DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 5/16/18

Chris Sale stands out among the aces on tonight's slate. Which cheap bats can you use to offset Sale's price on DraftKings?

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

High-Priced Pitchers

Chris Sale ($11,800 on DraftKings): This is a weird slate as there are only five games, but we have three high-priced stud pitchers. Chris Sale stands out as the Boston Red Sox are -260 favorites in taking on the Oakland Athletics, who have a slate-low 3.12 implied run total. Sale was a beast in 2017 with an elite 36.2 strikeout rate, a 5.1 walk-rate and a 2.58 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA), all of which are the best on the slate. And the A's 23 percent strikeout rate against left-handed pitching makes the matchup that much juicier.

Low-Priced Pitcher

Walker Buehler ($8,500): Walker Buehler has yet to go more than 6 innings or throw 100 pitches, but he has still had solid outings, getting more than 17 DraftKings points in each of his starts. He has a 31.4 percent strikeout rate and a 2.95 SIERA, both of which are elite numbers. He's going to take on a Miami Marlins team that sits dead last in the Majors with a .283 team weighted on-base average (wOBA) and in the middle of the pack (15th) with a 23.1 strikeout rate.

Hitters to Target

High-Priced Hitters

Mookie Betts ($5,700): Mookie Betts has bounced back in a big way in 2018. Although looking at splits from this season are not ideal, he still has 123 plate appearances against right-handed pitching this season and in those he has dominated. He has put up an elite .446 wOBA and a .330 isolated power (ISO), and he has a matchup against a surprisingly successful Trevor Cahill. However, Cahill's numbers were a terrible 4.93 ERA and he gave up 1.71 home runs per nine innings (HR/9).

Mike Trout ($4,900): It's a weird time when Mike Trout is the seventh-most expensive hitter on the slate. He's taking on Justin Verlander of the Houston Astros, an elite pitcher that does have some flaws. Despite his elite strikeout ability, Verlander gave up a 34.5 percent hard-hit rate as well as an 87.3 mile-per-hour average exit velocity and a 196-foot average batted-ball distance last season. Trout, on the other hand, smashed righties with a .450 wOBA and a .359 ISO. If Verlander is off his game a bit, he could be in trouble.

Value Hitters

Anthony Rendon ($3,800): Anthony Rendon absolutely destroyed left-handed pitching last season with an insane .461 wOBA and a .346 ISO. Tonight, he's taking on CC Sabathia, the New York Yankees' top southpaw. Sabathia thrives by inducing weak contact as evidenced by his 27.2 percent hard-hit rate and a 49.9 percent groundball rate. Furthermore, his 19.3 percent strikeout rate is not scaring anybody. Rendon has had a bit of a down year compared to last season, but it is tough to ignore him at this price.

Didi Gregorius ($3,600): Tonight seems like a slate to play studs that are extremely underpriced due to their matchup. Didi Gregorius falls into this category as he's been priced way down due to the fact that he's taking on Max Scherzer. However, similar to Verlander, Scherzer has some flaws and his insanely high 46.6 percent fly-ball rate and 190-foot average batted-ball distance are among them. While he doesn't get in to trouble much, Gregorius crushed righties last season with a .354 wOBA and a .228 ISO. And this price is just too low to pass up.

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.