DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 4/4/18
Every day is unique for daily fantasy baseball, which is both a blessing and a challenge. Although we can’t simply plug and play our favorite studs day in and day out, each slate presents us with a chance for a new gem to vault us up the leaderboards.
Through the use of numberFire’s tools, we can better identify the players primed to succeed each day, making the process of filling out a lineup just that much easier. 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.
Which names stand out for today on the DraftKings main slate? Let’s check it out, starting with the pitchers.
Pitchers to Target
Carlos Martinez ($10,200 on DraftKings): Carlos Martinez is the most expensive pitcher on this short, five-game slate. He does not have the easiest matchup as he takes on a Milwaukee Brewers team that loaded up in the off-season. However, Martinez had a 25.3 percent strikeout rate in 2017, which is the highest on the slate and also had the second lowest skill-interactive earned run average (SIERA) at 3.85.
Jon Gray ($8,500): Jon Gray stands out with Martinez as the two top pitchers on this slate for me. The Colorado Rockies are on the road to take on the San Diego Padres in Petco Park, which has a park factor of .838, which is the lowest in the Majors, meaning it is the best for pitchers. Furthermore, Gray has the second-best strikeout rate on the slate at 24.3 percent and a slate-best 3.74 SIERA.
Jhoulys Chacin ($6,200): Targeting the St. Louis Cardinals did not work yesterday, but on tonight's short slate, we need to dig a bit deeper. Chacin got crushed in his first start this season, but he was decent last year. In 2017, he induced weak contact as indicated by his average exit velocity of 85.4 miles per hour, which is second best on the slate. His strikeout rate isn't the best at just 20 percent, but for his price, you are just looking for him to "not suck."
Hitters to Target
Nolan Arenado ($5,000): Nolan Arenado absolutely smashed left-handed pitching last season. in 165 plate appearances against southpaws, Arenado crushed the ball to the tune of a .534 weighted on base average (wOBA) and a .420 isolated power (ISO). Tonight, he is taking on pitcher Clayton Richard, who allowed a slate-worst 35 percent hard-contact rate last season. This is a great combination for Arenado, who doesn't even need that extra boost to be successful.
Josh Donaldson ($4,600): Despite being talked about for having a "dead arm" in the field, Josh Donaldson has hit home runs in back-to-back games. Although he was better against left-handed pitching last season, he was no slouch against right-handers, either, with a .389 wOBA and a .261 ISO. Tonight, he is taking on Carson Fulmer, who, in limited innings, was terrible last season. He had a horrific 54.5 percent fly-ball rate, and although his home run to fly ball rate (HR/FB) was just 11 percent, if he continues to get hit in the air like that, it will mean only more trouble.
Khris Davis ($4,700): Khris Davis was a bit of a reverse-splits hitter last season, meaning as a right-handed batter, he hit right-handed pitching better than left. Against righties, he put up a .369 wOBA and a .293 ISO, and against lefties, it was just a .333 wOBA and .238 ISO. He also hit surprisingly well at his home park -- which is known for being a pitcher's park -- with 26 of his 43 home runs coming at home.
Mitch Haniger ($3,500): Again, because this is a short slate, it is tough to get a bunch of players in perfect matchups. Haniger hit right-handed pitching well last season with a .375 wOBA and a .213 ISO. However, taking on Cueto, who was magnificent in his first start, is never ideal. Cueto did have some numbers in 2017 that are worth noting from an opposing hitter's standpoint, though. He allowed a 184-foot average distance on batted balls, which is third worst on the slate. He also allowed a slate-worst 24.8 percent line-drive rate, which is great for hitters because line drives are the most likely batted ball to end up as a hit.
Brandon Belt ($3,300): Belt is the best hitter on the San Francisco Giants against right-handed pitchers. Tonight, the Giants are home to face the Seattle Mariners, who will have Felix Hernandez on the mound. Felix is long removed from his 2010 Cy Young winning season and is now a pitcher worth targeting in certain spots. Belt hit righties in 2017 to the tune of a .372 wOBA and .254 ISO, and although the Giants have struggled considerably this season, Belt is in a good spot at a cheap price.
Adrian Beltre ($3,300): You may see Beltre's name mentioned here a decent amount as long as he's as cheap as he is and in favorable matchups. Beltre smashed southpaws last season with a .464 wOBA and a .254 ISO, and tonight he is taking on lefty Sean Manaea. Manaea allowed a slate-worst average exit velocity of 88.8 miles per hour in 2017. Beltre has struggled in the early part of the season, but with just six games under his belt, the sample size is much too small to assume that this veteran has hit a wall.
Ryan Sheppard is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Ryan Sheppard also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username donkshow_. 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.