MLB DFS: Brandon Woodruff, Johnny Cueto Top Leverage Pitchers for Tuesday

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Brandon Woodruff heads into Coors Field to take on the Colorado Rockies, propelling him to near the top of the leverage board for tonight’s slate. Overall, Woodruff has had a strong season where we find his expected ERA and FIP hovering in the mid-to-low-3.00 range with a strong strikeout rate approaching 29%. Extended longevity is a bit of a concern with Woodruff, as he only reached the seven-inning mark this season once over 21 starts. We will still safely get five innings, ideally six, but anything more than that pushes it.

Colorado obviously is a much better offense at home than away but lets not like they are some force to be reckoned with. Although they have been on the road a lot recently, over the past two weeks, the Rockies rank in the bottom four in ISO, wOBA, and wRC+ with a strikeout rate of 26.5%. They will undoubtedly see an offensive boost being in Coors, but it is hard to anticipate them just flipping a switch on. Woodruff will be priced at $9,400 on DraftKings with a sub-5% ownership projection. The strikeout upside, in particular, is intriguing as the altitude can’t help limit their 26.5% recent clip, so a higher boost is expected in that category. Ultimately, this play comes with risk but has all the means to pay off.


Johnny Cueto looks to be near the top of the leverage board as he’ll go up against the Seattle Mariners tonight. Cueto has flown under the radar a ton this season as he has put together a sub-3.00 ERA for the White Sox. Is that sub-3.00 valid? Well, his expected ERA skyrockets to near 4.00 while having a real and expected FIP around 4.00 too. His strikeouts are down as his seasonal rate doesn’t even reach 16%. He hasn’t been too vulnerable to power, but it is clear that he is performing way better than he should be. Still, if he is getting it done, he is getting it done!

The Mariners have been swinging their bats well lately amidst a tightly compacted AL Wild Card race. They have a particular power upside as they have a top six ISO ranking over the past two weeks, while their wOBA and wRC+ are in the 19-21 range. We see their Barrel% and Hardhit% are in the bottom half of the league during that stretch, so that we can expect negative power regression rather than increased overall production. Cueto has not stuck out more than five batters in a game since June, so we will rely on a dominant outing of six-plus innings to have a chance to turn optimal. He will not face a juggernaut offense, so if you are comfortable taking the shot on Cueto at an affordable salary with a minimal ownership expectation, there is value there.