MLB DFS Picks, Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks: Redbirds on the Late Slate (June 20)

Thursday brings a frontloaded afternoon slate with a 1:05 p.m. ET on DraftKings, FanDuel and Yahoo. Before we get to our MLB DFS picks, as always, we will use Stokastic’s tools to help identify today’s MLB DFS stacks, key pitchers and daily fantasy baseball lineups. Look to MacKenzie Gore as the early slate ace, with Andrew Pallante winning the “close your eyes and choose a pitcher” on the late slate. The Coors Field Extravaganza looms large for the featured action, though there are ample pivot opportunities.

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers and Top Stacks | June 20

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers

Main Slate Primary Pitching Target: LHP MacKenzie Gore (WSH vs. ARI)

Nationals vs. Diamondbacks – 4.3 implied runs
First Pitch: 1:05 p.m. ET
$8,900 at DraftKings
$9,600 at FanDuel
$44 at Yahoo

The Stokastic Top Pitchers Tool has been impressed with LHP MacKenzie Gore this season as the young lefty continues to improve his trustworthiness level with each successful start. The Mets got to him for six runs on June 3, with the Blue Jays doing the same on May 5, otherwise Gore has allowed three or fewer runs in each of his remaining 12 starts.


This is far from a slam dunk matchup for Gore, as the Diamondback have been one of the better teams in the league this season against left-handed hurlers. Of course, that is baked into the 4.3 implied run total, though it is worth noting that, in neutral matchups, Arizona has created runs 20% more efficiently than league average, with above-average pop (.163 ISO) and middling strikeouts (20.2%). That said, Gore is on his way to becoming a frontline starter, and the salary is appropriate across the board for this tilt.

Main Slate Secondary Pitching Target: RHP Seth Lugo (KC at OAK)

Royals at Athletics – 3.8 implied runs
First Pitch: 3:37 p.m. ET
$9,500 at DraftKings
$10,500 at FanDuel
$43 at Yahoo

The last three starts have been a little rough for RHP Seth Lugo, who has allowed a 5.21 ERA and 1.21 WHIP in three June starts. To his credit, he did hold the Dodgers to just two runs in Los Angeles on Saturday and allowed a solid four runs in seven innings to the visiting Yankees in the preceding appearance.


Lugo is in his age-34 season, but he is in the midst of a career year after having been converted back to a starter in his lone campaign with the San Diego Padres. Since then in 41 starts — the nine-year veteran has 79 career starts and 237 appearances as a reliever — Lugo has tallied 243.2 innings, a 3.10 ERA, 3.67 FIP and 3.82 xFIP. Though he does not collect a ton of strikeouts, he is still around league average and his efficiency has enabled him to record 28 (68.3%) quality starts.

Oakland has home run risk with the fifth most in the league, but the team is still in the bottom 3 for runs scored. Lugo does a great job limiting power with 1.06 home runs per nine innings for his career, and he has been a tick below that since returning to a starting role.

Late Slate Wild Card Pitching Target: RHP Andre Pallante (STL vs. SF)

Cardinals vs. Giants – 4.2 implied runs
First Pitch: 7:15 p.m. ET
$8,300 at DraftKings
n/a at FanDuel
$28 at Yahoo

The late slate is a crapshoot, as DraftKings and likely FanDuel (contests not posted at the time this article was submitted) are going with the final two games on the docket and Yahoo is reaching forward for the 4 o’clock action. Yahoo including RHP Luis Gill changes the math a little, but we still need to roster a second pitcher there.


Among the choices are rookie RHP Adam Mazur (7.82 ERA, 12.2 innings) facing the visiting Milwaukee Brewers, RHP Keaton Winn (6.66 ERA, 52.2 innings) in St. Louis against the Cardinals and RHP Bryse Wilson (3.84 ERA, 63.1 innings), who got a lot of his good production out of the bullpen, but he has allowed 14 runs in his last 19.1 innings across four starts.

By default, that leaves RHP Andre Pallante as the dog with the lowest number of fleas. Pallante converted over to a starter in late May after getting stretched out in the minors. He spent April as a reliever, so it is better to focus on the results of his four starts. Three were great, allowing one total run in games against Colorado and starts in Cincinnati and in Chicago against the Cubs. The lone blemish was a six-run shellacking in Houston two weeks ago.

Walks are a challenge, with seven in his 17.1 innings as a starter, but he has been decent with 15 strikeouts and has been getting more ground ball than fly ball outs. The Giants are not a horrible offense by any stretch of the imagination, and they are well above the dregs of the league. However, they are still below average, which makes this at least an even matchup for Pallante.

