It’s Yu Darvish‘s world and we’re just living in it. Darvish has battled injury this season, but has been stellar since being unleashed in mid-July. His seven starts since then have resulted in a 2.70 ERA with a whopping 57 strikeouts in just 43.1 innings pitched. He has only allowed more than two earned runs in two of his ten starts this season and he’s never allowed more than three. He’s going to be a chalky, high-end option against the Cincinnati Reds who are a bad offense with big time strikeout potential. Darvish does have to travel to hitter-friendly Great American Ballpark, but he will benefit from facing a National League lineup.
Rick Porcello is another interesting option tonight. He’s earned a 2.14 ERA over his last eight starts and holding opponents to an impressive .184 batting average and .547 OPS. He has pitched at least six innings in every start since May 22 (16 consecutive starts). He’s not a high strikeout pitcher, but should see a boom from facing the Rays who are striking out at 24.2% in the last thirty days, which is the third highest rate in that span. We talk all the time about Tropicana Field being pitcher-friendly so expect Porcello to see those benefits tonight.
So many excellent targets for team stacks tonight, but I’ll give you a sneaky one. The Atlanta Braves will be taking on Zack Greinke. I don’t know how sneaky it is to target Greinke, but stacking the Braves is certainly something that most owners shy away from. Greinke’s struggles this season are well-documented but it looked like he was about to turn a corner in early-June. Then he traveled to Coors Field and it was all down hill from there. Over his five starts since that day he’s battle poor pitching and injury, missing the entire month of July and posting a 7.25 ERA in that span. In his three games back from injury, he’s allowed 14 earned runs in 14.2 IP, including a nine spot to the Red Sox two weeks ago. Now the Braves get to travel to an excellent hitting ballpark and they have been on their best offensive stretch of the season. They currently rank 9th in wOBA in the last 30 days. As a visiting team, we know they will get nine offensive chances tonight, making them one of my favorite stacks of the day.
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