MLB DFS Main Slate Advice | Picks, Stacks, Strategy Projections Today Aug. 18th| Fanduel Draftkings

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Welcome to another year of the DFS Army MLB Full Count! You have to start your research somewhere, and oftentimes going game by game and breaking down every matchup and its key players is the first step in our process. My name is Mike aka @MadnessDFS on Twitter, make sure to give me a follow as I’ll occasionally make updates to the advice in the article out on Twitter as well as inside our coaching forums.  With that said, let’s get it started!

Full Slate Breakdown Picks for MLB DFS 8/18:

USATSI

Aug 26, 2020; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) pitches in the first inning against the Miami Marlins at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

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Early MLB Slate Player Projections and Stacks:

Colorado Rockies (+205) @ St. Louis Cardinals (-250)

Implied Run Totals:

Rockies – 3.0 IRT

Cardinals – 4.7 IRT

Rundown:

We’ll open up the early slate with Antonio Senzatela heading into St. Louis to take on this Cardinals lineup. He has a 4.67 ERA on the season and an xERA of 5.22, so things could be even worse for him, not to mention an extremely low 12.9% strikeout rate. I don’t see a reason to get to him on this slate. The Cardinals will send Adam Wainwright to the mound who is coming off of a nine-inning start against the Brewers. He’ll be in play as an SP2 at this price tag and has at least 30 DraftKings points in two of his last four games.

COL 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Charlie Blackmon, CJ Cron

GPP Note: I don’t see a reason to get too crazy against Waino here.

STL 5-star plays: Paul Goldschmidt, Nolan Arenado

4-star plays: Nolan Gorman, Paul DeJong, Lars Nootbar

GPP Note: The Cards look great here against a weak pitcher.


Oakland Athletics (+165) @ Texas Rangers (-200)

Implied Run Totals:

Athletics – 3.6 IRT

Rangers – 5.1 IRT

Rundown:

The A’s will send Zach Logue to the mound who struggled in this matchup last time out where he went 2.1 innings and gave up four earned runs. He’s another guy with a low strikeout rate and an xERA of 5.83 which is about .35 points higher than his ERA. I don’t see a need to get to him here either. The Rangers will start Dane Dunning in a great matchup with the A’s. Dunning has been extremely volatile this season with some command issues, but I do think he’s in play on DraftKings as an SP2 option strictly due to the matchup.

OAK 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Sean Murphy, Shea Langeliers

GPP Note: There are a couple of one-off bats I like, but that’s about it.

TEX 5-star plays: Marcus Semien, Adolis Garcia

4-star plays: Corey Seager, Nate Lowe, Jonah Heim

GPP Note: The Rangers look great on the early slate.


Los Angeles Dodgers (-112) @ Milwaukee Brewers (-104)

Implied Run Totals:

Dodgers – 3.9 IRT

Brewers – 3.8 IRT

Rundown:

Andrew Heaney will get the start for the Dodgers as they close out a series with Milwaukee. Heaney is generally a pretty boom or bust guy but we haven’t really seen that since he returned from injury. That said, he hasn’t thrown over 81 pitches in any of his four starts and we know how careful Dave Roberts likes to be with his arms, so he won’t be a guy I get too much here. Corbin Burnes will get the start on the other side of the game and even though the Dodgers matchup stinks, I have no issue going right back to him here. He has a 32.3% strikeout rate on the season and is pretty easily the top pitcher on this early slate.

LAD 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Trea Turner, Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman

GPP Note: I don’t want to get too crazy against Burnes.

MIL 5-star plays: Keston Hiura

4-star plays: Christian Yelich, Willy Adames, Andrew McCutchen

GPP Note: I do think the Brewers could be sneaky in GPPs and hope we get one of those Heaney blow-up games.

