It wasn’t all bad with Thursday’s FanDuel MLB picks. We did a few things right, as we told you Chris Sale felt a bit dicey and our favorite value arm (Jose Berrios) was plenty fine with a solid 34 fantasy points. There were better pitchers, but Berrios saved you cash and didn’t burn you, while Sale most certainly would have meant a loss.
Our bats did disappoint us, but on a short slate you really need to either hit that one big stack or have the perfect picks. Last night was really weird, as the Twins got stifled by Derek Holland of all people, the Indians hung 13 on Sale and the Sox, the Cubs could only put 2 on the board against Sal Ramono in a great park and the Angels got blacked by Martin Perez at home.
It was a weird night as a whole, so hopefully you avoided Sale and somehow got the right bats to cash. Even in hindsight, though, it’s not like stacking against Sale was ever a great idea. Hopefully things can open up a bit for us tonight as we shift gears and make our daily fantasy baseball picks for Friday’s full 15-game slate:
SP: Zack Greinke – Arizona Diamondbacks ($9.6k)
I don’t want to waste much time on pitcher tonight. Jacob deGrom is the most expensive arm but he’s facing the Nats and has not been great lately (10 runs allowed over his last two starts). Greinke excels at Chase Field (11-1, 2.34 ERA) and while the Giants don’t whiff a ton, they don’t boast scary power, either. Greinke handled himself just fine (4 Ks, 2 ER) the last time he faced San Francisco and I think he’ll be better tonight.
The angle here is value. Greinke is the best value arm on the board and there are not many viable pivots. Adam Conley could be popular against the Padres – especially after notching 11 strikeouts in his last start – but that feels like a trap. I’m going Greinke across the board and not putting much more thought than it requires.
C: Salvador Perez – Kansas City Royals ($2.9k)
Perez hasn’t been back long from an injury but he’s a good value tonight against a beatable southpaw in Ryan Merritt. Not only does Perez provide power against an inexperienced arm, but he’s got strong splits (.207 ISO) against lefties, too. Catch feels a bit inflated tonight, so we’ll be looking for value and we can find it via Perez in this spot.
1B: Tommy Joseph – Philadelphia Phillies ($2.5k)
There are a ton of options at 1B, but I find it difficult to bypass Joseph at home against a lefty. Not only is Tommy Boy wrecking with 3 home runs in his last four games, but he mashes southpaws to the tune of a .255 ISO. Jose Quintana is not some cakewalk matchup, but in this park we can keep swinging for the fences with Joseph.
2B: Ian Happ – Chicago Cubs ($3.2)
Happ has been weird lately, as we’ve suggested him quite a bit. He’s been scratched twice and got 12 fantasy points the one time he was active and last night when we didn’t plug him, he homered. He’s again in a great spot tonight, as he faces a beatable arm in a great park and boasts a nice .277 ISO against righties. Just make sure he’s active.
3B: Rafael Devers – Boston Red Sox ($3.3k)
All aboard the Devers hype train tonight. The mashing rookie has actually cooled down considerably lately, but he’ll be at home against Jeremy Hellickson, so now feels like an awesome time to jump on him. He gives us monster power, he offers nice value and his splits (.383 ISO) are disgusting. Hellboy isn’t a bad pitcher to pick on in general, either, so Devers checks all the boxes tonight.
SS: Marwin Gonzalez – Houston Astros ($3.2k)
I have no problem continuing to go back to Marwin, who boasts awesome splits against righties and remains too cheap to fade on a nightly basis. He’s in a pitcher-friendly park against a solid young prospect, but SS in general feels like a toss-up tonight. I’d rather take the splits, power and value here.
OF: Cameron Maybin – Los Angeles Angels ($2.5k)
I want to open up my salary a bit, so I think diving once or twice in the outfield can get us where we need to go. Maybin could be part of that, as he’s at home and boasts solid splits against right-handed hurlers. He doesn’t give us a ton of upside, but he can do a little bit of everything and faces a beatable arm in Collin McHugh. The real value comes in McHugh’s struggles against righties, who he allows a staggering .311 ISO against.
OF: Brandon Nimmo – New York Mets ($2.4k)
We’re going to need to save somewhere and I like Nimmo to help us with that. Given New York’s trades and injuries, the youngster has found himself a solid spot in the lineup. As long as he’s batting in the top half of the order we can give him a look. He hasn’t shown off any power yet, but he’s been hitting fairly well and gets a pitcher in A.J. Cole that is getting shredded by lefty bats to the tune of a .279 ISO and .428 wOBA. For this dirt cheap price, we can take a stab with Nimmo.
OF: Giancarlo Stanton – Miami Marlins ($5.1k)
There are a lot of monster mashers to consider, but we get cute with it? The splits are there for Mike Trout, Aaron Judge and J.D. Martinez, but nobody is as dialed in as Stanton right now. He returns home to take on a lefty in Travis Wood that can certainly get beat and Stanton’s splits against southpaws (.382 ISO, .428 wOBA) remain to die for.