Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

06/20/2019
Chris Durell

DraftKings and FanDuel MLB Picks for Thursday 6/20/19

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Pitchers

Walker BuehlerWalker Buehler FD - P 11400 DK - SP 10500
Opponent - SF (Madison Bumgarner) Park - LAD
FD - 39.49 DK - 21.46
With the Dodgers lead in the division sitting in double digits, we are likely going to see some limitations on the pitching staff down the stretch but as for tonight, all systems go! Buehler has been outstanding this season with a 3.06 ERA and supporting 3.44 xFIP while averaging 5.9 innings/92.6 pitches per start. The upside(26% K rate) isn't that of other elite pitchers but he limits baserunners with a low 4% walk rate and elite .92 WHIP. Tonight, he gets a plus matchup against a Giants team that has struggled offensively all season but has been even worse lately ranking dead last in wOBA(.269), wRC+(65), and ISO(.108) over the last 14 days with a 25% K rate. Going even further, Buehler has an electric four-seam fastball(avg 96.7 mph) and Giants rank dead last against fastballs this season. Fire up Buehler in all formats.

*It will be Julio Urias making the start for the Dodgers shifting my cash game focus to Jake Odorizzi tonight. Urias can be used in GPP formats.*

Jose SuarezJose Suarez FD - P 6300 DK - SP 8500
Opponent - TOR (Clayton Richard) Park - TOR
FD - 26.3 DK - 13.61

For value tonight, my eyes immediately locked on Jose Suarez who is a -150 favorite making his fourth career start. He has given up eight earned runs in 16 innings(4.50 ERA/5.56 xFIP) but the good news is that he has limited opponents to a 26% hard contact rate and while the K rate(20%) is below average he is operating with an elite 14% swinging strike rate telling me there are more K's to come for the 21-year-old. More good news as he gets a plus matchup against a Jays team that struggles to score runs and has been a bottom five offense against lefties with a .288 wOBA, 79 wRC+, and 14% K rate. Suarez makes a value SP2 on DraftKings and an excellent punt GPP play on FanDuel allowing you to stack any team you wish.

Also Consider: Jake Odorizzi(MIN) 

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Catcher/First Base

Matt AdamsMatt Adams FD - 1B 3000 DK - 1B 4600
Opponent - PHI (Nick Pivetta) Park - WSH
FD - 12.15 DK - 9.17

I am not overly excited about this position tonight, at least for cash games. Because of this, I will be going the PTS/$ value route and the first name that stands out is Matt Adams who comes in with a five-game hitting streak and faces Nick Pivetta who has underperformed to a 5.00 ERA on the season and while there is regression to the mean in sight, he still sits with a below average .361 xwOBA and .489 xSLG. The best part is the upside of stacking against him as he has given up multiple home runs in four of his eight starts. Adams is in play in all formats.
Kevan SmithKevan Smith FD - C 2400 DK - C 3700
Opponent - TOR (Clayton Richard) Park - TOR
FD - 8.14 DK - 6.34

At catcher, I will be turning to Kevan Smith who should be back in the lineup tonight facing a lefty. He has crushed in the split posting a .452 wOBA, 193 wRC+, and 1.062 OPS since the start of last season. He and the Angels face Clayton Richard who has given up 12 earned runs over his last two starts and a home run in four straight starts. Smith is my top catcher from a PTS/$ perspective on DraftKings in all formats and he makes an excellent salary relief play on FanDuel.

Also Consider: Edwin Encarnacion/Gary Sanchez(NYY)

Second Base

Mike MoustakasMike Moustakas FD - 2B 3700 DK - 2B/3B 5200
Opponent - CIN (Tanner Roark) Park - MIL
FD - 12.12 DK - 9.19

With all the top talent in good spots on this slate, I probably won't be turning to Moose in cash but the Brewers an excellent GPP stack tonight. Also, if I am playing any Brewer in cash, it will be Yelich. The matchup comes against Tanner Roark who is overperforming in his first season with the Reds considering he is giving up a career-high 37% hard contact rate but career low 6% HR/FB rate. He is also giving teams a ton of opportunities with a 1.39 WHIP and has especially struggled against lefties giving up a .305 average, .381 wOBA, and .484 SLG. Moose provides a ton of power as he has once again reached the 20 home run mark for the fourth straight season(full seasons). If you are considering a Brewers stack in cash, Moose does provide some safety striking out under 20% of the time which gives him a slightly above average .350 on-base percentage.
Derek DietrichDerek Dietrich FD - 2B 2800 DK - 2B 4300
Opponent - MIL (Jimmy Nelson) Park - MIL
FD - 9.93 DK - 7.59

I get he has been struggling lately dropping his average to .235 on the season but it is hard to ignore the price on FanDuel considering the matchup. He and the Reds and 7th in implied runs as they face Jimmy Nelson who is making his third start since returning from a shoulder injury in 2017. Through two starts, he has already walked six and given up eight earned runs in seven innings. Dietrich doesn't normally play against lefties but thrives against righties with an elite .411 wOBA, 154 wRC+, and 1.021 OPS this season. I am not as thrilled about his price on DraftKings tonight but will definitely have a lot of exposure on FanDuel in all formats in the sub $3K range.

