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MLB DFS Breakdown (Sunday, Sept. 6): An Abundance of Top Arms

mlb-dfs-picks-september 6-2020

Sunday features a nine-game main slate on DraftKings and FanDuel starting at 1:05pm ET.

Pitchers

Tonight’s slate features four pitchers over the $10,000 mark on FanDuel:

Studs

  • Shane Bieber (R), $11,800, CLE vs. MIL
  • Jacob DeGrom (R), $11,500, NYM vs. PHI
  • Aaron Nola (R), $10,700, PHI @ NYM
  • Tyler Glasnow (R), $10,100, TAM vs. MIA

Only one word comes to mind regarding Shane Bieber’s 2020 season so far: dominant. Averaging 57 FanDuel points per game, Bieber is leading all of baseball with a 1.20 FIP and 84 strikeouts in just 52 innings pitched. As if he needed any more help, his matchup on Sunday could not be better.

The Milwaukee Brewers’ .275 wOBA and 27.3% strikeout rate are both at the bottom of the league, putting him in line for a potential ceiling performance. He’s going to be popular, but the upside is immense. He’s an excellent cash game play, but with three other top arms on the slate as well, there’s a case to be made to look elsewhere in guaranteed prize pools (GPPs) from a game theory perspective.

Jacob DeGrom and Aaron Nola face off against one another in what should be an epic pitcher’s duel in New York. DeGrom has the better matchup of the two, but both teams have actually been pretty good against righties. The Philadelphia Phillies come in with a .332 wOBA against right-handed pitching and a 20.4% strikeout rate, while the New York Mets are collectively hitting to a .346 wOBA and striking out at a 21.5% clip.

Nola scored 55 FanDuel points in his last matchup against the Mets, good for 5.1x his $10,700 salary. DeGrom faces off against the Phillies for the first time year. While he was strong in his only start against them last year (seven innings, 10 strikeouts), this Phillies team is much tougher to contend with.

Both should come in at lower ownership than Bieber and are strong pivots in GPPs.

Tyler Glasnow has the pleasure of taking on a Miami Marlins team that has struggled against right-handed pitching so far this season. Their .302 team wOBA and 25.7% strikeout rate against righties are both good for fifth-worst in baseball. Glasnow has been very strong over his past two outings, collecting 64 and 55 FanDuel points, respectively. He should have no trouble approaching those numbers against the Marlins on Sunday. He’s a strong play in both cash games and GPPs.

Values

Tejay Antone is the epitome of value at just $5,500 on FanDuel. As the swingman on the Reds pitching staff, he hasn’t gone more than 4.1 innings in a start this season, but he has been effective when he’s been out there. His 11.95 K/9 is strong, and his 3.88 FIP over those 20.1 innings is also respectable.

On Sunday, he takes on a Pittsburgh Pirates team ranking dead last in all of baseball against right-handed pitching, hitting to just a .262 wOBA collectively. They are also striking out 25.1% of the time in such matchups. Antone warrants GPP consideration if you’re looking to load up on bats on Sunday.

Fastballs

Patrick Corbin hasn’t quite been the same player we’ve grown accustomed to over the past two seasons, but he gets a solid matchup on Sunday against an Atlanta Braves team that has struggled against southpaws so far (.293 wOBA, 27.1% strikeout rate). His 8.03 K/9 is nearly three full strikeouts less than what he averaged over 2018 and 2019, but the matchup should help bridge that gap in this one. He’s the fifth-most expensive option on the slate on FanDuel, but he has some intriguing upside in GPPs if you’re looking to save some money off of the big four.

Dallas Keuchel takes on a Kansas City Royals team that has been good against left-handed pitching so far, hitting to a .336 wOBA and striking out just 21.6% of the time. He’s been inconsistent so far, with FanDuel totals ranging from 19-46 over his past eight starts. Keuchel’s 5.6 K/9 this season is also career-low, so it’s difficult to see him paying off his $8,600 FanDuel price tag in this one.

Notable Stacks

With the Lineup Builder, it’s easy to incorporate stacks into DFS lineups. Today’s top five-man on DraftKings (per the Bales Model) belongs to the New York Yankees:
• 1. DJ LeMahieu (R)
• 2. Luke Voit (R)
• 3. Aaron Hicks (S)
• 4. Clint Frazier (R)
• 5. Gleyber Torres (R)

Total Salary: $22,400

The Yankees’ lineup is finally starting to look recognizable, and the timing could not be more perfect. On Sunday, they take on Asher Wojciechowski, a righty who has pitched to a 5.76 FIP and allowed 2.3 HR/9 in 31 innings this season.

Gleyber Torres is just returning from an injury and hasn’t really had the chance to get going yet, but he was especially strong against right-handed pitching in 2019, collecting a .352 wOBA and .257 ISO to go along with a 39.2% Hard-hit Rate. He’s a substantial bargain at just $2,800.

DJ LeMahieu has been one of the best hitters in baseball in 2020. He’s been especially strong against righties, collecting a .415 wOBA over 96 plate appearances so far. Luke Voit also has a ridiculous .413 wOBA and .313 ISO against righties so far in 2020. His 156 wRC+ is good for eighth in the American League.

The Yankees’ 5.7 implied team total is second-highest on the slate, so they’ll be popular. With five other teams registering with team totals of 5 or above, however, ownership should be spread out evenly enough to still use them in GPPs.

The Minnesota Twins also rank highly as a four-man stack on FanDuel (per the Bales Model):
• 1. Jorge Polanco (S)
• 2. Josh Donaldson (R)
• 3. Nelson Cruz (R)
• 4. Eddie Rosario (L)

Total Salary: $12,500

The Minnesota Twins also find themselves in an advantageous spot on Sunday against rookie Casey Mize. In three starts so far in 2020, he’s lasted on 10.2 total innings and pitched to a 6.61 FIP while allowing 2.53 HR/9. The rookie will have a tough test on Sunday against this potent Twins lineup.

Nelson Cruz has been great against righties in 2020, hitting to a strong .374 wOBA and .258 ISO in such matchups. Even at an elevated $4,000 price tag, he registers as a 92% bargain rating in this spot.

Josh Donaldson has also been strong against right-handed pitching, collecting a .367 wOBA thus far over 26 plate appearances. While the sample size is small, his 2019 totals of a .381 wOBA and .271 ISO were very strong.

Their 5.5 implied team total is good for fourth on the slate, so they’ll likely come in owned less than they should in this spot. They are a great GPP stack on Sunday.

Other Batters

Alex Verdugo continues to be underpriced on FanDuel at just $2,900. As the projected leadoff hitter, Verdugo has been excellent against left-handed pitching, hitting to a strong .372 wOBA on the season. He gets a matchup against lefty Robby Ray, who has pitched to a 7.08 FIP and allowed 2.62 HR/9.

Yasmani Grandal is also criminally underpriced on Sunday against right Matt Harvey, whose starts have been nothing short of a disaster in 2020. In three starts (and four total appearances), he’s lasted a total of 7.1 innings and recorded a 12.02 FIP. He’s also allowing a ridiculous 5.87 HR/9.

Grandal has posted four hits in his last nine at-bats and has a .327 wOBA on the season against righties. He has a 98% bargain rating as the projected third batter in the White Sox lineup on Sunday.