The Longball (Daily HuLo GPP Plays) – August 28, 2017
August 27, 2017 | Doug Shain
Welcome to the Longball (Daily HuLo GPP Plays) for August 28, 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.
I’m a big proponent of playing short slates (Turbo/Late, etc.) and a lot of my HuLo picks are going to play really well on those types of slates. Make sure to keep that in mind when considering full slates and shorter ones.
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.
***Just wanted to throw it out there that I’m going to try to change the format up a little bit for the Longball for the time being. In theory, it will combine my favorite parts of the two formats I’ve used this year: a HuLo chart and then musings on how I construct my sample lineups. The lineups are still not optimal lineups, so don’t mistake them for that, but I think it’s important that you get a closer look into how we can use these HuLo plays to construct the lineups. So instead of spouting off stats that you can easily look up (and don’t worry, I won’t totally avoid stats) I’ll spend my time talking about how to best attack the slate using the HuLo picks. Any feedback is more than welcome.***
Feel free to hit me up on Twitter (@bankster17) to keep the conversation rolling. On to the picks!
|HuLo Pitchers||HuLo Stacks||Sample Lineups|
|Marcus Stroman (TOR/RHP) vs Boston Red Sox: $9.2k DK/$8.9k FD||Philadelphia Phillies @ Lucas Sims (ATL/RHP)||Fanduel: Marcus Stroman ($8900), Jorge Alfaro ($2500), Tommy Joseph ($2800), Jonathan Schoop ($4100), Manny Machado ($4200), Tim Beckham ($3800), Adam Jones ($3300), Nick Williams ($3200), Pedro Florimon ($2200)|
|Jose Urena (MIA/RHP) @ Washington Nationals: $6.7k DK/$6.6k FD||Baltimore Orioles vs Marco Gonzales (SEA/LHP)||Draft Kings : Austin Pruitt ($5800), Corey Kluber ($13100), Martin Maldonado ($2200), Yonder Alonso ($4500), Jose Ramirez ($3900), Ryon Healy ($3700), Francisco Lindor ($4400), Jay Bruce ($4000), Bradley Zimmer ($3600), Khris Davis ($4600)|
|Austin Pruitt (TB/RHP) @Kansas City Royals: $5.8k DK/$5.8k FD||Cleveland Indians @ Luis Severino (NYY/RHP)||Fantasy Draft: Max Scherzer ($27300), Corey Kluber ($25200), Jorge Alfaro ($6000), Pedro Florimon ($5200), Ryder Jones ($4800), Kevin Pillar ($5700), Nick Williams ($6300), Denard Span ($6800), Kendrys Morales ($6800), Jabari Blash ($5700)|
|Mike Montgomery (CHC/LHP) vs Pittsburgh Pirates: $7.1k DK/$6.6k FD||Oakland Athletics @ Andrew Heaney (LAA/LHP)|
|Chalk Pitchers: Corey Kluber, Aaron Nola, Jeff Samardzija, Luis Severino, Max Scherzer||Chalk Stacks: Colorado Rockies, Detroit Tigers, Tampa Bay Rays, Seattle Mariners, Chicago Cubs|
As I sat down to build my lineups I was very aware that, while I liked the value players that I was going to highlight, it was going to be tough to get away from Corey Kluber or Max Scherzer today. As you can see from the sample lineups, I had very levels of success with that. It was easy to fade them on FD where I felt very comfortable with the price on Marcus Stroman. Stroman made my HuLo list today because he’s about a run better per game at home (2.62 ERA vs 3.76 ERA on the road), but lost among that is that the runs he’s giving up are not via the home run. At home he’s only given up 6 HR in 85.2 innings as opposed to 11 HR allowed in only 79 innings on the road. Boston isn’t a huge home run hitting team so this plays well for him. I really like him on all the sites as he presents a potential ownership value. His upside is somewhat limited, but at $8.9k on FD, he doesn’t need to go crazy to return value. I strongly considered going even lower on Fanduel to Samardzija or Nola but felt the increase in price for Stroman was worth the ownership levels that I’d save. It’s not like Shark or Nola have been their past the last few times they’ve taken the hill. As for going even lower than that, I like my value plays today but I was able to comfortably fit in a PHI/BAL double stack so I didn’t see the need to take that plunge. I loved the Orioles on Sunday, and they weren’t that great, but that doesn’t mean I won’t go back to them again on Monday. They’ve got a great matchup against Marco Gonzales (7.40 ERA with 7 HR allowed in 20.2 IP) and I’ll never let one bad game sway me from making a correct pick. You can go up and down the lineup with guys to stack but for me the quartet of Schoop, Jones, Beckham, and Machado worked out best since it allowed me to go with a full four Phillies for my second stack. And yes, I’m back on the Philadelphia again today. When a team is hot, you ride them. I’m not able to afford Rhys Hoskins, which is a shame, but let’s not look past Nick Williams, Pedro Florimon, Jose Alfaro, and Tommy Joseph. They’re not as hot as Hoskins but they’ve picked up their game the last week or so and facing Lucas Sims is a plus for them. They might not score ten runs, and I may regret not finding a way to fit in Hoskins, but I don’t think that this foursome all of the sudden go cold.
