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MLB DFS Slate Breakdown (9/3/21)

Welcome to the MLB DFS Slate Breakdown! In this article, I’ll offer my favorite cash and GPP plays to go along with the top stacks on our slate. You can find all of our Core Plays throughout MLB Premium Package, or you can click here to join our free Discord!

 

Vegas Overview – Below is an excerpt from our sister site, Bet Karma. It has daily player props, live trends (below), and much more! Access all odds, trends, and line movement for all sports here: BetKarma Live MLB Trends

Projections will be updated throughout the day. You can stay up to date on all of our latest projections by utilizing our FREE projections portal at DFS Karma.

NOTE: Tables are embedded in the breakdown and update LIVE. The various tables will update with starting lineups confirmation, when projections are edited in the projections portal(s), and every hour. If a table is showing an error message or is blank, please wait a moment and refresh the page and it should re-populate correctly. Thanks!

Pitching

MLB DK Pitcher Table

Shohei Ohtani

As you can see on the MLB Pitchers Chart below, Ohtani continues to be the most underpriced pitcher on DraftKings. He’s found plenty of success, recording a 3.00 ERA with a 3.57 xFIP and a 29.9% strikeout rate through 19 starts. He boasts 35+ DK point upside on the mound, and he gets an interesting matchup against the Texas Rangers. The Rangers own a .346 team wOBA and a 20.7% strikeout rate over the last 14 days. With that being said, they aren’t an offense I’m going to shy away from, especially with the elite arms on this slate all getting bad matchups. Ohtani’s a -206 favorite in a game set at 8 runs, and he’s an elite option in all leagues.

Freddy Peralta

Peralta’s in an interesting spot. He’s coming off of a short stint on the IL, and there are rumors that the Milwaukee Brewers are trying to limit his innings. There are other rumors that the stint on the IL was specifically to limit his innings. Regardless, he boasts a 2.45 ERA with a 3.66 xFIP and a slate-high 34% strikeout rate 23 games (22 starts). Peralta’s been a consistent option with tremendous upside throughout the season. He gets a matchup against the St. Louis Cardinals, who’ve recorded a .337 team wOBA and a 20.6% strikeout rate over the last 14 days. Peralta’s looked elite against right-handed batters in 2021, and this is an outstanding matchup for him. He’s a -165 favorite in a game set at 7.5 runs, and if he’s throwing full innings, he’s an elite option in all leagues.

Michael Wacha

If you need to save salary at pitcher, Wacha makes an interesting option. He’s due for positive regression, as his 5.70 ERA sits well above his 4.08 ERA. He also owns a 21.8% strikeout rate through 23 games (18 starts). Wacha gets a great matchup against a struggling Minnesota Twins offense. Over the last 14 days, they own a .285 team wOBA with a 25.2% strikeout rate. Wacha certainly isn’t an elite pitcher, but he does come with upside in this matchup. He’s a cheap option, who’s a -172 favorite in a game set at 9 runs. He’s arguably the best salary relief pitcher on this slate.

Other GPP Targets: Nathan Eovaldi, Nestor Cortes, Kyle Gibson, Alek Manoah, Adam Wainwright

Top DraftKings Batters

MLB Top Batters

Top FanDuel Batters

FD MLB Top Batters

 

Batters

C

Travis d’Arnaud

d’Arnaud’s seen mixed results over his last 10 games, hitting for a .205 average with a .359 slugging percentage and a .654 OPS. He owns 4 extra-base hits (1 home run) and 6 RBIs over that span. With that being said, d’Arnaud gets a great matchup against Antonio Senzatela in Coors tonight. He’s a powerful player that will benefit from the thin air in Colorado. d’Arnaud’s expected to hit fifth in the Atlanta Braves lineup, and he’s surprisingly cheap on this slate.

