FanDuel MLB Picks – August 2nd

Tuesday was another hit or miss night in daily fantasy baseball. Actually, it was just flat out insane. The Red Sox and Indians faced off in a game with Chris Sale and Carlos Carrasco pitching and boasting a 7.5 Total. Both pitchers got absolutely roasted as the two teams piled on a ridiculous 22 runs.

Naturally, Sale and Carrasco were total busts and part of the whole “none of these pitchers feel safe” narrative we dished out yesterday. Our favorite pitcher was Jose Berrios, who didn’t blow the door off the hinges, but got a solid 33 fantasy points. Max Scherzer was also a bust, as he left his start after one inning due to neck spasms.

It was a tough slate if you couldn’t find the right pitcher, but Berrios would have gotten you by and a few of our bats worked out nicely. Tyler Moore end up getting scratched, but James McCann got two hits and scored, Robinson Cano wrecked, Nolan Arenado topped 30 fantasy points, Trevor Story got a hit and walked and Trey Mancini racked up a double, walk and run.

Aaron Altherr and Brandon Moss (0 total) were our only bad plays. Hopefully you pivoted to Nelson Cruz from Altherr and went elsewhere after Moore got scratched. Overall, our FanDuel MLB picks were good enough to hit the green in cash games and if we did things slightly differently it could have done well in GPPs. Tuesday was pretty wild, though, so any amount of gaffes would be fairly forgivable on a slate that crazy.

It’s onward and upward again on Wednesday, as we try to piece together a winning FanDuel MLB DFS lineup:

SP: Dallas Keuchel – Houston Astros ($9.6k)

Last night’s pitching slate was amazing and turned up completely lame. Tonight’s is the exact opposite. It’s unlikely the end result is a whole lot different, though, as there just aren’t a lot of scary arms toeing the rubber. That may keep us on Keuchel, who was not great in his return from a 2-month layoff, but this will be his second game back and we may not have a choice but to trust him.

Keuchel deserves a mulligan for his last outing. It was his first game back and he was on the road against a dangerous Tigers offense. I stayed away from him for those very reasons and tonight he’s now looking attractive due to a better matchup at home. Keuchel gets a dangerous Rays offense that strikes out as much as anyone, while Dallas sports a nasty 1.04 home ERA and has yet to eat a loss in 2017. I doubt he suffers that fate tonight.

There are other routes to take, as Jake Arrieta is in play and deeper dives like Luke Weaver (vs. Brewers) and Brock Stewart (vs. Braves) aren’t out of the question. Arrieta gets a dangerous Arizona lineup, though, while Weaver and Stewart are admittedly tough to trust. I’m sticking with Keuchel, who should be fine for cash games and maybe based off of his most recent outing, he’ll even carry low ownership in GPPs.

C: Evan Gattis – Houston Astros ($2.9k)

Gary Sanchez is on the early slate, so catcher isn’t as good as usual tonight. We can look at Buster Posey or Salvador Perez if we want to spend, but I’m not seeing much reason to do so with Gattis offering nice value at home against Austin Pruitt.

Gattis gives us upside thanks to his power and a nice .206 ISO against right-handed pitchers. It just so happens that Pruitt also struggles the most against righty hitters (.200 ISO and .403 wOBA) so I have zero issues with this play. Perez is just $300 more and makes for a fine play at Camden Yards, as well.

1B: Mike Napoli – Texas Rangers ($2.7k)

It often makes sense to spend at 1B but I am loving Napoli in this spot. Not only is he at home in a hitter’s park against the beatable Ariel Miranda, but he owns a nasty .348 ISO and .362 wOBA against southpaws.

Napoli can be hit or miss, but he’s coming in at a nice discount with everything working in his favor. Miranda struggles more against righties, too, while giving up a 45% fly ball rate to that side of the plate. That’s especially dangerous against a potent Texas lineup in this park.

Paying up at 1B is still attractive, so we should consider Mark Reynolds, who is facing a beatable (and inexperienced) righty at Coors tonight. Cody Bellinger is on the road against Julio Teheran but he’s also worth a look thanks to a nasty .360 ISO against right-handed pitching.

