Scouting The MLB - July 1

Scouting The MLB - July 1

Our Daily Fantasy Sports expert breaks down Tuesday's MLB slate

Weather Report

  • Showers throughout the evening in Minnesota, may result in a delay
  • Storms expected in Pittsburgh that could affect value of all players in that game

Stackable Menu

  1. Los Angeles Angels visiting RHP Scott Carroll
  2. Washington Nationals hosting LHP Christian Friedrich
  3. Baltimore Orioles hosting RHP Nick Martinez
  4. Boston Red Sox hosting RHP Edwin Jackson
  5. Texas Rangers visiting RHP T.J. McFarland

Longshot stack: Kansas City Royals visiting RHP Ricky Nolasco


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Pitchers

Two Studs:

David Price (TB) @ NYY: $11,900 – Facing RHP Hiroki Kuroda

The new Yankee Stadium is a tough place to pitch, but Price is a tough LHP that has held his own with a 3.93 ERA, .253 BAA, and a 5-2 record in 11 career starts in the Bronx Bombers' new home. His price has continued to rise because he has an absurd 54 Ks over his last 5 starts, and that's covered up any mistakes from a DFS perspective as he's produced 30+ DK points in 4 of those outings. Tonight he'll face a left-handed Yankees lineup that has struck out the 6th most times in the A.L. against LHP. While he'll be pitching in a stadium with the highest HR Factor in the Majors, Price has held LHB powerless in his career as their sporting a measly .094 ISO against him. He's been a bit more vulnerable this season, but as he's pounded the strike zone (just 5 BB to his 54 Ks in June), the results have improved and he is clearly the top SP option on the board tonight.

Hisashi Iwakuma (SEA) @ HOU: $8600 – Facing RHP Jarred Cosart

It's hard to believe, but Iwakuma finished 3rd in AL CY Young voting last season, and his peripheral stats are not much worse this season. In fact, some of his numbers are better. His 6.88 K/BB ratio is an improvement, his ground ball rate is up from 48.7% to 54.7%, and his SIERA (Skill Interactive ERA) is 3.02, whereas last season he finished with a 3.33 mark. So why is his actual ERA (3.48 vs. 2.66) much worse? Perhaps he's been a bit unlucky with a .290 BABIP, and he's stranding runners a bit less often (77% LOB compared to 81.9% last year), but he's the same pitcher that can dominate MLB lineups. Iwakuma has a 2.72 ERA and 9.5 K/9 ratio in 6 career start against Houston. The Astros have struck out the 2nd most times in the MLB (731), and their collective average of .236 is 3rd worst in the Majors, so this is a good spot for him to bounce back from two poor starts.



Two Duds (Value Plays):

Mike Leake (CIN) @ SD: $8300 – Facing RHP Ian Kennedy

The latest SP to be fortunate enough to face the Padres inept offense comes into this matchup pretty hot. Leake forced the Blue Jays to pound the ball into the ground as he quieted their red-hot offense on June 21, and followed that up with a masterful 8-inning performance where he allowed 4 H, 1 ER, and stuck out 12 Giants in San Francisco. Coincidentally, the last time Leake faced San Diego he went 8 innings, allowed just 2 H, 1 ER, and struck out 5. He has a career-high ground ball rate (54.3%) this season, and his troubling 13.1% HR/FB ratio shouldn't be much of an issue in cavernous Petco Park tonight. Again, the Padres have scored 5 runs over their last 4 games....and remian the worst offense team in terms of OBP in over 100 years. There's just nothing scary about using a mid-tier pitcher against San Diego.

James Shields (KC) @ MIN: $7700 – Facing RHP Ricky Nolasco

Like Iwakuma, Shields is under priced based on his track record, and he could be in line for a Quality Start if this game is played through after a possible rain delay. Shields isn't striking batters out like he has in past seasons (7.01 K/9), but his ability to pitch deep into ball games makes up for it on DraftKings. He wasn't able to eat too many innings in his last start against the Twins, as he made a costly fielding error to extend the 2nd inning, and ended up allowing 6 unearned runs in that frame. He was up to 115 pitches by the time he was removed in the 5th inning, marking his second shortest start of the year. Shields is a road warrior (3.04 road ERA last 3 seasons) that is more than capable of bouncing back from a couple of rough outings, and limiting a Twins offense that is scoring just 2.3 runs per game over their last 6 contests. He probably won't wow you with K totals or produce a ton of fantasy points, but is worth a look in 50/50 and H2H formats.



