faces the White Sox tonight in Chicago as the third most expensive pitcher on DraftKings, the second most expensive pitcher on FanDuel and the second most expensive pitcher on Yahoo!. When compared to the other pitchers on the slate that offer similar upside, I prefer him on DraftKings, then FanDuel, then Yahoo!. Corbin has been good this season, but he has taken a clear step back from last season- which is not particularly surprising given the giant leap he made last season from previous seasons. His strikeout percentage this season is 26.7 percent compared to 30.8 percent last season and his walk percentage is 8.1 percent compared to 6.0 percent last season.
As well, Corbin’s 3.83 xFIP is just over 1.2 runs higher than his 2.61 xFIP last season. His groundball percentage has dropped slightly as well, from 48.5 percent last season to 46.7 percent this season. All of that said, he is still one of the best pitchers on this slate as he has the fourth highest strikeout percentage and fourth best xFIP. He faces a White Sox team with an active roster that has the fourth highest strikeout percentage in baseball against left-handed pitching since the start of last season (25.6 percent) and has just a .291 wOBA and 82 wRC+.
dominated the Padres in his first start back from injury, striking out seven and allowing no runs over four innings. He struggled in his next start, allowing four runs (three earned) while striking out four in 4.2 innings pitched against the Blue Jays. The positive takeaway from Paxton’s most recent start is that he was able to throw 83 pitches. It is likely that we see him approach 100 tonight assuming that he is pitching well. Paxton leads the slate with a 33.2 percent strikeout percentage this season and his 23.7 percent K-BB percentage leads the slate as well.
His 29.9 percent CSW percentage ranks 33rd out of 128 starters who have thrown at least 750 pitches this season while his 34.6 percent two-strike percentage ranks fifth among such pitchers. The Mets’ active roster has a 24.6 percent strikeout percentage against left-handed pitching since last season (fifth highest in baseball) and they have a .314 wOBA and 99 wRC+. I currently have Paxton as my top projected pitcher in raw points, making him a great value as the fourth most expensive pitcher on DraftKings and FanDuel and the third most expensive pitcher on Yahoo!.
is primarily a FanDuel play as he is the fifth most expensive pitcher there compared to the most expensive pitcher on DraftKings and Yahoo!. Paddack is having an impressive rookie season, striking out 27.4 percent of hitters (third on the slate) and walking just 5.0 percent for a 22.4 percent K-BB percentage that only trails James Paxton on this slate. He ranks 26th in CSW percentage at 30.5 percent and he trails only Jacob DeGrom with a 36.6 percent two-strike percentage.
San Francisco’s active roster has the 12th highest strikeout percentage against right-handed pitching this season at 23.3 percent and they have a .290 wOBA and 81 wRC+. Paddack also gets a park boost pitching in Oracle Park instead of Petco Park. It is a favorable spot for him, but I will be getting most of my exposure on the site where he is priced the best- which is FanDuel.
is a middle of the road pitcher that is available at a mid-range price tag on two-pitchers sites in a favorable matchup against the Tigers. Junis has allowed 1.50 home runs per nine innings this season, continuing to be plagued by home runs as he has throughout his career so far. Fortunately for Junis, Detroit’s active roster has a .158 ISO against right-handed pitching this season, which is the second lowest in baseball ahead of only Miami, and they have the second highest strikeout percentage at 26.2 percent. Junis has struck out just 20.6 percent of hitters this season, but he has struck out 23.9 percent of righties and Detroit’s projected lineup has six right-handed hitters. There is always risk in rostering Junis, but this is about as favorable a spot as he will ever get.
has had mixed results so far in his rookie season. He has a healthy 24.8 percent strikeout percentage, which ranks between Kenta Maeda and Brad Peacock on this slate, but he also has walked 11.2 percent of hitters. He has allowed 1.53 home runs per nine innings as well. Like Junis, tonight’s matchup against the Orioles sets up well for Thornton. Baltimore’s active roster ranks 23rd in ISO against right-handed pitching this season at .169 and they have the fourth highest strikeout percentage at 25.0 percent.
They have been below average in terms of production with a .298 wOBA and 86 wRC+. The Orioles’ walk percentage against righties is the seventh lowest as well at just 7.6 percent, which is important since Thornton has had some control issues this season. Thornton’s 28.7 percent CSW percentage is about average, ranking 54th out of 128 starters who have thrown at least 750 pitches this season and putting him in the company of Mike Soroka, Kevin Gausman, Chris Archer and Junis.
