Welcome to MLB DFS Bargains. We’ll split the analysis into three groups: very cheap, mid-tier, and expensive. A greater emphasis will be placed on the lower end of the price scale.
Please note, these player picks were organized early in the day. For MLB contests, always check lineups and weather closer to game time. Rain, wind, or unexpected managerial decisions could open up additional sources of value. Be sure to keep an eye on the MLB Headlines and Injuries desk.
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Most of the action today is scattered around the afternoon. We’ll focus our attention on the six-game main slate kicking off at 7:05pm ET.
DIRT CHEAP BARGAINS
Dallas Keuchel – SP – Atlanta Braves (vs Mets)
I enjoy when I can make meaty bargain recommendations. You know, the type of player who can carry your roster despite a cheap price. Like Aristides Aquino all of last week. Keuchel is not one of those recommendations. In fact, there is no such bargain expected to start tonight. Keuchel is cheap and projects to perform passably. The Mets offense is heavily right-handed which takes away Keuchel’s lone sellable attribute. While I’d probably avoid Michael Conforto, a Mets stack is a plausible choice. Our interest in Keuchel relates entirely to potential for a long outing. He’s thrown at least seven innings in four of 10 starts.
Ryan O’Hearn – 1B – Kansas City Royals (vs Dakota Hudson)
Pick your poison. Do you prefer a 20 percent chance for a home run coupled with a high strikeout rate or a punchless high contact ground ball hitter? Or will you find room for both of these lesser lights. O’Hearn at least has one positive factor on his side. Although he’s turned into a ground ball hitter in a small sample this season, he was a fly ball guy as recently as last season. Hudson is an extreme ground ball pitcher with a home run problem. There really isn’t a good reason to use Lopez beyond his price tag. In both cases, these are cheap players who project to do just enough to be among the best dollar-for-dollar values. Just don’t expect good production.
Jackson has allowed 3.38 HR/9 this season. End transmission.
Of course, it’s necessary to point out that Crawford isn’t much of a power threat. He only has something like a one-in-nine chance to homer. Instead, you’re hoping his plate discipline adds up to a pile of walks and runs scored opposite Jackson and a bad Tigers bullpen. As such, Crawford is best used as part of a Mariners stack.
MID-TIER MUST PLAYS
Now here’s somebody who could launch a homer or three against Jackson and friends. Vogelbach is among the top projected hitters this evening despite a recent slump. Of course, ignoring slumps is a feature of projection systems, but it’s something us DFSers have to take seriously. I’ve found no surface-level evidence of an injury or newly discovered exploitable weakness. Therefore, I’m more than comfortable with using the Mariners cleanup hitter in a juicy matchup. Beware: Jackson actually pitched decently in his Tigers debut last week. The Seattle offense is among the worst in the league.
HIGH PRICED VALUES
Clayton Kershaw – Los Angeles Dodgers (at Marlins)
Kershaw isn’t cheap, nor is he especially price efficient. However, in this particular slate, he features a highly attractive combination of floor and ceiling. He’s yet to throw fewer than six innings in an outing this season. He’ll very likely continue the streak versus a bad Miami offense. Lately, he’s buffed his strikeout rate to above 9.00 K/9. And in a year when even the best pitchers are allowing home runs, he’s coughed up only 1.04 HR/9. If there’s a downside, it’s that the Dodgers are handling him very carefully this year. While his consistently supplied at least six frames, he’s also yet to throw more than seven.