Neil previews today’s game action and shares his top Draft Kings plays for June 26th .
Today we have 15 games on the MLB schedule starting at 7:05 p.m. Be sure to check the weather forecasts before game times as always but thus far, weather seems to be ok.
Make sure to check your lineups before game times for late scratches!
There’s this gentleman by the name of Scherzer toeing the slab tonight. You may have heard of him. Two different colored eyes. Doesn’t like allowing hits to anyone. He faces off against the Phillies today, who, for quite a long time were on pace to shatter records for offensive ineptitude (until Maikel Franco started crushing baseballs like grapes).
For my purposes, I am riding Scherzer until he fails me. In his last two starts, I have fared extremely well in tournament play. Two starts ago, I rode his 16K performance to a 9th place finish out of 4,109 and last week’s no-hitter gave me a 14th place finish out of 9,195. Hopefully it’s more of the same tonight. Let’s get on with my Friday picks:
1. Max Scherzer, SP, Washington Nationals ($14,000)
Scherzer comes with an exorbitant price tag and there are some other nice options pitching. That having been said, I am expecting 30+ points and Scherzer is well worth the price of admission. And, as I said above, I am riding my personal Scherzer wave until he fails me.
From a numbers point of view, Scherzer has faced Philadelphia 3 times this season and is 2-0 with a 1.23 ERA, 0.773 WHIP and 24 strikeouts in 22 innings. Philly has the lowest OPS versus right-handed pitching this year at .636 and that probably won’t improve with them facing the best pitcher in the National League. I think this is DraftKings’ highest price for anyone this season, but it does not deter me from taking Max.
2. Matt Shoemaker, SP, Los Angeles Angels ($7,100)
Shoemaker has some very strange numbers against Seattle this season. On the surface his 1-1 record with a 4.05 ERA is nothing to write home about. However, Shoemaker also has a 0.825 WHIP and has struck out 10.1 batters per 9 innings against Seattle this year. These strange numbers mainly come from the fact that Shoemaker has only allowed 10 hits against the Mariners this year but 5 of those hits have been homers.
In his last start against Seattle, Shoemaker went 7.1 innings allowing 4 hits, 3 ER 1BB and striking out 10. 3 of the 4 hits he allowed were solo home runs. Given Shoemaker’s high strikeout rate against Seattle and his low WHIP, I like him for a nice outing tonight.
3. Joe Mauer, 1B, Minnesota Twins ($3,900)
I think this is my first time taking Mauer this season, but this is a nice match-up for him. Mauer has a career line of .353/.405/.539 in 111 plate appearances at Miller Park. He also likes to face Brewers’ right-hander Kyle Lohse as he has mashed 2 homers in 6 plate appearances against him and holds an impressive .667/.667/1.667 career line. Good bang for the buck on Mauer today.
4. Adrian Beltre, 3B, Texas Rangers ($4,100)
Beltre has faced Mark Buehrle many times in his career and is hitting a robust .308 against the Blue Jays’ lefty. On the season, Beltre has fared much better against southpaws than righties with a wOBA of .331 and a 106 wRC+. Last, Beltre has a .505 career slugging percentage in the Rogers Center. It has been a quiet season thus far for the borderline Hall of Fame candidate, but I think he starts to get going tonight against the Blue Jays.
5. Yoenis Cespedes, OF, Detroit Tigers ($4,400)
If you follow my columns, you know that I like to use batter versus pitcher stats, but I usually only use them if the other underlying stats back them up. But sometimes, a batter versus pitcher match-up is so one-sided that regardless of anything else, I need to pick the batter. Yoenis Cespedes versus Jose Quintana is about as dominant as it gets.
In 13 career plate appearances, Cespedes has 6 extra base hits including 4 home runs against Quintana. His slash line is an almost unfathomable .667/.692/1.833 against the Chi Sox lefty. I would imagine that eventually Cespedes’ numbers against Quintana will decline (how could they not?) but until that happens, I will pick Mr. Cespedes every time he faces this White Sox lefty.
6. David DeJesus, OF, Tampa Bay Rays ($3,100)
DeJesus is always a great value play, hitting in the middle of the Rays’ order against right-handed pitching and producing quite nicely. On the season against right-handers, DeJesus is hitting a very nice .292/.353/.435. Against Rick Porcello of the Red Sox, he has been even better with a career .400/.464/.520 line. As usual, DeJesus is cheap, and picking guys like him allows me to get Scherzer into my line-up.
7. Melky Cabrera, OF, Chicago White Sox ($3,400)
The Melk-Man has been rather flaccid this season, being perhaps the most inept offensive player in the big leagues. But over the last two weeks, he has definitely improved with a .327/.358/.408 line. Moreover, he has always hit Tigers starter Anibal Sanchez well with a .519/.519/.556 slash in 27 plate appearances. Melky will be at the top of the White Sox line-up against a pitcher that he has owned and on a pretty good run. I like him at $3,400 today.
For my complete lineup, follow me on twitter @nschnurbach
Need more DFS picks, Waiver wire suggestions, prospect news and general fantasy baseball goodness, head on over to Fantasy Rundown.