The Longball (Daily HuLo GPP Plays) – April 20, 2017
April 19, 2017 | Doug Shain
Welcome to the Longball (Daily HuLo GPP Plays) for April 20, 2017. For those of you that don’t know me, my name is Doug Shain and I’ve been a part of The Fake Sports team for the last three years (NHL, NFL, MLB). I’ve been playing season long fantasy for over 25 years and DFS for the last 5 years. Besides being blessed with the job to write for this site, I’m pretty much just like the rest of you. I’m a teacher that likes to play DFS as a way to relax and maybe make some money along the way. I don’t really look at cash games and I’m not terribly interested in min-cashing a GPP. I want the big money. Because of this, I tend to have a high level of variance in my play. I know that I have to take some risks with my lineup in order to move up in a field of thousands of players.
Over the course of my time at the Fake Sports I’ve come be known as the HuLo guy. HuLo is a term I invented (fine, my dad came up with it) that means High Upside, Low Ownership. It’s similar in concept to a contrarian play. With the way that I play DFS, and the way that most of the general public plays DFS, we are going to have to find a few HuLo plays along the way to take down a GPP.
For this year’s version of this article I’m going to try to put a strong emphasis on some of the more overlooked plays of the day instead of just firing chalk at you. I want this article to give you a different perspective on your lineups instead of being a blueprint of how to make lineups (we’ve got Cheat Sheets for that). I’ll be sure to reference the chalkier plays each day but the main focus is going to lean heavily towards the HuLo end of the spectrum.
One big thing to keep in mind with this refocused philosophy – HuLo plays are far from a sure thing so we are going to miss more than we hit, but when we do hit we should hit big. To be clear, I’m not advocating that you use a solely HuLo lineup. I’m merely giving you something more to think about; plays that can supplement the chalk that you are going to use in your lineups.
Feel free to hit me up on Twitter (@bankster17) to keep the conversation rolling. On to the picks!
***These plays are NOT ranked in order of preference***
|HuLo Pitchers||HuLo Stacks||Sample Lineups|
|Aaron Nola (PHI/RHP) @ New York Mets: $8.5k DK/$7.9k FD||Atlanta Braves vs Stephen Strasburg (WSH/RHP)||Fanduel: Aaron Nola ($7900), Chris Iannetta ($2600), Freddie Freeman ($3500), Jonathan Villar ($2900), Eugenio Suarez ($3800), Zack Cozart ($3200), Nelson Cruz ($3800), Adam Duvall ($3700), Yasmany Tomas ($3400)|
|Patrick Corbin (ARI/LHP) @ San Diego Padres: $5.8k DK/$6.9k FD||Milwaukee Brewers vs Carlos Martinez (STL/RHP)||Draft Kings: James Paxton ($9600), Danny Duffy ($8200), Chris Iannetta ($2700), Freddie Freeman ($4400), Jonathan Villar ($4500), Eugenio Suarez ($3700), Zack Cozart ($3600), Yasmany Tomas ($3900), Bryce Harper ($5000), Adam Duvall ($4400)|
|Danny Duffy (KC/LHP) @ Texas Rangers: $8.2k DK/$9.4k FD||Cincinnati Reds vs Wade Miley (BAL/LHP)||Fantasy Draft: James Paxton ($18400), Patrick Corbin ($11600), Paul Goldschmidt ($10000), Freddie Freeman ($8700), Robinson Cano ($8700), Chris Davis ($9200), Adam Duvall ($8700), Yasmany Tomas ($7800), Eric Thames ($7600), Manny Machado ($9000)|
|Chalk Pitchers: Noah Syndergaard, Stephen Strasburg, James Paxton||Chalk Stacks: Baltimore Orioles, Washington Nationals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Seattle Mariners|
Aaron Nola (PHI/RHP): The season long numbers on Nola don’t look all that impressive (3.27 ERA/1.36 WHIP) but there is a lot about what he’s done that has me thinking he’s the guy we all thought he was when he was a top prospect for Philly and not the guy we saw getting rocked last year. The three stats that impress me the most with Nola are a 13:2 K to BB ratio, a 19:5 ground ball to fly ball ratio, and ZERO home runs allowed. He’s not putting guys on base, batters aren’t getting the ball in the air, and what does get into the air isn’t leaving the ballpark. Add in that 10.64 K/9 and you’ve got a recipe for a really successful season. The Mets are batting a league worst .191 against RHP this season with a healthy (for their opponents) 27.9% K-rate. There arrow is pointing way up for Nola tonight, and his ownership should be very low with people favoring Noah Syndergaard in this matchup.
Patrick Corbin (ARI/LHP): On a larger slate I might not look towards Corbin but with only seven games on the docket he might be a guy worth taking a long look at as your SP2 on Draft Kings and/or Fantasy Draft. He’s priced way down on both of those sites and he’s facing a Padres team that struggles against LHP. There’s not a ton to like about his season long stats as he’s walked as many batters as he’s struck out. He’s been very lucky to only give up 5 ER this year, although that luck might hold for one more start. The Padres have a .190 BA with only 8 XBH against LHP all season and it’s not like Petco Park is going to do them any favors. At $5.8k on DK, you really don’t need more than a start of 5IP/4K/2ER with a win to hit value (ARI should give Corbin some decent run support). If you want to afford some big bats, Corbin is a guy you can pair with Syndergaard or Paxton (I really don’t love Strasburg tonight) to help with that; just make sure you temper expectations because Corbin is more a guy who won’t lose you a GPP rather than one who will win you a GPP.
