4 Daily Fantasy Baseball Stacks for 7/31/20
In the world of daily baseball, stacks are often the backbone of the most successful -- and profitable -- lineups. Correlation is the key.
When an offense hangs runs in bunches, it means hitters are scoring runs and teammates hitting behind them are driving them in. By rostering stacks, you’re maximizing the fantasy scoring by essentially double dipping on a run-scoring event.
This is your daily home for the top stacks on the daily fantasy baseball slate. Whether you’re looking to identify the projected highest-scoring stacks or contrarian stacks that can help you separate from the pack in GPPs when they explode, they’ll be thrown under the spotlight here.
Gamers who are numberFire premium members can throw these highlighted stacks into an optimized lineup using our DFS Sharpstack tool. The tool allows you to select the team and number of players from that team you’d like to include in your lineup. If you’re looking to identify other potentially high-scoring stacks beyond those featured in this space, check out our hitting heat map, a tool that provides valuable info such as implied total, park factor, and stats to identify the quality of the opposing pitcher.
Without further ado, let’s dive into today’s main slate’s featured stacks.
New York Yankees
I touted the New York Yankees last night, and they're back in a dreamy matchup in their home digs tonight. Of note, Gleyber Torres ($3,500) was forced to leave early as a result of a hit-by-pitch in his first plate appearance, so you'll want to make sure he's in the lineup before deploying him on your daily baseball squad. For what it's worth, he did say after the game that he expects to play today.
Circling back to the matchup, Ryan Weber is a pitch-to-contact hurler who was roughed up for 6 earned runs on 6 hits, 3 walks, 2 homers, and 0 strikeouts in 3 and 2/3 innings against the Baltimore Orioles in his first start of the year. The Yankees are a significantly better offense than Baltimore's.
Last year, despite numerous injuries, the Yankees ranked third against right-handed pitchers in weighted runs created plus (wRC+) at 115 and tied for third in isolated power (ISO) at .218. They also feasted at home, ranking third in wRC+ (112) and sixth in ISO (.211).
Healthier this year, the offense is even more formidable. Instead of rehashing the eye-popping Statcast data from Baseball Savant I shared last night for Aaron Judge ($4,200), Giancarlo Stanton ($3,900) and Gary Sanchez ($3,100), I'll suggest checking that piece out.
Weber's 5.9 swinging-strike percentage in 2019 was the lowest of any pitcher who totaled at least 40 innings, according to FanGraphs. Sanchez is in a funk to start the year, but I'm not throwing the baby out with the bath water and disregarding his superb batted ball data. Additionally, Judge and Stanton are built to hit rockets and punish a pitch-to-contact pitcher like Weber.
The sneaky name from the Yankees I like as a stacking option tonight is Giovanny Urshela ($2,700). He demonstrated above-average exit velocity on fly balls and line drives, ranking tied for 76th out of 250 hitters with an exit velocity of 94.2 miles per hour. He was directly behind slugger Max Muncy, to add some further context to his exit velocity. With a retooled swing, Urshella enjoyed a breakout season at the dish with the Yankees and totaled a .365 OBP, .210 ISO, and 135 in 326 plate appearances against right-handed pitchers in 2019.
Among tonight's probable starters, Trevor Williams' 5.08 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA) in 2019 is the highest. His general ineptitude makes all of the hitters on the Chicago Cubs stackable, but it's his complete inability to quiet left-handed bats that makes the lefties from the Cubs the most attractive stacking options. The 272 left-handed batters Williams faced last year smashed him for a .561 slugging and .393 weighted on-base average (wOBA).
The first notable lefty to use in a Cubs stack is Anthony Rizzo ($3,900). Since 2017, he's knocked righties around for a .405 OBP, .232 ISO, and 143 wRC+. Slugger Kyle Schwarber ($3,100) doesn't offer as well-rounded an offensive profile as Rizzo, but his .278 ISO since 2017 against righties actually bests Rizzo's mark. Both benefit from favorable lineup spots, too.
The shine is off the star for Jason Heyward's ($2,200) bat from his youth. It's almost hard to believe the 30-year-old outfielder swung a well above-average bat in his early years. He's scuffling out of the gates this year, but he did enjoy a modest turnaround with his bat last year against righties. In 469 plate appearances against right-handed pitchers in 2019, he totaled a .365 OBP, .202 ISO, and 115 wRC+.
