FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 6/7/23
We have a fairly large 10-game main slate, but between the matchups, weather, and overall talent, there isn't necessarily an obvious answer at pitcher tonight. On the other hand, there are quite a few inviting spots for stacks, including the always-enticing Coors Field.
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Let's check out the top options on today's main slate.
Corbin Burnes ($10,000) hasn't been anything close to peak form in 2023, but we may need to take a leap of faith tonight.
While Burnes has skated by with respectable results, his 4.44 SIERA would be easily a career-worst if the season ended today. He's also taken significant steps back in strikeout rate (22.8%), walk rate (9.7%), and ground-ball rate (41.4%) compared to what we've seen over the past few years.
But if we're looking for signs of encouragement, Burnes has logged seven or more Ks in four of his last five starts, good for a 26.6% strikeout rate over that span. It's come with a 10.9% walk rate and more home runs than we'd like off a 49.4% fly-ball rate, but punchouts are the lifeblood for pitchers in DFS. It's something, at least. He's also gone 100 or more pitches in two straight starts for the first time all year.
The matchup is a neutral one against Baltimore, but it looks like Burnes is getting the benefit of the doubt, as the Orioles have a modest 3.74 implied team total. Even in his reduced state, the former Cy Young winner has reached 40 or more FanDuel points four times this season, and a score in the high 40s might be enough on a shaky pitching slate.
Max Scherzer ($9,600) is sort of in a similar boat as Burnes as someone who's fallen short of expectations, but after back-to-back FanDuel scores of 50-plus points, it's easier to have confidence in him returning to his prior form.
Since taking a little time to recover from some injury issues, Scherzer has produced a 3.42 xFIP, 29.8% strikeout rate, and 4.3% walk rate over his last four starts, which looks a whole lot more like the old Scherzer. Like Burnes, he's also cracked 100 pitches over his last two, so we can feel good about his workload.
But the reason it's harder to go all-in on Scherzer tonight is that he's up against a dangerous Braves lineup, and it won't help that high winds and temperatures should benefit hitters at Truist Park. Atlanta's implied team total is way up at 4.93, further demonstrating the risk here.
Still, in terms of upside, I'm not sure there's a better player on the board than Scherzer, and he might be my favorite choice for tournaments.
Considering how well he's pitched this season, I'll give Logan Webb ($11,000) a quick mention, but there might be too many factors going against him to roster him. Not only does he have the slate's highest salary, but he's at Coors Field and there's a chance of thunderstorms. Given all that, it's tough to get behind Webb despite the small list of viable alternatives.
Of this trio, Lynn could be the most popular option. He's up against the Yankees, which obviously isn't amazing, but the absence of Aaron Judge (toe) makes this much easier to stomach. He's coming off a disastrous start against the Angels and has been up and down all year, but his 4.04 SIERA, 25.1% strikeout rate, and 8.6% walk rate aren't far off from his career averages. Lynn's workload may very well be his best asset as he's a strong bet to throw triple-digit pitches on any given night.
Bibee is off to a solid start to his MLB career, which includes a 25.2% strikeout rate and 6.3% walk rate over seven starts. However, he gives up a lot of fly balls and has a 4.57 xFIP versus left-handed batters, which could prove troublesome versus the Red Sox. The good news is that we could be seeing 12 MPH winds blowing in at Progressive Field, and Boston has one of the lowest implied team totals (3.54).
Barria is a straight-up punt at what is the fourth-lowest salary at the position. After coming out of the bullpen all season, the right-hander recently joined the rotation and got up to 90 pitches in his most recent start. His 27.3% strikeout rate and 14.3% swinging-strike rate in that outing are a good sign that his season-long 25.0% strikeout rate could carry over as a starter -- but he also has a career 18.6% strikeout rate. The Cubs' active roster has a 25.1% strikeout rate versus righties this year, though, making Barria worth considering.
The Giants scored 10 runs last night and will look to duplicate that effort against Connor Seabold. Considering Seabold has a 4.94 SIERA, 16.6% strikeout rate, and 36.2% ground-ball rate, we shouldn't be shocked if they score double-digit runs again.
After dealing with several injuries lately, San Francisco has all their key players healthy again, giving us solid power up and down the lineup. Joc Pederson ($3,500) leads the team with a .253 ISO, and while he and other lefties could be pinch-hit risks, that probably shouldn't deter us from rostering them in such a plum spot.
The Dodgers had a big night at the plate yesterday, as well, and they also have a great chance of an encore effort. Over four starts, left-hander Brandon Williamson has an unsightly 5.33 xFIP, 19.5% strikeout rate, and 13.0% walk rate versus right-handed batters, and all three home runs he's allowed have come to righties.
We have ideal hitting weather in Cincinnati, which will only further boost the Dodgers' bats. Their services will cost a pretty penny, but Mookie Betts ($4,000), Will Smith ($3,900), and a resurgent J.D. Martinez ($4,000) top the wishlist of righties, and Chris Taylor ($2,700) and Miguel Vargas ($2,800) are possible value plays.
While it's a limited sample size, Blanco has a 5.41 xFIP, 12.2% walk rate, and 22.6% ground-ball rate versus righty sticks this season, which doesn't bode well for him against a lineup featuring Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ($3,600), Bo Bichette ($3,500), and Matt Chapman ($3,200). He isn't anything special against lefties (4.53 xFIP), too, so we can also opt for value from Brandon Belt ($2,600) and Daulton Varsho ($2,900).
The Los Angeles Angels, Arizona Diamondbacks, and Cincinnati Reds are other top options. Jameson Taillon is facing the Angels, and he's been horrific versus lefties (6.04 xFIP). You need little explanation as to why the D-backs' right-handed batters are in a great spot versus southpaw Patrick Corbin. Noah Syndergaard can't strike anyone out anymore (15.3% K rate), setting the Reds up for another offensive explosion.