FanDuel DFS MLB Picks | 5/21/18

We’re rolling right along on FD lately with a three-day winning streak, so let’s keep it going on this abbreviated Monday slate.  There are some top offenses to target, and FD makes it a bit easier on us with softer-than-usual pricing on the top SPs.  I will be in chat today helping all our FTA+ subs build the best possible lineups for both cash and GPP play, and you can follow me on twitter @jac3600.   STARTING PITCHER TOP PLAY Zack Greinke, ARI ($9200) Greinke gets the slight edge over Walker Buehler for me tonight simply given the fact that the expected innings are likely higher (Buehler has been effective in every start thus far but has only reached six innings twice).  The quality start aspect in highly in play here and FD elevated the scoring for that, and Greinke has offset all his hard contact allowed with a 26.6% K rate.  Milwaukee has drastically lowered its K rate against RHP this season from last, but the loss of Ryan Braun hurts the overall dynamic of the lineup (Jesus Aguilar is a big K bat).  The Brewers’ IRT is 3.9 which isn’t the best, but it’s usable. Other options – Walker Buehler, Gio Gonzalez   VALUE PLAY Jose Berrios, MIN ($8400) All three pitchers above are cash viable, but if you want to cheapen up even more Berrios is a good option (albeit a more risky one).  He was lights out last time (59 FD points) but was really off the three starts before (22 FD points COMBINED).  If his stuff is on, he’s one of the most untouchable pitchers in the game and the heavily right-handed Tigers present a really good matchup for his curveball.  They’re missing Miguel Cabrera and Jeimer Candelario and Berrios is a -205 favorite with a 3.5 IRTA.  He’s the best GPP option, and is cash viable. Other options – Masahiro Tanaka, Nick Pivetta, German Marquez, Chase Anderson   CATCHER/FIRST BASE TOP PLAY Freddie Freeman, ATL ($4900) I’m not really looking to spend top dollar on Freeman in cash tonight, but he’s an elite GPP option against Nick Pivetta.  The Phillies righty has really been excellent thus far this season, and his peripherals actually look like he’ll be better as the season progresses.  However, Pivetta has still allowed 1.69 HR/9 to LHB since the beginning of last year, and Freeman has a .406 wOBA and .277 ISO against RHP in that span.  He’ll likely be underowned with a full price tag and people leery of attacking Pivetta too much. Other options – Carlos Santana, Jose Abreu, Cody Bellinger, Paul Goldschmidt, Gary Sanchez, J.T. Realmuto   VALUE PLAY Wilmer Flores, NYM ($2300) Flores is usually someone we only target against LHP, but he’s been hitting third as of late against everyone which removes the PH risk (since Adrian Gonzalez has also been in the lineup).  It’s a small sample size, but Flores has been really good against RHP this year (.391 wOBA and .264 ISO) and he’s facing off against Elisier Hernandez who has only started one game above AA.  He’ll be backed by the Marlins bullpen that ranks 25th in xFIP, and Flores really helps you save money for some top option at other spots. Other options – Jesus Aguilar, Niko Goodrum, Neil Walker Catcher values – Yasmani Grandal, Welington Castillo, Mitch Garver   SECOND BASE TOP PLAY Brian Dozier, MIN ($3600) Dozier is a really nice play in all formats tonight, and frankly he’s underpriced as well.  He’ll start with the platoon edge against Blaine Hardy, and Dozier has a .366 wOBA and .224 ISO against LHP over the last four years.  After that, Dozier gets to take aim at the Tigers bullpen which is currently ranked dead last in both xFIP and ISO allowed.  The Twins have an IRT of five runs, and their ballpark inflates right-handed power. Other options – Ozzie Albies, Yoan Moncada, Asdrubal Cabrera   VALUE PLAY Jonathan Schoop, BAL ($3200) As good an option as Dozier seems to be, I have no problem if you want to save a few hundred more on Schoop.  He’ll have the platoon edge against Hector Santiago who has allowed 1.61 HR/9 to RHB since 2014, and Schoop made huge strides in the power department last year with a .397 wOBA and .293 ISO against LHP.  