Welcome to MLB DFS Bargains. We’ll split the analysis into three groups: very cheap, mid-tier, and expensive. A greater emphasis will be placed on the lower end of the price scale.
Please note, these player picks were organized early in the day. For MLB contests, always check lineups and weather closer to game time. Rain, wind, or unexpected managerial decisions could open up additional sources of value. Be sure to keep an eye on the MLB Headlines and Injuries desk.
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Pay careful attention to the weather reports for tonight’s nine-game slate. New York and Philadelphia have a risk of light rain. Postponements seem unlikely but possible.
DIRT CHEAP BARGAINS
Yu Darvish – SP – Chicago Cubs (at Rockies)
I wrote about Darvish’s resurgence last Friday, noting an apparent improvement in command linked to a pitch usage shift from sliders to cutters. While nobody should be overly eager to use a visiting pitcher at Coors Field, the risks associated with Darvish appear to be fully priced in. He’s one of the cheapest arms available in the contest despite a lower-mid-tier projection. With potential for heaping totals of strikeouts, Darvish presents a volatile and risky bargain.
Gonzalez is set to make his homecoming this evening. For all intents and purposes, the right fielder looks gassed. He’s striking out at a career-worst rate while hitting way too many soft ground balls. It’s rather shocking he’s managed to accrue 137 plate appearances on a pair of contending. He’ll probably even bat fifth in a potent Cubs lineup. It’s the price, lineup role, and venue that make him attractive tonight. Gonzalez has always liked hitting in Denver.
Davis ended a nearly month-long homer drought yesterday. A core injury contributed to the power outage. For one day only, Davis is available at a steep discount. As always, he’s one of the best bets for a multi-homer game. He provides several every season. While Morton is a difficult opponent, there’s no reason to shy away from Davis at these prices.
Jimenez’s seasonal numbers reveal an overmatched rookie. Peek at some of his recent performances and there’s room for optimism. His rate of hard contact is trending upwards. As a hitter, he shares some characteristics with old White Sock Avisail Garcia. Jimenez is aggressive to counteract a swing-and-miss problem. He hits far too many ground balls. Throughout the minors, these were hard grounders and liners, leading to an elevated BABIP. Through 159 plate appearances, he’s struggled to make line drive contact. Even his recent hot streak is without liners. A matchup against cutter-heavy Sanchez carries some risk and reward. It’s not an ideal pairing for Jimenez, but there is a little extra potential for a home run.
MID-TIER MUST PLAYS
Matt Adams – 1B – Washington Nationals (at Odrisamer Despaigne)
A stack of Nationals figures to be popular tonight. They’re visiting Despaigne, a junk-balling journeyman with a career 4.94 ERA. Furthermore, Guaranteed Rate Park is power friendly. Adams is always an interesting daily fantasy target as he’s turned into a bit of an all-or-nothing play. He wallops plenty of fly balls with 20 percent of them leaving the yard. Despaigne is a ground ball pitcher which acts as an additional advantage for Adams tonight. Both hitter and pitcher have large platoon splits too.
HIGH PRICED VALUES
Chris Sale – SP – Boston Red Sox (vs Rangers)
The only drawback to using Sale this evening is a thick coating of chalk. Put simply, he’s going to be very popular. The Rangers offense is well-below average against left-handed pitchers (86 wRC+), and they’re extremely strikeout prone (26.4 percent). Meanwhile, despite never fully recovering his velocity, Sale is back in midseason form. Seven of his last nine outings have included double-digit strikeout totals. Unless you’re being intentionally contrarian, it’s fairly safe to bet on another strikeout-filled outing.