Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

08/05/2018
Doug Norrie

Daily Fantasy MLB Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 8/6/18

Monday's MLB action brings us ten games on the schedule with some top-tier arms like Trevor Bauer and Noah Syndergaard taking the bump. But there are plenty (almost too many) gas cans getting starts as well, putting a bunch of teams in super spots on offense. Let's take a look at how things break down on Monday for FanDuel and DraftKings.

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Pitcher

Trevor BauerTrevor Bauer FD 11500 DK 12300
Opponent - MIN (Kyle Gibson) Park - CLE
FD - 45.94 DK - 24.89
With Chris Sale landing on the DL this past week, Bauer could make a real late push for the AL Cy Young Award. He’ll make a strong case with the second-highest WAR among AL pitchers and a 31% strikeout rate that ranks among the best in the bigs. This season continues year-over-year improvement for Bauer with a fantastic 3.20 xFIP and career-best strikeout numbers. The Twins traded away some of their top-of-the-order bats in Escobar and Dozier at the trade deadline and are now mixing and matching lineups. Outside of Miguel Sano, they aren’t a team that strikes out at an overwhelming rate, but it’s still a plus matchup for Bauer. He’s a -190 opening favorite, the third-best win expectation of the slate. He's expensive for a reason but the strikeout numbers do like they are going to stick and you have to pay top dollar for elite pitchers. Bauer is, for sure, that type of arm now.

Noah SyndergaardNoah Syndergaard FD 9400 DK 9600
Opponent - CIN (Homer Bailey) Park - NYM
FD - 39.53 DK - 22.04
Syndergaard has been on and off the DL this season with a bout of sickness the last time and a finger issue earlier in the season. He did go 91 pitches in his last start, and the assumption is he will up it to a full workload in this one. For his skill set and peripherals, he’s much too cheap on both sites, but especially on DraftKings where you might even be able to pair him with Bauer. In his 82 innings this season he has a 5.4:1 K:BB ratio with a 39% strikeout rate. Those numbers are of course pushing into the elite category and he’s worth a play even against a decent Reds' offense. The Mets come in at -164 home favorites against Homer Bailey with Cincy as the lowest opening implied run total on the slate (3.28). Like I said, you are getting Thor at a pretty significant discount here and he’s for sure in the cash game discussion on both sites.

Lance LynnLance Lynn FD 7400 DK 7100
Opponent - CHW (Dylan Covey) Park - CHW
FD - 30.71 DK - 15.18
Luke WeaverLuke Weaver FD 7000 DK 7200
Opponent - MIA (Wei-Yin Chen) Park - MIA
FD - 29.78 DK - 15.63
I’m putting these two guys together because I think the context for both is very similar, as are the concerns. Both come in with excellent matchups against White Sox and Marlins ranking near the bottom of the league against righties this season. They are bottom-feeding offenses with Weaver and Lynn coming in as solid favorites (-145 and -196 respectively). Each has flashed strikeout stuff at times this season, though they do struggle with free passes (Lynn more than Weaver). Where I’m concerned is the pitch counts. Lynn only threw 71 in his Yankees’ debut even though he was cruising (five strikeouts, zero earned runs in 4+ innings) and Weaver hasn’t topped 82 pitches in any of his last three starts. So while things line up well for both today, and they are coming cheap, you could be looking at quick hooks.

Consider Nick Tropeano against the Tigers.

First Base/Catcher

Jose MartinezJose Martinez FD 2700 DK 4000
Opponent - MIA (Wei-Yin Chen) Park - MIA
FD - 11.04 DK - 8.44
Over the past two seasons, Martinez has been one of the best hitters in the league against lefty pitching. In his last 154 plate appearances in that split he’s hitting to the tune of a .983 OPS and .413 wOBA. The BABIP is probably a little high, but these numbers are still excellent and he should be in the five spot against Chen on Monday. The park doesn’t do the Cardinals any favors because it great suppresses power all around, but that’s mitigated some by Chen who is among the worst regular starting pitchers in the majors. He owns a brutal 5.12 xFIP and paltry 17% K rate. That leaves plenty of room for contact for a platoon guy like Martinez and the latter is coming cheaper on both sites.

Anthony RizzoAnthony Rizzo FD 3900 DK 4800
Opponent - KC (Jake Junis) Park - KC
FD - 14.75 DK - 10.98
Rizzo struggled for the first half of the season, but he’s making up for lost time in the short term. Over his last 65 plate appearances, he has five home runs and a 1.116 OPS. Sure, it’s a smaller sample size, but some of his first half numbers suggested that things were going to turn around for the Cubs’ superstar. After something like a day off on Sunday (he pinch hit) he should be back in the leadoff spot against Junis on Monday. The latter has shown flashes at times this season, but still rates out as a middling starter with a mid 4’s xFIP. The Cubs have one of the higher implied run totals on Monday after the Yankees and Coors. And I still think Rizzo is coming too cheap thanks to the first half struggles.