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Houston Astros (-134) @ Chicago White Sox (+115)

Implied Run Totals:

Astros – 4.6 IRT

White Sox – 4.1 IRT

Rundown:

Luis Garcia will get the start for the Astros on the road here in Chicago. He hasn’t exactly been great as of late with some command struggles but due to the pitching options on this early slate, he’ll be firmly in play as he and the Astros come in as favorites. Chicago will send Lucas Giolito to the mound in a tough matchup with Houston. I’m sure he’s going to be a guy the public flocks to in this price range on DraftKings with at least 20.4 DraftKings points in two of his last three games which makes him look like a nice SP2 option. I do think he’s in play for FanDuel as well in tournaments due to a 25.8% strikeout rate on the season.

HOU 5-star plays: Yordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker

4-star plays: Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Jeremy Pena

GPP Note: Houston looks solid here if you want to get some leverage on those Giolito lineups.

CHW 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Eloy Jimenez, Jose Abreu, AJ Pollock, Andrew Vaughn

GPP Note: Garcia hasn’t been great lately, but I’m still not sure how much I want to stack against him.


Chicago Cubs (+135) @ Baltimore Orioles (-155)

Implied Run Totals:

Cubs – 4.1 IRT

Orioles – 5.1 IRT

Rundown:

The Cubs will send Adrian Sampson to the mound in a tougher matchup with this pesky Baltimore lineup even though the park looks good for pitching. I don’t really see myself getting too much Sampson here, he’s not exactly a great DFS guy. Spenser Watkins will start for Baltimore and is a guy that has shown flashes of good pitching but is coming off of a rough start last time out against the Rays. I don’t mind getting some exposure to him as an SP2 on DraftKings for tournaments, but that’s about it and it won’t be a ton of exposure either.

CHC 5-star plays: Willson Contreras

4-star plays: Ian Happ, Nick Madrigal

GPP Note: More of a mini-stack team due to the ballpark.

BAL 5-star plays: Cedric Mullins

4-star plays: Adley Rutschman, Ryan Mountcastle, Anthony Santander, Terrin Vavra

GPP Note: I like the Orioles in this spot.


Arizona Diamondbacks (+125) @ San Francisco Giants (-148)

Implied Run Totals:

Diamondbacks – 3.3 IRT

Giants – 3.9 IRT

Rundown:

The Dbacks will send Zac Gallen to the mound as he’ll take on this Giants lineup. Gallen has been really good with at least 49 FanDuel points in three of his last five games and this Giants lineup doesn’t exactly scare me, so he’ll look like a solid option in all formats here. I’m expecting a pitching duel with not a whole lot of interest in bats with Logan Webb on the other side of this one. Webb is another guy that has been great coming off of a 60-point FanDuel start against the Pirates last time out. I like going right back to the well with him here against the Dbacks who will likely be without Ketel Marte in the middle of that lineup again.

ARI 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Daulton Varsho, Josh Rojas, Alek Thomas, Carson Kelly

GPP Note: Probably just one-offs here for me against Webb.

SFG 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Joc Pederson, Brandon Belt, Brandon Crawford

GPP Note: Same deal here, just one-offs against Gallen.

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Main MLB Slate Player Projections and Stacks:

Boston Red Sox (-160) @ Pittsburgh Pirates (+135)

Implied Run Totals:

Red Sox – 4.8 IRT

Pirates – 3.9 IRT

Rundown:

Onto the main slate where Josh Winckowski will get the start in a nice matchup with the Pirates. Even though the matchup is great, I don’t think I’ll see myself getting a ton of him here. He has a 13.9% strikeout rate on the season which makes it tough for me to like him. Maybe… as an SP2 paired with deGrom on DraftKings but that’s about it. The Pirates will send JT Brubaker to the mound and is a guy that can be really volatile and this Red Sox lineup has some firepower, so another guy I don’t see myself getting to.

BOS 5-star plays: Rafael Devers

4-star plays: JD Martinez, Tommy Pham, Xander Bogaerts

GPP Note: I don’t mind a Boston stack here, but hate the ballpark in Pittsburgh.

PIT 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Oneil Cruz, Bryan Reynolds

GPP Note: I’d lean to a mini-stack with these guys with raw talent, I don’t think it’s a good enough lineup to fully stack.


