Written by: Coleman Bahr – Staff Writing Intern (@ColemanBahr)
Welcome back! It’s been a fun All-Star break, but I’m ready to tackle the second half of this season. In this article I’m going to preview the top cash, and tournament pitchers, along with a few pitchers I’m going to be targeting hitters against. With that being said, let’s get to it!
| Pitchers to Target in Cash Games
Madison Bumgarner – DraftKings: $11,100, FanDuel: $11,900 – San Francisco Giants
First off, DraftKings has Bumgarner severely mispriced, and he is almost a must have at that price. He’s coming off one if his best performances of the season, pitching a complete game shutout and striking out 14 against the Diamondbacks. Tonight, he heads over to Petco Park to face off against the Padres, who have some hitters that can mash lefties, but Bumgarner is so talented up to the point where he is almost matchup proof. Bumgarner is one of the elite strikeout pitchers in the majors with a 28.5% strikeout rate, and he’s also heavily favored facing off against Andrew Cashner, who has been anything but impressive this season.
Marcus Stroman – DraftKings: $7,500, FanDuel: $7,800 – Toronto Blue Jays
Stroman has had his struggles in his 2016 campaign, but he took some momentum into the All- Star Break with back to back quality starts, including six strikeouts and double digit ground balls in each start. It’s always hard to love a pitchers upside against the Athletics who have one of the lowest strikeout rates in the league, but they don’t necessarily have threatening bats when facing righties. Stroman may not produce the upside that you need for tournaments, but he makes for a great play in cash games where you can settle with a quality start. Stroman also comes in at a nice discount on both sites, and he gets a slight park boost pitching in Oakland.
| Pitchers to Target in Tournaments
Chris Archer – DraftKings: $8,500, FanDuel: $8,800 – Tampa Bay Rays
If you read my article yesterday, you are well aware that I expect Archer to finish 2016 with ace-like numbers, and it all starts tonight despite a tough matchup against the Baltimore Orioles. While Chris Archer has been absolutely terrible on the road, tonight’s game is at home where he has a 2.70 earned run average this season, and a strikeout rate over 30%. While the Orioles definitely have some elite sluggers throughout their lineup, the only bat Archer has really struggled with is Manny Machado who is the lone Oriole who holds a batting average of at least .300 against Archer. The Orioles also have one of the higher strikeout rates against righties at 22.4%. If Archer can keep the ball in the park I like his chances to grab the win, and possibly get double digit strikeouts along the way.
Anthony DeSclafani – DraftKings: $9,600, FanDuel: $7,200 – Cincinnati Reds
I project DeSclafani to be extremely low owned on DraftKings at $9,600, but on FanDuel he could be a popular pick at just $7,200 as he is facing off against the Brewers at home. Anytime the Brewers face a righty you have to give the pitcher some consideration, and you have to take a really close look especially if the game is away from Miller Park. The Brewers not only hold the highest strikeout rate against righties, but they also hold the highest road strikeout rate to add to their misery. DeSclafani isn’t necessarily a guy I look to for high strikeout upside every time he takes the mound, but he has struck out at least five in his last four starts, and I can definitely see him punching out around seven batters tonight. DeSclafani has been on a roll lately with four straight quality starts, and he is a great spot to continue that streak tonight. He is a stronger FanDuel play, but I can still use him over on DraftKings where he will be much lower owned, and he can still provide some decent upside.
| Pitchers to Target Hitters Against
Matt Garza – Milwaukee Brewers
Garza is not the pitcher he once was, evident by his 5.54 earned run average, and a meager 12.8% strikeout rate. He also has allowed a slugging percentage of .500 or higher to both sides of the plate, and righties have a batting average of .377 against him. For stacking purposes I’m looking to Zack Cozart, Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, and Adam Duvall who all have great numbers against righties, and they should all be able to knock up Garza tonight. Even if Garza only lasts a few innings, the Brewers have one of the worst bullpens in the league, and the Reds should have ample opportunities to knock in some runs tonight.
Bud Norris – Los Angeles Dodgers
Bud Norris has been pitching pretty well lately, but his stats against the Diamondbacks are too significant too ignore. He certainly hasn’t enjoyed pitching against the Diamondbacks with a 0-7 record accompanied by a 13.92 earned run average, while also going 0-4 at Chase Field. Chase Field always provides a tough task for pitchers as it’s one of the best hitters parks in baseball, and even though the dome will most likely be closed tonight, there is still a slight advantage to the hitters. This would a better matchup for the Diamondbacks if Norris was a lefty, but his track record in this stadium against this team just can’t be ignored. The top batter tonight for Arizona is Jake Lamb who simply crushes righties, and Goldschmidt is also a very good hitter against righties. However after that, not too many hitters have eye popping numbers against righties, but I would simply just stack the top four hitters in the lineup as they should all see numerous scoring opportunities all night.
That’s all I have for today, thanks for reading! If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @ColemanBahr, good luck tonight!