The Rockets will have a few more players in the frontcourt, as Olynyk will start in his return back. House gets the start as well at shooting guard; despite only playing 16 and 18 minutes the last two games, he gets the start but won’t have too high a ceiling likely.
The Rockets had two big men questionable, and will only be getting one back as they prepare to play the Portland Trail Blazers. Olynyk will play today after missing one game with an ankle injury, while Wood was ruled out due to an ankle injury and will miss his fourth game in a row. Olynyk should get the start at center, while KJ Martin and Jae’Sean Tate play the other forward positions. The Rockets will have 10 bodies available, as Cam Oliver was signed to a 10 day contract, and is available to make his debut. The prices of most of the Rockets have gone up, while they’ve got more bodies, so it’ll be tough to prioritize anyone other Olynyk, and even he’s risky as he may be limited as he returns from injury.
Oliver is available to make his Rockets debut Monday, giving the Rockets 10 available bodies. He’ll give the Rockets some frontcourt depth, and will take some minutes away from Olynyk, KJ Martin, and Jae’Sean Tate.
Huerter will join the starting lineup, as he takes the spot of the injured Tony Snell. De’Andre Hunter will play off the bench, and will be on a minutes restriction, as he’ll join Danilo Gallinari and Lou Williams as the key reserves. Huerter’s usage will likely go down as he joins the starting lineup, but his minutes will go up and could make him a valuable contrarian option for the Hawks in a high paced matchup.
Adams was downgraded from doubtful to out, and will miss his third straight game against the Memphis Grizzlies. It should lead to another start for Willy Hernnagomez, while Jaxson Hayes backs him up. Both players produced great last night despite splitting minutes right down the middle, but it’s most likely that whoever gets more minutes between the two will be a better play. The salaries of both have gone up, but Hayes is a bit cheaper and may be sneakier assuming he comes off the bench.
NAW will be on a similar minutes restriction from yesterday, as the Pelicans prepare to play the Memphis Grizzlies. NAW played 21 minutes yesterday, but did end up closing for the team and is clearly one of coach Van Gundy’s trusted players. There’s a chance that he gets a few more minutes as he works his way into shape, but he’ll likely stay in that range, as Van Gundy said he wants to keep him in the 20-24 range. He’ll most likely be chipping away from Kira Lewis Jr. the most, along with a few minutes from Naji Marshall and James Johnson.
The Cavs elected to start Damyean Dotson at shooting guard, which makes him a phenomenal value. The Cavs will only have nine bodies available, and with Dotson getting the start, his floor for minutes is significantly higher. Wade will remain in the starting lineup, and with the frontcourt even more hobbled, he’ll be thrust into minutes in the mid thirties and will be a great play as well.
Hunter will make his long awaited return for the Hawks as they prepare to play the Washington Wizards. Coach McMillan mentioned he’d be on a minutes restriction, so he won’t be able to play heavy minutes, but will take away a few minutes from his teammates. Snell was ruled out due to an Achilles injury, so a starting spot opens up as Snell had been starting for the last few games. There’s a chance Hunter takes that spot, but it’s more likely to be Kevin Huerter or Solomon Hill that slots in. Hunter will get eased into action, as the Hawks prepare for the playoffs.
Mathews will get the start for the injured Bradley Beal as the Wizards prepare to play the Atlanta Hawks. Mathews does not produce great from a per minute basis, but he will have to play more minutes now that he’s starting. The lineup will certainly allow Westbrook to produce at his amazing rates, while Rui Hachimura shows increased usage without Beal and will need to continue to play big minutes for the team.
Brogdon and Lamb were both ruled out ahead of the Pacers game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Brogdon will miss his sixth game in a row with a hamstring injury, while Lamb will miss his twelfth straight game with a knee injury despite being listed as questionable for each game. We’ve seen what the Pacers will do in these circumstances; Edmond Sumner and Caris LeVert will start at the guard spots, while McDermott and Oshae Brissett will start at forward alongside Sabonis. TJ McConnell and Aaron Holiday will chip in off the bench. Sabonis and LeVert will certainly be the top options for the team, as they show major splits with no Brogdon on the court. The prices of the Pacers have gone up lately, but Sabonis and LeVert are certainly capable of paying it off.
Hunter and Snell will both be game-time decisions for the Hawks ahead of their game against the Washington Wizards. Snell has started for the team the last few games, but has seen his role minimize as the Hawks have gotten healthier. Hunter is angling for a return from the knee surgery that’s kept him out since March. If Hunter plays, he’ll be on a minutes restriction, so he shouldn’t be in consideration for DFS, but he will chip away at the minutes of some of the other Hawks, mainly Bogdan Bogdanovic, and Danilo Gallinari. Snell would play the same role; he could take minutes away from players who’d be in consideration otherwise.
Since recording just a single out on Opening Day, as he walked three of eight Royals with a single strikeout, Kyle Gibson has allowed just six runs over six starts. His first two home runs were allowed in his last start, in which he still completed eight innings with eight strikeouts in Minnesota. The .248 BABIP and 5.9 HR/FB are both a bit unsustainable and at this point, we’d probably just further frustrate ourselves by expecting his 13.3 SwStr% to result in a much higher strikeout rate (21.3%) because he has just a career 1.75 K/SwStr. This year’s mark is a career high mark so far, so perhaps he reaches league average. He continues to generate ground balls (52.2%), which limits Barrels (5.2%). His SIERA and xFIP are around four. The Giants have a 102 wRC+ and 15.8 HR/FB vs RHP, but also a staggering 28 K%. Mike Yastrzemski’s expected return to the lineup should give them a boost, if healthy. He has a 128 wRC+ and .254 ISO vs RHP since 2019. Mike Tauchman (111 wRC+, .195 ISO) would be a top value should he find the leadoff spot again. Wilmer Flores is the only batter in the projected lineup below a 100 wRC+ over the last 30 days. Batters from either side of the plate are between a .319 and .345 wOBA and xwOBA against Gibson since 2019, but he does seem to be pitching at a slightly higher level this year. While nobody is averaging six full innings per start on the slate tonight, Gibson comes closest, but is the only pitcher to exceed $9K on FD ($9.5K). He may be a better value on DraftKings ($8.6K).
