5 Daily Fantasy Baseball Value Plays for 5/24/19
With production being highly variable on a night-to-night basis, daily fantasy baseball plays a bit differently than other sports.
An 0-for-4 dud from a chalky high-priced slugger is a lot more common than a total dud from a top-priced NBA player or even than a stinker from a top quarterback or running back.
That means that it's not uncommon for value plays to end up doing the heavy lifting in carrying your lineup. The fact that they can be the difference between a good and a great lineup isn't much different than other sports, but value plays being able to make up for a whiff on a high-priced play completely is somewhat unique.
Let's get right into it and take a look at the top value options on today's slate.
Matt Adams, 1B, Washington Nationals ($2,300)
Adams only has a .297 wOBA over 72 plate appearance in 2019, but I'm not too concerned. He's still showing plenty of power, with a .203 ISO and 42.9% hard-hit rate, and 72 plate appearances is a small sample. He's coming off a 2018 campaign that saw him notch a .334 wOBA and .239 ISO over 337 plate appearances, and that came with a slightly lower hard-hit rate (39.1%) and higher soft-hit rate (18.5%, compared to 14.3% in 2019).
Adams also gets a nice boost when he has the platoon advantage, and the last two seasons have seen him notch a .357 wOBA with a .259 ISO (2017) and .343 wOBA with a .253 ISO (2018) in the split.
Raimel Tapia, OF, Colorado Rockies ($3,000)
The Colorado Rockies have a giant 6.3-run implied total as they host the Baltimore Orioles and lefty John Means, who has a career 4.48 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA) and 42.8% fly-ball rate in 12 games at the major league level.
That makes the Rockies an offense you'll really want to target, and there aren't many cheap ways to do it. That means that, even in a same-sided matchup, Tapia becomes a really interesting upside play.
He owns a .360 wOBA and .242 ISO on the season, and his 34.8% hard-hit and 13.5% soft-hit rates are both by far the best marks of his young major league career. We've only seen him get 40 cracks at southpaws this year, so take this with a huge grain of salt, but he's turned in a stellar 43.5% hard-hit rate and 43.5% fly-ball rate in that sample, so he's certainly not looking lost in same-sided matchups.
Chad Pinder, OF, Oakland Athletics ($2,600)
It's been a bit of a down year so far for Pinder, but his .319 wOBA and .181 ISO are still passable marks, and as always he's doing much better work against left-handed pitching.
It's only a 54 plate appearance sample, but he's got a .369 wOBA and .260 ISO against lefties, bringing him to a .367 wOBA and .202 ISO on a huge 54.1% hard-hit rate over 204 plate appearances in the split since 2018.
Tonight he has a great matchup to take advantage of, taking on Wade LeBlanc and the Seattle Mariners. LeBlanc has only pitched four games so far this season, but he's got a 7.36 ERA and 5.38 SIERA, with a lowly 15.2% strikeout rate and a batted-ball profile that includes a 42.3% hard-hit rate, 7.0% soft-hit rate and 46.5% fly-ball rate.
Curtis Granderson, OF, Miami Marlins ($2,400)
Another platoon advantage play, Granderson might be 38 years old, but we've still seen him notch a wOBA of at least .340 against right-handed pitching in each of his last four seasons. He's only opened this year with a .271 in the split, but that comes with a .200 BABIP over 113 plate appearances. That's not a sustainable mark (especially with his strong 38.3% hard-hit rate), so instead of worrying about the dip in production, we should be jumping on the opportunity to get him for cheap.
Tonight he's up against Washington Nationals righty Kyle McGowin, who has a 4.53 SIERA over six major league games and who only managed a 4.31 xFIP in his eight Triple-A starts this year, and our models have Granderson as a top-five point-per-dollar value on the slate.
Steve Pearce, 1B, Boston Red Sox ($2,300)
Miley is turning in an impressive ERA for the second straight season, but his 4.62 SIERA is right in line with his weak 4.66 from 2018, and considering his 5.07 in 2017, there's not much hope that he turns things around.
Over those three seasons, he's given up a .341 wOBA and 4.52 xFIP to right-handed bats, which sets things up nicely for Pearce, who does by far his best work against lefties.
Pearce has an awful .225 wOBA so far in 2019, but he's only got a .245 wOBA (compared to a .287 career-average) and 5.3% home-run-to-fly-ball rate (12.5% career-average), so we can expect some serious regression.
He has turned in a wOBA north of .400 against left-handed hurlers in two of his last three seasons, and going back to 2016 (352 plate appearances) he has a hefty .368 wOBA and .245 ISO on a 36.5% hard-hit rat in the split. Not exactly the level of production you typically see priced only $300 above the minimum.
Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. 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.