Baseball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Doug Norrie

DraftKings and FanDuel MLB Picks for Friday 5/20/22

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Nestor CortesNestor Cortes FD 10200 DK 10600
Opponent - CHW (Dallas Keuchel) Park - CHW
FD - 39.95 DK - 21.84

Well, this guy has been a little piece of awesome this season. Cortes comes into the game with a 1.35 ERA (2.78 xFIP) and has had about as good a 40IP stretch as you’ll see in the majors. The K’s have spiked to over 11 per nine thanks in part to throwing a cutter much more than he ever has in the past. He’s a -214 home favorite against the White Sox, the best money line odds on the day and he’ll almost definitely be one of the chalkier plays for this slate. It makes sense considering what he’s doing on the mound so far this season.

Eric LauerEric Lauer FD 10400 DK 10400
Opponent - WSH (Erick Fedde) Park - WSH
FD - 38.12 DK - 20.03

Lauer has been another guy who’s had a completely out of nowhere season so far. His 2.52 xFIP is easily the best of his career, and all of a sudden he’s a strikeout machine. The dude has a 23% K rate for his career, but this season it’s jumped to almost 36%. It looks like there are two reasons for this. The first is he’s just throwing harder than ever before. The fastball is averaging 94 mph when it used to be around 92. And he’s also completely changed his pitch selection, throwing a cutter much mire, ditching the changeup and adding a slider as a bigger offering. It’s working and I think these gains are sustainable seeing as how he’s just augmented his approach.

Catcher/First Base

Ty FranceTy France FD 3400 DK 3600
Opponent - BOS (Michael Wacha) Park - BOS
FD - 13.12 DK - 10

France has been a sneaky-good hitter over the last couple of seasons and this time around is no different. He’s putting up a .871 OPS with eight home runs already while putting the ball in play around 82% of the time. And facing off in a righty-righty matchup against Wacha is no issue either considering he’s right around platoon neutral for his career. The ISO is lower against righties but the walk rate is higher, evening things out a bit. He should be hitting second in the Mariner’s lineup here on Friday.

Dominic SmithDominic Smith FD 2500 DK 3300
Opponent - COL (Germán Márquez) Park - COL
FD - 10.02 DK - 7.63

He’s fixing to hit lower in the order than we would typically like for cash games, but having a go of it in Coors mitigates this to some degree. The power expectation greatly increases because of the park, and he’s coming cheap enough on both sites to warrant a play even if the plate appearance expectation is lower because of the lineup slot. There’s some chance he moves up because of the matchup, but even hitting 7th or 8th is acceptable.

Second Base

Jeff McNeilJeff McNeil FD 3400 DK 4500
Opponent - COL (Germán Márquez) Park - COL
FD - 10.24 DK - 7.88

The Mets head into Coors Field and, of course, have the highest run line of of the day for obvious reasons. The offense has been good and this is the mile-high air we are talking about. McNeil looks like he’ll hit fifth in the order against the righty Marquez and isn’t coming at prices that will break the bank. He doesn’t have much in the way of power and yet is still sporting a high-700s OPS thanks to a lot of contact and the ability to still get on base because he’s very tough to strikeout. That should play well here in this park where contact is the whole name of the game.

José AltuveJosé Altuve FD 4200 DK 5400
Opponent - TEX (Martin Pérez) Park - TEX
FD - 12.67 DK - 9.66

Altuve is having an awesome season, rocking a .935 OPS so far thanks to eight early home runs and a 10% walk rate. He’s back to being among the best hitters in the game and for his career has absolutely crushed lefty pitching for his career. In that split he has a .376 wOBA and .879 OPS while only striking out 12% of the time. Those numbers are completely elite and Martin Perez isn’t the kind of pitcher that can get anything past this guy. Altuve is expensive for a good reason.


