The MLB Breakdown offers data-driven analysis using the FantasyLabs Tools and predictive metrics to highlight notable players.
Sunday’s main slate features eight games starting at 1:35 p.m. ET to close out another late-summer weekend of baseball as teams start to make their push toward the postseason. Keep an eye on the weather in Detroit, Pittsburgh and Atlanta, which all have the possibility of rain.
MLB DFS Pitching Picks
MLB DFS Stud Picks
Shohei Ohtani ($10,500) Los Angeles Angels (-198) at Detroit Tigers
Los Angeles Angels ace Shohei Ohtani looks to be in an ideal spot Sunday against a Detroit Tigers lineup with a three-implied-run total. Priced at a sky-high $10,500 on DraftKings, Ohtani jumps to the top of our Player Model. A generational talent, Ohtani has made 20 starts this season, posting a 10-7 record, 2.69 ERA, 35% K rate, and 1.06 WHIP. Further, Ohtani has five or more strikeouts in each of his last nine starts and should make easy work of a Tigers lineup with a 0.275 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a .290 wOBA.
Look for Ohtani to be an easy and popular choice at SP1 on Sunday.
Brandon Woodruff ($10,000) Milwaukee Brewers (NA) at Chicago Cubs
A part of the feared Milwaukee Brewers’ starting rotation, pitcher Brandon Woodruff should be an easy play at SP1 on Sunday against the National League Central rival Chicago Cubs. This season, the Cubs have struggled at the plate with a 0.279 strikeout-per-at-bat average, which is among the highest on the slate. Woodruff has continued his dominance this season, starting in 18 games and posting a 9-3 record with a 3.53 ERA, 29.2% K rate, and 1.15 WHIP — all elite numbers, and he’ll likely make easy work as a top-tier SP1 with a high strikeout and win-bonus upside.
A spend-down option from Ohtani, Woodruff should be able to provide a floor for lineups.
MLB DFS Value Picks
Mike Minor ($5,500) Cincinnati Reds (+102) at Pittsburgh Pirates
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Mike Minor projects as one of the top values on the slate Sunday, priced at $5,500 on DraftKings and facing a strikeout-prone Pittsburgh Pirates lineup. Despite a high 4.5-implied-run total, the Pirates have a 0.284 strikeout-per-at-bat average, which is the highest on the slate. That should signal fantasy viability for Minor, given his extremely low salary on DraftKings and high strikeout upside. By no means is Minor a safe play, and he has appeared at times to have struggled, making 13 starts this season and posting a 1-10 record with a 6.31 ERA, 18.6% K rate, and 1.61 WHIP. Combined with the weather in Pittsburgh, Minor is a risky option who could certainly unlock higher-priced stacks on the slate.
MLB DFS GPP Picks
Charlie Morton ($8,600) Atlanta Braves (-149) vs. Houston Astros
Atlanta Braves ace Charlie Morton looks to be an excellent GPP option at SP1 and should come in at lower ownership while also projecting for one of the highest ceilings on the slate. Making 23 starts this season, Morton continues to be a consistent arm in the majors, posting a 6-5 record with a 4.04 ERA, 28.4% K rate, and 1.18 WHIP. However, Morton faces a hyper-disciplined Houston Astros lineup with a 0.201 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a .343 wOBA, both of which lead the slate. Even with the 3.7-implied-run total, Morton certainly can reach an 85th-percentile outcome with huge strikeout upside, as he’s recorded at least five strikeouts in his last 14 starts.
Morton should be considered a viable option at SP1 and warrants a second look.
MLB DFS Hitters
With the Lineup Builder, it’s easy to incorporate stacks into DFS rosters.
Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can use our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 150 lineups.
The top DraftKings stack in the FantasyLabs MLB Player Model, when generated by median projection, belongs to the Philadelphia Phillies:
- J.T. Realmuto (4) ($5,500)
- Rhys Hoskins (2) ($4,400)
- Alec Bohm (3) ($4,100)
- Nick Castellanos (5) ($4,000)
- Kyle Schwarber (1) ($5,900)
Implied for 4.5 runs, one of the highest totals on the slate, the tough Philadelphia Phillies look to be a top stack option Sunday and are in a prime position to generate runs against Taijuan Walker and the New York Mets. The Phillies are full of power at the top of the order, posting a 0.254 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a .310 wOBA, and they face a starting pitcher in Walker who has a 3.36 ERA in 21 starts with an 18.4% K rate and 1.20 WHIP.
As previously mentioned, I prefer a hyper-correlated 1-2-3-4-5 stack when loading up bats on DraftKings. This Phillies stack comes at an expensive $23,900 price tag and may limit options at secondary stacks or top-tier pitching.
Top Stacking Pick from THE BAT X
One of the top DraftKings stacks from THE BAT, when generated by projected ceiling, belongs to the Atlanta Braves:
The Braves’ top-of-the-order stack projects for one of the highest ceilings, according to THE BAT. Priced at a similar $23,100 on DraftKings to the Phillies, the Braves’ powerful offense gets a matchup against Houston Astros pitcher Jose Urquidy with a 4.5-implied-run total. The Braves are disciplined at the plate, posting a 0.258 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a .345 wOBA and look to be a nuisance for Urquidy, who in 22 starts has an 11-4 record with a 3.69 ERA, 18% K rate, and 1.14 WHIP.
Expect the runs to come in bulk from this lineup as a pivot from a popular Phillies lineup.
Other MLB DFS Hitter Picks
Byron Buxton OF ($6,200 DraftKings, $3,600 FanDuel) Minnesota Twins vs. Texas Rangers (Kohei Arihara)
Removing the Phillies and Braves in search of possible one-off plays, Minnesota Twins outfielder Byron Buxton has the highest rating in our model on DraftKings. Buxton should be a popular option Sunday against pitcher Kohei Arihara of the Rangers. Projected to bat third, Buxton should kickstart the Twins’ offense, which is implied for 5.1 runs, the highest on the slate. Look for the Twins star to be a great one-off option Sunday, even with a $6,200 price tag on DraftKings.
Pete Alonso 1B ($5,200 DraftKings, $3,900 FanDuel) New York Mets at Philadelphia Phillies (Kyle Gibson)
If we’re talking about ceiling outcomes, New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso should be in the conversation Sunday, as he is projected for one of the highest ceilings. Facing pitcher Kyle Gibson should be no easy feat, as he has an 8-5 record with a 4.30 ERA in 23 starts. Alonso, however, is slashing .271/.349/.521 with 30 home runs, and he’s an easy choice for a ceiling outcome with home-run upside.
Michael Chavis 1B ($2,000 DraftKings, $2,400 FanDuel) Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Cincinnati Reds (Mike Minor)
When looking for value, Michael Chavis jumps to the top with the highest projected Plus/Minus. Chavis, at the minimum price tag on DraftKings, is slashing .246/.278/.417 with 12 home runs. Pittsburgh has an implied total of 4.5 runs, and Chavis — who is projected to bat cleanup — should have an ideal outing in a matchup with a high implied total, which should also open up rosters to more expensive pitching options.