MLB

5 Daily Fantasy Baseball Value Plays for 6/19/19

The Pirates' offense is in a terrific spot with Jordan Zimmermann taking the mound for the Tigers. Which cost-effective bats should be at the top of your list on Wednesday?

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.

Kevin Newman, SS, Pittsburgh Pirates ($3,000)

FanDuel Sportsbook doesn't have an over/under set for this game yet, but the Pittsburgh Pirates are big -172 favorites and should have no trouble generating offense against Detroit Tigers righty Jordan Zimmermann.

The 33-year-old Zimmermann is on pace for one of his worst major league seasons, with a 5.31 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA). Considering he had marks worse than 4.80 in two of his last three seasons as well, there's not a lot of room for optimism that he'll improve much either.

Newman projects to bat leadoff for the Pirates tonight, and with a solid .346 wOBA over 167 major league plate appearances this season he is more than capable of taking advantage of the high number of plate appearances he stands to see here.

Chris Taylor, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers ($2,500)

You can get cheaper at shortstop and still find some great value too.

The Los Angeles Dodgers have a reasonable 4.48-run implied total against San Francisco Giants lefty Drew Pomeranz, who has improved on last year's awful 5.10 SIERA, but still only has a weak 4.65. His walk rate is also up in the double-digits for the second straight season.

Chris Taylor's production is down some this year, but he's still sporting a capable .326 wOBA to go with a powerful .230 ISO against left-handed pitching. Over 463 plate appearances in the split since 2017, Taylor has tagged southpaws for a .336 wOBA and .200 ISO on a 36.4% hard-hit and 39.7% fly-ball rate.

Colin Moran, 3B, Pittsburgh Pirates ($2,700)

Back to the Pirates' dreamy matchup, Zimmermann has an especially tough time with left-handed bats. He's giving up a huge .384 wOBA in the split so far in 2019, and since 2017 (707 batters faced) lefty stick have blasted him for a .363 wOBA and 4.93 xFIP.

Moran's overall production is already viable for a value play this year, with a .332 wOBA and .197 ISO over 215 plate appearances, and he gets a nice boost with the platoon advantage (especially when the right he's facing is as bad as Zimmermann).

His numbers against righties improve to a .339 wOBA with a .222 ISO, and that comes on a 39.5% hard-hit rate over 193 plate appearances.

Gregory Polanco, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates ($2,900)

That production Zimmermann allows to left-handed bats comes with some big contact numbers as well, including a 39.2% hard-hit and 41.6% fly-ball rate since 2017.

Polanco is more than capable of taking advantage of those numbers. He's never had much trouble getting the ball in the air against righties, with a fly-ball rate of at least 38.6% in the split in each of the last four seasons (including a huge 51.4% in 2018), and his hard-hit rate is up to a career-best 40.7% against righties in 2019.

This contact has translated to a .348 wOBA and .255 ISO since the start of last season, giving him a ton of upside in this spot.

Jordan Luplow, OF, Cleveland Indians ($3,000)

As -128 favorites in a game with an 11-run over/under, the Cleveland Indians offense is easy to like against Texas Rangers southpaw Joe Palumbo tonight.

Palumbo is totally unproven, with his longest stint above even the Single-A level being 11 Double-A games this year. He was fine in that sample and did show some nice upside with a 30.8% strikeout rate, but he also posted an 11.2% walk rate with only a solid but unexciting 3.80 xFIP. Jumping straight up to the major league level, it's no surprise that he was blasted for 4 earned runs in 4 innings in his debut.

Jordan Luplow has only given us a 146 plate appearance sample against southpaws in the majors, so we can't put blind faith in these numbers, but he's raked to the tune of a .377 wOBA and .326 ISO in the split. Considering he's notched 43.5% hard-hits and 39.1% fly-balls in the split in 2019 (75 plate appearances), even if regression hits his production we shouldn't expect it to fall off by too much.

With the quality matchup he draws tonight, there's even less concern about potential regression than we'd usually have to factor in as well.


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.