Tom Murphy

If you need to save money at catcher, Murphy’s an interesting option. He’s struggled a bit in recent games, posting a .172 average with 1 home run and 3 RBIs over his last 10 contests. Murphy gets a great matchup against Madison Bumgarner, and he brings .122 wOBA and .084 ISO differentials against left-handed pitching into this game. He’s tentatively expected to hit sixth in the Seattle Mariners lineup. Murphy will benefit from playing in Arizona’s hitter-friendly stadium tonight, and he’s a solid punt option on this slate.

1B

Freddie Freeman

Any time Freeman’s playing against a weak right-handed pitcher in Coors, he can be considered. He’s been struggling, recording a .220 average with a .341 slugging percentage and a .580 OPS over his last 10 games. He’s posted 3 extra-base hits (1 home run), 2 RBIs, and 1 stolen base in those contests. Freeman owns a .390 wOBA and a .222 ISO against right-handed pitching, and he gets an elite matchup against Antonio Senzatela. He’s hitting in the heart of the Atlanta Braves lineup, and Freeman is a top option on this slate.

Luke Voit

Voit continues to be underpriced on a nightly basis. He’s been playing well, hitting for a .286 average with a .524 slugging percentage and a .924 OPS over his last 10 games. He boasts 3 extra-base hits (1 home run) and 5 RBIs over that span. Voit gets a matchup against John Means, who’s struggled with home runs throughout the 2021 season. He’s been a slightly more consistent and a more powerful option against left-handed pitching throughout his career. Voit’s expected to hit sixth in the New York Yankees lineup, and he can be used in all leagues for his current price tag. 

2B

Ozzie Albies

If possible, I’ll be spending up at second base tonight. Albies is questionable, but he’s an outstanding option if he’s in the lineup. Prior to his injury, he was hitting for a .262 average with a .405 slugging percentage and a .667 OPS over his last 10 games. He recorded 4 extra-base hits (1 home run), 2 RBIs, and 1 stolen base. Albies gets the great matchup against Antonio Senzatela, which has been posted multiple times in this article already. If he’s in the lineup, he’ll be leading off, making him an elite spend-up option at this position.

Brandon Lowe

The other top play here is Lowe. He’s cooled off drastically in recent games, posting a .154 average with a .359 slugging percentage and a .573 OPS over his last 10 contests. He does own 4 extra-base hits (2 home runs) and 4 RBIs in those games. More importantly, Lowe gets a great matchup against Randy Dobnak, and he enters this game with a .387 wOBA and a .301 ISO against right-handed pitching. Lowe will lead off for the Tampa Bay Rays, and he’s an option that can be considered in all leagues on this slate.

3B

Rougned Odor

All of the top options – Austin Riley, Rafael Devers, and Jose Ramirez – can be used tonight, but I’m going to offer some salary relief options for this slate. Similar to many great plays on this slate, Odor’s been struggling, recording a .067 average with 1 home run and 1 RBI over his last 10 games. He gets an interesting matchup against John Means, as Odor boasts .049 wOBA and .045 ISO differentials against left-handed pitching this season. He’s only expected to hit eighth in the New York Yankees lineup, but he comes with plenty of upside for his price tag.

Phil Gosselin

Gosselin’s been playing well for the Los Angeles Angels, hitting for a .268 average with a .341 slugging percentage and a .660 OPS over his last 10 games. He owns 1 home run, 6 RBIs, and 2 stolen bases over that span. Gosselin gets a matchup against Glenn Otto, who threw well in his only start of the season. He’s expected to hit third in the Los Angeles lineup, and he’s a solid option for less than $3,000 on this slate.

Editor’s Note: Remember, you can sign up for all of our Core Plays here, or join our free Discord here.

SS

Wander Franco

You can consider either Trevor Story or Dansby Swanson tonight, although I prefer Franco if I’m spending up. He’s been on fire, recording a .333 average with a .538 slugging percentage and a .934 OPS over his last 10 games. He boasts 6 extra-base hits (1 home run) and 7 RBIs in those games. Franco gets a great matchup against Randy Dobnak, although he’s dealing with an injury at the moment. If he’s starting, he’s expected to hit third in the Tampa Bay Rays lineup, which projects as one of the best on the slate. He’s expensive, but Franco can be considered in all leagues.

