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MLB DFS Picks Friday 7/22: Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks Today

Eric MacPherson

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Friday, July 22, kicks off the weekend with a 13-game featured slate locking at 7:05 p.m. ET first pitch. 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 (7/22)

Main Slate: Orioles vs. RHP Jameson Taillon — 4.1 implied runs

Camden Yards should see game-time temperatures in the low-90s, with medium humidity and a 7 to 12 mph breeze out to centerfield. That should help mitigate the recent offseason renovations that have dampened what used to be one of the most hitter-friendly ballparks. Salary is key in this matchup, as only Cedrick Mullins ($4,600) exceeds the $4,000 salary threshold on DraftKings.

Jameson Taillon has solid season-long statistics with a 3.86 ERA and 1.13 WHIP, but his last five starts have been messy. In 27 innings, he has allowed eight home runs and an unsightly 7.00 ERA despite only three walks. In this stretch, he has squared off against Boston twice and Houston once, though Pittsburgh and Oakland should have been gimmies. The Batters of Birdland are not getting enough credit for their midseason turn around. They are now ranked in the middle of the pack against right-handed pitching and have top-10 power.

Mullins, Anthony Santander, Ryan Mountcastle and Austin Hays are the primary targets, and Baltimore makes for an intriguing complementary stack that will not break the bank. Rookie catcher Adley Rutschman took a little time to become acclimated to pitching in The Show, but the switch-hitter has more than held his own against righties, with 19 extra-base hits in 122 at-bats for a .246 ISO while striking out only 15.6% of the time.

Evening Slate: Brewers vs. RHP Antonio Senzatela — 4.5 implied runs

This has been a rough season for Antonio Senzatela, who appears to be broken, for lack of a better descriptor. Though the home runs allowed have been solid, the ground-baller is at or near career lows in strikeouts, ground balls, ERA, xERA and WAR, while his walk rate is at a three-year high. While it feels like he has been in the league forever, he is only 27 years old and could still work out of this funk. Additionally, Senzatela is coming off the injured list after missing the last three weeks. He was solid in a Triple-A rehabilitation outing, and the Rockies intentionally held him out through the All-Star Break for additional rest.

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The Milwaukee offense is loaded with power options and leading the way is Rowdy Tellez, who is a strong home run option despite facing a ground-ball specialist. Willy Adams and Hunter Renfroe both profile well in this same-handed matchup and, of course, Christian Yelich and Kolten Wong are strong options when they have the platoon advantage. Jace Peterson is the punt du jour, and Omar Narvaez is solid on DFS sites that require a catcher to be on each roster.

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Late Slate: Astros at LHP Marco Gonzales — 4.1 implied runs

Naturally Stokastic Top Batters Tool is easily charmed by Houston whenever the opposition is rolling out a subpar southpaw. Marco Gonzales has had an outstanding season, and he should be considered one of the craftiest lefties in the game. However, he simply does not generate strikeouts, which is the first ingredient on the list for this recipe of looming disaster.

In his last 18.2 innings, the 30-year-old hurler has a mere six strikeouts. Even more dire, across his last 15 starts, spanning 86.2 innings, he has tallied only 40 whiffs. Though looking at batter versus specific pitcher data is mostly folly, the Astros are no stranger to Gonzales. Collectively, in 181 at-bats, mostly from hitters who will be in the lineup tonight, the ‘Stros have compiled a .266/.308/.474 triple slash line with just 21 strikeouts and 23 extra base hits.

Focus on the right-handed batsmen first, with Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yulieski Gurriel and catcher Martin Maldonado being the core four to covet. Depending on their lineup slot, Aledmys Diaz, Mauricio Dubon and Chas McCormick can be mixed in for discounted differentiation. Of course, Kyle Tucker and Yordan Alvarez are stellar in same-handed matchups, and youngster Jeremy Pena is also worth a look, particularly on FanDuel at just $2,900.

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Primary Target: RHP Corbin Burnes vs. Rockies — 2.5 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $10,200 | FanDuel $11,300

This is an easy recommendation, as Corbin Burnes currently sits in the top five with his 2.14 ERA, 0.90 WHIP and 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings. That should not be much of a shock, as we are talking about the reigning National League Cy Young Award winner. There is no salary discount for Burnes tonight, though there also is no lower opposing run total than the 2.5 of the Rockies. Colorado is a bottom-five team against right-handed pitching by most standard and advanced metrics, so do not dwell too long on this decision — just roster Burnes in all formats.

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Secondary Target: RHP Max Scherzer vs. Padres — 3.1 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $10,400 | FanDuel $11,500

The All-Star Break has allowed the aces for most teams to be synched up, and we should see some excellent pitching opportunities through the weekend. Since returning from a layoff that spanned nearly two months, Max Scherzer has been sublime. In his three starts, he has tallied a 1.40 ERA with 31 strikeouts against one home run across 19.1 innings. San Diego has been a middling offense this season and clearly is not as strong as last year when Fernando Tatis Jr. was healthy. While Burnes does get the slight edge, Scherzer is far from a consolation prize as a DFS building block tonight.

Wild Card: RHP Charlie Morton vs. Angels — 3.2 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $8,800 | FanDuel $9,800

Mike Trout (ribs) has joined Anthony Rendon on the injured list, and the Angels lineup is looking rather thin after Shohei Ohtani and Jared Walsh. Clearly Charlie Morton’s best days are well behind him, but his 10.4 strikeouts per nine innings are near his career best and the 38-year-old still induces plenty of weak ground balls that his infielders can handle with ease. Though the win equity is low with Ohtani pitching for the Halos tonight, Morton is an excellent SP2 on DraftKings for his reasonable salary.

Additional Opportunities

Charlie Morton looks intriguing in the player props market tonight, with a 7.5 over/under on his strikeout prop. The Stokastic MLB Projections have him for 8.2 strikeouts, giving him a 67% probability of surpassing the over. Morton has notched eight or more strikeouts in five of his last eight starts, with 6, 7 and 5 in the other three outings. If he can close out the sixth inning, he should do so with this wager in hand.

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Other Pitching Options

  1. LHP Braxton Garrett at Pittsburgh Pirates (Main)
  2. RHP Shohei Ohtani at Atlanta Braves (Main)
  3. RHP Drew Rasmussen at Kansas City Royals (Evening)
  4. RHP Jose Urquidy at Seattle Mariners (Main SP2, Late)
  5. RHP Zac Gallen vs. Washington Nationals (Late)

Other Hitting Options

  1. Nick Castellanos vs. LHP Justin Steele (Main)
  2. Jorge Soler at LHP Jose Quintana (Main)
  3. Ji-Man Choi at RHP Brad Keller (Evening)
  4. Eloy Jimenez vs. RHP Cal Quantrill (Evening)
  5. Ketel Marte vs. LHP Patrick Corbin (Late)

Final MLB DFS Thoughts & MLB Weather Notes

Tonight should be relatively free from any precipitation problems. Keep an eye on Atlanta, where the default forecast for the next 10 weeks will be “potential humidity showers in the area,” though unless anything camps out over Truist Park, there should be no major challenges. The Mid-Atlantic region also has a low likelihood of rain, but Baltimore, Boston, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia have just enough humidity to make a brief mention as venues to give a cursory look at just before first pitch.

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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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