4 Daily Fantasy Baseball Stacks for 8/19/20
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.
Coors Field is the mecca of MLB hitter-friendly parks. In fact, it's not even close. It has a park factor for runs of 1.335, and the next-closest park checks in at 1.096, according to FantasyPros. It also ranks as the second-most homer-friendly venue with a park factor of 1.249 for taters, narrowly eclipsed by Citizens Bank Park's 1.251 park factor for homers. In short, there's basically always a case to be made for stacking there.
Tonight, the case is enhanced by strong middle-tier and value hitters available for gamers to use as well as a mediocre lefty, Framber Valdez, opposing the Colorado Rockies. Valdez has been brilliant this year with a 1.90 ERA in four appearances (three starts) spanning 23 and 2/3 innings, and even his 3.33 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA), per FanGraphs, is quite good. Fewer than 25 innings pitched this year doesn't wash away his ugly 5.86 ERA and 4.75 SIERA in 70 and 2/3 innings in 2019, however.
Since last year, Valdez has allowed a .336 weighted on-base average (wOBA) to right-handed batters. Right-handed hitters Garrett Hampson ($3,200) and Matt Kemp ($3,000) are worthwhile stacking options from the right side of the dish against Valdez, but Nolan Arenado ($4,200) and Trevor Story ($4,500) are the key cogs.
In 283 plate appearances at home against lefties since 2017, Arenado's rocked them to the tune of a .463 OBP, .414 isolated power (ISO), and 201 weighted runs created plus (wRC+). Story hasn't matched Arenado's output against lefties in that time frame, but the shortstop's .403 OBP, .434 ISO, and 168 wRC+ are outstanding as well. Finally, while Charlie Blackmon ($4,500) doesn't hold the platoon advantage like Arenado and Story, it would be a mistake to dismiss him as a stacking option against a lefty at home. In 367 plate appearances against lefties at home since 2017, Blackmon owns a ..433 OBP, .290 ISO, and 160 wRC+.
I much prefer the Rockies to the injury-riddled visiting Houston Astros tonight, but the visitors will be treated to the same delectable hitting conditions. Further, they have an even more exploitable pitching matchup. Ryan Castellani's 1.04 ERA through two starts totaling 8 and 2/3 innings is fluky -- to say the least. He's held opponents to a .059 batting average on balls in play (BABIP) and done so despite some ugly batted-ball data.
FanGraphs credits him with surrendering a 27.8 percent line-drive percentage and crazy 72.2 percent hard-hit percentage. His Statcast data suggests the other shoe is bound to drop soon as well. The gap between Castellani's actual wOBA (.186) and his expected wOBA (.327) is tied for the third-largest negative difference, per Baseball Savant.
Normally, I'd call out specific hitters who I'm targeting in the featured stack. In this case, everyone's on the table as a stacking option from the Astros. Blending an Astros stack around a Rockies or one of the forthcoming stacks is a consideration, with the expectation that Castellani's good fortune is going to run out.
As much as I love a Rockies stack tonight, a Washington Nationals stack is the object in the mirror that's closer than it appears. Opposing starter Kyle Wright has been nothing short of a train wreck at the big-league level. In 40 and 2/3 innings pitched in his young career, he's been torched for a 7.52 ERA and 6.33 SIERA with an identical walk percentage and strikeout percentage of 17.9 percent. The strikeout percentage is well below league-average while the free passes are completely out of control.
He's also allowing hitters to get the good part of the wood on the ball far too often. To that end, Wright's .431 expected wOBA this year is tied for 24th-highest out of 380 qualified pitchers. Further, since last year, lefties and righties have given him fits. Lefties own a .591 slugging and .447 wOBA, and righties have a .352 wOBA against him.
The Nationals are stackable from top to bottom, but Juan Soto ($4,800) is the key piece. He's once again the highest-priced hitter tonight, but with a .500 OBP, .521 ISO, and 268 wRC+ in 56 plate appearances this year, he should be. If Howie Kendrick ($2,700) returns from his absence, he's usable. If he's out and rookie Luis Garcia ($2,300) is starting again, he's a punt at a position where I'm not crazy about the top options tonight. Eric Thames ($2,300) is the same salary and has the type of pop to add to Wright's woes, and table setters Trea Turner ($3,400) and Adam Eaton ($2,600), as well as cleanup hitter Asdrubal Cabrera ($3,400), get value bumps from their great lineup spots.
New York Mets
The New York Mets run it to three straight nights in this space with the Miami Marlins starting another righty, Pablo Lopez, tonight. Lopez is easily the best of the three righties I've suggested stacking against. In fact, I'll have plenty of exposure to him on rosters, but his strong start to the year puts the Mets in the mix as a probable contrarian stack tonight.
Having discussed the bona fides of the Mets' key players yesterday and Monday, I'll direct your attention to those pieces if you need a refresher on the exact statistics I highlighted. The cliff notes version is the Mets have a deep lineup of hitters who punish righties.
Instead, I'll point out the two-fold thought process behind stacking them. First, the benefit of the stack likely being low-owned is less competition at the top of a GPP if they explode. Second, Lopez didn't exactly light the world on fire when he faced the Mets on August 9. In that start, he coughed up just 2 earned runs, but he also allowed 5 hits and 4 walks in only 5 innings. Also, while I avoid batter-versus-pitcher numbers like the plague because the samples are small and largely snake oil as opposed to offering predictive value, I will direct your attention to the fact that his worst start -- by a wide margin -- last year was a 10-run debacle against the Mets. He was chased after only 3 innings and allowed 10 hits, 3 homers, and 2 walks.
The Mets have demonstrated their ability to hang runs in bunches over the last couple of nights against the Marlins, and they did so against this pitcher last May, too. My favorite stacking options from the Mets tonight are Brandon Nimmo ($2,900), J.D. Davis ($2,700), Michael Conforto ($3,100), Robinson Cano ($3,200), and Pete Alonso ($3,700). This isn't a stack I'd recommend to gamers entering just a single bullet or a handful of teams. If, however, you're flirting with or exceeding double-digit rosters in GPPs, fire them up.
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.