4 Daily Fantasy Baseball Stacks for 4/13/16
Stacking can be a controversial topic in many daily fantasy sports, but you can count baseball as a glaring exception. Here, it's universal.
Using multiple players on the same team on a given day presents you with the opportunity to double dip. If one of your players hits an RBI double, there's a good chance he drove in another one of your guys. When you get the points for both the run and the RBI, you'll be climbing the leaderboards fast.
Each day here on numberFire, we'll go through four offenses ripe for the stacking. They could have a great matchup, be in a great park, or just have a lot of quality sticks in the lineup, but these are the offenses primed for big days that you may want a piece of.
Premium members can use our new stacking feature to customize their stacks within their optimal lineups for the day, choosing the team you want to stack and how many players you want to include. You can also check out our hitting heat map, which provides an illustration of which offenses have the best combination of matchup and potency.
Now, let's get to the stacks. Just like last year, we will not be including games at Coors Field here. As you know, you almost always want exposure to a park as conducive to runs as that. You don't need me to tell you that, though. Here are the other teams you should be targeting in daily fantasy baseball today.
The Chicago Cubs are the darlings of the DFS world right now, and our torrid love affair should continue tonight. They're squaring off against the Cincinnati Reds' Alfredo Simon, which means we could be seeing a whole lot more of this.
Got clutch? https://t.co/IxYi7GJRkc
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) April 12, 2016
Simon says the Reds should start someone else today.
The Big Pasta finished last year with a 4.88 SIERA as he struggled to notch strikeouts with a rate of just 14.3%. He paired that with an 8.3% walk rate and 43.6% ground-ball rate to present opposing offenses with high upside and a quality floor. We'll happily take that.
Simon's strikeout rate fell all the way to 12.0% against left-handed batters, so they should be the main focus of our Cubs stacks. None of Dexter Fowler, Ben Zobrist, nor Jason Heyward costs more than $3,800 on FanDuel, and both Fowler and Zobrist are $3,300 or lower. That'll give you some low-cost options to pair with Anthony Rizzo, who figures to be one of the more popular plays on the entire slate.
One of the more surprising aspects of this slate is the low over/under on today's game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Detroit Tigers. An over/under of 7.5 would imply a couple of decent pitchers, but both Ryan Vogelsong and Shane Greene have had their struggles the past few years. We'll side with the Pirates here, though I'd really have no problem with stacking either team. The over/under just makes that a bit more of a concern.
The Pirates get the nod here due to Greene's 4.82 SIERA last year with the Tigers before the team sent him to the minors to finish out the season. He only had a 13.4% strikeout rate to go with a 43.8% ground-ball rate, bringing -- again -- safety and upside. The Pirates may not have the most high-flying offense without Jung Ho Kang, but they should be good enough to exploit that.
Greene wasn't dominant against batters of either handedness, but his ground-ball rate was a good chunk lower against left-handed batters. This makes John Jaso an intriguing pivot off of some other high-ownership first basemen as he'll be batting leadoff for a low price. Be sure not to overlook Gregory Polanco in tournaments, either, as he has drawn 10 walks to only 4 strikeouts in 36 plate appearances on the season.
Boston Red Sox starter Joe Kelly really isn't as bad as last year's 4.82 ERA would indicate (nor this year's 21.00 ERA, obviously. Small sample sizes are fun). Thus is the plight of playing at Fenway Park, especially with the big-bopping Baltimore Orioles in town.
— Baltimore Orioles (@Orioles) April 13, 2016
Maybe next year, Joe.
Kelly's profile is also one that's difficult against a team like the Orioles. He had reverse-platoon splits last year with a 4.25 xFIP against righties compared to 3.92 against lefties. With Manny Machado and Mark Trumbo both swinging the stick from the right-hand side and Chris Davis DGAFing your silly, mortal platoon splits, that's bad news.
Speaking of Trumbo, his price should not continue to be as low as it is. He's batting clean-up for a team that plays in a great park (and is in an even better spot today with the game in Fenway). His 33.4% hard-hit rate last year and 40.3% fly-ball rate both indicate he's a guy with mondo upside, and Kelly's reverse splits make Trumbo a top-tier play for the day.
Los Angeles Dodgers
You've got a pair of opportunities today to go full-on platoon stacks. You can load up on Washington Nationals left-handed bats against Atlanta Braves starter Matt Wisler, or you can bask in the Los Angeles Dodgers' lefties versus Arizona Diamondbacks hurler Rubby De La Rosa. The Dodgers have more left-handed bats at decent spots in the order, so we're going to give them a sniff, but a reconfigured Nationals lineup would also be intriguing.
Left-handed batters have hit .293/.369/.508 with a .378 wOBA against de la Rosa over the course of his career, and his struggles were amped up last year with a 5.15 xFIP. His strikeout rate was a paltry 14.6% with a 9.3% walk rate, and his 41.6% ground-ball rate gave opponents long-ball potential. Dodger Stadium isn't a great park for runs overall, but it is 11th in three-year average home run park factor. That'll work in a matchup like this.
With both Trevor Story and Brandon Crawford playing in Coors, it would be easy for Corey Seager to go a bit overlooked. We shouldn't let that happen. He has now logged 149 career plate appearances, and his hard-hit rate is still an unsightly 39.1%. Putting him up against a guy like de la Rosa who struggles against lefties puts him on an elite level, so keep him at the front of your mind as you're filling out your lineups today.