Last night was a disaster. Luis Serverino was the top play and ended up being garbage. My clever pivot to Jaime Garcia – admittedly risky – went literally as awful as it could have. Don’t worry, I sunk to new depths right along with you, as our bats were actually plenty good, but couldn’t overcome the horrendous pitching. I’m not sure you were surviving Garcia in cash games regardless of what our hitting did, while Severino probably sunk you, as well.
I know what you’re thinking. Jaime Garcia? Bro. I get it, but the pitching slate stunk last night and the top arm bombed, as well. We’re in a better spot tonight and if our favorite arm can hold up and our hitting can be somewhat close to what it was last night, we should be in good shape.
The hitting was actually awesome, too. Alex Avila (9.2 fantasy points), Jean Segura (6.2) and Justin Upton (6.5) didn’t erupt like I’d hoped, but they weren’t useless, either.
We actually hit it big with a few plays, as Ian Kinsler (31.2) donged for the third game in a row and Kris Bryant (38.1) was an absolute monster. Enrique Hernandez was a killer value play at $2.3k, as he returned a stellar 25.2 fantasy points. Justin Bour (3) was a giant turd in the face of Jake Arrieta suddenly turning into a shutdown ace again, while Nelson Cruz (6.2) didn’t blank us, but was super disappointing.
Overall, we had some major highs and some serious lows. Hopefully you used Kinsler, Bryant and Hernandez and ran for the hills with a pitcher that didn’t crater your soul into the ground. Regardless, it’s onward and upward as we try to build a FanDuel MLB squad to place in the green for Friday night:
SP: Chris Archer – Tampa Bay Rays ($10.4k)
We are not wanting for top shelf pitching options tonight, but Archer is probably my favorite arm. He’s at his best at home and gets a banged up and sulking Orioles offense. This is still a dangerous matchup on paper, but Archer can drop 10+ strikeouts easily and Baltimore has been awful lately. Stephen Strasburg is more expensive and doesn’t have it much easier against the Reds, while Michael Fulmer doesn’t provide the K upside to pay over $10k for him. Yu Darvish isn’t really in play against the Yankees at Yankee Stadium, either, while Alex Wood feels pricey in a tough matchup with the Rockies.
We can certainly opt to save at pitcher, and if we do so the two value arms I like the most are J.A. Happ and Seth Lugo. Both pitchers are on the road, but they’re getting winnable matchups against the Royals and Giants, respectively. They’ve both been in fine form and will be operating in favorable park situations, as well. On a loaded slate, though, I want high level upside with my pitcher and there should be enough value to get the bats we need. I’m pretty locked in on Archer.
C: Chris Herrman – Arizona Diamondbacks ($2.2k)
Speaking of savings, I see no reason to fade Herrman if he starts tonight. He’s at home at Chase Field (an extreme hitter’s park) and is coming off a nice 2-hit effort at Coors Field. He’s insanely cheap for the upside he offers, as he gets a beatable righty and gives us nice power with favorable splits.
I always like Alex Avila ($3k) against a right-handed pitcher and we can get a discounted Gary Sanchez ($3.5k) as he faces Darvish, but if Herrman is active I’m not sure I will look elsewhere.
1B: Justin Bour – Miami Marlins ($3.2k)
I’m going back to the well tonight, as that’s simply how daily fantasy baseball works sometimes. Bour wrecks both sides of the plate and has been a monster at home, so I’m into getting him while others are off of him. He remains a good price when we look at a very inflated 1B position, while John Lackey (20 HR allowed in 2017) is a long ball waiting to happen. We’re going to see a shot or three tonight and chances are Bour presents one (or two) of them.
I am not scared of 1B at all, as there are a ton of value picks to look at. You don’t need to spend too much here, as Josh Bell ($2.9k), Matt Adams ($3.4k) and Eric Thames ($3.4k) all offer a ton of bang for their buck. Dollar for dollar, though, Bour is the 1B I covet on this huge slate.
