3 Under-the-Radar MLB FanDuel Plays for 7/25/19
When being contrarian in daily fantasy sports, there's a fine line between taking a calculated risk and being reckless. But differentiating your lineups from everyone else is the name of the game if you plan on taking down one of those highly lucrative DFS tournaments. Whether it's because of Vegas totals, other options at a given position, or some gem you've found that everyone is overlooking, we can always find potential under-owned plays if we look hard enough.
Here are three such players to consider branching out for on FanDuel's main slate.
Jose Suarez, P, Los Angeles Angels
FanDuel Price: $6,200
The Baltimore Orioles are one of the worst teams in the entire league, but does that mean we can pick on them with any pitcher?
Jose Suarez will be on the mound tonight for the Los Angeles Angels, and he comes in with only 32.2 innings pitched in his major league career, all this season. The young pitcher has shown a bit of promise for the Halos, but also a few things he needs to work on. While his 25.2% strikeout rate is solid, allowing 10 home runs in those 32 innings isn't. He's young and has some things to iron out, but tonight he gets a chance to do so against an Orioles team that comes in with a 26.5% strikeout rate versus lefty pitchers, the third-worst in the league.
Suarez has seven starts under his belt this season and has allowed three or fewer earned runs in six of those seven. That level of production is certainly on the table tonight versus this Orioles lineup, who carry a .156 team ISO versus lefty pitchers (23rd in the league). Suarez is super cheap tonight and can help open up the rest of your lineup for big-name hitters.
Jorge Soler, OF, Kansas City Royals
FanDuel Price: $3,500
A solid implied total for the Royals have them fifth overall, but the four teams ahead of them have much better offenses, which should cause Kansas City to go under-owned. But they shouldn't in a great matchup versus Adam Plutko, who is allowing 3.38 homers per nine innings to right-handed hitters off a 50.0% fly-ball rate and a 39.5% hard-contact rate. None of that is good, and when we see a hitter like Jorge Soler on the other side, we want to target him.
So far this season, Soler ranks in the 84th percentile or higher for average exit velocity, hard-hit percentage, xwOBA, and xSLG, according to Baseball Savant. If you look at his split specific numbers, he has a .296 ISO, 42.8% hard-hit rate, and a 29.3% home-run-to-fly-ball rate versus right-handed pitching this season. Plenty of power and fly balls are being generated by Soler, and he's up against a pitcher who is getting crushed by righty hitters.
Nicholas Castellanos, OF, Detroit Tigers
FanDuel Price: $3,300
As the trade deadline approaches, it appears Castellanos' days are numbered in Detroit, as he is the talk of several rumors. He might want to go out with a "bang," figuratively speaking, and post a few more big games prior to being traded.
He is in a position to do that tonight facing off against Wade LeBlanc, who is projected to start for the Seattle Mariners tonight. The veteran LeBlanc is carrying a 5.45 xFIP and allowing 1.71 homers per nine innings to righty hitters this season -- which get even worse at home -- jumping to a 6.32 xFIP and 2.08 homer per nine innings. T-Mobile Park, despite being a "pitcher's park," has not been friendly to LeBlanc this season.
Castellanos has plenty of power versus left-handed pitchers, which is part of the reason he is a big trade target. He comes in with a .461 wOBA, .302 ISO, and a 54.6% hard-hit rate this season against lefties. The power has always been there for Castellanos and even with this being a pitcher's park, LeBlanc struggles significantly versus righty hitters at home, so load up on Castellanos tonight.