The Dongers Club – Sat, Aug 22nd


Last night kicked off like it was going to be another high scoring DFS night for everyone but then our horses ended up pushing ahead into the lead.  I haven’t heard from a single person who wasn’t cashing last night and in many cases folks were going extremely high.  Especially those who were using the proper contest selection with their tournaments and raking in 10x to first prizes.

Today is a decent Saturday slate as MLB only has a few early games scheduled and one of which includes a Nationals-Marlins double header so cross off your ability to play Max Scherzer and his 7 inning no hitter today.  Sorry.   Everything locks tonight at 7:05 and we have synchronicity as both sites have the exact same 10 games.  But only one of them has Lord Ryan Mountcastle for the Orioles (c’mon FanDuel, fix your player pool!)



Looks clear again tonight of any PPD but I do see some heavy humid spots with a lack of rain

  • Baltimore (this stands out to me)
  • Chicago & wind is slightly blowing out again
  • San Diego


After Berrios on Thursday and Buehler on Friday we have no doubt made up for ole Ross Stripling earlier this week and we’re tempted to search for the third straight pitcher who has been below his talent level to start the season and watch him come out and have that extremely solid performance today because things happen in three’s.

Unfortunately, that guy is Max Scherzer, who is pitching on the 4:05 early slate and is in a 7 inning game as part of a Double Header & depending upon when I post this and you see this, he’s likely already started and you are wondering why I am wasting space on it.  Well, I just wanted to state for the record that he’s going to pitch all 7 innings today because I don’t think he allows a single hit and strikes out 12 Marlins over 7 innings and we’re all left wondering if it’s a legit no hitter.


On to the Main slate

Zac Gallen

This won’t be a double digit strikeout performance — or it shouldn’t be in my eyes.  But the Giants winning streak coupled with the Diamondbacks losing streak pinpoints this as the obvious D’Backs win play today.  San Francisco has been raking against LHP and I can’t recall exactly who it was I wrote about this similar type of situation recently but whenever a team who is good vs LHP has been facing a bunch of lefties has to go back to RHP they suddenly go into a massive swing and miss shell.  Make sure you pick up Gallen of Zac on your Saturday errands.


Matt Boyd

Ok, I kind of lied above.  Boyd is today’s 3rd leg of the rough start pitcher having a very good outing.  The problem is Boyd is NOT on the level of Berrios and clearly not on the level of Buehler either.  But this is your extremely contrarian play today where as most will be going with Indians and the opposing rookie SP on the other side.  Boyd has strike out ability, there’s no doubting that but his problems stem from giving up too many home runs this year. 

However there is absolutely nothing to indicate any mechanical or injury problems with Boyd as his velocity is fine, his pitch usage is the same and he’s still getting a decent amount of Swinging Strikes compared to prior seasons (slightly down from 2019 but up from 2017-2018).  So who is the real Matt Boyd?  He has allowed 7 home runs over his last three starts and he is getting barreled at an alarming 14% while opponents have a 43% Hard Hit rate on him which is up from his 35% average.  So this is where metrics like that are mis-leading because guess who his last two games were against?  The White Sox.  Yeah.  Those same White Sox you saw win you money against another lefty last night because they are murdering LHP when they square them up.  I know, I know, Boyd had a struggle start in there as well against the Pie-Rats but that was also that very weird high scoring Tigers-Pirates series.  Fact is, Boyd actually turned the corner with his last start against the White Sox where he had a season high 9 strikeouts. 

Today against Cleveland he draws a lineup full of Switch Hitters which mostly flips to their weaker power side and while Franmil Reyes seems to be a no brainer play he also has never seen Boyd before so I think this is a game where Matt Boyd pitches very clean and shuts down an Indians offense which has not been doing it this year consistently.


Jordan Lyles

The Mariners are another team going from a string of LHP to now facing a RHP.  This feels like a blah game with two mediocre offenses at best and Texas should win as Lyles even though not great is better than Sheffield in my view.  The Kyle Seager perceived hot streak clearly was motivation to hit against his brothers team in an effort to get them to trade for him so that Dave Roberts can platoon all 9 batters in their lineup — and I don’t think it’s gonna work.  Poor Kyle, he was the first Seager in the big leagues and yet he has been stuck in Seattle while his younger brother Corey gets to live in L.A….   

Unfair Kyle Broflovski GIF by South Park - Find & Share on GIPHY


Outside of the Box

That would be Matt Boyd today, nothing else to see here.


Guys I am not on.

  • Kyle Hendricks – I don’t want to play him and so I do not want to recommend him.  The fact that Chicago doesn’t walk should help him out and they’re hammering LHP more, but they still have Moncada & Edwin who can destroy RHP right now and the weather remains solid.  I’d rather get a White Sox bat or two than take Hendricks 6 IP and 6 K performance w/ 3 ER.
  • Zack Wheeler – Not in ATL.  Swanson Freeman combo too hard to get past IMO.


Philadelphia Phillies

J.T. Realmuto, Bryce Harper and Phils value kids.

