Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Austyn Varney

Daily Fantasy MLB Baseball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 5/17/16


Welcome to Tuesday Baseball! We have a crazy 14 game slate tonight where it seems like almost every ace in the league is pitching. However, there are also some gas cans on the mound. Make sure to check out our 3 other articles as they will touch on some pitching options, tournament stacks and any weather/injury news that may be important. Let's get into the top options at each position!

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Let's just touch on the pitching situation tonight. There are 8 aces on the mound and 6 of them are in good spots. All of these guys are terrific options in tournaments, however, let's touch on the guys that are good options in all formats.

Madison BumgarnerMadison Bumgarner FD 12100 DK 12500
Opponent - SD (Rea) Park - @SD
FD - 44.71 DK - 25.37

Madison Bumgarner will take the mound tonight after pitching well over the past few weeks. Over his previous 4 games, Bumgarner has 31 strikeouts in 27 innings with an xFIP of 1.98. While he hasn't faced many great offenses, he will be facing off with another horrible one tonight in the San Diego Padres. Bumgarner took on the Padres on April 25th and ended up with a stat line of 9 strikeouts and 2 earned runs in 6 2/3 innings. This game will be played in the absolute worst hitters park in the league, Petco Park. The Padres are currently ranked league average against lefties in terms of wOBA, however, they have the 6th highest K%. Bumgarner has held both lefties and righties to an under .280 wOBA over the course of his career and has held one of the highest strikeout rates in the league. Bumgarner is my favorite pitcher of the day with price and match up considered.

Jaime GarciaJaime Garcia FD 8900 DK 9200
Opponent - COL (Bettis) Park - @STL
FD - 34.34 DK - 17.82

Jaime Garcia went out last time and pitched a gem against the Angels with a 7 inning, 8 strikeout performance. He has pitched well this year and has been the Cardinals ace as evidenced by his .211 wOBA and 1.98 xFIP. While those numbers are far from sustainable, I look for Garcia to have a tremendous season after returning from an injury filled 2015. The Colorado Rockies have struggled on the road over the last few seasons due to their stats inflating at home in Coors Field. Over the last 3 seasons, the Rockies have held a league low .286 wOBA and 76 wRC+ on the road. There is no reason to expect that trend to stop this season and we should be targeting pitchers against them consistently. I expect Garcia to have a very strong start and gives you the opportunity to pay up for some more bats that you wouldn't be able to with Kershaw or Bumgarner. I am comfortable with Garcia in both tournaments and cash game due to just how good this match up is.

Juan NicasioJuan Nicasio FD 8400 DK 7300
Opponent - ATL (Blair) Park - @PIT
FD - 32.85 DK - 16.91

Juan Nicasio has been surprisingly good this season with a .312 wOBA compared to a .382 wOBA in 2015. I as well as many others attribute this new success to the Pirates pitching coach, Ray Searage. Searage has helped Nicasio keep his fastball in the lower third against lefties and his slider in the outer third against righties. While the sample size is not large enough to know for sure, he has done both of those exceptionally well. The reason this is such a big deal is because those 2 things will keep the home runs down and bump the strikeouts up. He will taking the mound tonight against the Atlanta Braves, a team that has been absolutely horrible against righties this season. Thus far into 2016, the Braves have held a pathetic .293 wOBA and 84 wRC+ against righties. One of the main benefits of rostering Nicasio is it gives you the huge benefit of having the ability to pay up for some big bats with high upside. Nicasio is a tournament only play for me as he has a very big boom or bust nature.

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Miguel MonteroMiguel Montero FD 2300 DK 3300
Opponent - MIL (Anderson) Park - @MIL
FD - 10.03 DK - 7.67

Miguel Montero is back off of the DL which means he is right back in our DFS lives. Montero has hit righties very well over the course of his career as evidenced by his .342 wOBA and 36.2% hard contact rate. Montero will be facing off with a weak right handed pitcher in Chase Anderson. Anderson has been very bad against both righties and lefties throughout his career which puts the entire Cubs offense in play. In 2015, Anderson gave up a .345 wOBA and 4.28 xFIP to lefties, which suggest his wOBA will actually decline. This ballpark sets up very well for lefties as it ranked in the top third for power in 2015. Montero is a great play in all formats as he is not reliant on power and his team as a whole is in a great spot.

Matt WietersMatt Wieters FD 2200 DK 3200
Opponent - SEA (Miley) Park - @BAL
FD - 10.75 DK - 8.27

Matt Wieters was once known as a guy that was expected to be one of the best hitters in baseball. That all turned around last season during spring training when Wieters suffered an elbow injury and ended up having to get Tommy John surgery. While this is surgery is one that usually hurts pitchers, it can still affect hitters greatly. It can force hitters to compensate for the weakness in their elbow by putting extra pressure on other body parts. This can change their entire approach at the plate which can effect their swing and performance. With that being said, Wieters has shown some signs of turning it around with 2 home runs in his last 15 games. He will be taking on Wade Miley, a left handed pitcher that has struggled against righties as evidenced by his .331 wOBA in 2015. Wieters in a GPP only play for me as he is power reliant and the entire Orioles team is not in a spectacular spot.