It’s a bit cooler in Chicago, but the Orioles are also coming into tonight with an IRT of five runs, and Schoop bats cleanup. Other options – Jonathan Villar, Rougned Odor, Kolten Wong, Ketel Marte   THIRD BASE TOP PLAY Anthony Rendon, WAS ($3800) Rendon takes the top spot tonight with no Bryant or Donaldson to challenge him, and he’s been incredible against LHP over the past two years (.390 wOBA, .226 ISO).  He’s facing off against Robbie Erlin who has given up a .372 wOBA and a .200 ISO to RHB in the last two years, and the Padres bullpen is really weak outside of Brad Hand.  Rendon is playable in all formats. Other options – Justin Turner, Travis Shaw, Matt Davidson   VALUE PLAY Matt Carpenter, STL ($3300) Carpenter has popped back in the two-hole with Paul DeJong on the DL, and is looks like he’s finally turned it around after a brutal start to the year.  Carpenter has eight hits (four of them doubles) over his last four games to go along with a 44% hard hit rate, and he’s facing off against Ina Kennedy who has allowed a .205 ISO to LHB over the last two years.  The Cardinals are a great stack for GPPs, and Carpenter is my favorite individual play for cash. Other options – Danny Valencia, Jake Lamb, Yolmer Sanchez, Miguel Andujar   SHORTSTOP TOP PLAY Manny Machado, BAL ($4900) Giancarlo Stanton will be my one big spend (if I’m only able to get to one), but Machado comes in at a solid second for me.  He gets the same matchup highlighted in Schoop’s blurb, and Machado should get five plate appearance on the road against a very below-average pitching staff.  He’s performing like an MVP in his contract year, with a .442 wOBA, a .309 ISO, and a 182 wRC+.  He’s worth the money tonight. Other options – Trea Turner, Didi Gregorius, Chris Taylor   VALUE PLAY Jedd Gyorko, STL ($2700) If you’re looking to save at the SS position tonight, Gyorko looks like the best option.  He’s been hitting fifth lately with so many of the Cards’ regulars on the DL, and Gyorko has been one of the better reverse split hitter in the game recently with a .363 wOBA and .216 ISO against RHP over the last two years.  Attacking the HR-prone Ian Kennedy is a smart move, as he doesn’t really discriminate which hand the power comes from. Other options – Jurickson Profar, Miguel Rojas, Amed Rosario, Scott Kingery   OUTFIELD TOP PLAY Giancarlo Stanton, NYY ($5100) We haven’t really touched on the Yankees in this article, but they’re the top offense tonight by a long shot, and you’ll want at least one piece in your cash lineups.  The almost 45-year old Bartolo Colon has been a nice story this year, but he’s vastly outpitching his peripherals (2.82 ERA, 4.47 FIP) and he’s allowed 1.59 HR/9 while striking out under six batters per nine innings.  If you’re not striking out these Yankee batters, you’re in big trouble, and they come in with the highest IRT by far at 5.6 runs.  Stanton is a known lefty-killer, but his .261 ISO against RHP over the last two years in nothing to sneeze at, and you can easily afford him with no pitchers over 10k. Other options – Aaron Judge, Tommy Pham, Ronald Acuna, Rhys Hoskins, Bryce Harper, Charlie Blackmon, Christian Yelich   VALUE PLAY Brett Gardner, NYY ($2800) A Stanton/Gardner pairing in cash looks like an incredibly smart way to go, as you’ll get exposure to two bats in the top four against Colon.  Gardner will lead off on the road (five PAs almost guaranteed), and Colon has allowed almost a 40% hard hit rate to LHB over the last three years.  The prospect of multiple runs scored is great for Gardner, and FD amplifies the run scoring aspect more than DK.  He’s a lock for me as his hard hit rate has crept back up in the month of May. Other options – Aaron Hicks, Trey Mancini, Adam Jones, Mark Trumbo, Dexter Fowler, Marcell Ozuna, David Peralta, Steven Souza, Michael Conforto, Jay Bruce, Brandon Nimmo, Joey Gallo, Shin Soo Choo, Nomar Mazara, David Dahl, Byron Buxton, Cameron Maybin, Lewis Brinson Fantasy Baseball

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