Welcome to our MLB Daily Fantasy Breakdown! Today, we have a nice slate of Sunday baseball.
The slate has many different options, and thankfully, we get some some true top-tier pitching options for the first time since the break. I expect Cueto and Scherzer to dominate ownership, but there is still enough value to build some nice teams around them. There are also some interesting more valuable options that will really let you load up on bats. Let’s make tonight a good one, as there are a number of great contests that are being offered on FanDuel. If you don’t have an account, sign up for one here: http://wlfanduel.adsrv.eacdn.com/C.ashx?btag=a_11753b_1444c_&affid=8436&siteid=11753&adid=1444&c=
Today, we will break everything down position by position. If you like what you see, don’t hesitate to follow us on Twitter @researchandwin and let us know we helped you or yell at us for leading you down the wrong path.
With that out of the way, let’s move on to the picks:
MAX SCHERZER AND JOHNNY CUETO – This works out pretty well if you are a cash game player, because these guys both have games that start on different slates. The Pirates are clearly not a great offense at this point, and were dominated by Strasburg in his last outing, so Scherzer should have the same potential. I know we’ve seen the Padres bash Bumgarner and Samardzija, but we know they are better against lefties, and honestly, Samardzija is highly overrated because of a new pitcher-friendly home. I expect Cueto to return much better value tonight, and I think both of these guys could likely be the highest scoring options on their respective slates.
JULIO TEHERAN – If Teheran was squaring off against any other Rockies pitcher, he might be my top overall option on the day. He induces strikeouts at a nice rate, and his only true struggles should come against Charlie Blackmon and Carlos Gonzalez. Beyond that, this is a Rockies team that he should be able to dominate, but the win could be tougher than usual against Jon Gray. The last three starts for Gray have not been overwhelming, so I think there is the potential for damage to be done. Overall, I think at the price Teheran moves himself near the top of my lists in tournaments, but I don’t think I can risk the play in cash games.
DYLAN BUNDY – When I saw he was starting, I immediately got excited. Then, I got unexcited. Bundy was one of the most highly touted prospects in all of baseball that just hasn’t happened yet. He’s been around the 20% strikeout mark on the year, but gets the team that strikes out the second most in baseball against righties in the Rays. His play from June on has been remarkable, knocking out 22 batters in 17 innings, but that is obviously a small sample size. Vegas has him as a slight favorite, and honestly, it looks like you could probably do a lot worse for the price. If he is able to go 6 innings, provide 6 strikeouts, give up two runs, but get the win, that’s over 40 points. At the price, I’m going to be happy with anything hovering around 30.
WILSON RAMOS – Ramos is my top choice at the catcher position today, but he surely comes at a high price that I am not willing to pay in cash games. He is good, but not 4k good to pair with a top-tier pitcher. However, this makes him an excellent tournament option, as this could be a prevailing thought. Chad Kuhl should get eaten alive, with Washington’s implied total being over 5 runs. I like them to do that tonight, and Ramos should be a part of the action.
KURT SUZUKI – Suzuki is probably going to be my guy in cash games tonight. He is very, very quietly hitting well on the year, and this matchup is pretty good. The price is also pretty good considering his upside, and really, his floor. Something tells me he’s going to have a nice game today, and he makes a really nice play in both formats.
MIGUEL CABRERA – One look at his game log over the last ten games, and your jaw would probably drop. Here is one of the best players in baseball, and he has one extra base hit and two runs batted in. Is there any wonder his price is where it is at? We can talk all day about how that is absurd, but in a results driven, day-to-day skills based competition like DFS, it is absolutely not. Prices have to be reactive of trends, and Miggy is not exactly trending up. I’m not trying to be all gloom and doom. He is still hitting right-handed pitching well on the season, and even though Ventura isn’t awful against righties, this is a matchup that favors Cabrera. It is likely he will be somewhat lower owned than he should be, making him an excellent player to attack in tournaments.
CARLOS SANTANA – Santana seems to be a guy I can’t get right, but I’m going back to the well today against Kyle Gibson. I definitely favor Santana against righties, due to his power coming from that side and the fact that he should be batting first. The Indians are one of the higher scoring teams on the slate, and this game seems like a good one to target for fantasy. His price is a bit high, but his upside is right there with it.
DANIEL MURPHY – I would expect one more Nationals player to make the list [I wonder who], but Murphy makes an excellent play. Kuhl has struggled in his short time in the big leagues against left-handed bats, and Murphy has been one of the best in the game this year. I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets to knock a few across the plate, and come across a few times himself as well. He’s in a good spot today.
RAMIRO PENA – I used Pena in my cash games last night because of price and matchup, and I won out with that strategy, as I got a double and a home run. Tonight, he gets another solid matchup against Edwin Jackson. He is very cheap, and will allow you to get his teammate into your pitcher position, and still have a fair amount of money to spend elsewhere.
KYLE SEAGER – I’ve mentioned Seager the past two nights to no avail, and I almost wanted to take him out before I saw that he was erroneously priced at $2.8k. That is simply too low, and this is potentially the best matchup he’s had against Colin McHugh. He’s an easy cash game plug and play for me, and should be in consideration for your lineups today.
KRIS BRYANT – Bryant is a tournament only option for me due to price and opponent, but you cannot deny his ability even against a good pitcher like Cole Hamels. We’ve seen Hamels have some really big games on the year, and we’ve also seen him blown up. I think he’s got a good enough chance to hold this team in check, but Bryant could still have a nice game even if that is the case. One hitter does not necessarily mean that a pitcher’s outing is completely blown.
MARCUS SEMIEN– I am a fan of using Semien, Valencia and Davis today in today in tournaments against the lefty Happ. Semien has been having a huge year so far, and while it is possible his production does come back down to earth, this is still a nice matchup for him. He is priced reasonably, and he should give you a lot of room to work in your lineups.
TIM ANDERSON – Anderson has seen a slight drop-off in production, but that isn’t going to scare me away from him today. Jered Weaver has not been a good pitcher, and while this White Sox lineup can certainly strikeout a lot, as we saw yesterday, it can also put up runs. Anderson is in a good position leading off for this team and could certainly have a good outing today.
MIKE TROUT – It’s always a fun day when you look at your projection sheet and Trout and Harper and one and two in your outfield rankings. Trout disappointed yesterday, but that shouldn’t be the case today against a very bad pitcher who will not be able to contain him. His price is low for his ceiling and floor, and you should be able to fit him in your cash games pretty easily with all the value today.
BRYCE HARPER – Harper is another guy who has been pretty consistent in the disappointing department, but today should be a different story. Kuhl is not a capable MLB pitcher yet, and this Nationals team should tear him apart. I think Harper will end this series with a bang, and is worth every penny tonight.
STEPHEN PISCOTTY – This article took so long to get out because I couldn’t find Piscotty. Someone at FanDuel must be drinking on the job, as Piscotty, against a lefty mind you, is only $2.8k. He’s been hot at the plate, so you dropped his price? Okay. Expect high ownership of him in both cash games and tournaments. This feels like too much of an easy one to me.
MARK TRUMBO – Trumbo has been quiet in the first two games out of the All-Star break, but today could spell the end of that. Jake Odorizzi is not a pitcher I am going to stay away from targeting, and Trumbo is one of the best home run hitters in the game right now. I am expecting a big outing from him tonight.
SCOTT VAN SLYKE – Robbie Ray is not a horrible pitcher, so there is some risk here. The stadium and price are both nice, though, so I like Van Slyke as a punt at the outfield position. He’s only got one home run on the year, and that will change soon. Even if he doesn’t go yard, he can still nickel and dime his way into an outing that exceeds his price.