It’s a fairly rare occurrence for a Monday with 13 games and 26 of the league’s 30 teams in action. Usually 11 games is pushing it for the number of games to open up the work week, but days off are few and far between here during the pennant races. The nice part about it is that all of the games are at night, so those that struggle with Monday mornings or have a busy day planned should be able to get in a good lineup before first pitch. Let’s find those final missing pieces for said lineups.
Remember that our column here at BangTheBook is centered exclusively on finding value. You know who the good players are. So does everybody else. It’s those under-the-radar guys that you pair with those high-salary players that allow you to come out on top.
DraftKings or FanDuel are the industry leaders in ease of use and safe, free transactions. Use these tips and the tips from our daily radio show to improve your abilities and fill out the winning lineup. Our MLB daily fantasy tips and suggestions article is different in that we’re not looking for the top scorers, but for the best values so that you can get the edge that you need in order to save money for the game’s best players.
The salaries listed are from DraftKings:
Here are the top teams to stack for August 29:
Toronto – Wade Miley’s back on the mound for the Orioles, so we’re back to stacking against him. Miley luckboxed his way through five innings with only two runs allowed from his eight baserunners in his last start, so we should probably expect an ugly line today. In five starts with the Orioles, Miley owns an 8.18 ERA with a 4.88 FIP and a 3.97 xFIP. For the season, Miley is at 5.51/4.78/4.32. He’s given up 22 home runs in 134 innings and Toronto has a lot of sluggers with platoon advantages here.
Washington – The spotlight still seems to shine a bit too bright for Jake Thompson. One of the key pieces in last year’s Philadelphia/Texas trade that featured Cole Hamels, Thompson has given up 21 runs in his 19.1 MLB innings with a 13/13 K/BB ratio. He seems overwhelmed. He didn’t miss many bats at the upper levels of the minors, which would imply that his margin for error is a bit thin. The Nationals certainly have some sticks capable of doing damage.
Colorado – Through two starts, Kenta Maeda has conquered the light altitude in Coors Field. The third time might not be a charm. Maeda may be running out of gas a little bit in his rookie year. The innings threshold isn’t a big worry, since pitchers in Asian countries are usually worked to the max, but he’s allowed seven HR in just 38 second-half innings with a .431 SLG against. It was .330 in the first half. With Coors in play here, there have to be some worries about his recent uptick in dingers.
Here are the top value hitters for August 29:
Nick Franklin ($3,300) – Nick Franklin is a really cheap option at two high-priced positions (1B/OF), so he could carry some value tonight against Rick Porcello. The switch-hitting utility man hit his fifth HR of the year and he also has six steals in his 36 games, so he has a variety of ways to score points. All five of his HR have come from the right side in 90 PA this season and he’s six-for-seven in bags off RHP. The 25-year-old has been around for a little while, but it seems like he’s finally getting comfortable at this level.
Albert Pujols ($3,600) – Nobody has really noticed that Albert Pujols is putting together a really strong season. The future Hall of Famer is up to .261/.322/.444 on the season because he’s red hot right now with a 1.040 OPS over his last 10 games. Pujols has yet another 25 HR season under his belt and he’s added 100 RBI. Against fly ball hurler Dan Straily, Pujols could be able to muscle another one out and keep adding to his totals.
Nelson Cruz ($3,800) – You don’t get many chances to add Nelson Cruz to your lineup at a reasonable price. People are likely scared away by the prospects of going up against a great pitcher, but great hitters can also have success against great pitchers. Darvish has given up nine home runs in his 65 innings and Cruz has hit 32 home runs on the season. If you want a cheap, name-brand outfielder with power upside, here’s your guy.
Here are the top value pitchers for August 29:
Matt Boyd ($6,700) – It’s really tough to handicap pitcher wins, and it’s not a sound strategy, but it feels like it should be a consideration given that James Shields is the opposing pitcher. But, in a more practical sense, Matt Boyd has been excellent since his July 9 recall. He’s struck out 43 in 45.1 innings of work and has posted a 2.38 ERA. His advanced metrics suggest some regression, but the White Sox are a substandard offense, so we’re probably safe here.
Michael Pineda ($7,100) – I’ve been waiting for a spot to stream Michael Pineda because of the regression potential in his stats and I’ve finally found it here. The Royals played a late one against Boston last night and now host the Yankees in a series with very big Wild Card implications. Pineda’s command hasn’t been up to par this season, with a 5.02 ERA, but he does have a 3.86 FIP and a 3.40 xFIP. The Royals have very little power and are one of the worst offenses in runs scored in baseball. If Pineda can’t shut down this lineup, that’s a major problem.
Joe Musgrove ($7,800) – I nearly went the other way with Sean Manaea, but the Houston lineup has a lot more potential than the Oakland lineup. Joe Musgrove has struggled recently, but he has excellent K/BB rates, so I’m looking for some of his sequencing and HR/FB% luck to turn around. His four starts have come against Texas, Toronto, Baltimore, and Pittsburgh. Oakland is not on that level.