Both Charlie Blackmon & Freddie Freeman have a .250+ ISO vs LHP this year
The Rockies are once again implied for the highest total on the board (6.22), although why an offense with just an 88 wRC+ at home, 96 wRC+ vs LHP and potentially without Nolan Arenado again is consistently projected above six runs is perplexing, as they are generally not a much better offense than the visiting team. Atlanta has a 91 wRC+ on the road and 99 wRC+ vs LHP, but are implied for an entire run less (5.28), though without their top RH bat as well. The most interesting aspect of this game might be the desirability of both team's top bats, both left-handed against left-handed pitchers tonight. Charlie Blackmon (142 wRC+, .260 ISO) and Freddie Freeman (116 wRC+, .250 ISO) have both hit LHP well this year. LHBs have a .358 wOBA against Sean Newcomb, but that appears to be mostly BABIP luck related (.383) considering a 39.1 LD% on just a 29.2% hard hit rate with one HR. Pitchers generally don't see their BABIP improve at Coors, but you generally don't see line drive rates higher than hard hit rates either. Overall, batters from both side do have an 87.7 mph aEV against Newcomb according to Statcast though, and that is a bit high. Kyle Freeland has some unique splits. He has a 56.1 GB%, which is a necessity with just a 14.6 K%. However, 108 LHBs have a 26.9 K% against him with just a 36.1 GB% (RHBs 60.6%) and higher hard hit rate (32.9% to 28.6%). Depending on what projected ownership rates suggest later, these two premier lefty bats are certainly worth exposure if it appears they might go under-owned against a same-handed pitcher at a high cost. Despite the ability to smother RH contact into the ground, Kurt Suzuki looks like an interesting option for those who want Coors exposure at a lower cost. He has a 127 wRC+ and .257 ISO vs LHP since last season with a 47.9% fly ball rate.
Top projected batters tonight include several from each side at Coors
Tonight's top projected hitters are a pair of Coors bats. Charlie Blackmon (142 wRC+, .292 ISO vs RHP this year) should enjoy a matchup against Julio Teheran (LHBs .355 wOBA, 35.1 Hard%, 37.8 GB% since 2016), while Freddie Freeman (188 wRC+, .339 ISO vs RHP this year) faces a returning Chad Bettis, making his first start of the season (LHBs .302 wOBA, 25.8 Hard%, 56.8 GB% last season). Aaron Judge (171 wRC+, .317 ISO vs RHP) rounds out the top three, but he continues to struggle since the break (55 wRC+ last seven days) and Rafael Montero has managed contact well (84 mph aEV), despite his other faults. He has allowed seven HRs over his last four starts though. Giancarlo Stanton, who has homered in nine of his last 10 games, appears fourth against the very contact prone lefty, Ty Blach (11.8 K%). The Braves and Rockies both enjoy a pair of players each among the top 10 projections (Ender Inciarte, Gerardo Parra) on either site, while both Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant appear among the top 10 on FanDuel (Bryant currently sits 11th on DraftKings). While players probably aren't concerned as much with value bats tonight considering the state of pitching, Ender Inciarte (3.93 Pt/$/K) costs just $3.2K on FanDuel, while Chris Davis (2.96 Pt/$/K) projects as the top value for less than $3K on DraftKings against Yovani Gallardo.
