FanDuel DFS MLB Picks | 5/22/18

DK was a huge success last night but FD left something to be desired (my four-game winning streak ended).  I’d like to get a win all around the industry tonight, and we have a nice 15-game slate with which to do it.  You’re immediately presented with a decision between Cole and Sale who lap the field as far as floor and ceiling go, and you’ll need to find some nice hitting values.  I will be rocking with our FTA+ peeps in chat, and you can follow me on twitter @jac3600.   STARTING PITCHER TOP PLAY Chris Sale, BOS ($11,500) You can’t really go wrong with Sale or Cole, and they both project very similarly tonight.  I’ll happily take the $300 discount on Sale, however, and also the fact that Sale has been “doing it longer” than Cole (the Houston righty is well above his career numbers).  Tampa Bay is sixth in wRC+ against LHP but is 27th in overall ISO.  Sale’s velocity has been trending way upwards lately and he’s once again flashing an incredible 35% K rate this year.  I’d strongly recommend building around one of these two in cash, and the cheaper Sale is my lean. Other options – Gerrit Cole, Trevor Bauer   VALUE PLAY Kevin Gausman, BAL ($8300) Has Gausman finally turned the corner?? He could still be prone to blowups due to an elevated HR/FB rate, but he has an elite matchup against the White Sox who have the sixth highest K rate against RHP and rank 16th in wRC+ against them.  He’ll get the benefit of a cooler pitching environment in Chicago, and he has one of the most favorable home plate umpires in the game.  I think you have to pony up the dough for cash, but Gausman currently sits as my favorite GPP option with a middling price tag that will carry very low ownership. Other options – Garrett Richards, Vince Velasquez, Caleb Smith, Zack Wheeler, Luke Weaver, Lance Lynn, James Shields, Brock Stewart   CATCHER/FIRST BASE TOP PLAY Freddie Freeman, ATL ($4900) You don’t need Freeman in cash, but you could argue he’s the best overall player on the slate against Vince Velasquez who has allowed a .361 wOBA and .209 ISO to LHB over the past two years.  Freeman has massacred RHP over his entire career and is having another magical season with a .415 wOBA and .237 ISO.  He’s an elite GPP option. Other options – Anthony Rizzo, Joey Votto, Paul Goldschmidt, Cody Bellinger, Gary Sanchez   VALUE PLAY Josh Bell, PIT ($3200) I’m a huge fan of the Pirates offense today, who get a huge park upgrade going to Cincinnati and come in with an IRT of 5.1 runs.  They’re facing off against Matt Harvey who has allowed a .395 wOBA and 1.78 HR/9 to LHB over the past two years, and Bell has a 30% hard hit rate over his last 15 games.  He’s a great value for the balance he offers this evening. Other options – Matt Olson, Albert Pujols, Wilmer Flores, Chris Davis, Neil Walker Catcher values – Francisco Cervelli, Evan Gattis, Victor Martinez, Mitch Garver   SECOND BASE TOP PLAY Brian Dozier, MIN ($3700) Dozier may possibly be my favorite overall play tonight, and his price tag does not reflect what he could give you.  He has an elite .404 wOBA and .296 ISO against LHP over the past two seasons, and is facing Matt Boyd who has allowed a .229 ISO to RHB in that span.  The Twins have an IRT of five runs, and Boyd is backed by the weakest bullpen in baseball.  There’s all kinds of upside here. Other options – Ozzie Albies, Jose Altuve, Yoan Moncada   VALUE PLAY Josh Harrison, PIT ($2900) You want access to the Pirates tonight, and Harrison is a nice cheap way to get it even if he lacks the platoon edge.  He should lead off for the Pirates which almost guarantees five PAs, and he’ll do it in Great American Ballpark against a shoddy pitching staff outside of Raisel Iglesias.  