Danny Duffy (KC/LHP): I kind of went back and forth between Duffy and Paxton for this last spot but with the quality of opponent factored in (Duffy vs TEX as opposed to Paxton vs OAK), I think Duffy is going to be the lower owned of the two. Duffy is a little pricey and a little risky, Texas is no walk in the park to pitch against, but boy has he looked great this year. He has 17K in 20IP, has only given up 2 HR, and has kept his walks to a reasonable level (7 total BB this year). I’d like to see his ground ball to fly ball ratio more in line with what he did in his second start (13:4) rather than his other two starts (combined 10:15). If he can keep the ball down then he can keep the ball in the park. The Rangers have really struggled against LHP this year with a 1.75 BA, only 6 XBH, and a 33% K-rate. All those numbers lead to an upside of 7IP/10K, which is really nice. It wouldn’t shock me if Duffy was one of the two or three highest scoring pitchers on this slate. I have issue with you using him as your only SP on Fanduel or as an SP1 on DK/Fantasy Draft.
Atlanta Braves: The Braves aren’t putting up a ton of runs but that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a productive stack with them. Freddie Freeman, Nick Markakis, and Ender Inciarte continue to put up the numbers are a very reasonable price (ok, Freeman isn’t cheap but when he’s combined with the other two the total cost isn’t bad). I probably won’t go with more than three players in this stack and might even just go mini-stack with Freeman/Markakis. I’m not a big believer in Strasburg on the road and he does struggle with some of these Braves hitters. Freeman is particularly good with a .400 BA and 7 XBH in 35 at bats against Strasburg. If you want a sneaky play tonight you can always look to Adonis Garcia and his .462 BA against Strasburg in 13 career AB.
Milwaukee Brewers: I tweeted yesterday that I was worried about people getting mad at me for continually writing about the Brew Crew but as long as they keep hitting, I’m going to have to keep talking about that. I know that Thames is far from HuLo (he’s totally Hu but not at all Lo) but with a lot of other big stacks on the board I think the ownership is going to be reasonable all around. One bat I’m really interested in looking at is Jonathan Villar. He’s been so bad this year that his ownership should be next to nothing. He was 1 for 5 yesterday with an RBI so it’s possible that he’s slowly starting to come around. With Carlos Martinez, and his high walk rate, on the hill it’s quite possible that Villar can get on base and do some damage with his legs. For his career Villar is hitting .308 with 2 SB in 13 AB against CMart. Another name to keep an eye on (other than Braun, of course) is whoever ends up catching for the Brewers. Both Jeff Bandy and Manny Pina are white hot and neither one of them will end up widely owned.
Cincinnati Reds: I’d like to remind everyone that this is a seven game slate with a large number of appealing stacks. That makes it very hard to find reasonable HuLo stacks for tonight. Cincy might not even be that low owned with Wade Miley on the hill but I’m going to go in a different direction than I normally do with the Reds. For today I’m not looking at the top of the order but instead I’m focused on Adam Duvall, Eugenio Suarez, Zach Cozart, and Tucker Barnhardt. That would be four righties facing the lefty Miley. Using this stack gets you the benefit of facing Miley while not being exposed to high ownership that will be seen by Billy Hamilton and Jose Peraza (and possibly Joey Votto).
Other names to consider:
Freddy Galvis (PHI/SS): Galvis isn’t too high on my list of guys I want to use but he does have 3 XBH in 11 AB against Noah Syndergaard in his career. Using him not only saves you some cap space but it gives you exposure against one of the chalk pitchers on the night. If Galvis is able to do some damage then you get a double whammy, and if he doesn’t it won’t cost you too much to have attempted that type of play.
Jayson Werth (WSH/OF): I’m of the philosophy that you can either hit the knuckleball or you can’t. Jayson Werth apparently can as he’s batting .481 with 5 XBH in 27 AB against RA Dickey in his career. He left yesterday’s game early so it’s questionable if he’s playing today. Obviously you should check the lineups before you put him in yours.
Hector Sanchez (ARI/C): It’s unlikely that Sanchez will even play (I don’t see why Arizona wouldn’t use Iannetta) but if he does, he has a .538 BA with 2 XBH in 13 AB against Patrick Corbin and is basically min-priced across the industry.
Mike Napoli (TEX/1B): I happen to really like Danny Duffy tonight but if you’re not going to use him then Napoli makes sense at 1B with his .800 career BA against Duffy. Yes, I know that 5 AB is a small sample size but Napoli has 3 XBH out of his 4 hits against Duffy and that’s more than enough for me to take a flier on him in this matchup.
Early Slate Musings:
I think the best way to attack the early slate is to not only fade Chris Sale but it’s to stack against him. The Blue Jays are starting to come alive a little bit, particularly against LHP. Sale has been known to hiccup now and again and this is the perfect spot to take a shot against him. If you use Sale and he does great, good for you, you get to split your winnings with 60% of the field. If you stack against him and he falters, truly good for you, you just crushed a GPP. The exact same thinking is at play with the Cleveland Indians. They should be a chalky stack so I’m going to not only fade them; I’m using a scorching hot Ervin Santana against him (with the thought that we can get him at 20% owned or less).
Draft Kings (early): Lance McCullers ($9800), Ervin Santana ($8200), Derek Norris ($2800), Kendrys Morales ($3500), Jose Altuve ($4900), Evan Longoria ($4200), Troy Tulowitzki ($3700), Steven Souza ($3600), George Springer ($4700), Jose Bautista ($4200)
Fanduel (early): Lance McCullers ($8900), Derek Norris ($2400), Miguel Cabrera ($4100), Jose Altuve ($4200), Evan Longoria ($3000), Troy Tulowitzki ($2800), George Springer ($4300), Steven Souza ($2900), Rickie Weeks ($2200)
Come play me in a free game over at Fantasy Draft for bragging rights.
Your feedback is always welcome. You can find me on Twitter @bankster17.