FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Saturday 8/8/20
The beauty of daily fantasy baseball is that the top targets are different each and every day. Whether it's the right-handed catcher who destroys left-handed pitching or the mid-range hurler facing a depleted lineup, you're not going to find yourself using the same assets time after time.
While this breaks up the monotony, it can make it hard to decide which players are primed to succeed on a given day. We can help bridge that gap.
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.
If you need help getting started on that trek, here are some of the top options on the board today. We'll be focusing exclusively on the main slate, which starts at 7:05 p.m. EST.
Pitchers to Target
It's a two-man top tier tonight on the bump -- Clayton Kershaw ($10,600 on FanDuel) and Chris Paddack ($9,100). Our model gives Kershaw the slight edge over Paddack (36.8 to 35.6). But it's close, and once you factor in the gap in salary, Paddack nicks it for me.
Paddack is at home against the Arizona Diamondbacks, an offense that owns an ugly .276 wOBA so far this season. The San Diego Padres are -162 favorites, and the D-Backs' 3.38 implied total is the second-lowest clip on the slate. Paddack has thrown 88 and 89 pitches in his last two starts, and he can torch this lineup today.
Kershaw could go under-owned a bit if the masses go with Paddack, but this is an unquestionably smash spot for the future Hall of Famer. Kershaw was fantastic in his debut, fanning six in 5 2/3 scoreless frames. He tossed 81 pitches in that one and should be in for a similar workload today. The matchup versus the San Francisco Giants is a pristine one. San Fran has a slate-low 2.99 implied total, and the Los Angeles Dodgers are massive -320 favorites.
I don't see much of a reason to venture elsewhere at pitcher today, but among the rest of the hurlers, David Peterson ($8,300) is my favorite option. While Peterson has seen his price jump by nearly $3,000 since his debut two outings ago, that means he's been good. He boasts a 23.4% strikeout rate and 3.75 SIERA through 11 2/3 frames this year, and the 2017 first-round pick had nice minor league numbers, too. He went for 87 pitches last time out, and the Miami Marlins are a friendly matchup. But the rookie doesn't have the ceiling of Kershaw or Paddack.
Stacks to Target
As of early Saturday morning, the top implied team total (5.20) belongs to the Minnesota Twins, who are up against lefty Danny Duffy. The first place your mind should've went to is Nelson Cruz ($4,200), a dude who had a .464 wOBA, 56.8% hard-hit rate and 45.5% fly-ball rate with the platoon advantage in 2019. Even at his lofy salary, Cruz should push to be the highest-owned bat on this slate.
The Twins have other appealing right-handed sticks. Mitch Garver ($2,400) hit leadoff the last time they faced a lefty, and Miguel Sano ($3,200) was in the clean-up spot. Sano slugged his way to a .408 wOBA and 54.4% hard-hit rate against southpaws last year. Switch-hitters Marwin Gonzalez ($2,500) and Jorge Polanco ($3,000) will also hit from the right side today. We can go with Max Kepler ($3,700), too, even in a lefty-lefty matchup. He had a .367 wOBA in the split last year, though his salary isn't too welcoming.
Los Angeles Dodgers
You know the drill with the Dodgers against righties -- Max Muncy ($3,700), Cody Bellinger ($4,300), Corey Seager ($3,700) and Joc Pederson ($3,200) are left-handed bats we want to zero in on. Pederson hit leadoff yesterday, which is a big bump to his value, though he's always at risk of being removed for a pinch-hitter if he's due up against a left-hander.
Anthony DeSclafani isn't a bad pitcher, but he gives up plenty of hard contact, getting tagged for hard-hit rates of 41.9% and 40.5% the last two seasons. I like the Milwaukee Brewers as a sneaky-good stacking option, and given how bad Milwaukee has been early on -- .294 wOBA and 28.7% strikeout rate -- they shouldn't see much ownership.
Lefties need to be the core of any Brewers stacks as DeSclafani gave up a 44.8% hard-hit rate and 48.5% to them in 2019.
Christian Yelich ($4,100) has some concerning numbers so far, but it's been just 47 plate appearances. This is a guy who mashed his way to wOBAs of .422 and .442 the previous two campaigns. This is a chance to get him when he might be under-owned.
The rest of the Brew Crew is pretty cheap, making them an ideal stack to pair with Kershaw/Paddack and one of the Twins or Dodgers.
Lefties Brock Holt ($2,100), Logan Morrison ($2,100), Justin Smoak ($2,500) and Ben Gamel ($2,600) made up four of the Brewers' top five in their Friday lineup against a righty. Fellow lefty Eric Sogard ($2,400) might be atop the order today after Friday's day off, and Keston Hiura ($3,300) owns a .403 wOBA in righty-righty matchups in his brief career.