This is my favorite article of the week and I can’t tell you just how much I love writing about pitching in DFS. This really feels like my forte and it’s evident by my Monkey Knife Fight results. Over my last 19 suggestions, I’m currently 13-6. We have another pick for you today and we’re going to look to keep the ball rolling.
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Cash Game Pitcher of the Day
Jose Berrios, MIN at CWS
DK ($10,800) FD ($10,500)
Berrios is the definition of a cash game play, as he’s truly developed into a guy with an extremely high floor. That’s evident by the fact that he’s pitched at least 5.2 innings in all but one start this season while scoring at least 27 FD points all but twice. Consistency is all you can ask for from your cash game pitcher and that’s this dude’s middle name. Berrios comes into this matchup rolling too, pitching to a 1.98 ERA and 0.98 WHIP over his last six starts. Facing Chicago is a treat as well, with the White Sox ranked 24th in K rate, 25th in runs scored and 23rd in wOBA.
Mike Clevinger, CLE at BAL
DK ($9,600) FD ($9,400)
Clevinger was slightly disappointing in his return from the IL but it’s hard to argue with this guy’s numbers. Dating back to last season, Clevinger is providing a 2.99 ERA and 1.12 WHIP. What’s really impressive about him is the fact that he’s recorded 29 Ks across 16.2 innings this season, which is simply one of the best rates in the Majors. Getting to face Baltimore should only help those gaudy numbers, with the Orioles sitting 19th in K rate, 26th in wOBA, 27th in runs scored and last in xwOBA. Look for this guy to become a five-figure player on both of these DFS sites before you know it.
Merrill Kelly, ARI at SF
DK ($9,100) FD ($8,600)
Even these numbers surprised me from Kelly, as he’s been superb throughout the month. Aside from one dud against the Rockies, Kelly has allowed two runs or fewer in five of his last six starts. Even with that one stinker, Kelly is still pitching to a 2.36 ERA and 0.82 WHIP over his last five games, striking out 32 batters across 34 innings of action. That form would make him intriguing pretty much anywhere but getting to pitch in San Francisco is simply amazing for DFS purposes. Not only is Oracle Park arguably the best pitcher’s park in the Majors, the Giants currently rank 27th in xwOBA, 28th in runs scored and 29th in both wOBA and OPS.
Anibal Sanchez, ATL at DET
DK ($7,400) FD ($8,400)
This is more about playing against Detroit than it is about Sanchez. This team is simply the best matchup in baseball right now and it’s worth throwing out any pitcher against them. That’s evident by the fact that the Tigers rank 26th in OPS, 28th in OPS, 29th in wOBA and last in both runs scored and K rate. That says a lot about the Motor City Kitties, as their roar has really turned into more of a purr. Sanchez has actually been really solid the last two years too, pitching to a 3.24 ERA and 1.17 WHIP since the beginning of last season.
Vince Velasquez, PHI at MIA
DK ($7,000) FD ($7,300)
This is one guy I can never seemingly get right for DFS but I’ve absolutely loved him ever since he pitched a complete game shutout against the Padres, striking out 16 batters a few years back. The stuff this guy possesses is absolutely filthy and it’s just a matter of time before he finds some consistency. Facing Miami is a good way to kick start a hot stretch, with the Marlins ranking 18th in K rate, 29th in wOBA and last in OPS, xwOBA and runs scored. Getting to pitch in Marlins Park is huge too, with that ballpark ranking as the best pitcher’s parks in the Majors. That was crystal clear when Velasquez allowed just one hit against Miami in his most recent start on June 22.
Fade of the Day
Hyun Jin-Ryu, LAD at COL
DK ($8,900) FD ($8,500)
I rarely do this but it’s something that needs to be said. People will look at Ryu’s ridiculous 1.27 ERA and 0.84 WHIP and automatically click the + next to his name but that’d be a big mistake. It’s no doubt that this guy has been nails all season long but this is not a spot to succeed at this price for DFS purposes.
Pitching at Coors Field is an absolute nightmare, especially for a contact pitcher. The 1.612 park factor for Coors Field is half a run higher than anywhere else in baseball, as that park has surrendered the most runs in the league by a significant margin. That’s really no surprise considering its history and that’s a scary thought for a guy with a 22 percent career K rate and a SIERA due for some negative regression. Ryu has never pitched well at Coors either, pitching to a 7.56 ERA and 2.28 WHIP in four starts there.
Monkey Knife Fight Pick of the Day
Our MKF plays have been absolutely killing it recently and it’s truly become our favorite DFS site. A 13-6 record speaks for itself but there’s really only one pick I like today.
Mike Clevinger Over 6.5 Strikeouts
This is really the only play that caught my eye, as Clevinger has a decent chance at reaching double-digit Ks. Not only does he face a Baltimore team who ranks 19th in K rate and last in xwOBA, Clevinger is also one of the league leaders with a 47 percent K rate. That number is bloated because of a small sample size but his 26.3 percent K rate between 2017-18 is impressive nonetheless.
I've been playing fantasy sports since I was 12, which means I've been playing for over half of my life. I love DFS and season-long formats and have been writing for nearly a decade. I started my writing career at RotoWire and currently write for FantasyPros, Rotoballer, Razzball and DFSR. I cover NBA, MLB and NFL and follow all major sports. I generally cover primarily DFS but I also do game previews, recaps, player write-ups, injury updates etc.