Another short Thursday night main-slate is set for tonight in the MLB. The pitching options are thin, with some great stacking options. It is a night for GPP’s, but try to scale back on the amount you play. On short five-game slates, there are no “safe” options and nailing the right full stacks will be the key to taking down tournaments.

Pitchers

Jameson Taillon (PIT): $11,100 @ ATL
The top-priced pitcher on DraftKings this evening is Pirates ace Jameson Taillion. Showing three completely separate outings, his price tag is a little puzzling. Sure the former second overall pick has elite skills and the potential to shut down any batter, anytime. However, his one issue, historically, is dealing with left-handed hitters. Traveling to Philadelphia, he will need to navigate through a tough lineup with a lot of switch-hitters and power lefties. With just nine other pitchers to look at, Taillon should still put up one of the better outings. With the high ownership attached to the Pirates starter though, he is easily fadeable with so much volatility.

Zack Greinke (ARI): $10,600 vs. SF
The Giants are going to be a team we can pick on all season long. Greinke is a proven ace pitcher with elite stuff who can get outs in a lot of different ways. The strikeout rate is up this year to 29.2% while the hard contact rate is down nearly 5%. Paying up for Greinke will be a popular choice this evening, but there is no other SP 1 option with a comparable floor and ceiling. Lock him in with confidence and try to find lower owned hitters during lineup construction.

Eduardo Rodriguez (BOS): $7,300 @ LAA
The last pitcher worth considering tonight is Red Sox starter, Eduardo Rodriguez. Owning a 35.7% strikeout rate through two starts, the 25-year-old has shown impressive upside. The Angels have struggled to put together runs in their last two games against the Sox and will be in tough again tonight. With such a lack of options in the mid and low tier, pairing Rodriguez with one of the top priced pitchers will relive salary for higher priced hitters.

Hitting Stacks

Chalk – High owned stacks

1.) Milwaukee Brewers
With their implied team run total set at 4.99, the Brewers are expected to score the most runs this evening. Vegas lines are not necessarily something I live by when constructing DFS lineups. It is, however, a great tool to use to get a feel for ownership. The Brewers are a solid, power-hitting team who play in an incredible ballpark, facing a terrible lefty. So there is plenty of reason to stack the Brew Crew. With such a short slate though, looking elsewhere might be a better strategy, hoping this game does not see too many home runs.

2.) Boston Red Sox
There should be no need for me to try and sell you on rostering the Red Sox. But I will anyway. In their last eight games, they are averaging 8.25 runs, per game. In those eight games, they saw Shohei Ohtani, Dylan Bundy, Alex Cobb, Sonny Gray, Masahiro Tanaka, and Luis Severino (pretty good pitchers). In 2017, the Sox are ranked first in wOBA, wRC+, ISO, OBP, and SLG. They own a  strikeout rate at just 15.9%, which of course, is ranked first. If you have missed how great the hitters on the Red Sox have been, stop now and roster all of the Boston players you can.

Low Owned Stacks

Atlanta Braves 
With just 10 teams to choose from, there won’t really be any low-owned teams with high-upside to stack. The Braves, however, will come in lower-owned than they should. Hosting the New York Mets, the Braves hitters will take on the infamous Matt Harvey. Once regarded as a top end prospect, the Dark Knight has failed to register a strikeout rate higher than 20% since 2015. The big news in this game is whether or not Freddie Freeman will start. After being hit by a pitch, Freeman could potentially sit this one out. If he does not play, I am more interested in the Braves. This will lower ownership dramatically. Harvey is not a pitcher to be scared of any Atlanta has plenty of other attractive hitters in this lineup. If Freeman is in the lineup, a Braves stack should come in as the third highest owned team stack.

Arizona Diamondbacks
By now, the general consensus should have moved on from the D-Backs. Scoring just 13 runs in their last four games, Arizona has not lived up to the hype of an offensive team. With better obvious options to look at tonight, Arizona should go overlooked on the small slate. Paul Goldschmidt always needs to be considered when facing a left-handed pitcher and should be breaking out soon with his elite power. Vegas does like Arizona, but I don’t think the public will follow suit. They might be more of a mini-stack option, considering the top of the order only, but I think they can score some runs against Ty Blach.

Position-by-position

Catcher
Jett Bandy $2,900 vs. MIA
Andrew Knapp $2,900 vs. PIT
Kurt Suzuki $2,800 vs. NYM

First Base
Freddie Freeman $5,100 vs. NYM
Paul Goldschmidt $5,000 vs. SF
Hanley Ramirez $4,600 @ LAA
Ryan Braun $4,500 vs. MIA
Mitch Moreland $3,200 @ LAA
Justin Bour $3,000 @ MIL

Second Base
Ozzie Albies $4,300 vs. NYM
Asdrubal Cabrera $4,000 @ ATL
Eduardo Nunez $3,800 @ LAA
Ketel Marte $3,300 vs. SF
Hernan Perez $3,000 vs. MIA

Third Base
Todd Frazier $4,100 @ ATL
Scott Kingery $4,000 vs. PIT
Rafael Devers $3,700 @ LAA
Colin Moran $3,300 @ PHI
Daniel Descalso $2,900 vs. SF

Shortstop
Dansby Swanson $3,300 vs. NYM
Orlando Arcia $2,900 vs. MIA

Outfield 
Mookie Betts $5,400 @ LAA
Michael Conforto $4,800 @ ATL
Rhys Hoskins $4,800 vs. PIT
A.J. Pollock $4,700 vs. SF
J.D. Martinez $4,500 @ LAA
Andrew Benintendi $4,300 @ LAA
Lorenzo Cain $4,000 vs. MIA
Domingo Santana $3,000 vs. MIA

 

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