DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 9/19/18
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
Walker Buehler ($11,300 on DraftKings): The Los Angeles Dodgers are -230 favorites, which is the second-largest on the slate. Walker Buehler has been great this season, with a 27.9 percent strikeout rate and 0.99 WHIP -- both of which lead the slate -- and a 3.17 xFIP. He also sports a slate-best 18.8 percent line-drive rate. This is an elite matchup for Buehler, as he's taking on the Colorado Rockies, who have a 23.5 percent strikeout rate that ranks ninth-worst in the Majors against righties. And to boot, the Rockies have an MLB-worst 79 wRC+ in the split.
Robbie Ray ($9,200): With a slate-best 30.9 percent strikeout rate, Robbie Ray should be a much easier play. However, there are some concerning numbers numbers like a slate-worst 43.3 percent hard-hit rate and a not-so-great 1.34 WHIP. He's taking on a Chicago Cubs team that has plenty of offensive talent, but they do strike out a decent amount against left-handed pitching, as indicated by their 22.8 percent strikeout rate. Ray has a solid -- yet underwhelming -- 3.81 xFIP and 20.7 percent line-drive rate, which will hopefully help keep the Cubs in check.
Robbie Erlin ($4,600): This price tag is a bit perplexing for a starting pitcher that isn't just downright terrible. Erlin has a low 20.5 percent strikeout rate, which will limit his upside, but he has an elite 1.14 WHIP and 3.37 xFIP. His pitch count remains an issue, as he has only pitched 80-plus twice over his last five games, though he has picked up six-plus strikeouts in three of those five. The San Francisco Giants have a 23.2 percent strikeout rate against left-handed pitching, which is the seventh-most in the Majors. Although Erlin's strikeout rate is low, at this price point you don't need him to pile on the strikeouts.
Hitters to Target
Jose Ramirez ($5,800): Jose Ramirez has absolutely destroyed right-handed pitching this season. He not only has an elite .420 weighted on-base average (wOBA) but his .328 isolated power (ISO) is among the best in the Majors. He's a switch-hitter that still puts up solid numbers against left-handed pitching, but the matchup against righty Dylan Covey is a premium one. Covey has a slate-worst 1.55 WHIP with the fourth-worst xFIP (4.48) on the slate. Additionally, his 16.2 percent strikeout rate is among the worst going tonight.
Aaron Judge ($5,100): All rise! Aaron Judge just came off the DL prior to the Yankees' last game, and we're going to jump right into it. He is taking on the Boston Red Sox' David Price, a left-handed pitcher that has been pretty solid this season. He has an elite 1.10 WHIP and solid 3.82 xFIP. Furthermore, a 31.5 percent hard-hit rate, 20.6 line-drive rate and 11.4 percent home run to fly-ball rate are also among the best on this slate. Why are we talking up Price's numbers? Well, I don't think it will make a huge difference considering Judge has a .408 wOBA and .271 ISO, numbers that are good enough to still crush Price despite his success on the mound this season.
Tyler White ($4,900): The Houston Astros pretty much crush right-handed pitching, but Tyler Write stands out with his exceptional splits. He has a .399 wOBA and a .298 ISO against righties and takes on Mike Leake of the Seattle Mariners. Leake doesn't strike anybody out, as his 15.2 percent strikeout rate would show, but his 4.17 xFIP isn't the greatest. Plus, he has a fairly poor 89.6 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. White has been hitting the ball well lately, too, with a .313 AVG, 1.050 OPS, 1 home run and 10 RBI over his last 10 games.
Jesus Aguilar ($4,400): This is a pretty solid matchup for Jesus Aguilar and the Milwaukee Brewers. Against right-handed pitching, Aguilar has been solid, putting up a very good .371 wOBA and an equally impressive .269 ISO. While these numbers aren't necessarily among the most elite hitters, but the price of $4,400 is probably too cheap given he's taking on Matt Harvey. Harvey has a 1.29 WHIP, 4.24 xFIP, 38.2 percent hard-hit rate and 37.4 percent fly-ball rate, which has led to a 14.5 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate.
Cedric Mullins ($4,200): The Baltimore Orioles absolutely stink, so writing one up as a play is pretty difficult. But Cedric Mullins has actually been pretty good for the O's against right-handed pitching. He has a .376 wOBA and .223 ISO -- numbers similar to those of Anthony Rizzo, Jose Altuve and Charlie Blackmon. The matchup to showcase himself couldn't get much better than the Toronto Blue Jays' Marco Estrada. He has a 1.44 WHIP and a slate-worst 5.78 xFIP. Additionally, his 55.7 percent fly-ball rate and 217 foot average batted-ball distance are the worst numbers among Wednesday's pitchers.
Hunter Renfroe ($3,800): Another struggling team it is difficult to recommend a player from is the San Diego Padres. However, much like Mullins, Renfroe has been pretty solid against right-handed pitching, especially in the power department. Although Renfroe's .342 wOBA is solid, it is an impressive .268 ISO that gives us reason to roster him. The matchup is fantastic, as Chris Stratton has struggled in 2018. He has a 40.1 percent hard-hit rate, 25.2 percent line-drive rate and a slate-worst 90.2 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. Look to take advantage at this low cost.
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.