3 Under-the-Radar MLB FanDuel Plays for Tuesday 5/11/21
When being contrarian in daily fantasy sports, there's a fine line between taking a calculated risk and being reckless. But differentiating your lineups from everyone else's is the name of the game if you plan on taking down one of those highly lucrative DFS tournaments. Whether it's because of bookmaker totals, other options at a given position, or some gem you've found that everyone is overlooking, we can always find potential under-rostered plays if we look hard enough.
Here are three such players to consider branching out for on FanDuel's main slate.
Brady Singer, P, Kansas City Royals ($7,800)
While there are plenty of strong pitchers on this slate, saving some salary will allow you to pay up for the hitters at Coors Field.
Finding a pitcher at a lower rostership percentage can be somewhat easy on a large 12-game slate, but finding one with some upside is the real key. That's where Brady Singer comes into play because he has a very favorable matchup versus the Detroit Tigers tonight. So far this season, the Tigers have a 28.0% strikeout rate (2nd worst in the league), a .162 ISO (13th), an 88 wRC+ (23rd), a 33.5% fly-ball rate (23rd), and 29.8% hard-hit rate (28th) against righties. Surprise, surprise. The Tigers aren't a strong offensive team, and you should attack them with pitchers.
Singer comes into this game with limited experience at the Major League level but in that time, he has a 23.6% strikeout rate, a massive 52.1% ground-ball rate, and only a 30.4% hard-contact rate. Singer truly shouldn't have an issue with the Tigers' lineup, and with the savings he brings to your lineup, it will allow you to pay up for the Coors Field hitters.
Matt Olson, 1B, Oakland Athletics ($3,200)
With a 4.02 implied run total, the Athletics sit as the 12th highest team on the slate, clearly putting them in no man's land. They're not a top offense and not one near the bottom -- just very average tonight.
And guess what? That's fine since we are looking for options that could go under the radar. Admittedly, Eovaldi is off to a strong start this season, limiting hard contact, maintaining a super-low (4.8%) walk rate, and providing plenty of fantasy consistency. However, Eovaldi has yet to give up a single home run this season, which is a big departure from the 1.51 HR/9 he has allowed since the start of the 2018 season.
Regardless of how good Eovaldi is this season, he's bound to give up some home runs, and I'm banking on that happening tonight. This is where you can look to roster Matt Olson, who's been scorching the ball this season versus righties. He comes in with a .238 ISO, a 169 wRC+, a 38.5% hard-contact rate, and a 35.3% fly-ball rate.
Considering this is a big-time positive park shift for the Athletics, they are in a good spot to get some power going versus Eovaldi.
Nolan Arenado, 3B, St. Louis Cardinals ($3,600)
The St. Louis Cardinals have a 3.30 implied run total tonight, which is the 22nd highest on the slate.
Yes, you read that correctly. The 22nd highest implied run total on tonight's slate means the Cardinals shouldn't be popular in any capacity, which is great four tournaments.
I find this a bit surprising for a few reasons. One of which is the fact they are on the road in Milwaukee, which is a solid hitter's park. Next, they are up against Freddy Peralta, who can certainly shut hitters down with a career 33.3% strikeout rate versus right-handed hitters. However, the one thing we know about Peralta is that he can get hit very hard if the strikeouts aren't there. Peralta has allowed 1.30 HR/9, a 47.8% fly-ball rate, and a 38.6% hard-contact rate in his career versus righties.
We have a home-run-prone pitcher in a hitter's ballpark against a team that shouldn't be popular in tournaments. This sets up a hitter such as Nolan Arenado to be a very interesting tournament option due to his power upside. Arenado's power numbers this season are nearly identical to his career numbers, as he's been one of the most consistent hitters in baseball over the past several years. Those numbers in his career are a .235 ISO, a 42.0% fly-ball rate, and a 36.7% hard-contact rate, giving him plenty of home run upside.