Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

James Davis

DraftKings and FanDuel MLB Picks for Monday 5/24/21

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Blake SnellBlake Snell FD - P 9300 DK - SP 8900
Opponent - MIL (Brandon Woodruff) Park - MIL
FD - 36.34 DK - 20.11

What a dream buy-low opportunity. After floundering for most of the beginning of the season, Snell roared back with a 6 IP, 11 K, 1 ER start against the Rockies his last time out. If he's still capable of starts like that, these prices are arguably 25% too low. The Brewers, meanwhile, are a fantastic match-up. They've struck out at the 6th highest rate this season while amassing the 3rd worst wOBA. I love Snell in every format at these prices.

Frankie MontasFrankie Montas FD - P 8400 DK - SP 6200
Opponent - SEA (Yusei Kikuchi) Park - OAK
FD - 35.17 DK - 18.65

While it's true that Montas became overrated during his run-hot 2019 campaign, he's still a pretty good pitcher that we can consider on a slate where the best pitchers are over-priced. He's still a 28 year old pitcher that has struck out almost exactly a batter per inning for his career, and the match-up here looks fanastic as well. The Mariners pair the league's worst wOBA with the 5th highest strikeout rate, making Montas a fantastic pitcher 2 option on DraftKings.

If you must pay up at pitcher, consider Lance Lynn.


Catcher/First Base

José AbreuJosé Abreu FD - 1B 3700 DK - 1B 5100
Opponent - STL (Kwang Hyun Kim) Park - CHW
FD - 11.27 DK - 8.53

With an .810 OPS, it hasn't been a banner year for the White Sox's Cuban first baseman. He has run .026 below his career BABIP levels, though, so his true performance this year probably lies north of the .810 OPS. As for the match-up, Kwang Hyun Kim is actually pretty good! He's run very hot on the ERA, but the 4.2 career xFIP so far is more than respectable for a guy who joined the Majors at the age of 31. You'll forgive me if I trust Abreu here, though, whose OPS goes .077 points higher with the platoon in his favor.

C.J. CronC.J. Cron FD - 1B 2800 DK - 1B 4000
Opponent - NYM (David Peterson) Park - NYM
FD - 8.95 DK - 6.75

If you're like most of the fantasy community, you've been in a deep sleep when it comes to CJ Cron this year. CJ has an outstanding .895 OPS during his Rockies tenure, and has raked lefties for a 1.171 figure. Today he'll go up against David Peterson, a young, non-prospect who has averaged fewer than 5 innings per start this season. At these prices, Cron presents a floor and a ceiling that are more than worth what you're paying.

Also considered: Miguel Sano, assuming you don't actually plan on watching his at bats.

Second Base

Jonathan VillarJonathan Villar FD - 2B 2800 DK - 3B 3400
Opponent - COL (Austin Gomber) Park - NYM
FD - 8.11 DK - 6.09

Well, it's officially "one of those days" at second base. I'd like to say we're playing Villar as cheap value, but he's actually the second highest priced second baseman on the slate after Ryan McMahon. To make this a viable play you need Villar to be batting leadoff, but if he is, I'm actually moderately excited. The switch-hitting Villar has been almost exactly platoon neutral for his career, and stole 40 bases in his last full season. Gomber, meanwhile, is league-average on his very best days, and not a reason to fade Villar here.

Jonathan SchoopJonathan Schoop FD - 2B 2600 DK - 1B/2B 3300
Opponent - CLE (Sam Hentges) Park - DET
FD - 9.82 DK - 7.51

We've been running Schoop at minimum prices against bad lefties since he joined the Majors, and we might trot him out there tonight. Schoop has been flat out terrible this season, but he should be batting ~5th against Sam Hentges and the Indians. Hentges is, quite simply, terrible. He has a 5.57 xFIP and an astounding 2.93 HR/9 through a short sample this season, and looks to be bad enough that even the Tigers should be able to take advantage.


