MLB DFS 6/16: Thursday Thundersticks?


Tonight’s MLB DFS slate presents some interesting conundrums. First of all, there are just five games on tonight’s 7:05 EDT slate. Second, four of the 10 pitchers are southpaws. Third, each position group goes from very pricey to inexpensive and undesirable with a huge gap in between. That means you’re likely to really gamble on low-cost picks, or have to play some lefty-lefty matchups. Never fear, though, my DFS degenerates. There is still plenty of value available. Favorite value picks are below. At the end, I’ll list another at each remaining position. Finding a combination of these guys could land you a well-rounded lineup.

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***All prices listed are from DraftKings***

Value on the Mound

Zack Wheeler – at Washington ($9,600)

Anyone who has ever seen my picks before knows I never take the top pitcher. However, in a five-game slate that’s not exactly loaded with dependable hurlers and includes one “opener” in a bullpen game… it’s best to get the points you can. We can spend big on one and go medium-big on the other, and look for hitting value. After a pair of clunkers in April, Wheeler has been the real deal. Since those two games, he’s tossed 64 strikeouts in 50.2 innings while allowing just eight earned runs in eight starts. He’s allowing a .203 batting average during that time, and gets a Nationals team having trouble scoring at home (3.67 runs/game).

Best pairing: Shohei Ohtani – at Seattle ($8,200)

Value in the Field

Omar Narvaez, C – at New York Mets ($3,300)

This is great value for a guy who just had a week off after being placed on the COVID list. He’s played in three games since returning and has gone 4-for-10, so Narvaez didn’t seem to rust up during that hiatus. The Milwaukee backstop’s triple slash (.284/.371/.414) is higher overall than his career averages, particularly the .284 average. Narvaez won’t be a gamebreaker for your lineup. But his low cost and a matchup with the Mets’ Tylor Megill seem like ample reason to play him. That’ll get you a few extra dollars to spread around.

Nick Castellanos, OF – at Washington ($4,100)

My propensity for lining up guys against the Nationals’ Patrick Corbin has been well documented. The last time, it came back and bit me hard. Even after that result, though, Corbin is still deadlifting a 3-8 record with a 6.65 ERA and a whopping 1.73 WHIP. Give me a Phillie (any Phillie, or a stack of ’em) in this game.

By all accounts, Castellanos is having a down season. His numbers aren’t horrifying, but they certainly aren’t what we saw in Cincinnati. It’s only a matter of time before he gets on track. In the interim, he is still the type of hitter that can take advantage of a guy like Corbin. Castellanos is batting .253 with seven round-trippers, 27 runs scored and 31 runs batted in. Line him up to bat in Nationals Park tonight.

Christian Yelich, OF – at New York Mets ($3,900)

As you’ll see below in my favorite players at other positions, I love this Mets/Brewers game tonight. Yelich for $3.9K is another great reason. He’s been inserted into the leadoff spot with Kolten Wong (calf) out, and seems to be relishing the change. Yelich is also in the midst of an eight-game hitting streak, with 13 hits and seven runs scored. The move to the top of the lineup hasn’t seemed to affect his swing, as he smashed a homer to leadoff the game on Saturday. Yelich holds a .242/.327/.377 slash with six moonshots, 38 runs scored, and nine stolen bases. He can stuff the stat sheet at the top of the lineup.

Favorite other plays: Pete Alonso (1B – NYM), Jeff McNeil (2B – NYM), Matt Carpenter (3B – STL), J.P. Crawford (SS – SEA), Brandon Marsh (OF – LAA)

These are just my favorite value plays per position. There are plenty of good combinations to be made. Best of luck with all your lineups and contests tonight. Let’s keep rolling.

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