Also Consider: Brandon Lower(TB)

Shortstop

Jorge PolancoJorge Polanco FD - SS 4000 DK - SS 4900
Opponent - KC (Glenn Sparkman) Park - KC
FD - 12.11 DK - 9.39

The Angels, Twins, and Nats are neck and neck at the top of the implied run rankings right now and exposure to all three is nearly a must. For the Twins, I always start with Polanco against rigthies as he enters with a silly .414 wOBA, 162 wRC+, and .266 ISO in the split. He has also been a model of consistency with hits in 18 of his last 19 games with seven multi-hit efforts. He is expensive on both sites but a case can definitely be made for him as a top pay-up in all formats.
Marcus SemienMarcus Semien FD - SS 3500 DK - SS 4100
Opponent - TB (Charlie Morton) Park - OAK
FD - 9.33 DK - 7.16

One of the contrarian approaches I like tonight is targeting the A's who will most definitely be low owned against Charlie Morton and the Rays. Morton has looked human at times and the A's come in hot having scored six or more runs in five of their last 10 games(6.4 per game average). A big part of that has been Marcus Semien who extended his hit streak to 16 games last night pushing his average up to .280 and on-base percentage to .365 for the season. I will be going another direction in cash games but love the A's, especially Semien, in contrarian GPP stacks.

Third Base

Renato NunezRenato Nunez FD 2500 DK 3900
Opponent - SEA (Wade LeBlanc) Park - SEA
FD - 10.18 DK - 7.79

If you have the salary and looking for a big bat, Anthony Rendon vs. Nick Pivetta and Miguel Sano vs. Glenn Sparkman stand out. The only issue is both are very expensive so at least for cash games, I will be going in a different direction.

I have mentioned it before but will keep beating the dead horse about a select view of the Orioles who have crushed lefties and come at a discount. Nunez is one of those and enters tonight with a .361 wOBA, 128 wRC+, and .290 isolated power. He also gets a boost as he has been hitting in the cleanup or five-hole against lefties and at these prices, he is a terrific value in all formats.

Also Consider: Matt Chapman(OAK) as a GPP pivot like Semien who I mentioned earlier or DJ LeMahieu(NYY) at the top of a much more healthy Yankees lineup

Outfield

Max KeplerMax Kepler FD - OF 4100 DK - OF 5300
Opponent - KC (Glenn Sparkman) Park - KC
FD - 12.38 DK - 9.38
Nelson CruzNelson Cruz FD - OF 3900 DK - OF 5200
Opponent - KC (Glenn Sparkman) Park - KC
FD - 13.78 DK - 10.37
Eddie RosarioEddie Rosario FD - OF 3900 DK - OF 4800
Opponent - KC (Glenn Sparkman) Park - KC
FD - 12.62 DK - 9.72

The Twins league-leading offense(421 runs, 138 HR) is in a great spot tonight against Glenn Sparkman. He has spent most of the season out of the bullpen but made his way into the rotation at the end of May and has struggled mightily with a 5.50 ERA/6.01 xFIP while giving up four home runs and a 50% hard contact rate.

The Twins outfield is stacked when it comes to fantasy production and it starts with Max Kepler who has been the regular leadoff hitter and enters with a solid .279 average and .362 on-base percentage while also providing a ton of power with 18 home runs and 49 RBI. Cruz can also be considered in all formats and has been terrific since returning from injury with a .300/.386/.700 slash line. Rosario has been the least consistent of the three and GPP only for me tonight as he enters with a .265 average and .298 OBP but has flashed big power with 19 home runs and 52 RBI.
Jesse WinkerJesse Winker FD - OF 2700 DK - OF 4100
Opponent - MIL (Jimmy Nelson) Park - MIL
FD - 10.2 DK - 7.76

For value in the outfield, I will turn to Jesse Winker if he is back near the top of the lineup. Despite a less than intriguiing slash line(.242/.316/.460), he is coming off a three-hit night on Wednesday and has eight hits in his last 13 at-bats with two home runs and seven runs batted in. I talked about the matchup vs. Jimmy Nelson above and until he knocks the rust off, I will be targeting against him. Winker's best value, like his teammate Dietrich, comes on FanDuel in the sub $3K range.

Also Consider: Christian Yelich(MIL)/Mike Trout(LAA) as elite plays at the position, Juan Soto(WSH) in a great spot in the second tier of pricing, or Jason Heyward(CHC) as a value play

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