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Daily Fantasy Baseball Strategy: July 2, 2015

Good afternoon folks! Welcome to another edition of Daily Fantasy Baseball Strategy. If you’re just tuning in for the first time, take notice that below I’ve included a discussion of the night slate at DraftKings. The discussion includes a look at tonight’s pitching options, the best teams to stack from as well as a set of individual player rankings.

If you haven’t signed up at DraftKings yet, be sure to use the link!


As of right now, it appears the only game with any chance of rain is the game between the Twins and Royals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City. The initial forecast shows just chances of thunderstorms, but make sure to monitor the situation closely.

Pitching Perspective

Mad Max Scherzer. End section. That wouldn’t be worth your time, but it’s about all the insight you need. Scherzer has been some kind of other worldly in his last three starts and gets a solid matchup with a Freddie Freeman-less Braves lineup. I’ve touched on picking on the Braves in the past. Their lineup doesn’t have a whole lot of fire power, but they don’t really strike out too often. But with Scherzer’s strikeout upside and his run prevention ability, he’s the top option.

DraftKings is a two pitcher site though, so you’ll have to pair someone with him (if you decide to pay up for him). The next best option on the slate is Scott Kazmir. Kazmir gets a matchup with the primarily left-handed Seattle Mariners at his spacious home park in Oakland. The Mariners as a team are in the bottom six in the league in wRC+ and they are in the top five in the league in strikeout percentage. That’s a solid mix for any pitcher taking the mound, and particularly someone like Kazmir. Kazmir has been pretty solid this year posting a 8.45 K/9, but he’s been bitten by his command. He’s more than $5,000 less than Scherzer, and is probably the most feasible top option tonight.

Aside from Kazmir, Tyson Ross is the next affordable pitching option for cash games. I’ve mentioned Ross a lot this year, as guys that get a lot of groundballs and strike out a lot of hitters are golden for DFS. The problem Ross will be dealing with tomorrow is a pesky St. Louis Cardinals team. The Cardinals are near the middle of the pack in terms of strikeouts, which is a slight dip to Ross’ value, but with a lack of top options, he has to be near the top of your list tomorrow. He’s flirting with a 62% ground ball rate.

The last potential option on the slate requires hinging on the recent success of Yovani Gallardo. Gallardo is no longer the pitcher he was when with the Brewers a few years ago, but of late he’s been pitching really well. The difficulty on using Gallardo is his strikeout rate is well down and he’s putting nearly three free baserunners on every nine innings via the walk. Couple this with the fact that he has a matchup with a tough Baltimore team in a good park, and he’s a scary, GPP only option for me.

Stack Options

A lot of people were burned badly by the Blue Jays dud against Eduardo Rodriguez earlier this week. I’m going back to them against southpaw Wade Miley. The Blue Jays have such a great offense for DFS purposes. Their top four are all capable of being the best at their respective positions and they have a ton of firepower.

Josh Donaldson has some of the best splits in the game against left-handed hitters and should be the top 3rd basemen on the board tonight. But Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion are not too far behind in the hitters model.

The Red Sox side of this offense also sees a left-hander, but their lineup as a whole has a whole lot less to offer. Hanley Ramirez is a great tournament option, especially at a shallow position and same goes for teammate Xander Bogaerts given a good lineup spot. Mike Napoli makes very little contact, but what contact he does make at the Rogers Centre might be loud. This is a great tournament team tonight.

Chris Rusin and Jeremy Hellickson are the arms going at Chase Field. That smells like runs to me. The Diamondbacks are set up to destroy left-handed pitching with the help of Yasmany Tomas, AJ Pollock and Paul Goldschmidt. All three have shown great skills against southpaws and should have no problem touching up Rusin. If Nick Ahmed stays at the top of the order, he also becomes a good salary relief option at the shallow shortstop position.

The Rockies are typically non-existent on the road, but Chase Field is a nice alternative to Coors. Jeremy Hellickson has struggled against left-handers, and with the home run ball in particular this season, yielding 1.40 HR/9 this year. I wouldn’t stray too far past the Rockies top-5, but their lineup is in use for both cash games and tournaments. Try not to forget that Troy Tulowitzki possesses elite skills against both right-handers and left-handers, he’s a great option at shortstop.

Last but not least, you can go back to the well at Camden Yards. If you’re exposing yourself to Yovani Gallardo in tournaments, look to pick on him with Baltimore bats. Baltimore can put together a pretty deep lineup and they play in a great ballpark for offense.

The Rangers on the other hand don’t have as deep a lineup, but get to face the less skilled pitcher in this game. Gausman has electric stuff, but he’s been a frequent target in DFS for a while now. Mitch Moreland has been scorching hot, and Prince Fielder has had a bounce back year. Both are nice, powerful options against Gausman.

Player Rankings


1. Matt Wieters-$3,800 – Baltimore Orioles

2. Russell Martin -$3,900 – Toronto Blue Jays

3. Wellington Castillo -$3,300 – Arizona Diamondbacks

First Basemen

1. Paul Goldschmidt -$6,000 – Arizona Diamondbacks

2. Edwin Encarnacion -$4,400 – Toronto Blue Jays

3. Prince Fielder -$4,500 – Texas Rangers

Second Basemen

1. Jimmy Paredes -$4,100 – Baltimore Orioles

2. DJ LeMahieu -$3,700 – Colorado Rockies

3. Devon Travis– $3,600 – Toronto Blue Jays


1. Nick Ahmed -$3,300 – Arizona Diamondbacks

2. Troy Tulowitzki -$5,400 – Colorado Rockies

3. Hanley Ramirez -$4,900 – Boston Red Sox

Third Basemen

1. Josh Donaldson -$5,200 – Toronto Blue Jays

2. Manny Machado -$4,700 – Baltimore Orioles

3. Yasmany Tomas -$4,200 – Arizona Diamondbacks


1. AJ Pollock -$4,500 – Arizona Diamondbacks

2. Charlie Blackmon -$4,600 – Colorado Rockies

3. Jose Bautista -$5,100 – Toronto Blue Jays

4. Carlos Gonzalez -$4,200 – Colorado Rockies

Starting Pitchers

1. Max Scherzer -$14,500 – Washington Nationals

2. Scott Kazmir -$9,200 – Oakland Athletics

3. Tyson Ross -$9,700 – San Diego Padres

4. Roenas Elias -$7,000 – Seattle Mariners

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