The MLB Yahoo Cup Hot Corner: Round 9

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·5 min read
The MLB Yahoo Cup Hot Corner: Round 9
Eric Lindquist brings you his MLB DFS picks for Round 9 of the MLB Yahoo Cup Daily Fantasy Baseball, including Charlie Blackmon | 5/21/21
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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 — to be our MLB DFS picks for tonight’s MLB Yahoo Cup contest.

MLB DFS Pitcher: Tyler Glasnow — $55

In last week’s article for Round 8, Tyler Glasnow was the featured man despite a difficult strikeout matchup against a Mets team that at the time had the third-lowest strikeout rate in the league. All Glasnow proceeded to do was ring them up for 10 strikeouts over eight strong innings, beating out all the more popular plays in his salary range. That is the situation again tonight, where Glasnow will go drastically under-represented on Yahoo compared to Trevor Bauer, who is at the identical $55 salary.

That makes Glasnow once again the easy pivot for tournaments. According to the Awesemo Top Pitcher’s Tool, Glasnow has a 19.2% chance of finishing as a top-two pitcher on this slate, yet he is only be rostered in 18.9% of Yahoo lineups. And while Bauer clocks in with a whopping 30.3% of finishing top two, he is being rostered at a rate well north of 37%. Still, considering Glasnow has to pitch tonight in the bandbox that is the Blue Jays’ current ballpark in Dunedin, Fla., it certainly makes sense that Bauer is the public’s preferred option.

But Glasnow is pitching at an equally elite level as Bauer, so making the move to him feels like an easy pivot for Yahoo tournaments. He throws primarily a four-seam fastball that clocks in around 97 mph with above-average spin, which generates a decent 29.8% whiff rate. But couple that with his slider (43.1% whiff) and curveball (58.7% whiff) that both sport a crazy amount of vertical movement, and he has as good of strikeout stuff as any starter in baseball. And like Bauer, he has the stamina to throw north of 100 pitches, which he has already done in four of his nine outings this season. That makes Glasnow far more comparable to Bauer than others might think, making him the preferred SP1 pitching option for the MLB Yahoo Cup tonight.

MLB DFS Infielder: Jose Ramirez — $25

For those deciding not to pay up for pitching on a massive slate such as this one, there are combinations of stacks and one-offs that no one else can touch. That makes the Indians’ Jose Ramirez an intriguing one-off for tournaments on Yahoo today, as his $25 salary at third base is tough to get considering he’s $5 more than any other player at the position. But he is worth it this season, as he has produced 12 homers and 25 RBIs in just 147 at-bats in 2021.

Ramirez has also become something of a Statcast darling, as his 47.2% hard-hit rate is by far the highest of his career. Couple that with the fact that he’s in the 97th percentile of MLB with a .421 xwOBA and the 95th percentile with a sublime 12.7% strikeout rate, and there is no doubt Ramirez is getting his money’s worth at the plate. As if all of that wasn’t good enough, he also has six stolen bases on the year, which adds yet another element to his upside on any given night. This will also be a Twins bullpen game, and the Twins pitching staff is dead last in the majors this season with 0.7 WAR. With all this in mind, Ramirez makes for an incredible contrarian tournament option on Yahoo.

MLB DFS Outfielder: Charlie Blackmon — $14

With the Rockies back at home taking on the Diamondbacks, the age-old debate on whether to stack up Coors Field or not must be asked. If wanting to differentiate for this one specific round of the Yahoo Cup, go anywhere else for a stack. But to lock in the highest-projected run total in hopes of a big score, this game is the place to turn. According to Awesemo’s Top Stacks tool, the Rockies have an 11.4% chance of finishing as the top-scoring team on the night, a substantial number considering all 30 MLB teams are on the slate.

So if opting to go the Rockies’ direction, there is no doubt that Charlie Blackmon needs to be included in stacks. He has had an abysmal season by his standards, slashing a subpar .237/.333/.344 through 150 plate attempts. But judging by his xBA of .305 and xSLG of .452, he may be getting a bit unlucky at the moment, making him a strong candidate for some positive regression soon. Targeting Blackmon at home against a weak righty in Seth Frankoff at the bargain basement salary of $14 seems like a no-brainer that checks every box, making him perhaps the strongest batting option on the Yahoo board.

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