Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Joel Bartilotta

DraftKings and FanDuel MLB Picks for Friday 6/21/19

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Friday's are the best night for baseball and we have yet another spectacular slate here. The greatest thing about this slate might be that we have almost no weather to worry about. Kansas City is the only game with rain projected in the forecast and that's a DFS players dream. We actually don't even have any recommendations from that game and that makes things so much easier for us!


Chris SaleChris Sale FD - P 12000 DK - SP 12000
Opponent - TOR (Trent Thornton) Park - BOS
FD - 48.2 DK - 27.91

Sale is the highest-priced player on the slate and it's easy to understand why. Not only has Sale been one of the best pitchers in the Majors for nearly a decade, he's actually in the midst of one of his best stretches ever. In fact, Sale has pitched to a 2.24 ERA and 0.83 WHIP over his last 11 starts, striking out 116 batters across 72.1 innings. That K rate is absolutely absurd and it really makes him a tempting option against a Toronto club who ranks 21st in K rate. In addition, the Blue Jays sit 27th in runs scored and 26th in wOBA, which is why Sale enters this game as a -350 favorite. 

Aaron NolaAaron Nola FD - P 8700 DK - SP 8000
Opponent - MIA (Sandy Alcantara) Park - PHI
FD - 36.75 DK - 19.9

Nola's ugly numbers this year will not make you want to use him but this guy is too good of a pitcher to be priced this cheaply. The Philly ace is typically a $10,000 when he's right and it's easy to see why when looking at his career numbers. In fact, Nola has a 3.37 career xFIP to match his 26 percent K rate. That shows the talent that this guy possesses and we truly believe that he'll get closer to those numbers with a matchup against the Marlins. So far this season, Miami ranks last in runs scored, OPS and wOBA. That puts Nola and the Phillies as a -200 favorite in this game, with Miami projected for fewer than four runs. 

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Catcher/First Base

Joey VottoJoey Votto FD - 1B 3100 DK - 1B 4000
Opponent - MIL (Chase Anderson) Park - MIL
FD - 11.32 DK - 8.49

The demise of Joey Votto has been greatly exaggerated and recent results would indicate that he's back to top form. Over his last 20 games, the Reds first baseman is hitting .365 while providing a .969 OPS. That's the All-Star Votto that we've seen in the past, as he has an OBP well above .400 and an OPS north of .900 against righties for his career. That sort of upside is unseen from a player in this price range and we have to love him against a guy with a 4.51 xFIP and 1.39 WHIP in one of the best hitter's parks in the Majors. 

Eric ThamesEric Thames FD - 1B 2700 DK - 1B 4500
Opponent - CIN (Sonny Gray) Park - MIL
FD - 10.24 DK - 7.68

This is one of those occasions where we love Thames on one site and not another. You can tell which one by looking at these prices, as Thames is one of the best values on the board on FanDuel. We're talking about a guy with a .524 SLG and .883 OPS against right-handers since joining the Brewers in 2017 and that makes this price really hard to understand. Sonny Gray is not a guy we necessarily need to worry about either, with the Cincy righty posting a 4.47 ERA and 1.36 WHIP dating back to 2016. 

If you're in need of a catcher, J.T. Realmuto is our highest projected catcher on the board. 

Second Base

Derek DietrichDerek Dietrich FD - 2B 2800 DK - 1B/2B 4400
Opponent - MIL (Chase Anderson) Park - MIL
FD - 9.85 DK - 7.54

This is another case of a guy being too cheap with the platoon advantage in his favor. Much like Thames. Dietrich usually only bats against righties but is one of the best hitters in the league under these circumstances. So far this season. Dietrich is posting a .646 SLG en route to a 1.006 OPS against right-handed pitching. That's elite production and it makes for a great two-man stack with Votto and the Reds hitting in a hitter's haven like Miller Park. 

Rougned OdorRougned Odor FD - 2B 2800 DK - 2B 4000
Opponent - CHW (Reynaldo Lopez) Park - TEX
FD - 11.57 DK - 8.85

The second base positon is an absolute nightmare and it would be hard to imagine recomending Odor if he played any other position. What we like about Odor is all the potential he provides. This is a guy who's averaging 28 homers and 14 steals per year since 2016 and it's just a matter of time before he gets closer to those numbers. Facing a righty should only boost his chances, as Odor is way more likely to steal a bag against a righty and has an OPS 100 points higher with the platoon advantage in his favor. Facing Reynaldo Lopez is a nice plus as well, with the White Sox righty pitching to a 6.31 ERA and 1.59 WHIP in a hitter's park like Globe Life Park. 


