3 MLB FanDuel Studs to Target on 6/7/19
Just like in other sports, the focal point of your daily fantasy baseball lineups will be your high-priced studs. These guys take up by far the biggest chunk of your cap space, but they also offer the highest ceiling, and in the case of pitcher, by far the highest floors for production.
For hitters, we're looking for guys with big numbers, strong matchups, and with players around them that are likely to produce well too, increasing our chances for runs and RBI. For pitchers we want big strikeout numbers, while the ability to go deep in a game and pick up a win is also valuable.
Taking up so much salary, and playing such a big role in your lineup's ceiling, you're not going to want to whiff on these guys, so lets take a look at a few top-end options that you can count on to anchor your lineup today.
Gerrit Cole, P, Houston Astros ($11,200)
There are a ton of top arms on this slate, and they all seem to get good matchups. But even in a stacked group, oddsmakers have Cole and the Houston Astros standing out as the slate's biggest favorites (-350 moneyline) while the Baltimore Orioles are the only team in action with an implied total below 3 runs (2.92).
Cole broke out with a 2.91 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA) and a 34.5% strikeout rate in 2018, and while his ERA is higher, he has improved on both of those other marks in 2019. His SIERA is down to only 2.74, and his strikeout rate is up to 37.4%, backed up by an increase in swinging-strike rate (14.1% to 15.8%) as well.
No other qualifying pitcher comes within even 2% of Cole's strikeout rate this season, and that stellar SIERA is also the class of the majors by a big margin (next-best is 2.92).
The Orioles have been poor against right-handed pitching this season, with an 83 wRC+, and while they don't strike out at an egregious rate, Cole's strength in that area means he's still got plenty of upside.
Christian Yelich, OF, Milwaukee Brewers ($4,900)
On the other side of things, we can also find some hefty implied totals on Friday's big slate. That includes the Milwaukee Brewers, who have a slate-high mark of 5.78 runs against right-hander Rookie Davis and the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Davis has now pitched 11 major league games (31 2/3 innings) in his career, struggling to the tune of a 5.08 SIERA. He has a solid 3.81 mark so far in 2019, but that's not even over an eight-inning sample. His bigger sample in 2019 is his 37 Triple-A innings, in which he posted an ugly 5.58 xFIP.
Christian Yelich is not going to make things easy on Davis, owning a massive .489 wOBA and .429 ISO against right-handed pitching this season, following up already-stellar marks of a .425 wOBA and .281 ISO in 2018.
Alex Bregman, SS, Houston Astros ($4,500)
Bregman is not a guy who suffers much with the platoon advantage, having smacked right-handed pitchers for a .390 wOBA and .243 ISO and improving those marks to a .414 wOBA and .287 ISO on a 39.3% hard-hit and 41.4% fly-ball rate over 204 plate appearances in 2019.
Over the last two seasons his production has been nearly identical against left- and right-handed hurlers, with a .397 wOBA in both splits and a difference in ISO of only .006.
Being robust to any type of pitching is easy to like against Gabriel Ynoa and the O's tonight since Ynoa isn't likely to last too deep into this one. He's made only two starts on the year, pitching four and five innings while giving up two earned runs in each. As a starting pitcher in his young major league career, he has a shaky 4.33 xFIP over 40 1/3 innings, and he owns a career 4.31 SIERA. The relievers behind him shouldn't slow Bregman down at all either, as the O's relief group has a 4.87 xFIP -- the fifth-worst in the majors.
As mentioned above for Cole, the Astros are massive favorites tonight, and that also comes with a strong 5.08-run implied total, meaning there should be plenty of opportunity for runs and RBI to go with the fantasy value Bregman's bat offers.
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.