FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Monday 5/3/21
Monday's 10-game main slate features a pair of aces up top, and it will be hard to turn down the services of one in particular. For our bats, Coors Field stands out on an otherwise tough hitting slate. We also need to keep an eye on the weather in Colorado, and Philadelphia, Chicago, and St. Louis all have potential rain.
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Let's check out the top options on tonight's main slate.
Tyler Glasnow ($10,800): Coming in with a 2.50 SIERA, 39.2% strikeout rate, and 7.7% walk rate, Tyler Glasnow is pretty clearly the night's best pitching option. He already has FanDuel scores of 75 and 61 points under his belt, which is the type of ceiling others on the slate will have a difficult time matching. Although he's up against an Angels team that doesn't hand out free punchouts like some other teams, we're less concerned about matchups for someone like Glasnow. Tampa Bay hasn't been coddling their ace right-hander, either, as he's tallied at least 94 pitches in five straight starts, exceeding 100 twice.
Walker Buehler ($10,400): After posting modest strikeout numbers over his first three starts, Walker Buehler has notched 9 and 10 punchouts over his last two, giving us more confidence in his upside. He's now up to a 25.4% strikeout rate, and he's also only issued two walks all season (1.6% rate). The matchup checks out against the Cubs, a team with a 27.5% strikeout rate versus right-handed pitching dating back to last season. Note that this game is one of the trouble spots for weather, so Buehler could ultimately be out of play if things don't clear up.
Shohei Ohtani ($8,900): If we lose Buehler to the rain, finding the next best choice is tricky. Shohei Ohtani's sporting a fantastic 37.1% strikeout rate, but it's come with a 21.0% walk rate and blister issues, and he's now dealing with a sore elbow after getting plunked by a pitch yesterday. In theory, there's a path to a big game against the Rays (25.8% strikeout rate versus righties from 2020-21), but there's a whole lot that can go wrong here, too.
Others to Consider: Kenta Maeda ($6,900)
San Francisco Giants: As is always the case, the two Coors teams are in play with two of the highest implied totals on the board. However, Aaron Sanchez and German Marquez aren't total scrubs, with both hurlers showing high ground-ball rates, making them better equipped to handle Coors.
However, Marquez is really struggling with control (13.3% walk rate) and has a middling 4.57 SIERA, so I'm siding more with the Giants tonight, who are already seeing the Rockies righty for the third time this season.
San Francisco is even more appealing when you look at all the value in their lineup, as guys like Alex Dickerson ($3,000) and Brandon Belt ($3,100) have curiously low salaries for a Coors Field game, and recently acquired Mike Tauchman ($2,700) has hit second twice against right-handed starters. That means we could potentially get three guys in the top half of the order for an average salary under $3,000, which is kind of bonkers.
On the other hand, Buster Posey ($3,900) has a nutty salary on the other end of the spectrum, but he's enjoyed a bit of a resurgence at the plate, and the low salaries of his teammates can help you fit him in.
Los Angeles Dodgers: Once again, rain is the main sticking point in this Dodgers-Cubs matchup, but if they're trending towards playing when we're close to lock, then the Dodgers are in in a good spot against Kyle Hendricks.
There's a sizable gap between Hendricks' ERA (7.54) and SIERA (4.57), so perhaps there's some poor luck in play, but there's no question Hendricks hasn't been his usual self. He's already given up 10 home runs, which matches the number he gave up over 12 starts in 2020, and that's coincided with a significant drop in ground-ball rate (31.6%). His walks are also up to 7.4%, a number that normally wouldn't move the needle except it's out of character for someone who's been below 5% in each of the past two seasons.
For someone who's never held a high strikeout rate to begin with, these are some unsettling trends for Hendricks, and until we see him right the ship, he looks more like someone to attack than not.
Of course, it doesn't hurt when said stack is one of the best lineups in baseball, too. The salaries are appealing from the projected cleanup hitter on down between Max Muncy ($3,200), Will Smith ($3,000), Chris Taylor ($3,200), A.J. Pollock ($2,100), and Gavin Lux ($2,100).
San Diego Padres: Considering the other matchups and possible postponements, it gets pretty murky beyond Coors and the Dodgers, but a strong offense like the Padres are pretty much always on the radar.
Their matchup against left-hander Tyler Anderson isn't anything special, as Anderson's actually put up a solid 3.94 SIERA, 23.6% strikeout rate, and 7.3% walk rate so far. He's tough to get a read on after spending his first four seasons in Colorado, but he didn't perform particularly well in 2020 with the Giants (5.69 SIERA), so the hope here is that he's not as good as he's shown.
Fernando Tatis Jr. ($4,400), Manny Machado ($3,600), and Wil Myers ($2,700) will have the platoon advantage, and Anderson hasn't had notable lefty-lefty splits, so you could still opt for some lefty sticks, too.