My MLB DFS picks were solid on Friday night, but they somehow missed out on a home run-a-thon. Ryan Braun (22 fantasy points) was my lone bat to go yard on a pretty crazy night, but he was joined by some very solid hitting.
Matt Joyce (12.7), Jed Lowrie (15.9), Didi Gregorius (12.2) and Justin Turner (18.7) all chipped in very strong DFS outings. Kendrys Morales (9.5) and Lorenzo Cain (6) at least got on the board, while Jesus Aguilar (0) was my lone truly bad play of the day.
This was a really solid group of hitters and I mentioned I was high on a few stacks. Oakland was one of them and the Athletics wound up piling on an incredible 16 runs on the Royals. Hopefully you got in on that action and found a way to make some cash at FanDuel.
My team was held back in the pitching department, as Nick Pivetta (12!?!) was just not any good in a plus spot. The silver lining there was a lot of the top pitching options did not meet expectations on Friday’s slate.
Stephen Strasburg racked up 10 strikeouts but gave up three run and didn’t get the win in Atlanta. Chris Sale and Gerrit Cole both got knocked around a bit and failed to meet their gaudy expectations attached to crazy price tags, too, while Carlos Carrasco got lit up in Minnesota.
It was not a great day for high level pitching, so the logic of grabbing an intermediate arm was actually the right move. Little did I know that it was Mike Foltynewicz (70 fantasy points!) that was the arm we all should have run to.
Either way, Saturday offers up a new day to win big in daily fantasy baseball. You can dive into the early slate, but with weather possibly impacting it quite a bit, I’m conserving my energy and focusing only on FanDuel’s eight-game main slate.
Let’s see which MLB DFS picks can help make up an elite GPP contender tonight:
SP: Garrett Richards – Los Angeles Angels ($8k)
Given Richards’ recent form, a Rangers hedge stack or a few one-offs is something to consider, but he’s in one of the best spots on the board tonight. I always like Zack Greinke at home and Caleb Smith sports elite K numbers, too, but if you want an intermediate options, Richards tops my list.
I see the love for Justin Verlander and Jacob deGrom as well, but JV faces the Red Sox and deGrom faces the Cubs. Both could easily dazzle or get wrecked. Given their high price tags, I prefer to save some cash and load up on bats.
Richards allows me to do that with a decent amount of confidence, as he’s at home in a pitcher’s park and brings nice K upside to the table. The draw here is the nice discount, while Texas whiffs (24.5%) quite a bit against righties.
They do bring some imposing power to the table, but Richards held them in check (6 Ks, 1 ER) earlier this year in Texas and their long ball impact should be severely curbed by this ballpark.
I see the allure of paying up for your arm tonight, but Richards represents elite value and has a great matchup in a good park for pitching. He’s a fine try in GPPs and with three legit aces on the board, there’s a good chance he’ll be low-owned.
C/1B: Paul Goldschmidt – Arizona Diamondbacks ($3.6k)
I love Goldy tonight. He’s been heating up a bit lately and I think his power versus lefties (.389 ISO this year) could show up in this one. Caleb Smith has proven to be a dangerous pitcher in terms of K upside, but he’s on the road and his 54% fly ball rate against righties could put him in a bad spot.
If you want to go with the full AZ stack, I can’t blame you. I’d just stick to righties, as Smith has coughed up a .145 ISO to that side of the plate and he allows the ball to get put in the air. Nick Ahmed and J.R. Murphy are your best options, but I’m just going solo here with Goldy.
2B: Jose Altuve – Houston Astros ($4.4k)
Anytime I can pay up for Astros and there’s a good chance it’s a contrarian MLB DFS strategy, I’ll consider it. They could always be chalky just because they’re good, too, but there is a game at Coors Field tonight and they’re facing a good pitcher in David Price, so ownership could be down.
I hope it is, as I love a full stack and I’ll start it off with Altuve. He owns a nice .186 ISO against lefties and while his numbers are down this year, I think he can get to Price. He certainly has in the past (7 for 19) and I think he can deliver again tonight.
Price is usually not a guy I want to stack against, but he is on the road against a very good offense. Houston just slapped Chris Sale around, too, so it’s clear they’re pretty matchup proof.
3B: Eugenio Suarez – Cincinnati Reds ($3.7k)
Adam Duvall is also in play as the Reds take on a pedestrian lefty tonight, but I want a little more reliability. I’ll pay up for Suarez, who puts his nasty .429 ISO against southpaws on the line tonight. I don’t love chasing homers in Petco Park, but Suarez is actually a good price for his splits edge and he can dong anywhere.
You can also consider JT in Coors here.
SS: Carlos Correa – Houston Astros ($4.2k)
I’ll keep my Astros love rolling with Correa, who has finally found his touch in the power department with a homer in each of his last two contests. Even if he can’t make it a third in a row, I like his upside thanks to his .405 wOBA versus southpaws.
Houston is elite offensively and might be contrarian at home, so I’m just going hard at that tonight. After all, there are a ton of shaky offenses and pitcher-friendly ballparks on the table tonight, so just trusting one of the best offenses in baseball might be so obvious that it actually works.
If you need a pivot, consider Chris Taylor in Coors.
OF: Travis Jankowski – San Diego Padres ($2.5k)
Matt Harvey needs to keep proving he’s progressed. I know he’s in a pretty safe park and has a good matchup in front of him, but that has often still led to a horror show for him. I like Padres lefties here and since there are really only three you can go after, I don’t see the need to force a pricey Eric Hosmer.
I’ll start with Jankowski, who has provided an efficient bat and could benefit from Harvey’s struggles (.347 ISO!!) against lefties in 2018.
OF: Aaron Altherr – Philadelphia Phillies ($2.2k)
I know he’s going to need to really mash it to get a dong at AT&T Park, but Altherr has the splits edge when he prepares to face Andrew Suarez tonight. Altherr is dirt cheap given his pop (.211 ISO) against southpaws, while Suarez has had serious difficulty (.410 wOBA, .270 ISO) keeping talented righties in check.
This is a GPP flier, to be sure, but it’s one of the funnest on the board.
OF: George Springer – Houston Astros ($4.2k)
I’ll end my Astros stack at three and close with George Springer. He’s the most enticing play against Price, as he destroys left-handed pitching (.316 ISO this year) and probably has the best power on the team. You can tack on Alex Bregman or another Astros righty to go four strong, but I’m really just eyeing the three best Astros bats tonight.
Util: Raffy Lopez – San Diego Padres ($2k)
You can go with whoever you want in the bargain bin, but I’ll just snatch up another lefty against Matt Harvey. This isn’t the best park to stack bats at, so I’m limiting my exposure to three total (1 Red, 2 Padres). Lopez is not an elite hitter by any means, but Harvey has given up a lot of hard contact to his side of the plate. Here’s to hoping for that Raffy long ball at the bare minimum at FD tonight.