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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks for Monday, Sept. 20

Eric MacPherson



MLB DFS Picks, top stacks and pitchers for Yahoo, DraftKings & FanDuel daily fantasy baseball lineups, including the Phillies | Monday, 9/20

Monday, Sept. 20, brings split-slate action, with a three-game late-afternoon set heading into a seven-game main slate. Let’s get into the top MLB DFS picks for pitchers and stacks for Yahoo, DraftKings and FanDuel daily fantasy baseball lineups.

MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers and Top Stacks, Monday, Sept. 20

Yahoo Stack of the Day: Philadelphia Phillies vs. LHP John Means — 4.8 implied runs

Even though the Orioles’ best pitcher is taking the mound tonight, the Phillies order is still a viable stack. They are on the downward slope of their careers, but both Andrew McCutchen ($13) and Jean Segura ($18) have had sustained success against opposite-handed pitchers. There is a strong chance that catcher J.T. Realmuto ($16) will be between them in the order, as will Bryce Harper ($27), and gamers will be shying away from this lofty salary level. That will provide differentiation within this stack, and Baltimore’s bullpen is one of the worst and most overworked in the league.

Early Slate

Chicago White Sox at RHP Matt Manning — 5.6 implied runs

Detroit has been taking it easy with its young pitchers as the season winds down and the innings pile up. Tarik Skubal, Casey Mize and Matt Manning continue to take their turns in the rotation, though the Tigers have been adding in extra rest days between starts and generally not pushing their pitch counts. In his last three starts, Manning has logged 12.2 innings with a 7.11 ERA and six walks.

Chicago has a loaded lineup, and there are no real weak spots in the batting order now that only Andrew Vaughn and Adam Engel are the only missing hitters. Jose Abreu, Luis Robert, Eloy Jimenez and Yasmani Grandal are the core four to target. Secondary options abound in the back half of the order, with Gavin Sheets logging a .304 ISO and Brian Goodwin a .213 ISO against righties. Switch-hitters Yoan Moncada, Leury Garcia and Cesar Hernandez can be rotated in depending on position need and salaries.

Late Slate

Atlanta Braves at RHP Humberto Mejia— 5.6 implied runs

With the cooler weather in Phoenix, the roof will be open tonight in Chase Field. That means there will be less influence from the humidor and a slight boost to the offenses. Humberto Mejia has risen through the minors, but as he moved up in levels the strikeouts dipped while the ERA rose. With just over 70 innings in Triple-A, he still has a lot to learn, but he should get a few more turns in the rotation as the season wraps up.

Tonight look to the lefties first, with Freddie Freeman, Eddie Rosario and switch-hitter Ozzie Albies being the primary targets. Austin Riley and Adam Duvall both have tremendous power in same-handed matchups, and with Mejia profiling as an average strikeout pitcher, this duo projects well. Atlanta can be used on the main slate as a primary or secondary stack.

Spotlight Pitchers

Top MLB DFS Picks Target: LHP Nester Cortes vs. Texas Rangers — 3.1 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $40 | FanDuel $8,500 | DraftKings $8,600

Texas has a league-low 78 wRC+ against left-handed pitching, and in his last nine starts, Nestor Cortes has allowed 10 home runs, which have been offset by his 53 strikeouts and just a 2.94 ERA. While he definitely has been lucky with the home run sequencing, this is a Rangers squad that has trouble even getting runners on base, let alone hitting home runs. It is tricky to forecast which pitcher will be in line for a win, but the Yankees are nearly 3-to-1 favorites tonight.

Secondary MLB DFS Picks Target: LHP Ranger Suarez vs. Baltimore Orioles — 3.1 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $38 | FanDuel $9,000 | DraftKings $6,500

Ranger Suarez has been on a heater since moving into a starting role. Over his last five outings since being stretched out, he has logged 29 innings with 33 strikeouts while allowing just five runs and one home run. Luck has been on his side, but with a 2.06 FIP, it has not been as dramatic as one might think. Baltimore is average against lefties, but they will be losing the designated hitter tonight, which helps normalize things.

Wild Card MLB DFS Picks Target: LHP Robbie Ray at Tampa Bay Rays — 3.8 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $55 | FanDuel $11,000 | DraftKings $10,200

Tropicana Field favors pitchers, but Robbie Ray is at a salary level where he needs to have a top-end outing. Tampa Bay has a 110 wRC+ against lefties, which is a top-five mark, and they will use that ability to start a righty-heavy lineup. On the flip side, this will be the sixth time Ray has faced the Rays, and he has held them in check over 34 innings, allowing just five home runs, a 1.85 ERA, 0.71 WHIP and a miniscule .169 batting average. He also has 12.2 strikeouts per nine innings in his favor for this series. Ray cannot be dominant forever, but he certainly could post a fine fantasy score once again tonight.

Final Thoughts for the Monday, Sept. 20 MLB DFS Picks Slate

Keep an eye on the weather in the Midwest, with Cincinnati, Cleveland and Detroit all seeing potential precipitation.

Eric "EMac" MacPherson won the 2007 Fantasy Baseball grand prize (trip for two to the MLB All-Star game) in the Roto format on ESPN. He won again in 2008, this time in the H2H format. As one of the early adopters of daily fantasy sports, EMac has been providing content for baseball and basketball as well as both professional and college football since 2012 for a variety of websites including DraftKings Playbook, FanVice, RotoWorld, Daily Fantasy Bootcamp, and RotoGrinders. He is well into his third decade of fantasy sports and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. Follow him on Twitter @EMacDFS or contact EMac by emailing [email protected].

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