Thursday’s main slate features four games on FanDuel starting at 7:05 pm ET. DraftKings has a similar main slate featuring five games starting 25 minutes earlier. We will be using Bales Model to highlight some of the top options to consider.
The four pitchers projected to score the most fantasy points today are:
- Aaron Nola, PHI (R)
- Lance McCullers Jr., HOU (R)
- Alex Cobb, LAA (R)
- Steven Matz, TOR (L)
The highest-rated pitcher on Bales Model for both DraftKings and FanDuel is Aaron Nola from the Philadelphia Phillies. Although his record is 8-8 and ERA is 4.48, Nola has been stellar on the mound in his last two outings. Over a combined 11 innings, Nola has allowed only nine hits and four earned runs while striking out 19.
Out of all pitchers on this slate tonight, Nola has the highest K/9 (10.69) and is considered a 71% bargain on DraftKings. Nola’s 211 strikeouts is good for seventh in all of baseball and he is looking to increase that total tonight against the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pirates are projected for the lowest implied runs total on the slate (3.2 runs).
The highest-priced pitcher on the main slate tonight is Lance McCullers Jr. from the Houston Astros. In 150 1/3 innings, McCullers has a 3.11 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 176 strikeouts and a 12-4 record. He is currently running a streak of three consecutive quality starts, during which he has 22 strikeouts in 18 innings.
Today, he has a tough task as he will be on the hill pitching against the Los Angeles Angels who are projected for an implied runs total of 3.8 runs and 68 team value rating. Their rating and projected run totals are fairly high for being the largest home underdog on the slate (+150).
On the opposite side of the diamond from McCullers will be Alex Cobb from the Los Angeles Angels. Cobb has been very impressive in his last five outings, collecting three wins with 26 strikeouts and only allowing three earned runs. For a team eight games below .500, Cobb’s 8-3 record is a strong point.
In what looks to be a pitching duel, the Angels will hope for Cobb to match or outlast McCullers as both pitchers are viable options today even with the tough matchups at hand. My only concern with Cobb is how hot the Astros hitters have been. In their last four games, they have scored a combined 36 runs.
Like Cobb, Steven Matz from the Toronto Blue Jays has won three of his last five starts and has been quite effective. In 140 2/3 innings, Matz has a 3.84 ERA, 1.32 WHIP, 133 strikeouts and a 13-7 record. He collected the win two starts ago despite allowing five earned runs against the Baltimore Orioles. Matz is a strong play to consider today as he will be on the hill against the Minnesota Twins. Last time out against Minnesota, Matz allowed two earned runs over 5 2/3 innings while striking out five.
On a smaller slate, it is even more important to look for possible value at the pitching position. One pitcher who stands out high above the rest is Glenn Otto from the Texas Rangers. Otto has struggled in his last two starts but does have a very favorable matchup today against the Baltimore Orioles. Not only do the Orioles have the worst record in MLB (48-104), but also, they rank 27th in runs for (625).
Today’s top projected points stack comes to you from the -135 Toronto Blue Jays:
- George Springer (R)
- Vladimir Guerrero Jr (R)
- Bo Bichette (R)
- Teoscar Hernandez (R)
The Blue Jays are projected for the second-highest implied runs total on the slate today (5.2 runs). Having a four-game road trip near the end of the season is never an easy task, however playing the Twins in the four-game series might be just what the doctor ordered. In the three meetings earlier this season the Blue Jays scored a total of 14 runs. On FanDuel, this stack will cost you $15.9K and is projected for a combined 47.6 fantasy points.
The highest-rated batter on Bales Model today for FanDuel today is Odubel Herrera from the Philadelphia Phillies. I would like to mention briefly that this is the only game with possible weather concerns. If the game plays as scheduled, the Phillies and Herrera are projected for the highest implied runs total on the slate.
Finally, here is a handful of batters to consider while completing your lineups today that are projected for a high fantasy points/salary:
- Jean Segura
- Brad Miller
- Bryce Harper
- Nick Solak
- Max Kepler
After this piece is published, FantasyLabs is likely to provide news updates on a number of players. Be sure to stay ahead of your competition with our industry-leading DFS-focused news blurbs.
Photo Credit: G Fiume/Getty Images
Pictured: Aaron Nola