Starting Nine 8/15/17

The data displayed will be from the start of this 2017 season. I like displaying this information on one page so I can see which pitchers have the most strikeout opportunities on a given night. We know strikeouts are huge in MLB DFS and looking at this information as lineups come out help me pinpoint which pitchers have the best matchups. With this info in front of us, here are the pitchers I think are in the best spots tonight.

Alex Wood – If I’m paying tonight, Alex Wood will be my guy. Wood had been struggling his prior starts and caused concern in many baseball fans as his velocity was down and was performing like he was earlier this season. If you didn’t catch the news, Wood made a mechanical adjustment before last start and was able to fix his velocity issues. He was able to garner a 15% swinging-strike rate last game and returned to his previous form while handing Greinke his first home loss this season. To me, Alex Wood is back to his old way and this time he’ll be at home against a White Sox team who strikes out as much as any team in the league. He should face an abundance of right-handed hitters in this lineup which he’s struck out 28% on the season. The floor and upside are clearly there for Wood tonight and I love him for all game types.

Dinelson Lamet – There is no doubt that this guy is here to stay. Not only has he been phenomenal at home this season, but recently his arsenal looks great. Prior to last start, he had eight straight starts of double-digit swinging-strike rates. The whiffs were clearly there and his fantasy performances showed that. This time around he’ll face the Phillies which have been ice cold the entire season and couldn’t hit Travis Wood yesterday. He’s been elite against right-handed hitting (34% K%), so guys like Hoskins, Franco, Joseph, and Rupp should all be at a disadvantage. I also love that he gets a pitcher in this lineup which can be huge for a pitcher with control problems. If he can get by the top three lefties in the lineup, he should do well and have tons of upside in tournaments.

Kyle Hendricks – This is a tournament play only as Hendricks hasn’t proved much this season. At $7,700 on DraftKings, I feel that’s too cheap for a guy that can go seven innings, strikeout six, and be firmly in line for a win. Hendricks has a floor in the 15-point range which he’s lived in all season, but against the Reds, he has the upside for 20+. He should face a good dose of left-handed hitting including Votto which is the hottest hitter in baseball, but that actually works in Hendricks’ favor. He’s been much better against lefties this season, and predictably so considering his best offerings are his changeup and sinker. Hendricks has struck out 22% of lefties while limiting them to a .298 wOBA and still has a pitcher to work against. I feel he’s way too cheap for the upside he can bring in any given start. Tournaments only.

Feel free to message me on Twitter (@MLora) with any questions regarding todays slate. I will confirm these plays and more on the Deeper Dive later today. I’ll also be in the premium slack chat answering questions leading up to lock. Till next time, party animals!

Starting Nine 8-15-17