Fantasy baseball pitching rankings, lineup tips for Monday’s MLB games

ESPN FantasyJune 4, 2023, 10:53 p.m.4 minute read

A rising Braxton Garrett will start at home for the Miami Marlins against a beatable Kansas City Royals offense on Monday.AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

Look up our fantasy baseball starting pitcher rankings, daily hitter updates and dropdowns to help you make smart fantasy baseball lineup decisions and for MLB betting tips. MLB game odds are provided by Caesars Sportsbook, and fantasy tips are geared toward ESPN’s 10-team standard-scoring leagues.

For an in-depth look at what to expect in this daily article, and how to best use the information contained within, check out our primer here.

Note: This file will be updated with any weather-related overnight pitch changes or game postponements, along with the addition of the latest MLB game odds at the posted post time.

What you need to know for Monday’s MLB games

By Todd Zola

  • Monday’s roster is just eight games, including last Friday’s rainout make-up between the Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays, whose doubleheader on Saturday was previously scheduled make-up for an earlier rainout. Monday had originally been a travel day for both teams. The contest begins at 4:05 pm ET, so be aware of the unusual transaction or roster lock for some leagues. Shane McClanahan will take the mound for the Rays, opposed by Brayan Bello. Although the Red Sox are among the league leaders in scoring, McClanahan is a matchup test. Bello (8.4% on the roster) has shown signs that he’s making progress, but he’s still vulnerable to the draining nature of Tampa’s offense. Bello is safer in points leagues, but is probably best left in reserve in category-based formats, especially since Monday is the first day of fantasy scoring week.

  • Braxton Garrett (6.1%) registers as the top streaming option on Monday. The matchup is favorable with the offensively challenged Kansas City Royals visiting LoanDepot Park, a pitcher-friendly venue. The visitors racked up the fourth-lowest wOBA and fifth-highest strikeout rate against right-handers in South Beach. Plus, Braxton has quietly racked up five solid starts, with the only problem coming in a start at Coors Field. During this stretch, Garrett has posted a 2.67 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP, but more importantly, he’s backed with 32 strikeouts to just seven free passes spanning 27 stanzas.

  • JP Sears (3.0%) is another under-the-radar pitcher coming off a strong May. Sears posted a 2.94 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP last month. His 27 strikeouts to five walks in 33 2/3 innings weren’t as strong as Garrett’s, but worth it. Garrett and the A’s start an interleague game in Pittsburgh. The Pirates are no longer pushovers with a league-average offense, but they are below average in terms of power, which is Sears’ main pitfall. Johan Oviedo (9.4%) will oppose Sears and the Athletics. Oakland put five points on Sandy Alcantara on Sunday, but overall their offense struggles to score as they average the fewest runs per game in the MLB. Oviedo has been mixed the first two months, posting a 9.39 ERA in five games in which he has allowed at least three runs, but has a 1.29 ERA in six games in which he has allowed no more than one run.

  • Stacking multiple players from the same offense is more popular in DFS than in traditional fantasy, but on a short roster, it’s possible to implement the tactic to strengthen a lineup with a couple of holes. In DFS, better players are often included. In traditional fantasy, they can be, too, but they should already be on your list. Team managers with Paul Goldschmidt or Nolan Arenado may want to add more Cardinals for their road game against Martín Pérez, as the Rangers left-hander is experiencing home run problems again this season. Juan Yepez (0.4%), Paul DeJong (6.3%), Luken Baker (0%) and Jordan Walker (30.5%). Baker hit 18 home runs in 244 plate appearances with Triple-A Memphis, earning the 26-year-old right-hitting first baseman his first visit to The Show. Baker will primarily be the designated hitter against lefties.

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Starting Pitcher Rankings for Monday

Top hitters below 50% roster for Monday

The best and worst hitters of the day are generated by THE BAT X, a projection system created by Derek Carty that uses advanced methods like those used in MLB front offices, accounting for a variety of factors including player talent, stadiums, bullpens, weather, umpires, defense, catcher’s shooting frame and much more.

  • Jake Fraley (CIN, LF — 7%) vs. July Tehran

  • Andrew McCutchen (PIT, LF — 24%) vs. JP Sears

  • William Contreras (MIL, C — 38%) at Andrew Abbott

  • Matt McLain (CIN, SS — 23%) vs. Tehran

  • Ke’Bryan Hayes (PIT, 3B — 15%) vs. Sears

  • Kevin Newman (CIN, 2B — 1%) vs. Tehran

  • Spencer Steer (CIN, 3B — 42%) vs. Tehran

  • Jesús Sánchez (MIA, CF — 1%) vs. Mike Mayers

  • Connor Joe (PIT, LF — 5%) vs. Sears

  • Seth Brown (OAK, 1B — 5%) at Johan Oviedo

The worst hitters with more than 50% on the roster for Sunday

  • Ian Happ (CHC, LF — 60%) on Blake Snell

  • MJ Melendez (KC, C — 56%) at Braxton Garrett

  • Jose Abreu (HOU, 1B — 59%) on Alek Manoah

  • Jeremy Pena (HOU, SS — 63%) in Manoah

  • Nolan Gorman (STL, 2B — 71%) on Martin Perez

  • Dansby Swanson (CHC, SS — 92%) at Snell

  • Jake Cronenworth (SD, 2B — 73%) vs. Kyle Hendricks

  • Isaac Paredes (TB, 3B — 56%) at Brayan Bello

  • Seiya Suzuki (CHC, RF — 53%) at Snell

  • Salvador Perez (KC, C — 93%) at Garrett