Toronto Blue Jays (+125) @ New York Yankees (-145)

Implied Run Totals:

Blue Jays – 4.0 IRT

Yankees – 4.7 IRT

Rundown:

Jose Berrios will get the start for the Jays in a tough matchup as he heads into Yankees Stadium against a tough lineup. He hasn’t been in great form either with negative FanDuel points in back-to-back games giving up a combined 13 earned runs in those two games. I’d leave him for tournaments in this one. Frankie Montas will start on the other side of this one and is in a similar situation, this Jays team can hit some home runs and Yankees Stadium will only help that. Montas hasn’t been great since joining the Yankees either.

TOR 5-star plays: Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

4-star plays: George Springer, Alejandro Kirk, Matt Chapman, Teoscar Hernandez, Bo Bichette

GPP Note: I have no issue attacking Montas and this struggling Yankees team.

NYY 5-star plays: Aaron Judge

4-star plays: Anthony Rizzo, Gleyber Torres, DJ LeMahieu

GPP Note: Same deal here, I’m not all that afraid of Berrios right now.


Kansas City Royals (+185) @ Tampa Bay Rays (-227)

Implied Run Totals:

Royals – 2.9 IRT

Rays – 4.6 IRT

Rundown:

The Royals will send Carlos Hernandez to the mound in a tougher matchup with the Rays but I do like the ballpark for pitching. Hernandez is not good with a 9.08 ERA on the season to go along with a low 12% strikeout rate, he won’t be a guy I’m interested in at all here. The Rays will send Shane McClanahan to the mound who has struggled as of late being held under 20 DraftKings points in three straight games, but it will be hard not to like him in this one. He has an elite 32.2% strikeout rate on the season and this Royals lineup isn’t very good, he’ll contend with deGrom as the top spend-up option on the slate.

KCR 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Bobby Witt Jr., Salvador Perez, MJ Melendez

GPP Note: Just one-offs if you think McClanahan continues to struggle.

TBR 5-star plays: Brandon Lowe, Randy Arozarena

4-star plays: David Peralta, Ji-Man Choi

GPP Note: I like the Rays against Hernandez here.


New York Mets (-120) @ Atlanta Braves (+104)

Implied Run Totals:

Mets – 3.7 IRT

Braves – 3.5 IRT

Rundown:

Jacob deGrom will start for the Mets in a tougher matchup with the Braves, but deGrom has proved to be matchup-proof this season. In his three starts this season, he has at least 35 DraftKings points in two of them to go along with a 50% strikeout rate… yes, 50%. I’m going to get to him as much as I can regardless of the matchup. The Braves will try and battle him with Max Fried who gets a tough matchup as well with this Mets lineup. Fried is returning from the concussion list here and should be a full go, I don’t hate him here, but is a better real-life pitcher than a DFS pitcher.

NYM 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Starling Marte, Francisco Lindor, Pete Alonso

GPP Note: I don’t like stacking against Fried.

ATL 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Ronald Acuna Jr., Austin Riley

GPP Note: Yeah no thanks against deGrom.


Washington Nationals (+315) @ San Diego Padres (-400)

Implied Run Totals:

Nationals – 2.7 IRT

Padres – 5.5 IRT

Rundown:

We’ll round out the day of baseball with Anibal Sanchez taking the mound for the Nats in a tough matchup on the road in San Diego. Sanchez has not been good with a 7.20 ERA on the season and this Padres offense should be able to capitalize against him. Meanwhile, the Padres will send Yu Darvish to the mound in an elite matchup with this Nats lineup that sent them Josh Bell and Juan Soto. Darvish and the Padres come in as massive -400 favorites here so the win equity is huge to go along with a 25% strikeout rate on the season, he’s a great option in all formats.

WAS 5-star plays: None

4-star plays: Luke Voit

GPP Note: This lineup is not good.

SDP 5-star plays: Juan Soto, Manny Machado

4-star plays: Jurickson Profar, Brandon Drury, Josh Bell

GPP Note: The Padres are a top stack on the main slate.


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