MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Saturday 10/8/16
The beauty of daily fantasy baseball is that the top targets are different each and every day. Whether it's the right-handed catcher who destroys left-handed pitching or the mid-range hurler facing a depleted lineup, you're not going to find yourself using the same assets time after time.
While this breaks up the monotony, it can make it hard to decide which players are primed to succeed on a given day. We can help bridge that gap.
In addition to our custom optimal lineups, you can check out our batting and pitching heat maps, which show the pieces in the best spot to succeed on that slate. Put on the finishing touches with our games and lineups page to see who's hitting where and what the weather looks like, and you'll have yourself a snazzy looking team to put up some big point totals.
If you need help getting started on that trek, here are some of the top options on the board today.
Pitchers to Target
Rich Hill ($9,000 on FanDuel): The Washington Nationals can bang left-handed pitching, and there's rain in the forecast, but Rich Hill may be worth the risk. In the six starts he made after his blister issue, Hill had a killer 2.87 SIERA, 30.5% strikeout rate, and 3.9% walk rate. The Nationals' two best hitters in Bryce Harper and Daniel Murphy both swing from the left-hand side of the dish, and Hill could be primed to continue his hot streak today.
Kyle Hendricks ($9,500): Here's a handy dandy flow chart to help you decide when to use Kyle Hendricks. First, are the Chicago Cubs at home? If you've answered "yes" to this on a day when Hendricks is pitching, you should use Hendricks. His strikeout rate at Wrigley Field spiked to 24.6% with just a 3.9% walk rate, helping him record a 1.32 ERA. The San Francisco Giants don't strikeout often, but we'll take a dent in the ceiling based on the hefty floor that Hendricks provides.
Hitters to Target
Corey Seager ($3,700): Tanner Roark is a bit of an odd choice to start Game 2 for the Nationals given his 4.80 SIERA the second half of the season, but it opens up opportunities for Corey Seager and his ball-bashing ways. Seager had just 9 of his 26 home runs in the second half of the season, but we can chalk that up to randomness when we see that he had a 40.2% hard-hit rate and 13.2% soft-hit rate after the All-Star break. Seager showed what he can do against Max Scherzer yesterday, but when you've got talent like his, monster dingers aren't a fluke.
Kris Bryant ($3,900): Even though Jeff Samardzija has a slightly higher strikeout rate against right-handed batters, the 33.8% hard-hit rate he also allows to them is hard to pass up. Facing a same-handed pitcher didn't bother Kris Bryant this year as he finished the regular season with a 40.2% hard-hit rate and 44.4% fly-ball rate while facing them. Bryant's the type of hitter we want to target on small slates because of his constant upside regardless of whom he's facing.
Adrian Gonzalez ($2,900): A lot of the same logic for endorsing Corey Seager also applies to the team's clean-up hitter, Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzalez's power stroke really kicked up a notch after the All-Star break when he posted a 37.1% hard-hit rate over the rest of the season. Roark's ability to limit hard contact slips a bit when a lefty's at the dish, meaning focusing our ownership on the Los Angeles Dodgers hitters swinging from that side of the dish should be most fruitful.
Jason Heyward ($2,800): Obviously, Jason Heyward had a rough first season with the Cubs, and his batted-ball stats won't knock your socks off. However, his situation is conducive to DFS usage, and we can't simply ignore that. Heyward will likely bat sixth in a lineup that's filled with dudes who can flood the basepaths, meaning he'll have chances to drive in runs. Additionally, Heyward became a bit more fly-ball friendly down the stretch with a 37.0% fly-ball rate in the second half as opposed to 30.4% in the first. If you're not using Seager, then Addison Russell and Javier Baez are other low-cost ways to get exposure to this lineup.
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