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Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

09/18/2019
Chris Durell

DraftKings and FanDuel MLB Picks for Wednesday 9/18/19

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Pitchers

Gerrit ColeGerrit Cole FD - P 12100 DK - SP 12800
Opponent - TEX (Kolby Allard) Park - HOU
FD - 52.55 DK - 29.76

Just like last night, there is a huge gap in talent between the top pitcher in Cole and the next tier of pitchers propping him up as easily the top choice from a raw points perspective. He is in a dead heat with teammate Justin Verlander for the American League Cy Young award and Cole has most definitely made his case striking out 10 or more batters in six straight and nine of 11 starts since the All-Star Break and has also posted an elite 1.90 ERA/2.27 xFIP in that time as well. To top it off, he also gets a plus matchup against a Rangers team that has posted wRC+ 13% below league average over the last couple weeks and strikes out just over 25% of the time against right-handed pitching for the season. Fire up Cole in all formats.
Aaron CivaleAaron Civale FD - P 8500 DK - SP 9100
Opponent - DET (Spencer Turnbull) Park - CLE
FD - 36.56 DK - 19.88

From our top projected player in raw points to one of our top projected players from a PTS/$ perspective. Civale flew through the Indians minor-league system after being drafted in the third round in 2016 and he is quickly proving why he in the show in 2019. He has gone at least five innings in each of his first eight major-league starts and has yet to allow any opponent score more than two earned runs on him. The elite ERA(1.93) is obviously run-hot for the kid as he sits with a 4.56 xFIP but digging deeper the xwOBA(.270) is only slightly higher than his wOBA(.266) and his xSLG(.316) is over 30 points lower than the LSG(.347). The best news here and the reason why the Indians are early -300 favorites is the matchup against the Tigers who have scored the third-fewest runs since the ASB with an ugly .299 wOBA, 83 wRC+, and 27% K rate. All things considered, Civale is in play in all formats tonight.

Also Consider: Jake Odorizzi(MIN) as a 0275 home favorite against the White Sox or Dylan Bundy(BAL) as a mid-range SP2 option on DraftKings

 

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Catcher/First Base

Trey ManciniTrey Mancini FD 3900 DK 4900
Opponent - TOR (Clay Buchholz) Park - TOR
FD - 11.02 DK - 8.48

At first base, I am going to ride the red-hot Trey Mancini who enters tonight with home runs in four of his last five games and hits in 17 of his last 18 games. Outside of his average(.280) which is still solid, Mancini has set new career highs across the board in home runs(34), RBI(88), runs scored(99), and wRC+(126). He does have slightly more upside against lefties but has still been solid against righties as well with a .358 wOBA, 122 wRC+, with 22 home runs. He also gets a plus matchup at home against Clay Buchholz who has posted a 5.63 ERA/5.24 xFIP over nine starts. Fire up Mancini in all formats.

Omar NarvaezOmar Narvaez FD - C 2800 DK - C 4200
Opponent - PIT (Dario Agrazal) Park - PIT
FD - 8.72 DK - 6.71

The Mariners show up high in my own personal PTS/$ model as they come cheap on both sites. It starts with the matchup as they face Dario Agrazal who started out hot with five straight starts with two or fewer earned runs allowed but has fallen back to Earth since posting a 7.08 ERA/6.27 xFIP over his last seven starts while also giving up nine home runs and striking out just 18 batters(11%). Narvaez is an above-average hitting catcher(.279/.354/.466 slash line) and almost all of those numbers come against righties as he has posted a .299 average, .355 wOBA, and 125 wRC+ in the split. He is my top catcher on DraftKings if paying up and can also be used in a Mariners stack on FanDuel for salary relief with upside.

Also Consider: Anthony Rizzo(CHC)

Second Base

Luis ArraezLuis Arraez FD - 2B 2700 DK - 2B/3B 4100
Opponent - CHW (Ivan Nova) Park - MIN
FD - 11.68 DK - 8.94

The system is very high on the Twins once again on Wednesday and I have to agree and what I like most about them is how deep they are with value in every tier of pricing. At second base, I am looking to Luis Arraez who maybe won't provide us with a ton of upside but has been very consistent with hits in 14 of 16 games in September with eight multi-hit efforts and 10 runs scored. Against righties he has also been pushed to the top of the lineup most starts and it makes sense as he has an elite .390 wOBA and 145 wRC+ in the split. Arraez is my top play at the position in cash games and is obviously a great play in GPP's stack with his teammates.

**Update - Twins will face Ivan Nova as Covey was scratched**

Shed LongShed Long FD - 2B 2700 DK - 2B/OF 3800
Opponent - PIT (Dario Agrazal) Park - PIT
FD - 9.34 DK - 7.15

The theme down the stretch for finding value is a somewhat tricky process as different teams have completely different goals. What I like to do for these value plays, for the most part, is target teams that are out of the playoff picture but looking to their youth to see what they have for the future. Shed Long fits that mold, comes cheap on both sites, and has been on fire with four straight multi-hit games going into Tuesday night(currently 1 for 2 as I write this), and is getting a ton of opportunity leading off in a plus matchup. He is in my player pool in all formats.

