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MLB DFS Picks Thursday 7/15: Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks Today

Eric MacPherson



Friday, July 15, heralds the upcoming weekend with a 13-game featured slate with a first pitch at 7:05 p.m. ET. Let’s get into the top MLB DFS picks today for pitchers and stacks for DraftKings and FanDuel daily fantasy baseball lineups.

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DraftKings & FanDuel MLB DFS Picks Today (7/15)

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool (Free Today) is a great way to see where the various teams rank against each other from a value, popularity, production and leverage standpoint.

Main Slate: Braves at LHP Patrick Corbin — 5.7 implied runs

While Atlanta “only” had five runs against the Nationals on Thursday, the stack was still productive, contributing three home runs from the key bats that populated the rosters of the Braves Believers. Tonight, they have a matchup against Patrick Corbin, who suffered 10 baserunners across six innings, allowing four to reach home plate.

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Last season, Corbin allowed 37 home runs, which was one shy of Jordan Lyles, who ceded a league-worst 38 round-trippers at a rate of 1.9 home runs per nine innings. In his first seven starts this year, Corbin allowed just one home run. However, he has made up for lost time in his last 11 appearances, allowing 14 long balls across 62 innings. That works out to just over two home runs per nine innings.

Since the beginning of last year, Ronald Acuna Jr., Dansby Swanson, Matt Olson, Austin Riley, William Contreras and Adam Duvall all have a trailing .220 ISO or higher. Enjoy!

Evening Slate: White Sox at LHP Devin Smeltzer — 4.9 implied runs

The Stokastic Top Batters Tool is calling out several of the White Sox at their respective positions with their matchup against Devin Smeltzer. Across his last two starts, the 26-year-old southpaw has allowed three home runs in each appearance. That was against middling competition in the Rangers and Orioles. Chicago’s American League team is the fourth best in the league against lefties, with a 121 wRC+, along with top-10 power marks.

Other than Yasmani Grandal, the ChiSox have most everyone available. They have been firing on all cylinders, winning five of their last seven and averaging 5.4 runs per tilt in this stretch. Jose Abreu (.298 ISO), Luis Robert (.286 ISO), A.J. Pollock (.246 ISO) and Andrew Vaughn (.216 ISO) have hammered lefties over the last season and change. Then there is leadoff man Tim Anderson, who is locked in, with hits in seven of his last eight games. Tonight should be an excellent tournament slate with so many potential paths to glory!

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Late Slate: Padres vs. LHP Madison Bumgarner — 4.4 implied runs

Props to Madison Bumgarner, who has allowed more than four runs only once this season and has held teams to two or fewer runs a dozen times in 18 total starts. Clearly this is only a late-slate recommendation, as there are seven teams in tremendous matchups in the first half of the featured slate. Manny Machado and Jorge Alfaro stand out as the best options from the Padres. If Austin Nola is behind the plate, he has a solid track record when holding the platoon advantage, and Eric Hosmer has eight hits, including four for extra bases in 30 career at-bats against his fellow lefty.

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Top Target: RHP Alek Manoah vs. Royals — 3.0 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $9,000 | FanDuel $9,900

It seems that the DraftKings salary algorithm did not see the news from yesterday when it was announced that Kansas City will be without 10 unvaccinated players for this weekend series in Toronto. Last night, the Blue Jays bats were silent, which allowed the Royals to squeak out a 3-1 victory. Their offense resembled a split-squad spring training lineup at best, so those three runs could very well be the high-water mark of this series.

Alek Manoah is on the short list of pitchers in the conversation for the American League Cy Young Award. While he is unlikely to crack the top spot, his sophomore campaign has been impressive as he makes his final start before the All-Star Break. Manoah is seventh with his 2.34 ERA and his 0.98 WHIP is the 10th best among all qualified starters. He has allowed two or fewer runs in 14 of 18 starts, and his 14 quality starts are behind only the 16 of Framber Valdez.

