FanDuel MLB 3-Man Challenge Helper: Thursday 6/13/19
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?
Trevor Story - Coors Field is back on the 3-Man slate, and that means we're going to be looking at plenty of hitters for both the Colorado Rockies and San Diego Padres today. The game has an 11.5-run over/under, and against the fly-ball prone Matt Strahm, the Rockies show a slate-high 6.12-run implied total. Story can absolutely crush lefties. Across his 272 career plate appearances against southpaws at Coors Field, he has a massive .452 wOBA and .409 ISO. It's not a big deal if Strahm gets pulled for a righty, either, with Story still sporting a .385 wOBA and .293 ISO against righties at home.
Nolan Arenado - Double-check to see if Arenado is in the lineup after making an early exit on Wednesday (though reports are that he suffered no significant damage), because if Arenado's playing, he's a tough fade. His numbers against lefties at home over the last three years make Story's look tame, with a .545 wOBA and .443 ISO over 220 plate appearances. He's not a slouch against righties, either, flexing a .404 wOBA and .268 ISO in the split, giving him some of the highest upside you could ask for.
Gary Sanchez - If you don't want to load up on the expensive Rockies, the New York Yankees' offense also brings a ton of upside tonight against the Chicago White Sox and righty Ivan Nova, who has struggled to the tune of a 4.92 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA) in 2019. Sanchez has a .394 wOBA and huge .361 ISO over 202 plate appearances this year, and he's absolutely destroying the ball, ranking in the top 2% of the league in average exit velocity while he has the highest barrel rate and highest expected slugging percentage (.700) in the majors.
Hunter Renfroe - Our models actually have Renfroe's home-run projection set slightly ahead of Story's and Arenado's, at a slate-high 0.34. Getting that for $2 should immediately have your interest. The Rockies trot out a better pitcher than the Padres, but Jon Gray isn't exactly safe at Coors Field, giving up home runs on 15.5% of the career fly-balls he's allowed at home. Renfroe owns a massive 52.7% hard-hit rate and 42.7% fly-ball rate on the season, which is right in line with his 47.2% hard-hit and 42.8% fly-ball rate from 2018. Contact like that leaves little surprise that he's able to generate so much power (career .270 ISO, including a .355 mark over 201 plate appearances in 2019), and those numbers are especially appealing in such a favorable spot tonight.
Franmil Reyes - Another San Diego bat flexing some crazy power this year, Franmil Reyes has followed up his .360 wOBA and .218 ISO in 2018 with a .344 wOBA and .305 ISO over 231 plate appearances this year. He sits 17th in the majors in expected slugging percentage in 2019, thanks in part to a 50.0% hard-hit rate, 11.3% soft-hit rate and 36.7% fly-ball rate. Once again, that's exactly the kind of Coors-friendly contact you like to see, and like Renfroe, Reyes has $3-type upside.
David Dahl - Dahl isn't super exciting against left-handed pitching, but he's still shown himself to be capable of some pretty strong contact in the split, with a 42.2% hard-hit rate over 67 plate appearances this year after posting a 38.1% mark in 66 plate appearances last year. He pairs that hard contact with a passable 33.7% fly-ball rate over those two seasons, and in an admittedly tiny sample of 79 plate appearances at home, that contact has translated to a .433 wOBA and .257 ISO. That level of production probably isn't sustainable, but it's a good indicator of just how beneficial it can be to hit in Coors Field. Adding in tonight's soft pitching matchup, Dahl is risky but carries plenty of upside.
Wil Myers - $1 exposure to the Coors Game? I'm in. Even as underdogs, the Padres have the slate's third-highest implied total (5.38 runs), and our models have Myers fifth among hitters on the slate with a projected 0.24 home runs. His 50.4% hard-hit rate and 35.1% fly-ball rate in 2019 show his power potential, and while his .199 ISO isn't as gaudy of a mark as what his teammates boast, it's still a great clip for a hitter this cheap in such a favorable situation.
Christin Stewart - The Kansas City Royals are starting righty Homer Bailey, whose 4.79 SIERA is weak. But said SIERA is also the best mark he's posted since a six-game 2016 campaign. He's also allowing a hard-hit rate north of 40% for the second straight season. The 25-year-old Stewart has made 218 career plate appearances against righties, turning a 38.5% hard-hit rate and 46.2% fly-ball rate into a .337 wOBA and .197 ISO, making him a prime option if you're trying to fade the likely higher-owned Myers in a $1 spot.
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.