Starting Nine 8/29/17
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.
Chris Sale – The top-tier option seems easy tonight. One of the best pitchers in baseball is on the mound against the Toronto Blue Jays who can swing and miss a ton if they’re not patient. The projected lineup is almost and all right-handed hitting lineup which Sale strikes out at 37%. He has been dominant against righties this season and is actually his preferred handedness to face. Guys like Bautista, Morales, Lopez, and Goins all showcase high strikeout rates to begin with, and shouldn’t get any better with Sale on the mound. He’s had a few rough starts in a row, but this is a perfect team to get back on track against. I love Sale tonight in all game types, as I think it’s still possible to fit good bats in.
Mike Fiers – Mike Fiers comes in as my favorite SP2 so far. He’s not playing in Minute Maid, this game is actually in Tropicana Field, a park that favors pitchers greatly and should feel the same to Fiers as this is a dome. He gets a Texas team that swings and misses a ton against righties (5th in K% vs. R), and Fiers himself strikes out right-handed hitting at almost 25%. When he gets hit, he does get hit hard, but Tropicana should help him in that regard just a bit. He’s at the same price level as Weaver who I expect to be more popular and has just as much upside. There are three Rangers approaching 30% k-rates in this lineup and that’s not counting Odor who’s at 25%. Mike Fiers has the ability to go six innings, pick up a strikeout per, and be in line for the win. I think he makes a great SP2 option.
Jaime Garcia – I’m not sure how much of Garcia I’ll have exactly, but he’s the only sub $6k I’m willing to think about. In tournaments, I’d love to have a few lineups where I load up on bats and pay down at pitching, and Garcia is the only one that lets me do that. This is a price play only as I hate targeting against Cleveland and even less in this park. A few mistakes and Garcia could be drawing dead. What he does have going for him though is that this Cleveland team isn’t as potent as they were early in the season. Outside of Ramirez, this team isn’t swinging a good bat and Garcia could take advantage of that. Even with his struggles, Garcia lives in the double-digits when it comes to swinging-strike rate.
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!