Spencer Turnbull has just a 7.7 K-BB% with a 91.4 mph EV. A 50.4 GB% has held his Barrels/BBE to 7.0%, but even then, just two of his 10 Barrels have left the yard, resulting in a 3.83 ERA and 3.59 FIP with all remaining estimators at least half a run higher. The Royals have just a 91 wRC+ and 16.5 K-BB% vs RHP, but with the wind blowing out to left tonight, conditions are favorable for right-handed power. The hottest hitter in baseball over the last 30 days is Salvador Perez (287 wRC+), who now has a 188 wRC+ and .306 ISO vs RHP this season. The cost has risen to $3.7K on FanDuel tonight, but Perez has homered three times in the past two games. While Turnbull doesn’t have much of a split, batters from either side of the plate are above a .310 wOBA and xwOBA against him in his career.
Dylan Cease has ceased to pitch competently in 2020. Over his last five starts, he’s walked 20 with just 17 strikeouts, yet still has just a 4.09 ERA over that span (.220 BABIP, 9.5 HR/FB). He’s allowed just two HRs and Barrels during this run with a 49.2 GB%, but 89.8 mph EV. The 78.9 LOB% doesn’t hurt the results either. His numbers are a mess everywhere except for the scoreboard right now and it’s going to be tough for the White Sox to trust him this post-season. The Cubs haven’t been hitting anything recently though (31 wRC+, 3.4 HR/FB last 30 days), so maybe the magic continues tonight. Just three batters in the projected lineup are above a 100 wRC+ over the last 30 days. One of those guys though, is Ian Happ, who also has a 140 wRC+ and .313 ISO vs RHP since 2019. He costs just $3K on FanDuel. Considering the fact that LHBs have a .387 wOBA (.367 xwOBA) against Cease since he arrived in the majors, Happ could be one of the top values on the board tonight.
Yu Darvish has allowed 10 runs (nine earned) over his last 19 innings, but has still struck out at least seven in eight straight starts, walking more than two just once this year. That gives him a board topping 27.6 K-BB% that even a 27.7 LD% can’t spoil. While a 2.23 FIP matches his 2.22 ERA, additional estimators range as high as a 3.37 DRA, which is still quite impressive. It may account quality of strength of opposing offenses, while also pitching in favorable Wrigley weather a few times. His first four starts were against the Brewers, Royals and Pirates, but he hasn’t faced a non-playoff contender since then. The White Sox have a dangerous offense (107 wRC+, 18.3 HR/FB vs RHP), but this spot is not without upside (White Sox 18.9 K-BB% vs RHP, 31.9 K% last seven days). Only four batters in the projected lineup are above a 99 wRC+ over the last 30 days. Another positive are Darvish’s splits. The White Sox are predominantly a right-handed lineup and batters from that side have just a .260 wOBA against Darvish since 2019. Darvish is the most expensive pitcher on FanDuel at $11.2K. He’s $400 more than Carlos Carrasco, who looks great in a fantastic matchup against the Pirates, but Darvish has the higher strikeout rate by 3.6 points in a more dangerous matchup (which could lower his ownership rate), but one with just as much upside.
The 30 year-old Chris Mazza has thrown just 25 of his 41.1 major league innings this season with just an 8.8 K-BB% and 32.5 LD%, but his 85.7 mph EV is best on the board. He’s allowed just two Barrels and as many HRs with a .373 BABIP and 65.5 LOB%. Very strangely, his contact profile inclusive 6.02 xERA is well above his 5.40 ERA, which exceeds all other estimators by a quarter of a run or more. One assumption we can make is that quality left-handed pitching doesn’t often float around the minor leagues until they’re 30. He’ll attempt to hold an Atlanta offense with a 129 wRC+ and 18.6 HR/FB vs RHP in check tonight. He probably won’t be able to do so. In his short career, batters from either side of the plate have at least a .350 wOBA and xwOBA against Mazza (RHBs .383/.413). The potential NL MVP costs $4.4K on FanDuel tonight, but may just be the top bat on the board. Freddie Freeman has a 171 wRC+ and .303 ISO vs RHP since 2019 and a 206 wRC+ over the last 30 days. He’s up to a 92.5 mph EV on the season with 14.1% Barrels/BBE.
