3 MLB FanDuel Studs to Target on 7/19/19
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.
Hyun-Jin Ryu, P, Los Angeles Dodgers ($10,500)
After a couple of slates with shaky pitching options earlier this week, Friday greets us with seven arms priced north of $9,000.
Even in that loaded group, Hyun-jin Ryu and the Los Angeles Dodgers stand out with some incredibly favorable betting odds. Their -300 moneyline makes them the biggest favorites on the slate, implied for a 75.0% chance of winning this game, and the Miami Marlins are implied for 0.43 fewer runs (2.86) than anyone else.
To the Marlins' credit, they've managed to limit strikeouts to an impressive 20.7% against southpaws in 2019, but their 78 wRC+ in the split is still good for only 28th in the majors.
Ryu hasn't been as absurdly good this season as his 1.78 ERA might suggest, but that's still backed up by a terrific 3.50 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA), which comes after he posted a 3.18 SIERA in 2018. His swinging-strike rate is up to a career-best 11.9%, also giving him some nice upside even against the well-disciplined bats in Miami.
There are absolutely other routes you can go in the stud pitcher spot tonight -- Justin Verlander and his 31.5% strikeout rate against a powerful but strikeout-happy Texas Rangers squad, for example -- but Ryu offers a ton of safety against Miami without sacrificing too much in the way of upside.
Aaron Judge, OF, New York Yankees ($4,500)
The New York Yankees' matchup with the Colorado Rockies may not be going down at Coors Field, but Yankee Stadium is still the second-most hitter-friendly park on tonight's slate, and the Yanks' 6.49-run implied total is the slate's highest by a big margin.
Colorado's pitchers are always going to have some rocky numbers at home, but Kyle Freeland has also struggled on the road in his young career. Across his first three major league seasons, the southpaw has a 4.80 xFIP on the road, and in 2019 he's faring far worse than that, with a 5.12 mark.
Aaron Judge is unquestionably one of the most dangerous hitters in the majors, and even by his standards he's been hitting the ball incredibly well in 2019. His average exit velocity is up to a career-best 97.7 miles per hour, which is on pace to be the highest mark in a season for any hitter with at least 50 batted balls since 2017. The two next-highest marks also both belong to Judge, at 94.8 and 94.7 miles per hour.
Judge doesn't need the platoon advantage to rake, but it certainly doesn't hurt much. He's cracked lefties for a career .398 wOBA and .259 ISO, and he should have no trouble beating up on Freeland in his hitter-friendly home digs tonight.
J.D. Martinez, OF, Boston Red Sox ($4,000)
Another guy with absurd power who doesn't need the platoon advantage, J.D. Martinez has posted some downright silly numbers when he has drawn matchups with southpaws in recent years.
Dating back to 2017, he's turned in a 48.5% hard-hit rate, 9.7% soft-hit rate and 41.4% fly-ball rate over 343 plate appearances in the split, and that has translated to a massive .462 wOBA and .365 ISO. His production is down some in 2019, but he's still exploded for a .473 wOBA and .388 ISO in his 88 plate appearances against southpaws.
Today, he's up against a particularly weak lefty in Baltimore's John Means. Means has struggled to the tune of a 4.69 SIERA across 88 2/3 innings this season, with a particularly egregious 5.52 xFIP against right-handed hitters.
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.