Neil previews today’s game action and shares his top Draft Kings plays for August 21st.
Today we have 15 games on the MLB schedule kicking off at 4:05 p.m. As always, make sure to check your lineup prior to game time for any last-minute scratches, and be sure to check the weather forecast which is looking iffy in the Royals/Red Sox game.
I understand hot streaks in actual baseball. A hitter can have confidence and can be seeing the ball better some days. But I don’t understand my streakiness in DFS. It was a rough month of August until a big winning day 2 days ago. All of a sudden, I turned another big profit yesterday and I am back in business for the month. But, I play the same way day after day. Why, all of a sudden am I on a hot streak?
Anyway, who am I to argue with the fantasy gods? I’ll just be thankful that my lineups have been working and hope that the trend continues tonight. Who wants to ride the hot hand?
1. Chris Sale, SP, Chicago White Sox ($13,200)
The Mariners have scored an anemic 208 runs at home which is 29th in the majors. They have also struck out the 3rd most of any team while playing in their home ballpark. I don’t need to sing the laurels of Sale, but I will anyway. He leads the Junior Circuit in K/9 at 11.898, strikeouts at 208 and FIP at 2.40. It usually takes 120 points to get in the money and I’ll pay about 1/4 of my cap for a guy that will get me 1/4 of the way to 120.
2. Jimmy Nelson, SP, Milwaukee Brewers ($8,200)
Nelson has been on fire in the 2nd half with a 1.99 ERA and 2.93 FIP. The Brewers’ righty has also struck out batters at a nice rate with a K/9 of 8.63. The Nationals have been going in the other direction with a paltry .675 OPS after the all-star break which is good for only 27th in MLB. Of the pitchers in the $8-9K range, I am loving Nelson today.
3. Josh Phegley, C, Oakland A’s ($2,800)
It is no guarantee that Phegley plays today, so make sure to check your lineups. But if he is in the A’s starting squad, play him with confidence as he owns a solid .298/.347/.489 line against left-handed pitching. On top of that, Drew Smyly has really struggled against right-handers, surrendering 6 homers against righties in only 15.1 innings of work. Phegley is a nice play at this price.
4. Derek Dietrich, 3B, Miami Marlins ($3,700)
Not many people know about Dietrich, but this dude can flat hit. He is especially potent against right-handed pitching with a line of .294/.388/.563 . Dietrich’s bat has gotten even better in the 2nd half with a .391wOBA and 151 wRC+ post all-star break. Today, he faces off against Phillies rookie Jared Eickhoff. The Marlins don’t have too scary an offense, but Dietrich is one guy to put onto your team.
5. Carlos Gonzalez, OF, Colorado Rockies ($5,400)
Carlos Gonzalez against Bartolo Colon at Coors is the most obvious pick of the day, but I’ll throw out some numbers anyway: i) Colon has a 7.71 ERA and 1.959 WHIP in his career at Coors; ii) Colon has allowed a .456 slugging percentage to lefties on the season and a .469 slugging percentage in the 2nd half; iii) At home versus righties, CarGo has hit .333/.393/.707; iv) in the 2nd half, CarGo has hit .296/.358/.750; and finally v) in his career vs. Colon, CarGo is 2/5 with a homer. I am confident about this one, though I think CarGo will be 75% owned in 50/50 games.
6. Chris Colabello, OF, Toronto Blue Jays ($3,300)
Colabello’s split stats have actually somewhat evened out, but he is still a monster against left-handed pitching. On the season, the Blue Jays’ sometimes first baseman, sometimes outfielder has a .379 wOBA and 142 wRC+ against southpaws. Hector Santiago is a nice pitcher, but Colabello’s price is still quite reasonable considering his lineup position and success against southpaws.
7. Ben Paulsen, OF, Colorado Rockies ($3,200)
Paulsen is a flat steal at this price, especially at Coors. Against right-handed pitching at home this year, Paulsen has a .306/.370/.545 line. Given Colon’s struggles at Coors (as outlined above) and Paulsen’s success in his home ballpark, this is a no-brainer. This is another pick that I expect to be popular, but that does not mean that you should be left behind.
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.