Byung-ho ParkByung-ho Park FD 3800 DK 4100
Opponent - DET (Pelfrey) Park - @DET
FD - 13.33 DK - 10.36

It is weekly Mike Pelfrey day!!! Pelfrey has been absolutely atrocious this year with a .392 wOBA and a 38.2% hard contact rate against both lefties and righties. Byung-ho Park on the other hand, has been one of the best power hitters in baseball to start this year. Thus far in 2016, Park has hit 9 home runs and has exhibited a .395 wOBA and an utter rediculous 48.3% hard contact rate against righties. While that may not be sustainable, Park has showed us all that he is going to be a premiere power bat for years to come. Park gives you as much upside as anyone on this slate at a much lower price than most of those other high upside players. Park is my number one first baseman in both cash games and tournaments against Mike Pelfrey.

Tyler WhiteTyler White FD 2400 DK 3600
Opponent - CHW (Rodon) Park - @CHW
FD - 11.62 DK - 8.89

Tyler White is sitting at a very cheap price tag on FanDuel and this is a FD specific play. White will be facing off with the average left hander Carlos Rodon in U.S. Cellular Field. Rodon has struggled against righties over the last 2 years with a .353 wOBA and 4.25 xFIP. Tyler White on the other hand, has entered the majors this year and while he has not hit lefties well just yet, his minor league numbers suggest he will turn it around very soon. I am willing to trust the 3 year sample size over the 27 at bat sample size.

Consider - Adam Lind, Adrian Gonzalez, Anthony Rizzodfsr lineup tool banner



Scooter GennettScooter Gennett FD 2900 DK 3900
Opponent - CHC (Hendricks) Park - @MIL
FD - 10.7 DK - 8.65

Scooter Gennett and the Brew Crew will be taking on the right hander Kyle Hendricks and the Cubs tonight. While Hendricks is surely an above average pitcher, he has struggled against lefties over the last 2 years. Dating back to 2015, Hendricks has exhibited a .348 wOBA and 30% flyball rate to lefties. Gennett has hit righties extremely well over the course of his career with a .344 wOBA and 33% flyball rate. With this ballpark being very good for lefties and both of these guys having high flyball rates, it sets up nicely for Scooter to get one out of the park tonight. He is a terrific play in both cash games and tournaments.

Chase UtleyChase Utley FD 3000 DK 3800
Opponent - LAA (Weaver) Park - @LAD
FD - 9.83 DK - 7.68

The Dodgers are in another terrific match up tonight against Jered Weaver after facing off with a slightly better pitcher in Matt Shoemaker last night. Weaver has been atrocious this year as his fastball has decreased to 83 MPH and his combined wOBA is sitting at .397. Chase Utley, however, has hit righties very well in the leadoff spot for the Dodgers with a .395 wOBA thus far into 2016. Utley is a great cash game play as he does not have the same upside as a guy like Robinson Cano or even Scooter Gennett tonight.

Consider - Kolten Wong, Brian Dozier


Carlos CorreaCarlos Correa FD 4400 DK 4500
Opponent - CHW (Rodon) Park - @CHW
FD - 13.54 DK - 10.98

Carlos Correa has carried over his performance from last season into this year and has dominated lefties to the tune of a .371 wOBA and 35.9% hard contact rate. As mentioned, Carlos Rodon has struggled against righties over the course of his short career with a .353 wOBA and 34.7% hard contact rate. While this ballpark isn't as good as Minute Maid Park for righties, it still ranked in the top 10 in terms of power last season. Correa in an elite play in both tournaments and cash games.

Manny MachadoManny Machado FD 3900 DK 4800
Opponent - SEA (Miley) Park - @BAL
FD - 12.62 DK - 10.05

Machado has now transitioned into a shortstop on both FanDuel and DraftKings now, which is very exciting as it is a much weaker position compared to 3rd base. Machado is facing off with a weak left hander that we have already mentioned in Wade Miley. Miley has struggled mightily against righties over the past few seasons with a .331 wOBA and 34.4% hard contact rate. Machado on the other hand, has sported a .346 wOBA and 34.6% hard contact rate against lefties. This game is taking place in Camden Yards, a top 5 hitters park in the league. Machado is a great play in both tournaments and cash games and comes in a bit cheaper than Correa on FanDuel.