Francisco LindorFrancisco Lindor FD - SS 2900 DK - SS 4900
Opponent - COL (Austin Gomber) Park - NYM
FD - 11.24 DK - 8.53

Well, if there were ever a time to try and catch a falling knife, now would be it. Lindor has been a colossal disappointment to Mets fans (and DFS players!) this season, but there are signs of life. His walkrate is at an all-time high, his BABIP is at an all-time low, and he's striking out at his lowest rate since 2017. The problem is that there has been no power whatsoever. At these prices, though, do we even care? Like we mentioned earlier, Gomber is pretty darned bad, and Lindor should get a lot of bites at the apple here.

Trevor StoryTrevor Story FD - SS 3700 DK - SS 5300
Opponent - NYM (David Peterson) Park - NYM
FD - 11.35 DK - 8.63

On a day where it's honestly tough to get excited about any big money bats, we might be in a position where we'd like to go against the grain and play Trevor Story on the road. While it's true that his best efforts tend to come at home, he is still in a positive platoon situation against a young pitcher with no credentials. It's not like you have to invest the farm to get Story, either, making him an interesting mid-range value play.

Also considered: Tim Anderson.

Third Base

José RamírezJosé Ramírez FD - 3B 4000 DK - 3B 5800
Opponent - DET (Spencer Turnbull) Park - DET
FD - 13.65 DK - 10.26

Man, it feels good to write up a guy who has A) not been terrible this season, B) isn't in a terrible match-up, and C) is reasonably priced. "But James," you might be whining, "how can you call Turnbull anything other than a terrible match-up considering he just threw a no-hitter?" Well, hypothetical whiner, in spite of the no-hitter Turnbull's xFIP is still just 3.87 this year and 4.42 for his career. He's league average, at best. And have I mentioned that Ramirez has been better against righties for his career? I love Ramirez in any format.

Josh DonaldsonJosh Donaldson FD - 3B 2700 DK - 3B 4400
Opponent - BAL (John Means) Park - MIN
FD - 11.85 DK - 8.77

Donaldson might get my vote for "guy who is still pretty awesome, but nobody knows it." The reason for this is his incredibly bad BABIP luck over the last two shortened seasons. A career .297 BABIP guy, Donaldson is sitting at .247 this season. And he's still flirting with an .800 OPS! People are also going to be unreasonably spooked by John Means, here. Yes, Means has been a great story so far this season, but luck is playing a huge role. His ERA front-runs his xFIP by a full 2 runs, and while he's above league-average, he's not enough to scare me off Donaldson with the platoon in his favor at these prices.

Also considered: Matt Chapman.


Nelson CruzNelson Cruz FD - OF 3500 DK - OF 6100
Opponent - BAL (John Means) Park - MIN
FD - 12.14 DK - 9.08

Nelson Cruz was put on planet Earth to hit left handed pitching, and he has the opportunity to do just that against John Means tonight. Yes, Means is good, but as we discussed earlier, he's far from the sub-2 ERA guy he's been so far this year. The 40 year old Cruz has showed some signs of slowing this year, but he still has a .933 OPS against left-handed pitching. On a day where outfield is pretty rough, Cruz is a beacon in the darkness.

Cedric MullinsCedric Mullins FD - OF 2600 DK - OF 4100
Opponent - MIN (Matt Shoemaker) Park - MIN
FD - 10.54 DK - 8.18

Did I mention outfield is rough? It's rough. But hey, Cedric Mullins really isn't so bad at this FanDuel price. The O's lefty has an .839 OPS this year, and has been .134 OPS points better against righties for his career. And if ever there were a dream match-up, this would be it. Shoemaker has been an abomination this year, striking out fewer than 6 batters per 9 while posting a 5.43 xFIP. Mullins is a lock for me.

Eddie RosarioEddie Rosario FD - OF 2400 DK - OF 3400
Opponent - DET (Spencer Turnbull) Park - DET
FD - 11.54 DK - 8.79

I did warn you that outfield was rough, right? I thought about giving up after two guys, but as a courtesy I'll toss you Rosario as a throw-away option. He's a cheap bat with the platoon in his favor against a mediocre pitcher, and if recent trends hold he'll be batting toward the middle of the lineup. And I guess there's some reason for optimistim? Rosario is just 29 years old, and hit 32 home runs two years ago. His .244 BABIP is almost .060 points off his career levels. And he's just awfully cheap. I won't be excited to click on his name, but given the alternatives, it might be the play.





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