Hello again everybody, and welcome to today’s MLB Full Count breakdown! I’m nilly and I run the carnage report and DraftKings tiers tools. I also coach NASCAR, so be sure to check us out every weekend over there, too. It’s Friday, so you know what that means: big main slate night! We do have two early games to go over first, but a juicy 13-game main slate awaits us after that. There’s a lot to cover, so let’s get to it!
A look at pitchers
With 13 games on the menu, we have plenty of ways to go. For basic cash game needs, somebody like Burnes could be used if you don’t want to pay up for Strider. For tournaments we have some interesting options, though the more interesting fact may be that we only have four pitchers with KSCOREs above 500 – and you’ll have to pay up for most of them. Smyly is the cheapest of the group, so we’ll see if he can bounce back from his last start. As always be sure to check out the coach’s notes page to see who they are most interested in.
Cincinnati Reds at Miami Marlins
We’ll kick things off with our early games, the first being between the Reds and Marlins. Ashcraft and Perez get the start here, and they look to have a 7.5 total. Perez will have his MLB debut here, so it’ll be interesting to see how that goes for him (and perhaps us).
Reds 5 star plays – none
Reds 4 star plays – India, Fraley
GPP note – They’ll be facing Perez in his MLB debut, so as usual, this is a good place to hedge. The top half of the lineup is hitting for some power against righties.
Marlins 4 star plays – Chisholm/Arraez
Marlins 3.5 star plays – Soler/Gurriel
GPP note – Ashcraft has been on a slide and is allowing good contact and power to righties, so be sure to attack him from that side.
Seattle Mariners at Detroit Tigers
Next up we have the Mariners and Tigers, with Gonzales and Boyd on the hill. We move up to an 8.5 total, and Vegas has this one a little closer than I would have expected. Perhaps they’ll surprise me, but I don’t feel like this one will be quite as close as what they’re calling for.
Mariners 4.5 star plays – Rodriguez
Mariners 3.5 star plays – Hernandez/Kelenic
GPP note – Boyd allows some power to righties, but there’s also some strikeout upside here, so it wouldn’t be a bad idea to hedge here.
Tigers 4 star plays – Baez
Tigers 3.5 star plays – Vierling, Haase
GPP note – There are some cheap bats here hitting for some decent power against lefties, so don’t be afraid to grab some of them to help with ownership at a discount.
New York Mets at Washington Nationals
The Mets and Nationals are up next, with Megill and Gore on the mound. A 9.0 total, this one is fairly close as well as far as Vegas goes, though I think I trust the call here a little more. I do see the Mets taking it in the later innings, as Gore will have a good chance to hold the house steady for a while.
Mets 4.5 star plays – Lindor, Alonso
Mets 3.5 star plays – Pham/Escobar
GPP note – Gore is allowing a good chunk of power to lefties, so you can try your luck with some reverse splits here.
Nationals 4 star plays – Meneses
Nationals 3.5 star plays – Thomas
GPP note – Another reverse splits spot, Megill is allowing good contact to both sides but with much more power to the righties.
Pittsburgh Pirates at Baltimore Orioles
Moving on, next up are the Pirates and Orioles. Oviedo and Bradish will get the start here, and they’ll have an 8.5 total to work with. Vegas has the home team as the favorites here, and while I could see it going either way, it’s nice to see a handful of cheap bats in good spots on both sides.
Pirates 4 star plays – Reynolds/McCutchen
Pirates 3.5 star plays – Hayes, Santana
GPP note – Bradish allows good contact to both side and some extra power to righties, so this could be a good place to go for some lower-owned bats with good upside, thanks to Vegas giving them a low total.
Orioles 4 star plays – Rutschman/Mullins
Orioles 3.5 star plays – Santander/Mountcastle, Henderson
GPP note – Lefties have the power advantage here, though plenty of these bats are hitting righties for some power. You can get creative here and save some salary on some of them.
Tampa Bay Rays at New York Yankees
Fleming and the Tampa bullpen will take on Cole and the Yankees next. As of now I don’t have any insight from Vegas, though this one would be a tough one to call. I could see either side getting a slight advantage, though in the end I think the Rays will squeak this one out if they can limit Cole to just five or six innings of work.
