The Dongers Club - Wed July 29th

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SLATE INTRO

Not much to highlight from last night other than the pitching did wind up being as dumpster fire as everyone else thought -- but in reality it was a great FD slate with Merrill Kelly being the easy SP1 and he should have been higher owned and that potentially helped many of you out by having him. As for today, we're onto one of those SP1 type slates with some big name Ace's on the mound but I am very cautious to not get too settled into a normal MLB season routine and remember that this is still a short season and the sprint aspect of things will keep the aces down from being must starts every time out.

Scheduling is the biggest impact today

  • New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles - This is a game that was not originally scheduled and is an adjustment from the Marlins COVID-19 spread. Of course the Yankees get the benefit of new games in Camden Yards where they murdered Baltimore last year. Of course they do!
  • Both FD and DK have the exact same slate and have included the Yanks/Os game on it.
  • Lock is 7pm

WEATHER

There are no issues or impacts today. Some lingering showers headed towards Camden Yards for the Yanks/O's game but it will play fine.

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As I outlined above, there's some aces today and some key decisions to make where we have A vs B options on the pricing and that's always the way I try to measure debating a pitcher on one site versus another. For example on FanDuel Today you have Cole at 11.7k and deGrom at 11.2k then you have Paddack at 9.7k and Woodruff at 8.7k. All four are likely popular choices today but you aren't debating Cole vs Paddack per say, you are saying do I want to spend 11.7k or 9.7k for my pitcher based upon how I build out my bats. If you fall into that 11k range then it's a Cole vs deGrom decision. Make sense? If not, I'll get out a whiteboard and draw it for you with lots of lines all over the place and then you might understand better?

The Office - B.O.B.O.D.D.Y. GIF | Gfycat

Chris Paddack

You're probably like, dude, you could have just told us Paddack was your choice and cut to the chase. But then I wouldn't have been able to post a GIF from The Office and see, there's nothing wrong with doing that now is there? Now that we have you thinking in terms of presentations and flow charts for the analysis decision let me walk you through this thought pattern. Paddack beats Woodruff in the same range because the Giants have a slightly higher strikeout projection against Paddack than the Pirates do vs Woodruff in my mind. Paddack also has the 2k savings on Cole who even though he should whiff down an Orioles lineup which has been off since Sunday, I don't want to spend extra for the premium pitching quite yet. So the sheriff gets the nod.

Gerrit Cole

But yeah, Cole is a no brainer and the play over deGrom. Playing both Cole and Paddack on DraftKings today is a fast track to putting yourself in solid contention to be cashing with just a few hitters doing well.

Andrew Heaney

Here's the boom or bust play of the day. I had lots of people over the past few days ask me about ownership and if I am fading or playing certain spots because of ownership. My immediate answer is always no because I look at who is a good or bad play and recommend based off that. I didn't fade the Red Sox yesterday because they were chalk, I faded them because they are bad. However, I may have mislead some of you with my answer because when it comes to Pitching the upside of fading a chalky player who has high risk is greatly increased and I think Heaney falls into that category today on DraftKings where he's just $7,900. If we get closer to lock and it's smelling like Heaney is a 40% owned pitcher I'd be more than fine not touching him and hoping the Mariners do enough to force his pitch count up to get him out before a full five innings as that's the biggest hurdle he has today.

Outside of the Box Play

Nathan Eovaldi

Eovaldi gets a nice park shift going into Citi Field as this series shifts parks. What do we know about Jacob deGrom starts? He never gets run support and Eovaldi is the benefactor of that today while being around the same price as Heaney while a road underdog. He's your pivot.

A few thoughts on guys I am not using

  • Jacob deGrom - Boston while not being good offensively is not a strike out target. This doesn't mean deGrom can't strike them out, but it's not a smash spot.
  • Mike Soroka - Don't play pitchers in Atlanta this season. It's the opposite of Texas.
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St. Louis Cardinals (and yeah, the Twins)

Paul Goldschmidt, Paul DeJong, Tommy Edman, Yadier Molina

This lineup is centered around Paul Goldschmidt, America's 1st Baseman who sometimes we forget is a LHP masher himself and has certainly not struggled with Rich Hill (8-18, 1 HR) in his career. I love the Cardinals potential in any park when they go on the road because their own stadium can be a tough place to have big games in and we saw Edman get a lucky HR last night off Buxton's glove and Tyler O'Neil went yard as well. But it's Goldy-DeJong that drive this combination today and the ball should be carrying in Target field very well today.

Meanwhile the Minnesota Twins are pretty much into that auto-play territory right now. Ponce de Leon has good movement on his pitches but that's the exact pitch you don't wanna be offering up to Cruz, Sano, Kepler and Garver. I think Kepler sets the table tonight and if things go well you'll need the Cruz-Rosario part of the order. With Kepler out my focus has shifted down to Cruz-Rosario and Sano.

Houston Astros

Tucker, Altuve, Bregman, Brantley, Correa

I think everyone will pick on the Houston kid starting who should throw lots of fastballs to the Dodgers -- but it's the Astros who are pissed off tonight and will tear a new one into the darling that is 6 foot fricken 6, Dustin May...

Chalk Stack of the day

New York Yankees

Torres, Urshela, Sanchez, LeMahieu

All these guys have insane data elements in their favor. They match-up against Woj well, they hit RHP well, they have murdered Camden Yards, etc, etc, etc.... They're obvious chalk today too, etc. etc. etc. They also haven't faced live pitching since Sunday afternoon and didn't do much then either. If anyone has NOT gotten into a rythym yet it is the Yankees bats except for Stanton mashing the ball. If you wanted a Yankee fade in Camden night, today is it because of that theory.

