DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Thursday 6/20/19
Every day is unique for daily fantasy baseball, which is both a blessing and a challenge. Although we can’t simply plug and play our favorite studs day in and day out, each slate presents us with a chance for a new gem to vault us up the leaderboards.
Through the use of numberFire’s tools, we can better identify the players primed to succeed each day, making the process of filling out a lineup just that much easier. In addition to our custom optimal lineups, you can check out our batting and pitching heat maps, which show the pieces in the best spot to succeed on that slate. Put on the finishing touches with our games and lineups page to see who's hitting where and what the weather looks like, and you'll have yourself a snazzy looking team to put up some big point totals.
Which names stand out for today on the DraftKings main slate? Let’s check it out, starting with the pitchers.
Pitchers to Target
Charlie Morton ($11,300): Charlie Morton has been an absolute beast for the Tampa Bay Rays this season. He leads the slate with an elite 30.6 percent strikeout rate, allowing 0.62 homers per nine with a 3.57 SIERA to go with it. His matchup against the Oakland Athletics tonight isn't a great one. They have just a 20.9 percent strikeout rate against right-handed pitching, which sits way down as at 24th. However, they haven't offered much pop this season as their .310 wOBA versus righties sits 19th.
Zac Gallen ($7,300): Making his Major League debut tonight, Zac Gallen has a road matchup against the St. Louis Cardinals. In 91 innings in Triple-A this season, Gallen has a sparkling 33.6 percent strikeout rate and 1.77 ERA. He's been getting a tad lucky, but he's got a still solid 3.47 xFIP. The matchup is pretty neutral as the Cardinals have the 17th-best wOBA (.310) against right-handed pitchers, and their 22.7 percent strikeout rate sits 20th. This is a relatively cheap price for a player dominating in the minors, which makes Gallen an intriguing play.
Framber Valdez ($7,100): This may end up being a mistake, but I wanted to highlight two value pitchers tonight. Framber Valdez has been incredible in his starts, and we should look into him despite a very tough matchup against a New York Yankees team that is starting to get healthy. Overall, Valdez doesn't have that great of a strikeout rate (22.2) in the Majors, but in his three starts this season (he worked out of the 'pen some), he has a 26.9 percent strikeout rate. He has an incredible groundball rate of 61.7 percent this season, and he has relied on that to generate most of his outs. Unlikely to be popular due to his matchup, Valdez makes for an intriguing GPP option.
Hitters to Target
Nelson Cruz ($5,200): After struggling last season, Nelson Cruz has been pretty good again this year. He has put up a solid .363 wOBA and .241 ISO against right-handed pitching in his first campaign as a member of the Minnesota Twins organization. He'll take on a struggling right-hander this evening in the Kansas City Royals' Glenn Sparkman. Sparkman has given up a 41.5 percent hard-hit rate and 33.6 percent fly-ball rate in 2019. In addition to that, his 5.24 SIERA and 13.0 percent strikeout rate are among the worst marks on the slate.
Anthony Rizzo ($5,100): Anthony Rizzo is absolutely destroying right-handed pitchers this season. He has put up an elite .408 wOBA and .292 ISO against righties in 238 plate appearances this year, so it is not like this is a super small sample size inflating his numbers. He's going to take on New York Mets right-hander Walker Lockett, who has just 15 innings in the Majors. In 2018, Lockett's Triple-A numbers weren't great -- 20.6 percent strikeout rate and 4.30 xFIP -- and the Chicago Cubs are a top stack today.
Rhys Hoskins ($4,600): Rhys Hoskins has been better against left-handed pitching this season, but in his career, he has typically smashed righties. He has a career .384 wOBA and .283 ISO against righties and a .359 wOBA and .217 ISO against lefties. Tonight, he's going to see a right-handed pitcher who has been getting very lucky. The owner of a .248 BABAIP and 3.68 ERA, Erick Fedde is rocking a 5.33 SIERA while struggling his way through games with a 9.3 percent walk rate and a horrific 13.9 percent strikeout rate.
Jose Altuve ($3,800): After a long stint on the DL, Jose Altuve is back and is cheap. Chad Green will open for the New York Yankees, but this could very well end up being a bullpen game for the the Bronx Bombers. It is tough to ignore Altuve at this price. The Astros are slowly starting to get healthy, and when they are, they are one of the deepest and most potent offenses in the Majors. Altuve, in 2018, put up a .374 wOBA and .140 ISO against right-handed pitching with a .336 wOBA and .120 ISO against lefties. While there may be some rust to shake off, he's one of the best hitters in baseball, and he's cheap.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ($3,500): Vlad Jr. has certainly had his ups and downs this season, with a bit more success against right-handed pitchers compared to left-handed pitchers. He has a .293 wOBA and .190 ISO against left-handed pitching, which is not all that enticing, but at $3,500, his upside is awfully appealing. He'll face Los Angeles Angels lefty Jose Suarez, who has allowed a 52.2 percent fly-ball rate in 16 career MLB frames and had just a 20.2 percent strikeout rate across 23 innings in Triple-A earlier this season.
Travis Shaw ($3,200): Travis Shaw has been pretty terrible this year, posting a .293 wOBA and .151 ISO against right-handed pitching. Though after a brief DL stint in May, he has been a bit better with a .332 wOBA and .125 ISO in the month of June. Still, that does not compare to the stellar .374 wOBA and .285 ISO he put up against righties last season. Shaw has an interesting matchup against Cincinnati Reds righty Tanner Roark -- a pitcher with a 37.6 percent hard-hit rate and 29.6 percent line-drive rate this season.
Ryan Sheppard is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Ryan Sheppard also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username donkshow_. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.