Today's MLB DFS picks, top stacks and pitchers on DraftKings and FanDuel include MLB DFS predictions for key talent like Tanner Bibee...
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MLB DFS Picks: Top Stacks

Main Slate Wild Card Target: Chicago White Sox

White Sox vs. Astros – 4.0 implied runs
First Pitch: 2:10 p.m. ET
Opposing Starter: RHP Spencer Arrighetti
DK Top Stack %: 5.0%
FD Top Stack %: 5.5%

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool has the Dodgers with close to a 30% probability of being the top scoring stack across the main DFS sites. Seattle looks good with a right-laden lineup against LHP Logan Allen in Cleveland, and if CJ Abrams were healthy (wrist MRI today), the Nationals would have made this section over the White Sox.

Heck, even the Houston Astros against RHP Chris Flexen rate well above Chicago, so why the ChiSox? Well, for one, RHP Spencer Arrighetti is coming off the worst start of the season, ceding seven runs and three round-trippers to the Detroit Tigers. The 24-year-old rookie had allowed only two runs in his three prior starts, but he had nine walks in that trio of tilts and now has eight walks in his three June starts. Yes, the strikeouts are still there, but opposing hitters have been able to lay off of most pitches outside the zone. That means they can start sitting on “dead red,” which could lead to more home runs.

Chicago is the worst offense in the league, but we are looking for some differentiation today, so why not accomplish that with some synergistic savings as well? Arrighetti has power issues with batters swinging the stick from both sides of the plate, allowing a .176 ISO to each. That bodes well for Luis Robert Jr., Andrew Vaughn and Tommy Pham, who all boast above-average pop against same-handed pitchers. Gavin Sheets is also an option, as he will be enjoying the platoon advantage. We do not need to go overboard here, but looking for duos, trios or even targeted one-offs for some home run hunting is a savvy strategy. Paul DeJong is a terrific one-off shortstop today, or he could be combined with Vaughn and Robert, who will likely be adjacent to him in the lineup.

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Late Slate Primary Target: St. Louis Cardinals

Cardinals vs. Giants – 4.5 implied runs
First Pitch: 7:15 p.m. ET
Opposing Starter: RHP Keaton Winn
DK Top Stack %: 25.8%
FD Top Stack %: 26.3%

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool has each of the four teams on the featured slate with a similar probability of being the most productive stack. That is what happens when there are four so-so offenses taking on a quartet of less-than-quality pitchers.

RHP Keaton Winn has struggled in his last five starts, which also were split by a trip to the injured reserve with a strained right forearm and one rehabilitation start. in his three outings prior to the injury and two after, he logged 18.2 innings, a solid 8.7 strikeouts per nine innings, a dreadful 4.34 walks and a beyond-horrible 2.41 home runs per nine. That led to a 13.02 ERA, a 6.47 FIP and a 4.73 xFIP. Winn is a top-5 prospect for San Francisco, but with only 58.0 innings at the Triple-A level last year before being called up to The Show, he still has a ways to go on his learning curve.

Look to the lefties first, with Nolan Gorman and Alec Burleson being the first pair in St. Louis stacks. Winn also has had some power issues against same-handed batsmen (.231 ISO, last 122 batters faced), which has Paul Goldschmidt profiling well. Nolan Arenado exited yesterday’s game early with an elbow issue, so he may not be in the lineup tonight. If that is the case, either leadoff man Masyn Winn or outfielder Brendan Donovan can be added into the mix for three- and four-man stacks.

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Once upon a time, Enrique “Kike” Hernandez was someone to target anytime he was in the lineup against lefties. However, the 32-year-old is now several seasons removed from his heyday, so he is someone to pick on in the sports wagering world.

Currently, the veteran of 10 MLB campaigns has +105 odds for the under on his 1.5 total base prop, which is currently available on DraftKings and Hard Rock.

OddsShopper shows this bet has -121 “true odds,” so the +105 odds bring a splendiferous 7.1% expected ROI.



We can also see how crucial it is to shop the odds, as sportsbooks tend to vary wildly with their offerings. This is evident with BetRivers and Unibet all the way down at a punitive -139 and -141, which works out to a negative expected ROI. Be a savvy shopper!

Over his last 231 plate appearances against lefties, Hernandez has a .289 wOBA and a .117 ISO. While one double would crush the hopes and dreams of those going with the under, Hernandez has just three doubles and four home runs in 162 plate appearances, with just five multi-hit games.

Other wagers are continually popping up and disappearing every few minutes as lineups are being announced, which is why it is key to get an OddsShopper Premium subscription to take advantage of all opportunities.

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Final MLB DFS Picks & Thoughts for Thursday, June 20

There are no pressing precipitation concerns for the main slate, but be sure to check in with your favorite MLB Weather Report page closer to first pitch for updates.

Before you finalize your MLB DFS picks, check out today’s Stokastic MLB Live Before Lock Show, at 12:00 p.m. ET brought to you by Sleeper – new users, use this link to receive a $100 first deposit match! Full details here.

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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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