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FanDuel MLB Picks – August 30th

We had much more success on Tuesday than we did on Monday and hopefully it helped you cash in contests at FanDuel. Starting at the top with our pitching suggestions, Chris Sale notched a cool 64 fantasy points, while our favorite punt play (Luke Weaver) torched the Brewers at Miller Park.

Pitching was a breeze, but we also had a few hits among the bats. Adam Duvall and Eric Thames both homered, while Daniel Murphy and Max Kepler were both very busy en route to 20+ fantasy point outings. Hopefully you caught that Matt Adams was a scratch due to his game being PPD.

Our gaffes were Rafael Devevers (3) and Marwin Gonzalez and Evan Gattis (0 combined). Those three were brutal misses, but the logic was still there. Hopefully you pivoted to Travis D’Arnaud at catcher (ended up batting 5th at just $2k) and Jose Reyes (1st at $2.5k) at SS.

It wasn’t perfect last night, but our lineup was certainly good enough to cash in most contests. Hopefully we’ll have fewer blank spots on our sheet when Wednesday is in the books:

SP: Jose Berrios – Minnesota Twins ($9k)

There isn’t a safe arm tonight, so no matter where we go we’re assuming some risk. Without any obvious punts, though, we’re probably looking at one of four pitchers in Jose Quintana, Dallas Keuchel, Robbie Ray and Jose Berrios.

Quintana has the second safest matchup of that four-pack, but he was shaky in his last start and the Pirates don’t strikeout enough. Berrios has the better matchup, as he’s at home, just fared well against the White Sox and they whiff plenty. Keuchel is at home against the Rangers and Ray is at home against the Dodgers. Those are probably the two best arms tonight, but we can’t use them and feel too great about it.

I’m on Berrios, as he’s a solid price, sports a clean 2.87 ERA at home and has handled Chicago well in two starts this year. They lack reliable firepower and K a good amount, too, so there is a lot to like here. Ray would be my second choice and he’s actually been great against the Dodgers, but his matchup lacks safety or upside tonight. I’m probably all in on Berrios, so forming a Sox hedge stack probably isn’t a terrible idea.

C: Travis d’Arnaud – New York Mets ($2k)

I’m usually game for Avila anytime he’s facing a righty and he carries his fun splits (.224 ISO, .385 wOBA) into a showdown with Ivan Nova. Nova is a solid pitcher, but he’s on the road and struggles against lefty bats to the tune of a .205 ISO. He’s been prone to the long ball this year, too, while he’s given up at least one in 9 of his last 10 starts. Avila might not dong him, but he should have a solid outing.

I’m very interested in completely punting catcher tonight, though, and that brings us to d’Arnaud. Not only did he put up 9 fantasy points last night, but he remains the bare minimum at FanDuel and takes on Homer Bailey at Great American Ballpark. We’re not enamored with splits here, but Bailey can go down in flames quickly and any cheap exposure to this park/matchup is worth a shot.

1B: Justin Smoak – Toronto Blue Jays ($3.5k)

Smoak is at home against Rick Porcello, who has given up 31 dongs on the year. I hate stacking the Jays and Porcello actually took care of them earlier this year, but they pack some power and he’s destined to give up a homer or three tonight. Porcello’s struggles come on the left side of the plate usually, so a switch hitter like Smoak could tee off in this matchup.

2B: Brian Dozier – Minnesota Twins ($4.2k)

I can’t stop targeting Dozier, as he keeps being graced with awesome matchups. He’s more expensive than I like, but he gets Derek Holland at home tonight and this dude destroys southpaws (.260 ISO, .418 wOBA). He’s been in a solid groove lately but hasn’t gone yard in a while. I think he can do that tonight, but even if he doesn’t he should be plenty fine with such a killer matchup in front of him.

I don’t feel the need to drop down at 2B tonight, but we certainly can. Scooter Gennett is in play and Ian Happ has great splits at home in a winnable matchup. Those guys are a little more dicey, though, and Dozier has too good of a matchup to pass up.

3B: Josh Donaldson – Toronto Blue Jays ($3.6k)

I don’t feel the desire to pay up at 3B tonight, so I’m left looking at the likes of Donaldson, Justin Turner or Mike Moustakas. All are viable plays, but JT is facing Robbie Ray and Moose (knee) simply hasn’t been healthy. Donaldson has cooled off a bit lately, but he’s in the same spot Smoak is. Porcello gives up a ton of contact and it wouldn’t at all be shocking to see Donaldson get ahold of one tonight.

SS: Jose Reyes – New York Mets ($2.5k)

Much like d’Arnaud, Reyes should be batting in a solid spot and will be in a great park against a bad pitcher in Homer Bailey. We don’t get a ton of pop with Reyes, but he’s been hitting well and led off last night. As long as he’s high in the order and is this cheap with a great matchup ahead of him, we have to take notice.

Reyes is part of a ransacked Mets lineup, so there is risk here. We can always pay up a bit at SS and go with Marwin Gonzalez or Zack Cozart. Cozart would be my preferred pivot, as the other SS options feel inflated or are in bad spots.

OF: Andrew McCutchen – Pittsburgh Pirates ($2.8k)

For the love of all things holy, can Cutch PLEASE finally work out against a southpaw again? We’ve been targeting Cutch’s insane splits (.427 ISO, .476 wOBA) against lefties relentlessly, but to no avail. I can’t help but keep trying, though. Not only are his splits ridiculous, but he’s a talented hitter at a super cheap price. Maybe Quintana goes nuts in this matchup, but I’m hoping Cutch gets the last laugh.

I am not against a full Mets stack at all. Homer Bailey just isn’t good, this park is dangerous and New York literally has nothing to lose at this point. Brandon Nimmo ($2.8k) could make for a fine pivot if you don’t trust Cutch, or you can add him to your OF field in this lineup. I’m certainly tempted to do so.

OF: Jabari Blash – San Diego Padres ($2.4k)

We’re hunting for a homer here, as Blash owns killer splits versus southpaws (.286 ISO) and gets a beatable one in Ty Blach at home tonight. Blach has a tough time against righty bats, too (.190 ISO, .344 wOBA), so the numbers could combine for a cheap gem tonight. Blash isn’t efficient or overly reliable, but this is a GPP squad and we need to save in some spots to load up elsewhere. He’s a fun deep dive to close out the night.

OF: Mike Trout – Los Angeles Angels ($4.6k)

Trout has missed the last two games with a stiff neck, but I think he’ll be ready to rock tonight at home against the Athletics. Trout tends to be the best player on the board just about every night, so we needn’t much of an argument to close things out with his power and speed.

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