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DraftKings MLB DFS Strategy Advice: Saturday (8/8)

Aug 8, 2020

Justin Turner is hitting .355 lifetime against Johnny Cueto, including a HR and three doubles in 33 at bats.

We saw MLB teams like the Marlins and Phillies get back into action this past week, and that makes for a large slate of games on this Saturday.

Throughout this piece, I will reference implied team totals and winning probabilities that are generated from our consensus odds over at BettingPros.com.

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Pitcher

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Clayton Kershaw (LAD) vs. SFG $10,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Anthony DeSclafani (CIN) @ MIL $8,400 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Chris Paddack (SDP) vs. ARI $7,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Zach Plesac (CLE) @ CWS $7,700 ⭐⭐⭐ Medium

 

It was great to see Kershaw back in action on Sunday. His much-anticipated 2020 debut was worth the wait, as he tossed 5.2 scoreless innings of three-hit baseball on his way to a victory at Chase Field against the Diamondbacks. The Dodgers have the highest win probability on the slate with a 76% chance to beat the Giants.

After sitting out the first part of the year with a lingering back injury, DeSclafani was another pitcher who made his 2020 debut this past week. He was impressive in a road start against the Tigers, where he only allowed three hits in a scoreless five innings. He only threw 64 pitches in that outing, and I expect his workload to ramp up in this start against a Brewers team that is hitting just .220 and scoring less than four runs per game.

Paddack has been outstanding in 2020 thus far, with a 2-0 record and a 2.65 ERA to go along with 15 strikeouts in his three starts to date. On Opening Day, he tossed six scoreless innings against this Diamondbacks club at Petco Park. At home against the same lineup, I like his chances to deliver another performance, and the Padres have a 63% winning probability for the game.

The White Sox lead the MLB in batting average with a .273 mark as a club, but Plesac had success against this lineup in his 2020 debut. Chicago is susceptible to the strikeout, with 124 already on the young season. Plesac recorded 11 strikeouts in his eight innings of scoreless baseball against Chicago on 7/29.

C/1B

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Max Stassi (LAA) @ TEX $3,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Mitch Garver (MIN) @ KC $4,600 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Miguel Sano (MIN) @ KC $5,000 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Jake Cronenworth (SDP) vs. ARI $2,700 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 

The Angels’ plan for 2020 was to platoon catchers Max Stassi and Jason Castro. However, Stassi’s bat against both left-handed pitchers and righties this year has made it difficult for Joe Maddon to keep him out of the lineup. Stassi already has four HRs on the year, and he faces a southpaw on Saturday.

The Twins are expected to score over 5 runs as a team on Saturday. Sano has been hitting cleanup for the club that is off to a 10-4 start. Sano sported a 1.007 OPS against southpaws last year, and he will look to have success against Danny Duffy of the Royals on Saturday. In the same lineup, Garver posted a 1.170 OPS against left-handed pitchers in 2019. Both are great options in the Twins lineup.

In his rookie campaign, Cronenworth is hitting .318 with a 1.075 OPS. The lefty will look to extend his hitting streak to seven games against RHP Merrill Kelly on Saturday.

2B

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Max Muncy (LAD) vs. SFG $5,400 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Garrett Hampson (COL) @ SEA $3,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 

Muncy hits near the top of a Dodgers lineup that is always a threat to score. Bellinger has hit Cueto well in his career, and Muncy is 1 for 2 with a double against the Giants’ starter.

Primarily playing against left-handed pitchers this season, Hampson should receive the nod on Saturday against Mariners starter Nick Margevicius. The Rockies have a solid implied run total of 4.88, and Hampson has a modest .741 OPS on the young season.

3B

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Justin Turner (LAD) vs. SFG $4,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Manny Machad0 (SDP) vs. ARI $4,200 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Kyle Seager (SEA) vs. COL $4,400 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium

 

Turner has yet to hit a HR, after belting 27 a season ago. He is also hitting .355 lifetime against Johnny Cueto, including a HR and three doubles in 33 at bats against the Giants’ starter.

The Padres are off to a surprising start in 2020, and I expect them to have success on Saturday against Merrill Kelly of the Diamondbacks. The star third baseman is still looking to get going, but I think he has just as much upside as anyone at 3B, and he comes at a much cheaper price than the elite options.

The Seager brothers are each punishing opposing pitchers in the AL and NL West. The Seattle version has been a clutch hitter, racking up 14 RBIs to go along with his .899 OPS on the young season.

SS

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Trevor Story (COL) @ SEA $5,700 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
David Fletcher (LAA) @ TEX $4,700 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Jon Berti (MIA) @ NYM $4,300 ⭐⭐⭐ High

 

Though he will not be hitting at Coors Field, Story still holds plenty of upside on Saturday. The Rockies have a high implied total, and Story already has five HRs on the year.

David Fletcher has been one of the hottest hitters in baseball. He comes into Saturday’s action with a .333 average and a .939 OPS. Fletcher hits leadoff for the Angels and right-handed hitters Trout and Rendon behind him match up well against the southpaw Lance Lynn of the Rangers.

While Berti is at a disadvantage for hitting at Citi Field, the righty should benefit from facing a southpaw. He had an .883 OPS against left-handed pitchers in 2019, and he hits near the top of the lineup, giving him a good shot at four plate appearances.

OF

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Matt Kemp (COL) @ SEA $3,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Cody Bellinger (LAD) vs. SFG $4,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Nick Castellanos (CIN) @ MIL $4,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium

 

Kemp has seen a rejuvenation of his career after joining the Rockies and serving as their primary DH in 2020. Fortunately, he still carries OF eligibility as well. While he will not be playing at the hitter’s paradise of Coors Field on Saturday, his matchup is enticing. Kemp has a career .912 OPS against left-handed pitchers, and he will match up against Nick Margevicius of the Mariners on Saturday.

Bellinger has hit Cueto well in his career, and others in the Dodgers lineup have had success against the Giants’ starter as well. Bellinger will have opportunities to drive in runs and score himself in this home matchup.

Castellanos is an NL MVP candidate as he comes into Saturday’s action with a 1.212 OPS, six HRs, and 13 RBIs. He will faceoff against a left-handed pitcher after posting a 7.4% HR rate against southpaws in 2019.

Three Studs Worth Their Salary

  • Mike Trout (OF – LAA) $6,000: He hit yet another birthday HR on Friday, and he has been on a tear since returning from paternity leave.
  • Cody Bellinger (OF – LAD) $4,900: Bellinger is hitting .353 with a 1.036 OPS for his career against Giants’ starter Johnny Cueto.
  • Nelson Cruz (OF – MIN) $5,100: The ageless Cruz is off to a terrific start in 2020 and had a 14% HR rate to go along with a 1.207 OPS against lefties last season.

Three Notable Players to Fade

  • Kolby Allard (P – TEX) $7,300: Rangers are underdogs in this one, and the left-handed Allard could have trouble against the top three righty hitters for the Angels in Fletcher, Trout, and Rendon.
  • Jose Ramirez (3B – CLE) $5,500: Individually, he is having a great season. However, the Indians have been struggling to score runs as a club, limiting his upside. Especially with some great 3B options, I prefer spending elsewhere.
  • Mike Yastrzemski (OF – SFG) $5,400: I loved him last week, but his salary is starting to catch up, and now he has to face Kershaw at Dodger Stadium.

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Shane Bryant is a featured writer for FantasyPros. For more from Shane, check out his archive and follow him on Twitter @ShaneBryant31.

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