Francisco LindorFrancisco Lindor FD 4200 DK 5100
Opponent - COL (Germán Márquez) Park - COL
FD - 12.96 DK - 9.83

Lindor is one of the highest projected players on the slate because of the Mets heading into Coors Field for the weekend. He hasn’t been able to recreate the 30+ home run season from 2019, but there is still pop in the bat and he’s tough to K, going down on strikes only 19% of the time this season. He also has an 11% walk rate and a mid-700s OPS despite the BABIP sitting about 30 points lower than his career averages. I suspect because of the park that he’ll be a popular play on this slate.

Javier BáezJavier Báez FD 2700 DK 4500
Opponent - CLE (Aaron Civale) Park - CLE
FD - 11.97 DK - 9.17

It’s been a struggle for Baez so far this season with an OPS in the mid .500s through his first 119 plate appearances. He’s actually striking out less than his career rate, but the BABIP is about 80 points lower than his career average, while the ground ball rate is up as well. Plus, the Hr/FB numbers are way, way down so it’s all contributing to just some bad stuff all around. That being said, he’s still hitting near the top of this order and the matchup against Civale is a good one. Plus, the struggles have tanked his FanDuel price.

Third Base

Alex BregmanAlex Bregman FD 3600 DK 4800
Opponent - TEX (Martin Pérez) Park - TEX
FD - 12.2 DK - 9.16

Bregman, like Altuve, has crushed lefty pitching for his career over a pretty big sample size. He has a whopping .957 OPS and .399 wOBA in that split, walking 12% of the time. And this season, he’s taking free passes at a 15% rate, the same as the K%. This is pretty tough to do in the modern game. Martin Perez only strikes out batters at a rate of seven per nine and could be in trouble against the top of the Astros’ lineup.

Eduardo EscobarEduardo Escobar FD 3000 DK 3700
Opponent - COL (Germán Márquez) Park - COL
FD - 11.16 DK - 8.45

We are heavy on Mets here and it’s obviously for a good reason. Heading into Coors with the highest run expectation will do that and it essentially puts their entire lineup in play. The switch-hitting Escobar should hit 6th for New York today and even with his struggles this season makes for solid play. He’s striking out a bit too much and the OPS is down, but he’s also walking 13% of the time and this is Coors were are talking about.


Brandon NimmoBrandon Nimmo FD 3700 DK 4700
Opponent - COL (Germán Márquez) Park - COL
FD - 12.89 DK - 9.74

Starling MarteStarling Marte FD 3800 DK 4900
Opponent - COL (Germán Márquez) Park - COL
FD - 13.39 DK - 10.41

Nimmo is just an on-base machine, making him one of the better leadoff hitters in the whole game. He’s basically been getting on-base at a 40% clip over the last few seasons thanks to a 15% walk rate, and this year he’s even cut down on the strikeouts as well. He has some power, but not tons though Coors Field is the kind of place that can change that quick. Nimmo is expensive because of the Coors price increase but is still very much worth it because of his batted-ball profile and patience.

Meanwhile, Marte should hit second in the order to go lefty-righty and has significant fantasy upside in this matchup. For starters, he’s a reverse platoon guy for his career, hitting better against righties where he sports an .805 OPS and .348 wOBA, both of which are considerably higher than what he does against lefties. And he’s a menace on the basepaths as well, stealing 47 bags last season and adding another five already this year. He’s “slowing” down in this respect, but it’s still part of his profile. If you can afford it, the Mets are the team to stack.

Robbie GrossmanRobbie Grossman FD 2400 DK 4000
Opponent - CLE (Aaron Civale) Park - CLE
FD - 11.32 DK - 8.58

Grossman is coming too cheap on FanDuel if he’s still going to be in the leadoff slot for the Tigers. They have a decent mid-4s implied run line heading into the matchup against Civale and Grossman has solid plate appearance expectation here. The numbers are grizzly, I won’t lie to you on that front. He’s K-ing a ton and the slugging is lower than the OBP, never a good sign. But I’m buying on the cheap here for FD because I think it warrants a play even with the struggles.






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