Rays 4 star plays – Arozarena/Franco
Rays 3.5 star plays – Diaz/Ramirez
GPP note – Tough matchup against Cole, but it’s the Rays, so stacking against him and/or hedging is certainly in play.
Yankees 4.5 star plays – Judge
Yankees 3.5 star plays – Rizzo/Torres
GPP note – Fleming allows decent contact and power to both sides and boasts a low strikeout rate, so attacking him and the bullpen is fine here, and you don’t even have to worry about hand matchup.
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Atlanta Braves at Toronto Blue Jays
We next have Strider and the Braves set to take on Bassitt and the Blue Jays, along with an 8.5 total. Vegas likes Atlanta here, and if Strider goes out and does what he’s been doing, it’s hard to argue against that. There will be a few bats that he’ll need to be careful with, but if he can navigate those, I think they’ll take it. For us however, the question will be if he can pay off that enormous salary with some cheaper pitchers in better spots.
Braves 4.5 star plays – Olson, Acuna
Braves 3.5 star plays – Riley, Murphy
GPP note – Though not the ideal matchup, Bassitt does allow plenty of power to lefties, so you can stack here as you normally would.
Blue Jays 5 star plays – none
Blue Jays 3.5 star plays – Guerrero, Springer
GPP note – Lots of strikeout upside here, so contrarian stacks only (or you can hedge if you think they might pose a threat to Strider in his current form).
St Louis Cardinals at Boston Red Sox
We head to Fenway for our next matchup, this one between the Cardinals and Red Sox. Wainwright and Paxton get the start here, and we move up to a 10.5 total. This will be Paxton’s return game, so it’ll be interesting to see how he does. If it goes the way Vegas sees it going, though, it won’t be the prettiest of starts.
Cardinals 4 star plays – Goldschmidt, Arenado
Cardinals 3.5 star plays – Nootbaar/Knizner
GPP note – Paxton will make his return here, and because it’s hard to know where he’ll be, this would be a good spot to hedge.
Red Sox 5 star plays – Devers
Red Sox 4 star plays – Yoshida, Verdugo/Duran
GPP note – In his limited appearances, Wainwright hasn’t allowed much power, but has allowed some xwOBA to lefties, so you could try your luck there.
Los Angeles Angels at Cleveland Guardians
Anderson and the Angels will take on Allen and the Guardians next, as we move back down to an 8.5 total. Vegas likes the home team by just a bit here, which I suppose is fair, but it may just depend on how Allen looks in his second game back and if Anderson can keep his momentum going.
Angels 5 star plays – Trout/Ohtani
Angels 4 star plays – Rendon, Ward/Drury
GPP note – Allen allows plenty of xwOBA to both sides and a lot of power to lefties, so you can either go with the flow with righties or take some lefties along with Ohtani (given they start another lefty besides him).
Guardians 4.5 star plays – Ramirez/Bell
Guardians 3.5 star plays – Rosario
GPP note – Anderson is coming off of a couple of solid outings, so consider hedging here for a punt SP2.
Houston Astros at Chicago White Sox
Our next matchup is between the Astros and White Sox, who will have France and Kopech as the starters. There is a possibility of some weather issues here, so be sure to keep an eye on the skies, because those Houston bats are very temping in this matchup.
Astros 5 star plays – Alvarez
Astros 4 star plays – Bregman, Tucker/Pena
GPP note – Kopech allows good power and contact to both sides of the plate, so you can attack him from either angle here.
White Sox 4 star plays – Robert/Anderson
White Sox 3.5 star plays – Benintendi/Sheets, Vaughn
GPP note – It’s not a great place to hedge, but it could be a decent spot to since the season is still young for France and he may find some bugs along the way.
Kansas City Royals at Milwaukee Brewers
Next up we have Taylor and my Royals takin on Burnes and the Brewers. An 8.5 total, the majority of that is given to the home team, and that’s probably to be expected considering the matchup. I think some of the KC bats could be useful, but I don’t have my hopes too high for them to sneak out a win.
Royals 4 star plays – Perez
Royals 3.5 star plays – Pasquantino/Witt/Melendez
GPP note – Burnes is allowing some pop to righties, and while I probably wouldn’t run full stacks against him, Perez and another bat or two could make for a decent contrarian mini-stack.
