Monkey Knife Fight MLB Strategy: Monday, April 1st
Welcome to the weekly Monkey Knife Fight picks article, in which we are going to be doing all the research you need to make the best decisions possible.
If you haven’t checked out Monkey Knife Fight before, it’s a prop-based fantasy sports website with a variety of props contests you can enter. Unlike other articles here on RotoGrinders, we aren’t just giving you the research — we are giving you recommended picks. Now, let’s get to the article.
First Prop: BAL at TOR: 2/3 Rapid Fire
Randal Grichuk vs Justin Smoak (+.5): Runs + RBIs: Looking at these props, it’s important to note the volatility of each category. With runs/RBIs, they are a fairly volatile category, so the +.5 is hugely beneficial as there is always a chance that neither player ends up with one, in which case you would end up winning simply because you get the free half point. Now, with this current prop, we are getting a free half and there is a bit of a correlation. Smoak should be batting right behind Grichuk, which means that it will likely be Smoak hitting in Grichuk for an RBI. I think in all likelihood that Smoak and Grichuk end with the same amount of runs/RBIs here, so you roll with Smoak.
Trey Mancini vs Teoscar Hernandez (.+5): Total Bases: This one’s a slam dunk here. The Orioles are facing a slightly better pitcher in Reid-Foley, have a 1.3 lower run total on the day and Hernandez is getting the free .5 total bases. Any time you have all signs pointing toward one guy over the other, and that guy is getting some free bases, you roll with it. Take Hernandez and move on.
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. vs Brandon Drury (+.5): Total Bases: Neither of these batters are all that great, but both of them get a great matchup against Hess; however, Drury is betting at the top of the order while Gurriel is probably batting 5th. Drury most likely ends up with an extra AB and is getting the free half total base. Take Drury
Second Prop: HOU at TEX: 2/2 Over/Under
Drew Smyly Over/Under 4.5 Strikeouts: This one is an interesting one because Smyly didn’t pitch last year because of injury, but he has been very good this spring. Honestly, I’m buying into his skill, and while he does have a tough matchup against a strong Houston team that doesn’t strike out enough, I think he gets 5 Ks here. I know they may keep him on a short leash, but I think he ends up with 5 innings too in his first start. Take the over.
Brad Peacock Over/Under 6.5 Strikeouts: This is another spot where I’m relying a whole lot on talent. Peacock spent most of last year in the bullpen, but he’s in the starting rotation for this one and is getting a start vs. a not great Rangers lineup that will likely have Gallo in it. Looking up and down the Rangers lineup, we see a 23% K rate, and I think its likely that Peacock ends up with a whole lot of strikeouts here (including a few from Gallo). Take the over and buy into Peacock’s 30% K rate
Third Prop: BOS at OAK: 2/3 Rapid Fire
David Price vs Aaron Brooks (+2.5) Strikeouts: This one seems pretty obvious to me. We have Price going up against an Oakland team with a 24.4% projected K lineup vs. lefties, and we have a bullpen guy making his first start in a long time going up against a stacked Red Sox lineup with an 18% K rate vs. righties. Brooks likely won’t make it through the first few innings, and if he does, he may only end up with 1 or 2 Ks. This is one of the worst spots for Brooks here and he has no K upside. Take Price even, giving up 2.5.
Mookie Betts (+.5) vs J.D. Martinez Total Bases: Here, Betts and JD have close to the same projection for total bases, so I’m rolling with the guy who may end up with an extra AB and is getting a half total base. This is a clear don’t overthink spot here — Betts is the obvious play.
Khris Davis vs Andrew Benintendi (+.5) Total Runs+RBIs: Looking at Davis, he is clearly the better hitter but clearly in the worse spot. Davis draws a matchup against the much better pitcher in Price, they are playing at home, so he may not bat in the 9th, and the A’s have a lower implied run total. Benintendi on the other hand, should be batting at the top of the lineup, has the platoon split, is going against a horrible pitcher, and is getting a free .5 run/RBI. All signs point toward Benintendi here.
Good luck on your props today, and if you don’t see them up on MKF, check back later. We will try and keep these up all day (they should only change because of injury news). If any of these props do get taken down, we will try and get a new one up in this article as soon as we can.