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Max Kepler
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Daily Games

MLB DFS Plays: Friday 8/7

by Brad Johnson
Updated On: August 7, 2020, 10:23 am ET

This article outlines the best daily fantasy MLB plays of the day at every position. We take a comprehensive look to uncover these core recommendations, factoring respective salaries into the analysis.

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.

HITTING STACKS

Dodgers vs Jeff Samardzija – This would be a stacking opportunity even under normal circumstances. And that’s not the case. Samardzija is dealing with at least a blister issue. He’s been utterly ineffective. The Giants bullpen is second-worst in the league with an over-5.00 ERA.

Twins at Jakob Junis – The Twins are loaded with low ball mashers. Junis likes to pound the lower quadrants of the zone. He also lacks swing-and-miss stuff and struggles to prevent home runs.

Tigers at Steven Brault – Technically, Chad Kuhl is starting. Brault is expected to provide the bulk innings. The Tigers offense matches up reasonably well against this duo and a bad Pirates bullpen. If you want a bargain stack to pair with pricey bats and arms, this is your pivot play.

PITCHER

Julio Urias – Dodgers (vs Giants) – Yahoo: $37, DK: $9800, FD: $8100

Urias is a high whiff-rate pitcher who projects to supply about a strikeout per inning against a tepid Giants offense. San Fran does have a couple bats who present a modest challenge to a left-handed pitcher, but there’s nothing terrifying to avoid here. The biggest issue with Urias is his ceiling is capped by workload constraints. Even so, he’s the highest floor pitcher available, and the likeliest to earn the win bonus. Only Bauer and Boyd project for more strikeouts.

Also Consider: Matthew Boyd, Trevor Bauer, Yusei Kikuchi (value), Aaron Civale

CATCHER

Mitch Garver – Twins (at Jakob Junis) – Yahoo: $14, DK: $4500, FD: $2400

Garver is a bargain on two of the three sites. Against a homer prone ground ball pitcher, he’s the catcher with the best chance for one or multiple home runs. That’s the full story – this is a naked play for home runs or bust.

Also Consider: Chadwick Tromp (value), Travis d’Arnaud, Sal Perez

FIRST BASE

Max Muncy – Dodgers (vs Giants) – Yahoo: $21, DK: $5300, FD: $3900

The hits aren’t falling for Muncy due to a fluky low line drive rate. That’s a good thing for tonight since it means he’s a little more affordable as part of the top stack. Only three players are more likely to deliver a home run tonight, and they’re all outfielders. This is a golden matchup for a high floor, high ceiling hitter.

Muncy is a second baseman on Yahoo! He has dual eligibility on DraftKings.

If you’re trying to save money and pivot, the Rotoworld Lineup Optimizer is enthusiastic about Jake Cronenworth. He’s one of my favorite players too.

Also Consider: Cronenworth (value), Freddie Freeman, Rowdy Tellez (value), C.J. Cron (value)

SECOND BASE

Cavan Biggio – Blue Jays (at Ryan Weber) – Yahoo: $20, DK: $4700, FD: $3500

Second base, if you’re not using Muncy there, doesn’t have any can’t-miss talent (not that there’s any such thing in DFS). Biggio offers the best combination of value, ceiling, and floor. Perhaps the most discerning hitter in the league, he’s likely to at least reach base tonight. His opponent, Weber, has peppered the lower edges of the zone throughout his career. That’s where Biggio finds his power. He’s continued to hit fly balls at an extreme rate.

One issue with this matchup is Fenway Park. Unless he snipes Pesky’s Pole, it’s a difficult venue for left-handed power outcomes. Since Biggio is so invested in fly ball contact, you can only really expect walks, homers, or doubles from him.

Also Consider: Muncy, Whit Merrifield, Ketel Marte, Jason Kipnis (value)

THIRD BASE

Anthony Rendon – Angels (at Jordan Lyles) – Yahoo: $19, DK: $5400, FD: $4000

Like quite a few hitters with 40-some plate appearances to his name, Rendon appears to be snakebit. Everything looks more or less normal – his swinging strike, plate discipline, and contact profiles are typical for him. Where he’s struggled is purely with balls in play (.150 BABIP) due to a temporarily low line drive rate. Both I and the Rotoworld Player Projections expect a course correction tonight. He’s easily the best third baseman on the docket.

His opponent, Lyles, requires sharp command to succeed. Through two appearances, he’s walked a batter per inning. The Angels - and Rendon – should feast. The Rangers bullpen is soft too.

Also Consider: Rafael Devers, Jose Ramirez, Justin Turner, Travis Shaw (value)

SHORTSTOP

Dansby Swanson – Braves (at Vince Velasquez) – Yahoo: $17, DK: $4400, FD: $3300

I prefer Corey Seager, but there are only so many ways to say the Giants pitchers are bad. Taking a peek at Swanson gives us a chance to recognize another potentially under-the-radar stacking opportunity. Swanson is off to an odd start – he’s making a ton of hard contact, but he’s neither walking (3.5 percent) nor avoiding strikeouts (36.8 percent). With Ozzie Albies sidelined, he’s taken over as the second hitter in a potent lineup. These are friendly prices for an even friendlier matchup against an inconsistent starting pitcher and one of the worst bullpens in the league.

Also Consider: Seager, Fernando Tatis, Chris Taylor (value), Jorge Polanco (value), Didi Gregorius

OUTFIELD

Christian Yelich (vs Trevor Bauer) – Yahoo: $16, DK: $4800, FD: $3800

Between his slump and a tough matchup, Yelich is going to be low-rostered tonight. This is the perfect opportunity for a pivot play. Bauer is not immune to coughing up home runs or the occasional clunker for that matter. Yelich, meanwhile, should still be expected to rebound at least most of the way from this slow start. Bauer has been living up in the zone with a high spin rate fastball. Combined with Yelich’s ground ball tendencies, a no doubt home run is a plausible outcome.

Max Kepler – Twins (at Jakob Junis) – Yahoo: $18, DK: $4300, FD: $3700

This is a carbon copy* of the Mitch Garver recommendation except Kepler also has the platoon advantage and isn’t dealing with any pesky slumps. Among the many outfielders with favorable circumstances for a home run tonight, Kepler is my favorite target for multiple deep flies.

*does anybody know what a carbon copy is anymore?

Also Consider: Mike Trout, Cody Bellinger, Ronald Acuna, Bryce Harper, Nelson Cruz, Ben Gamel (value), Chris Taylor

Brad Johnson

You can read more from Brad Johnson on Rotoworld, FanGraphs, and RotoFanatic. Find him on Patreon and Twitter @BaseballATeam.