Strongly consider Greg Bird in the middle of the Yankees’ lineup against Dylan Covey.

At catcher on DraftKings, consider paying for guys like Mike Zunino against Martin Perez or Robinson Chirinos against Wade LeBlanc

 

Second Base

Dee GordonDee Gordon FD 2700 DK 4200
Opponent - TEX (Martin Perez) Park - TEX
FD - 11.75 DK - 9.43
Gordon sat out the last two games, but should be back in the lineup on Monday. He struggled against lefties last season, but for his career, Gordon is just about platoon neutral. This season, he’s actually better against lefties where he’s striking out only 11% of the time and has an OBP 30 points higher. He doesn’t light the world on fire considering the guy never takes a walk and has no power to speak of. But Gordon is coming very cheap on FanDuel, should hit leadoff, faces Martin Perez and already has 26 stolen bases on the season. This is a great spot for the Mariners across the board and you can fairly safely roster the top 1-5 (at least) hitters at their respective price points.

David FletcherDavid Fletcher FD 2600 DK 3200
Opponent - DET (Matthew Boyd) Park - LAA
FD - 10.21 DK - 7.82
The Angels have moved their lineup around at times this season, but it does appear like Fletcher will stick as the leadoff hitter when lefties are on the mound. There aren’t a lot of stats to use to prop up the case for Fletcher as a play, which is somewhat problematic. But the plate appearance expectation from the leadoff slot does count for a lot at these prices and assuming Trout is back in the lineup on Monday (no sure thing) then you can boost the Angels’ implied run line. Fletcher takes more walks and strikes out less against lefty pitching putting him in that punt play consideration.

Consider DJ LeMahieu coming in the mid-tier in Coors.
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Shortstop

Jean SeguraJean Segura FD 3100 DK 4600
Opponent - TEX (Martin Perez) Park - TEX
FD - 11.79 DK - 9.25
There are actually a lot of shortstops in good spots on Monday which could leave ownership percentages all over the place. But you are probably going to want at least a couple of Mariners in your lineups against Martin Perez. Perez is about as bad as it gets for a regular starter with a terrible 1.4:1 K:BB ratio, 5.20 xFIP and 44% hard contact rate against. Segura is much better against lefties with an .807 OPS and 121 wRC+ over his last 272 plate appearances in that split. The park plays amazing for power which is why we are seeing consistently high run lines coming out of Texas this season. And it helps when you get garbage arms taking the mound as well. Segura is a little pricey, but well worth it in this matchup.

Paul DeJongPaul DeJong FD 3300 DK 3900
Opponent - MIA (Wei-Yin Chen) Park - MIA
FD - 11.56 DK - 8.81
We already outlined some of the reasons why it’s a good idea to stack against Chen on Monday and DeJong makes for an excellent play at shortstop. I like the DraftKings value a little more than FanDuel, but he’s in play on both sites. The Cardinals have moved him into the three spot in their lineup and he’s taken lefties to task over his first two seasons. He has an .850 OPS and .354 wOBA in that split with the biggest issue being the strikeout rate (30%). That’s much less of an issue against Chen who strikes out less than seven batters per nine. DeJong is in something of a slump of late, but it’s only led to his price coming down in the short term.

I could have easily written up Didi Gregorius against Dylan Covey. The former is a little more expensive than Segura or DeJong on both sites, but is coming in at a fantastic raw points projections.

Also, strongly consider Amed Rosario if he finds himself at the top of the order again for the Mets

 

Third Base

Adrian BeltreAdrian Beltre FD 3200 DK 4000
Opponent - SEA (Wade LeBlanc) Park - TEX
FD - 11.28 DK - 8.62
Wade LeBlanc has shown solid control and peripherals this season, but I still think there’s reason to play some of the Rangers on Monday. Beltre is having a down season (he is 39 years old after all) but has still been decent against lefties with a .337 wOBA and 109 wRC+ in that split. He should hit cleanup in the order against the southpaw and over the last two seasons he has a .942 OPS in this platoon. Unlike shortstop, third base isn’t as deep and Beltre’s price isn’t out of the realm of value when you consider the park and platoon splits.