Also Consider: Jose Altuve(HOU) as a high-end GPP play or Ozzie Albies(ATL) who has been hot with hits in 11 of his last 13 games

Shortstop

Jorge PolancoJorge Polanco FD - SS 3300 DK - SS 4900
Opponent - CHW (Ivan Nova) Park - MIN
FD - 14.15 DK - 10.97

The Twins are my top-ranked team to target on the main slate and it comes down to a combination of their high-powered offense in a terrific matchup. They face Dylan Covey who has bounced around from being a starter to reliever and while he has not excelled at either, he has really struggled as a starter with a 8.45 ERA, 5.52 xFIP across 12 starts and he has really struggled against lefties .453 wOBA and .615 SLG against. That is where switch-hitting Jorge Polanco comes in as he has not only been better against righties(.382 wOBA, 140 wRC+) but he has also been scorching hot over the last 30 days with a .355/.407/.570 slash line while averaging 13.8 FD/10.5 DK points per game. Polanco is not only my top Twin and Shortstop on this slate, but he is also one of my top overall plays, especially on FanDuel where he is underpriced.

**Update - Twins will face Ivan Nova as Covey was scratched**
Kevin NewmanKevin Newman FD - SS 3200 DK - 2B/SS 4500
Opponent - SEA (Justin Dunn) Park - PIT
FD - 9.86 DK - 7.8

With a large majority of the ownership projected to be on Lindor and Polanco, the pivot I love is Kevin Newman who has been red-hot lately.  With a hit last night, he extended his hitting streak to 19 straight starts and has been producing in a huge way during that time averaging 18.5 FD/14.2 DK points per game. He and the Pirates now get a plus matchup against a combination of Justin Dunn opening, Tommy Milone coming in after and a Mariners bullpen that has been one of the worst in the league all season. Fire up Newman in all formats.

Also Consider: Francisco Lindor/Mike Freeman(CLE) as high-end and value options in all formats

Third Base

Eugenio SuarezEugenio Suarez FD 3900 DK 4800
Opponent - CHC (Jon Lester) Park - CHC
FD - 11.2 DK - 8.42

There are a few different routes to take at the third base position tonight I am starting with Eugenio Suarez for a couple of reasons. First of all, he has been extremely consistent posting a .305/.399/.695 slash line since the start of August and with 18 home runs in that time, now has 47 which is second to only Pete Alonso with the Mets. The other reason for targeting Suarez today is that he is facing a struggling Jon Lester who has given up 12 earned runs over his last two starts and has given up four or more earned runs five times since the start of August. Suarez also feasts on lefties with a .407 wOBA, 149 wRC+, and .296 ISO. He is in play in all formats despite the wind blowing in at Wrigley.
Joey WendleJoey Wendle FD 2700 DK 3100
Opponent - LAD (Tony Gonsolin) Park - LAD
FD - 9.09 DK - 7.09

This is strictly a salary relief play if you are looking that direction at third base. Wendle and the Rays draw a tougher matchup against rookie Tony Gonsolin and while he may not go deep, the Dodgers bullpen has been excellent. What I like here is the opportunity as Wendle is once again projected to hit leadoff for the Rays against the righty and he has been consistent lately with hits in 17 of his last 20 games for a .306/.346/.458 slash line. He is an excellent one-off value play in cash games or can be stacked at low ownership with the top of the Rays order(Pham, Meadows, Choi).

Also Consider: Kris Bryant(CHC)

Outfield

Oscar MercadoOscar Mercado FD 2900 DK 4600
Opponent - DET (Spencer Turnbull) Park - DET
FD - 11.76 DK - 9.01

The Indians are one of three teams currently projected for six or more runs tonight in a terrific matchup against Spencer Turnbull who has given up 4+ earned runs in five straight starts and sits with an ugly 7.87 ERA/5.27 xFIP in the second half. Lindor is my favorite overall play on the team but from a PTS/$ perspective, I am all over Oscar Mercado who is having a solid season overall(.281 avg/.330 OBP) but has been red-hot lately with multi-hit efforts in four straight and five of his last six and comes into tonight with an eight-game hitting streak. He is a great play in all formats, especially on FanDuel under $3K.

Kyle LewisKyle Lewis FD - OF 3500 DK - OF 3800
Opponent - PIT (Dario Agrazal) Park - PIT
FD - 10.24 DK - 7.84

The price on Lewis is going up fast but there is still time to jump on board the hype train before it's at full speed. He entered Tuesday night with hits in five of his first six games since being called up including four home runs and is making management looking very smart drafting him 11th overall in 2016. The M's aren't going anywhere this year which should lead to a ton more opportunities for their young players and Lewis has already made his way up to the cleanup spot in the order and at his price, is in play in all formats against Agrazal who struggles much more against righties.

Also Consider: Yordan Alvarez/George Springer(HOU), Aristides Aquino(CIN), Nicholas Castellanos/Ben Zobrist(CHC)

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