5 Daily Fantasy Baseball Value Plays for 8/5/19

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.

Phillip Ervin, OF, Cincinnati Reds ($2,500)

Any DFS lineup tonight has to have Phillip Ervin in it. At $2,500, he is an absolute steal. Tonight he faces off against left-handed pitcher Patrick Sandoval, who will be following an opener for his MLB debut. Sandoval’s minor league numbers this year were not great, to say the least, with a 5.71 ERA, 1.74 WHIP, and 5.2 walks per nine innings (BB/9).

It’s a small sample, but to say Ervin has performed well against lefties in 2019 would be a significant understatement. His .472/.537/.889 slash line in 41 plate appearances is insane. He has also hit both of his two home runs on the season against left-handed pitchers. For a larger sample, Ervin’s .965 OPS against lefties in 143 plate appearances in his career make him an insane value for tonight’s slate.

Lorenzo Cain ($2,900) and Ryan Braun ($3,100), OF, Milwaukee Brewers

Lorenzo Cain has had a disappointing 2019 with just a .675 OPS in 475 plate appearances. But those numbers have been a bit better of late, with a .764 OPS since July 13th and more encouragingly a 41.5% hard-hit rate in that time, compared to a season-long mark of 35.6%. He’s continued to hit leadoff in front of a great lineup, which is another cause for optimism.

Meanwhile, Ryan Braun has been his typical solid self with an .805 OPS despite waning plate discipline.

Tonight, they face off against Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Dario Agrazal in a matchup that leads itself to me loving a Milwaukee Brewers stack tonight. The implied total today for the Brewers is at 5.12, and I could see that being low given how bad Agrazal has been this year. Agrazal currently has an 18:10 strikeout-to-walk (K:BB) ratio in 37 innings with a 6.35 FIP. He’s surrendered eight home runs in just 37 innings, and I would expect that number to go up a good amount tonight.

With Cain and Braun near the top of the lineup, they both have a chance for a big night.

Michael Chavis, 2B, Boston Red Sox ($3,000)

Against left-handed pitchers this year, Michael Chavis has interesting numbers. His .273 ISO against lefties far outweighs his .170 mark against righties. However, where his power has been better, his contact skills have been far worse as his 35:2 K:BB ratio in 103 plate appearances versus lefties is awful compared to his 86:27 ratio against righties.

So, why is he here then? Well, Chavis gets to go against Mike Montgomery. Montgomery’s season-long 5.4 strikeouts per nine innings (K/9) gives me optimism that Chavis’s strikeout woes against lefties will not bother him tonight. The Boston Red Sox have by far the highest implied run total of the night (5.72), and Chavis at 3,000 should easily outpace that salary.

JD Davis, OF, New York Mets ($2,800)

The regression bug has finally bitten Miami Marlins starter Sandy Alcantara. After significantly outperforming his peripherals over the first three months of the season, Alcantara has a 7.29 ERA in his last six starts. That goes along with a 25:18 K:BB ratio in that time with a jaw-dropping 10 home runs in 33 1/3 innings.

J.D. Davis is the best value in the Mets lineup tonight. With Robinson Cano likely out, Davis should be hitting in the middle of the order. He is red-hot right now with a .998 OPS in his 17 games. He also has a 56% hard-hit rate in that span, and with a good matchup tonight, he could make those numbers look even better.

James Kohout is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, James Kohout also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username jt2115. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.