Consider - Eduardo Nunez, Javier Baez



Kris BryantKris Bryant FD 4300 DK 5000
Opponent - MIL (Anderson) Park - @MIL
FD - 15.2 DK - 11.73

Kris Bryant is going to be our second Chicago Cub here and while he is a righty facing off against another righty, he is actually in a better position here. Chase Anderson has exhibited reverse splits with a career .357 wOBA to righties. Kris Bryant has done the exact same as he has sported a .375 wOBA against righties compared to his .347 wOBA against lefties. I expect Bryant to go low owned as most will look at the righty vs righty match up and just assume it is a negative one for Bryant. This game is being played in Miller Park which is one of the top 5 parks for right handed power. Bryant is my top option at 3rd in both cash games and tournaments.

Adrian BeltreAdrian Beltre FD 3400 DK 4500
Opponent - OAK (Surkamp) Park - @OAK
FD - 11.79 DK - 9.11

When the Rangers are facing off with a lefty, there is a very high chance Beltre will be listed in this article. Beltre has destroyed lefties over the course of his career with a .377 wOBA and 34.6% hard contact rate. Eric Surkamp on the other hand, has struggled against righties with a career .377 wOBA and 5.73 xFIP. While I don't expect him to be that horrible forever, he is still someone that should certainly targeted with righties. I do prefer Beltre in cash as he does not have the same power upside as normal in the spacious Oakland Coliseum.

Consider - Kyle Seager



Miguel SanoMiguel Sano FD 3300 DK 4000
Opponent - DET (Pelfrey) Park - @DET
FD - 14.32 DK - 10.85

Miguel Sano is in the same boat as Byung-ho Park tonight and that is a very very nice boat to be in. Sano is facing off with Mike Pelfrey, as mentioned, Pelfrey has been absolutely horrible against righties as evidenced by his .392 wOBA. Sano however, has been great against righties over the past 2 seasons with a .368 wOBA and 38.5% hard contact rate. Pelfrey is almost certainly going to give up a few homers today and my guess is they will come off the bats of Park and Sano.

Jason HeywardJason Heyward FD 3400 DK 4300
Opponent - MIL (Anderson) Park - @MIL
FD - 13.11 DK - 10.56
Jorge SolerJorge Soler FD 2100 DK 3700
Opponent - MIL (Anderson) Park - @MIL
FD - 10.21 DK - 7.87

I am fully expecting the Cubs to have a great game tonight as I am sure you have noticed with the 4 mentioned already. I will not go into just how bad Anderson is and why we should target him as I'm sure you have heard it enough. Jason Heyward and Jorge Soler on the other hand, have a ton of upside in this match up. Both of these guys have +.315 wOBA's against righties over the past 2 seasons. This duo is one that should go very under owned as it is very rare for both a righty and lefty to be in a good spot at the same time, however, this is certainly one of those rare situations. Heyward and Soler are both great plays in all formats.

Consider - George Springer, J.D. Martinez, Gregory Polanco, Adam Jones

So yeah, baseball season! And we've got some goodies you can take with you. At the end of the post, we have our MLB eBook that you really ought to check out before setting even a single daily fantasy MLB lineup. It's free, below.



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image sources

  • 1024px-Manny_Machado_(17140631152): By Keith Allison from Hanover, MD, USA (Manny Machado) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

16 Visitor Comments

  1. Oakland pitching change to Jesse Hahn

  2. I don’t see the CIN/CLE game in the optimizer.

  3. Hoping everyone is in today because I really like the looks of this at first glance…. P- Greinke/Hendricks, C- Grandal, 1B- Cabrera, 2B- Dietrich, 3B- Donaldson, SS- Story, OF- Bryant/JD Martinez/Springer

    • Know Grandal caught Kershaw last time out but I anticipate Ellis behind plate tonight so I’d have another you like ready if that were to occur

  4. Looks solid, though I may sprinkle a Twin in there

  5. nicasio, v mart, park, kinsler, castellanos, nunez, j.d. martinez, sano, nieuwenhuis

  6. Optimizer has Kennedy pitching for KC today. I believe it’s Ventura.

  7. Normally I anchor any risky, high upside pitcher with a more reliable guy. I did that in one of my lineups with Nicasio and Bumgarner. But I wanted a lineup with some big bats so I went with Nicasio and Garcia in another lineup. Am I committing suicide? The Rockies honestly scare me a little–even away from home

  8. P- Stroman, C- Montero, 1B- Cabrera, 2B- Pedroia, 3B- Carpenter, SS- Correia, OF- Rosario, OF- Pederson, OF- Polanco

  9. Thanks, Dan. I figured. So Kennedy is pitching the night game, I assume. ???

  10. Actually it looks like Ventura during the evening and that’s the game showing up on DK. So it would be nice to have projection for Ventura.

  11. Okay, just figured it out. Doubleheader on Wednesday. Porcello/Ventura game tonight

  12. Grandal may fill in at 1b today. Ellis usually catches Kersh and A-Gon left the game with back tightness yesterday

  13. P- Syndergaard , C- Saltalamacchia , 1B- Goldschmidt , 2B- Segura , 3B- Lamb , SS- Seager , OF- Maybin , OF- Drury , OF- T. Thompson ….thoughts?

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