Tonight’s Main Slate looks stacked with good options for offense. We shouldn’t see pitching dominate the top of scoring tonight like it did yesterday, some of these offenses are going to connect. A few of the teams in very good spots are drawing less ownership than they should be receiving and look like excellent options across the MLB DFS landscape. Emac hit the Giants and a few other teams in Spotlight Hitters, I like the look of the San Francisco club as well, the stack tool agrees. We won’t repeat the content here of course, so hop over to that column when you finish this one.
MLB DFS Stack Slants | DraftKings + FanDuel | Sept. 5
New York Mets – 1-2-4-6-7 – Brandon Nimmo – Michael Conforto – Dominic Smith – Pete Alonso – Jeff McNeil
The Mets are taking on the Phillies and rookie Spencer Howard and they rank among the top-10 teams on the stacks board across MLB DFS sites tonight. The right-handed starter is a top prospect for Philadelphia but he’s struggled over his four starts, putting together a 5.41 xFIP and allowing five home runs in just 16.2 innings. The endurance has been an issue for Howard, he’s only completed five innings once and his velocity diminished in every inning through his last start. Howard has struck out 15 hitters in his small sample so far and gets good swing and miss rates on his breaking stuff in the Show early on, though those strikeouts represent just 18.6% of hitters he’s faced so far, good for just the 22nd percentile.
The Mets hit right-handed pitching very well and they don’t tend to strikeout very much against it. This offense should be productive today even if they don’t put many balls over the fence. As a team so far in 2020, the Mets are hitting .285/.353/.451 in the split, with a .172 ISO and a WRC+ 20% above average. The club has two solid lefty outfielders atop this lineup and they make excellent options to start off a stack.
Brandon Nimmo is getting on base at a .402 clip leading off for this team. his .210 ISO and five home runs so far this season show that he’s more than just a table-setter here, though the sluggers behind him definitely benefit, the lowest WRC+ among the Mets first five hitters is 31% above average. If Nimmo isn’t on base, it’s likely that Michael Conforto will get there instead. Conforto is hitting .326/.421/.539, coming off a season where he was down to just .257/.363/.494. The bounce-back has him at a WRC+ 64% above average and his 24 RBIs are second-most on the team. His seven home runs tie two of his teammates for second-most behind Pete Alonso’s eight.
Alonso is hitting sixth these days. The powerful first baseman exploded onto the scene with 53 home runs as a rookie in 2019 and packs a ton of power. He’s struggled with making contact this year, however, and is at just .210/.321/.406 with a .196 ISO and a WRC+ four percent below average. When Alonso finally turns the engine over on his season watch out for this offense.
The Mets offense has been bolstered by J.D. Davis and Dominic Smith. Smith has first base and outfield eligibility on DraftKings and costs just $4,400 despite his .308/.385/.625 slash and seven home runs so far this year. The 27 RBIs and WRC+ 66% above average are both team-leading. Smith has done a fantastic job with quality contact this season, he sits in the 71st percentile in hard-hit rate and the 92nd in barrels, while limiting his strikeout and whiff rates to around league-average. Davis will be the lone right-handed bat among the first five hitters for the Mets. The third baseman on DraftKings and outfielder on FanDuel has a WRC+ 31% above average and is among the more affordable options on the team. Davis’ season has been solid but somewhat unspectacular in the power department, he’s carrying just a .149 ISO despite his five home runs, he’s hit just three doubles on the season, while his 26 singles is second on the team.
The Robinson Cano renaissance continues. Cano is at .360/.393/.640 and is having his best season in years to this point in 2020. He and Jeff McNeil bring two more excellent left-handed bats to this lineup. McNeil is firmly in play for me despite occupying the seventh spot in the batting order. The hit-tool is very real here though he doesn’t drive the ball much. A stack from Alonso through McNeil ending at catcher Wilson Ramos could be a sneaky and interesting approach to a three-man on DraftKings. The stack would cost just $12,000 total and brings plenty of pop while filling out second base and catcher with good unpopular options. Something to consider. There’s not much in Amed Rosario as a wraparound, I don’t trust him to make enough good contact or get on base reliably for the top of the order, I would rather pay-up with a hitter higher up in the lineup here.
