After an off day due to some power difficulties, we’re back in action with MLB DFS: Starting Rotation 8.24 and it is a LOADED slate for just seven games. I’m interested in at least half the pitchers on the slate and that’s just the ones I really like. That doesn’t mention ones I could build a case for. Let’s start digging in and see what directions we can take our builds for Monday.
Both pitchers were laid out in Picks and Pivots so check that out to read up on why they are such strong options tonight!
Pitch Data – FB – 7th CT – 21st CB – 28th CH – 26th
Past the fastball, this is a strong pitch data matchup for Kelly. Even then, he only throws it 46% of the time which is on the lower side for a starter. The Rockies continue to be a poor offense on the road, with a top 10 K rate to boot. They are no higher than 25th in OPS, OBP, wOBA or wRC+. On top of that, they are dead last in ISO on the road to RHP. Kelly has some upside in this spot and he feels mighty safe for his price.
Pitch Data – FB – 23rd SL – 26th CH – 27th
This spot is great for Maeda for his three main pitches, so a big tick for him right off the bat. I didn’t exactly think we’d be targeting the Cleveland offense all that much, but they have flopped pretty majorly thus far. They rank in the top 12 for K rate to RHP and are just a bad offensive team. The Indians are no higher than 24th in average, slugging, OPS, ISO, wOBA or wRC+.
Maeda has a K rate that’s approaching 29% and a fly ball rate of just 27.6%. Couple that with a 26.3% ground ball rate and we can see why Maeda has a 2.27 ERA and a 2.46 FIP. One of the biggest shifts is Minnesota letting the leash off him. He’s made it through at least six innings in four of five starts. That’s a massive shift from his Dodger days. His price is still very fair and I don’t believe he gets blown up.
Pitch Data – FB – 25th SL – 30th CH – 19th
It’s been a mixed bag for fantasy production from Luzardo so far. He’s got two starts below 10 DK, one in the negative points and then three above 18. That’s the definition of a GPP play but the pitch data is certainly in his favor tonight, as is the price. Luzardo is whiffing 23.9% of the hitters he’s facing with only a 25% fly ball rate.
The young lefty also gets a great matchup for strikeout upside since the Rangers are sixth in K rate to LHP at 26.1%. Additionally they are bottom 10 in every major offensive category we value. This could be a repeat of his last game where he scored 28.1 DK points and he would smash value in that scenario.
Pitch Data – FB – 20th SL – 18th
Keller is not my normal GPP pick, but the price is awfully low for a pitcher averaging over 20 DK in his first three starts. Now, he’s yet to give up an earned run so it’s painfully obvious that some type of regression will get to him. To wit, the xFIP is at 4.32. That’s not exceptionally bad but that’s a massive difference as well. The K-BB% isn’t my favorite at just 10.6% but St. Louis could help here.
They are a top 10 team in K rate at 24.8% and are 27th in hard hit rate at just 38.4%. The only team with a lower ISO is the Pirates, and that’s not where you want to be. I worry if Keller gives up some runs because he doesn’t have a ton of strikeouts to fall back on. Through 436 plate appearances, they only have 51 total runs vs RHP so Keller is worth a shot at such a low price.
Pitch Data – FB – 11th SL – 29th CB – 6th SF – 15th
So we obviously need to approach the pitch dat with caution. Mize only has 4.1 IP at the major league level, so grain of salt and all that. On 19 splitters in the first start, he got a 31% whiff rate so it’s definitely going to be a big weapon for him. The Cubs have some good pieces, but are down Kris Bryant right now. They are also second in the league in K rate to RHP at 29.1%.
Make no mistake, Chicago could do some damage here. They are a top 10 offense pretty much across the board. Mize gave up three earned in the first start but it was interesting to see the FIP and xFIP at 2.93 and 1.29. He likely pitched a little better than the line suggests. Five strong innings with another 6-8 strikeouts is within reach and worth a gamble.
Let’s get it tonight my friends!
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