Brewers 5 star plays – Yelich
Brewers 4 star plays – Adames/Contreras
GPP note – It’s a bullpen game, so hand doesn’t matter a whole lot. Their implied total is high, so they’ll be a popular choice. Combat that by trying some wrap-around stacks or similar.
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Chicago Cubs at Minnesota Twins
Smyly and the Cubs are up next, and they will face Gray and the Twins. A modest 8.0 total awaits them, and if both pitchers show up, I could see this one going the under quite easily. There’s a small chance of some rain issues, though probably nothing serious, but you would still do well to keep an eye on things as both pitchers will carry some ownership today.
Cubs 4 star plays – Happ/Bellinger
Cubs 3.5 star plays – Wisdom
GPP note – There’s not a ton to love here, so contrarian stacks only.
Twins 4 star plays – Buxton
Twins 3.5 star plays – Gallo/Kepler
GPP note – It’s not a great matchup against Smyly, but he does allow some power to lefties, so you can try to run a bat or two or three against him from there and hope for the best.
Philadelphia Phillies at Colorado Rockies
Up next we have our Coors game, this one between the Phillies and Rockies. Walker and Gomber will be the starters here, along with an 11.5 total. Not much needs to be said here, as you all know the drill: eat the chalk or run your favorite pivots instead.
Phillies 5 star plays – Turner/Harper
Phillies 4 star plays – Castellanos, Marsh/Realmuto
GPP note – Great matchup, great ballpark…lots of chalk.
Rockies 5 star plays – Blackmon, Bryant
Rockies 4 star plays – Cron, Diaz
GPP note – Same as above.
San Francisco Giants at Arizona Diamondbacks
We’ll switch over to our late games next, starting with the Giants and Diamondbacks. Brebbia/Stripling will be the first of the bullpen to get some action, and they’ll face Nelson on the other side. We get a healthy 9.5 total here, with a game mostly split down the middle. I like the Giants to take this one though, as I think they get a bit of a better matchup than what Vegas is claiming.
Giants 4.5 star plays – Pederson
Giants 3.5 star plays – Crawford, Estrada/Davis
GPP note – This is a pretty good matchup for this offense, so be sure to go here to pivot away from or complement your other stacks.
Diamondbacks 4 star plays – Walker
Diamondbacks 3.5 star plays – Gurriel/Marte
GPP note – Same total that the Giants have, though not quite as good of a matchup. You can still go here of course, but I think the other side has a better chance of going off.
Texas Rangers at Oakland Athletics
Next up we have Perez and the Rangers set to take on Waldichuk and the Athletics. An 8.5 total, the visitors are the heavy favorites here, and this is another one that I think is self-explanatory. You can always go contrarian, but sometimes getting too cute works against us.
Rangers 4.5 star plays – Semien/Heim
Rangers 4 star plays – Garcia, Lowe/Jung
GPP note – Great spot for these bats to do some damage, but they won’t be sneaky. You may have to get funky with the cheap bats here or get a little wild with your secondary stacks to help fight some of the ownership.
Athletics 4 star plays – Rooker
Athletics 3.5 star plays – Aguilar
GPP note – Not much love from Vegas, as expected, but Perez is allowing some decent contact with a below average strikeout rate, so a few bats from here wouldn’t be the worst thing you could do today.
San Diego Padres at Los Angeles Dodgers
And finally, we’ll wrap up the day with the Padres and Dodgers. Snell and May will get the start here, and Vegas is giving us a 9.0 total to start with. There are high-ceiling players all over this one, so it’ll be interesting to see who emerges when the dust settles. Unfortunately, you will have to pay up for many of these bats, but at least the pitchers are reasonably priced for the upside they do have. The question will be if they can overcome the tough lineups they face – but that’s what big tournaments are for!
Padres 4.5 star plays – Soto, Machado/Tatis
Padres 3.5 star plays – Bogaerts/Carpenter
GPP note – May has seemingly found some steady ground, but it’s not a bad idea to stack against him because his bad games are really good for his opponent.
Dodgers 5 star plays – Betts/Freeman
Dodgers 4 star plays – Smith/Martinez, Muncy
GPP note – Snell seems to be getting his groove back too, so this could be another good spot to hedge. Righties have the advantage against him.
And that’s going to do it for this one. Thanks for joining me, and be sure to check out the coach’s notes page to see who they are most interested in. Best of luck today!
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