Early DraftKings MLB Picks August 31: Is Jacob deGrom Worth Paying For?

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 15: Jacob deGrom
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 15: Jacob deGrom /
PHILADELPHIA, PA – AUGUST 30: Ender Inciarte #11 of the Atlanta Braves hits an RBI single in the top of the fourth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies in game two of the doubleheader at Citizens Bank Park on August 30, 2017 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

DraftKings Early MLB Picks For August 31

We only have four games in the early DraftKings tournament, which leaves it a little less populated than yesterday. The money line should be somewhere close though, so we know what to aim for. Half of the pitchers are priced as aces with only one in the middle tier. Where can we find bargains since it looks like we have to pay for pitching? Let’s find out!

More from Fantasy

The money line yesterday was a solid 109.3 DraftKings points. The winning lineup was more than 100 points above that at 213.3. He had Dickey and Verlander in his Orioles stack with Ender Inciarte. That was about all of the big scorers yesterday!

We will provide you with several options to build your lineup here. Want to spend all your money on pitchers and play bargain bats? We will highlight who is worth the money. Want to punt arms and pay up for the big boppers? We can help you with that as well, and everything in between!

For you first time players, if you would like a bonus of 25% of your first deposit, use this link for the referral bonus! Then continue reading for tips on how to turn those DraftKings dollars into more!

Next: DraftKings Pitcher Plays

PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 09: Starting pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks reacts on the mound during the MLB game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Chase Field on August 9, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Top Tier:

Jacob deGrom has only had one career start in Great American Ballpark. He gave up only one run in six innings. He has only faced three current Reds, so we can’t get much of a reading here. Considering his previous performance here along with his 3.19 ERA since July 1st, deGrom is a solid bet even in this hitter’s park. Facing Robert Stephenson can’t hurt either, but he still could have problems securing the win.

Zack Greinke doesn’t have great stats against his former team, but he is $1,700 less than deGrom and he has dominated at Chase Field this year. Greinke has a 2.36 ERA in 15 home starts, but has allowed eight runs in just 11.2 innings against the Dodgers this year. The return of Cody Bellinger doesn’t help, especially when  I am a little nervous about this one to begin with. It seems prudent to pay up for deGrom.

Kenta Maeda has been brilliant since his return to the rotation, but he is in the same boat as Grienke. Arizona has hit him hard in the past and this year. The Diamondbacks have scored 11 runs in only 14 innings in three games against Maeda this year. His price has dropped, but not enough for me to ignore his 5.47 ERA at Chase Field in five career starts.

Cole Hamels has been knocked around by the Astros in the past, but he pitched seven shutout innings against them earlier this year. He was also brilliant in his only career start in Tropicana Field. There is more potential for Hamels than usual, but you are playing with fire any time you start a pitcher against Houston.

Middle Tier:

Collin McHugh is the only one that meets my traditional middle tier qualifications. Good thing he is one of the day’s better options! The Rangers have hit McHugh hard in the past, but he has given up just three runs in his last three starts since getting blasted by the White Sox earlier this month. The bumps in the road seem to be over, and McHugh has a 2.08 career ERA at Tropicana Field. That makes him a solid play for those of you that need to save money.

Bargain Pitchers:

Miguel Gonzalez has a 3.84 ERA in his last ten starts, including allowing just four runs in his last four starts. He is going to be a popular streaming option against the Twins, but be aware that Gonzalez has a 5.29 ERA on the road this year, and Target Field is a hitter’s park. Besides, the Twins offense is doing well right now. There is too much risk here for me.

Robert Stephenson has quietly pitched his way to a 1.96 ERA in August. His first go-round in the majors wasn’t what fans were expecting from a top prospect, but Stephenson has been sharp lately. He is in a great spot to keep that up against the Mets.

PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 29: Jake Lamb #22 of the Arizona Diamondbacks hits a RBI single against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the first inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 29, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Top Tier:

Surprisingly, Bartolo Colon has never faced the White Sox. Jose Abreu could be a good player to use here. The power potential of Matt Davidson is enticing as well, especially for a low price.

Middle Tier:

Jake Lamb is 9-22(.409)with a walk, three doubles, two homers, four runs scored, and six RBI in his career against Kenta Maeda. If Chris Iannetta gets the call behind the plate, he could be worth using. Iannetta has a solo homer in two at bats against Maeda. I wouldn’t advise using Paul Goldscmidt though. Goldie is just 4-23(.174) against Maeda in his career with no extra base hits.

