Your Fantasy Baseball Rundown for Friday 6/16
Happy Friday! And as usual, there’s lots of baseball on this Friday. The weather seems to finally be warming up to the usual June temps in the Northeast, which is great for hitting! Let’s take a look at who we are using this Father’s Day Weekend…
Matchups to Target
|Freddie Freeman||1B||LAD||SFG||John Brebbia||7||5||3||1||.714||1.43|
|Alex Verdugo||OF||BOS||NYY||Domingo German||15||5||4||1||.333||1.11|
|Corey Seager||SS||TEX||TOR||Kevin Gausman||15||6||1||0||.400||.993|
|Whit Merrifield||2B||TOR||TEX||Martin Perez||28||10||3||0||.357||.864|
|Shohei Ohtani||DH||LAA||KAN||Brady Singer||3||1||0||0||.333||.333|
After a scorching month of May where Freddie batted .400, he’s cooled a bit, hitting just .239 in 46 June at-bats. But so goes the long baseball season, with confidence building ups, soul crushing downs, and everything in between. And just when you’ve gone 1-for-13 over your last 3 games, in walks John Brebbia of the Giants to throw you some batting practice. Freeman is 5-for-7 (.714) off the righty, including 2 doubles, a HR, and 2 walks. Now, Brebbia will serve as the opener for the Giants in a “bullpen game,” so Freddie will likely only see him once tonight, but for their sake the Giants had better bring in Tyler or Taylor Rogers since FF is 0-for-10 lifetime off those guys, otherwise he’s 9-for-22 (.409) off of the other Giants relievers (excluding closer Camilo Doval — hitless in 2 ABs). Freddie walked it off for LA Thursday night, so that feeling could carry over to this weekend and begin another hot streak for the perennial All-Star.
Verdugo faces Domingo German in Boston Friday night, coming into the game riding a 7-game hit streak, during which he’s gone 9-for-26 (.346) with a pair of doubles and a pair of RBI. The category-stuffing numbers aren’t there during this streak for “Dugie,” but he’s 5-for-15 (.333) off of German in his career, including 3 doubles and a HR. Hitting conditions are ripe tonight in Fenway according to Ballpark Pal, so balls could be flying around the yard. Note, however, that German has been good his last 2 turns through the rotation, one of which was against these same Boston Red Sox, but despite only scratching one run across the plate against him in New York last Saturday, the Sox did collect 6 hits. And despite Verdugo’s success versus German, the pitcher actually has more success versus lefties (.156 vs .219 — and yes, same was the case in 2022), so if you want to pivot to a righty, Justin Turner could be your man. He’s 3-for-6 off German in his career, with zero strikeouts, and could take advantage of German’s worse road ERA (4.20 vs 2.92 at home).
Even after an 0-for-4 night at the dish on Thursday, Seager is still batting .396 so far in June (21-for-53), with 6 doubles, 4 HR, 13 RBI, 12 runs scored, and 7 walks. He’s facing Kevin Gausman, who has been really good to date (3.12 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 117 K in just 86.2 IP), but was tagged for 6 earned runs off 7 hits his last time out and has a worse road ERA (3.76) than home ERA (2.61 – and that includes the last outing just mentioned). Not only is Seager swinging a hot bat, he is 6-for-15 (.400) off of Gausman lifetime, including a double and 4 walks, and Seager is also better at home this season. He’s 32-for-85 (.376) at home versus 19-for-62 (.306) away. Note again that, like Domingo German, Gausman has one of those repertoires that has more success against lefties (and again, yes, same was the case in 2022), so if you’re looking for a pivot here you could look at Adolis Garcia who has 15 HR on the season and is tied for second in RBI with 55, and he’s 2-for-5 off Gausman with a HR.
Merrifield is seeing the ball well right now, collecting a hit in his last 7 games. He’s 10-for-24 (.417) during that span, and 18-for-47 (.383) in June. Merrifield has scored just twice in June, but that is more attributed to the inability of the cast around him to drive him in, but he scored 17 runs in May so the possibility is there when you’re on base. And when you are on base, you can steal bases. Merrifield has 4 SB (and 3 caught stealing) in June and 18 SB on the season, so he can add points to your lineup that way too. Did I mention he’s had success versus Martin Perez? He’s seen him a bunch and is 10-for-28 (.357) off of him, including 3 doubles and 2 walks. He’s only K’d 3 times in those 28 ABs, so he sees the ball out of the hand of Perez well.
