That’s My M.O.

Matt Olson draws a great matchup against Mike Foltynewicz, a pitcher who has struggled against lefties throughout his career, and he is basically free. Do not be afraid to punt a spot with the talented Athletics outfielder. This offense should go nuts and Olson should lead the charge. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s MLB.


Anthony Rizzo, Cubs, $9,300 – Yesterday, the Brewers announcers referred to Cincinnati’s home stadium as the “Great American Small-park” and that actually is a very accurate nickname. Balls were flying out of the yard yesterday, as they normally do, and the park plays more power-friendly to LHHs. Therefore, this park is just begging Anthony Rizzo to hit the ball out and Rizzo has 15 times over the course of his career (most of any ballpark outside of Wrigley Field). Tonight’s probable pitcher, Scott Feldman, has done a reasonable job of limiting hard contact to RHHs but lefties have been a different story. This season, lefties have posted a .356 wOBA, 9.2-percent BB rate, 1.56 HR/9 rate, .280/.353/.481 slash line, 28.7-percent line drive rate and 32.5-percent hard hit rate against Feldman. Additionally, opposing base steals have stolen 10 bases on Feldman this year which is tied for the 11th most of any qualified starting pitcher (and this has been an issue for him throughout his whole career). Although Rizzo does not steal a ton of bases, he has already stolen five this year and swiped 17 bags just two seasons ago, so this certainly adds a bit to his upside. All-in-all, Rizzo should once again enjoy hitting in this favorable environment and is amongst the top overall hitters on the slate.

Edwin Encarnacion, Indians, $8,800 – Speaking of the top overall hitters, Edwin Encarnacion’s matchup on paper jumps off the page. Opposing starter Anibal Sanchez has been absolutely roasted by RHHs this year: .433 wOBA, 3.63 HR/9 rate, .307/.386/.671 slash line, 45.5-percent hard hit rate and 42.3-percent fly ball rate. Over the course of the last two weeks, Encarnacion is on one of his patented heaters as he is slashing .333/.458/.649 during that span with a .316 ISO and .451 wOBA. On a team filled with switch-handers and left-handers, Encarnacion’s .246 wOBA against RHP ranks third (behind Jose Ramirez and Lonnie Chisenhall) and his 37.9-percent hard hit rate ranks second. Very few pitchers allow more hard contact to righties and very few RHHs hit the ball harder than Encarnacion so this is the definition of a perfect correlation play. Bombs away!


Steven Souza Jr., Rays, $8,400 – The aforementioned Sanchez is not the only righty on the slate who has been crushed by RHHs this season as Chris Tillman has fared nearly as poorly. All righties have done this year is smash Tillman to the tune of a .400 wOBA, 2.42 HR/9 rate, .342/.370/.589 slash line, 25.0-percent line drive rate, 38.7-percent hard hit rate and a 43.5-percent line drive rate. Of course, Corey Dickerson has been a man possessed this season and leads the Rays in wOBA against RHP but Steven Souza Jr. is not far behind. Hell, Tillman has allowed a .463 wOBA to lefties as well, so Dickerson is certainly in play, but a majority of the fly balls he has yielded have come off the bat of righties. Consequently, Souza and his .390 wOBA, .274 ISO and 37.2-percent hard hit rate stands out as the best play on the team in a matchup against a total gas can. The Rays are certainly stackable but make sure to start with Souza.

Matt Olson, Athletics, $4,500 – Sometimes a price is just too affordable to pass on and this is one of those times. Mike Foltynewicz has been susceptible to lefties throughout the entirety of his career and this season has been no different. In 33.2 IP against them this year, Foltynewicz has allowed a .390 wOBA, 1.60 HR/9 rate, .333/.402/.503 slash line, 25.8-percent line drive rate, 35.0-percent hard hit rate and 39.2-percent fly ball rate. Despite the price, Olson has a little bit of pop as evident by his 17 homers at Triple-A prior to his call-up. In case fantasy owners did not know, Olson was the team’s first pick in the 2012 draft so his ascendance to the big leagues has been a long time coming. Take this price tag all the way to the bank and roster him while the masses are still unsure of his massive talent.


Alex Wood, Dodgers, $22,800 – If judging simply by numbers, Alex Wood has pitched like one of the best four or so pitchers in the entire league this year. No other pitcher has induced a 12-plus percent swinging strike rate and has forced opponents into ground balls at a 65-plus percent rate. This ace will now draw the best possible matchup for a left-handed pitcher (Padres) in arguably the best possible ballpark (Petco Park). Basically, Wood is in a better spot than Jacob deGrom and yet he is priced $1,500 cheaper. Do not be afraid to just lock Wood into all lineups.

Lance McCullers Jr., Astros, $17,100 – Last night, the Yankees did not start their game until 10pm and did not finish until after 1pm central time. Afterwards, they had to fly to Houston and now have a game tonight against Lance McCullers Jr. That is just a brutal schedule and right now the Yankees are completely decimated due to injury; all of Starlin Castro, Matt Holliday, Aaron Hicks, Greg Bird, Tyler Austin and Dustin Fowler are currently on the disabled list plus they just designated Chris Carter for assignment. Therefore, the only real threats left in the lineup are Brett Gardner, Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorius and it is otherwise basically a Triple-A lineup. People may look at the Yankees numbers overall and get scared off but McCullers has been excellent at home and this matchup is not nearly as difficult as it seems. At this price tag, McCullers has a great shot to flirt with double-digit strikeouts and the Yankees are only being implied to score 3.1 runs. Count me in.

Ariel Miranda, Mariners, $10,800 – Lastly, Ariel Miranda is at least an interesting proposition in the bargain pricing tier because the Angels rank dead last in wOBA against LHP amongst American League teams. Clayton Kershaw absolutely dominated them last night, and while Miranda is not Kershaw, he has pitched at least 7.0 innings in consecutive starts and this ballpark should play to his strengths. Angel Stadium is a tough park to hit it out of and Miranda is a pure fly ball pitcher. The Angels are completely devoid of power so he should be able to cruise to another quality start. If needing salary relief at the position, look no further than Miranda.

*Stats are accurate as of Thursday, June 29

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, 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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