His 30.0 percent two-strike percentage ranks 47th among those pitchers and he is tied with Charlie Morton, Robbie Ray, Tanner Roark and Michael Pineda. Thornton has allowed more expected production (and actual production) to lefties with a .353 xwOBA and .202 xISO to lefties and a .312 xwOBA and .158 xISO to righties.
His strikeout percentages are similar to hitters from both sides of the plate with a 25.5 percent strikeout percentage to lefties and a 24.1 percent strikeout percentage to righties. Baltimore’s projected lineup has five left-handed hitters, but they are not the scariest collection of hitters as Jonathan Villar, Rio Ruiz, Anthony Santander, Chance Sisco and Chris Davis all have a wOBA below .320, a wRC+ below 100 and an ISO below .150 against right-handed pitching since the start of last season. In addition, Villar has struck out 24.3 percent of the time over that span while Davis has struck out 37.3 percent and Sisco has struck out 36.0 percent.
is a volatile option tonight against the Rangers but there is no questioning his upside. Boston’s number two prospect, Hernandez has made 10 appearances (nine starts) at AA this season. He has struck out 31.4 percent of hitters in those appearances. He has a plus fastball and curveball with a middling change-up. The glaring problem is his control. He has walked 17.0 percent of hitters this season after walking 13.7 percent at High-A last season and 10.9 percent in A ball in 2017.
This man has no freaking idea where the baseball is going. Darwinzon Hernandez is the pitcher you faced as a kid who threw insanely hard but couldn’t put the ball within 5 feet of the catcher’s glove and you just hoped to make it out of the at-bat without getting hit in the head. There is no way to predict how this start is going to go. He has zero floor but a high ceiling. He is best priced on Yahoo! at $25 and FanDuel at $5,600, but he has enough upside to be considered at $6,900 on DraftKings as well. The matchup should help as Texas’s active roster has a 74 wRC+ and .287 wOBA against left-handed pitching since the start of last season with a 22.9 percent strikeout percentage. There is also a favorable pitcher’s umpire in this game in Angel Hernandez.
is making tonight’s start for the Marlins as they take on the St. Louis Cardinals. Hernandez made 32 appearances for the Marlins last season, including six starts, and struck out just 15.9 percent of hitters while walking 9.5 percent. He had never pitched above High-A before last season and he had just 9.0 innings of AA experience and 2.2 innings of AAA experience. All of his other advanced experience came in the Major Leagues. This season, he has made nine starts for AAA and thrown a total of 48.0 innings. His strikeout numbers are excellent as he has struck out 34.3 percent of hitters while walking 7.0 percent.
He also has a 15.5 percent swinging strike percentage at AAA, which is the highest of any AAA pitcher who has thrown at least 40 innings this season and the sixth highest of any AAA pitcher with at least 30 innings pitched this season. Hernandez is fully stretched out, with 102 pitches thrown in two starts this season and 91 and 93 pitches thrown in his last two starts at AAA.
While the Cardinals are a difficult matchup and we don’t know how much of Hernandez’s success at AAA will translate to MLB success, he is just $5,000 on DraftKings (where we don’t have other high-upside options for cheap because Darwinzon Hernandez is $6,900) and he is the minimum on Yahoo! as well. He is $5,700 on FanDuel, which means that you can spread out your exposure between the Hernandez-es if you are looking to maximize your hitter salaries.
Gary Sanchez– my highest projected catcher
Yan Gomes/Kurt Suzuki– plenty of upside for their price, especially Gomes
Danny Jansen– has been terrible this season but offers near minimum price tag against middle of the road pitcher
Cody Bellinger– my top projected first baseman and best combination of raw projection and value
Chris Davis– low probability play but cheap HR upside against a pitcher prone to left-handed home runs
Mike Moustakas– my top projected scorer at second base but I don’t expect to pay up here often
Brian Dozier– My top combination of raw projection and value
Kris Bryant– My highest projected third baseman
Vladimir Guerrero, Jr.– my top combination of raw projection and value
Travis Shaw– my best point per dollar value
Trea Turner– my top combination of raw projection and value
Trevor Story– my highest projected shortstop
Manny Machado– my best point per dollar value
Mookie Betts– my top combination of raw projection and value
J.D. Martinez- my second best combination of projection and value
Randal Grichuk– my top value
Top Stacks: Cubs, Nationals, Yankees