The Triple T: Tim’s Top Three
As many of you know, MLB DFS is all about stacking so it only makes sense to focus on that in this article. I will list my favorite plays within each stack to make it easier to build a lineup from the recommendations. There may be more guys on team that can be used and salary will certainly dictate that, but the guys I list are my favorites and can be mixed and matched. When we “stack”, that traditionally means that we play 3-5 guys from a particular team so that we can have exposure among multiple players throughout that lineup of the runs generated. Stacking could come in the form of a 5-3 stack (five players from one team and 3 from another), a 4-4, or even a 5-2-1 or 4-3-1.
We should note that this MLB DFS season will play MUCH different then previous seasons as Covid-19 has made for an abbreviated year which will change how starting pitchers are used, how bullpens are utilized, how lineups and substitutions are managed, as well as the virus itself possibly coming into play and forcing positive tests to quarantine. We have also had an extremely long layoff since last season and just as we build a solid data sample to work with, the “regular season” will pretty much be over! Regardless, I am just happy to have the sport back and it should be a lot of fun. Tread lightly for the first couple weeks as we see how things are shaking out!
Use these MLB plays along with your own research! Remember, this is a GPP-style article (outside of the cash cores) 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 MLB DFS matchup tool!
Any changes or edits will be marked in Red – check back before lock!
Top Three Pitchers
DraftKings Pitcher (no order):
Notes: Two very different slates tonight on each site so be aware. On DK, we have a TON of pitching to choose from and strangely, it is all very affordable. A chalk build may be Bieber/Hendricks, but I think it is also very possible to roll a double pay-up lineup with Bieber and Bauer should you choose to go that route. I favor Bauer over Giolito a littledue to Bauer’s huge 35% strikeout rate coupled with the Brewers striking out among the most to right handed pitching. One thing we need to be aware of though today is that Bauer will be going on short rest. He is a horse so I am not sure if that affects him a ton, but it is certainly worht noting and could make you feel a tad more comfortable going elsewhere or rolling that paydown with Hendricks. Maeda sports the lowest hard contact allowed on the entire slate at 21% and his 31% strikeout rate is nothing to shake a stick at either. He gets the Tigers who are striking out at a league-high clip to righties (just ahead of Bauer’s opponent, the Brewers). Maeda could actually be a little contrarian on this slate on DK as he is situated right in between the studs in Bieber/Gio/Bauer and Hendricks in the low 8’s. This could make him an interesting little tourney option on that site. On Fanduel, both Hendricks and Maeda come at MUCH higher prices but the pitching is a lot thinner there so we may be forced to pay it. On Fanduel, I think I favor Maeda over Hendricks. They’re about the same price but Maeda sports a strikeout rate 10% higher than Hendricks. Hendricks also induces a lot of soft contact as his 26% hard contact is elite and the fourth lowest mark on the slate. Fried is kind of no man’s land pricing and he has trouble cracking the 6th inning and I don’t think the Braves need to push him so I don’t think I will make it there tonight, but he is very intriguing, having not allowed a single homer this season and the second lowest hard contact on the slate.
I listed Kremer and Eovaldi as boom or bust guys but I am not sure we need to get there tonight unless running multiple lineups. Kremer has looked awesome so far to start his major league career, but does have some concerning metrics. He has a high 41% hard contact allowed and a high 47% flyball rate but the 30% strikeout rate is great and there is something to be said for holding the Yanks at bay twice in a row and the Rays once. He also does have a history of limiting the homer throughout the minors too so it isn’t like this HR prevention is nothing new but he definitely is playing with fire with those contact and flyball numbers. Eovaldi is such a roller coaster that it is hard to put a lot of money on a great performance out of him, but he has been pretty decent of late, outside of one start. He has allowed one barrel over his last three starts, an elite rate in that period.
Top MLB Team Stacks (both sites, no order)
– I am going to list my preferred player stack, but these aren’t the only guys I would use as there may be some others that offer us salary relief.
– Yankees (Judge/Stanton/LeMehieu/Urshela/Torres/Frazier) – Robbie Ray has been one of the worst pitchers in the league since the very start of the year and now gets a brutal matchup with the Yanks who sport the 7th best ISO to lefties this season. That sounds like it could be better – and it could – as they have had guys injured all season but are now fully healthy and ready to tee off on Ray. Ray has the highest barrel rate (14%) on the slate, the highest xfip on the DK slate, the highest flyball rate on the slate and has allowed a whopping 2.45 HR/9 this season. Build around the Yanks on DK and get different elsewhere if you have to.
– Minnesota (Sano/Rosario/Kepler/Donaldson) – Mize has held his own this season but his 12% barrel rate is one of the highest on the day and he sports the third highest xfip on the slate. Minnesota has been uncharacteristically bad to lefties this season but against righties, they picked up right where they left off in 2019 as they have the 4th highest ISO in the majors to them. No Cruz hurts but there is still enough firepower here to get the job done.
