DFS Plays of the Day – July 29

Ryan Amore previews Thursday's DFS slate.

Only five games to look at tonight, and that could dwindle to just four with some rain lurking in Boston. Let’s get to it! 


The Top Tier



Frankie Montas got a ton of swings and misses his last time out against the Mariners as he racked up ten strikeouts backed by a 38% CSW. However, he might have a trickier time replicating that performance tonight given that the Angels are a stingier bunch when it comes to strikeouts (22.9%, 21st). Still, of the few options we’re left with tonight, especially with a potential rainout in Boston, Montas is one of the better ones by far.

Freddy Peralta leads the way with a 35% K rate. And by a good margin too with Joe Musgrove and Eduardo Rodríguez tied at 27.4%. Unfortunately, we’re dealing with some workload pushback from the Brewers as they held him to 51 pitches his last time out. Note that that was a planned tandem start with Adrian Houser, who pitched last night. Craig Counsell has made it clear, though, that they are going to manage workloads moving forward. As far as tonight goes? Who knows. My best guess is that he’s probably not on as strict of a pitch count, so maybe something like 75 is a possibility. But again, it’s a guess. The takeaway is that Peralta’s floor and ceiling take a hit moving forward, and it’s probably best to wait for his salary to drop some given the uncertainty.

Similarly, Casey Mize is another pitcher who has seen his pitch count trend down over his last few starts.

Joe Musgrove is a man in search of a ceiling. There’s a certain floor here though given that he’s the biggest favorite on the board (-264) and, well, it is the Road Rockies. An $8,200 price tag should make him a popular option on DraftKings. Musgrove’s ability to be efficient is there with just a 6.2% walk rate and 1.01 WHIP, it’s just a case of can we get some K’s to go along with it? The last time he got six K’s, though, was against this same Rockies team.



Bats and Stacks

  • DET (5.6) vs Alexander Wells (LHP) – 4.3% K-BB, .398 xwOBA, 1.55 WHIP, 7.27 xERA – The Tigers stand out tonight as you don’t often see them attached to such a high total. We don’t have a great sample size with Wells, just 10.1 IP so it’s difficult to draw any sort of conclusion. He has, at least, shown very impressive control in the minor leagues (3.3% BB% with Triple-A Norfolk). Akil Baddoo has been one of this year’s breakouts and is still priced affordably as the leadoff man even though it’s not ideal given L/L. The switch-hitting Robbie Grossman is cheap and has shown off some reasonable HR/SB ability along with a .359 OBP. Jonathan Schoop was scratched last night with a back injury. If he returns, he’s shown enough power to consider as an option at 2B. Overall, the Tigers haven’t been too good of an offense against LHP, ranking 23rd by wOBA at .309. If they figure to draw a lot of attention in tournaments, it’s a spot that might be worth fading considering that.


  • MIL (4.7) at Chad Kuhl (RHP) – 7.1% K-BB, .330 xwOBA, 1.36 WHIP, 4.67 xERA – Kuhl hasn’t shown much of a split this year. But, for his career, he’s been way more susceptible to LHB, with a .357 wOBA allowed versus just .312 against RHB. With that in mind, Kolten Wong makes sense as the leadoff man. For DraftKings, Omar Narvaez is one of the better plays at catcher on a thin slate. He didn’t pan out for the Blue Jays, but Rowdy Tellez is showing signs of life lately. He’s one of the best punts on the slate given his power upside. With Christian Yelich out, Avisaíl García is probably the best overall hitter here and he’s also very affordable on both sites. 


  • TOR (5.0) at Eduardo Rodríguez (LHP) – 21.6% K-BB, .295 xwOBA, 1.35 WHIP, 3.66 xERA – You know the deal with the Blue Jays. They’re liable to break the slate on any given night. Rodriguez, though, definitely has the skills to stifle them tonight despite his 5.23 ERA so there’s some merit in fading them beyond the potential rainout. While Rodriguez has allowed .331 wOBA to RHB this year it’s backed by just a .284 xwOBA. So there could be some positive regression headed his way.


  • BOS (5.2) vs Hyun-Jin Ryu (LHP) – 14.3% K-BB, .316 xwOBA, 1.18 WHIP, 4.25 xERA – Ryu has shown his usual excellent control, however, his K rate has dipped this season to below 20%. Boston, meanwhile, has been a productive offense all season and they’ve got an implied total of over five runs. Ryu has been a sneaky reverse splits guy, so don’t overlook Rafael Devers and Jarren Duran, who is a potential value on both sites. 


  • BAL (4.6) at DET Casey Mize (RHP) – 13.5% K-BB, .337 xwOBA, 1.13 WHIP, 4.90 xERA – The Orioles are an offense that I think might get overlooked. In which case this is a potential leverage spot in tournaments that shouldn’t be overlooked. Mize has a 3.58 ERA and 1.13 WHIP heading into tonight but there’s some merit in betting on at least some regression moving forward (4.90 xERA, .305 wOBA/ .337 xWOBA). Mize has allowed a .370 xwOBA to lefties so Cedric Mullins makes sense as a contrarian option hitting leadoff. While D.J. Stewart is a potential punt play with power. If you’re stacking this spot, Trey Mancini and Ryan Mountcastle seem like the easy includes.


  • OAK (4.3) at LAA Dylan Bundy (RHP) – 14.6% K-BB, .335 xwOBA, 1.41 WHIP, 4.83 xERA – Alex Cobb is dealing with a blister so it looks like the A’s will see Dylan Bundy tonight. This means, fire up the lefties as Bundy has long been tortured by them and that has played out this year too (.371 wOBA allowed/ .338 xwOBA to LHB). Matt Olson is one of—if not, the best—hitter on the slate from a power standpoint. Although, Shohei Ohtani might like a word. This is a team that warrants stack consideration as well given Bundy’s struggles this year. Against RHB Bundy has allowed a .363 wOBA (.333 xwOBA). 


  • SD (5.1) vs COL Kyle Freeland (LHP) – 9.9% K-BB%, .335 xwOBA, 1.47 WHIP, 4.83 xERA. It’s probably best to take Freeland’s numbers with a grain of salt, given his home park. And he has been pitching well of late as he stymied the Dodgers twice in his last two starts. Still, the Padres are here by virtue of being one of the higher upside offenses on a short slate. Fernando Tatís Jr, shocking I know, is once again a top play.


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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