FanDuel Pitching Primer: Friday 7/30/21

In daily fantasy baseball, success starts with nailing the starting pitcher spot in your lineup.

When compared to hitters, pitching performance tends to be much more predictable and stable throughout the course of the season. You know what you're getting from a top-level ace when you roster him: probably a dominant effort with only one or two implosions per season. In contrast, even the game's best hitters have days at the plate when they go 0-for-4.

As a result, lineup construction should begin with the starting pitcher. Which pitchers should you consider on today's main slate?

High-Salaried Play

Lance Lynn, Chicago White Sox

Vs. Cleveland Indians
FanDuel Salary: $10,700

Our projections show that there are three stud arms worth considering on a chock-full 15-game main slate on Friday -- Corbin Burnes ($11,200), Kevin Gausman ($10,200), and Lance Lynn. I lean toward Lynn as the slate's top hurler.


Quite frankly, it's the matchups for Gausman and Burnes that scare me away. While the Atlanta Braves, Burnes's opponent, are missing superstar Ronald Acuna, it's still an offense that has been cookin' at the dish and ranks 11th in team in wOBA. Gausman is in the mix for the NL Cy Young award, but he faces a Houston Astros team that's the hardest to strike out in the league.

Now peep Lynn -- he takes on a Cleveland Indians offense that ranks 26th in wOBA, and they sport a tolerable 23.4% team strikeout rate on the season. And the punchout numbers are there for Lynn, who has logged a 27.4% strikeout rate in 2021.

Lynn is a great play tonight.

Mid-Salaried Play

Logan Gilbert, Seattle Mariners

At Texas Rangers
FanDuel Salary: $8,800

It's no secret that any prospect -- no matter how highly ranked -- can struggle when they get up to The Show. And that's exactly what happened to top prospect Logan Gilbert of the Seattle Mariners.

But this dude has been rolling lately. In the last month (20 2/3 innings pitched), the young righty has whiffed 28 batters and recorded a sparkling 3.05 ERA and 0.97 WHIP.

And his matchup tonight? It's a great one versus the Texas Rangers. Over the last week, the Rangers' .215 wOBA is far and away the worst mark in the league, and Joey Gallo is now a member of the New York Yankees.

Gimme all the Gilbert in the mid-range.

Low-Salaried Play

Tony Gonsolin, Los Angeles Dodgers

At Arizona Diamondbacks
FanDuel Salary: $7,300

In terms of bad offenses, the Arizona Diamondbacks are up there among the league's worst. Over the last seven days, the Snakes check in fifth-worst in wOBA (.293) and eighth-worst in ISO (.159).

That makes the modest-salaried Tony Gonsolin a passable option if you're trying to load up on some of the slate's juicy bats. The right-hander owns a 27.9% strikeout rate on the season, so he can get strikeouts.

Gonsolin's bugaboos are his 14.3% walk rate and short leash, which has seen him post a season-high pitch count of only 83. But if he can keep it in the zone tonight, he could plow through this blah Arizona offense.

Matt Kupferle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Matt Kupferle also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username MKupferle. 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.