DraftKings MLB: Thursday Breakdown

DraftKings MLB: Thursday Breakdown

This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.

Nothing makes you feel like you are in the home stretch of the MLB season quite like the trade deadline. We have reached that point now. On Thursday, there are eight evening games on the slate, the first starting at 7:05 p.m. EDT. Ready for your DFS recommendations? So am I!

Pitching

Johnny Cueto, CWS at TEX ($8,700): I didn't expect it, but Cueto has made it through at least five innings in every one of his outings and he has a 2.86 ERA. His FIP is admittedly 4.19, but his 1.70 ERA on the road counterbalances that to me. Speaking of counterbalancing, the Rangers are middling in runs scored, but have a team OBP barely over .300, making them feel pretty all or nothing.

Noah Syndergaard, PHI vs. WAS ($7,600): Syndergaard is slotting right into a starting spot after being dealt from the Angels to the Phillies. He should get more offensive support now, moving from a team in the bottom 10 in runs scored to the top 10. The Nationals are in the bottom five in runs scored, and if I recall correctly I think something happened recently that impacted their lineup going forward.

Jeffrey Springs, TAM at DET ($7,100): Springs' move to the rotation was going well at first, though he's allowed a few crooked numbers recently. That being said, he still has a 2.70 ERA on the season. More importantly, the Tigers are last in runs scored by a comfortable margin, making this a good matchup to get back on track.

Top Targets

I mentioned the Rangers have an all-or-nothing offense, and that speaks to Kyle Schwarber ($5,300) as well. He barely has stayed above the Mendoza Line, but he's slugged .495 and hit 33 home runs. Versus righties, he has an .894 OPS since 2020. Since moving from the bullpen to the rotation, Paolo Espino has a 4.95 ERA. He's also allowed 1.74 home runs per nine innings in his career.

Though Matt Olson ($5,100) has 21 home runs after hitting 39 last year, he's hit 35 doubles already, which ties his personal best. That's allowed him to still slug .491, and against righties he's slugged .540. The southpaw will face Carlos Carrasco, who has been strong over his last three starts, but has a 3.79 ERA on the season, and he has a career 3.86 ERA as well. Not such a good matchup I want to stack Braves, but I will take Olson with the lefty-versus-righty matchup.

Bargain Bats

There was a moment when Seiya Suzuki ($4,400) seemed like the favorite to win the NL Rookie of the Year, but then he got hurt and was sort of forgotten. However, the rookie still has hit .256 with eight home runs and five stolen bases in 64 games. That includes a .784 OPS versus lefties. Jose Quintana has been a surprise this year, posting a 3.50 ERA with the Pirates before being dealt. When he was a Pirate, though, Quintana had a 5.22 ERA on the road, and he isn't pitching his home games in Pittsburgh anymore. The lefty also has allowed righties to hit .260 against him.

David Peralta ($3,200) was dealt from the Diamondbacks to the Rays, playing into Tampa's affinity for platoon guys. Versus righties, the lefty hitter has an .811 OPS this year, and a .770 OPS since 2020. Drew Hutchinson, who left his last start with an ankle issue but is going to be back on the mound Thursday, has a 4.53 ERA this year and a 4.93 ERA in his career.

Stacks to Consider

Red Sox at Royals (Kris Bubic): Tommy Pham ($4,900), Xander Bogaerts ($4,600), J.D. Martinez ($4,300)

Bubic has never put up good numbers in his career, but 2022 has been his worst campaign yet. He has a 5.45 ERA and a 5.18 FIP, both career highs. At home, his ERA soars to 6.32. The lefty has been getting knocked around since the first time he took the mound for the Royals, and that makes him a nice option for a stack.

Pham was dealt at the deadline, and he's slotted into a starting spot for the Red Sox already. He has 11 home runs, seven stolen bases, and an .834 OPS against southpaws. Bogaerts has hit .312 this year, making it seems likely he hits .300 for the third time in four seasons. Additionally, since 2020 he has a .909 OPS versus lefties. Martinez was surprisingly not dealt, so his .284/.350/.454 slash line is staying with the Red Sox for now. His OPS versus southpaws this year is a robust 1.062 as well.

White Sox at Rangers (Glenn Otto): Andrew Vaughn ($5,000), Jose Abreu ($4,900), Eloy Jimenez ($4,300)

Well, when you post a 9.26 ERA as a rookie, a 5.50 ERA in your sophomore season almost feels like progress. Of course, his home ERA is 7.39 so, you know, less progress there. The White Sox don't really have any robust lefty bats, but Otto has let his fellow righties hit .315 against him, so that's not really a concern.

Vaughn has excelled on the road, as he has a.910 OPS in away games. The Cal alum also has a .920 OPS over the last three weeks. Abreu is hitting .302 with a hefty .382 OBP. The Cuban has been killer on the road as well, even better than Vaughn, posting an 1.005 OPS in those matchups. Since returning from injury Jimenez has been white hot, notching an 1.105 OPS. While he's been bad on the road this year, the sample size is only a handful of games. He had an .846 OPS on the road in 2021 so I am not too concerned.

Astros at Guardians (Zach Plesac): Yordan Alvarez ($5,900), Alex Bregman ($4,800), Kyle Tucker ($4,500)

Plesac's 4.33 ERA is perfectly mediocre, but over his last four starts he has a 6.75 ERA. On top of that, lefties have hit .290 against him on the year, so I have two southpaws involved in this stack to take advantage of that.

To be fair, Alvarez takes advantages of basically every pitcher he faces. He's slashed .303/.409/.655 with 30 home runs. Since 2020, his OPS versus, lefties, righties, at home, or on the road is above .900 in each and every scenario. Bregman actually has reverse splits this year, with an .877 OPS versus righties. Plus, he has an .831 OPS over the last 14 days. Tucker isn't as elite as his teammate, but he has 16 stolen bases to go with 19 home runs. He also has an .882 OPS on the road.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Chris Morgan plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: cmorgan3, DraftKings: cmorgan3.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Morgan
Chris Morgan is a writer of sports, pop culture, and humor articles, a book author, a podcaster, and a fan of all Detroit sports teams.
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