– Astros (Bregman/Altuve/Gurriel/Tucker/Correa) – Man, I despise playing Astros this season but it is hard not to going against Margevicius. Marge has a high 9% barrel rate and the Astros, while very disappointing this year, still have some righty bats that can expoit southpaws. Gurriel, Springer, Altuve, and Tucker all have ISOs over .280 to lefties on the road this season so the potential is there.
DraftKings Boom-or-Bust Stacks:
– Dodgers (Pollock/Taylor/Turner/Smith) – The Dodgers have been absolutly pitiful to lefties this season so I wouldn’t go here unless running a bunch but they do offer some somewhat affordable pieces like Pollock and Tayl0r and even Hernandez and that 40% hard contact to righties allowed by Manaea is something we might want to get a piece of.
– Philly (Harper/Realmuto/Gregorius/Bohm) – Fedde has been particularly bad to righties this season, allowing them a .280 ISO so I would focus on the righties in this lineup more than anything.
– TB (Lowe/Lowe/Arozarena/Wendle/Tsutsigo/Brosseau) –
Top FanDuel Stacks:
Minnesota (Sano/Rosario/Garver/Kepler/Donaldson) – Mize has held his own this season but his 12% barrel rate is one of the highest on the day and he sports the third highest xfip on the slate. Minnesota has been uncharacteristically bad to lefties this season but against righties, they picked up right where they left off in 2019 as they have the 4th highest ISO in the majors to them. No Cruz hurts but there is still enough firepower here to get the job done.
Tampa Bay (Lowe/Lowe/Tsutsugo/Brosseau/Arozarena)
Dodgers (Pollock/Turner/Taylor/Betts/Bellinger) – See above in the draftkings section, I am not entirely enthralled with them but because the FanDuel slate is so much different and has so many fewer offensive options, they are a little more in play here though I might still look elsewhere if I think they are going to be popular.
Fanduel Boom-or-Bust Stacks:
Giants (Belt/Dickerson/Solano/Crawford/Slater) – The Giants have a high implied total and should be popular but I am not is high on them as other people may be. Castellani has been a little bit better of late, allowing an average exit velocity of 87 mph over his last four starts compared to 93 mph over his first five starts. There is still plenty of reason for optimism though as he has the highest xfip on the slate and is allowing the most amount of hard contact (46%). He has also allowed five homers in 14 road innings so his struggles are not just limited to Coors Field.
Cardinals (Goldschmidt/DeJong/O’Neill/Bader/Molina) – The Cardinals have the 9th highest ISO to lefties this season and Duffy’s 5.05 xfip is the 4th highest on the slate. He allows a ton of fly balls but the problem is that he doesn’t allow a ton of hard contact (27%).
Top Three One-Off Plays
– Winker, Cin
– Semien, Oak
– K Marte, Ari
– Soto, Was
Cash Game Foundation
*Since hedging your tourneys with cash games is extremely important in these daily sports like MLB, we have decided to include a cash game (double ups, 50/50’s) section at the bottom of our MLB DFS articles this season. These guys will be my foundation for cash games. I will focus mainly on where I think ownership will be and solid floors more so than who the actual “best” play at the position will be. Some guys have very high ceilings suited best for GPP while also having low floors not ideal for cash games. It is imperative that we play ownership in cash as we just need to beat half the field in these games rather than finish first. We want to pay close attention to where the field is going so if we have a bust at high ownership it doesn’t bury us. I love tourneys because they give me a chance to take some risks, but we want to play it safe in double-ups so I use my cash games to maybe eat some chalk that I may not be particularly high on because, again, we want to play ownership in cash.
Check back later in the day by 6:00pm as we get more of an idea of lineups!
* Per request, I am going to do it a little different today and give a couple options, both a higher dollar guy and lower dollar guy at each spot.
DraftKings MLB Cash Foundation:
P: Bieber, Bauer, Hendricks
C: Barnhart, Realmuto, Contreras
1B: Belt, Voit, Rizzo
2B: Marte, Altuve
3B: Bohm, LeMehieu
SS: Torres, Gregorius, Dejong
OF: Yanks OFs, Springer, Harper, Betts
Fanduel MLB Cash Foundation:
P: Maeda, Hendricks (could see Glasnow get some too but I like him more for tourney)
1B: Belt, Goldschmidt
2B: Lowe, Solano
3B: Donaldson, Turner (Devers could be high but not a huge fan)
SS: Bogarts, DeJong, Semien
OF: Dodgers, A Dickerson, Kepler, JD Martinez, Schwarber, Happ
As always, remember to make sure these players are indeed in the lineup, that weather is okay, and keep an eye on Vegas odds. 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!