DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Tuesday 7/10/18
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
Justin Verlander ($13,300 on DraftKings): Well, we saw Gerrit Cole go 6 innings with 11 strikeouts last night (albeit in a no-decision) against these same Oakland Athletics last night, and with Justin Verlander's elite numbers, one could expect him to have a very good outing as well. He's got a 31.8 percent strikeout rate, 0.84 WHIP and 28.2 percent hard-hit rate, all of which are the best on the slate. Additionally, his 3.51 xFIP is fourth-best, and the Houston Astros are -220 favorites on the moneyline.
Masahiro Tanaka ($9,100): This will be Masahiro Tanaka's first game off the DL, and he has a very solid matchup against the Baltimore Orioles. The O's are striking out at a 23.5 clip, which is the seventh-worst in the Majors. Beyond the strikeouts, they have struggled to generate any type of offense as they sit 29th with an 82 wRC+. The New York Yankees are -223 favorites, making them the second-largest ones on the slate. Prior to his injury, Tanaka had been solid with a 24.8 percent strikeout rate, 1.09 WHIP and a 3.75 xFIP. He should maintain that form here.
Marcus Stroman ($6,900): Marcus Stroman is absurdly cheap, though it is not that surprising given how poorly he's pitched this season. However, since coming back from the DL three starts ago, he's had two solid outings and one brutal one. While the matchup against the Atlanta Braves isn't good by any stretch of the imagination, Stroman still boasts some numbers that prove he could be getting a bit unlucky. Despite his 6.50 ERA, he has a very solid 3.90 xFIP and his 20.7 percent fly-ball rate and 127 foot average batted-ball distance are both tops on the slate. You could do a lot worse for your sub-$7k SP2.
Hitters to Target
J.D. Martinez ($5,800): The Boston Red Sox have an implied run total of 5.88, the largest on the slate. This is due to the fact that they are facing the horrible Yovani Gallardo and the Texas Rangers. Gallardo is sporting a brutal 1.70 WHIP and 4.75 xFIP while he's been unable to strike anybody out (15.5 percent strikeout rate). That's great for J.D. Martinez, who has absolutely smashed right-handed pitching to the tune of a .449 weighted on-base average (wOBA) and a .355 isolated power (ISO) this season.
Nolan Arenado ($5,800): Happy Coors Field Day! Whether you want to play Coors Field teams or not, they are always a factor and the decision must be made. Tonight, it might be easier to make that decision when we're talking Nolan Arenado. He's taking on a lefty in Patrick Corbin, who has been elite this season, so you may get some lower ownership on him, but The Arizona Diamondbacks starter has given up a 44.3 percent hard-hit rate, 24.2 percent line-drive rate and 89 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. He's forced a lot of groundballs, which could lead to a lot of outs, but given that Arenado has smashed southpaws for a .533 wOBA and .407 ISO, I feel it's worth playing him.
Eddie Rosario ($4,800): Eddie Rosario has struggled as of late. Considering he's hitting for a .300 average on the season, the .214 average he has over his last 10 games is brutal. However, he has a great split tonight as he's taking on Kansas City Royals right-hander Ian Kennedy. Rosario has had plenty of success against righties this season, possessing a .397 wOBA and .263 ISO against them. He's got power, and his six stolen bases show a bit of speed, too. Kennedy, on the other hand, has given up a 26.4 percent line-drive rate, 89.2 mile-per-hour average exit velocity ad 207 foot average batted-ball distance.
Justin Smoak ($4,100): Justin Smoak is a switch-hitter who has found more success against right-handed pitching this season compared to lefties. He's putting up a .354 wOBA and a very solid .239 ISO. Tonight, he's going to take on Julio Teheran of the Atlanta Braves, a pitcher that has been struggling this season. Teheran has a 4.68 xFIP with a 39.0 percent hard-hit rate, 42.5 percent fly-ball rate, 88.8 mile-per-hour average exit velocity and 192 foot average batted-ball distance, which has led to a poor 16.2 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate.
Brandon Nimmo ($4,000): Although he has struggled mightily as of late -- as evidenced by his .162 average and .527 OPS over his last 10 games, Brandon Nimmo has smashed right-handed pitching this season. Nimmo leads the team with a .403 wOBA and .273 ISO against righties, and he goes up against Enyel De Los Santos, who will be making his Major League debut. I don't know much about Santos, but considering his minor league numbers, with a 1.89 ERA compared to a 3.89 xFIP, he seems to betting lucky. And with a 22.7 percent strikeout this season in Triple-A, he presents no cause of concern in that department tonight.
Jose Abreu ($3,900): This play is a lot more about the price rather than the matchup. Below $4,000, Abreau seems way too cheap for a hitter of his caliber. He has been brutal lately so that is part of the reason for his price decrease, but that's all the more reason to utilize the price decrease. Abreu was solid against righties last season, with a .361 wOBA and .239 ISO, so there is some hope for a turnaround. Miles Mikolas will be on the mound for the St. Louis Cardinals, and he brings in a combination of low strikeouts (17.1 percent strikeout rate) and high line drive opportunities (22.4 percent line-drive rate). Take advantage while you can.
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.