MLB DFS: Tyler Mahle, Eric Lauer Top Leverage Pitchers for Friday


August 12

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Pitchers seeing the most leverage: Tyler Mahle, Eric Lauer

Tyler Mahle takes the mound tonight for this second start as a Minnesota Twin at the top of our leverage board ahead of his matchup against the Los Angeles Angels. Mahle had a forgettable debut where he surrendered four runs over six innings, but there is definitely more in the tank going forward. Despite his not-so-great ERA at 4.49, we see his expected ERA fall to 3.37 and respectable strikeout production at a roughly 26% clip. He has struggled giving up walks as he has the fifth-highest BB% among all qualified pitchers, but the Angels have the third-highest Swing% and the eighth lowest BB% over the past two weeks, so maybe Mahle gets some help from his opponent tonight. 

The Angels have been highly underwhelming offensively and essentially are just Shohei Ohtani and a bunch of guys at this point. They offer a slight offensive upside as we see them sporting the 11th highest ISO over the past two weeks, although they have bottom six rankings in wOBA and wRC+. Mahle is reasonably priced at $8,500 on DraftKings and is expected to see single-digit ownership, but Mahle has not been good enough lately, so this will come down to your confidence with the Angels. Odds are it is pretty low and favors Mahle. 

Eric Lauer takes the mound for his Milwaukee Brewers as they go up against the St. Louis Cardinals in a high-leveraged series for the top of the NL Central. Lauer finds himself in a desirable leverage position as the Cardinals have been swinging the bats very well lately. In August, the Cardinals have the best wOBA and wRC+ in baseball while still holding strong with a top three ISO ranking. St. Louis has struck out the least in baseball during the same stretch at a staggering 15.8% while walking at the highest clip at 11.6%. They are playing the exact type of baseball you need to play when going into the most crucial series of the year to date. 

Lauer has produced an average season for his Brewers with a few matchups against the Cardinals under his belt. Over a combined 11 innings, Lauer has allowed a combined seven runs while only registering six strikeouts. Not great stuff, as he faces the same lineup that has already got the better of him, but now they are red-hot. Lauer is expensive at $9,500, which has helped to drop his expected ownership to sub-3%. It is hard to back an average pitcher when they’re facing a surging offense and when that same offense has already shelled him. Lauer has both against him, so you might as well pay up for one of the marquee arms on the slate rather than coughing up significant coinage for Lauer.

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