What’s up FANation! So I’ll be honest, the pitching on this slate SUCKS. You can’t really feel overly comfortable using any of these guys, but of course we have to use some anyway, so let’s break down a couple!
Framber Valdez, HOU – Valdez is coming off back-to-back outings with at least 19.1 points on DK. He currently has seven wins, a 3.01 ERA, and 66 strikeouts across 71.2 innings of work (12 starts). He faced the Twins earlier this season and was dominant against them, firing seven innings of two-run (one earned) ball with two strikeouts while picking up the win and finishing with 17 points on DK. He has pretty even home/road splits outside of K/9 as his K/9 at home is 9.3 and his K/9 on the road is 7.4, not sure why there is such a big difference, but you obviously prefer that home number and he is pitching at home tonight.
Sonny Gray, CIN – Gray is coming off a dynamite outing against the Mets in which he fired six innings of one-run ball with seven strikeouts while picking up the win and finishing with 25.9 points on DK. He faced the Pirates earlier this season and pitched well, tossing 4.2 innings of one-run ball with five strikeouts. That shouldn’t be all that shocking though as the Pirates are dead last in runs per game this season with a mark of 3.67. They aren’t doing much better as of late as they are 25th in runs scored over the past 14 days. He has the biggest ceiling of any pitcher on today’s slate.
Touki Toussaint, ATL – Toussaint came up and was electric, delivering 23.4 and 30.8 point games on DK in his first two starts, but the wheels came off in his last start as he was tagged for seven earned runs against the Brewers and finished with -1.9 points. Yes, negative. However, given the pitching on this slate today, he is still one of the best options on the slate as someone with a high ceiling and he has a pretty good matchup today against the Cardinals. They rank 26th in runs per game this season with an average of 3.99 per contest. On top of that they have the seventh highest strikeout rate over the last 14 days at a 24.1-percent clip and are 26th in runs scored in that same span.
Daniel Lynch, KC – Lynch has mostly been terrible, but he’s still one of the game's top prospects and two starts ago he delivered a 27 DK point outing by firing eight shutout innings against the Tigers and picking up a win with four strikeouts. He followed that up with a quality start against the Blue Jays, going six innings with three runs against and two strikeouts. The low strikeout totals are killing his DFS value, but the options are super thin on this slate and with him being the second cheapest pitcher on the slate, he’s not the worst of value plays. The other pitchers in his range (LeBlanc and Jax) do not have that type of 27-point upside and their matchups aren’t any better than Lynch’s is against the White Sox. The White Sox also have the fourth highest strikeout rate over the last 14 days with a mark of 24.8-percent and are 28th in runs scored in that span.