My daily fantasy baseball picks didn’t really deliver last night. I nailed it by eating the chalk with Gerrit Cole as my top arm (61 fantasy points!), but my bats weren’t as good as I’d hoped.
Every single hitter I used at least got on the board and I did get dongs from Ryan Braun and Cody Bellinger, but it just wasn’t enough.
The early slate today had a ton of bad weather and was risky, so I can understand if tonight’s six-game main slate is your main focus. Hopefully I can make some solid MLB DFS picks and help you win some cash. Let’s get to it:
SP: Rich Hill – Los Angeles Dodgers ($8.2k)
Jameson Taillon is being pumped up as the top arm on a really crummy slate for pitching. I’ll take Rich Hill for $1k less.
I’m not saying Taillon can’t crush, but he’s had two good starts and they’ve both been at home. Now he’s headed to Miami to take on a Marlins team that has been annoyingly solid against good pitching all year long. I’m not saying to stack the fish, but I’d rather save a little cash on this slate when it comes to my pitcher.
That comes via Hill, who has elite strikeout upside and is typically very good at home (7-5, 2.77 ERA, .179 BA allowed in 2017). He doesn’t always last as long as you’d like and he can struggle with walks, but he Ks righties at a 32% clip and the majority of Arizona’s lineup currently bats from that side of the plate.
I’m hoping most of the ownership will fall on Taillon and I don’t mind attacking him a bit with some well-placed Marlins. Hill closes the night up at home and all he has to do is match Taillon (or come close) to be the right play.
I’m also looking at Chase Anderson. The winds could be blowing in at Citi Field (15 mph) and if that’s the case, the fear of homers there decreases a good amount.
C/1B: Justin Bour – Miami Marlins ($2.4k)
If I’m not using Taillon I have to use a bat or two against him to double-down on the fade. I mean, I don’t have to, but on such a small slate it’s a great way to increase my advantage on the field if I’m right.
You still should choose wisely and Bour is as good of a pick here as any Marlins bats. Not only is Bour heating up at the moment (3 dongs in his last three games), but Taillon sees his K rate drop by 10% against lefty bats. He really doesn’t get battered too badly by either side, but if you want to get a homer off of him, it’s probably coming from a lefty.
Bour is not an efficient hitter, but he does yield a powerful stick and is traditionally better at home and against righties. I’ll take a crack at his fun splits (.253 ISO) in hopes his recent success keeps rolling through the night.
2B: Robinson Cano – Seattle Mariners ($4k)
Cano is ablaze to start the year, as he enters the night ripping a sick .424 batting average. He’ll also be at home against a beatable hurler in Kendall Graveman and is still in search of his first homer of the year.
Graveman is a notorious ground ball pitcher, but there is a lot working in Cano’s favor here. Obviously a powerful hitter like him is destined to send one deep eventually, but he also carries solid splits (.374 wOBA, .211 ISO) against right-handed pitching and has been crushing at home.
On the pitching Side, Graveman gives up a 38% fly ball rate to righties and hasn’t had amazing success (7 for 22, 1 HR) in stopping Cano. I can’t say that Cano will finally dong tonight, but pretty much everything backs him in this spot. Hopefully his steep price will keep his ownership down, but I’m all in on him tonight.
3B: Travis Shaw – Milwaukee Brewers ($3.6k)
The wind at Citi Field could call for interest in the pitching rather than the bats, but I might ignore it on the Milwaukee side. Why? Because Matt Harvey can be just that bad, people.
The power is still there for the Brew Crew to launch away in this one, especially since The Dark Knight gets hit pretty hard from both sides of the plate. If you’re attacking Harvey, though, it’s from the left side, where his K rate dips slightly and he offers up a 37% fly ball rate and 37% hard contact rate.
Insert Shaw, who bats from the left side and brings solid splits (.372 wOBA, .248 ISO) to the table against righties.
SS: Corey Seager – Los Angeles Dodgers ($3.7k)
I’ll snatch up a late-game bat in Seager, who I don’t hate against a righty in Taijuan Walker. Walker is a good pitcher, but it’s tough to stifle the Dodgers in Dodger Stadium. Seager is one of the better SS options on the board as well, while he brings solid splits against righties (.354 wOBA, .175 ISO) to the table.
OF: Khris Davis – Oakland Athletics ($3.6k)
I always love Davis for power and I think you can target him in a solid spot tonight against southpaw, Marco Gonzalez. Davis sees his splits dip a bit against lefties, but he still provides a nasty .220 ISO and offers up a late-game hammer.
That, and Gonzalez may not be a bad guy to attack. That’s especially the case against right-handed bats, where he sees his strikeout rate drop by 8%. He also gives up a 33% fly ball rate and 32% hard contact rate to that side of the plate. Davis is no lock, but I wouldn’t be shocked at all if he launched one (or two) tonight.
OF: Hunter Renfroe – San Diego Padres ($2.7k)
Renfroe is a lock for me against a southpaw. He puts up disgusting splits (.368 ISO!) and faces a hard contact lefty in Derek Holland. I’m not sure how he’s doing it, but Holland has managed to survive two starts in 2018 without getting taken yard. Considering he got brought deep 31 times a year ago, that’s quite the accomplishment.
It’ll be short-lived, though. Even in a pitcher’s park, I think you can book the Renfroe dong tonight. Also, be sure to look at the other San Diego righties. Holland gets burned by that side of the plate, as he gives up a 43% fly ball rate and a 40% hard contact rate.
OF: Ryan Braun – Milwaukee Brewers ($2.8k)
I prefer to play lefty bats versus Harvey, but as I said earlier, his hard contact really knows no bounds. Provided he’s active, Braun is a fine try here, as he has plenty of power (.206 ISO) to do damage in this spot.
Util: Eric Thames – Milwaukee Brewers ($4k)
I’ll close things up with Thames, who has been on a power tear with five homers to start the year. He’s another viable Brewer bat and I like him even more since he’s coming from the left side of the plate.
Thames has the splits edge here (.389 wOBA, .286 ISO) against righties and this seems like a fun spot to stack Brewers. Harvey is always a guy you want to consider targeting and after he got tattooed (9 hits) by the Nats in his last start, I’m game for going after him here.
Not into the Brew Crew? Shake things up so you can load up on Padres and Giants. Both sides have righty bats that murder southpaws and there are two very beatable left-handed pitchers taking the mound tonight at Petco Park.
That does it for my look at Saturday’s daily fantasy baseball main slate at FanDuel. I wish you luck in your games!