Tejeda has been scratched due to a skin infection. Isiah Kiner-Falefa will now play shortstop with Sherten Apostel in at third base. Ronald Guzman will jump from the eighth spot to the seventh spot in the order with Apostel batting eighth.
Alex Cobb has been one of the hardest hit pitchers in the league with a 91.1 mph EV (10.7% Barrels/BBE) despite keeping 52.7% of his contact on the ground. Furthermore, while a full quarter of his fly balls have left the yard, that still only represents eight of his 15 Barrels. And we haven’t even mentioned the 17% strikeout rate. So while his 4.76 ERA is in line with his 4.66 SIERA and even well above a 4.24 DRA, a 5.10 FIP and 7.03 xERA (includes contact profile via Statcast) see things much differently. At 5.34 implied runs, the Red Sox are expected to be one of the top offenses on the main slate. Everyone in the lineup is above a 95 wRC+ with at least a .160 ISO vs RHP since 2019, while batters from either side of the plate are above a .360 wOBA and xwOBA in 57.2 innings against Cobb since last year. Only two batters in the projected Boston lineup are below a 120 wRC+ over the last 30 days. Rafael Devers (151 wRC+, .285 ISO vs RHP since last season) has caught fire with a 165 wRC+ over the last month and now has a lineup leading 92.5 mph EV for the season. He may be one of the top bats on the board tonight. For nearly $1K less on FanDuel, Alex Verdugo (123 wRC+, .203 ISO) may be one of the best values.
Corbin Burnes has struck out at least nine in four of his last five starts, allowing just one earned run over that span. On top of this, he’s generated just an 86.8 mph EV. Even so, he’s allowed eight Barrels, while just one of his pitches has left the park. While a 1.78 FIP agrees with his 1.77 ERA, all of his remaining estimators are quite a bit higher, but when a 3.07 SIERA is the worst they can say about you, you’re doing a lot of things right. Burns is your top pitcher tonight, even on a six game slate that includes Walker Buehler (potentially limited workload), Lance Lynn (low upside matchup against contact prone Astros) and Ian Anderson (weather concerns). Burnes faces a very marginal St Louis offense (93 wRC+, 23.9 K%, 10.5 HR/FB vs RHP) in a very negative run environment (Cardinals 12.7 HR/FB at home). Only one batter in the projected St Louis lineup is above a 118 wRC+ or .206 ISO vs RHP since 2019. Only three are above a 98 wRC+ over the last 30 days. Lynn likely holds a workload advantage over Burnes, having thrown more than 100 pitches every time out, but Burnes seems to have the edge in every other aspect.
Michael Fulmer has made 11 starts without exceeding three innings pitched in any of them, this by design apparently. In just 25.1 innings, he’s allowed seven HRs with a 6.6 K-BB% and 90.9 mph EV. A .378 BABIP and 21.9 HR/FB aren’t supposed to be sustainable and that may be true even here. Despite the exit velocity, he’s only allowed as many Barrels as HRs. His best estimator, is still an awful 5.47 SIERA that’s more than two and a half runs below his ERA though. Batters from the right side of the plate have hammered Fulmer for a wOBA and xwOBA above .500 since returning from injury this year! LHBs haven’t been bad either (.320 wOBA, .323 xwOBA). Fulmer is certainly still a pitcher daily fantasy players want to attack. Let’s look at the hottest bat in baseball over the last month. Salvador Perez has a 280 wRC+ over the last 30 days and nobody else is even above 250 (10 PA min.). Perez homered twice last night and now has 179 wRC+ with a .286 ISO vs RHP in a little over 100 PAs since last season. He’s barreled 11.4% of his contact with a 90.6 mph EV overall this year. With the consideration of potentially paying down for pitching tonight, a $3.6K catcher on FanDuel could be a top bat.