DraftKings Plays of the Day—7/20

Rich Holman previews the July 20 slate on DraftKings with his must plays and best values of the day.

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Top Play SP: Luis Castillo, CIN ($11,200) vs. STL


Once upon a time there was a young man named Nick that loved Luis Castillo. Turns out, he was just a year early on his. Castillo has been ridiculous this year, upping his strikeout rate from 23.3% in 2018 to 29.3% this year. The only negative has been the walk rate is up some, but when you’re striking everybody out, you can put a guy on every now and again via the free pass. Today he faces the Cardinals, who have been awful as of late. Over the last two months, the Cardinals rank dead last in wRC+ against right-handed pitching and are striking out at a 24.0% rate.

Honorable mention: Clayton Kershaw, LAD ($11,000) vs. MIA.


Value SP: Adam Plutko, CLE ($6,000) vs. KCR


Unlike Castillo, I’m not very confident about this pick. Adam Plutko gets a decent matchup with the Adalberto-less Royals, who ranked in the bottom five in the league in wRC+ against right-handed pitching before losing Mondesi. The good news is Plutko doesn’t give away any free passes to batters, walking just 2.9% of batters. The bad news is he doesn’t strike a lot of batters out, K-ing just 15.7% of batters this year. There isn’t a lot of decent value on this slate, so Plutko will most likely be my SP2 today.

Honorable Mention: Trent Thornton, TOR ($7,200) at DET.


Top Play: OF Michael Brantley, HOU ($4,500) vs. TEX


Michael Brantley has been such a spark plug in the Astros lineup this year. An already excellent offense added a guy who’s had a .390 wOBA against righties this year. He’ll get a matchup with Ariel Jurado, who has struck out just 13.9% of left-handed batters that he’s faced. One of Brantley’s best traits is plate discipline, as he leads the league in Z-Contact% this year. Jurado has also allowed a 47.3% hard-hit rate to lefties this year. Brantley has so much upside in this spot.

Honorable mention: OF Andrew Benintendi, BOS ($4,600) at BAL; OF Bryan Reynolds, PIT ($4,300) vs. PHI; OF Nelson Cruz, MIN ($4,500) vs. OAK.


Top Play: 1B Josh Bell, PIT ($4,800) vs. PHI


In case you didn’t already know, Josh Bell has been a monster this year. He has a .346 ISO and .431 wOBA against right-handed pitching and today, he gets a matchup with Zach Eflin, who’s inability to get lefties out knows no bounds. Eflin has allowed a .374 wOBA to left-handed batters this year. If you needed any more incentive, Eflin has allowed seven bombs over his last four starts.

Honorable mention: 3B Rafael Devers, BOS ($5,400) at BAL; 2B/SS Gleyber Torres, NYY ($4,500) vs. COL.


Value: OF Franmil Reyes, SDP ($3,800) at CHC


Franmil Reyes mashes left-handed pitching and gets a matchup with Jose Quintana in the hot, humid heat, with a forecasted ten-mile per hour wind blowing out to center. That’s the perfect combination for me to lock Reyes into my lineup and save some cash today. 

Honorable mention: OF Manuel Margot, SDP ($3,900) at CHC; 3B Vladimir Guerrero, Jr., TOR ($3,800) at DET; OF Jackie Bradley, Jr., BOS ($3,700) at BAL. 


Top Stack: Red Sox at Orioles (RHP Tom Eshelman)


One of the best offenses in baseball get a matchup against Tom Eshelman, who will be making his third major league start. In 10.2 innings in the majors, Eshelman has allowed two homers and six runs. Feel free to stack one to seven, as the only bats I’m skipping today are Sandy Leon and Brock Holt, and I don’t even hate Holt. My favorite bat is Rafael Devers ($5,400), but close behind is Mookie Betts ($5,300), Xander Bogaerts ($5,600), J.D. Martinez ($4,700), and Andrew Benintendi ($4,600). If you need a cheap bat, look no further than Jackie Bradley, Jr. ($3,700). Good luck today.

Honorable mention: Yankees vs. Rockies (RHP Antonio Senzatela); Pirates vs. Phillies (RHP Zach Eflin).


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is RMoss1983) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games on which I offer advice. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings, and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any nonpublic information.

Rich Holman

Tax Auditor by day (I promise I'm not the devil), dad to twin velociraptors by night. Complete sports junkie. Philly fan that only boos occasionally.

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