Written by: Coleman Bahr – Staff Writer (@ColemanBahr)
We have an abbreviated nine game slate of baseball tonight, but there are actually tons of pitching options that I like. In this article I am going to preview the top cash, and tournament pitchers taking the hill, and one pitcher I will be stacking against. With that being said, let’s get to it!
| Pitchers to Target in Cash Games
Corey Kluber – DraftKings: $11,600, FanDuel: $10,800 – Cleveland Indians
If you are looking for the guy with the highest ceiling on tonight’s slate, Corey Kluber is your guy. He is the only true ace on this short slate, and his matchup does not warrant too much difficulty against the Minnesota Twins. Earlier in August the Twins were something to fear, however they are in the middle of a cold streak, ranking 29th in weighted runs created plus, and 28th in slugging percentage in the last 14 days. Kluber has breezed through the competition in his last three starts, only allowing only one run in two of the three starts, and striking out at least seven batters in every start. He will certainly be the chalky option as he is the only ace on the slate, but he is usable in all formats due to his upside and safety.
Luke Weaver – DraftKings: $4,500, FanDuel: $6,800 – St. Louis Cardinals
Luke Weaver is my go to guy on FanDuel at just $6,800, and he will be in every DraftKings lineup I make with a basically minimum priced salary. His upside is undeniable, in his last start he pitched six innings of one run ball while striking out seven against the Oakland Athletics. Also, his matchup for tonight is light work compared to the A’s. He plays the Milwaukee Brewers who own the league high strikeout rate against righties, while only sporting a wRC+ of 87 (26th in the league). The youngster has impressed many in his short stint in the big leagues, sporting a strikeout rate closing in on 25%, and a hard contact rate of only 22.7%. Again, I have a feeling this option will be chalky as Weaver will allow you to stack up on all the big bats, but the salary relief combined with the upside is undeniable, so he is a go in all formats for me.
| Pitchers to Target in Tournaments
David Phelps – DraftKings: $8,500, FanDuel: $6,700 – Miami Marlins
David Phelps is a solid pitcher, but I think he is slightly overrated, however, he still has solid upside. His strikeout rate to righties is incredible at 37%, but he struggles with lefties, allowing a .368 on base percentage, and a walk rate of 16.7%. He faces the New York Mets, and while they will have around 4 lefties in their lineup, none of them are good enough to cause me to fade Phelps. On FanDuel, if you are looking for the safe play I would just go with Luke Weaver and move on, but if you want to pivot off him, Phelps has as much, if not more upside than Weaver, and he will be much lower owned. But on DraftKings a comb of Weaver, and Phelps is a great way to save money for whatever bats you would like.
Jason Hammel – DraftKings: $6,800, FanDuel: $7,700 – Chicago Cubs
This is more of a DraftKings play for me as I prefer either Luke Weaver, or David Phelps over Jason Hammel tonight, but his price is simply too low on DraftKings not to give him some consideration. His home splits are incredible, posting a 1.79 ERA, and a .184 BAA. His matchup is not too tough either against the Pittsburgh Pirates who rank 17th in wRC+, and 22nd in wOBA. Hammel has already faced taken on the Pirates twice this year, winning both contests, while only allowing three earned runs over 11.2 innings. Hammel is not necessarily a guy I always look to in tournaments as he only boasts a strikeout rate of 20.4%, but I just cannot fade him at this price at home.
| Pitchers to Target Hitters Against
Pat Dean – Minnesota Twins
Pat Dean does not have much working in his favor tonight, taking on the Cleveland Indians, on the road, against a team who crushes the ball at home. The Indians will also throw out a mainly right-handed lineup, and Dean has been battered by righties, allowing a wOBA of .410, and a slugging percentage of .595. As for a stack, I am looking to any righty that Cleveland has in the lineup as they all have a great opportunity for a wonderful game tonight.
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!