2B: Brandon Drury – Arizona Diamondbacks ($2.8k)
I always like to snag bats that make sense when they’re coming off of a series at Coors Field. People tend to be off of them, as they either brace for regression or aren’t as interested when Coors isn’t involved. That shouldn’t factor in here, as Drury and co. return home to Chase Field, which is among the most explosive parks in the majors. Drury mashes right-handed pitching and will be at home against a bullpen arm. He’s coming off an insane 4-hit game and has done that twice in his last 10 contests. Simply put, he’s on fire, has favorable splits and is in a great park. Oh, and he’s dirt cheap. Yeah, sign me up.
Ian Kinsler is on fire and we can’t ignore that, but he’s also at Petco Park tonight. I think if we’re paying above Drury we can go a little higher and try Brian Dozier ($3.3k) who has a decent matchup in Cleveland and is always a HR threat.
3B: Travis Shaw – Milwaukee Brewers ($3.4k)
I oddly love Shaw tonight, as he’s in a solid park against a beatable pitcher, is red hot and is expensive enough that he shouldn’t be highly owned. We all know 3B is loaded, so with a lot of people looking at the likes of Nolan Arenado, Jake Lamb, Kris Bryant and others, we might be able to get Shaw in a nice spot at low ownership. Folty is not a trash pitcher, but he’s also beatable. Shaw sports favorable splits and is really providing high level power right now with four dongs in his last 10 games.
I’m fine with Lamb at home against a righty and Kris Bryant should be fine, but Shaw offers a little value and is in a groove.
SS: Chris Owings – Arizona Diamondbacks ($3k)
Sure seems like I’m on the D’Backs tonight, huh? I see no reason to take advantage of a solid matchup at home, especially if there’s a chance people will be slightly off of them tonight. I’m not entirely sure how likely that is, but I also don’t really care. Owings has also been slaying and gives us another value bat in a good spot. He wrecks at Chase Field and has good splits against a no-name arm, so I’m game.
We can consider paying up at SS if we’re not comfortable with Owings. Francisco Lindor ($3.6k) is a solid try and doesn’t cost too much.
OF: Mallex Smith – Tampa Bay Rays ($2.9k)
Stop me if you’re heard this before; I like Mallex Smith. Sorry, but sometimes staple plays are not a bad idea and tonight Smith is a solid price at home against a bad pitcher in Ubaldo Jimenez. Smith does everything you want a daily fantasy baseball player to do and if he can tack on a homer, all the better. I don’t really want to stack Rays against Ubaldo just because he annoyingly survives games more than you’d think, but Smith can get on base, get steals and score. He’s one of my favorite value plays tonight.
I’m not enamored with Reds against Stephen Strasburg, but I don’t mind Scott Schebler as a one-off try. Strasburg is probably going to give up a dinger or two in this one and Schebler wrecks righties (15 home runs). I can see him donging one, as he’s been hot lately. We can also consider any Astros outfielders that aren’t too expensive, as Felix Hernandez tends to serve up the long ball and is making his return from a shoulder injury. I’m probably not going to him in back-to-back nights, but we can also consider Enrique Hernandez ($2.3k) at home against a southpaw again tonight.
OF: David Peralta – Arizona Diamondbacks ($3.5k)
I’m on Arizona bats tonight, but I’m interested in staying away from the bigger names like Goldy and Lamb and attacking their secondary options, who should be a little lesser owned. Peralts is on fire right now and like all D’Backs, has a great matchup at home. You don’t have to dive in with an AZ stack with me, but I like this cheap 4-man stack we’ve got going on here.
OF: Andrew Benintendi – Boston Red Sox ($3.5k)
I don’t love the idea of targeting Alex Meyer, but he’s in Fenway Park and Beni is a solid price given the park and splits we get here. He mashes right-handed pitching and has been in a nice little groove lately, donging in his last game and registering four hits over his last three contests. I don’t know if he dongs again here, but with a bad 5.59 road ERA, it’s not crazy to imagine Meyer being off his game a bit in this one.
That does it for Friday’s MLB FanDuel picks. Remember, you can use our top daily fantasy baseball picks as a lineup, but we suggest using our insight/advice in combination with your own research and gut instinct. Consider some of our secondary options we mention, as well, in the event you’re not in agreement with our top MLB DFS picks. No matter which way you go tonight, we wish you luck!