MLB Grind Down: Saturday, April 20th

The RotoGrinders MLB Grind Down will give you an in-depth analysis into the upcoming MLB schedule. This article will break down the numbers for every single game and give you analysis on which trends you can exploit. While matchups are a major factor in daily fantasy baseball, there are plenty of other factors to consider such as injuries, weather, and salaries.

The analysis should point you in the right direction, but it is still up to you to decipher the information and make your own selections. No sport has more variance than baseball. The best choice is not always the right choice but following the trends will win you money over time.

Note: As always, if you want to try a new DFS site, be sure to click through a RotoGrinders link and use our DraftKings promo code, FanDuel promo code, and FantasyDraft promo code to receive the best perks in the industry.

Stackability Rating System:

BLUE – One of the top stacks of the slate.
GREEN – A full stack is viable in GPPs.
YELLOW – Not the best stack, but hitters are in play.
ORANGE – Tread lightly, but potentially target a hitter or two.
RED – Fade this offense in all formats.

Kansas City at NY Yankees – 1:05 PM ET

Kansas City NY Yankees
Heath Fillmyer Masahiro Tanaka
Vegas Moneyline Vegas Over/Under
NYY -230 8.5
Stats wOBA xwOBA HC% HR/9 K% GB% Stats wOBA xwOBA HC% HR/9 K% GB%
SP vs. Left (2016-17) 0.298 0.328 34.8% 0.54 15.4% 47.4% SP vs. Left (2016-17) 0.289 0.307 33.6% 0.91 23.3% 52.5%
SP vs. Right (2016-17) 0.345 0.344 43.4% 1.79 16.6% 46.5% SP vs. Right (2016-17) 0.325 0.303 40.9% 1.72 26.0% 44.9%

Pitcher Grind Down

Heath Fillmyer
FanDuel DraftKings FantasyDraft
Salary: $5,600 Salary: $4,700 Salary: $9,400
Salary Rank: 29 of 30 Salary Rank: 30 of 30 Salary Rank: 24 of 30
Stats Starts SIERA ERA K% BB% GB% HC% SC% aFV SwS%
2018 13 4.84 4.26 16.6% 9.3% 46.4% 39.5% 16.2% 92.5 8.9%
2019 2 5.34 9.00 10.0% 7.5% 51.6% 32.3% 6.5% 91.2 5.8%

Heath Fillmyer is the cheapest pitcher on the early slate, and there’s a reason for that. He’s a right-hander with a career strikeout rate of just 15.9% at the major league level, and he’s getting a major park downgrade going into New York today to face the Yankees. The matchup isn’t as daunting as it would normally be with so many of the Yankees’ good hitters on the IL, but Fillmyer isn’t anything more than a full-on punt in tournaments if you want to get up to bats. There’s far more downside than upside in this play.

Quick Breakdown: Fillmyer is only an option if you have tons of risk tolerance and want to be able to just load up on bats in GPPs.

Masahiro Tanaka
FanDuel DraftKings FantasyDraft
Salary: $9,100 Salary: $9,200 Salary: $17,800
Salary Rank: 9 of 30 Salary Rank: 8 of 30 Salary Rank: 7 of 30
Stats Starts SIERA ERA K% BB% GB% HC% SC% aFV SwS%
2018 27 3.50 3.75 25.0% 5.5% 47.2% 37.3% 16.8% 91.7 14.1%
2019 4 3.62 3.22 23.1% 5.5% 55.4% 40.0% 12.3% 91.5 11.3%

Masahiro Tanaka has a K-rate (23.5%) and a walk rate (5.5%) near his career averages, and he gets a decent matchup against a low-power Royals lineup this afternoon. Four of the hitters in the lineup against him have above-average strikeout rates, but it’s a little concerning that the right-hander hasn’t thrown more than 87 pitches in any of his starts to this point. Tanaka is a perfectly fine option on this slate, but he hardly stands out above the rest of the high-priced options.

Quick Breakdown: Tanaka is a fine option against the Royals this afternoon.

Batter Grind Down

Tanaka has shown a slight reverse split in his career, with right-handed hitters having posted a career wOBA of .305 against him. His ground ball rate is also 9% higher against lefties, but it’s worth noting the Royals have a super low implied run total of 3.20, which is the second-lowest on the entire day. I’d pick my spots with some KC bats rather than opting for the stack. Whit Merrifield looks like the top overall option here, followed by power bats like Jorge Soler or Lucas Duda. Adalberto Mondesi is a tad overpriced, but if you do opt for a Royals stack I would imagine you’d want him in it.

Elite Plays – None

Secondary PlaysWhit Merrifield, Jorge Soler, Lucas Duda, Adalberto Mondesi

StackabilityORANGE / RED

The Yankees are projected to score 5.30 runs today, which is the third-highest mark on the day behind only Houston and Philadelphia. Fillmyer doesn’t have a long big league track record, but he’s allowed a .344 wOBA to right-handed hitters compared to a .298 mark vs. lefties. There isn’t a ton to love in the NY lineup these days, but I do think we can stack what we do have. Aaron Judge is arguably the top hitter on the slate, while Gleyber Torres, Luke Voit, D.J. LeMahieu and Clint Frazier are plenty viable, too. Mike Ford and Mike Tauchman feel like reaches, but you can differentiate your NYY stack by including some of those bottom-of-the-order hitters.

Elite PlaysAaron Judge, Clint Frazier, Gleyber Torres, D.J. LeMahieu, Luke Voit

Secondary PlaysMike Tauchman, Mike Ford


About the Author

  • Taylor Smith (tcsmith031)

  • Taylor Smith is a native Texan (required by all fellow Texans to report this at all times) and Southern California-based sports writer. He has been playing daily fantasy sports regularly since 2012, going back to the days of DraftStreet (RIP). He specializes in MLB and NBA while dabbling in a few other sports like a true degen when the other two are out of season. He has written about DFS in the past at Bang The Book, and you can find some of his previous work on SB Nation and FanRag Sports.


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