Welcome to the MLB DFS Bargains column, where we’ll take a close look at the best “per dollar” acquisitions for tonight’s daily fantasy slate.
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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We will focus on the main slate starting at 7:05 ET.
Jack Flaherty - SP - St. Louis (at Kansas City)
Flaherty has been extremely impressive lately, allowing just four earned runs with 49 strikeouts through 38.1 innings over his last six starts. That’s some Clayton Kershaw and Justin Verlander level production. You won’t have to pay Kershaw and Verlander level prices to acquire Flaherty, and he steps in as a convincing -230 road favorite against a Kansas City team that ranks 26th in wRC+ this season.
Ryan Braun - OF - Milwaukee (vs. Minnesota)
It appeared that Minnesota LHP Martin Perez was in the midst of a bounce-back season after looking fantastic through the month of May. However, the Twins’ southpaw has floundered ever since, and he’s coming off one of his worst starts of the year (6 IP, 11 H, 6 ER) against Atlanta last Wednesday. The Brewers could get to him in hitter-friendly Miller Park tonight, and Braun makes for a comfortable mid-range candidate to jump on Perez’s .373 wOBA split to right-handed bats.
Cameron Maybin - OF - NY Yankees (vs. Baltimore)
The Yankees have destroyed Baltimore pitching this season (who hasn’t?), and that should continue this evening. Maybin got into the action in the first game of this series (solo HR), and he’s an excellent candidate to resume that form against Orioles’ LHP John Means, who has surrendered seven earned runs and 11 hits through seven innings over his last two starts. The Yankees represent the highest run-scoring projection on the slate, and Maybin is one of the few legitimate bargain choices within that.
Matt Carpenter - 3B - St. Louis (at Kansas City)
Carpenter has been pretty quiet (for fantasy purposes) ever since a foot issue put him on the injured list in mid-July. His salary has fallen into bargain territory as a result, and I’m feeling a breakout opportunity tonight against Kansas City RHP Glenn Sparkman’s .377 wOBA split to left-handed bats. The Cardinals only trail the Yankees and Rockies in terms of run-scoring projections tonight, so Carpenter makes for an interesting option either within a St. Louis stack or a la carte.
Lorenzo Cain - OF - Milwaukee (vs. Minnesota)
Cain follows the same rationale as his teammate, Braun, mentioned above. I have no faith in Minnesota LHP Perez escaping this matchup unblemished, and a Milwaukee stack seems necessary when building multiple tournament lineups. Keston Hiura, Braun, and Cain (maybe Arcia or Perez: mentioned below) are the right-handed bats to take advantage.
If you are looking for more bargain choices, head on over to the MLB GPP Pivots column for tonight’s slate. Over there, we’ll take a closer look at Brett Anderson (SP - OAK), Miguel Cabrera (1B - DET), Tommy Edman (3B - STL), Orlando Arcia (SS - MIL), and others.
Here we go with the honorable mention list. These are guys who serve as value fillers if you need a “cheapskate special” to make the rest of your lineup work:
As listed several times through this article, the Brewers could score plenty of runs against the generosity of Minnesota LHP Perez. Hernan Perez (3B - MIL) - no relation, I believe - is a minimum salary filler, assuming he cracks the lineup tonight.
Josh Rojas (2B - ARI) made an appearance in today’s MLB GPP Pivots article, but he deserves a small section in the Bargains column as well. Rojas is minimum-salary after coming off a rewarding MLB debut last night. If he’s granted another start, he makes for a strong source of salary relief in hitter-friendly Coors Field.
Albert Almora Jr. (OF - CHC) and Guillermo Heredia (OF - TB) are two cheap outfielders to help complete your lineup if you are running low on funds. Both of them are capable right-handed bats who will square off against left-handed pitchers. Almora is facing Philadelphia LHP Jason Vargas in a hitter-friendly atmosphere, while Heredia is minimum-salary with a date against the mediocrity of San Diego LHP Eric Lauer.