBD: The Royals have yet to announce a starter. And they’ll be down ten players for the trip to Toronto due to not being unvaccinated including Hunter Dozier and Andrew Benintendi. It kind of feels like this game might get out of hand. On DraftKings, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. at $4,900 against a likely suspect Royals starter seems like a good idea, doesn’t it?
  • LAD (5.0 implied run total) at STL Dakota Hudson (RHP) 4.00 ERA, 1.38 WHIP: The Dodgers could do some damage against Hudson and his 2.4% K-BB%, the lowest on the slate. His 5.25 xERA and .370 xwOBA hint at potential regression too. Max Muncy seems too cheap on FanDuel at $2,600.
  • CLE (5.3 implied run total) vs DET Elvin Rodriguez (RHP) 11.51 ERA, 1.82 WHIP: It’s not easy being Elvin. Small sample, but through four starts he’s allowed a .464 wOBA along with a 16.7% K rate. Yikes. 


Honorable MentionsNYY vs CIN (RHP Luis Castillo), MIN vs CWS (RHP Jonny Cueto).


Value Bats


Design by J.R. Caines (@JRCainesDesign on Twitter and @caines_design on Instagram)

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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