Again, do not fade batters because of ownership, fade them because you feel they aren't going to perform. And given that batters do fail ~70% of the time, the odds are always there...

Other Spots to consider

  • Kansas City RoyalsWhit Merrifield, Jorge Soler, SalvyWhenever hitters know a pitcher well they're usually the side to lean on but this one has shown to go both ways at times. However, Whit Merrifield continues to be locked in right now, Salvy is swinging a nice bat and had a day off from doing catching last night while Jorge Soler as you know by now has murdered Detroit pitching on all fronts. Boyd's a quality arm who has been better at home in his career but with good weather again in Comerica and the confidence KC's top guys have right now (EXCEPT FOR MONDESI WHO IS COMPLETELY LOST) you should look here for some more pop before the Royals go home and become irrelevant.
  • Tampa Bay (Renfroe, Zunino, Diaz) ... Whenever the Rays are in Camden Yards my whole world gets very excited because they're out of their Tropicana Field and into a nice hitters park. Well they aren't in Camden Yards today but they're in a pretty sneaky ballpark to be dropping some destruction. Yes, formerly SunTrust Park and now Truist Park was my #1 ranked stadium coming into 2020 because of not just a random concrete theory -- but also the humidity there and the fact that the Braves pitching staff is in shambles. The Kyle Wright longshot didn't work for those who tried it yesterday and my concern continues to mount with a young set of catchers behind the pltae in Atlanta as well. Soroka is an Ace and their best arm, but even he is someone who is going to struggle in Truist and Tampa WILL get 4+ innings against the struggling pen. Don't ignore the RH bats. The data does NOT support this play and they should be 2% owned. This is a gut instinct that the park plays extremely hitter friendly in 2020.
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CATCHER

Secretly a good position today. Lots of studs to fade but if you want someone cheap and against chalk on DK, look at Austin Nola for Seattle.

  1. Austin Nola - Questionable ...
  2. Gary Sanchez
  3. Yadier Molina
  4. Salvador Perez

FIRST BASE

  1. Paul Goldschmidt - Hammers lefties and has hit Rich Hill without issues.
  2. Miguel Sano
  3. Eric Hosmer

SECOND BASE

  1. DJ LeMahieu
  2. Jose Altuve ... Versus a tall pitcher, need I say more?
  3. Luis Arraez ... Ugh, wish Kepler was leading off but he is. Either way he is very capable of it.

THIRD BASE

  1. Giovany Urshela
  2. Kevin Seitzer
  3. Larry the next door neighbor.
  4. Eric Sogard

In other words.... 3B Sucks today.

SHORTSTOP

Shortstop on the other hand - does not suck

  1. Gleyber Torres
  2. Paul DeJong
  3. Carlos Correa

OUTFIELD - Mt. Rushmore

  1. Jorge Soler
  2. Ronald Acuna Jr.
  3. Aaron Judge
  4. Nobody

Outfield - Tier 2

  1. Michael Brantley
  2. Christian Yelich ... Yo, season started bud. Lefties park. What you say? You in?
  3. Whit Merrifield
  4. Eddie Rosario

Outfield - Value

  1. Aaron Hicks - He is only $2500 on FD and we have high priced pitchers going today. This is what we call the "Chris Sale" effect, where every cheap outfielder hits a bomb
  2. Jose Martinez
  3. Kyle Tucker
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BEST CONTEST REFRESHER

These are the things I look for the most and encourage you to do it as well. We are all going to chase big $ contests w/ multiple lineups and that is fine, but you need balance in your MLB portfolio, so add the Dongers Club Growth Funds:

  1. 10x to first: This one is going to be hard for many of you but it's the #1 golden rule to staying profitable during the MLB grind. You need these contests mixed in more than you realize. What is 10x to first? It means that the prize for 1st Place which everyone obsesses with is 10x the entry fee. So yeah, that means a $10 contest pays out $100 to first. Or my favorite $100 pays out $1000. You are thinking what's the point? These type of contests usually aren't as common and they're a waste of time, I want my 50x to first!! Well, guess what. You will find that you win these 10x to first contests far often and that type of boost is way better than any other you will find. They're smaller and usually have folks who are late registering their contests in them. Find these. Play these.
  2. Less than 1,000 Users: Very simple rule. Avoid contests that have too many users. A big misconception is that MME is hard to beat and you cant beat someone with a single lineup if they have maxed out the limits on a contest. Not true. The more lineups they are putting in the chances are more bad lineups as well. It comes down to the TOTAL number of users you have to beat. Fewer is better.
  3. Get out of the $1 and $3 and $5 contests: If you are living here, you aren't about making money. Sorry.
  4. Play a 3-man to bust a slump: Yes, they are full of what folks call Sharks. No, they are not invincible. When you're in a slump, play one of these.
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  1. Paul Goldschmidt - 1B - St. Louis Cardinals - Chairman
  2. Jose Altuve - 2B - Astros
  3. Aaron Hicks - OF - Yankees
  4. Paul DeJong - SS - St. Louis
  5. Aaron Judge - OF - Yankees
  6. Jorge Soler - OF - Royals
  7. Alex Bregman - 3B - Astros
  8. Austin Nola - C - Mariners
  9. BONUS .................................. Miguel Sano - 1B - Twins