DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Thursday 4/11/19
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
Jon Gray ($9,300 on DraftKings): On a short, five-game slate, the pitching options are futile. We have Jon Gray as probably the best pitching option on the slate when you consider matchup, price and talent. Now, he struggled mightily in 2018, giving up a 36.1 percent hard-hit rate and 18.1 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate. However, he also has a slate-best 24.6 percent strikeout rate and 3.47 xFIP. He'll face a San Francisco Giants team that has scored just 38 runs through their first 13 games, so Gray could take advantage of a struggling lineup.
Kevin Gausman ($7,500): Kevin Gausman was like a completely different pitcher in the second half of last season. He lowered his average against from .280 in the first half to .233 in the second half, his WHIP down from 1.37 to 1.19 and his FIP down from 4.49 to 4.06. He had a good-not-great strikeout rate of just 19.1 percent last season but started off 2019 with a bang, striking out seven across seven innings in his first start against the Miami Marlins. This a relatively cheap price, and although he doesn't have the easiest matchup against the New York Mets, it's a nice value price for Gausman.
Hitters to Target
J.D. Martinez ($5,200): In 2018, J.D. Martinez absolutely smashed right-handed pitching. Tonight, he'll take on Toronto Blue Jays' right-hander Aaron Sanchez, a pitcher that struggled last season but has been quite solid in his two starts in 2019. Sanchez had an abysmal 12.2 percent walk rate, as well as a 5.10 SIERA to go along with an 89.0 mile-per-hour average exit velocity. Those could be troublesome, as Martinez put up a staggering .434 weighted on-base average (wOBA) and an equally impressive .315 isolated power (ISO) against righties last season.
Charlie Blackmon ($4,400): Speaking of pitchers that struggled in 2018, Jeff Samardzija was a disaster in his 44-plus innings. He has a slate-worst 5.96 SIERA, 46.5 percent fly-ball rate, and a measly 14.5 percent strikeout rate. Charlie Blackmon was pretty good against right-handed pitching last season despite it being a down year for his high standards. He was still able to put up a .376 wOBA and a .235 ISO against righties, and finds himself in a prime spot tonight against Samardzija.
Adam Jones ($4,200): Adam Jones has started the season off on an absolute tear, having tallied a hit in each of his first nine games. Now, that hitting streak has ended, but he has still put up an incredible .354 batting average, 1.080 OPS and four home runs. Jones will take on San Diego Padres' right-hander Pedro Avila, who will be making his MLB debut. It's tough to really gauge how he has been since he only has one start above High-A ball, but given that this is his first start, and against an Arizona offense off to a solid start, we are going to side with them over the inexperienced Avila.
Freddy Galvis ($3,900): There is one hitter that is pulling their weight -- and then some -- for the Blue Jays this season, and that is Freddy Galvis. He has a .333 average, 1.022 OPS and three home runs. Of course, this is a very small sample size, but he'll take on righty Nathan Eovaldi of the Boston Red Sox in Fenway Park tonight. Early on, Eovaldi is a pitcher who has struggled to start things off this season. He's given up nine earned runs -- including four home runs -- in just 10 innings, and he struggled to the tune of 1.14 HR/9 in 2018. Galvis should keep his production rolling in this 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.