MLB Punt Plays: Friday Aug. 14

Welcome to my daily MLB article for FantasyDraft’s LockerRoom! Here you will find a breakdown for my favorite low budget MLB players for the day’s (or night’s) main slate. Each article will focus on my favorite low salary starting pitcher and my three favorite low salary batters. Although the title of the article is MLB Punt Plays, like the PGA Punt Plays written by another analyst of our DFS Karma team, they aren’t your traditional “punts.” I truly feel that each player I include in this article moving forward has a very solid chance to score you some points. To ensure my players are always light on salary, my pitcher will have a cap of $13,000 and each batter will be capped at $7,000 in salary.

 

P: Gio Gonzalez – $12,700

Gonzalez has found some success this season, recording an 8-11 record with a 4.40 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP through 28 starts. He has held his opponents to a 0.9 HR/9 while posting a 7.9 K/9 through 151.1 innings. Gonzalez is also coming off of a great game against the San Francisco Giants, scoring 28.35 fantasy points. He has thrown extremely well against left-handed batters this season, holding them to a .227 average with a .363 slugging percentage and a .273 wOBA. Gonzalez gets a matchup against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who have struggled at times against left-handed pitching this season, ranking third last on the slate in team wOBA. The Brewers are -134 favorites in a game set at 8.5 runs, and the Pirates feature an implied run total of only 4.0 runs tonight.

 

IF: Hunter Dozier – $6,800

Dozier has been playing well recently, posting a .268 average with a .537 slugging percentage and a .839 OPS over his last 10 games. He has posted a 62% hard-hit rate with a 96 mph exit velocity over the last 15 days, as well. Dozier gets a matchup against Jose Berrios tonight, and he owns a 0.112 ISO differential against right-handed pitching. Berrios has also allowed right-handed batters to hit for a .231 average with a .376 slugging percentage and a .287 wOBA. Dozier is expected to hit fourth in the Royals lineup, giving him ample opportunities to score runs and RBIs. He has been a relatively consistent option, who also comes with tremendous upside on a nightly basis. He can be considered in all leagues for a surprisingly low price tag on this slate.

 

OF: Marwin Gonzalez – $6,500

Gonzalez has been struggling a bit over his last 10 games, posting a .188 average over that span. He has recorded 40% hard-hit and 44% fly ball rates with a 94 mph exit velocity over the last 15 days, though. He has been a slightly more powerful option against left-handed pitching, as he features 0.007 ISO differentials against lefties. He gets a matchup against Robbie Ray, who is allowing right-handed batters to hit for a .253 average with a .437 slugging percentage and a .348 wOBA this season. Gonzalez is hitting seventh in the Astros lineup, and he makes a high upside tournament option tonight.

 

UTIL: Chris Davis – $5,700

Davis has been struggling a bit on paper recently, but he has been a more consistent and a more powerful option at home this season. He has also recorded 39% hard-hit and 34% fly ball rates with a 91 mph exit velocity over the last 15 days, suggesting he is seeing the ball better than his numbers represent. Davis gets a solid matchup against James Shields, and he features 0.054 wOBA and 0.005 ISO differentials against righties. Shields has struggled against left-handed batters on the road this season, allowing them to hit for a .256 average with a .523 slugging percentage and a .367 wOBA. Davis is expected to hit fifth in the Orioles lineup, and he’s a player that should strictly be used in tournaments tonight.

Justin Bales

Justin Bales

Justin can be found on FantasyDraft under the name "balessjustin." He is a recent college graduate, who earned a degree in Sociology with a co-concentrate in Music Business. He has been playing and writing about fantasy sports for quite some time, including football, baseball, basketball, college sports, and MMA. He generally plays tournaments, but can occasionally be found in H2H's or 50/50s.

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