FanDuel MLB 3-Man Challenge Helper: Wednesday 7/3/19
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?
George Springer - We were deprived of the Coors Field game on Tuesday's 3-Man slate, but tonight we're treated to the matchup between the Houston Astros and Colorado Rockies in all of it's 14-run over/under glory. As favorites, the 'Stros boast an absurd 7.30-run implied total, and it's well worth paying $4 to get Springer in your lineup. Springer's mashed for a .413 wOBA and .308 ISO with career-highs in both hard-hit and fly-ball rate (46.7% and 36.4%), and this same-sided matchup shouldn't scare you off. Colorado Rockies righty Peter Lambert has only a 4.70 SIERA across his five major league starts, and Springer's wOBA is up to .420 against right-handers in 2019.
Nolan Arenado - The presence of this game on the 3-Man slate makes paying up to the $4 slot tough to avoid. Even as underdogs the Rockies' 6.70-run implied total is the second-highest of any team in action today (not just among teams on the 3-Man slate), and Arenado has his usual absurd upside in a home-field matchup against a southpaw, with Wade Miley getting the start for Houston. Arenado at Coors against lefty pitching is one of the more consistently absurd splits you're going to see. In 559 such plate appearances over his career, he's boasting a .486 wOBA and .376 ISO, and those marks jump to .537 and .429, respectively, since 2018.
Michael Brantley - Fading the $4 tier could be an interesting way to differentiate tonight, and Brantley can still bring you some serious upside with the platoon advantage against Lambert here. He's not been a killer from the dish this year, with a .364 wOBA and .178 ISO that you'd usually expect to find in the $2 range, but datibng back to 2018 he does have a .373 wOBA and .191 ISO against right-handed pitching. Lambert is as good a righty matchup as you're going to find as well, and his weak major league SIERA is no surprise after he barely managed an xFIP better than 5.00 in his 60 Triple-A innings in 2019. Paying $3 for Brantley doesn't feel great, but the park and matchup give him a ton of upside, and while peripheral stats are de-emphasized in this format, there's still some benefit to racking up RBI, which shouldn't be hard to do with Houston's massive implied total.
Scott Kingery - On a slate loaded with upside, it's hard to ignore Kingery's projection. Our models have him going for 0.26 home runs tonight, which is tied for the second-most of any hitter on the slate and are the most of any $2 bat. The forecast calls for 88-degree heat with some wind blowing out in Atlanta, and the Braves will be starting righty Bryse Wilson, who has an ugly 5.32 SIERA in his 15 2/3 career major league innings, and who only managed a 4.11 xFIP in 14 starts at the Triple-A level this year. Kingery has been a monster this year, with a .394 wOBA and .267 ISO that you'd usually expect to see priced up at the $3 level, so it's no surprise that he stands out as an elite play down at $2, especially when you factor in the favorable hitting conditions and plus pitching matchup.
Shin-Soo Choo - The Texas Rangers don't draw as soft a pitching matchup as some of the other teams on this slate, but Los Angeles Angels righty Griffin Canning shouldn't scare you away either. His 4.06 SIERA isn't overly scary, and he's sporting a shaky 4.65 xFIP against left-handed bats. Choo's power against righties has made him a mainstay of this article when he's priced at $2 with the platoon advantage, as he boasts a .389 wOBA and .220 ISO across 717 plate appearances against right-handed hurlers dating back to 2018.
Josh Donaldson - On the other side of the Phillies/Braves matchup, Philadelphia is starting righty Nick Pivetta, and Atlanta's sporting a strong 5.55-run implied total. Pivetta has pitched 10 major league games in 2019, struggling to the tune of a 4.77 SIERA while getting smacked for 43.9% hard-hits. Donaldson's not the monster hitter he once was, but he's flexing a .355 wOBA and .223 ISO over 342 plate appearances this year, with a .361 wOBA and .236 ISO in same-sided matchups.
Nomar Mazara - Mazara gets that same solid matchup as Choo, with the platoon advantage against Griffin Canning in 90-degree heat while hitting in the slate's second-most hitter-friendly park. His numbers aren't nearly as impressive as Choo's, but for $1 in a spot this favorable you can do a lot worse than his .344 wOBA, .194 ISO and 51.9% hard-hit rate against right-handed pitching.
Brandon Dixon - The Detroit Tigers versus Chicago White Sox game might go overlooked on this slate, so Dixon's upside is likely to include some low ownership, helping differentiate your lineup on what promises to be a pretty chalky night. Our models have him going for 0.20 home runs, which is only slightly behind Donaldson's 0.24 for the most at $1, and his .235 ISO this season is backed up by a terrific 44.0% hard-hit and 45.7% fly-ball rate. He brings that power into a matchup with a lefty in Ross Detwiler who has an egregious 5.58 xFIP against right-handed bats dating back to 2014.
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.