5 Daily Fantasy Baseball Value Plays for 5/31/19
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.
Derek Fisher, OF, Houston Astros ($2,000)
Derek Fisher has only made 17 plate appearances this year, which isn't nearly enough that we should be at all concerned about his .286 wOBA. He did only managed a .251 wOBA in 86 career plate appearances last year, but that's still not much of a sample. He made 154 Triple-A plate appearances to start 2019, posting a .392 wOBA and .241 ISO, building on his .358 wOBA and .184 ISO in the minors last year.
He's also made much better contact than his major league production might suggest, with a 38.3% hard-hit rate. His lack of production has him priced at the minimum tonight, though, which we can happily take advantage of.
Making this spot even better is Oakland Athletics righty Mike Fiers is really struggling in 2019. It's been a long time since he's looked like any sort of a killer, with a SIERA of 4.25 or worse in each of his last three seasons, but this year's 5.08 mark is especially poor. It also comes with his lowest strikeout rate (16.8%) since 2013 and a career-high 40.5% hard-hit rate, which is up slightly from last year's previous career-high of 39.1%.
Eduardo Nunez, 3B, Boston Red Sox ($2,000)
With last night's game pushed back, just about everything I said about Eduardo Nunez yesterday holds true today.
He's not hitting the ball well this year, but he's shown at least a base level of competence against southpaws, with a wOBA of .315 or better in the split in two of the last three years. Happ's also had some real struggles against lefty bats this season, with a 5.03 xFIP, .360 wOBA and 41.2% hard-hit rate.
Tonight's Coors Field game makes saving money even more crucial on this 15-game slate, and Nunez is also priced down to the stone minimum, $100 below where he was last night. He remains in play here.
Tony Wolters, C, Colorado Rockies ($3,000)
Wolters could end up being the only Colorado Rockies bat priced in the value range tonight, so he's worth considering.
The Rockies show an absurd 6.87-run implied total here, which is over 1.5 runs higher than any other team's. They're playing in the hitter-friendly confines of Coors Field and welcome Toronto Blue Jays righty Edwin Jackson, who's allowed a fly-ball rate over 40% since 2016 and hasn't posted a SIERA better than 4.98 in any of those seasons.
Wolters has an uninspiring .313 wOBA on the year, but he'll be hitting at home with the platoon advantage, which is a split that has seen him notch a solid .333 wOBA. With the boost he gets against Jackson and the high potential for runs and RBI, that's enough to put him in play.
Keep an eye on Colorado's lineup when it drops because anyone starting priced down this low will probably be worth at least taking a look at.
Ryan O'Hearn, 1B, Kansas City Royals ($2,500)
Our top-projected point-per-dollar value on the slate, O'Hearn is another guy struggling over a smallish sample, with a .285 wOBA and .147 ISO over 181 plate appearances in 2019. Combined with his rookie numbers from 2018, though, that give him a career-average .340 wOBA and .239 ISO on a 39.5% hard-hit rate and 37.1% fly-ball rate over 351 plate appearances.
Against right-handed pitching (over a still reasonable 279 plate appearances) we see that jump way up to a .372 wOBA and .277 ISO on a 44.1% hard-hit rate, 9.5% soft-hit rate and 41.9% fly-ball rate. Those numbers are easy to like in nearly any matchup at this price, so he's in play before we even factor in the matchup with Texas Rangers righty Ariel Jurado.
Jurado has made two starts this season, pitching a total of 10 2/3 innings between them, so even though he usually serves as a reliever, O'Hearn should get at least a few cracks at Jurado and his ugly career-average 4.91 SIERA.
Pablo Sandoval, 3B, San Francisco Giants ($2,600)
Cashner has been egregious for years now, with a 5.52 SIERA in 2017 and a 5.33 in 2018, and while he's been slightly better this year, a 4.66 SIERA and career-high 40.3% hard-hit rate shouldn't scare you off from targeting hitters against him.
The San Francisco Giants offense is nothing special, but Sandoval has a terrific .378 wOBA over 109 plate appearances this season. That's not going to hold up long-term for a guy with a career-average .335 wOBA, but he's making some great contact (45.9% hard hits, 35.1% fly balls), so we can expect him to keep producing at a decent clip. The switch-hitter has also done by far his best work against right-handed pitching over his career, jumping from a .283 wOBA and .106 ISO against lefties to a .355 wOBA and .190 ISO against righties.
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.