4 Daily Fantasy Baseball Value Plays for Friday 6/18/21
With production being highly variable on a night-to-night basis, daily fantasy baseball plays a bit differently than other sports.
An 0-for-4 dud from a chalky high-salaried slugger is a lot more common than a total dud from a top-salaried NBA player or even than a stinker from a top quarterback or running back.
That means that it's not uncommon for value plays to end up doing the heavy lifting in carrying your lineup. The fact that they can be the difference between a good and a great lineup isn't much different than other sports, but value plays being able to make up for a whiff on a high-salaried play completely is somewhat unique.
Let's get right into it and take a look at the top value options on today's eight-game main slate.
Alex Cobb, SP, Angels ($7,500)
A 3.12 SIERA, 28.0% strikeout rate, 7.5% walk rate, and 12.0% swinging-strike rate -- those are Alex Cobb's season-long numbers, and he's just $7,500. And on top of that, he gets a dream date with the Detroit Tigers, who own the highest strikeout rate (27.6%) and the seventh-worst wOBA (.297). Detroit has an attackable 3.80 implied total today.
So, what's the catch?
There really isn't one. Cobb's workload is fine -- 98 and 101 pitches in two of his last three outings -- and he's put up at least 30.0 FanDuel points in four of his past five starts.
While Cobb doesn't have the strikeout upside of some of the slate's high-end arms -- specifically Trevor Bauer, Robbie Ray, and Corbin Burnes -- the Los Angeles Angels' righty is a really solid point-per-dollar play, and his salary is very handy on a Coors slate.
Mike Brosseau, 2B/3B, Rays ($2,300)
Versus southpaws in 2020, Brosseau mashed his way to a .455 wOBA, 62.1% hard-hit rate, 51.7% fly-ball rate, and four homers in a small sample of 47 plate appearances. For his career, Brosseau has posted a .349 wOBA, 40.9% hard-hit rate and 44.5% fly-ball rate in the split.
Kikuchi was good in 2020 and has upped it to another level so far this year, but his career strikeout rate against righties is only 19.4%.
Brosseau should be in a good spot in the lineup, and our projections rate him as one of the best point-per-dollar bats on the slate.
Lourdes Gurriel, OF, Jays ($2,500)
Zimmermann should be in a world of hurt today against a Toronto Blue Jays lineup that carries a 5.59 implied total, the second-highest of the slate. The Jays will likely be very righty-heavy, and right-handed hitters have a .354 wOBA against Zimmerman this year.
As a low-salary piece of a Jays lineup that will be a go-to stacking option, Gurriel isn't going to fly under the radar. But with a 39.2% hard-hit rate against lefties this season in addition to a .356 wOBA in the split for his career, Gurriel looks like chalk worth swallowing in this spot.
A.J. Pollock, OF, Dodgers ($2,500)
The Los Angeles Dodgers are another team on the stacking wishlist as they hold a 5.37 implied total versus southpaw Caleb Smith. Our model has LA plating a whopping 6.28 runs in this one, so you're going to want some exposure to the Dodgers.
A.J. Pollock is an economical way to get in on the fun.
Against left-handers last season, Pollock recorded a .468 wOBA and 56.3% hard-hit rate in a small sample of 60 plate appearances. He was red-hot this past May, finishing the month with a .442 wOBA, and Pollock has a .357 wOBA against lefties over his lengthy career.
Smith has given up a 50.0% fly-ball rate to righties this season, so Pollock is capable of doing some damage tonight.