Harrison’s hit rate is low since returning from the DL, but he walks and steals bases, and has a good chance of scoring runs (which FD’s scoring system amplifies). Other options – Dee Gordon, Jonathan Schoop, Jonathan Villar, Rougned Odor   THIRD BASE TOP PLAY Anthony Rendon, WAS ($3800) Rendon checks in as the top 3B for the second straight day (and this time he has a full slate of competition).  Rendon has a .388 wOBA and .227 ISO against LHP over the past two seasons and is facing Eric Lauer who has been simply awful in the majors.  Lauer has a 6.07 FIP, has walked almost five batters per nine innings, and has allowed 2.14 HR/9 in his brief stint in the bigs, and Washington has an IRT of five runs as well (which I honestly think seems low after they blasted the Padres yesterday).  He’s playable in all formats. Other options – Josh Donaldson, Alex Bregman, Travis Shaw   VALUE PLAY Jake Lamb, ARI ($2900) I really like Matt Carpenter again, but there’s really no sense in fading Lamb at this price tag.  He has a .374 wOBA and .266 ISO against RHP over the last two seasons and is facing Jhoulys Chacin who has been battered by LHB in his career.  Over the last two years, he’s allowed 1.50 HR/9 to lefties, and Lamb is now batting third for the D’Backs. Other options – Zack Cozart, Colin Moran, Pedro Alvarez   SHORTSTOP TOP PLAY Manny Machado, BAL ($4900) James Shields has annoyingly flashed some indications that he remembers how to pitch this year, but I’m not deterred from attacking him from all sides.  Shields has allowed a .231 ISO to same-handed hitters over the last two years, and still has a brutal 5/4 BB/K ratio this season.  Machado is an elite bat with a 38% hard hit rate over the last ten games. Other options – Trea Turner, Didi Gregorius, Carlos Correa   VALUE PLAY Jedd Gyorko, STL ($2600) I stated yesterday that Gyorko has been hitting fifth against righties, and of course the Cardinals proved me a liar by putting him in the sixth spot.  Tyler O’Neill hit fifth and flourished, so I imagine St. Louis will go back to the same formula tonight.  However, hitting sixth doesn’t restrict you from the value Gyorko offers, as he has a .236 ISO against same-handed pitching over the last two years.  Jason Hammel has struck out less than five batters per nine innings, and has a 5.27 xFIP.  St. Louis has one of the highest IRTs at 5.1 runs. Other options – Marcus Semien, Jurickson Profar, Jose Peraza   OUTFIELD TOP PLAY Giancarlo Stanton, NYY ($5100) It’s a Stanton against a lefty day, and even though Cole Hamels has brought himself back from last year’s disaster season he’s still allowed 1.57 HR/9 this year with a 4.08 xFIP.  Facing these Yankee righties in the extreme heat of Texas is no picnic, and Stanton’s numbers against lefties are insane (.459 wOBA, .405 ISO the last two years).  If you can fit in one big bat alongside Sale or Cole, Stanton is your man, but it’ll be tough. Other options – Aaron Judge, Mike Trout, Mookie Betts, JD Martinez, Bryce Harper, Tommy Pham, Rhys Hoskins, George Springer, Christian Yelich, Corey Dickerson (birthday narrative!), Gregory Polanco, Justin Upton, Nelson Cruz   VALUE PLAY Marcell Ozuna/Tyler O’Neill, STL ($2500/$2500) Cheap Cardinals are great tonight against Jason Hammel and his ZiPS projected 1.54 HR/9.  Ozuna has been slow to get going with St. Louis this year, but he’s an elite bat, and Tyler O’Neill brings a nice combo of power and speed.  They’re almost free squares on a slate you need value, and I wouldn’t be opposed to both in cash. Other options – Aaron Hicks, Joey Gallo, Shin Shoo Choo, Nomar Mazara, Delino DeShields, David Peralta, Joc Pederson, Adam Jones, Trey Mancini, Mark Trumbo, Lorenzo Cain, Domingo Santana, Jesse Winker, Aaron Altherr, Steven Souza Fantasy Baseball

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