The Elite Plays *Pitching Only* (DK MLB 09/08/2017)

Slate Overview

This is a bit of a weird slate because I actually find the mid/lower tier a bit more lucrative than the high priced pitching today, so I’ll probably look to go there and then target expensive bats. Personally, I don’t find the matchups too sexy for Zack Greinke, Justin Verlander or Gio Gonzalez tomorrow. I don’t see any weather issues as of right now so we should be free to target anything we want.


Alex Wood ($9,700 – Los Angeles Dodgers)

The only elite pitching option I’m really in love with tomorrow is Alex Wood. Wood draws the Diamondbacks, who on the surface don’t seem like a great team to target, but they have been miserable against lefties this year (though as fellow blogger joeycis noted, they should be better with J.D. Martinez in the lineup now). That being said, this season without J.D. they rank dead last in wRC+ and have struck out the 2nd most vs left handed pitching this year (25.8%). Wood this season carries some very impressive numbers. He currently has a 9.66 K/9, with a K percentage of 27% and a SWSTR of 12.4%. Combine that with his GB% of 59.6%, xFIP of 2.93 and SIERA of 3.22 and he brings the high upside while also being able to limit the damage done to him.

Sean Newcomb ($7,200 – Atlanta Braves)

This is certainly a dicey play but I think it comes with pretty good upside if Newcomb can control his pitches well. In his short time in the majors does have a 5.47 bb/9, which is certainly not encouraging. What is encouraging is his 9.40 K/9, 23.1 K% and 11.7 SWSTR%. This guy can miss bats. His manager also isn’t shy about letting him throw a ton of pitches (110 last start, pretty notable for a rookie), so if he could work a few cleaner innings he could actually start getting deeper into games. Philly hasn’t exactly struck out a ton vs lefties (21.5 K%) but they rank in the bottom third of the league in wRC+ and wOBA. I wouldn’t go crazy on this play but I think he’s definitely worth some shares tonight.

Asher Wojciechowski ($6,700 – Cincinnati Reds)

Asher draws the nut matchup tonight, and he might actually go a bit overlooked. The Padres have been “better” recently, which doesn’t really mean a lot to me since their team is made up of Wil Myers and a ton of AA players, but that could scare the herd off of playing a relative unknown against them (or even have them stacking Padres!!). Wojciechowski doesn’t have a ton of MLB experience to his credit (55.1 innings to be precise), but he has demonstrated the ability to strike batters out in his time in the bigs. Wojciechowski carries a career 9.11 K/9, 23.6 K% and 9.2 SWSTR% with him into battle tonight. He only threw 78 pitches in his last start, but he should be a little more stretched out and able to work deeper into the game tonight. Even if he only gives us 5 innings and 5-6 strikeouts, that will be plenty to pay off his inexpensive price tag tonight.

Trevor Cahill ($5,600 – Kansas City Royals)

Trevor Cahill return to the AL has been pretty underwhelming thus far, BUT there’s good news on the horizon. Tonight he gets to play on the road in a pitcher friendly NL park. What does this mean? I think we’re likely to see the revival of K-hill. Despite a few rocky starts since being moved to KC, Cahill still has a 9.95 K/9 ratio this year, striking out 25.3% of the batters he’s faced. The Cardinals have been basically in the middle of the pack in most relevant offensive categories this year so I think we’re getting a crazy bargain with Cahill being priced so cheap. Getting someone with this much strikeout upside this cheap is insane, and this is probably the last opportunity to get him in an NL park this year, so take advantage of it while you can.

A couple other options I’m looking at tonight are Collin McHugh ($8,800 – Houston Astros) and Rick Porcello ($8,200 – Boston Red Sox)

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