Welcome to the MLB GPP Pivots article, where we’ll be looking to uncover some sneaky-good DFS plays away from the popular lifts. These recommendations are usually risk/reward commodities meant to be used in large-field tournaments. Typically, blending these low-owned hidden gems with well-aligned staples contributes to a viable GPP strategy.
Keep in mind that the following player write-ups were constructed earlier in the day, and sometimes injury/rest situations can alter the fantasy landscape. Monitoring our MLB News & Headlines Feed throughout the day will keep you in the loop while giving you the subsequent DFS consequences of each information piece.
We will be looking at the eight-game main slate beginning at 7:05 ET.
Robert Dugger - Miami (at Pittsburgh)
Let me begin this write-up by pointing out that Dugger is an extreme risk/reward play. The good news comes from Dugger’s dirt-cheap salary and strong showing (7 IP, 3 H, 7 K) against Cincinnati last week. Now for the not so good news. Dugger got shelled for six earned runs through five innings in his other MLB start (Aug. 5 @ NYM) this season. He also holds a scary 7.59 ERA through 53.1 innings at the Triple-A level. That begs the question, is the rookie starting to figure things out, or was his recent appearance against the Reds just a mirage? We’ll find out when he faces the Pirates tonight, who rank middle-of-the-pack in most crucial hitting categories.
CATCHER / FIRST BASE
C.J. Cron - Minnesota (at Boston)
It has been a roller-coaster of a season for Cron, who has looked like a mainstay for Minnesota’s “Bomba Squad” at times but battled injuries and bouts of general inconsistencies too. However, he has been a reliable bat against left-handed pitching this season, holding a 160 wRC+ and .414 wOBA split that outranks the likes of Mike Trout, Pete Alonso, and Nolan Arenado in that regard. Boston LHP Eduardo Rodriguez is a solid hurler, but he’s far from bulletproof - especially at hitter-friendly Fenway Park. Cron and his teammates could add to their MLB record “bomba” total this evening.
Jonathan Schoop - Minnesota (at Boston)
Schoop has lost time to rookie second baseman Luis Arraez, but the veteran is still a serviceable fantasy option against left-handed pitching. Take his most recent five starts for example, as Schoop blasted four homers with seven RBIs over that span. As mentioned in the previous write-up, the hitter-friendly dimensions of Fenway Park certainly play towards the favor of Minnesota’s homer-happy club. Don’t be surprised if Schoop gets in on the action tonight.
Evan Longoria - San Francisco (at St. Louis)
Longoria has been surging over the past month, and he could keep that theme at St. Louis tonight. Cardinals’ RHP Michael Wacha looked solid in his most recent start against Cincinnati last week, but we can’t forget about his vulnerable .353 wOBA split to right-handed bats. Longoria, Mauricio Dubon (more on him in a moment), and Kevin Pillar are my favorite San Francisco bats to take advantage.
Mauricio Dubon - San Francisco (at St. Louis)
We’ll need to double-check if Dubon is in the lineup before jumping on him in tournaments. He has an interesting power/speed combination emphasized with 20 homers and 10 steals at Triple-A this season. Dubon flexed some of that with a homer earlier this series, and he’ll look to jump on Wacha’s aforementioned .353 wOBA split to right-handed bats.
Mark Canha - Oakland (vs. LA Angels)
Canha typically checks in as an underrated DFS asset, as he doesn’t have a ton of name recognition while playing for a sneaky-good Oakland offense. Canha has been known as a platoon bat against left-handed pitching throughout most of his career, and he’ll see a generous rookie southpaw in LAA hurler Patrick Sandoval tonight. I’m expecting the A’s to score some runs in this matchup, and Canha is a strong pick to extend his recent tear (.340 avg, 5 HRs, 12 runs, 10 RBIs in 13 games).
Victor Reyes - Detroit (at Kansas City)
Most people will be looking to jump all over Detroit RHP Edwin Jackson in this matchup. I can’t say that I blame them, as KC hitters like Adalberto Mondesi, Ryan O’Hearn, Jorge Soler, and Alex Gordon certainly have my attention as well. However, let’s not forget about the generosity of Kansas City RHP Jakob Junis, who owns a .340 wOBA split to left-handed bats over the past two years ... Meanwhile, Reyes is a switch-hitter batting leadoff with 13 hits, four doubles, and two stolen bases over his past four games. Definitely give him a strong look through all formats tonight.