Look for our fantasy baseball starting pitcher rankings, hitter upgrades and downgrades daily to help you make smart fantasy baseball lineup decisions and for MLB betting tips. MLB game odds are provided by Caesars Sportsbook, and fantasy advice is geared toward ESPN 10-team leagues with standard scoring.
Note: This file has been updated with overnight pitching changes and weather-related game postponements, along with the addition of the latest MLB game odds as of the indicated time of publication.
What you need to know for Sunday's MLB games
By Todd Zola
Sunday brings bonus baseball with a trio of doubleheaders as the New York Yankees host the Texas Rangers, the New York Mets take on the Philadelphia Phillies, while the Baltimore Orioles entertain the Kansas City Royals. Along with focusing on hitters from those teams, targeting their bullpens offers double the chance for a save. Chad Green (8% rostered in ESPN leagues) picked up a save for the Yankees earlier this week while the Rangers could turn to Joe Barlow (25% rostered). Jorge Lopez (32%) has been dominant closing games for the Orioles with Josh Staumont (8%) in play for the Royals.
Camden Yards also features the slate's top streaming option with Bruce Zimmermann (15%) looking to build on his strong start to the season. The Orioles right-hander is deploying a similar pitch mix and velocity as previous seasons, but he's exhibiting improved command and control. On Sunday, look for the trend to continue against a Royals offense averaging the second-fewest runs per game in the league.
Chris Paddack checks in as another streaming option, taking the hill for the host Minnesota Twins against the Oakland Athletics. Paddack's 19.8% strikeout rate is below average, but he's in a favorable spot facing a lineup average fanning at a 26.3% clip, the second highest in the league.
The Detroit Tigers are also whiffing at an elevated rate, rendering Jake Odorizzi another streaming option as the fantasy week comes to a close in head-to-head leagues. Odorizzi's strikeout rate is pedestrian, but he's coming off consecutive outing of six inning or more, key for points leagues since innings are an underappreciated element of the scoring. Odorizzi also has a solid opportunity for his third straight win.
The Twins are leading the AL Central despite some key injuries, though they received good news with the report Carlos Correa's finger isn't broken and is listed as day-to-day. In his stead, top prospect Royce Lewis (7%) was summoned, joining fellow freshman Jose Miranda (4%) who is filling the void with Miguel Sano sidelined. Lewis and Miranda both bat right-handed, so they'll lack the platoon edge on Oakland's Daulton Jefferies, but lately the right-hander has been generous to all hitters, yielding 11 runs over his past nine frames, putting Lewis and Miranda in play as pickups, and the Twins in the mix for a low-cost DFS stack.
It's not too late to start another free fantasy baseball league. Leagues drafted this week will start scoring fresh the following Monday.
Starting pitcher rankings for Sunday
Best Sub-50% Rostered Hitters for Sunday
Best and worst hitters from the day are generated by THE BAT X, a projection system created by Derek Carty using advanced methods like those used in MLB front offices, accounting for a variety of factors including player talent, ballparks, bullpens, weather, umpires, defense, catcher pitch-framing, and lots more.
Michael A. Taylor (KC, CF -- 1%) at Zimmermann and Lyles
Nicky Lopez (KC, SS -- 9%) at Zimmermann and Lyles
Odubel Herrera (PHI, CF -- 3%) vs. Scherzer and Bassitt
Mike Moustakas (CIN, 3B -- 10%) vs. Thompson
Worst Over-50% Rostered Hitters for Sunday
Owen Miller (CLE, 2B -- 68%) vs. Manoah
Myles Straw (CLE, CF -- 69%) vs. Manoah
THE BAT X's Best Stacks for Today
Prop of the Day
Marcus Stroman Strikeouts: Over/Under 4.5 (-106/-118)
THE BAT X sees Stroman putting up 3.5 strikeouts for this matchup on average, while projecting him to exceed his player prop total 28.0% of the time. THE BAT X believes there is positive value on the UNDER with an expected value of $38.02.
Note: Expected Value is a measure of how good a bet is, factoring the probability that it will win versus the odds the book is providing. If you were to wager $1.00 100 times on a bet with an Expected Value of $25, you would win some and you would lose some, but in the end you would expect to come away with $25 in profit on your $100 investment.
FACTORS THAT FAVOR THE OVER
Stroman faces the third-toughest matchup of the day, according to THE BAT X, and is unlikely to go as deep into the game as usual with an increased likelihood of being hit around and getting an early hook.
The Los Angeles Dodgers have been the fifth-unluckiest offense in Major League Baseball this year, according to THE BAT X, and are likely to positively regress in future games.
Given that groundball pitchers struggle the most against flyball hitters, Marcus Stroman (53.7% GB% via THE BAT projections) will be a bit disadvantaged in this game with 2 FB hitters in Los Angeles's projected offense.
Wrigley Field sits at the 10th-highest altitude in Major League Baseball. High elevation often leads to better offense and fewer strikeouts.
Stroman's 91.2 mph fastball velocity this year ranks in just the 21st percentile among starting pitchers.
FACTORS THAT FAVOR THE UNDER
Stroman will have the benefit of the home field advantage today.
Stroman's 2423.3 rpm fastball spin rate since the start of last season grades out in the 89th percentile among starters.