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DraftKings MLB: Saturday Picks

Juan Carlos Blanco

Winner of the FSWA 2016 Newcomer of the Year Award, Juan Carlos Blanco has been playing fantasy sports for close to 20 years and covers NBA, MLB, and the NFL for, including serving as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' beat writer. He has previously written for and remains an avid season-long and daily fantasy player in multiple sports.


Jon Lester, CHC at CIN ($11,100): Lester should have plenty of motivation Saturday, as he’ll be gunning for the first 20-win season of his career. He draws a Reds team that only sports a .300 wOBA against southpaws, along with a bloated 22.7 percent strikeout rate. Lester has also enjoyed plenty of success against this squad, with a 2-0 record, 1.95 ERA and .194 batting average against in 27.2 innings over four starts this year.

Hisashi Iwakuma, SEA vs. OAK (8,200): Speaking of a pitcher’s dominance over a certain team, Iwakuma checks in with a 4-0 record and solid 3.12 ERA against the A’s over 26 innings, averaging 16.5 fantasy points per game over that span. The A’s also sport the second-lowest wOBA (.302) in the American League against right-handed pitching, and the lowest in the majors over the last seven days (.272), a span in which they’ve been shut out once and managed only one run on four other occasions.


Yadier Molina, STL vs. PIT ($3,900): Molina has been on a tear during the second half of the season, and especially in September, when he’s managed a .371 batting average, .411 wOBA and 33.3 percent hard contact rate over 25 games. He also boasts an impressive .339 wOBA against right-handed pitching, along with double-digit fantasy points in four of his last seven. While Pirates starter Chad Kuhl has been very effective on the road this season, he has yielded a .355 wOBA and 5.82 ERA over his last four starts.


Victor Martinez, DET at ATL ($4,400): The switch-hitting Martinez is in a position to take advantage of Braves rookie starter Aaron Blair, who has allowed a .435 wOBA and seven homers to left-handed hitters, including a .456 wOBA when facing them at Turner Field. Martinez has 20 home runs and a .352 wOBA against right-handed pitching, and he has a .392 wOBA when facing that handedness on the road.


Brian Dozier, MIN at CWS ($4,200): Dozier is the most potent Twins bat have against James Shields, who’s yielded a .385 wOBA, 23 homers and a 38.9 percent hard contact rate to right-handed hitters on the season. Dozier has smacked 31 of his 42 homers versus righties, and he has a .363 wOBA and .264 ISO against them overall. He brings the added bonus of a very favorable history against Shields, whom he’s battered to the tune of a .423/.467/.962 line over 26 career at-bats, a tally that includes three homers and nine RBI.


Jose Ramirez, CLE at KC ($4,800): The switch-hitting Ramirez continues to wield a hot bat, with a .333 batting average and .368 wOBA over his last 26 games. He’s also tallied a .352 wOBA against right-handed pitching overall, while Royals starter Edinson Volquez has given up a .343 wOBA, 11 homers and a 33.7 percent hard contact rate to lefty bats, and a 7.77 ERA and .410 wOBA over his last five starts.


Dansby Swanson, ATL vs. DET ($3,500): Swanson boasts a .333/.515/.904 line over his last 10 appearances, with an average of 8.9 fantasy points per game over that span. He could be in line for more of the same, and at a bargain price at that, against Tigers starter Jordan Zimmermann, who’s surrendered a .363 wOBA to right-handed hitters and yielded 13 earned runs over the 5.2 innings spanning his last three appearances. Swanson has been more impressive overall against southpaws but does sport a robust 43.9 percent hard contact rate against right-handed pitching and .331 wOBA overall at Turner Field.


Byron Buxton, MIN at CWS ($3,900): Buxton is another high-upside bat for tournaments that can be deployed against James Shields, whose extensive struggles against right-handed hitters were detailed earlier. Buxton has seven of his eight homers on the season against right-handed pitching, and a .390 wOBA, .319 ISO, seven homers and 30.4 percent HR/FB rate over his 27 September games. He’s battered White Sox pitching this season, with six doubles, three homers, 10 RBI and an average of 9.6 fantasy points per game over 14 contests.

Mark Trumbo, BAL at NYY ($4,000): Trumbo has hits in four straight, three consecutive double-digit fantasy-point efforts, and homers in two of his last three games. He’s also blasted Yankees pitching for seven homers over 17 games this season and has a .387 wOBA , .302 ISO and a whopping 37 homers against right-handed pitching. Yankees starter Luis Severino has surrendered a .367 wOBA to right-handed hitters, and a 2.30 HR/9 and 30.8 percent HR/FB rate against them at Yankee Stadium, numbers that don’t bode well for a matchup against the majors’ leading home-run hitter.

Kris Bryant, CHC at CIN ($5,200): Bryant has been a massive thorn in the side of Reds pitching all season, with 10 homers, 25 RBI and an average of 16.3 fantasy points per game over 17 appearances. He also has a .390 wOBA against right-handed pitching on the road, along with a 41.5 percent hard contact rate. Reds starter Tim Adleman has given up a .337 wOBA and 5.12 xFIP to right-handed hitters, along with a 42 percent hard contact rate when facing them at home. Hitters have also increasingly been catching up with his pitches as the season has gone on, as he’s yielded a 44.8 percent hard contact rate over his last five starts that’s higher than at any other time this season.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Juan Carlos Blanco plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: jcblanco22, FanDuel: jc_blanco22, DraftPot: jc_blanco22, FantasyDraft: jc_blanco22, OwnThePlay: jcblanco22.