Normally 1-for-3 is not enough history versus the opposing pitcher to get you on this list, but when you are hitting the way Ohtani is right now, you have to perk up and pay attention. Ohtani is on a tear right now, riding the second-longest hit streak in baseball at 12 games, during which he’s gone 22-for-45 (.489) with 13 runs scored, 16 RBI, plus 10 walks and 3 stolen bases. Oh, and he’s worn the kabuto helmet pictured above 7 times during this streak, and is now tied for the MLB lead with 22 HR. Poor Brady Singer. Not the type of hitter you want to see stroll into the box when you have a 6.58 ERA and 1.59 WHIP on the year, and are allowing a .301 batting average to lefties (.278 to righties if you’re wondering).
DFS Stacks to Consider
There are a few to look at here, but we need to narrow it down to the best, so here are the two to target:
Olson/Albies/Harris (ATL) vs Dinelson Lamet (COL)
The game with the highest over/under run total on the board is the Rockies @ Braves (10.5). Dinelson Lamet toes the rubber for the Rockies, sporting a 10.38 ERA. When you don’t pitch a ton of innings and have a few bad outings, the ERA can look a bit inflated, but since 4/23 he just plain hasn’t been good. He’s pitched 12.2 innings over 6 games since then (spending 15 days on the IL during that time), allowing 24 hits and 19 earned runs while walking 10 and striking out 15. The Rockies have one of the worst bullpens in all of baseball, and in the National League they have the highest WHIP (1.45) and the most earned runs allowed (142). Five Braves players are batting above .300 over the last 10 days (Arcia/Harris/Acuna/Albies/Ozuna) so these could be who you focus on, but note that Lamet allows a whopping .400 batting average to lefties this season, so that is why Matt Olson is included here — he is tied for 4th in the MLB with 19 HR and has 46 RBI (and went yard Thursday). Harris is a lefty and Ozzie is a switch hitter. Arcia is a righty who could be a value play at shortstop, and Acuna is great but he’ll cost you.
Ohtani/Moniak/Drury (LAA) vs Brady Singer (KAN)
After mulling some other options this is the other stack to go with. Call it the “sleeper” stack. Obviously Ohtani is not a sleeper, but Mickey Moniak has been good for the Halos over his last 9 games, going 10-for-33 (.303) with 4 doubles, 2 HR, and 7 RBI. Not only has he been good, but he’s also a lefty, so while there’s no history versus Singer, we’ve already mentioned that lefties hit Singer better. Drury should be back after serving a 1-game suspension, and while he’s not a lefty, he too has been one of the better Angels hitters of late, collecting at least one hit in 10 of 12 June games, batting .300 thus far in June. If you’re wondering, Mike Trout is an uncharacteristic .111 in June (5-for-45), so that’s why he’s not included here, although with the downs also come ups and “regression to the mean,” which means he could bust out at any moment. Also FYI, this game has one of the higher over/unders set at 9.5 runs.
Start vs Sit
Start Christian Yelich
Yelich is hitting .333 (17-for-51) in June with 5 doubles, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 9 runs scored, 8 walks, and 4 stolen bases. He’s going against 43-year old Rich Hill, who he is 5-for-15 against with 3 doubles and 3 walks.
Sit Starling Marte
Like Yelich, Marte is having a decent June, hitting .302 (13-for-43), but he’s going against Miles Mikolas. Mikolas isn’t a name that strikes fear in the minds of batters, but Marte is just 5-for-35 (.143) off of Mikolas lifetime, with 6 strikeouts. Mikolas has actually been better on the road this season, with a 3.00 ERA in 7 road games, versus 4.97 in 7 home starts.
Rays @ Padres under 0.5 runs 2nd Inning (-148 on FanDuel): McClanahan versus Darvish, two good pitchers against the (presumably) lower part of the order, in a game that has one of the lowest o/u run totals at 7.5. Simple as that.
White Sox @ Seattle over 7.5 runs (-114 on FanDuel): Kopech (CWS) versus Woo (SEA), two pitchers with high ERAs. Woo was better his last time out but is still only making his third career start. The White Sox bats came alive the last 2 games of the Dodgers series (although Thursday’s loss could be deflating after being up 4-0), so look for Luis Robert Jr., Jake Burger, and the rest to get to Woo.