I’ll be bringing you the Saturday FanDuel MLB plays from RotoGrinders.com. Today there is an odd two-game early slate, eight-game afternoon slate, and six-game late slate. I’ll be focusing on the afternoon slate and the late slate and the afternoon slate picks will be denoted with an (A) and the late slate with an (L). There is a double header in Coors Field, so be sure to pay attention to which slate you are playing and check the lineups as they’re released.
Corey Kluber, Cleveland Indians, $10,500 (A) - It is a really tough choice between Kluber and Matt Harvey in the day slate. They are really options 1(a) and 1(b) and I would use of them to anchor your cash game lineups. I give the slight edge to Kluber for a couple of reasons. The first is that he has THIRTY strikeouts in his last two games. The second is that the win is very important on FanDuel and Harvey draws a tough matchup with AJ Burnett, and with the Mets offense, a win is not guaranteed. Kluber, on the other hand, is the biggest favorite on the afternoon slate at a huge -190, so he is in a great spot to pick up the win against the Reds, who have struggled against right-handed pitching.
Jake Arrieta, Chicago Cubs, $9,900 (L) - I typically like to avoid pitchers in hitter friendly Chase Field, but there aren’t a lot of options in the late slate and Arrieta is by far the top arm talent. Arrieta has a strong K/9 of 9.52 and will have the platoon advantage over most of the Arizona lineup as they don’t feature many lefties.
Evan Gattis, Houston Astros, $3,500 (A) - If Buster Posey gets the start in the early game, then he is definitely in play. My guess is he’ll play the late game of the double-header, so I’ll go with Evan Gattis here. Strikeouts are always a concern with Gattis, but Kyle Lobstein is not a strikeout pitcher (only 6% strikeout rate against righties so far this season) so Gattis is in a better position to make contact this afternoon. When Gattis makes contact, he has enormous power. Lobstein is allowing a .363 wOBA to righties so far this season, so I have Gattis on home run watch this afternoon.
Miguel Montero, Chicago Cubs, $2,900 (L) - I’m not writing up Buster Posey, as I’m not entirely sure which game he’ll catch in the double header. My guess is it will be the late game, which makes him a strong play against David Hale, and I would target him in whichever game he catches. If he sits the first game, then you can be confident he’ll catch the late game, even if there is no lineup available. If Posey catches the first game, or if you need salary cap room then both Miguel Montero and Yasmani Grandal make nice cheap options in the late slate. However, Grandal left the game early last night, so be sure to check his injury status. Miguel Montero is returning to hitter friendly Chase Field, where he played prior to this season, and gets a great matchup against Rubby de la Rosa. Rubby is getting crushed by lefties so far this season as he’s allowed a .398 wOBA and 2.05 HR/9.
Brandon Belt, San Francisco Giants, $3,800 (A) - Miguel Cabrera is my top hitting option in the afternoon slate, but it’s really tough to squeeze him in with a high priced arm like Kluber or Harvey. Brandon Belt is $1,300 cheaper and draws a Coors Field matchup with Jordan Lyles. Belt hit a home run last night and has crushed right-handed pitching on the road this season as he has an insane.419 batting average with a .539 wOBA. Lyles, on the other hand, has always struggled with lefties as he’s allowed a career .356 wOBA to lefties. Belt is also play on the late slate if he draws another start in the second half of the double header, which is what I would expect.
Chris Davis, Baltimore Orioles, $3,100 (L) - Chris Davis doesn’t have a hit in either of his last two games, but he hasn’t struck out and has three walks, so maybe he is starting to see the ball better. Dan Haren is a pitcher who really struggles with home runs and has allowed a .339 wOBA and 2.28 HR/9 to lefties to start the season. Davis has huge power and is in a good spot to take advantage of Haren’s home run issues.
Jason Kipnis, Cleveland Indians, $4,600 (A) - It’s a tough choice if you’re spending up at 2B between Kipnis and Altuve. I give the slight edge to Kipnis as he’s on fire right now. He has hits in eight of his last ten games with multi-hit games five of his last ten. With all eyes on Coors Field, I think the Indians make a great contrarian GPP stack as this is a very bad matchup for Anthony DeSclafani. He’s been terrific against righties in his major league career, but cannot get lefties out as he is allowing a .405 wOBA to lefties this season and .399 for his career. The Indians are loaded with lefty bats and Kipnis should take advantage of his struggles and be in for a big day atop the Indians’ lineup.
Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox, $3,000 (L) - Pedroia has uncharacteristically struggled against left-handed pitching this year, but I don’t expect those struggles to continue as he has just been too good against them for his career. He holds a career .335 batting average with a .404 wOBA against left-handed pitching in Fenway Park. CJ Wilson isn’t a guy to pick on a ton, but he can be prone to blowups and Pedroia has hit him well in his career (10/24 with a home run).
Brandon Crawford, San Francisco Giants, $3,400 (A) - Shortstop is weak, as it normally is, so I’ll head back to Coors in the afternoon slate for Brandon Crawford. He has been on fire at the plate with hits in seven straight games nine of his last ten, and has power for a shortstop as he has six home runs on the season. I do wish he was batting higher than seventh, but all of the Giants’ lefties are in a great position against Jordan Lyles this afternoon. He deserves strong consideration on the night slate as well.
Jhonny Peralta, St. Louis Cardinals, $3,200 (L) - Danny Duffy is not someone I normally like to pick on, but outside of the Coors Field shortstops (and we may not have lineups by lineup lock) I don’t like a whole lot in the late slate. Duffy has been hit fairly hard by righties this season as he’s allowing a .377 wOBA and Peralta typically hits cleanup against lefties, which is tough to find at SS. He hasn’t hit for a high average against lefties this season, but he’s shown big power with a .270 ISO and .361 wOBA.
Lonnie Chisenhall, Cleveland Indians, $2,300 (A) - Nolan Arenado is a great option in Coors Field, but Heston has been solid against righties, and you’ll need to save some salary cap somewhere in the afternoon slate. 3B looks like a good place to do that and Chisenhall makes a high upside punt in a lineup that I expect to score some runs today.
Manny Machado, Baltimore Orioles, $3,500 (L) - I love Kris Bryant as well, but if you need some salary cap space Machado is $600 cheaper and in a great spot as well. Machado has been leading off for the Orioles and has responded with hits in nine of his last ten games, and has even shown an ability to steal a few bases. He’s been a reverse splits hitter for his career and has a .289 batting average and .373 wOBA against righties this year so I prefer the righty on righty matchup with Haren, who, as previously mentioned, gives up a lot of home runs.
Afternoon: Nolan Arenado
Brandon Moss, Cleveland Indians, $3,300 (A) - As I mentioned with Kipnis, I love the Indians as an under the radar stack. Michael Brantley is a terrific play as well if you can fit him into your lineups, but he is expensive. Moss is very affordable at 3.3k, is coming off a big game and will be hitting in the heart of the Indians order. Moss has monster power against right-handed pitching as he has a .267 ISO this year and .213 last year, which are elite power numbers.
Angel Pagan, San Francisco Giants, $2,700 (A, L) - Pagan is a go to value play today in both slates if he draws the start in both. He’s very cheap at 2.7k and typically hits third against righties. He doesn’t have a lot of power but had a solid night last night in Coors and should be in line to take advantage of Jordan Lyles’ struggles against left-handed pitching.
Carlos Gonzalez & Charlie Blackmon, Colorado Rockies (A, L) - Chris Heston has been solid to start the year, but like most young righties, he is struggling to get left-handed batters out. On the season, he is allowing a .380 wOBA to lefties, which puts Carlos Gonzalez and Charlie Blackmon squarely on the radar in a great hitting environment like Coors. They are both in play for both the late slate as well as they face another righty in Yusmeiro Petit, but the problem is that there may not be lineups for the late game by the time lineups lock. I’d expect a guy like Blackmon to play both games, but with Carlos Gonzalez that is a little more up in the air.
Dexter Fowler, Chicago Cubs, $3,600 (L) - Fowler homered last night and has been very productive recently with at least 5.25 FD points in three of his last four games. He seems to be enjoying hitting atop of the Cubs potent lineup as he has scored at least one run in eight of his past ten games. He’s in a great spot tonight as he heads to hitter-friendly Chase Field to face Rubby de la Rosa, who has really struggled against lefties as he’s allowing a .359 wOBA for his career.
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