2B: Scooter Gennett – Cincinnati Reds ($2.8k)

Gennett is probably too cheap to pass up tonight. There are a lot of options to like at 2B, but he crushes right-handed pitching (.308 ISO, .430 wOBA) and gets a beatable arm in Trevor Williams. We obviously can’t love that he’s in the pitcher-friendly PNC Park, but he’s in a nice groove (6 hits over his last 5 games) and he’s shown increased power this year. Even in this park, Gennett provides serious upside at his given price tag.

Jonathan Schoop is $4k but in an awesome spot, while Robinson Cano ($3.4k) is another intermediate option to look at that boasts great splits and is on fire.

3B: Rafael Devers – Boston Red Sox ($3.1k)

We’ve been talking up Mike Moustakas and Alex Bregman lately, with only the latter paying off. Both are again in play tonight, but it might be Devers that we gravitate to. Since we’re spending on our pitcher, we still want to find some solid spots to open up our roster a bit and the red hot Devers looks like a good place to do so.

Boston’s young masher owns an insane .381 ISO and .578 wOBA against right-handed pitching right now and he’ll be at home tonight against a volatile arm in Trevor Bauer. Bauer is handing in a 28% K rate against righties, but he can struggle with power and Dever isn’t whiffing at the plate right now. Moose and Bregman are safer and chalkier, but if Devers is going to be even remotely contrarian, we don’t mind biting here.

SS: Marwin Gonzalez – Houston Astros ($3.6k)

Paying up at SS is probably a must tonight, but we can get some mild savings with Marwin or Corey Seager. Both are great options, but I might prefer Gonzalez, who isn’t on the road and doesn’t have to face Julio Teheran. He’s been great in 2017 and carries a nasty .260 ISO and .420 wOBA against righties into a date with the beatable Austin Pruitt. Seager is probably my second choice, but Gonzalez owns the better matchup and boasts the superior splits in this splot.

OF: Jesse Winker – Cincinnati Reds ($2k)

We’re not expecting Winker to dong again like he did last night, but here he is at the minimum price again and probably starting for the Reds. He actually had a second homer stolen from him last night, so he brings power to the table. His nasty .250 ISO against right-handed pitching tells us that, so even though he’s at PNC Park I see little reason to try him again. Winker is a talented hitter who has good splits tonight and should also help open things up from a salary perspective.

OF: Tommy Pham – St. Louis Cardinals ($3.4k)

I’m interested in Cardinals that make sense, as they get a positive park shift in Miller Park. Pham and a few others hit lefties well, too, with Pham turning in a nice .295 ISO and .413 wOBA against left-handed pitching. Pham has the power to crush in this park and while Brent Suter has contained offenses, I think Pham could get to him.

There are a lot of options to consider here, but we want value and upside in playable parks. Pham helps us with that and opens things up for an elite power bat to wrap this team up.

OF: Mike Trout – Los Angeles Angels ($4.9k)

I want an elite masher to close this team out and we really can go back and forth on several. Trout leads the way for me with his ridiculous .377 ISO and .456 wOBA against right-handed pitching, but we can also take long, hard looks at Bryce Harper, Charlie Blackmon, Michael Conforto and Giancarlo Stanton. Trout is probably the safest play in daily fantasy baseball, though, and he’s got as much upside as anyone.

Trout plays in a bad park for long balls, but he’s been wrecking (2 hits in each of his last 3 games) and gets a solid matchup here. He’s due for to go yard after not doing so in any of his last 7 contests, either. I’m calling my shot here with Trout.

Remember to keep an eye on weather (lots of it tonight) and any major changes to lineups. If we catch wind Dallas Keuchel is on a pitch count, for instance, we’ll want to pivot to Arrieta or take a deep dive at pitcher.

Also, you don’t always have to use every single guy we vouch for here. We love these plays given the talent, splits, parks and/or matchups, but we give a ton of them for good reason. They form a team that looks good to us, but ultimately you need to like them, as well. Pick your spots after conducting your own research and you can end up winning big if you mix the right guys with our favorite picks. Regardless of what your daily fantasy strategy is, we wish you luck tonight!

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