The Triple T: Tim’s Top Three
Welcome back to the 2021 MLB DFS season! 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 within that team and can be mixed and matched. When we “stack”, that traditionally means that we play 3 to 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. My personal favorite is a 3/3/2 as it allows me to get exposure to three of my favorite teams on a slate.
We should note that this MLB DFS season will play a little different then previous seasons as Covid-19 has made for an abbreviated year last year which could change how starting pitchers are used THIS season, how lineups and substitutions are managed, as well as the virus still being around, leading to positive tests and causing players to quarantine. 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 and we get a solid data set to work off!
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!
Boom-or-Bust: Rodriguez, Fried
FD Boom-or-Bust: Rodriguez
Notes: Another slate with a slew of good arms to choose. Cole is at the top and doesn’t need much explanation. He can be susceptible to getting touched up but he makes up for any damage in strikeouts and has by far the highest floor on the slate. Once again, DraftKings doesn’t know how to price up their stud pitchers so they’ve made it very easy to fit him. It is a little more of a chore on FD and like with Buehler last night, I wouldn’t force it. He is clearly the top choice on both sites but on FD, I would only go there if you’re comfortable with the bats you have to put around him. If you think you can make up a homerun’s worth of points with lineup around someone other than Cole then that might be in your best interest. In cash and small single entries though, just know he will be the chalk – and with good reason. I like Duffy a lot as Detroit has been one of the worst teams in the league to southpaws this year and he shockingly has one of the highest swinging strike rates on the slate (14.4%) but his price makes a little more sense to me on DK than on FD. If I am on FD, I still like him but I just assume go cheaper in Urias or Wheeler. Duffy is in kind of “no-man’s land” price-wise on there. Wheeler is one of those cheaper options from Duffy on FD. His matchup is a little tougher but this guy has hit 58 points just as much as Cole has this season (3 in 7 starts). Wheeler’s floor is much lower than Cole’s but the upside is on par and for almost $3,000 less. Wheeler has the 5th lowest xfip on the slate while allowing one of the lowest exit velocities and flyball rates so the potential is there. Like with Wheeler, other arms are in good spots but carry a much lower floor than Cole and that is what it comes down to tonight – whether you’re willing to risk a floor game to jam in an extra bat or two. Gallen doesn’t quite have the upside that Wheeler, Woodruff, Urias and Cole have but he has one of the best matchups and offers some salary relief. Miami is rolling out an abysmal lineup on a nightly basis and we targeted them with worse pitchers the last two nights (Bumgarner and Weaver) and both guys hovered around 50 FDP so there isn’t much reason to think Gallen can’t get there as well. He has a much lower floor than the rest but also has the potential to match the big boys in point-per-dollar output at the end of the night.
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.
– White Sox (Abreu/Moncada/Mercedes/Anderson/Grandal) – Death, taxes, and the White Sox against lefties. The Sox lead the majors in wRC+ to lefties so far this season after being at the top much of last year. The fact they’re doing it without Eloy Jimenez and a lot of Luis Robert is impressive and its because guys like Mercedes have stepped right in and Abreu continues to mash. Happ has a 1.91 ERA that looks sexy but the xfip of 5.39 (3rd highest on the slate) speaks to a guy that is going to see big regression soon. Happ isn’t allowing loads of hard contact so far (28%) but his very low amount of soft contact allowed (just 10%) speaks to a guy that isn’t pitching well, he is “getting by”. I am hoping people see Happ’s ERA and avoid the Sox because they’re in one of the better spots of the slate.
– Dodgers (Seager/Muncy/Turner/Taylor/Betts) – Dunn has held his own more than I thought he would this season but there is only so long he can continue to do that while allowing huge flyball rates (highest on the slate), not making guys miss, and allowing high hard contact. Just as with Chicago and lefties, the Dodgers sport the highest wRC+ in the league to righties and in theory should have little issues disposing of Dunn and getting to that bullpen.
– Philly (Segura/Harper/Hoskins/Realmuto/Bohm) – This one is a tad hairier as Lester inexplicably hasn’t allowed much dating back to last season. He doesn’t induce whiffs but he keeps the ball down and doesn’t allow a ton of exit velocity. Philly was one of the best teams to lefties last year and they have a few guys that display a ton of power to them in Cutch, Realmuto, Bohm and even Harper with the platoon disadvantage. I understand if you want to go elsewhere because Lester does seem to “Anibal Sanchez” his way to decent starts and I was really toying with putting Arizona in this spot.
Top Boom-or-Bust Stacks
These are stacks that I anticipate will be lower owned but have huge potential. They are usually all-or-nothing stacks that we play shooting for a tourney takedown
– Arizona (Peralta/Escobar/Kelly/Cabrera) – Speaking of Arizona, Neidert is slated to start for Miami and could be the worst pitcher on the slate. He comes in with an unsightly 7.39 xfip, 37% hard contact and big flyball rate in his few appearances and then gives way to a bad bullpen. Arizona is nothing special to righties so hopefully that helps them to go under the radar as Neidert can make even the worst offenses look good.
– Twins (Cruz/Polanco/Garver/Donaldson/Garlick) – Keuchel and especially the Sox pen are not entities I usually target but these guys listed all come in with impressive numbers to lefties. We will have to see how popular it looks like they’re going to be as if they’re going to be popular, I might leave this stack on the bench and just use some pieces.
– Yankees (Stanton/Judge/Torres/LeMehieu/Voit)
Top One-Off Plays
– Abreu, Chw
– Devers, Bos
– Laureano, Oak
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.
***will make an update here at 6:00pm! ***
FD Cash Core: Cole , Muncy, Seager
Other cash plays: Wheeler, Duffy
1B: Muncy, Hoskins
2B: Muncy, Escobar
3B: Turner, Bregman
OF: Betts, Harper, Mccutchen, Soler, Judge, Taylor
DK Cash core: Cole
Other DK Cash: Woodruff Duffy
C: Smith, Perez, Knapp
1B: Hoskins, Muncy
2B: Escobar, Segura
3B: Bohm, Escobar, Cabrera
SS: Seager, Anderson, Iglesias
OF: Betts, Ward, Mccutchen, Harper, Soler, Judge, Peralta
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!