DraftKings MLB Value Plays: Saturday (4/14)
Did the early slate rain on your DFS parade? After a messy day slate with several games either getting PPD or in danger of long delays, Saturday’s main slate on DraftKings has a tasty little 6-game serving of games without any weather concerns. It’s nice to have some west-coast sunshine to play ball. I’ll help uncover some guys in these games to get you a little more star power, or a strong starting pitcher in your lineups. Ready? Let’s go!
Garrett Richards (LAA): $7,200 @ KC
Richards is a sizeable (-165) favorite on the road against an offense that is asleep at the plate. To emphasize the lack of offense, Richards’ teammate, Mike Trout, has more HRs (5) than the entire Royals roster (4) so far this season. With just 36 runs scored, Kansas City is a cake matchup for Richards and his cheap price tag allows you to spend up at SP1 where I strongly recommend pairing him with either Rich Hill (-170) $9,700 or Jameson Taillon (-160) $12,000 to start your roster construction. He’s my favorite SP2 on the slate by a wide margin.
Matt Harvey (NYM): $6,800 vs. MIL
Yasmani Grandal (LAD): $3,600 vs. ARI
Grandal is one of my favorite catchers to play, especially if I roster a Dodgers pitcher like Hill. He’s going to make the pitchers look good as the best pitch-framer in the league, while also holding his own at both sides of the plate. He’s always displayed more power against righties with a career .211 ISO and both his 2018 HRs have come vs. RHP. The D-Back are rolling our Tijuan Walker, who has struggled against Grandal in a small sample. I also like him because he’s a switch-hitter, meaning he’ll likely stay in the game once Walker is pulled.
Jose Lobaton (NYM): $2,200 vs. MIL
Josh Bell (PIT): $3,600 @ MIA
Another switch-hitter! Bell’s price has dropped enough to make him a solid play. He hits RHP better, just like Grandal. But unlike Grandal, he hits them better on the road with a .209 ISO ISO/.352 wOBA/116 wRC+. As of 12 pm EST, the Bucs were tied with the Angles for the highest implied total of the slate at 4.3 runs. Bell will hit cleanup for a surprisingly potent Pittsburgh offense that is second in the MLB in runs scored behind the Angles, of course. While the offense could sputter at some point, the matchup versus a triple-A caliber pitcher in Trevor Richards is just too good to ignore.
Luis Valbuena (LAA): $3,300 @ KC (also 3B eligible)
Asdrubal Cabrera (NYM): $3,400 vs. MIL
Yup, another switch-hitter. Cabrera is by far the hottest of the bunch as he hasn’t gone hitless since Opening Day! He’s been absolutely raking with two more hits last night. He continually goes under-owned on DraftKings and like last year, he gets no respect with such a modest price. The Mets are red-hot and he’s a major part of the offense. His flyball rate has spiked lately, so more HRs are likely coming. I think he’s the best value on the slate.
Jed Lowrie (OAK): $3,600 @ SEA
Evan Longoria (SF): $3,200 @ SD
Longo has historically smashed southpaws and though he’s started 2018 slow, he’s making solid contact against them again this year as evidenced by the .261 ISO. His career numbers have half his games played at Tropicana Field, an extreme pitchers park, so going to Petco isn’t a big deal. His only HR has come off LHP this year and he’s due for more based on his batted ball data.
Colin Moran (PIT): $3,400 @ MIA
Marcus Semien (OAK): $3,200 @ SEA
Semien is probably the second-best value bat on the slate as a leadoff guy with excellent batted ball distances and flyball rate to start the year. His power was zapped with a wrist injury last year, and he’s played in a lot of pitcher-friendly parks so far in 2018 or else he’d likely have more dingers. The A’s are in Safeco tonight with the roof closed, providing a better hitting environment for his career .339 wOBA and 115 wRC+ vs southpaws.
Miguel Rojas (MIA): $2,900 vs. PIT
This is an idea if you’re playing Semien, Lowrie, or the Matts (Chapman or Olson) – you can roll in one or both of these guys out in a wrap-around stack or as cheap salary savers. The pair will cost a total of $5,300, unlocking a lot of cap space. I like Smolinski a little more than Thompson as he has more on-base potential, while Thompson offers a bit more power upside. If these suggestions are too gross for you, keep scrolling down.
Derek Dietrich (MIA): $2,900 vs. PIT
DD has consistently hit RHP better over his career with solid a .339 wOBA and 114 wRC+. He’s currently hovering about 20 points above those marks to start 2018. While he should eventually regress toward his career marks, the price is cheap enough to take a chance in a tough matchup. It should be noted Jameson Tallion has been elite to start the year, but has limited strikeout upside against lefty bats, with a K rate 10% lower than against righties.
Andrew McCutchen (SF): $4,200 @ SD
A bit of a reach as a “value” at $4.2k, and much like his teammate above, Cutch has scuffled to start 2018. However, like Longo, he has a lengthy career track record of success against southpaws which suggests some progress is coming. There are reasons he’s still a higher-priced mid-range option worth considering in a pitchers park, mostly his staggering .242 ISO, .410 wOBA AND 162 wRC+ for his career. I’m taking a chance on him.
Josh Dalley is a DFS correspondent at FantasyPros. For more from Josh, follow him on Twitter @JoshDalley72.