You’re gonna immediately find that you are having a hard time paying for Realmuto if you also go Boyd+Gallen on DraftKings today, but I’ll do my best to walk you through some value positions because I’d try as hard as possible to get Realmuto in today.  He’s hammered Braves pitching in Atlanta over the years and Robbie Erlin sure as heck won’t change that today.  Harper getting a day off yesterday due to being “tired” makes him a fantastic play today as well considering he’s hit more home runs in Atlanta than any other road player and we can take some value fliers with Bohm, Segura, Hoskins or even … gulp … Scott Kingery to get heavy on the Phils today.  Nice warm high scoring game in the ATL tonight.

Arizona Diamondbacks

Marte, Marte, Escobar

Waiting to see what their lineup is as they draw a LHP to start the game but it’s a bad one in Tyler Anderson and we know the Giants bullpen cannot pitch.  So if they can turn the SP around to a RHP then guys like Peralta and Calhoun can still be used if they’re in a favorable top of lineup spot. 


Other Spots to consider


Moncada, Grandal, Baez, Schwarber

Wind is shifting to being out more (closer to 10 MPH) with good temps as well.  Reynaldo Lopez is the more preferable arm to pick on but you know the White Sox continue to mash all throughout their lineup (Moncada, Grandal the best plays on Chi).  For the Cubs it’s natural to look at the lefties like Rizzo and Schwarber to drive the ball out, but Javy Baez should be on your radar if any Cubs exposure is where you go today.

Minnesota vs Kansas City

Kepler/Rosario Polanco, Merrifield, Dozier

This continues to go opposite from last weekend as a higher scoring series.  Big reason for that is KC is drastically hitting better at home and I cannot say big weekend for Whit without writing him up today and again tomorrow as well.  That said, if you recall last time Singer faced the Twins I pointed out how Kepler down and in would get to him and Singer should remember that today which immediately makes me want to play Jorge Polanco assuming he bats second.  I expect the Twins to win 6-5 and I’m fairly certain this is Singer’s first start without Salvy catching him too.  Stay away from the Royals future ace today IMO.

Baltimore Orioles

Renato Nunez, Ryan Moutncastle, Tony Santander

This series is going exactly as expected.  You know there are reasons to look at both teams because the ball will carry in this tiny park with these bad pitching staffs, but because neither lineup is very deep it’s not a case of expecting 12-9 games.  Today could be that exception as I would bet the over in Camden tonight and expect Baltimore to do more of the damage on Boston.  If and when I get good at predicting these new Orioles though I will let you know.  So the guys who stand out to me the most are above and damn you FanDuel for not having Ryan Mountcastle!




  1. J.T. Realmuto … Throw back day on FD where you play C & 1B, if you find yourself playing someone else at C on DK then you are on your own.
  2. Yasmani Grandal


Challenging position today between the two sites because Mitch Moreland is arguably the highest owned player on FanDuel today as he should be in the lineup against HR happy Alex Cobb and is very affordable there.  But Miguel Cabrera not only gives you a little leverage but he’s had a history of slapping around rookie pitchers and at $3100 is someone I don’t mind rolling out tonight.  There’s also super valuable and lefty mashing Matt Davidson if he draws a start for the Reds — but my favorite two plays are Rhys and Yuli in that mid range.  It’s not a great position but there’s lots of choices and they are completely different because of the fact that I’m forcing in Realmuto on DraftKings.   Sorry to be that guy listing lots of 1B options, but I hope it makes sense why in this case and I didn’t even get to Renato Nunez, Jose Abreu, Edwin Encarnacion, Anthony Rizzo.  

SO what am I saying about first base?  Simple.  It’s extremely good and you should play whoever rolls with your main CORE team today.  That’s your first base play of the day.


I told you I would find you the value on DK to fit Realmuto…  This is the position.  Fill it last.

  1. Jose Peraza
  2. Scott Kingery
  3. Nicky Lopez


  1. Yoan Moncada
  2. Hunter Dozier … I swear I did not know it was his Birthday when I wrote him up above…  
  3. Rafael Devers


  1. Javier Baez
  2. Jorge Polanco
  3. Dansby Swanson

OUTFIELD – Mt. Rushmore

Very tough decisions today but you CAN fit Harper+Realmuto on DK and there’s lots of value in those road Tigers….  Just sayin.

  1. Max Kepler
  2. Harper, Bryce
  3. Starling Marte … D’Backs really stand out today, they gotta get to the bullpen though to explode and they only do that if Marte has a good first two AB’s.
  4. Anthony Santander

Outfield – Tier 2

  1. George Springer
  2. Whit Merrifield
  3. Kyle Schwarber

Outfield – Value

  1. Victor Reyes
  2. Jackie Bradley Jr.
  3. Ryan Mountcastle
  4. Adam Duvall
  5. Tim Locastro


  1. J.T. Realmuto – C – Phillies – Chairman of the Dongers Club
  2. Javy Baez – SS – Cubs
  3. Max Kepler – OF – Twins
  4. Hunter Dozier – 3B – Royals (Cheating w/ 3B designation I know because he is playing OF/DH mostly)
  5. Jose Peraza – 2B – Red Sox
  6. Starling Marte – OF – Diamondbacks
  7. Harper, Bryce – OF – Phillies
  8. Miguel Cabrera – 1B – Tigers
  9. BONUS …………………… Yuli Gurriel – 1B – Astros