Home Run Derby: Monday, July 22nd
Calling home runs, besides great fun, often makes the difference between a wildly profitable night in DFS and missing the cash line. Throughout the 2019 MLB season, I will endeavor to find a few home runs in three salary tiers on DraftKings. Join me throughout the year and call your home runs for monthly and seasonal RotoGrinders prizes. Without further ado, let’s play Home Run Derby!
Throughout this season, I will produce the Home Run Derby for main slates on DraftKings 2-3 days per week — selecting a home run from three different pricing tiers. If you want to call your home runs, please use these tiers for your selections to be eligible for any Derby prizes. Here are the tiers.
Luxury Box – $4,500 and above
Club Seats – $3,500 – $4400
Bleachers – Below $3,500
Hitters must be selected from the DraftKings Main Slate.
Schedule this Week: Monday, Tuesday, Friday
Happy Monday, Grinders! The new week brings an unusual hefty slate. Eleven games are on tap this evening around the MLB. Hopefully, we will receive the home run barrage normally promised to us on a Friday slate. The Yankees visit the Twins while the Astros welcome “Can Give Up A” Homer Bailey. That would be a pretty cool shirsey for Homer during players’ weekend. Anyway, here are my three picks for tonight’s slate followed by a leaderboard update after a disappointing Friday night in MLB.
The statistics for each player are for the 2019 season.
Yordan Alvarez — OF – $5,100
Alvarez in 2019 – .355 ISO, 36.8 FB%, 53.9 Hard%, 92.9 MPH aEV
Bailey vs LHH – .173 ISO, 89.2 MPH aEV, 31.9 FB%, 43.5 Hard%
The upper tier is packed with options this evening — several of them Alvarez’s teammates. That said, in his extremely small sample, Alvarez displayed a penchant for hitting baseballs extremely hard. Within the confines of this article, at least, one cannot ask for much more. A 92.9 MPH average exit velocity speaks for itself. Will Alvarez strike out a couple of times? Probably. Yet, with this type of power, he is likely to send one yard when he makes contact.
Homer Bailey is well, he is Homer Bailey. His name speaks volumes about his career skill set. I will say, however, that Mr. Bailey is doing a better job of limiting fly balls this season. A move to Oakland to pitch for a competitive team will suit Homer. With all that said, yeah, I like the Astros, tonight.
Nelson Cruz — OF – $4,400
Cruz in 2019 – .278 ISO, 38.1 FB%, 58.0 Hard%, 94.2 MPH aEV
Sabathia vs RHH – .245 ISO, 86.9 MPH aEV, 41.4 FB%, 38.7 Hard%
The boomstick! Nelson Cruz is criminally underpriced in a matchup with C.C. Sabathia and the Yankees. Yes, those power statistics are true. I double-checked them a few times because I found it hard to believe that Cruz owns a 94.2 MPH aEV this season… overall! In a small sample versus lefties, Cruz boasts a ridiculous .387 ISO and 67.4 Hard%. What? Ridiculous.
C.C. is definitely a savvy veteran and for all of the flack I have given him for years — the man is steady. He provides the Yankees with innings and is still a solid rotation spot. With that said, C.C. is not an imposing force versus right-handed hitting and Cruz is “the” right-handed power option, tonight. Sorry, C.C., tonight is not your night, fella.
Curtis Granderson – OF – $3,400
Granderson in 2019 – .176 ISO, 44.9 FB%, 43.8 Hard%, 87.8 MPH aEV
Nova vs LHH – .228 ISO, 89.2 MPH aEV, 32.5 FB%, 36.4 Hard%
Did I hear someone say, “savvy veteran?” Well, I am not sure how to quantify the savvy of Curtis Granderson, but he still produces something we thirst for in this article. Fly balls. While he doesn’t crack the lineup every day, he should versus a righty in an American League park with a DH spot. Granderson is not producing at his former levels but he still carries a lofty FB% and hits the ball reasonably hard. Against Ivan Nova in U.S. Cellular Field, Granderson is in a really good spot to return to his old ways.
Ivan Nova is pretty bad. I really cannot sugar-coat his below-average ability. He cannot get strikeouts and gives up just enough hard contact to allow the occasional bomb. His home confines are not ideal for power suppression and despite a great matchup against the Marlins… no thanks. Granderson will return to the glory days and take Nova deep this evening.
Leaderboard (sortable by column)
Only 28 home runs? What the hell, MLB? Here I was anticipating a huge night for home runs given the 14 games and… nothing. Obviously, the smattering of home runs did not do the leaderboard any favors with only a few people collecting multiple home runs. DJESQUIRE, jsherman003, and yours truly all collected two home runs — mine off the bat of Daniel Vogelbach. Meanwhile, bcorbett found a home run that vaulted him to a tie for the overall second-place spot with 38 home runs. Bcorbett joins WestCrook1 in the chase for shanekern03 — currently behind by five home runs.
Bcorbett also moved into a tie with strgzer585 for the July lead with 7 home runs apiece. Gillik9486 and I are tied for second with six home runs each. I hope you feel the footsteps coming, gentlemen.
With a larger 11-game slate tonight, we could be in for some fireworks. Will the Twins and Yankees put on a show? Will Houston hit a few Homers off of Bailey? Can Arizona take advantage of a bad Orioles pitching staff? Will a new July leader emerge? Hopefully, tomorrow’s article brings a leaderboard update with my name resting atop July. Join me and leave your picks in the comments and make your charge, today. Until tomorrow, good luck, everyone.
I am happy to announce that at the end of each month I will be rewarding the highest home run total with a RotoGrinders T-shirt. Having a rough month? Don’t let up. The RotoGrinders member with the most home runs throughout the season — until the end of August — will be awarded a 3-month Combo Premium subscription to start the NFL season!
Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed the article, stick around for the rest of the MLB season. Want to compete against me? Drop your expensive, mid-tier, and cheap home run calls in the comments (DraftKings pricing). Otherwise, give me a follow on Twitter where I typically post slate-relevant statistics and embarrassing comments about professional wrestling.
Statistics for this article are obtained from FanGraphs, Baseball Reference, RotoGrinders Daily Research Console, and Baseball Savant.