Written by: Phillip Beneteau – Staff Writing Intern (@FantasyPhilled)
Welcome to another segment of Leading Off with Phillip Beneteau. In this daily segment I highlight leadoff hitters to target as well as players who were moved up in the batting order which will spike their value for the day. As most DFS MLB players know, hitting leadoff and near the top of the order is huge for DFS potential, especially if it is a player who is just being moved up because of injury or simply in a great match up. I am going to get straight to the point today as there are 4 mini-stacks I like for tonight’s slate.
Manny Machado (3B/SS) – DraftKings: $3,700, FanDuel: $4,100 – Baltimore Orioles
This is a case where something needs to break for Manny Machado. He has just four hits in 21 at bats since returning from the All Star break. This is a great day to get back on Machado as his price has dropped, especially on DraftKings. His talent is just too high to not play him in this matchup where he has five hits in eight at bats, including two home runs against pitcher Trevor Bauer.
Jose Altuve (2B) – DraftKings: $5,200, FanDuel: $4,200 – Houston Astros
While Jose Altuve has some of the best home/away batting splits in the MLB, he is still batting .290 at home. Altuve has a batting average of .417 with two home run in 17 at bats against pitcher Matt Shoemaker. Altuve also is riding a four game multi hit streak in which I see continuing tonight!
Justin Upton (OF) – DraftKings: $3,600, FanDuel: $3,300 – Detroit Tigers
The transition to Detroit in the offseason has not lead to the numbers that most expected. Justin Upton is sporting the worst batting average of his career to date and is tough to trust on a nightly basis. Luckily we play a one night game, andtonight Upton will be facing pitcher Jacob Turner. Upton has a batting average of .333 in nine at bats, including two home runs. I see Upton making a great value play tonight at U.S. Cellular Field which is a very hitter friendly park.
Starlin Castro (2B) – DraftKings: $2,600, FanDuel: $2,300 – New York Yankees
If you are looking at saving some money tonight on your 2B position, look no further than Starlin Castro. While you might say that pitcher Madison Bumgarner is never smart to play against, no matter how cheap, Castro might just be the exception at his price. He has great home splits where he is almost batting .300 for the season. Castro has a batting average of .429 in 14 at bats against Bumgarner.
| Texas Rangers Mini-Stack
The Texas Rangers will face left-handed pitcher Danny Duffy. Duffy has been great this season as he brings his 5-1 record with 3.27 ERA to the mound as the Rangers visit tonight. What stands out here are the splits. Duffy shuts down left-handed batters, but has allowed 12 home runs to right-handed hitters this season. While Duffy is 2-0 at home this season, he still has a 4.07 ERA. Elvis Andrus (SS) and Ian Desmond (OF) are top left-handed batters for me tonight as they smash left-handed pitching. Desmond has back-to-back three hit games, with a home run in both games. Andrus has a batting average of .368 against left-handed pitching this season. Both of these players will appear in most of my lineups this evening with a hot forecast in Kansas City.
| Boston Red Sox Stack
If you watched any of the Red Sox game last night, you were either cheering constantly with the amount of scoring, or you were drinking away your money if you faded them. Tonight will be the same. The Red Sox face pitcher Kyle Gibson who has been anything but stellar this season as he has a 5.12 ERA this season. Gibson’s ERA jumps also when he plays on the road, and in night games. Add the fact that Gibson has allowed a .313 average to left handed hitters this season, it is hard to think that David Ortiz (1B) won’t be the top play across the board tonight. Ortiz will be the first player I targettonight, and Sandy Leon (C) will make for a great place to save money. Leon has been great this season for the Red Sox and will be batting 8th tonight. Leon has a .404 batting average at home this season and is a switch hitter. If you are looking to pivot from the top of the Red Sox lineup, I would go after Jackie Bradley (OF) as the bottom of the lineup features the Red Sox lefties this evening.
Thanks for reading! Good luck this evening!