MLB Sim Sports Picks for 5/31/20 on FanDuel
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FanDuel's MLB Sims Sports, a new free-to-play format that simulates the baseball games that were originally scheduled for play each day. Starting pitchers and batting orders are announced in advance, and then games will play out through numberFire's custom simulator.
Starting pitchers will have a simulated pitch count that we won't know beforehand but should be roughly based on their performance last season. Hitters will play the whole game, so there's no fear of pinch hitters and the like.
Best of all, the simulation is meant to replicate real life, so all the usual things you typically analyze in MLB DFS -- things like player skills, matchups, park factors, and platoon splits -- are in play here, so you can approach this in much the same way you would on a real baseball slate.
Here's the breakdown for today's main slate, which starts at 8:02 p.m. EST.
Dinelson Lamet ($10,200) gets a home date with the Miami Marlins and should sit atop your pitcher wishlist. Against righties in 2019, Miami recorded the second-worst wOBA (.288) and eighth-highest strikeout rate (24.9%). Miami may not be quite as bad offensively this season, but they should still be an offense we can attack. Lamet had a 33.6% strikeout rate and 14.0% swinging-strike rate in 73 innings last season. He owns a 30.6% strikeout rate over 187 1/3 career frames.
After Lamet, you can poke holes in just about every other pitcher going today. Miles Mikolas ($7,700) and Sean Manaea ($7,500) are two guys I can stomach, though both have warts. Mikolas is on the road to take on the Pittsburgh Pirates while Manaea is pitching at the Texas Rangers.
Mikolas doesn't have much upside as a guy with an 18.9% strikeout rate last season who is taking on a Bucs team that stuck out just 18.8% of the time -- the second-lowest rate -- versus righties last year. But Mikolas' 47.4% ground-ball rate and 4.2% walk rate should help him post a decent number, and that's something we can't say for many guys on the slate.
Manaea had a 27.5% strikeout rate in 2019, though it came in just 29 2/3 innings and was a big jump up from his 16.5% strikeout rate in 160 2/3 innings in 2018 -- so it's probably not sustainable. The matchup with Texas should help him as the Rangers mustered just a .313 wOBA last year against southpaws while striking out 25.5% of the time, the third-most.
Well, I plugged the Arizona Diamondbacks' offense yesterday, and that didn't go so well. But I'm going right back to them today as they get another cushy home matchup, this time versus lefty Daniel Norris. In 2019, Norris finished with a 4.57 SIERA and 20.5% strikeout rate while allowing a 38.4% hard-hit rate.
Arizona blitzed southpaws for a .349 wOBA last year, and you can stack them on the cheap. Starling Marte ($3,300), Ketel Marte ($3,600), Eduardo Escobar ($2,900), David Peralta ($2,800) and Christian Walker ($2,800) are holding down the first five spots in the lineup. Walker had a .341 wOBA and 41.9% hard-hit rate with the platoon advantage a year ago. Ketel owned lefties to the tune of a .407 wOBA and 40.6% hard-hit rate. You can also peep Carson Kelly, who racked up a gaudy .453 wOBA in the split over a small sample of 104 plate appearances.
Marco Gonzales' 3.99 ERA last year doesn't tell the whole story, and he's a guy we can stack against today in his clash with the Atlanta Braves. The lefty registered a meager 17.0% strikeout rate and 7.9% swinging-strike rate. Atlanta, meanwhile, had a .328 wOBA against lefties.
Ronald Acuna ($4,000), Ozzie Albies ($3,200), Freddie Freeman ($3,700) and Marcell Ozuna ($3,200) are slotted in the one through four spots in the lineup. And don't sleep on Adam Duvall, a lefty killer who has put up a 39.0% hard-hit rate and 50.1% fly-ball rate over 525 career plate appearances in the split.
I also like the Cincinnati Reds today versus Tyler Chatwood at virtual Wrigley. Chatwood has posted a double-digit walk rate in four consecutive seasons, and just once (last year, 22.8%) in that span has his strikeout rate been above 19.0%.
Shogo Akiyama ($2,500) is a cheap leadoff hitter while Joey Votto ($2,900) is slotted second. Eugenio Suarez ($3,500), Mike Moustakas ($3,300), Nick Castellanos ($3,000) and Jesse Winker ($2,300) are hitting 3-4-5-6. Winker is a stellar play at that price after mauling righties for a .371 wOBA and 42.7% hard-hit rate last season.
The author of this article has no involvement with the MLB Sim Sports simulations powered by numberFire and has no knowledge of the results of tonight’s contest.