Neil previews today’s game action and shares his top DFS Plays for May 19
This game never stops being humbling. After a big day two nights ago, I went 0/8 on lineups yesterday. But while DFS is a daily game, individual nighty results do not really matter. We have to continue to trust our processes (if they work) and focus on the large data set which is how we do over the course of the season and not just on one slate. Daily fantasy is a probabilities game and we make the best decisions we can to put ourselves in the best position to win, night after night. But variance will cause bad nights for even the best DFS players, especially those who play GPP only like me.
As for today, Chris Sale stands out as the night’s best pitcher, though Strasburg and Harvey face each other tonight as well and Samardzija has a good match-up against the Padres. There are also only 2 lefties on the mound and one of them is Sale, so we can’t really break out our lefty-mashing righties today.
Here are your quick hit thoughts for today.
Batter versus Pitcher Warriors:
- Josh Donaldson vs. Ervin Santana – 5/14 with 2 homers 2 doubles and a walk
- Josh Reddick vs. Ivan Nova – 4/11 with a homer and 2 doubles
- Ryan Braun vs. Jason Hammel – 8/23 with 2 homers a double and 3 walks
- Billy Butler vs. Ivan Nova – 5/10 with a double
Stacks to Target:
- Indians LHB vs. Tim Adelman – Adelman hasn’t pitched too much in the majors and his 3.38 ERA and 13 Ks in 16 IP look decent enough. But in the minors this year he allowed a .359 OBP to lefties and his bad form against wrong-sided hitters has continued into the majors. The Indians have some lefty swingers that can mash like Jason Kipnis, Carlos Santana and Francisco Lindor. Play them all.
- Pirates LHB vs. Mike Foltyniewicz – I did not have much success picking on the Braves yesterday, but I am going back to the well. Foltyniewicz’s surface numbers look good with an ERA of 2.89, and his walks are way down which is a positive, but there are other huge red flags against him. His strand rate is sitting at an unsustainable rate of 97.6% and while his soft contact induced is up a smidge, his hard contact allowed is remaining steady at 32.8%. Most troubling is that lefties continue to murder him as they sport a .421 wOBA against Folty this year which is in line with his .412 career mark. All of this spells trouble for the Braves righty, and I am loving Gregory Polanco, John Jaso and Matt Joyce today.
Weather Factors to Target or Avoid:
- Yankees at A’s – 17 MPH wind blowing out
Pitchers of the Day:
- Chris Sale vs. Houston – Those of you who read me regularly know that I like to target big strikeout pitchers against the Astros – and Sale has led the AL in K/9 the last two seasons. His strikeouts are actually down this year, but Sale still ranks 7th in the AL in that category. The Astros are the most strikeout prone team in the majors, and Sale’s floor and ceiling are high just because of the strikeout potential. I’ll have 75% exposure today.
- Michael Wacha vs. Colorado – Most of my volume is played on DraftKings, and Michael Wacha is really cheap there today and I can’t understand why. His surface stats look ok and they should get even better as his ground ball rate has improved, but his BABIP is up which is counter-intuitive. Once those ground balls turn into outs, his ERA will lower. Moreover, he allows only a .278 wOBA at home and has a 2.08 home ERA on the season. The Rockies are a good hitting team, but much weaker on the road. I’ll pair Wacha with Sale in a bunch of lineups.
Platoon Split Hitters:
- Carlos Santana vs. Adelman – Santana is a pronounced platoon hitter, struggling against lefties this year but mashing righties with a .378 wOBA and 143 wRC+.
- Michael Saunders vs. E Santana – The Jays’ hitting woes are confounding, but Saunders is certainly not the culprit. He is hitting righties well with a .396 wOBA and 154 wRC+.
Any more questions? Hit me up on Twitter @AssemblyNeil
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