Kyle SeagerKyle Seager FD 2600 DK 3800
Opponent - TEX (Martin Perez) Park - TEX
FD - 11.93 DK - 9.01
He’s coming very cheap and this is such an excellent matchup for the Mariners that I think you can consider him even hitting fifth or sixth in the lineup. Seager is actually platoon neutral over the last couple of seasons, with a slightly higher OPS against lefties so I’m not looking to necessarily avoid him in the lefty-lefty matchup. Perez is worse against lefties, but that isn’t saying a ton because he’s basically horrible against everyone. Seager’s strikeout and walk numbers are trending the wrong directions this season but the batted ball profile is in line with previous years. This is still a fine time to buy him on the low side in such a great park and matchup.

Strongly consider paying all the way up for Nolan Arenado in Coors. Obviously, he’s much better against lefties so this matchup against Musgrove doesn’t exactly jump off the page. But the Rockies have the highest implied run line of the slate.

 

Outfield

Charlie BlackmonCharlie Blackmon FD 4300 DK 5700
Opponent - PIT (Joe Musgrove) Park - COL
FD - 16.24 DK - 12.47
Carlos GonzalezCarlos Gonzalez FD 3400 DK 5600
Opponent - PIT (Joe Musgrove) Park - COL
FD - 12.9 DK - 9.78
For the highest implied run line on the slate, we haven’t talked all that much about the Rockies mostly because their prices have been adjusted for the game in Coors. But I think Blackmon and CarGo are both very much in play on FanDuel especially. I think they’re a little too expensive on DraftKings especially if you go something like double-expensive on DraftKings. But FanDuel’s pricing is a bit softer across the board and if you roster even Thor at pitcher then paying for some of the Rockies’ bats isn’t much of a stretch. Blackmon isn’t having anything close to his 2017 season thanks, in part, to a dip in hard contact this year. That’s something of a concern and has contributed to a lower BABIP as well. But he’s still getting on base about 35% of the time and is on pace for low 30’s home runs.

CarGo meanwhile is having a bounce-back season with an .845 OPS and he’s already matched his 2017 home run total in 200 fewer plate appearances. Basically, both the BABIP and Hr/FB ratio are back to his career norms and that’s helped the overall production tick back up. He could be something like a chalk play on FanDuel if he’s hitting cleanup seeing as how the mid $3K tag is very much a bargain.

Justin UptonJustin Upton FD 3100 DK 4100
Opponent - DET (Matthew Boyd) Park - LAA
FD - 11.97 DK - 8.97
Upton was out of the lineup on Sunday, but it was just a maintenance day and he should be back at it on Monday. He’s crushed lefties over the last two seasons but has actually struggled mightily in that split this season. The hard contact rate is still there in that split (48%) but the BABIP and Hr/FB rate are down a bit compared to previous seasons. This is still a guy who’s tuned up lefties to a .931 OPS and .392 wOBA over the last two seasons. Matthew Boyd is a neutral splits pitcher over his career but has been bad against all sides of the late.

Brett GardnerBrett Gardner FD 3400 DK 4500
Opponent - CHW (Dylan Covey) Park - CHW
FD - 12.63 DK - 9.67
We really haven’t talked about the Yankees much even though they are facing off against Dylan Covey and have one of the highest implied run lines of the slate. Covey has a brutal 1.5:1 K:BB ratio and 4.59 xFIP on the season. He does generate a lot of groundballs which is about the only thing that *saves* him but he still allows a ton of baserunners. Gardner hasn’t replicated the power from last season. But he still walks 11% of the time and has a .340 OBP despite a BABIP 40 points lower than his career average. Plus, hitting leadoff for the Yankees has its advantages. I do think he’s priced down because of some run bad this season and is a very good cash game play on both sites.

Very strongly consider Nelson Cruz against the lefty Perez.

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image sources

  • Trevor Bauer: (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

6 Visitor Comments

  1. ohhh me oh my what kind of shanhooligans and tomfoolery is going on in this slate this side of the US and A. Verry nice. I think if we pick the players who do the MOST GOOD. We can win $1.6 million today. I also like the idea of the pitchers going the GOODER then the other ones. If you play the goodest you will walk away with a lot of coke money.

  2. Do NOT play trevor bauer. he smokes the marijuanas so he is a METH HEAD and will SABOTAGE the indians!!!!! chief wahoo is rolling over in his grave. long live cliff lee

  3. 🤯🤯🤯 and this^^^^^is why we need to keep the kids off drugs people!!!

  4. Interesting theory that smoking weed makes you a meth head. Pot calling the kettle black scenario? Lol

  5. Matthew Boyd has been dominant for a month. Not sure where you see him being bad lately…

  6. Say what now? Pot=Meth-Bauer=Chief Wahoo🤷‍♂️

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