Joey Gallo homered in his return to the lineup on Tuesday, so he should be good to go against righties going forward. His price is also a few hundred lower than it was when he hit the shelf. Enjoy it while it lasts. Adrian Beltre is 6-16(.375) with two walks, two doubles, five runs scored, and two RBI in his career against Collin McHugh, so he is in play as well.

Wilmer Flores is batting cleanup these days for the Mets. He could be worth a look against Robert Stephenson, though there wont be many Mets on to drive in.

Whoever makes the start at catcher for the Astros is a strong play. Evan Gattis is 7-23(.304) with three solo homers in his career against Cole Hamels. Brian McCann is 17-64(.266) with seven walks, seven doubles, three homers, four runs scored, and an impressive 15 RBI against Hamels. McCann’s numbers are even more impressive because Hamels is usually tough on lefties.

Justin Turner gets the gratuitous price drop facing Greinke, but he is 6-16 with a walk, a double, a triple, a homer, three runs scored, and five RBI in his career against his former teammate.

Bargain Shoppers:

Omar Narvaez looks like a strong start against Bartolo Colon today. Travis d’Arnaud is decent against Stephenson even though his price is not as low as it once was.

Kennys Vargas has enough raw power that he is worth a look if you need to go cheap at first base. He will also not be highly owned because there are plenty of good options at the position.

TORONTO, ON – AUGUST 27: Jorge Polanco #11 of the Minnesota Twins hits a single in the first inning during MLB game action against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre on August 27, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /

Top Tier:

Brian Dozier is 6-14(.429) with a walk, a double, two runs scored, three steals, and a RBI in his career against Miguel Gonzalez. This isn’t quite Eric Thames against the Reds, but Jorge Polanco has nine homers on the year. Seven have come against White Sox pitching. He is also 3-6 with a double and a run scored lifetime against Gonzalez.

Jose Altuve doesn’t really get a price break against Hamels, unfortunately. However, he is 6-18 with a walk, a homer, two runs scored, and two RBI in his career off of him, so that could be why.

Middle Tier:

Corey Seager also gets a price break against Greinke. He shouldn’t. Seager has pounded Greinke in his career so far. He is 6-11(.545) with five walks, a double, two homers, six runs scored, and four RBI in his career against Greinke. I love Seager at this price if he is able to start!

Bargain Shoppers:

Rougned Odor is 7-18(.389) with a double, a homer, and five RBI in his career against Collin McHugh. Elvis Andrus is worth a look if you are looking to spend up. Andrus is 6-15 with a walk, a steal, a run scored, and a RBI.

Brandon Drury has hit righties better all season, so it should come as no surprise that he is 3-5 with a walk, two doubles, a run scored, and two RBI off of Kenta Maeda.

Next: Top Outfield Plays

PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 09: Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run off pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 9, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Top Tier:

Max Kepler is never a bad bet against right handed pitching, but Eddie Rosario is sometimes overlooked. Neither should be tonight. Rosario is 2-6 with a double and a run scored. Kepler is 2-6 against Gonzalez, but has no counting stats. Either you believe in what Gonzalez has shown lately or you don’t. That will determine whether you use Twins or not.

Shin-Soo Choo is 2-6 with a walk and a solo homer against Collin McHugh. Nomar Mazara is 2-5 with a run scored and a RBI, but he is intriguing because of that cheap price.

Cody Bellinger is 2-3 with a double and a solo homer in his career against Zack Greinke. I kind of want to see more from Bellinger before throwing him out there against a guy like Greinke when he has dominated at home, but that price is almost too cheap to ignore. For those of you looking cheaper, Curtis Granderson is 12-57(.211) with four walks, three doubles, two triples, two homers, eight runs scored, and five RBI in his career off of Greinke.

More from FanSided

Middle Tier:

Josh Reddick is 3-6 with a walk, a run scored, and two steals in his career against Cole Hamels. Carlos Beltran is 12-50 with two walks, two doubles, three homers, five runs scored, and five RBI off of Hamels. They are decently priced ways to see if he is going to struggle against the Astros again.

David Peralta will be leading off against Maeda here, and he has hit righties all year long. At $3,700, he is priced right today.

Bargain Shoppers:

There isn’t much in this tier this afternoon besides Beltran. However, there are a couple of cheap guys batting leadoff against tough pitchers that could be worth a punt play. The Reds will have either Billy Hamilton or Philip Ervin leading off against deGrom, and they both fall to here. Delino Deshields against McHugh could also be a solid play.

Next: FanDuel MLB Picks and Pivots

Good luck out there, and check out our picks for FanDuel baseball, along with our PGA picks. We also have plenty of NFL stuff to get you ready for football!