Perhaps the easiest to overlook Cub for stacks is Ian Happ ($3,000). Happ has most often batted ninth in the lineup this year, but he did slot as high as fifth on Tuesday. He's a wrap-around stack option if he's back at the bottom of the order, and he's a viable option as a standalone play tacked onto one of the other featured stacks. Since reaching the Majors in 2017, Happ's ripped off a .353 OBP, .258 ISO and 123 wRC+ against righties.
Chicago White Sox
The last time I suggested stacking against a rookie pitcher, the Los Angeles Dodgers couldn't muster much offense. It's important to have a short memory in this game, and I'll once again advise stacking against a rookie pitcher.
MLB Pipeline ranks Kris Bubic as the sixth-best prospect for the Kansas City Royals. He doesn't make their top-100 prospect list or top-10 left-handed pitchers list. Bubic's never thrown a pitch in the upper minors and is making the leap from high Single-A to the Majors. The leap alone would be rough, but the Chicago White Sox are a tough lineup for southpaws.
Jose Abreu ($3,100) slots third in the Pale Hose's lineup and is their best hitter against southpaws. Among hitters with a minimum of 400 plate appearances against lefties since 2017, Abreu ranks 16th in OBP (.399), tied for 17th in ISO (.252) and tied with the aforementioned Judge for seventh in wRC+ (164). He's a steal at his salary. Offseason addition Edwin Encarnacion ($3,000) has also terrorized lefties over the last three-plus years, ranking tied for 24th in OBP (.378), tied for 31st in ISO (.231) and tied for 37th in wRC+ (125) among hitters with a minimum of 400 plate appearances against lefties since 2017.
Leadoff hitter Tim Anderson ($3,100) had a breakout season at the dish last year and is raking to open this year. He's a strong stack option. Switch-hitter Yoan Moncada ($3,600) went from a liability against lefties to an asset with a .345 OBP, .201 ISO and 122 wRC+ last year. Either catcher Yasmani Grandal ($2,800) or James McCann ($2,700) are usable as above-average hitters against lefties.
Then there's the outfield duo of sensational sophomore Eloy Jimenez ($3,400) and electric rookie Luis Robert ($3.400). Jimenez has a .199 ISO and 105 wRC+ to his credit in 150 plate appearances against lefties in his young big-league career, and Robert pummeled lefties climbing the minor-league ladder as you can see sorting by splits by year and level on his MiLB player page. The beauty of the affordability of stacking the White Sox is they can be paired with a Yankees or Cubs stack while leaving enough salary to pony up for a stud pitcher, too.
The sample is minuscule, but Taijuan Walker is off to a poor start demonstrating he's a capable big-league starter in his return from Tommy John. He pitched one inning coming back last year for the Arizona Diamondbacks and was knocked around by the Houston Astros for 3 1/3 innings in his first start for the Seattle Mariners this year.
The sample is way too small to normalize batted-ball data, but suffice to say a 29.4 percent line-drive rate and 64.7 percent hard-hit percentage in his appearances last year and this year combined aren't ideal for Walker finding success against opposing hitters.
Enter the Oakland Athletics as his latest test tonight. If Walker's going to continue to serve up rockets, all of the A's are worth a look.
Having said that, the top thumpers in the lineup are who I'm honed in on, starting with Matt Olson ($3,600). Since 2017, Olson's obliterated righties for a .289 ISO, 144 wRC+ and 49.4 percent hard-hit percentage. The "other" Matt, Matt Chapman ($3,700) is no slouch in the power department with a .253 ISO against righties since reaching "The Show" in 2017. He's wasting no time putting that power on display against righties this year, either, with a double, triple, and homer in 23 plate appearances against righties.
Khris Davis ($2,700) is mired in an "0-fer" to start the year with zero hits through his first 17 plate appearances. This comes on the heels of a poor showing at the dish last year. Digging deeper, it's probably premature to give up on him. Last year, he ranked tied for 46th in fly-ball and line-drive exit velocity (95.2 miles per hour), and he has a gaudy 62.5 percent hard-hit percentage so far this year. Walker might be just what he needs to turn things back around and look like good ol' "Krush" Davis.
Marcus Semien ($3,500), Ramon Laureano ($3,400) and Mark Canha ($2,900) are the other three hitters I'd suggest mixing in. Prioritize using both Olson and Chapman and mix and match Davis, Semien, Laureano and Canha with them.
Joshua Shepardson is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Joshua Shepardson also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username bchad50. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.