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MLB DFS Picks, Top Stacks & Pitchers: Sneaky Brewers Stack vs. Ryan Yarbrough & Shohei Ohtani vs. A’s (August 9)

Eric MacPherson



Free MLB DFS picks today from Stokastic fantasy baseball projections and rankings, and the best lineups & value targets for DraftKings & FanDuel 8/9.

Tuesday, Aug. 9, has a robust 14-game main slate starting at 7:05 p.m. ET. Keep an eye on the weather, as there are a few potential trouble spots in the Mid-Atlantic region. 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 (8/9)

Main Slate: Mets vs. LHP Mike Minor — 5.7 implied runs

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool is liking the Metropolitans, even after they let everyone down last night with “only” five runs. The Blue Jays are also near the top of the list, though with the weather concerns in Baltimore, they do get knocked down a peg — even against the dreadful Kyle Bradish (6.55 ERA, 1.65 WHIP and 12 HRs in 56.1 innings).

There also is some precipitation risk in New York, but it looks like the worst-case scenario would be an in-game delay, which should not impact the hitters. Mike Minor has been a mess in his age-34 season, allowing a 6.19 ERA, 1.57 WHIP and an eye-popping 2.53 home runs per nine innings. Starling Marte is locked in right now, and he is a primary target, along with Pete Alonso and his light-tower power. Recent acquisition Darrin Ruf has nearly identical numbers to Alonso against lefties, though he is a pinch-hit risk for Daniel Vogelbach if a right-handed reliever comes in from the bullpen. There is no such risk for switch-hitters Francisco Lindor and Edwardo Escobar, and Mark Canha should be safe at the hot corner as well.

Evening Slate: Brewers vs. LHP Ryan Yarbrough — 4.5 implied runs

The Brew Crew are flying under the radar, with a Coors Field Extravaganza also taking place on the same sub-slate. Tampa Bay will be starting the game with a right-handed opener in Jimmy Yacabonis before turning things over to lefty Ryan Yarbrough as the bulk reliever. Rowdy Tellez is always a pinch-hit risk, as he does not draw many starts against southpaws and likely would be in a lefty-lefty situation for his second and third at-bats. Fortunately, the rest of the key Brewers who are left-handed are also Christian Yelich and Kolten Wong, who are needed to field their respective positions. Hunter Renfroe, Andrew McCutchen and Willy Adames all have had sustained success when holding the platoon advantage and are nice pivots away from the Cardinals and Rockies on the evening slate.

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Late Slate: Diamondbacks vs. RHP Zach Thompson — 4.9 implied runs

Thus far, Zach Thompson has profiled a ceiling as an innings eater. This year, his strikeouts have dipped below that of his rookie campaign, and since he will be turning 29 later this fall, there is not much room for improvement. In his last three starts, he has allowed either a pair of home runs or seven earned runs. To his credit, he is gamely taking the mound every time his name comes up and regularly throwing 90 pitches. That, however, is the only silver lining that can be found.

The Stokastic Top Batters Tool is liking the batters swinging the stick from the left side of the plate. Arizona will be running out a lineup loaded with lefties, and the focus should be on Alek Thomas, Dalton Varsho and, of course, switch-hitter Ketel Marte, who all have above-average power when holding the platoon advantage.

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Primary Target: RHP Shohei Ohtani at Athletics — 2.8 implied runs

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

There are several tantalizing pitching options in action on Tuesday, so there should be no need to force in any one particular hurler. Shohei Ohtani received a day off on Monday, so he should be refreshed and ready to go in this cherry matchup with the Athletics. Oakland is expecting game-time temperatures in the mid-60s with an 8 to 10 mph breeze out to centerfield. The A’s projected lineup has a whopping 27.3% strikeout rate over the last two season against right-handed pitchers.

Ohtani has made just 18 starts, yet he ranks seventh with 152 strikeouts and his 13.0 strikeouts per nine innings would be leading the league if he had enough innings to qualify for the leaderboard in that category. In this same matchup last Wednesday, Ohtani had a strong 5.2 innings with only two earned runs and a solid seven strikeouts. Most pitchers would be thrilled with that stat line; however, it was actually somewhat disappointing, as it ended Ohtani’s double-digit-strikeout streak at six games.

Secondary Target: RHP Shane Bieber at Tigers — 3.1 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $9,400 | FanDuel $10,200

This will be the fourth time this season that Shane Bieber has faced Detroit, though it has been a month since the last matchup. The Tigers have a 70 wRC+ against right-handed pitching, which means they are creating runs 30% less efficiently than league average after different variables such as park factor and defense have been neutralized. In the three preceding tilts, Bieber has tallied 21 strikeouts across 20.2 innings with a 3.48 ERA and 1.26 WHIP. Against his last 900 batters faced, the 27-year-old hurler has a 28.6% strikeout rate, while the projected Detroit lineup is a 24.5% over the same time frame. Zack Wheeler taking on Miami would be a solid pivot, though Philadelphia does have potential weather issues.

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Wild Card Target: RHP James Kaprielian vs. Angels — 3.2 implied runs

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $5,600 | FanDuel $7,400

James Kaprielian has been mentioned as a pitcher to stack against in this article several times this season. However, circumstances and variables are always changing in DFS, which often leads to most questions receiving an answer of “It depends …” or “Tell me more …” in order to pin down a probability of an outcome. Tonight there is no real need to consider Kaprielian on FanDuel, full stop. DraftKings is a different story, where he is a $5,600 pitcher on a Coors Field slate while also facing the Anaheim lineup that would get a hat tip from most wind farmers. The Halos are running out a lineup that has a two-year-trailing strikeout rate against right-handed pitchers that is approaching 30%. Take the savings, grab a couple of Coors Field bats and roll the dice that Kaprielian can produce something in the 12- to 15-fantasy-point range on DraftKings while one of your hitter upgrades puts up similar numbers.

Additional Opportunities

Shane Bieber should be well represented in our DFS lineups, but we can also look to hedge against his 7.5 over/under strikeout prop. The Stokastic MLB Player Props Tool has him for 6.3 strikeouts and a 71% chance of failing to reach the eight strikeouts needed for the over. Bieber does have exactly eight strikeouts in each of his last two starts, but he has had eight or more in just five of his 20 appearances.

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Other Pitching Options

  1. RHP Zack Wheeler vs. Miami Marlins (Main, weather concerns)
  2. RHP Alek Manoah at Baltimore Orioles (Main, weather concerns)
  3. RHP Marcus Stroman vs. Washington Nationals (Evening)
  4. RHP Gerrit Cole at Seattle Mariners (Late)
  5. RHP Luis Castillo vs. New York Yankees (Late)

Other Hitting Options

  1. Lourdes Gurriel at RHP Kyle Bradish (Main)
  2. Matt Vierling vs. LHP Braxton Garrett (Main)
  3. Coors Field Extravaganza (Main, Evening)
  4. Juan Soto vs. RHP Alex Cobb (Late)
  5. Jose Miranda at LHP Julio Urias (Late)

Final MLB DFS Thoughts & MLB Weather Notes

The East Coast matchups all have the potential for in-game precipitation, with the elevated heat and humidity causing thunderstorms in Baltimore, Boston, New York and Philadelphia. Keep tabs on the forecasts for these venues, with the current outcomes ranging from non-issue to potential postponement.

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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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