Batters

Catcher:

Buster Posey (SF) vs. STL: $4100 – Facing LHP Marco Gonzales

Posey has quietly turned his horrendous season around by batting .364 during the month of June, and he has a chance to carry that momentum into July in a plus matchup tonight. The most inexperienced pitcher on the board, Gonzales was predictably rocked as he made his MLB debut at Coors Field last week, and ran into trouble with some of the Rockies' dangerous RHB. Posey is another slugger that mashes LHP, as he's hitting .341 against lefties in his career, and .323, with just 2 Ks in 64 at bats this season. He has a career .404 OBP against LHP, and his command of the strike zone against lefties should help against a rookie that walked 2 of the 13 RHB he faced at the Major League level. Posey has produced DK points in 9 of his last 10, and 23 of his last 25 outings, and it's hard to imagine him coming up empty tonight.

Potential Value:

Anibal Sanchez cooled off John Jaso (OAK) last night, but the LHB is 2 for 3 against Rick Porcello and could be a relatively safe play at $3600, especially if he's batting 2nd.



First Base:

David Ortiz (BOS) vs. CHC: $5000 – Facing RHP Edwin Jackson

The shockingly good Jake Arrieta stymied the Red Sox offense last night, but Boston's hitters should bounce back against an inconsistent hurler like Jackson. The Cubs RHP has given up 7 HR, and 28 ER over his last 7 starts. He walked at least 2 batters in each of those outings, which clearly compounded the damage, and is struggling to throw strikes with a 10% walk rate this season. Ortiz has drawn 6 walks in 26 appearances against Jackson, and he's 9 for 20 with 2 doubles, 2 HR, and 8 RBI when he puts the ball in play. Lefties are sporting a .391 wOBA against Jackson, and he has a 6.70 ERA on the road this year. In 6 starts at Fenway Park, he's posted a 7.36 ERA and .357 BAA, so a Red Sox stack would not be a terrible idea this evening.

Potential Values:

Steve Pearce (BAL) has caught fire once again and may continue batting 2nd with Manny Machado suspended. He's a decent value at $4000 and will face weak RHP Nick Martinez.

Eric Campbell (NYM) could be an extreme value at $2700. He's hit safely in 6 straight starts and should bat cleanup against LHP Mike Minor.



Second Base:

Matt Carpenter (STL) @ SF: $4000 – Facing RHP Tim Lincecum

Good for Lincecum, he picked on the woeful Padres to earn his 2nd no-hitter in as many seasons, but he better be on point against a legitimate MLB lineup tonight. Carpenter will look to jump start the Cardinals offense, and he's been doing a good job of setting the table with a .381 OBP over the last 7 days. Lincecum has as many walks (19) as strikeouts, and is allowing lefties to post a .354 wOBA at home this season. AT&T Park is huge, making it difficult to hit homers, but easier for contact hitters like Carpenter to place line drives in the outfield. Perhaps that's why he's batting an absurd .533 (8 for 15) in limited trips to the Bay throughout his career. He has a great chance to extend his DK-point streak to 13 games.

Potential Value:

A.J. Burnett was careful with Derek Dietrich (MIA), as he walked the 2B twice in their last meeting. But the Marlins' young lefty has a powerful stroke and is a dangerous matchup for the Phillies' aging RHP.



Third Base:

Anthony Rendon (WAS) vs. COL: $4600 – Facing LHP Christian Friedrich

Rendon's splits against LHP jump off the page. He's slashing .351/.568/.963 this season, and 7 of his 19 career HR have come against lefties in significantly fewer at bats. Tonight the Nationals host Friedrich, who was getting pummeled at the AAA level and has been an easy stack target in two Major League starts against the Brewers this year. With Bryce Harper and Ryan Zimmerman back in the lineup, the Nationals are heavy favorites (-232) tonight, and their offense could be extremely productive. Rendon is coming off a great June where he hit .319 with 26 RBI, and he could be both scoring and driving in runs as the Nationals' potential 2-hitter.