Secondary Target: RHP Jose Urquidy vs. Athletics — 3.2 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $8,000 | FanDuel $8,600

Jose Urquidy is an excellent SP2 on DraftKings tonight, providing safety with his matchup against Oakland and enough point-per-dollar upside that he works in tournaments as well. Though his salary is higher by comparison, the 27-year-old right-hander has earned the quality start bonus in six of his last seven appearances. This matchup is a reprise of his last start when he cruised through eight innings with 98 pitches while holding the Athletics to just three runs. Though his baseline strikeouts are lacking, the weak opponent helps offset that reduced upside potential.

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Wild Card Target: RHP Brandon Woodruff at Giants — 3.4 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $10,200 | FanDuel $10,000

Salary constraints, exacerbated by a game in Coors Field and a neutral matchup, have landed Brandon Woodruff in the Wild Card bucket tonight. In his three games since missing a month with an ankle issue, as well as losing feeling in the fingertips of the right hand, Woodruff looks to be back at top speed. In his three games, albeit two against Pittsburgh, the strikeout artist has an eye-popping 27 strikeouts against three walks and only four extra-base hits scattered across 17.0 innings. While the Giants best batsmen are all swinging the stick from the left side of the plate, giving them the platoon advantage against Woodruff, the projected lineup has a trailing two-year strikeout rate approaching 30% against right-handed hurlers.

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Additional Opportunities

Zach Plesac is a tough roster in DFS because he does not have the strikeout stuff that would typically enable him to surpass his fantasy salary. However, we can look to him in the player prop market with his 4.5 over/under on his strikeout prop. The Stokastic MLB Projections have him for 5.1 strikeouts, giving him a 67% probability of surpassing the over. He has five or more strikeouts in six of his last nine starts, and the dreadful Detroit lineup has nearly a 25% strikeout rate against right-handed pitching over the last two seasons. If Plesac can close out the sixth inning, which he has done in nine of his last 11 starts, he should be able to cobble together the requisite five punchouts for his backers to win their wagers.

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Other Pitching Options

  1. LHP Robbie Ray at Texas Rangers (Main, Evening)
  2. RHP Ian Anderson at Washington Nationals (Main SP2)
  3. RHP Tyler Wells at Tampa Bay Rays (Main SP2)
  4. LHP Alex Wood vs. Milwaukee Brewers (Late)
  5. RHP Yu Darvish vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (Late)

Other Hitting Options

  1. Juan Soto vs. RHP Ian Anderson (Main)
  2. Teoscar Hernandez vs. RHP Zack Greinke (Main)
  3. Nolan Arenado vs. RHP Hunter Greene (Evening)
  4. Alex Bregman vs. LHP Cole Irvin (Evening)
  5. David Peralta at RHP Yu Darvish (Late)

Final MLB DFS Thoughts & MLB Weather Notes

Other than potential showers for the afternoon game in Wrigley Field, the remainder of the slate looks to be free from any serious precipitation events. We should continue to see heat and humidity increase through the weekend in Cleveland, Minnesota, New York, St. Louis and Washington, which will aid offenses.

Thanks for reading to the end of this article! If you appreciate this free content and want to see more of it every day, you can help us out by sharing this article on social media! Looking for more MLB DFS picks content? We have loads of daily fantasy baseball articles, data, DraftKings and FanDuel cheat sheets and more on the Stokastic MLB DFS home page.

Eric "EMac" MacPherson won the 2007 Fantasy Baseball grand prize (trip for two to the MLB All-Star game) in the Roto format on ESPN. He won again in 2008, this time in the H2H format. As one of the early adopters of daily fantasy sports, EMac has been providing content for baseball and basketball as well as both professional and college football since 2012 for a variety of websites including DraftKings Playbook, FanVice, RotoWorld, Daily Fantasy Bootcamp, and RotoGrinders. He is well into his third decade of fantasy sports and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. Follow him on Twitter @EMacDFS or contact EMac by emailing [email protected].

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