MLB Tournament Thoughts w/ ShipMyMoney

Tonight on FantasyDraft, we have a $7,500 Home Run with a manageable $25 entry fee and a 9 entry limit so we will not see the field overrun by anyone one player with a big bankroll.  There are 14 games on the slate, so here are some of the players I am considering for my tournament lineups.


Starting Pitchers

Jacob DeGrom, New York Mets, $20,200

DeGrom will probably not go overlooked on this slate, but he will probably be lower owned than Chris Sale at a similar price point.  Both players are significantly underpriced and are excellent plays, but rostering DeGrom at lower ownership than Sale makes a lot of sense.

DeGrom has been excellent this season, posting a 33.9 percent strikeout percentage that is backed up by a slate-leading 15.6 percent swinging strike percentage and 36.6 percent o-swing percentage.  He is coming off one of his most impressive outings of the season, where he recorded a 19.8 percent swinging strike percentage and 53.5 percent o-swing percentage against the Chicago Cubs- one of the most difficult teams in baseball to strike out.  He also reached his highest fastball velocity of the season as he topped out at just over 100 miles per hour.

Tonight, he will face a dangerous New York Yankees team that offers plenty of strikeout upside.  New York has the 10th-highest strikeout percentage against right-handed pitching this season and most of their dangerous hitters are susceptible to righties with good breaking pitches.

DeGrom certainly fits the bill as he has a 22.1 percent swinging strike percentage on his slider, which he throws 27.2 percent of the time to right-handed hitters.  He also mixes in a curveball 6.4 percent of the time against righties that has produced a 21.6 percent swinging strike percentage this season.  New York’s projected lineup features five right-handed hitters plus the pitcher.

DeGrom has struck out 36.4 percent of right-handed hitters this season while allowing just 28.2 percent hard contact and inducing 25.6 percent soft contact.  He has recorded a 45.5 percent groundball percentage to go along with a 21.7 percent infield fly ball percentage.  So, in summary, 36.4 percent of right-handed hitters have struck out against DeGrom this season and, of the ones who manage to put the ball in play, 67.2 percent have either hit a groundball or popped up in the infield.


Vince Velasquez, Philadelphia Phillies, $16,100

Velasquez offers immense upside in the mid-tier as he takes on the Milwaukee Brewers tonight in Philadelphia. Velasquez has been excellent of late, posting swinging strike percentages of 18.7, 11.2 and 16.9 percent in his last three outings while striking out 36.0, 28.6 and 40.9 percent of hitters.

Overall for the season, Velasquez has struck out 29.2 percent of hitters with an 11.9 percent swinging strike percentage.  The Brewers have the 9th-highest strikeout percentage against right-handed pitchers this season at 23.8 percent and Velasquez’s strikeout numbers at home have been better than on the road as he has struck out 33.6 percent of hitters at home and 26.1 percent on the road this season.  He had similar splits last season, striking out 25.3 percent of hitters at home and 17.2 percent on the road and, in 2016, he struck out 32.6 percent of hitters at home and 23.1 percent on the road.



Anthony Rendon, Washington Nationals, $7,600

Rendon is inexpensive and has a nice matchup tonight against Andrew Suarez outside of AT&T Park.  Suarez has allowed a .398 xwOBA and .293 xISO to right-handed hitters so far this season and Rendon has been excellent against lefties over the last couple of seasons.  He produced a .461 wOBA and .346 ISO in 104 at-bats against lefties last season and has a .482 xwOBA and .407 xISO in his first 45 at-bats against southpaws this season.


Kendrys Morales, Toronto Blue Jays, $6,300

Morales is a tough player to roster as he really needs to hit the ball over the fence to be useful in DFS as he is incredibly slow, which makes it difficult for him to be productive on balls that stay in the field of play as anything on the ground becomes an out and potential doubles become long singles.

Tonight he is very inexpensive and in an excellent matchup tonight against Andrew Cashner, however.  Cashner has allowed a 47.4 percent fly ball percentage to left-handed hitters with just a 4.3 percent infield fly ball percentage this season.  Not surprisingly, he has allowed 1.93 home runs per nine innings to lefties.  Morales has been hitting the ball well lately, with a 26.7 percent line drive percentage, 30.0 percent groundball percentage and 43.3 percent fly ball percentage over the last 14 days compared to a 16.8 percent line drive percentage, 45.1 percent groundball percentage and 38.1 percent fly ball percentage for the season.

Additionally, he has been hitting the ball hard, with 10.0 percent soft contact and 53.3 percent hard contact over the last 14 days compared to 14.2 percent soft contact and 44.3 percent hard contact for the season.



Hunter Renfroe, San Diego Padres, $7,500

Renfroe faces Marlins’ left-hander Caleb Smith tonight and he is an affordable option for home run upside.  Smith has been impressive this season, striking out 30.2 percent of right-handed hitters.  He has allowed a .209 xISO, however, so they can get to him for extra bases.  Renfroe has struck out just 19.0 percent of the time against left-handed pitchers in 174 plate appearances since the start of the 2016 season while producing a .351 ISO and 169 wRC+.


Curtis Granderson, Toronto Blue Jays, $6,700

Granderson is another inexpensive left-handed bat against Andrew Cashner.  Cashner’s strikeout numbers are much better against lefties than righties this season but, as mentioned earlier, he has allowed too many fly balls and it has led to a home run problem.  Granderson does not have as much power as he used to, but he can still get the job done.  He has a .351 xwOBA and .175 xISO against right-handed pitching this season and has produced a .343 wOBA, .237 ISO and 114 wRC+ in 564 plate appearances against right-handed pitching since the start of last season.


Best of luck in taking second place tonight! ~ ShipMyMoney

Adam Scherer

Adam Scherer

Adam Scherer (aka ShipMyMoney) has been playing full time DFS for the last two years since taking a “sabbatical” from law school. He specializes in MLB and NBA and has a couple live finals appearance under his belt along with a couple high five figure victories in tournaments. Adam likes to dig into the analytics as well as use the “eye test” particularly for his pitcher analysis and understanding NBA game flow and coaching strategies. You can find his work on for both articles as well as the Deeper Dive live video show airing regularly at 5pm ET or on Twitter @ShipMyMoneyDFS

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