DraftKings Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 8/28/19

Nelson Cruz has smashed left-handed pitching this season and has an elite matchup against Ross Detwiler.

Every day is unique for daily fantasy baseball, which is both a blessing and a challenge. Although we can’t simply plug and play our favorite studs day in and day out, each slate presents us with a chance for a new gem to vault us up the leaderboards.

Through the use of numberFire’s tools, we can better identify the players primed to succeed each day, making the process of filling out a lineup just that much easier. In addition to our custom optimal lineups, you can check out our batting and pitching heat maps, which show the pieces in the best spot to succeed on that slate. Put on the finishing touches with our games and lineups page to see who's hitting where and what the weather looks like, and you'll have yourself a snazzy looking team to put up some big point totals.

Which names stand out for today on the DraftKings main slate? Let’s check it out, starting with the pitchers.

Pitchers to Target

High-Priced Pitcher

Max Scherzer ($11,000 on DraftKings): This was a toss-up between Gerrit Cole and Max Scherzer, but ultimately decided to go with Mad Max. He's put up an incredible 34.8 percent strikeout rate along with a 2.94 SIERA. This has come with a bit of an inflated BABIP at .320. Scherzer also sports a slate-best 4.7 percent walk rate which just adds to the elite stats he has compiled this season. He'll take on a Baltimore Orioles team that has a 22.7 percent strikeout rate against right-handed pitching which is the 14th-most in the Majors in addition to a .303 wOBA which sits way down at 25th overall.

Value Pitcher

Kenta Maeda ($8,000): Kenta Maeda puts up fantastic numbers when he's pitching, but he hasn't thrown more than 100 pitches since July 6th and only gone more than five innings three times in that span. He has a very good 26.8 percent strikeout rate as well as a respectable 4.10 SIERA but a .253 BABIP has been favorable. His matchup against the San Diego Padres is fantastic in that they have the second-highest strikeout rate against right-handed pitchers — striking out at a 26.6 percent clip.

Aaron Civale ($7,000): This is about as good of a matchup as one can have as a right-handed pitcher. Aaron Civale is set to take on the strikeout-heavy Detroit Tigers. They are leading the league against right-handed pitchers — not in a good way — with a 26.9 percent strikeout rate. In addition, their .285 wOBA is tied for the worst in the Majors with the Miami Marlins. These terrible numbers make up for Civale's mediocre 21.7 percent strikeout rate and modest 4.38 SIERA, but the matchup is just too good to ignore.

Hitters to Target

High-Priced Hitters

Nelson Cruz ($5,500): The power numbers that Nelson Cruz has brought to the plate against left-handed pitching in 2019 are incredible. He's absolutely mashing southpaws to the tune of a .451 wOBA and unfathomable .489 ISO. This evening is a fantastic matchup for him, too, as he takes on Chicago White Sox' Ross Detwiler — a pitcher who, in a limited 47.1 innings, has given up a 36.1 percent hard-hit rate, 32.1 percent fly-ball rate and an absolutely brutal 30.0 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate.

Xander Bogaerts ($5,500): Heading to Coors Field, the Boston Red Sox put up double digits last night scoring 10 runs against the Colorado Rockies. They have another fantastic matchup against right-hander Peter Lambert. He's giving up a 37.8 percent hard-hit rate and a 24.3 percent line-drive rate which doesn't bode well here. In addition, his 1.79 HR/9 adds to the many holes in his game. Xander Bogaerts brings an incredible .404 wOBA and .250 ISO to the best hitting environment in baseball.

Shohei Ohtani ($4,900): Continuing his DH-only ways, Shohei Ohtani has been smashing right-handed pitching. On the season, he's put up a .363 wOBA and .227 ISO, numbers that are great as-is. However, since June 1st, Ohtani has been even better putting up a .390 wOBA and .251 ISO as he came out of the gate rather sluggish off of Tommy John surgery. The Texas Rangers will be rolling out Ariel Jurado as their primary pitcher tonight and boy has he struggled. He's giving up a horrendous 43.9 percent hard-hit rate while putting together a measly 15.6 percent strikeout rate and 5.06 SIERA.

Value Hitters

Ian Desmond ($4,000): On the other side of the Coors matchup, we have a pretty cheap Ian Desmond. While he doesn't light the world on fire, he has been fantastic against left-handed pitching this season. With a .390 wOBA and .306 ISO, he comes in at a pretty solid discount compared to his teammates. This isn't the easiest matchup as he takes on Eduardo Rodriguez, a pitcher that is pretty solid all around. His 8.7 percent walk rate would be something that stands out and he's giving up a 14.9 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate, but with just a 29.5 percent hard-hit rate and 32.7 percent fly-ball rate, it may not be a huge issue.

Jason Kipnis ($3,700): Jason Kipnis is probably a player I have rostered exactly zero times this season, including in Cleveland Indians stacks. But, here we are, he's a pretty cheap price with a terrific matchup against the terrible Jordan Zimmermann. Kipnis does not bring too much power to the play, but a .324 wOBA and .198 ISO isn't awful in this matchup. Zimmermann is giving up a 41.5 percent hard-hit rate and 24.4 percent line-drive rate which comes with a 5.03 SIERA.

Jorge Alfaro ($3,600): This is a relatively cheap price for a catcher that could be used as an acceptable one-off tonight. Jorge Alfaro's season-long numbers aren't great, but since August 1st he has been pretty good against right-handed pitching. He's put up a .371 wOBA and .192 ISO which is definitely solid for a catcher. Now, he's hitting in Marlins Park tonight so the power probably doesn't make a huge difference in such a large park, but the matchup is at least intriguing. Anthony DeSclafani is giving up a 40.6 percent hard-hit rate and 39.9 percent fly-ball rate which has resulted in a 16.9 percent home-run-to-fly-ball rate.

Ryan Sheppard is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Ryan Sheppard also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username donkshow_. 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