MLB DFS 5/13

We have a new page where the sims will update throughout the day.

You can find it here, the link will be the same every day (for bookmarking purposes), and all the tables are pre-sorted for you.

Pitchers with the highest optimal probabilities: Max Scherzer, Gerrit Cole

Max Scherzer is arguably the most consistent ace in baseball and regularly finds himself at the top of the DFS board every outing he pitches. Scherzer has not been particularly lights-out over his last two starts as he allowed a combined seven earned runs, but we know that does not last too long with Scherzer. Seattle has posted a top seven wRC+ over the season despite middle-of-the-pack standings in ISO and wOBA, suggesting that they have had a little bit of luck. Scherzer is due for a gem, given his recent performances, and Seattle doesn’t have the overly imposing offense to make Scherzer’s high salary too much of a risk.

Gerrit Cole has been rock solid as of late, only surrendering a single run over his last three starts and picking up double-digit strikeouts in his most recent outing. The White Sox are in a three-way tie for the lowest strikeout percentage on the season, but their bottom ten rankings in wOBA, ISO, and wRC+ simultaneously prove that their offense can’t get anything going. Maybe the Yankees 15 spot the other night sparks a fire under the White Sox offense. However, Cole is not the ideal guy to face when trying to kickstart an offensive groove. The numbers prove that the White Sox have not been productive on offense, so taking Cole will likely be money well spent.

Pitchers seeing the most leverage: Yu Darvish, Framber Valdez, Kyle Gibson

Yu Darvish has already started against the Braves, allowing only a single run while striking out eight, which was his highest single-game total of the season. Strikeouts have not been on Darvish’s side as he is striking out batters at the lowest mark of his career at 20.4%. His next lowest was his rookie season at 27.1%. Darvish has been pitching well despite an outlier game crushing his ERA and FIP, so the leverage we are seeing with him could be of great value. Atlanta strikes out the third-most in the league, so given his April performance against the Braves, we could see some vintage Darvish strikeout numbers.

Like Darvish, Framber Valdez currently is not seeing the strikeout production that is on par with his career numbers, but he does not have the consistency to suggest that he can turn it around. Luckily, the Washington Nationals are horrific and only have Juan Soto saving them from reaching the Cincinnati Reds’ level of irrelevance. This game might not be the one for Valdez to get an uptick in his strikeout production as Washington strikes out at the fourth-lowest rate in the MLB. However, Valdez has been limiting power well, only allowing a lone home run this season while opponents have a 33.0% HardHit% against him, so Washington’s lack of power could feed into what Valdez does best.

The Dodgers’ highly productive offense with low strike-out numbers does not necessarily bode well for Kyle Gibson, who by no means is going to overpower his opponents outright. He works counts well and will be able to limit offensive explosions and will hopefully eclipse five strikeouts to give us some added DFS value. We project him under 2% owned, which is very enticing, but he will cost you $8,400 on DraftKings and does not have a high enough ceiling to take a risk against the high-powered Dodgers’ offense.

STACK IT UP

Stack optimal probabilities are calculated using the top 6 projected hitters for each team. Team cost is the average cost of that team’s top six optimal probability players.

Team stacks with the highest optimal probabilities: Twins, Royals, Yankees

The Twins by no means have a dominating offense on a nightly basis, but their top position on the stack board is an indictment of how bad Aaron Civale has been perceived this season. His 9.45 ERA is an eyesore, but his xERA and xFIP are still under 5.00, indicating that Civale has had several bad breaks. There is still value with the Twins as they have been above average in the batter’s box while being a reasonably affordable stack that will not see crazy ownership. Still, the numbers suggest that Civale could be due to turn it around soon enough, so this might not be the spot to hammer Minnesota.

Kansas City will be heading to Coors tonight to face Kyle Freeland, which has them as the stack projected to see the highest ownership. Freeland is a serviceable pitcher, but the Royals have not been an offense worthy of high ownership despite visiting batter-friendly Coors Field. On the season, they rank in the bottom two in wOBA, ISO, wRC+, and runs scored while sporting the third-worst batting average. Playing in Colorado will help the offense a little, but how much will it matter? It is hard to imagine it would be enough to warrant some of the highest ownership on the slate.

The Yankees have been incredible on offense this season and enter fresh off of dropping 15 runs on the White Sox last night. New York is littered with talent from the top of the order to the bottom. They’ll face lefty Dallas Keuchel tonight, which favors their dominant right-handed lineup. The Yankees are second in wOBA and wRC+ and third in ISO, so they have proven to be a safe stack and should be treated as such.

Team stacks seeing the most leverage: Red Sox, Phillies, Angels

Boston has been one of, if not the most disappointing teams this season. Their offense has been near the bottom of the league all year despite having some marquee names that drive up the average salary of the Red Sox stack. Their opponent, Dane Dunning, has pitched well as of late, including holding the Yankees to one run over six innings in his most recent start. If you do not expect a repeat performance for Dunning against a lesser offense in the Red Sox, then the minimal ownership could provide significant value.

It is no secret that the Phillies have been built to pile up runs, which has not been on full display thus far this season. Marquee hitters including Bryce Harper, Nick Castellanos, and Kyle Schwarber are desirable on any slate. Still, Walker Buehler on the bump for the Dodgers has driven down the Phillies’ ownership giving us the leverage we’re seeing. Philadelphia has top five positions in ISO, wOBA, and HardHit%, so if you are already going into tonight expecting to fade Buehler, it makes sense to grab the low ownership expected to be attached to the Phillies tonight.

It looks like the Angels have finally put it together in the Mike Trout era while trotting out arguably the league’s most potent offense. Ranking first in wOBA and wRC+ on the season and second in ISO has also resulted in the Angels’ players not coming cheap to DFS players. If you are saving salary in other spots of your lineups tonight, coughing up the extra salary required to play some of the available Angels has been worth it this season and could continue to be against a pretty mediocre opponent in Daulton Jefferies.