The MLB Yahoo Cup Hot Corner: Round 7

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Welcome to the MLB Yahoo Cup Hot Corner! This free-to-enter, single-entry contest consists of 27 rounds where the top 1,075 overall entries and the top 70 entries per round share $10,000, with $1,000 to first and $50 to first per round. Scoring will be cumulative across all rounds, with your seven lowest scores dropped at the end. You may join this multi-round MLB DFS contest at any point, but enter today to give yourself the best chance to take home the title. Click here to begin the chase!

Let’s focus on three players — one pitcher, one infielder and one outfielder — as our MLB DFS picks to slot into lineups for today’s Yahoo Cup and MLB Baller contests.

MLB DFS Pitcher: Trevor Rogers — $46

Coming off a surprise playoff appearance in the shortened 2020 season, the Marlins are proving to be competitive once more. While a 14-16 record doesn’t look all too impressive, they are merely two games back in the National League East. This placement is due largely in part to their stellar pitching staff, which currently sports the fifth-best ERA in all of Major League Baseball through 30 games. And with stellar starters such as Trevor Rogers coming out of the gate hot, it’s pretty easy to see why.

Rogers was the 13th pick of the 2017 MLB draft, and after an abysmal first seven starts of his career in 2020, he has settled in nicely in 2021. Sporting a high spin rate on his fastball and a deceiving release point, Rogers has increased his swinging strike rate up 16.5% this season, up 3.5% from last year. And despite giving up slightly more hard contact through six 2021 starts than last year, his 1.06 WHIP and 3.30 xFIP are such stark improvements that it’s hard to care.

To top it all off, Awesemo’s Top Pitchers tool pegs Rogers as one of the top two scoring pitchers on the slate 28% of the time despite his projection to appear in only 29% of the field’s lineups. For MLB DFS purposes, -1.0 is negligible negative leverage, as it’s rare to have an elite pitcher with this type of upside not being rostered significantly more. That makes Rogers the best pitching option on the board to utilize in MLB Yahoo Cup lineups against a Brewers team striking out at the fourth-highest clip in baseball.

MLB DFS Infielder: Yasmani Grandal — $15

The White Sox were dealt a difficult hand this season, as Eloy Jimenez tore his pectoral muscle climbing a wall in spring training, and now fellow outfielder Luis Robert tore his flexor. Those are two big bats to be missing in a lineup on a nightly basis, and yet the White Sox haven’t missed a beat, jumping out to a 16-13 start. This lineups still contains some potency with the likes of Jose Abreu, Yermin Mercedes and Adam Eaton, making them a sneaky stack on a number of slates.

Today is no exception, as the Awesemo Top Stacks tool projects the White Sox with a 6.3% chance of being the best performing fantasy lineup of the night despite appearing in only around 2% of lineups. While that may not sound like much, that actually gives them the fifth-highest percentage to end up optimal among the 28 teams in action on this slate. And if stacking them up, don’t forget to include Yasmani Grandal. He has been abysmal to start off the season, slashing a grotesque .121/.363/.259 thus far. But as a switch-hitting catcher against a pathetic righty like Brad Keller on the road, it wouldn’t be a shock to see Grandal break out of his slump in this spot and finish as the top performing catcher on the night.

MLB DFS Outfielder: Nelson Cruz — $22

There are three guarantees in life: Death, taxes and Nelson Cruz dominating lefties. He is up to his usual tricks in 2021, hitting .300 with eight homers in 113 plate appearances. While Cruz is an exceptional hitter against both handedness, his career .271/.332/.514 slash line versus righties jumps impressively up to .298/.387/.574 against southpaws. And given that Tigers starter Tarik Skubal is giving up hard contact like it’s going out of style (19.7% barrel rate, bottom 2% in the league), fading a popular Cruz is not worth doing tonight. While it’s baseball and anything can happen, trust in Cruz as one of the top potential slate breakers on Yahoo tonight.

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