DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Friday 6/22/18
Every day is unique for daily fantasy baseball, which is both a blessing and a challenge. Although we canâ€™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 numberFireâ€™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? Letâ€™s check it out, starting with the pitchers.
Pitchers to Target
Sean Newcomb ($10,500 on DraftKings): Sean Newcomb is the second-most expensive pitcher on the slate after Patrick Corbin. However, he has a much better matchup despite the lower strikeout rate. With a 24.9 percent strikeout rate this season, Newcomb's numbers are just OK, but he's taking on the struggling Baltimore Orioles, who strikeout 24.0 percent of the time -- sixth-most in the Majors. Additionally, they have the evening's fifth-lowest implied total, at 3.76 runs, putting Newcomb in a nice spot for a win.
Alex Wood ($9,100): The strikeout stuff hasn't been there for Alex Wood this season, but he has still put up a solid 1.18 WHIP and 3.44 xFIP. The 21.8 percent strikeout rate is certainly a concern, however, the New York Mets have been a disaster against left-handed pitchers. They have a 25.6 strikeout rate against lefties, which is the second-worst in the Majors, and their .280 team weighted on-base average (wOBA) and 77 wRC+ are both dead last. It's a great matchup to improve that strikeout rate against a team that struggles versus left-handed arms.
Dallas Keuchel ($8,400): The Houston Astros are slate-high -297 favorites, but despite of that their former Cy Young winner is priced way down against the Kansas City Royals. The Royals do not really strike out much, but they do at a higher clip against lefties (21.3 percent). Keuchel isn't much of a strikeout pitcher anyway, with a lowly 18.2 percent strikeout rate on the year. But he is a big time ground-ball pitcher -- with a 55.6 percent groundball rate -- and a slate-best 127 foot average batted-ball distance. His 30.2 percent hard-hit rate is also among the best on the slate.
Hitters to Target
Mookie Betts ($5,900): Mookie Betts is having an MVP-caliber season. Unfortunately, there is a guy named Mike Trout standing in his way, but Mookie has been dominant and has done most of his damage against left-handed pitching to the tune of a .497 wOBA and a .423 isolated power (ISO) -- both elite marks. He'll take on Wade LeBlanc, who has actually been OK, but his 43.3 percent fly-ball rate could cause some trouble at hitter-friendly Fenway Park.
Freddie Freeman ($5,600): Well, Freddie Freeman crushes right-handed pitchers and is taking on a terrible Baltimore Orioles pitcher in Alex Cobb. Freeman has tuned up righties with a .399 wOBA and beauty .222 ISO this season, and he should be able to continue that against Cob. The right-hander is sporting an abysmal 1.71 WHIP and almost-as-bad 4.32 xFIP. Although Cobb limits fly-balls to just 30.1 percent, when they get up they tend to go out of the park, as indicated by his 18.8 percent home run to fly-ball rate. An 89.6 mile-per-hour average exit velocity will not be doing him any favors tonight either.
George Springer ($5,000): I could just spout off every stat for Danny Duffy, and it would be difficult to find anything positive to say. He has a 1.55 WHIP, 5.34 xFIP and 39.1 percent hard-hit rate which are all terrible. Additionally, he's put up an 89.3 mile-per-hour average exit velocity and 204 foot average batted-ball distance, which do not bode well for his 47.5 percent fly-ball rate. This guy is in trouble tonight against a hitter like George Springer, who has shown plenty of power against left-handed pitching this season, putting up a solid .419 wOBA and .287 ISO.
Eric Hosmer ($3,900): The San Diego Padres are visiting the San Francisco Giants, who will trot right-hander Chris Stratton out to the mound. Stratton has struggled this season, with 43.8 percent hard-hit rate, the second-worst on the slate, and that doesn't go well with a 25.5 percent line-drive rate and 90.6 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. Eric Hosmer is pretty cheap when you consider his success against righties, putting up a .369 wOBA and .190 ISO this season.
Chris Iannetta ($3,700): Make sure to check that Chris Iannetta is in the starting lineup before rostering him, but he should be as he tends to get the start against left-handed pitching. His numbers against lefties haven't been very good this year, but in 2017 he smashed them. He had an elite .409 wOBA and .263 ISO against southpaws last season, and given that this game is in Coors Field, which has the best park factor in the Majors. Given Wei-Yin Chen's astonishingly poor fly-ball rate (47.3 percent) and a 195 foot average batted-ball distance, he could get into a lot of trouble here.
Brian Dozier ($3,600): This is another historically good hitter against left-handed pitching that has struggled this year. Brian Dozier is way too cheap, considering he destroyed lefties to the tune of a .437 wOBA and a .303 ISO in 2017. Those numbers are brutal this year, at a .281 wOBA and .133 ISO, but he'll be taking on Texas Rangers starter Mike Minor. Minor has been roughed up, giving up a 43.1 percent hard-hit rate, 88.9 mile-per-hour average exit velocity and 195 foot average batted-ball distance. Additionally, he's given up barrels on 13.8 percent of his batted-ball events, which is the second-worst on the slate.
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.