DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Monday 6/18/18
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
Trevor Bauer ($12,400 on DraftKings): Trevor Bauer has been an absolute stud this season and gets a superb matchup. The Cleveland Indians host the Chicago White Sox, a team that is striking out at a 25.5 percent clip, which is the third-most in the Majors. This is great for Bauer as he has put up a 31.1 percent strikeout rate himself, which is the third-best clip on the slate. He also has an impressive 1.12 WHIP and 3.05 xFIP. Hard-contact has been a bit of an issue for Bauer this season as he's given up a 37.9 percent hard-hit rate, but his swing-and-miss upside makes him the day's top pitching play.
Jacob deGrom ($11,200): This is a tough one because obviously Jacob deGrom is incredible, but he's pitching in Coors Field, which is never fun. However, the Colorado Rockies have actually been a pretty terrible hitting team, with their 82 wRC+ being the second-worst in the league and a 23.2 percent strikeout rate. Their wRC+ is just 83 at home, so that is encouraging for DeGrom, who has a slate-leading 2.48 xFIP, 24.3 percent hard-hit rate and 84.9 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. Those numbers along with his 1.01 WHIP and 32.8 percent strikeout rate make him an intriguing contrarian play.
Nick Pivetta ($7,300): Considering how cheap he is on DraftKings, Nick Pivetta has a very nice 26.9 percent strikeout rate and is a modest -107 favorite against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cards are not really a strikeout-heavy team, with their 22.4 percent strikeout rate sitting 13th in the Majors. However, they have struggled to score runs with 294 on the season, which is 21st in the Majors, and a 95 wRC+ that ranks 16th.
Hitters to Target
Jose Ramirez ($5,400): The Indians have the highest implied run total (5.22) as they take on Dylan Covey of the Chicago White Sox. Jose Ramirez has crushed right-handed pitching this season, putting up an elite .437 weighted on-base average (wOBA) and .356 isolated power (ISO). Covey, on the other hand, has actually been very good, with the only real knock on him being his 90 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. However, with the strength in the Indians' lineup, Covey could be in trouble.
Eric Thames ($4,800): After missing about seven weeks of action, Eric Thames returned to the Milwaukee Brewers' lineup last week. He had started off slowly, but he smashed two home runs yesterday. He has had plenty of success against right-handed pitching this season, posting an incredible .412 wOBA and .420 ISO. Thames struggles with strikeouts, but against Trevor Williams who has just a 16.4 percent strikeout rate, that should not be much of an issue.
Shin-Soo Choo ($4,500): The Texas Rangers struggle to score runs, but Shin-Soo Choo has had plenty of success against right-handed pitchers. And when that pitcher is Ian Kennedy, it's even better. Choo has crushed righties with a .389 wOBA and .219 ISO, and Kennedy has struggled pretty much across the board with a horrendous 1.55 WHIP, 4.51 xFIP, 38.6 percent hard-hit rate and 206-foot average batted-ball distance. This is a fantastic matchup for Choo and the Rangers.
Mike Moustakas ($3,900): Mike Moustakas has a ton of power and gets a great matchup against Big Sexy Bartolo Colon of the Rangers. Moustakas has crushed righties this year with a .371 wOBA and .257 ISO. Colon, on the other hand, has given up a 44.9 percent hard-hit rate, 23.5 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate and a 90.5 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. The Kansas City Royals' lineup isn't great, but they have the power to get to Colon early and often.
Andrelton Simmons ($3,600): Simmons is one of just a couple Los Angeles Angels hitters who has had success against right-handed pitching this season. Mike Trout, obviously, and Shohei Ohtani are the top two, and then comes Simmons, who has a solid .363 wOBA and .142 ISO in the split. Nothing groundbreaking here and a matchup against Zack Greinke looks bad on the surface. However, Greinke has given up a horrific 44.7 percent hard-hit rate with a 16.5 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate, 89.5 mile-per-hour average exit velocity and a 191-foot average batted-ball distance. His underlying numbers are scary, and the Angels could be a sneaky-good stack tonight.
Odubel Herrera ($3,500): Admittedly, this is not the best matchup for Odubel Herrera, who takes on Miles Mikolas of the Cardinals. Mikolas doesn't have that much going against him other than his weak 18.7 percent strikeout rate. This is more about the price on Herrera, which seems very low. He's had some decent success against right-handed pitching this season with a .347 wOBA and .156 ISO, and he makes for a great salary saver in a relatively neutral matchup.
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.