Alex Wood is flashing upside from 2017, when he ran up a career high 3.1 fWAR for the Dodgers. He’s struck out 25.6% with a 13.1 SwStr% with the disclaimer being that he’s had two starts against the Marlins and two against the Rockies. In addition, 16 of his 22 strikeouts have come in the home starts. It’s good news that he’s in another perceived high upside matchup against the Rangers at home. Or is it? He’s walked just 5.8% of batters faced and with 63.2% of his contact on the ground, he’s allowed just two Barrels (3.4%) so far. The Rangers have a 98 wRC+ and 18.8 HR/FB vs LHP this year, which is probably not you would expect. In fact, Nick Solak, Adolis Garcia, Joey Gallo and Charlie Culberson all exceed a 130 wRC+ and .180 ISO vs LHP since 2019. Garcia still costs just $3.2K on DraftKings. Only two batters in the projected lineup are below a 120 wRC+ over the last 30 days. The Texas lineup is expected to be balanced and batters from either side of the plate are between a .333 to .350 wOBA and xwOBA against Wood since 2019. However, the projected middle of the lineup for Texas (Nate Lowe, Garcia and Gallo) all exceed a 28 K% vs LHP since 2019. Wood is the highest priced pitcher at $9.8K on DraftKings tonight, so he’s going to need another peak performance at home tonight. He’s thrown 97 pitches and completed six innings in each of those home starts and does have the best defense on the board (+8 Runs Prevented via Statcast) behind him.
Carmelo will miss his second straight game due to an ankle injury, and will miss the game against the Houston Rockets. With no Melo last game, it was Nassir Little who got the first crack at his minutes, and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson coming in for him right after. Neither player will be trustworthy, as coach Stotts elects to run his starters heavy minutes, and even if Little or RHJ got more playing time, the production concentrates heavily around Dame, McCollum, and Jusuf Nurkic. It’s more likely that Norman Powell and Robert Covington benefit from an extra couple of minutes than anything else, although the risk of a blowout is clearly there against the Rockets.
This will be a bullpen game for the Marlins. Jordan Holloway has never started a major league game, but last pitched five days ago, throwing three innings and 61 pitches. Theoretically, he could be stretched enough to cover nearly five innings here with some efficiency, though the Marlins have not named a starting pitcher yet. He’s struck out 10 of 37 batters faced with a 10.5 SwStr% and has yet to allow a Barrel on 24 BBE. Fangraphs recently ranked him their 35th best prospect, profiling more as a reliever. Either way, the Diamondbacks are going to see a lot of the Miami bullpen, which has a 2.34 ERA and 2.97 FIP over the last 30 days, both top three marks in the majors. The Diamondbacks would prefer to see LHP because they have just an 88 wRC+ vs RHP. Among projected starters, David Peralta tops the lineup with a 115 wRC+ vs RHP since 2019 and Eduardo Escobar has the top ISO at .208. Interesting to note that the Diamonbacks’ website states that the roof will be open for this game, but Statcast’s new Park Factors suggests that wOBA and HRs decrease substantially under open air conditions over the last three years. Perhaps a humidor effect?
A 13.8 K-BB% represents the second consecutive season of decline for Luke Weaver. Six of 10 Barrels (11.2%) have left the yard with a career high 92.2 mph EV and just 35.6% of his contact on the ground. Some name recognition, along with a favorable matchup, might over-inflate his ownership rates. The numbers just mentioned might provide some incentive to go underweight. The Marlins do have just an 86 wRC+, 27.2 K% and 10.6 HR/FB vs RHP. Weaver doesn’t have much of a split with batters from either side of the plate between a .322 and .336 wOBA and xwOBA against him since 2019. Four batters in the projected lineup are above a 100 wRC+, but only three above a .170 ISO since 2019. If there were a spot where Weaver were going to exceed his current season marks, this is in, but he costs an unsightly $9K on DraftKings. For $1.5K less on FanDuel, he does have the potential to be one of the better values on the board.
The Cavs will be extremely shorthanded once again as they prepare to take on the Indiana Pacers. Love will sit out after starting yesterday for the team, while Osman, Garland, and Hartenstein will all miss the game after missing yesterday as well. Dean Wade should stay in the starting lineup and take Love’s spot, while Damyean Dotson or Brodric Thomas will take Osman’s. Hartenstein’s minutes will get filled likely be a combination of Mfiondu Kabengele and Anderson Varejao again; Kabengele played 23 minutes yesterday while Varejao played 16 minutes as both players chip in for frontcourt depth. Wade will be the most popular value play; he’s played 28 minutes or more in five games in a row, and the Cavs are only losing bodies, so he’s likely in line for at least 32-34 minutes. Thomas or Dotson could be sneaky plays; one of them will likely start, and have to play substantial minutes for a team missing bodies, in a fast paced matchup against the Pacers.