Paul previews today’s game action and shares his top Draft Kings plays for August 22nd.
Today we have 15 games on the MLB schedule starting at 1:05 pm. As always, be sure to check your lineup for any last-minute scratch, and keep an eye on the weather report before game time as there may be issues with the following game: Kansas City at Boston. Good luck!
The biggest stories of the year have to include the Blue Jays, Astros, Royals, Pirates and the two teams that I am stacking today: Cubs and Mets. Both clubs are facing weak opposing pitchers, one at home and the other in Colorado. I’m sure the Mets hitters will get a lot of attention, but I’m just as confident in the Cubs offense today. I saved some money on my starters and and hoping the big bats come out to play. If you want to play Greinke today, I mention an extremely cheap arm you could target with him below. I’ve hidden a couple of my big bats but will post my full lineup during the day. Currently I have $900 left over which I admit to HATING with a passion, but it is what it is. Hopefully I’ll have more money banked as well when the day ends.
1. Carlos Martinez, SP, St. Louis Cardinals ($9,200) I was tempted to go with Greinke today, but I’m going to save myself $2,500 and STILL go with one of baseball’s premiere RHP. Martinez is 12-5 with a 2.59 ERA and a 24.2% K rate for the year. He is better on the road, and today he faces the Padres at Petco. The Padres are the 5th worst team against RHP with a .298 wOBA and a 21.6% K rate. They’ve been better of late, but are still just the 19th best club since the All-Star break, hitting only .254 as a team. Martinez last faced the Padres on July 4, throwing 6.2 innings and allowing just 1 run while striking out 5 batters. Vegas has the Cards as -130 favorites with just 6.5 runs as the over/under making Carlos Martinez a great arm to target.
2. Carlos Rodon, SP, Chicago White Sox ($7,100) Rodon goes up against the Mariners in Safeco today, coming off two stellar outings in a row where he struck out 16 batters in 15 innings. The Mariners are lousy at home, but then again the White Sox are no better on the road. Fortunately, Rodon is, with a 3.62 ERA away from U.S. Cellular and a 5.22 ERA at home. The Mariners have the 3rd highest K rate at home this year which should give Rodon plenty of opportunity to score some good points today on Draft Kings. Vegas has the Sox as -105 underdogs today with 7.5 runs as the game score. It’s not ideal, but for the price I think it’s a decent risk. His opponent Vidal Nuno ($4,200) would make for a sneaky play as well.
3. Kyle Schwarber, C, Chicago Cubs ($5,100) You could have penciled Schwarber into any of my lineups over the past month and you’d have been right. As his price now hits [appropriately] that of an elite level hitter, it becomes more of a budget exercise. Today he faces Atlanta RHP Williams Perez and his 5.12 xFIP. Perez allows left-handed hitters to bat .283/.373/.449 against him, while Schwarber has a 1.111 OPS against RHP. Since the All-Star break, Schwarber has greatly improved his BB/K rate from 0.12 to 0.58 to go with his 1.005 OPS. I also like d’Arnaud today, but I’m sticking with the young Cubs phenom.
4. Chris Coghlan, 2B, Chicago Cubs ($3,600) Coghlan is another Cubs LHH who destroys RHP, with a line of .270/.351/.484. He’s slugging .556 in the 2nd half and finds himself in the 3-hole against RHP , sandwiched between Schwarber and the man who may be filling my first base slot today. Before last night, Coghlan has 3 home runs and a triple in his past 3 games started as well as a triple in one that he didn’t start. I’m riding the hot hand in the prime lineup spot.
5. Juan Lagares, OF, New York Mets ($4,000) Lagares leads off against LHP Chris Rusin in Colorado today, hitting .300/.357/.444 against LHP for the season. He’s also hitting .355 for the month of August with nearly a 1.000 OPS. Lagares faced off against Rusin once already this year and went 2-3 with a double. Vegas is calling this the highest scoring game of the day with 11 runs scored; for this price, I have a hard time ignoring the Mets lead-off hitter.
6. Marcell Ozuna, OF, Miami Marlins ($3,200) Ozuna is really a wild card play today, but I didn’t feel like showing my top outfield bat just yet. Ozuna has hit 2 home runs over the past 3 days and even chipped in a stolen base. Today he goes up against Aaron Harang of the Phillies who has had 1 respectable start since May. Ozuna is also 6-15 lifetime against him with a double and 2 home runs, making this an easy choice at this bargain price.
7. Wilmer Flores, SS, New York Mets ($3,500) Like Lagares, Flores hits LHP much better than RHP, with a .293/.341/.512 line for the season. He’s also hitting well in August (.761 OPS) after hitting .299 in July. He went 2-3 with a double against Rusin when these teams met up a week and a half ago. Like the rest of the Mets batters that I targeted, Flores has a great price today for a game in Colorado.
For my complete lineup, follow me on twitter @fantasyassembly
Need more DFS picks, Waiver wire suggestions, prospect news and general fantasy baseball goodness, head on over to Fantasy Rundown.