Potential Value:

Luis Valbuena (CHC) didn't make the most of a plus matchup against Jake Peavy last night, but he's still $3100 and tonight he will face the piñata that has been Clay Buchholz this season.



Shortstop:

Dee Gordon (LAD) vs. CLE: $4400 – Facing RHP Justin Masterson

Gordon is in a great position to succeed tonight as he faces Masterson, a lumbering RHP that struggles on the road, and really struggles to get lefties out. The Indians starter is allowing LHB to post a .411 wOBA, and has a 6.65 ERA in 9 road starts this season. He also has a very low 5.94 K/9 and a very high 4.68 BB/9 against lefties, which is important for a leadoff man like Gordon, who will look to put the ball in play to reach base any way he can. Masterson is pretty slow to the plate, and allowed a 77% success rate (34 for 44) on SB attempts over the last two seasons. That's where Gordon's upside can be found, but he should be able to produce modest DK point totals regardless of his base-stealing prowess.

Potential Value:

Mookie Betts (BOS) was just another victim of Jake Arrieta's mastery last night, but he's a great punt play tonight at $2300 as the Red Sox should be able to turn their lineup over against RHP Edwin Jackson.



Outfielders:

Adam Jones (BAL) vs. TEX: $5100 – Facing RHP Nick Martinez

Martinez has been worse against lefties, and worse at home in a small sample size this season, but as not as if he's been good against anyone. The rookie allowed opposing batters to post a .422 wOBA in 22 IP last month, coughing up 5 HR and walking 13 batter while striking out just 8. He may not be in the Majors for long, and probably wouldn't be in the Rangers had other options. While Jones' doesn't have the platoon advantage in this matchup, he's red-hot as he comes into tonight's action 17 for 40 (.425) over his last 10 games. He's crushing the Rangers' weak pitching staff (10 for 17 with 3 HR against Texas this season) and there's no reason to expect that to change tonight.

Bryce Harper (WAS) vs. COL: $4300 – Facing LHP Christian Friedrich

Before you rule out Harper because he's slotted lower in the order against a LHP, consider the fact that he's 11 for 23 against lefties after dramatically improving his approach this season. Friedrich is also averaging just 5 IP through two MLB starts, so half of Harper's at bats could come against some of Colorado's lackluster relievers. In any case, the Nationals young stud has been smashing the ball during a rehab assignment, and didn't miss a beat in his return to the Majors as he reached base twice and produced 9 DK points last night. He's a dual threat that has tons of upside, and is under priced as he comes back from a lengthy DL stint.

Kole Calhoun (LAA) @ CWS: $4000 – Facing RHP Scott Carroll

Calhoun and the Angels never got a crack at Hector Noesi last night as the game was rained out, but he should be in the lineup for the both parts of today's Doubleheader and gets a fantastic matchup in the night game. Scott Carroll is back in the White Sox rotation and was promptly shelled by the Blue Jays last Wednesday, especially their lefties, as Jose Reyes, Melky Cabrera, and Adam Lind jumped all over the RHP and finished 8 for 13 atop Toronto's lineup. Left-handers currently have a .399 wOBA against Carroll, and that number increases to a .423 wOBA at home. As mentioned yesterday, Calhoun has been on fire over the last couple weeks and has 91 DK points over his last 6 starts. At 4K, he's a fantastic play against a righty that should struggle against the Angels.



Potential Values:

Allen Craig (STL) has slowed down lately, but he has the type of approach that could be successful against Tim Lincecum tonight and is a relative value at $3800.

Kevin Kiermaier is raking for the Rays and has homered in 3 straight games. I don't think he makes it 4 against RHP Hiroki Kuroda, but he should reach base a couple times and is a great value at $3100.

Chris Parmelee (MIN) is a good punt play at $2800. He's a contact hitter that's facing James Shields, who isn't afraid to pitch to contact and is allowing LHB to hit .294 this season.


I will answer any lineup questions on Twitter: @nweitzer7

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