For those unfamiliar with my article, I will be listing my three favorite players at each position – two of my favorite higher-priced guys and my favorite “value” play, which will be denoted with a star “*”. As it relates to that value play, I am using Fanduel players priced around $3000 on that site as a gauge, but all the plays can be applied to both sites. Please note that these are NOT the only plays I like, but I can’t list everyone and truly try to narrow down the field as much as possible. Use these plays along with your own research! Remember, this is a GPP-style article so I take some more chances than others! The format for this article is not set in stone so if there is something you want to see or would like me to consider changing, please let me know. After all, this site is for YOU! Let’s dive in!
*Be sure to compare with your own research from our incredible matchup tool!
A star (*) denotes the “value” or lower tier play at each position.
* I am going to start listing the risk level next to my pitchers and stacks to give full disclosure of what we are getting into with each guy*
Sale – low risk
Morton – low risk
*Alcantara – moderate to high-risk
Boom-or-bust: Marquez – high risk
Sale – low risk
Morton – low risk
*Alcantara – moderate to high risk
Boom-or-bust – Clarke – high risk
Notes: Tonight should be pretty simple pitching-wise if you stick to the top at Chris Sale. Sale has found himself over the past month to 2 months, striking out double digit men in a whopping 7 of his last 9 starts. He doesn’t need much explanation – if this game plays, he is the clear top option and a threat for 70 FDP every time he toes the rubber. He should be relatively chalky, but that shouldn’t deter us, we can look to differentiate with our bats. Morton checks in right behind him against the Athletics in the friendly confines of the Trop. Oakland is an imposing lineup, but its one that consists mainly of righties and Morton has yet to allow a homerun to a right-handed bat this season. Morton’s statcast numbers are as good as anyones as he ranks 8th in shortest average batted ball distance and 7th in fewest barrels allowed per plate appearance. Speaking of statcast data, Sandy Alcantara sports some of the best data on the slate behind Morton. He is in the top 15 for fewest barrels allowed per plate appearance, is allowing the 5th lowest exit velocity, and the 4th lowest sweet-spot percentage of any pitcher with over 150 batted ball events. Stl ranks dead last in wOBA to righties over the past month and has a 27% K rate over the past two weeks. Sandy is much better at home where he pitches tonight and will be facing a lineup full of right-handed bats – this bodes well for Alcantara as he i allowing a miniscule .3 HR/9 to righties on the year. Originally I thought he was going to be a sneaky play, but he is actually looking to be a little more popular as the day goes along, particularly on DK as a SP2. He is listed as a moderate to high risk because he CAN get into trouble with walks – here’s hoping that doesn’t rear its ugly head. A guy you see listed above under the DK section is Taylor Clarke. Let me just say this…this is strictly as a tournament pivot off Alcantara if you are making multiple lineups and are looking to fade him in a lineup. His numbers don’t look sexy but this is a guy that hasn’t allowed more than 2 ERs in 3 of 4 starts and that one start that he did was in Coors. Taking that start in Coors out of the equation, he has pitched to a marvelous .283 wOBA, allowing just .4 HR/9 and a .360 SLG on just 31% hard contact. He is a little worse to lefties so Bruce and Harper pose a threat, but he has been pretty good to righties taking that Coors start away. He doesn’t have a great K rate but he has faced all good teams to righties that don’t K much so it’s not surprising. Philly does rank just 24th in team wOBA to righties over the past month, so if you are willing to lay your nuts on the table like we did yesterday with Bundy and fade Alcantara/Sanchez SP2 chalk, Clarke may be your guy. He has the possibility of getting us 6x on FD or 3x on DK but there is a huge risk here so just be aware of that.
* value: Muncy
Outfield (6 for good measure):
Other positional value below 3K FD: Choi, Kendrick, Adams, Dozier, JDonaldson, Frazier, Newman, Riddle, Eaton, Kiermeier, Dyson, Verdugo, Smith Jr, Joyce
Top Team Stacks (both sites) :
*Note: I am leaving Coors off this list as everyone knows they’ll be popular. I am not as high on the Cubs side but do like the Rockies side a tad*
Tampa Bay (Choi/Meadows/Pham/Lowe/Y Diaz) – low risk – The Athletics are rolling something called a “Tanner Anderson” who is a 26 year old minor leaguer – and a terrible one, at that. This guy is allowing over 2 HR/9 in the minors and should have his hands full against a power-packed lineup in the Rays. This should be one of the top non-Coors stacks of the night here, but I think we just have to eat it given the spot and the ownership. Our hope is that the field gravitates toward a Coors game that I think will be lower scoring. My only concern with this one is how long of a leash they give this guy, I am not expecting it to be a long one.
Nationals (Rendon/Turner/Kendrick/Eaton/Soto) – Adams for value – moderate risk – The Nats haven’t been the greatest to right-handed pitching lately, but one cure for that is someone name Odrisamer Despaigne. Stacking against Despaigne is a little risky because he is predominantly a groundball pitcher, but he is allowing high HR/FB rates and just because he isn’t allowing a ton of flyballs doesn’t mean he is any good. This is a mediocre Triple A pitcher, at best, and the Nats should have little trouble disposing of him.
Arizona LH (Peralta/Escobar/Dyson/Marte) – moderate risk – You can add A Jones if you want a full stack but I am prioritizing the lefties. Jerad Eickhoff started thhe year pretty strong, but as I stated in a Triple T a couple weeks ago, it was more because he hadn’t faced a ton of high-quality lefties than it had to do with him being an actual good pitcher. Look at his stats to lefties on our matchup tool – they’re atrocious. He is allowing a whopping 52% hard contact on a 62% flyball rate, 2.65 HR/9 and a slugging percentage approaching .600 to them. That’s not a good recipe for success in a warm Citizens Bank Park bandbox. I am expecting them to come in relatively low-owned as well which is nice for our tourneys.
Boom-or-Bust Under The Radar Stacks (high risk, should be reserved only for tourneys):
Dodgers (Turner/Muncy/Bellinger) – Kike for value – moderate risk – Canning isn’t a complete gas can but the Dodgers are among the best teams to righties in the league and this is a situation where we can get them a lot lower owned than most nights. Even if people are playing them, they will largely ignore Justin Turner who has actually been one of the best on the team to righties over the past month, sporting a wOBA to them over .400 while Canning displays some reverse splits.
Red Sox (JD Martinez/Bogaerts/Betts) – high risk – *only if JD Martinez is in* – Okay, this one is a tad more about leverage as I am seeing some Minor talk out there. Minor is actually a little worse on the road than he is at home if you can believe that and tonight he gets the Sox at Fenway. The Sox have been pretty bad to lefties this season, but they are improving a bit over the last month where they sport a team ISO to southpaws over .200. Minor is allowing a very high 52% pull rate to righties this season and tonight he will have that short left-field Green Monster to contend with. Xander Bogaerts is mashing lefties this year and has a huge 52% pull rate against lefties of his own and also has been crushing the slider this year, Minor’s secondary pitch. If JD Martinez is ruled out, you can take this one off the board.
Pit (Bell/Polanco/Dickerson) – high risk
As always, remember to make sure these players are indeed in the lineup and that weather is okay. Don’t forget that baseball is by far the highest variance sport but by truly digging in to the numbers and turning over every stone, we can mitigate that variance. Please follow Top Flight Fantasy Sports on Twitter and Facebook if you haven’t already and good luck!