Over the last six days, we’ve had 15 games per day. Cut that number by a third here on Thursday because we’re down to 10 games. Some teams are enjoying their last days off before the end of the season and others have one more. Today’s focus will be on the eight night games on the card because the two Thursday getaway day games could have some very interesting lineups and other wrinkles. There’s plenty to consider, so let’s dive right in.
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.
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The salaries listed are from DraftKings:
Here are the top teams to stack for September 15:
Chicago Cubs – I would have some worries about the Cubs today coming off of a big series against St. Louis, but they do have the opportunity to clinch tonight, so maybe that’s a motivating factor. They do draw right-hander Jimmy Nelson, which should also be a motivating factor. Nelson has allowed a .291/.393/.472 slash since the All-Star Break and he’s hung a 5.95 ERA in his 56 innings. He’s also given up 10 unearned runs in that span, so it could be a lot worse. Aside from dramatic park factors, I’m not a big believer in home/road splits in a small sample, but his ERA is 1.75 runs higher away from home with average, OBP, and SLG against spikes across the board.
Los Angeles Dodgers – If you throw right-handed, the Dodgers have a good chance to hit you. Unfortunately for Archie Bradley, he didn’t grow up a southpaw. Bradley has a 5.10 ERA with a 4.51 FIP and a 4.30 xFIP on the season. He’s been a little bit better of late, but his last five starts have come against San Francisco, Colorado, Cincinnati, Atlanta, and San Diego. This is a different animal and he’s not missing many bats lately.
Baltimore – We’ll give the Orioles a look tonight against Blake Snell. The Rays rookie has largely been able to pitch around his high walk rate, but all it takes is a couple walks and a blast to start turning the tide. He hasn’t been efficient, pitching more than five innings just once in his last six starts, which means a lot of the Rays bullpen. The Orioles have plenty of sluggers, so stacking them is pretty easy to do.
Here are the top value hitters for September 15:
Brandon Belt ($3,400) – It’s weird every time that Brandon Belt is at a low salary. It’s not like Adam Wainwright has been dominant this season and Belt has a very respectable .272/.388/.463 slash line on the season. He’s only hit 15 home runs, but he’s a reliable player at a position where salaries are usually inflated. He’s had some strikeout issues recently, but Wainwright is not a big strikeout guy.
Yunel Escobar ($3,900) – It’s really not a good day for finding cheap hitting. Yunel Escobar has fared very well against left-handed pitching in his career, so he’s worth a look tonight, even though he’s not much of a power threat. Escobar has a .337/.407/.490 slash this season against lefties, which is 48 percent above league average. He’s been above league average each of the last four seasons in this split.
Domingo Santana ($3,900) – Unfortunately, due to injuries, it has been a throwaway year for the promising slugger. He’s made the most of his 72 plate appearances against lefties with four of his eight home runs and a .311/.417/.557 slash line. He’s got a .415 wOBA and a 158 wRC+ in that split. He’ll get a couple of plate appearances against Mike Montgomery and then we’ll see what happens after that.
Here are the top value pitchers for September 15:
Jerad Eickhoff ($7,500) – Jerad Eickhoff is putting together a really solid season for the Phillies. He’s also finishing it on a high note. With two strong starts in September, Eickhoff sports a 3.62 ERA in the second half with a .251/.294/.437 slash against. He’s been able to limit damage because he’s only walked 11 of the 265 batters that he has faced in the second half. Against the dead-in-the-water Pirates, he’s a good streaming option today.
JA Happ ($8,300) – I’ve been a pretty big JA Happ skeptic and I believe this might be the first time he’s made it into this article this season. It’s a good place to stream him. He’s got 149 K in 170.1 innings of work and he’s going out west to an excellent pitcher’s park. Happ actually has more than a strikeout per inning over his last 10 starts covering 58 innings, so this price definitely looks a little bit light tonight.
Eduardo Rodriguez ($5,900) – This isn’t a great streaming option, necessarily, but there is some upside. The Yankees have had plenty of struggles with lefties throughout the season and Eduardo Rodriguez has posted a 2.76 ERA with a 3.84 FIP in his last 10 starts since getting recalled on July 16. He has 50 strikeouts in 58.2 innings in that span, so he has had some swing-and-miss back in his arsenal.