Five of 20 teams implied for 5.5 runs or more with Colorado, Arizona and Texas all active parks tonight
Five of 20 teams in play tonight (25%) currently have an implied run line above 5.5 runs with four more above 4.9 runs. It's not a pitching rich slate and some of the quality arms who are in play are pitching in places like Arizona and Texas, while there's also a game at Coors tonight. With the Rockies leading the slate with a 6.38 run total, hosting an extreme fly ball oriented, right handed pitcher, Charlie Blackmon (142 wRC+, .292 ISO vs RHP this year) may be more popular than any pitcher on the slate. Although Freddie Freeman (188 wRC+, .339 ISO vs RHP this season) should be pretty popular too against the returning Chad Bettis. High end bats with speculative pitching may be the way to go tonight without concern towards stacking any particular lineup. Giancarlo Stanton (150 wRC+, .360 ISO vs LHP this year) faces a contact prone lefty (Ty Blach 11.8 K%) and may have already homered again by the time players read this. Justin Upton (182 wRC+, .306 ISO vs LHP in 2017) faces Martin Perez (RHBs .353 wOBA since 2016) in Texas. Josh Donaldson (132 wRC+, .221 ISO vs RHP this season), faces Jake Odorizzi, whom he has four HRs against in 27 PAs and Baseball Savant records a 98.3 mph aEV (11 BBEs). Michael Conforto (168 wRC+, .307 ISO vs RHP this year) gets to face Luis Cessa (LHBs 37.1 Hard% career) in Yankee Stadium. Even considering all of those bats with great potential tonight doesn't even touch upon the Yankees (5.71 runs) or Cubs (5.63) with the highest implied run lines outside of Coors tonight. Players should seriously consider building a lineup with a concentration of strong bats rather than one around any single pitcher.
Freeman enjoys three-hit night versus Cards
Freeman was having a decent night already when he stepped to the plate as the winning run with the bases loaded in the ninth inning. He didn't provide any huge fireworks, but his two-run single closed the gap, and Freeman promptly stole second base to put the winning run in scoring position. He was left there, but it was still a very strong performance for the 27-year-old, who's now hitting .319/.422/.638 with 21 homers, 48 RBI, 56 runs scored and seven steals in 70 games this year.
No weather concerns for Wednesday's afternoon games; one spot to monitor this evening
We're not expecting any precipitation for the five early contests Wednesday. Three of the games will have temperatures in the 80s while the SEA-OAK and CHC-SFG contests are expected to be in the 60s at first pitch. We're expecting gusts up to 25 mph out to left center in San Francisco, but that's only a little stronger than normal. This evening, the PHI-ATL matchup may be in danger on the main slate. It's currently considered YELLOW/ORANGE due to scattered showers and storms. It'll be worth checking out the afternoon forecast when we'll have a clearer picture of the situation. We'll have an updated forecast around 5:30pm eastern available on our weather page as usual; following that post Kevin will be offering updates in premium chat from 6pm until lock. The link to our premium chat channel is below.
Freeman homers, drives in four in Braves win
The game was scoreless into the sixth inning, and Freeman's RBI single knotted the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the sixth. He came around to score to give the Braves a lead, and he added on with a three-run dong in the seventh inning. The homer was his 20th of the year, giving him 45 RBI and 53 runs scored. The versatile corner infielder is batting a robust .317/.418/.642 in 65 games this year.
Freeman goes 2-for-3 with an RBI and a steal
He poked an RBI single to center field in the fifth inning. The stolen base was his sixth of the season, which matches his career-high total from a year ago. Freeman missed six weeks with a fractured wrist and hasn't missed a beat since returning. He played third base for about two weeks but is now back to his regular gig at first base. He has a .316 batting average with 19 home runs and 41 RBI in 62 games.
Freddie Freeman moving back to 1st base
Freeman's third base experiment has come to an end. With top prospect Ozzie Albies taking over at second base, Atlanta's third base reps will now be split between Brandon Phillips and Johan Camargo. Matt Adams, who had been covering for Freeman at first, figures to play left field on a regular basis.
DraftKings lock moved up to 7pm EST Friday, from 7:05pm EST, due to ATL-PHI gametime change
With the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies choosing to move their start time up to 7 pm EST due to impending weather concerns, DraftKings has officially announced that they will move up their lock time up five minutes to 7 pm EST for all contests on Friday's main slate. However, DraftKings still obviously offers late-swap for MLB, so players in remaining games will lock at their originally scheduled times per usual.
FanDuel contests will lock at 7pm Friday t (five minutes earlier), late swap still available
With the Phillies and Braves moving up their start time to 7pm due to impending weather issues, FanDuel has announced that they will move up their lock to 7pm for all contests on the main slate as well (five minutes earlier than usual). Remember that FanDuel offers late swap, so all players will still be able to adjust their lineups for all players not involved in this game.