Home Run Derby: Wednesday, May 15th
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: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday
Happy Wednesday, Grinders! The MLB posted 31 home runs on Tuesday night and popular picks were very successful. George Springer — albeit unconventionally — secured a home run for pickers while J.D. Martinez grabbed a home run for yours truly. Josh Bell struck twice as the East Coast was asleep to continue his run and we saw a nice bit of movement for a single slate. Tonight, temperatures are up across the board as spring might have actually sprung and we have just enough bad pitching to potentially set off some fireworks. Here are my picks for tonight followed by a leaderboard update.
Unless specified, the statistics provided for each hitter and pitcher are combined for 2018 and 2019. I will note when I switch over to exclusively using statistics for 2019.
George Springer – OF – $5,800
Springer in 18-19 – 38 HR, .210 ISO, 34.6 FB%, 37.3 Hard%, 89.4 MPH aEV
Soto vs RHH – 1 start — 4 IP, 9 HA, 2BB, 1 HR, 7 ER
Nobody should be surprised by the recent surge by George Springer and the Astros. The team is so talented from top to bottom and they seem poised for another playoff run. I shouldn’t need to support a Springer home run call against a lefty — but the numbers provide enough support anyway. If that stat-line were not enough, take a quick peek at Springer’s last 14 days in MLB — 7 HR, .460 ISO, 46.7 FB%, 51.1 Hard%. Certainly, Spring will come back to Earth soon — but the spot is too good to ignore.
Gregory Soto struggled mightily in his first start as a big-leaguer because he probably isn’t ready yet. The Tigers are so depleted that they needed his services. He likely needs some more seasoning prior to becoming a fixture in the Tigers’ rotation. Good luck tonight, young fella.
Jorge Soler – OF – $4,100
Soler in 18-19 – 19 HR, .228 ISO, 35.5 FB%, 42.0 Hard%, 90.0 MPH aEV
Minor vs RHH – .186 ISO, 87.7 MPH aEV, 44.7 FB%, 37.5 Hard%
Tonight, Soler will see a better pitcher in Mike Minor. That said, Mike Minor still doles out fly ball after fly ball despite his success this season. Soler hits baseballs pretty hard and the weather in Kansas City is extremely conducive for home runs. Sitting in this pricing tier will likely make him a popular option as the weather gets warmer unless he sees a price hike.
Niko Goodrum – 1B/OF – $3,000
Goodrum in 18-19 – 19 HR, .177 ISO, 33.0 FB%, 37.0 Hard%, 88.1 MPH aEV
Verlander vs LHH – .173 ISO, 87.0 MPH aEV, 49.0 FB%, 32.4 Hard%
Goodrum should hit leadoff again — so he should see 3-4 at-bats tonight. Further, Verlander does challenge hitters and allow plenty of fly balls even if he is pitching very well. Picking the opposing home run is pretty tricky — especially if the opponent is the Tigers. That said, Goodrum has been known to hit the ball hard enough to maybe make one of those fly balls go the distance in reasonably good weather. I hope.
Leaderboard (sortable by column)
A six-way tie manifested itself after Tuesday’s slate with a few players collecting just enough home run to get to the top. Hautalak was the only RotoGrinders member to profit off of Josh Bell and his hot streak while shanekern03 added one home run to keep pace. We still have plenty of slates in May — but assuming participation remains consistent, we might find ourselves with a very close race down the stretch.
Will I build upon my three-game hitting streak? Will George Springer stay white hot? Will the rising temperatures supply more home runs for contestants? All of these questions will be answered within Friday’s article. Until then, 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.