I did not get it right with my MLB DFS picks on Wednesday. Clayton Kershaw (19 fantasy points) was a total dud, while the Los Angeles Dodgers couldn’t take care of Mike Fiers. I was certainly right about the Milwaukee Brewers, however, as Travis Shaw and Eric Thames both went yard and Mike Moustakas was decent (9.5).
While the Dodgers didn’t pan out in any regard, I did add Teoscar Hernandez (who donged) and Xander Bogaerts (21), who both worked out nicely.
It was not a winning roster, but if you rolled with the Brewers (Jesus Aguilar also donged) and basically anyone from that Sox/Jays game, you could have had a nice night.
Tonight quiets down considerably, as the MLB DFS schedule is split into an early slate and night slate. I’ll be focusing on the main slate at FanDuel, which features a solid six games. It’s more important than ever to nail a stack if you go hard, but these types of slate often can work best if you just pick your spots.
With that, let’s dive into tonight’s top daily fantasy baseball picks for FanDuel’s main slate:
SP: J.A. Happ – New York Yankees ($8.4k)
Justin Verlander is probably too expensive for me to stomach ($11.8k) on such a small slate, while James Paxton ($10k) isn’t exactly coming in at a discount despite being on the road against the Houston Astros.
Those are your top two pitchers on this six-game slate, but I like the value I can get with Happ.
Happ has great swing-and-miss stuff and he’ll be at home against a Rangers offense that whiffs at a 22% clip against southpaws. This is a tough park to pitch in and Texas is obviously very dangerous, but this might be the perfect spot to back Happ and fade the Rangers.
Perhaps that’s an unpopular opinion, but it pays to be contrarian on this small slate. Maybe paying up for JV is the way to go. I certainly would suggest that in cash games, but for tournaments I’m down for rolling out Happ.
Ross Stripling hasn’t been in great form, but is dirt cheap ($7k) as he tries to quiet the Rockies in Coors Field. He’s probably my second favorite arm if you’re looking to get a low-owned arm and get an edge over the field. Obviously trusting pitchers in Coors is risky business, but on a small slate like this it might be necessary.
C/1B: Steve Pearce – Boston Red Sox ($3.5k)
Pearce has been pretty hot lately with four dongs over his last three outings. He’s especially appealing tonight thanks to his gaudy splits (.454 wOBA, .294 ISO) against southpaws.
Boston takes on Ryan Borucki, who they tagged for four runs a few starts back. He has looked decent, but he gives up a 35% fly ball rate to the right side of the plate. I don’t mind taking a stab at that with a couple Red Sox righties. Per usual, a full four-man Boston stack is very much in play.
2B: Neil Walker – Tampa Bay Rays ($2.4k)
Brian Dozier ($4.1k) leads the way at 2B thanks to a trip into Coors Field, but he’s pretty pricey and I actually don’t love picking on Tyler Anderson. Coors Field can crush any pitcher’s soul, but Anderson has actually shown reverse splits and has somehow done his best work at home.
Dozier remains a very good play, but I’d rather save here with Walker, who gives me cheap exposure to a dangerous Yankees offense. Walker is not efficient, but he’s dirt cheap and faces a pitcher who has been hit hard (45% hard hit rate) in 2018. It’s a roll of the dice, but cheap exposure to the Yanks shouldn’t go overlooked.
3B: Eduardo Nunez – Boston Red Sox ($2.5k)
I’ll keep trying to save as I move along to 3B. Eduardo Nunez ($2.5k) is another fine deep dive as part of an elite offense. He doesn’t bring the best power to the table, but he’s really cheap exposure to another fantastic offense.
I don’t feel inclined to pay up at 3B tonight. If you don’t want to dive quite this low with Nunez, consider Kyle Seager ($2.9k), who has donged Justin Verlander thrice and would be rather contrarian.
SS: Brandon Crawford – San Francisco Giants ($2.8k)
Manny Machado is probably the top play at SS tonight, but like I said, I’m not as enamored with Coors as I probably should be. I’m looking to a Red Sox stack instead and Crawford helps me get there. Nobody will be looking at the Giants or Pirates tonight, making both teams quite contrarian for tourneys.
I certainly won’t be stacking this game, but Crawford hits righties well (.340 wOBA) and could be a fun late-game hammer. After all, Ivan Nova has his biggest issues against the left side of the plate (.369 wOBA, .230 ISO, 34% hard hit rate, 37% fly ball rate).
AT&T Park curbs the upside here, but Crawford is a solid price and could always dong Nova in this spot.
OF: J.D. Martinez – Boston Red Sox ($5k)
As I said, a full Boston stack is a very real option on this small slate – especially with Coors and the Yankees possibly cutting down ownership. I won’t fit them all in, but I do want J.D. Martinez, who has murdered left-handed pitching in the past and still owns a nice .188 ISO in 2018.
OF: Mookie Betts – Boston Red Sox ($4.9k)
Boston has been on fire so I’m sure they’ll face plant as I roll out a four-man stack tonight. I have to try it, though. This is a small slate, yet you have the Dodgers in Coors and the Yankees also to consider for hitting. Plus, if you want to pay up for pitching, cramming arguably the best offense in the majors into your MLB DFS lineup might not come easy.
There are risks to be taken if you follow along with me in this daily fantasy baseball strategy, but there’s nothing daring about paying up for Mook. Betts has slayed left-handed pitching all year (.488 wOBA, .395 ISO) and I expect him to stay hot tonight.
OF: David Dahl – Colorado Rockies ($3.2k)
My lone Coors bat comes via the Rockies, as Dahl is too cheap given his power (.270 ISO) versus right-handed pitching. I’ll say it again; the pitching is pretty good in Coors tonight and I am not a fan of picking on either Ross Stripling or Tyler Anderson.
I can see the appeal of Coors in general, though. I’ll cap my exposure here with a one-off in Dahl.
Util: Tyler White – Houston Astros ($2k)
I don’t at all like the idea of picking on James Paxton, but he’s on the road here and has given up some contact (35% hard hit rate, 44% fly ball rate) against right-handed bats. White could just as easily strikeout four times tonight, but he’s the bare minimum at FanDuel and boasts nice splits (.384 wOBA, .240 ISO) against southpaws. It’s a fine roll of the dice in GPPs to complete this lineup.
In the end, JV and Pax just seem too pricey for this slate. I’ll roll out Happ as a cheap pivot and instead of loading up on Yankees or targeting Coors, I’ll hope stacking Boston is somehow contrarian. It’s a six-game slate, though, so it’s more likely than not that ownership will just be evenly split.
Either way, I love Boston’s matchup and they’ve been red hot. I’ll go with them and hope my value plays pan out.
Love or hate my MLB DFS picks for tonight? Let me hear it in the comments below! No matter what you do, I wish you luck in your daily fantasy baseball contests at FanDuel!