FanDuel MLB 3-Man Challenge Helper: Friday 6/7/19
Sometimes, you just don't have time to track the weather, check the splits, and wait for the batting order to be posted to build a full nine-man FanDuel MLB roster. It happens. But that no longer means you can't build some lineups, thanks to FanDuel's MLB 3-Man Challenge game style.
The premise is simple: build a three-player roster for a $7 salary cap, and only hits and RBI count toward netting FanDuel points. One player is your MVP, and his points are multiplied by 1.5, and you just need to roster players from at least two different teams. That more or less covers it, but you should familiarize yourself with the basic strategy for the new game style to help you in tonight's marquee 3-Man Challenge contest.
That being said, which options stand out at each price range for today's 3-Man Challenge slate?
Christian Yelich - Like yesterday, Yelich is right at the top on this slate. The three pricing tiers flatten out salaries, and as the most expensive bat in standard full-slate contests, that should immediately catch your eye in 3-Man games. He gets a great matchup against Pittsburgh Pirates righty Rookie Davis, who hasn't looked especially good in the majors so far, and few hitters are as good against righties as Yelich, who has a .441 wOBA and .319 ISO in the split over 629 plate appearances since 2018. Our models also project him for the highest score on the slate.
Alex Bregman - Not far behind Yelich, Bregman doesn't get the platoon advantage today, but that doesn't really matter. He has an equally terrific .397 wOBA against both right- and left-handed pitching over the last two seasons, with only a very slight difference in ISO. So far he has 204 plate appearances against righties in 2019, during which he's turned in an especially good .414 wOBA and .287 ISO on a 39.3% hard-hit and 41.4% fly-ball rate. The righty he's up against tonight isn't an especially tough one either, with the unproven Gabriel Ynoa leading an underwhelming Baltimore Orioles bullpen on Friday.
Whit Merrifield - There's a big drop-off in this tier after Yelich and Bregman, and frankly there's not much to be interested in at $3 beyond those two. Merrifield does offer some upside if you're looking for a contrarian play though, and we have him projected for the third-highest fantasy score on tonight's 3-Man slate as he goes up against the struggling Ivan Nova. The Kansas City Royals also have the second-highest implied total (5.24 runs) on this slate -- though that's probably better taken advantage of with some of their cheaper bats.
Alex Gordon - One of those cheaper bats, Alex Gordon has a solid .365 wOBA and .220 ISO over 253 plate appearances this season, coming in with a strong 37.2% hard-hit and 34.8% fly-ball rate. His production has been especially good against right-handed hurlers, with his wOBA climbing to .379 and his ISO to .245.
Matt Chapman - Our top-projected player at $2 (and with the fifth-highest projection on the slate), Chapman is in a plus spot, in a game with a 10-run over/under against Texas Rangers righty Lance Lynn. We'd rather see Chapman against a southpaw, but over three major league seasons he's cracked righties for a .360 wOBA and .248 ISO on a 41.8% hard-hit and 41.2% fly-ball rate, so there's no need to turn up our nose at a matchup with Lynn and his 39.1% hard-hit rate.
Mike Moustakas - Going back to the Brewers and their slate-high implied total, Moustakas' .308 ISO this season might not be sustainable, but he's also making some of the best contact of his career, with a 43.4% hard-hit rate and 45.6% fly-ball rate. His .526 expected slugging percentage is also the highest of his career, so it wouldn't be a surprise if he finished 2019 with career-best power numbers. We have him tied for the highest home run projections (0.21) of any of today's $2 hitters, and he offers no shortage of upside here.
Matt Olson - We give Olson the second-highest home run projection (0.28) and fourth-highest fantasy point projection (13.1) of hitters available on this 3-Man slate, and for $1 that should obviously have you pretty excited about him. Like Chapman, he gets the matchup with Lance Lynn, who has an especially shaky 4.60 xFIP against left-handed bats this season. Olson's expected slugging percentage is up to .543 this season (a career-high), and he has jumped on right-handed pitchers for a 51.0% hard-hit and 57.1% fly-ball rate on the year.
Eric Thames - Having no penalty for strikeouts and extra emphasis on power makes this format a perfect place to play Eric Thames. He struck out at a 34.9% clip last year and has a 35.7% strikeout rate to start 2019, but he's also rocking a .355 wOBA and .257 ISO on a 43.8% hard-hit and 42.7% fly-ball rate since returning to the majors in 2017. As another Milwaukee bat, he too gets a boost thanks to the high implied total and primo matchup with the Baltimore bullpen.
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.