We only have seven games tonight but the pitching is pretty tough tonight. We have some options so we shouldn’t be at a total loss but the bottom half of the choices are going to be difficult to find many we love. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible so let’s dig into the MLB DFS: DraftKings and FanDuel Pitching 7/4 to find our green screens!
I fully expect Manoah to lead in ownership today as he’s under $9,500 on DK and he gets the Oakland lineup that sits 29th in OPS, wOBA, and wRC+ in addition to dead last in OBP. They are also striking out 23.9% of the time which is sixth-most in the league and should feed Manoah plenty of righties. His K rate isn’t spectacular at 22.7% and he’s been lucky so far with a 2.09 ERA compared to the 3.77 xFIP but hitters can’t make good contact. The hard-hit rate against Manoah is 24.7% (98th percentile) and his slider has a 31.1% whiff rate with only a .208 wOBA allowed. Out of the 399 sliders Manoah has thrown this year, 265 have come when facing a righty and no pitch is over a .293 mark so far. Righty hitters are down to a .194 wOBA and 2.25 FIP and Manoah has managed to get the lefties down to .315 although the 4.81 xFIP remains very high. The salary just isn’t high enough, especially for slate context and he shouldn’t see a lot of lefties anyway.
This is a much more boom/bust matchup because the Mariners have five hitters with a wOBA over .350 against the sinker and that pitch is 62% of the arsenal for Manaea. Seattle is mostly a mid-pack team against lefty pitching and the 3.77 xFIP isn’t terrible to go with a 25.8% K rate. That is something that Manaea could exploit since the Mariners whiff the seventh-most in the league at 23.6% and the 12.7% swinging-strike rate is the best mark of his career. When Manaea does turn to the change or slider, they both have a whiff rate of at least 30.8% and they have 37 strikeouts on the season. The right side of the plate does have a 1.22 WHP but only a 3.63 xFIP and the K rate jumps up to 26.3%. He’s far from the worst option even though I have zero trust in him.
Kyle Wright survived the last game and I don’t think he’s suddenly a bad pitcher but when we look at him since the start of May, the K rate is only at 22%. We’re talking about 68 innings at this point and the 37% K rate through April looks further away with each start. With the Cardinals on deck with their 20.4% K rate, Wright has a difficult path to make it worth his salary.
It should set off alarm bells that Urias is the first man in for this group as he rarely even makes the cut. There are some issues such as the Rockies seeing him twice in a row, the fact his xFIP of 3.91 is higher than the 2.64 ERA, or that he’s capped around 90 pitches. However, getting a team when it comes out of Coors (especially after a week-long homestead) can be hugely helpful for a pitcher. Urias is up to a 23.5% K rate and the hard-hit rate is under 26%, both good signs for him. All of his pitches have a whiff rate of at least 26.3% and the month of June was his best so far. He had a 2.20 ERA, a .234 wOBA allowed, a 30.6% K rate, and a 0.94 HR/9. It may not be realistic for him to keep that up but the salary works and really, the largest issue is this offense is still good when facing a lefty even on the road. They’re top 10 in most categories so we’re hoping that Urias carries the momentum and the Rockies don’t adjust for the first road game in a week.
I’m willing to roll the dice here as Walker pitched better once he got some innings under him n June with 37.2 and that generated a 2.63 ERA, a .252 wOBA, and a K rate over 22%. He’s using a splitter and four-seam mix as around 60% of the arsenal and the splitter has a 30.3% whiff rate and 32 of 52 strikeouts. It’s not the most popular pitch but Cincinnati is only 16th against it and Walker also gets a ground ball rate of 48.9% with a hard-hit rate under 30%. That’s exactly what we want in a park like Cincy as he can keep the ball out of the air and he’s slightly better against the right side of the plate as well with a .249 wOBA and a 2.64 FIP. I’m not sure he’s going to be the largest source of strikeouts but he has a clear path to success.
When a player has a 28.9% K rate as Hunter Greene does, he has to be mentioned but we also need to be careful with where we target him because he struggles in many other aspects of pitching. The largest issue is the Mets may not give him much since they are under 20% for the K rate as a team and they are eighth when facing a fastball, the main culprit for Greene giving up home runs.
This range is mostly barren although I think Johnny Cueto will pick up some steam. He’s been totally fine through his 54 innings so far with a 3.97 xFIP, a 3.33 ERA, and a 20.5% K rate. As much as the Minnesota offense can be baffling to get right, they still rank fifth in wOBA, fourth in wRC+, eighth in ISO, and fifth in OPS against righty pitching. That’s not something that I’m terribly interested in attacking, even with Cueto being solid so far.
Missed The Cut
Chris Flexen – He doesn’t get the toughest matchup with the Padres but any pitcher that has an xFIP over 5.00 with a K rate of 16.1% is not a player I’m looking to get after. It doesn’t help he’s over $8,000 on DK because he’s not even that cheap.
Guardians/Tigers Game Stack
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