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Cincinnati Reds – 1-5 – Joey Votto – Nicholas Castellanos – Jesse Winker – Eugenio Suarez – Mike Moustakas
The Reds are in Pittsburgh to take on Trevor Williams and they look like an excellent option that is getting somewhat overlooked on both sites today. The right-handed starter doesn’t bring a ton to the mound, armed with just a 91-mph fastball and middling breaking stuff he just doesn’t sit many hitters down via the strikeout and is often unable to pitch his way out of a jam. Williams sits in just the 34th percentile in strikeout rate, 33rd in whiff rate. He has struck out just 14.5% of left-handed hitters over the course of his career, but allows more power to same-handed hitters while striking those out at a 21.5% rate.
The Reds have enough quality bats to overwhelm this starter. Joey Votto’s excellent lefty bat and killer eye lead off for the team. Votto is at just .237/.356/.430 but has a .193 ISO and a WRC+ 10% above average. His six home runs are a nice addition up top and he’s drawing just five percent ownership so far on DraftKings at just $4,100.
Votto is followed by Nicholas Castellanos whose power outburst fueled the Reds over the season’s first month. Castellanos has 11 home runs on the year coming into action on Saturday, which would be a career-high pace if he continued it over the course of a full 162-game season. His .314 ISO is around where his batting average has been in past seasons, hope that the .248 mark in that department scares away some less-than-savvy members of the MLB DFS public. Castellanos has a WRC+ 14% above average against same-handed pitching since the start of 2018 and is third on the team with 45 home runs.
Jesse Winker has become something of a more known commodity for DFS players after his scorching start to the season. The lefty outfielder is fifth on the Reds with 29 home runs against right-handed pitching since the start of 2018, despite seeing around 250 fewer plate appearances than the hitters in front of him. Winker packs a ton of power and has a .210 ISO in the split over that span, while getting on base at a .393 clip. Winker hits third in the lineup and costs $4,300 on DraftKings and just $2,900 on FanDuel. With minimal ownership, he’s a must on DraftKings, at 13.5% he’s the second-most popular hitter in the lineup on FanDuel, but I think we can still make use of him here.
Eugenio Suarez and Mike Moustakas hit from opposite sides of the plate but bring a ton of thunder with their bats. The right-handed Suarez plays third base and costs just $4,400 on DraftKings and $3,300 on FanDuel. He’s hit nine home runs this season so far and has a .246 ISO and a WRC+ just eight percent below average despite an extended slump in the BABIP department that has his average at a sub-Mendoza .192. We don’t care about Suarez hitting singles however, we want him for his ability to hit the ball over the wall. The left-handed second baseman hitting behind him has that skill as well. Moustakas costs a team-high $4,800 on DraftKings today but somehow just $2,600 on FanDuel, which is a total mis-price thta renders him the highest owned Reds player at 19%. Still, this is a bat we want against a mediocre right-handed pitcher. “Moose” has hit 49 home runs in his 908 plate appearances against right-handed pitchers since the start of 2018.
Newcomer Brian Goodwin arrived from the Angels at the trade deadline and offers another quality left-handed bat from later in this lineup. Goodwin is a known commodity and not a star by any means, but the 20 home runs in 594 plate appearances in the split since the start of 2018 are noteworthy and his WRC+ is three percent above average. I prefer Goodwin to Shogo Akiyama here. Akiyama has struggled since arriving from Japan in the offseason. The outfielder has demonstrable quality from his career in the NPB, but it hasn’t come together for him at just .200/.292/.260 with a .060 ISO and WRC+ 47% below average.
Jose Garcia and Tucker Barnhart are similarly lousy options from late in the lineup. The catcher could be a bit of an oddball play in some small subset of your Reds stacks, it’s easy enough to get over on his five percent ownership if you want to and he costs just $2,400. The .179/.267/.299 slash with just two home runs will probably keep most of the public at bay. Barnhart will be on the side of splits on which he’s hit 36 of his 41 career homers.
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