For DraftKings I wanted to play a stars and scrubs approach with my pitching. I really wanted to fit in Max Scherzer at $14.1k (especially since he’s not currently listed as a starter which will lower ownership), but to do so would have not allowed me to make the plays in my lineup that I made. It’s not like I can complain about using the KluBot anyway. He’s a monster, and even with a bad matchup in New York, he should be able to approach 10 strikeouts and 7 innings pitched. I’m really not scared off by any matchup against Kluber at this point. His 12.3 K/9 is just all too tasty to pass up, and those K’s have come very consistently. Over his last ten starts he’s struck out eight or more batters 90% of the time. He’s about as safe an option as there can be in MLB. I went back and forth a little bit with whom I should pair him but finally settled on Austin Pruitt over Mike Montgomery (shockingly effective when he starts) and Jose Urena (handled WSH the one time he faced them this year). Pruitt is the cheapest of the three and faced a KC team that I’ve lost all faith in. They got swept this weekend in Cleveland without scoring a single run. I’m not sure that we can project Pruitt to give up no runs today but five solid innings with maybe a K per inning seems like a reasonable projection (a combination he’s hit twice in his last six starts, but none were against this struggling KC offense). At $5.8k, that’s awesome. Give 12 DK points buddy and we are gold! For my bats I think I want to go back to using the Indians against a top level pitcher. They crushed Chris Sale last week and I think they do the same against Severino. He’s about two runs per game worse at home (4.14 ERA vs 2.32 ERA on the road) and he gives up significantly more HR at home as well (1.3 HR/9 vs 0.6 HR/9 on the road; more than double). They’re playing at an extremely high level and we are going to use that to our advantage. I prefer to play the platoon advantage with their lefties but I can’t fault you for looking at guys like Encarnacion or Santana either. I considered double stacking the Indians with the A’s but really didn’t like how that shook out. I couldn’t use Marcus Semien with Lindor in my lineup so I decided to just use a mini-stack of Khris Davis and Ryon Healy against Andrew Heaney. With a game at Coors today, guys from teams like Oakland are going to be overlooked. Yonder Alonso, a former Athletic, is finding his groove now in Seattle and he’s got a great matchup against Chris Tillman. I have no issue with you going with a bigger stack from Seattle if the mood hits you.
As for my Fantasy Draft lineup, I basically did that to show you that it is possible to pair up Scherzer and Kluber with a lineup that’s not completely devoid of upside. Do I love the idea of using Ryder Jones and Kevin Pillar? Of course I don’t but they both should play and each one has a relatively strong matchup. I was able to get a couple of Phillies in there as well, which made me happy. Denard Span was a real value in this lineup since he hits in a good spot in the Giants order and gets to face Jhoulys Chacin, who has been torched by the Giants this year. I don’t love this lineup at all, but I think it’s important to show what lengths we have to go if we want to stack the top to pitchers on a slate like this. I’m very interested to see how this lineup shakes out.
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.