Kyle Farmer

Farmer’s in an interesting spot tonight. He’s hitting for a .194 average with 3 extra-base hits (2 home runs) and 5 RBIs over his last 10 games. Farmer gets an initial matchup against Tyler Alexander, who’s working as the opener for the Detroit Tigers. Jose Urena is expected to work as the long reliever for them tonight. Farmer’s projected to hit fifth in the Cincinnati Reds lineup, and he’s one of very few salary relief options at shortstop that I’m interested in tonight.

OF

Atlanta Braves/Colorado Rockies

Once again, we’re in a spot where this entire game can be used. I like the Atlanta side drastically more than the Colorado side with Antonio Senzatela on the mound against Huascar Ynoa. Jorge Soler, Joc Pederson, and Adam Duvall can all be used, assuming they’re in the starting lineup. On the other side, Charlie Blackmon and Connor Joe make the best options followed by Sam Hilliard. 

Tampa Bay Rays

The Rays get a great matchup against Randy Dobnak, and they’re one of the best offenses on the slate. Their outfield is led by Randy Arozarena and Austin Meadows. I slightly prefer Meadows, although both are great options. The third significantly cheaper option is Kevin Kiermaier. He’s cheap enough to be considered in all leagues on this slate.

Nick Castellanos

Castellanos’ found plenty of success in recent games, posting a .316 average with a .658 slugging percentage and a 1.008 OPS over his last 10 contests. Over that span, he boasts 5 extra-base hits (4 home runs) and 8 RBIs. Castellanos gets a matchup against Tyler Alexander as an opener followed by Jose Urena. He’s hitting third in the Cincinnati Reds lineup, and he’s an outstanding spend-up on this slate.

Houston Astros

Houston’s in an odd spot because they won’t have a DH tonight. They get an elite matchup against Jake Arrieta, though, meaning any of their starters in the outfield can be used. Kyle Tucker and Michael Brantley are expected to be locked into the starting lineup. Both of them make outstanding options tonight. The final outfield slot will go to Yordan Alvarez or Jake Meyers tonight. Whichever trio of the four does start, they can be considered on this slate.

 

Stacks

“Team Batting Score” – A metric that quickly highlights overall team batting based on Runs Created (RC+) by team and comparing it to the average and standard deviation of all other MLB Teams
“Opp. Pitcher SP Score” – A weighted metric that evaluates today’s starting pitchers based on xFIP and Games Started (currently using partial end of 2020 data blended with the 2021 season)
“Opp. BP Score” – Similar to SP Score but weights the xFIP for the team’s bullpen

Team Batting vs. Opp. Pitch

DraftKings Team Stacks

DK MLB Stacks

FanDuel Team Stacks

FD MLB Stacks

“T2” (and T3/T4/T5) represents the Top 2 projected hitters for the team on the left (not necessarily the top 2 hitters in the batting order)

Stacking is an extremely important element to MLB DFS. In MLB, all of your players are correlated to each other. Outside of solo home runs, they need each other to succeed. If you look at the top of all of the big GPPs every night you will see stacks dominating the leaderboard.

When using our stacks chart, we want to identify teams that are projecting well but the ownership does not reflect their chance of success.

We’re back to a massive 14 games slate with several great hitting spots tonight. Below are my five favorite stacks of the slate.

DraftKings 5-Man Stack Ideas

ATL – Albies/Soler/Freeman/Riley/d’Arnaud

TB – Lowe/Cruz/Franco/Meadows/Arozarena

NYY – LeMahieu/Judge/Stanton/Gallo/Voit

CIN – India/Stephenson/Castellanos/Votto/Farmer

HOU – Altuve/Brantley/Correa/Alvarez/Tucker

DraftKings 3-Man Stack Ideas

ATL – Albies/Freeman/Riley

TB – Lowe/Franco/Meadows

NYY – Judge/Stanton/Voit

CIN – India/Stephenson/Castellanos

COL – Blackmon/Story/Cron

 

Written by Justin Bales (Follow @BalesSJustin on Twitter)

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