Paul previews today’s game action and shares his top Draft Kings plays for June 16th.
Today we have a full slate of games on the MLB schedule starting at 1:45 p.m. Keep an eye on the weather forecast, as there may be issues with the following games: Minnesota at St. Louis, Atlanta at Boston, Los Angeles (NL) at Texas.
Make sure to check your lineups before game times for late scratches or further weather issues.
I had no intention of doing a write-up for just the early games today, but occasionally Draft Kings throws me a curveball. There are no all-day contests available at all, so I’m going to focus briefly on the early games and then make a few suggestions for the night match-ups. It’s funny how I’m becoming more flexible as I age, even as my body gets less so. Let’s get right to it, because now there’s a little extra to cover.
1. Vincent Velasquez, SP, Houston Astros ($5,500) Velasquez is coming off of his first major league start where he allowed no runs and three hits in 5 innings, walking 4 while striking out 5. Today he faces the Rockies, who are the 2nd best team offensively against RHP with a .333 wOBA. The good news is that the Rockies wOBA at home is .353 while on the road it ranks 22nd overall at .294. On the road they also have the worst BB/K rate at 1 to 5, striking out an incredible 25.5%. With just a 5.1% BB rate, some of Velasquez control issues should be hidden today, hopefully allowing him to go a little deeper (think 6 innings). Vegas has Houston at -165 today, making Houston and St. Louis the biggest favorites of the afternoon.
2. Michael Wacha, SP, St. Louis Cardinals ($9,200) Wacha is 8-2 with a 2.45 ERA for the year and is holding hitters to just a .200 AVG at home. Wacha was due for some ERA correction, and he had a 4.19 mark over his past 3 games against the Dodgers (twice) and Rockies (at home). What’s encouraging though is to see the strikeouts start to come back with 22 in those games over 19.1 innings. Today he gets a little breather from those tough opponents, facing the Twins who are the 3rd worst club offensively against RHP. They also strike out at a high clip of 21.1%, tied for 7th highest against right-handers. Vegas has the Cards at -180 today, and I’m playing with confidence.
3. Chris Carter, 1B, Houston Astros ($4,400) Carter and the Astros go up against LHP Chris Rusin of the Rockies at home today and I will be loading up with RHH Astros. Rusin has a tidy 3.38 ERA for the season, but has allowed RHH to hit him at a .376 wOBA for his career. He has also given up 15 HR over his 132 career innings pitched. Houston has some big RHH power-hitters, and Rusin’s very low 14.8% K rate makes them even more appealing today.
4. Carlos Correa, SS, Houston Astros ($4,300) Small sample alert: Correa has a 1.154 OPS vs LHP in 18 PA in the majors this year. He also finds himself in the 2-hole already for Houston and should be a top SS for the rest of 2015. Last night he had three more hits, combining with lead-off hitter George Springer to go 6-8 with 4 runs and 2 RBI.
5. Justin Upton, OF, San Diego Padres ($4,400) Upton has hit RHP for more power this year, but for his career he’s been better against LHP with a .918 OPS. Today he faces LHP Scott Kazmir in Petco where Upton has been unstoppable in 2015 with a .336/.388/.615 line. Kazmir also loves his home (1.27 ERA) but on the road he’s been a different pitcher with a 4.29 mark.
6. George Springer, OF, Houston Astros ($4,900) Springer should be near-universally owned in the day game contests today, and with good reason. One, he’s leading off for the Astros so should get his fair opportunity of at bats today. Two, he’s hot riding an 8-game hitting streak, and is batting nearly .400 for the month of June. And three, he’s facing a LHP today and holds a .284/.404/.500 line against them for the season. It’s often good to be contrarian, but this is not the place.
7. Mookie Betts, OF, Boston Red Sox ($4,100) Betts got 3 hits last night in his return to game action after running into the wall on Friday night. That happened right after he hit his 6th home run of the year. As rough a start as Betts has had, he’s on pace for 15 HR and 25 SB. Fortunately he’s due to see his numbers get better with some BABIP correction. When that happens (and with his recent streak it may already have started) you want to be there to cash in.
Some targets for the evening games:
- Dodgers LHH vs Chi Chi Gonzalez (5.18 xFIP, due to get blown up)
- Angels LHH vs Jeremy Hellickson (.983 OPS for LHH, 6.58 ERA in June)
- Cubs LHH vs Shaun Marcum (.998 OPS for LHH, 7 HRA in 33 IP)
- All Orioles vs Jerome Williams (he sucks indiscriminately)
- Marlins LHH vs Nathan Eovaldi (LHH kill him to a .424 wOBA)
Some targets based on BvP (no significant sample sizes today):
- Nori Aoki vs J.A. Happ (6-11 with 2x2B and 1 HR)
- Adam LaRoche vs Charlie Morton (5-7 with a HR)
- Jarod Dyson vs Matt Garza (2-5, 2x3B and a BB)
- Michael Brantley vs Jake Arrieta (4-7 with a BB)
- Prince Fielder vs Brett Anderson (2-3 with a HR and 2 BB)
- Logan Morrison vs Tim Lincecum (2-6 with 2B, 3B, 3 BB)
For my complete lineup, follow me on twitter @fantasyassembly
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