Dee-al With It

Quietly, Gerrit Cole has struggled against left-handers this year and is extremely easy to run on so Dee Gordon could be in a nice spot to string together a solid performance. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s MLB.

Infield:

Robinson Cano, Mariners, $9,200 – Good luck to gas can Kyle Gibson squaring off against a red-hot Mariners team. Heading into Wednesday night, the Mariners were slashing .341/.409/.532 so far this month with a .401 wOBA, 159 wRC+ and .191 ISO. In fact, only the Tigers had posted a superior wOBA and now the team will face an opposing pitcher who has yielded a .396-plus wOBA to each side of the plate this year. Against lefties specifically, Gibson has been roasted to the tune of a .413 wOBA, 10.0-percent BB rate, 1.66 HR/9, .337/.410/.562 slash line, 39.5-percent hard hit rate and 38.2-percent fly ball rate while only striking out 13.0-percent. Meanwhile, Robinson Cano is up to his usual tricks this season against RHP: .385 wOBA, .246 ISO, .306/.376/.552 slash line and 37.5-percent hard hit rate. The Mariners continuously go overlooked due to their extremely pitcher-friendly home park but they have done nothing but produce as of late. Once again, fire up the entire stack, beginning with Cano.

Dee Gordon, Marlins, $8,000 – If not paying close attention, it is easy to miss the fact Gerrit Cole has been one of the easiest pitchers to run on as opposing base stealers have successfully stolen nine bases in 10 attempts against him. Additionally, Pirates catcher Francisco Cervelli has allowed the most steals against him of any catcher in the league this year so this a fantastic speed matchup for Marlins leadoff hitter Dee Gordon. Furthermore, lefties have enjoyed a fair amount of success against Cole this season; they have produced a .367 wOBA, 2.45 HR/9 rate, .276/.308/.572 slash line, 42.2-percent hard hit rate and 39.0-percent fly ball rate. All Gordon needs to do is get on base and this could become a monster performance in no time.

Outfield:

Seth Smith, Orioles, $6,900 – Seth Smith is a talented hitter against right-handers but he has enjoyed a ridiculous string of excellent matchups as of late. The latest features Smith stepping into the box against a struggling RHP that has surrendered a .431 wOBA, 3.07 HR/9 rate, .338/.386/.646 slash line, 40.8-percent hard hit rate and 34.0-percent fly ball rate to LHHs in 2017 thus far. Typically, probable starter Joe Ross at least is able to slow down hitters of the right-handed variety but he has been downright dreadful to this point regardless of handedness. On the other hand, Smith sports a .334 wOBA against RHP this year including a .417/.462/.917 slash line over the last week (and .564 wOBA during that span). Roster him while he is hot because he draws one of the best possible matchups on tonight’s slate and is priced way too cheaply.

Ben Gamel, Mariners, $6,800 – One Mariners hitter is not enough against the aforementioned Gibson as the Mariners are being implied to score 4.8 runs in this spot. Assuming Nelson Cruz suits up, the total should only shoot up even higher and compete for the highest on the slate. With Jean Segura on the disabled list, Ben Gamel has been leading off as of late against righties and there is no reason to believe that trend will not continue. Although Gamel recently struggled through a rough week or so patch, his overall numbers still look good (and he has picked it back up as of late): .391 wOBA, .340/.429/.466 slash line, 32.0-percent hard hit rate and 37.8-percent fly ball rate. The Mariners usuals all draw such fantastic individual matchups, so even if they do not score double-digit runs, guys like Cano and Gamel should still produce admirably.

Pitchers:

Lance McCullers Jr., Astros, $21,600 – On tonight’s slate, Lance McCullers Jr. stands out as above and beyond the top pitching option and one that needs to be locked in as a lineup’s SP1 in all formats. McCullers will face a Royals lineup that has swung at the highest rate outside the zone of any team in the league and McCullers has induced a 31.0-percent swing rate outside the zone (21st highest of any qualified starting pitcher). Although the Royals do not strike out at a massive rate (20.3-percent), McCullers also has forced opponents into a 61.7-percent ground ball (GB) rate and limited them to a 25.0-percent hard hit rate. When McCullers faced the Royals earlier in the year, he struck out 10 over 7.0 IP while allowing three runs and six total baserunners. Expect a similarly dominant outing this go-around from a guy emerging as a true ace this season.

Jake Odorizzi, Rays, $15,300 – Over the course of the last two days, Chris Archer and Jacob Faria both have tossed gems at home against the White Sox and now it is Jake Odorizzi’s turn. Since the start of the 2015 season, Odorizzi has been lights out: .220/.280/.384 slash line, .287 wOBA and a 23.1-percent K rate. As evident by the last few nights, the White Sox are not a great offense against RHP. In total, they rank in the bottom 10 of wOBA, wRC+, ISO, BB rate, AVG, OBP and hard hit rate against the handedness and have struck out at a 22.1-percent rate (12th highest rate) versus RHP. Do not be afraid to go back to the well of Rays right-handers and enjoy the last rung of the trifecta.

Tyler Chatwood, Rockies, $14,400 – If looking to differentiate, or if a staunch believer in home/road splits, Tyler Chatwood makes a fair degree of sense. Despite allowing a .386 wOBA in the hitters’ haven of Coors Field this year, Chatwood has limited opponents to a .168/.255/.350 slash line a .264 wOBA on the road. After winning the World Series last year, the Cubs offense has been nothing short of a disappointment as they rank in the bottom 10 of wOBA, wRC+, AVG, OBP, SLG, hard hit rate and line drive rate against righties this year. If looking for a fair degree of salary relief with some potential upside, look no further than the Rockies’ right-hander.

*Stats are accurate as of Wednesday, June 7

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders is a fantasy sports expert with over 15 years of playing experience. After starting several freelance fantasy sports blogs, Ricky moved up in the fantasy industry when he joined Going9 Baseball. He wrote fantasy baseball content and had a weekly radio spot on the site’s SiriusXM Satellite Radio show. Shortly thereafter, in early 2013, Ricky joined RotoExperts as a three-sport fantasy contributor, eventually becoming one of the site’s lead basketball writers. While writing for RotoExperts, Ricky was introduced to daily fantasy sports and immediately fell in love. With help from some of his mentors, some of the best DFS players in the world, he honed his skills and became the daily fantasy expert he is today. When RotoExperts created a daily-focused website called DailyRoto.com, Ricky was brought on as one of the main contributors. He still makes frequent appearances on the RotoExperts SiriusXM Radio show and on the FNTSY Sports Television Network, talking daily fantasy sports. He also continues to write for a few DFS content sites: RotoCurve and The Fantasy Fix. Ricky is a proud and active member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. He has agreed to be a writer and representative for the FantasyDraft brand and serves as an ambassador to the site. He has no more access to the site than the typical user. Don’t hesitate to contact Ricky with questions on Twitter @RSandersDFS.

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