Didi GregoriusDidi Gregorius FD - SS 3000 DK - SS 3800
Opponent - HOU (Brad Peacock) Park - NYY
FD - 10.68 DK - 8.18

Gregorius is steadily dropping down the Yankees order but it's no fault of his own. New York is not only adding bats from other teams, they're also getting numerous studs off the IL. While you may see Gregorius bat seventh or eighth, that's really nothing to worry about, considering this is the best lineup in baseball. Gregorius has done all he can too, posting a .293 AVG in limited time this season while providing an .806 OPS since 2016. That's huge for a player in this price range, especially considering he has an .851 OPS against righties in that span. 

J.P. CrawfordJ.P. Crawford FD - SS 2700 DK - SS 3400
Opponent - BAL (Undecided) Park - SEA
FD - 9.62 DK - 7.34

This is a total punt play, as Crawford has too much talent to be priced this cheap. The Seattle utility man has actually batted second in seven straight games and that alone puts him in play in this price range. Picking a guy for just batting second is a little full-hardy though, as we love him in this matchup. Baltimore currently owns the worst pitching staff in the league, as they're well on their way to setting records in home runs and runs allowed. That puts any bat against them in consideration and the fact that their starter is TBD can only mean bad things. 

Third Base

Asdrubal CabreraAsdrubal Cabrera FD - 3B 2900 DK - 3B 4100
Opponent - CHW (Reynaldo Lopez) Park - TEX
FD - 12.78 DK - 9.78

We definitely want to use Rangers against Reynaldo Lopez here, as Cabrera is one of the best values on the board. While the Texas shortstop is a solid switch-hitter, he's proven to be a much better hitter from the left side. In fact, Cabrera has an .820 OPS against righties since the beginning of last year, posting a .937 OPS at Globe Life Park so far this season. Anyone would enjoy hitting in that stadium and that's why the Rangers have the highest projected run total on this slate. 

Tommy La StellaTommy La Stella FD - 3B 3200 DK - 2B/3B 4300
Opponent - STL (Michael Wacha) Park - STL
FD - 11.83 DK - 9.11

This guy has really surprised me this season and he's truly indicative of what MLB has turned in to. La Stella has actually already surpassed his career-high in home runs, as he's actually on pace to obliterate his total carer homers in just one season. It's evident that this guy has made some serious changes at the plate and it's impossible to argue with a .510 SLG and .861 OPS. He's actually done most of that damage against right-handers, posting a .921 OPS against them so far this season. Facing Michael Wacha is simply the icing on the cake, with the Cardinals righty pitching to a 6.00 ERA and 1.73 WHIP this season. 


Nomar MazaraNomar Mazara FD - OF 3000 DK - OF 4300
Opponent - CHW (Reynaldo Lopez) Park - TEX
FD - 12.93 DK - 9.85

Shin-Soo ChooShin-Soo Choo FD - OF 3700 DK - OF 5000
Opponent - CHW (Reynaldo Lopez) Park - TEX
FD - 13.98 DK - 10.59

Let's cap off our Texas bats with these two lefty outfielders. It's easy to see why we love the Rangers when you consider the fact that they're projected for six runs, as they have a supreme matchup in arguably the best hitting park in the Majors. Facing Lopez is the main reason they're projected so highly, with the Chicago righty posting a .372 xwOBA this season. That's one of the worst marks around and it's a wonder how he's still in the rotation with that number matching his 6.31 ERA and 1.59 WHIP. Choo is our favorite play in the lineup, as he'll bat atop the order and has an OPS north of .910 against righties since last season. Mazara isn't quite as good, but his .779 OPS against righties since his call-up is nothing to be embarrassed by. 

Andrew BenintendiAndrew Benintendi FD - OF 3500 DK - OF 4700
Opponent - TOR (Trent Thornton) Park - BOS
FD - 14.34 DK - 10.95

Mookie BettsMookie Betts FD - OF 4100 DK - OF 5000
Opponent - TOR (Trent Thornton) Park - BOS
FD - 16.62 DK - 12.64

After stacking two Rangers, let's get a couple of Red Sox outfielders into our build. Facing Trent Thornton is the reason we really like these guys, with the Toronto righty pitching to a 4.80 ERA and 1.52 WHIP over his last 13 starts. That's why the Red Sox are projected for more than five runs in a stadium like Fenway Park, as these two should do most of that damage atop the lineup. While both of these studs have had down years by their standards, that has lowered their prices to numbers that we simply can't pass up. Benintendi's .366 OBP and .836 career OPS against righties puts him squarely in play while Betts .997 OPS since last season shows why he's one of the most feared hitters in the game. The MVP candidate is starting to heat up too, collecting four runs, one triple, one homer, three RBI, three BB and two steals over his last three games. 


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