2016 Draft Kit

Draft Kings starting pitchers for Friday May 1

Trying out this new format for the second day in a row.

There’s a lot less busy work with this style. I’m not sure it’s going to be quite as good, but I did have one of my best finishes of the baseball season yesterday.

This new format means I pick and choose who I want to research. I start with pitchers expected to have at least a 7-ish K/9, according to Rotogrinders.

Next I look at opponent strikeouts, win probability and current WHIP vs. projected and career WHIP.

So, for instance, when we see San Diego’s Ian Kennedy with a 1.95 WHIP, but he has a 1.28 WHIP in his career, we can expect that number to correct. This means Kennedy will likely be wrongly avoided by many players because of recency bias. Similarly, when we see Max Scherzer with an unsustainable 0.84 WHIP, we can expect a correction in the other direction.

1. Ian Kennedy, $8,200 — I kind of went over the big ticket on Kennedy up there, but there is more. The Padres are also the sixth-most likely team to win today and the game is in spacious Petco. The Rockies do have a stacked lineup, but all the indicators point to a Kennedy correction so I’ll have him in most of my lineups.

2.  Jon Lester, $9,200 — Sorry, this one’s not helping. The Cubs, Brewers game started at 2:20 p.m. EST today, so it’s already underway. I threw this on here because I want to be on the record that I think he’ll be one of today’s best pitchers. His win, WHIP and strikeout indicators are all off the charts.

3. Matt Harvey, $11,200 — The Nationals have struck out the second most this season and Harvey is primed to take advantage. Harvey is one of the studs today. It shouldn’t take much convincing for you to start him if you can afford him. (Despite what I said in the intro, Max Scherzer is a stud and needs to be considered if you’re filling multiple lineups.)

4. Chris Tillman, $6,100 — I put together two Ian Kennedy and Chris Tillman lineups that are filthy with top-level hitters. Tillman’s WHIP indicates a strong positive correction and the Rays have struck out third most in MLB this season. Tillman’s not a K king but he’s decent enough he could take advantage of the matchup.

5. Roenis Elias, $6,800 — I have to be honest. I’ve never started Elias before, but there are a number of factors in his favor. First, his price is great. Second, the Astros have struck out more than any team in baseball. Third, his personal K/9 may be better than expected. Fourth, his WHIP numbers indicate he should be better. Of course, with that price there are some caveats. He’s a lefty and the Astros have some righty mashers. The game is also in Houston, one of the better pitcher’s parks.

6. Chris Young, $4,500, and Carlos Frias, $4,600 — Like I did yesterday, I’m putting a supreme value at the bottom of the list. Two, actually. Young is the top choice because he’s pitching in Kauffman Satdium. The Royals are also the seventh-most likely team to win today. He doesn’t have huge strikeout potential. Neither does Frias, but the Dodgers are the third-most likely team to win today. Both of these pitchers cost half of what an upper middle-tier pitcher costs. With the money you save you can get just about all of the hitters you want. And, because both of their teams are expected to win, Las Vegas doesn’t expect them to get mashed too hard which means no negative points. If they roll in with 2 or 3 points, whatever, they’re just another outfielder. If you start them the day they have their game of the year, well, ninja, you probably just claimed an MLB tournament victory.

Good luck today and every day.

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