MLB GPP Pivots: Thursday 8.22

Spencer Limbach

Welcome to the MLB GPP Pivots article, where we’ll be looking to uncover some sneaky-good DFS plays away from the popular lifts. These recommendations are usually risk/reward commodities meant to be used in large-field tournaments. Typically, blending these low-owned hidden gems with well-aligned staples contributes to a viable GPP strategy.

Keep in mind that the following player write-ups were constructed earlier in the day, and sometimes injury/rest situations can alter the fantasy landscape. Monitoring our MLB News & Headlines Feed throughout the day will keep you in the loop while giving you the subsequent DFS consequences of each information piece.

We will be looking at the nine-game main slate beginning at 7:05 ET.

PITCHER

Ryan Yarbrough - Tampa Bay (at Baltimore) 

Despite finding himself in a juicy matchup, Yarbrough could be underrated with DFS enthusiasts flocking to big-name pitchers like Gerrit Cole, Max Scherzer, and Mike Soroka. The Tampa lefty has been a sneaky-good fantasy asset this season, holding a 3.34 ERA with 11 wins. He tossed a pair of gems with 15 scoreless innings (6 H, 18 K) against the Tigers and Mariners in his most recent two starts. That momentum could carry into this promising draw against Baltimore, who ranks 23rd in wRC+ with a top ten strikeout rate (23.8%) to boot. 

CATCHER / FIRST BASE

Ji-Man Choi - Tampa Bay (at Baltimore) 

I’m guessing that DFS participants will take one look at Choi’s game log and run in the opposite direction. The Tampa first baseman has gone 2-16 over the last week, which is discouraging at first glance. However, Choi will step into an ideal bounce-back situation against Baltimore LRHP Asher Wojciechowski’s .379 wOBA split to left-handed bats. It’s likely that Choi will hold a premium lineup spot while enjoying a park boost at Camden Yards. 

SECOND BASE

Eric Sogard - Tampa Bay (at Baltimore) 

If you haven’t noticed by now, the Rays make for an interesting tournament stack at Baltimore. I already outlined Orioles’ RHP Wojciechowski’s .379 wOBA split to lefties, and Sogard is in a position to take advantage as well. Choi, Sogard, Austin Meadows, and Kevin Kiermaier complete an encouraging Tampa stack to exploit that vulnerability to left-handed bats. It doesn’t hurt that Oriole Park tends to accentuate left-handed power as well. 

THIRD BASE

Logan Forsythe - Texas (at Chicago White Sox

Forsythe is another player with a discouraging recent game log (4-35) who could realistically reverse his fortune tonight. He’ll step into a comfortable draw against White Sox LHP Ross Detwiler, who carries an inflated .360 wOBA split to right-handed bats over his MLB career. Forsythe is an economical platoon bat with the ability to take advantage. 

SHORTSTOP

Adeiny Hechavarria - Atlanta (vs. Miami) 

Atlanta checks in with the highest run-scoring projection of the night, which could inspire higher-than-usual ownership rates from Freddie Freeman, Ozzie Albies, Ronald Acuna, and maybe even Matt Joyce as a bargain basement option (Josh Donaldson at 3B too). However, we can’t forget about Hechavarria in this spot, who checks in with a near-minimum salary despite racking up three hits, one double, one homer, three runs, and three RBIs over his past three games. The draw looks reasonably good against Miami RHP Sandy Alcantara, who has been up-and-down since the All-Star break. 

OUTFIELD

Eloy Jimenez - Chicago White Sox (vs. Texas) 

You probably know the deal with Jimenez by now. The rookie slugger is who we thought he was: a boom-or-bust fantasy option who could conceivably smack two homers or give your DFS squad a frustrating goose egg. The needle moves in the direction of upside tonight, as the matchup is promising against Texas RHP Ariel Jurado’s .346 wOBA split to right-handed bats. In summary, Jimenez is worth a roll of the dice in tournaments. 

Mike Tauchman - NY Yankees (at Oakland) 

Tauchman was sizzling hot in late-July and early-August, so we know he has that type of fantasy upside in his back pocket. The Yankee outfielder has cooled off over the past week or so, but he could be trending towards another heater with four hits over his last two games. While the park factor isn’t great (at Oakland), Tauchman could jump on this favorable draw against A’s RHP Tanner Roark - who has a .360 wOBA split to left-handed bats over the past two years.