Thursday’s On the Hill article will be FREE and will also take on a little bit of a different look with just four games on the DraftKings main slate (five on FanDuel). First of all, there is really only one pitcher that I want to roster but I’ll give you two since I guess you have to throw somebody in the second slot on DK. On the hitting side, instead of full 4-man stacks, I’ll give you what I like to call “Suited Connectors” which are a pair of hitters from the same that hit close to each other in the lineup. There are six pairs that I like on Thursday’s slate. This offers a great way to be contrarian in GPPs on a small slate and is a Cash game staple of mine regardless of the slate size.
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Let’s mow down the competition 3 Up and 3 Down…
Jose Berrios (FD-$9,000 / DK-$11,000)
Berrios is the only pitcher that I trust to roster on Thursday’s small slate. He will occupy every one of my lineups Cash and GPP on both sites. He gets the benefit of the continued cold weather in Minnesota on a night when the wind will be blowing in slightly. Berrios pitched significantly better at home last season with a 2.41 ERA (5.17 on the road) and has dominated the White Sox hitters so far in his career allowing just a .198 wOBA with a massive 38.7% strikeout rate in 75 plate appearances. He is also one of the biggest favorites on the slate. Lock him in!
Ian Kennedy (FD-$7,700 / DK-$7,200)
I’d almost rather recommend a relief pitcher than any other starting pitcher on Thursday’s slate but that probably isn’t wise so I’ll go with Kennedy as my value arm on two-pitcher sites. He has pitched well to start the season with back-to-back quality starts and a 0.75 ERA with a 28.9% strikeout rate. Kennedy has had some good seasons during his career and has pitched pretty well against the current collection of Angels’ hitters over his career allowing a .296 wOBA with a decent 22.7% strikeout rate. I know the Angels are hot right now scoring at least seven runs in four straight games put most of that production came in Texas against a weak Rangers pitching staff. It might not be pretty but I’m giving Kennedy a shot as my #2 arm.
Nationals vs. Chad Bettis
Trea Turner (FD-$4,200 / DK-$4,800)
Brian Goodwin (FD-$2,600 / DK-$3,500)
The Nationals have the second highest Vegas implied run total on the slate and should benefit from the strong winds blowing out on Thursday night. While Bryce Harper is always an option, I’m looking to stack up the top two hitters in the order with Turner and Goodwin filling in for Adam Eaton. Shortstop is a tough position to fill and Turner is 3-for-5 with a homer off Bettis in his career. Small sample for sure but I do expect Turner to have a breakout game soon.
Royals vs. Nick Tropeano
Mike Moustakas (FD-$3,700 / DK-$4,100)
Lucas Duda (FD-$2,900 / DK-$3,500)
Tropeano is scheduled to make his first start since the 2016 season where he posted a solid 3.56 ERA in 13 starts. Tropeano has allowed a .342 wOBA to lefties early in his career and the Royals have a pair of lefties at reasonable salaries hitting right in the middle of the lineup with Moustakas and Duda. With warmer temps in Kansas City tonight and the winds blowing out it could be rough return for Tropeano to the big leagues.
Twins vs. Lucas Giolito
Eddie Rosario (FD-$2,500 / DK-$2,900)
Logan Morrison (FD-$2,200 / DK-$3,000)
Looking for value then look no further than the Twins duo of Rosario and Morrison. They both come with very cheap salaries despite hitting in the middle of the lineup and in a favorable matchup against the White Sox right-hander Lucus Giolito. Giolito has allowed 1.88 HR/9 to lefties so far in his career while Rosario (.377 wOBA, .268 ISO) and Morrison (.374 wOBA, .298 ISO) both crushed right-handers last season.
Red Sox vs. Sonny Gray
JD Martinez (FD-$3,800 / DK-$4,500)
Andrew Benintendi (FD-$3,600 / DK-$3,800)
Watch the weather for the next two stacks with the Red Sox/Yankees game a potential PPD. However, if it does play then consider a Martinez/Benintendi stack for the Red Sox. Martinez is heating up at the plate with two homers over his last four games and has a double and home run off Gray in seven career at-bats. Meanwhile, Benintendi is 4-for-6 with a homer off Gray and has a career .358 wOBA at home against righties.
Yankees vs. Rick Porcello
Didi Gregorius (FD-$4,100 / DK-$4,600)
Gary Sanchez (FD-$3,400 / DK-$4,100)
Any Yankees’ stack that does not include Aaron Judge and/or Giancarlo Stanton will be contrarian. However, give me the 4-5 hitters in the lineup with Gregorius and Sanchez. Sanchez is coming off a two-homer performance last night and has a tendency to hit homers in streaks. Gregorius posted a .405 wOBA and .246 ISO against right-handed pitching on the road last season.
Rockies vs. Gio Gonzalez
Nolan Arenado (FD-$4,300 / DK-$4,700)
DJ LeMahieu (FD-$3,400 / DK-$3,900)
Any sort of Rockies stack will likely be low owned since they are on the road against one of the better pitchers on the slate in Gio Gonzalez. However, with the wind blowing out and Gonzalez’s tendency to allow fly balls and home runs to righties, I’m getting some shares of the Rockies’ right-handed bats with Arenado and LeMahieu (also don’t mind Trevor Story and Ian Desmond). Arenado posted a .520 wOBA and .395 ISO on the road versus lefties last season, while LeMahieu is 2-for-4 with a homer against Gonzalez and had a .363 wOBA on the road against southpaws last year.
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