Last night was pretty absurd in daily fantasy baseball. You probably weren’t reaching the top of a GPP mountain without at least a few Mets in your back pocket, while there were a lot of pitcher landmines to work around as well.
I handed out a few decent MLB DFS picks, but I wasn’t anywhere near the top of any tournaments based on the picks I provided. Hopefully you found a way through the madness to at least cash.
It’s onward and upward come Thursday, when FanDuel offers up a fun seven-game main slate. Let’s dive into it and see if some of my favorite daily fantasy baseball picks can help produce a GPP-winner:
SP: Jon Lester – Chicago Cubs ($7.4k)
There is no safe haven at the pitcher position on Thursday night. Jon Gray is the priciest option on the board, but he’s facing a loaded Braves lineup. He’s probably your safest bet, but I personally wouldn’t call him that at all.
Nobody really stands out on this slate, so I’m just soaking up the value here with Lester. He’s been in awful form, but PNC Park is traditionally very pitcher-friendly and the Pirates boast a collective .149 ISO against southpaws.
Lester has both wrecked Pittsburgh and gotten wrecked by them this year. I’m rolling with the discounted price in a favorable spot, though. I don’t expect the world here, but Lester could have a shot at 35-40 fantasy points and that’s all I’m hoping for.
If you’re not game for Lester, I’d pay up for Gray or punt with someone like Jacob Nix. The Padres youngster is just as risky, but he’s also in a great park and saves you $1.3k in salary at FanDuel.
C/1B: Anthony Rizzo – Chicago Cubs ($4k)
The Cubs put up 8 runs yesterday and despite a park downgrade, could be a threat to do something similar tonight. They get to take on Ivan Nova, who isn’t an arm to fear and specifically has issues with lefty power (.230 ISO, 38% fly ball rate).
Rizzo went nuts yesterday and thanks to his solid splits in these matchups (.372 wOBA, .207 ISO), I wouldn’t be shocked if he does again.
2B: Daniel Murphy – Washington Nationals ($3.3k)
I like the Cubs, but I also like the Nats.
Cardinals pitcher Luke Weaver has loads of talent and works out of a pitcher’s park, but he has not put it all together yet. He still gives up too much contact and happens to have most of his troubles (.366 wOBA, .179 ISO, 35% hard hit rate, -4% K rate) against the left side of the plate.
I don’t know if you need to force Nats into your lineup, but I certainly will look at their left-handed hitters. That starts with Murphy, who has been red hot at the plate and hits righties (.359 wOBA) extremely well.
Going back to the well with an expensive Ozzie Albies ($4k) despite drawing Jon Gray isn’t the worst idea, either. Gray gets a park upgrade away from Coors Field, but has a heck of a time (.341 wOBA, .215 ISO) containing viable lefty power.
3B: Miguel Sano – Minnesota Twins ($2.8k)
Sano was my gut call here, as he’s still too cheap given his power and natural talent. He can mash anyone, but he’s got a history of launching against lefties. He gets a shaky one in Francisco Liriano, who is giving up a .367 wOBA and .184 ISO to right-handed hitting this year.
Sano’s nasty splits against lefties has not translated to 2018 thus far, but I’ll take a chance that it does in this matchup.
SS: Trea Turner – Washington Nationals ($3.7k)
While I prefer Nats lefties, I will take the discount with Turner. He’s just too cheap for a guy who has flashed power, efficiency and elite base-thievery.
If you want someone with a better matchup by the numbers, consider dropping down to Elvis Andrus. He’ll be at home in a great park against Tyler Skaggs. While Skaggs is talented, he’s getting a harsh park downgrade and offers up a 39% hard hit rate to righties.
OF: Bryce Harper – Washington Nationals ($4.5k)
I’ll continue the Washington love with Harper (you can also include Juan Soto here at $500 cheaper). I never need much of a reason to use a dong machine like Harper, but Luke Weaver obviously has problems against the left side of the plate and Bryce can mash righties (.214 ISO).
OF: Kyle Schwarber – Chicago Cubs ($3.3k)
A full Cubs stack isn’t the worst idea out there, but I’d stick to the left side of the plate.
The only other Chicago bat I really lust for is Schwarbie, who owns a nasty .260 ISO versus right-handed pitching. This really isn’t the park to load up bats at, so hopefully this Cubs pairing winds up being somewhat contrarian on a small slate.
OF: Charlie Blackmon – Colorado Rockies ($3.3k)
I mentioned how Jon Gray can have difficulty with quality left-handed bats, but it’s even more magnified for Braves hurler, Julio Teheran. Teheran can be tough at times, but he can struggle against lefties (.339 wOBA, .176 ISO, 42% fly ball rate, 43% hard hit rate).
I suspect Teheran could give up a long ball or three in this one and I want to take a crack at some of them. Blackmon and his fine .228 ISO are worth targeting tonight.
Util: Carlos Gonzalez – Colorado Rockies ($2.7k)
I’ll wrap things up with another Rockies lefty. I normally prefer to use CarGo at Coors, but he brings an equally fun .216 ISO against righties to the table. I don’t trust Teheran to toss a clean game, so if it gets dicey I won’t mind paying for a couple Colorado left-handed hitters.
That does it for tonight’s MLB DFS picks. I’m not into paying for pitching on this slate and if you want to fire up some stacks, some of my favorites include the Cubs, Braves, Rockies and Nationals.
Whether you use this entire lineup or just use a few of my daily fantasy baseball picks, I wish you luck in your contests tonight!