The Red Sox and the Cubs are the stacks of the day in the early slate while the Dodgers/Cardinals game is a secondary stack against the homer-prone Scott Kazmir is the place to find your nighttime starting pitcher. Sprinkle in a middle infield Mariner, an Indian throwing darts and a guy with White Sox on his jersey and you’ve got yourself the Picks of the Day.
Anthony Rizzo, Cubs – $10,000 vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
A day game at Wrigley Field is how baseball is meant to be played. Rizzo has batted .350 with an OPS of 1.317 and three home runs versus Pirates pitcher Jeff Locke in his career. The Cubs are scorching hot and you should be stacking them huge in the morning slate, starting with Rizzo and finishing with Ben Zobrist (9,600), Dexter Fowler ($9,900), and Kris Bryant (9,300). I’m going with the slugging Rizzo as my primary option, but Kris Bryant is a close second. Also, in Rizzo’s favor, is that the wind is expected to be blowing out to right field, almost guaranteeing he launches at least one home run with a chance for an enormous day.
Robinson Cano, Mariners – $10,000 vs. LA Angels
Cano is on a tear, slugging three home runs while batting .357 with an OPS of 1.107 in his last six games. He faces right-handed Jhoulys Chacin, who has allowed four home runs in five starts and an ERA of 5.40. Stacking in Coors is always productive, but if you want an infielder batting in normal air then Cano is your man on the evening schedule
Jackie Bradley Jr., Red Sox – $7,600 vs. Houston Astros
These picks are made based purely on performance, but JBJ has been both extremely productive (16 hits in 28 at bats, four home runs and three doubles, 16 RBIs, .571 batting average, and 1.679 OPS) and remarkably affordable over the past seven games. Bradley faces Houston Astros Collin McHugh who has allowed four earned runs or more in four of seven starts to go along with five home runs this season. The Red Sox and the Astros are both great stack plays today and Bradley has been on an MVP type tear.
Matt Holliday, Cardinals – $7,200 vs. LA Dodgers
Holliday is another affordable outfielder that has been on a hot streak of late. He has hit three home runs with a 1.183 OPS in his previous six games and he faces Scott Kazmir, who has allowed nine home runs in seven starts. The Cardinals are a secondary stack in the night slate because of the match up and the fact that they lead baseball in home runs and Holliday is swinging the big bat of the bunch.
Corey Kluber, Indians – $22,200 vs. Minnesota Twins
Kluber is coming off a rough outing against the slugging Astros, but today he faces the much lighter slugging Minnesota Twins who rank 28th in runs scored, 22nd in home runs, 26th in OPS and ninth in strikeouts with just fewer than nine per game. Kluber has averaged a strikeout per inning and has a Whip of 1.07. Seven or eight innings, eight or nine strikeouts and a win are a strong possibility, ranking Kluber at the top of a strong day slate of starting pitching options.
Jose Quintana, White Sox – $20,400 vs. NY Yankees
The day schedule is loaded with viable, high-end starting pitchers, but I decided to save a few bucks and lean towards the better match ups over aces like Jake Arrieta ($24,400) and Stephen Strasburg ($25,200). The Yankees are a heavily left handed lineup and Quintana has held lefties to a .167 batting average and .392 OPS, 11 strikeouts and zero home runs in 48 plate appearances in 2016. The Yankees also rank 25th in runs scored and 27th in OPS. Quintana also neutralizes the short right field porch.
Carlos Martinez, Cardinals – $18,800 vs. LA Dodgers
The Dodgers rank 22nd in OPS and 13th in runs scored while Dodger stadium ranks last in runs scored. Martinez has a .98 Whip and 2.61 ERA with 30 strikeouts in 38 innings pitched and has pitched at least six innings in all but his most recent start against the Pirates. The evening schedule isn’t as crowded with star options at starting pitcher, but Martinez has the upside, the match up and the park factors to throw up a nice number of points tonight. I also suggest that you stack against homer prone opponent Scott Kazmir, which suggests to me that a win is also in the cards for St Louis.