FanDuel Pitching Primer: Thursday 8/20/20

There's some big-name arms available on tonight's main slate. Who looks primed for success?

In daily fantasy baseball, success starts with nailing the starting pitcher spot in your lineup.

When compared to hitters, pitching performance tends to be much more predictable and stable throughout the course of the season. You know what you're getting from a top-level ace when you roster him: probably a dominant effort with only one or two implosions per season. In contrast, even the game's best hitters have days at the plate when they go 0-for-4.

As a result, lineup construction should begin with the starting pitcher. Which pitchers should you consider on today's main slate?

High-Priced Option

Shane Bieber, Cleveland Indians

At Pittsburgh Pirates

FanDuel Price: $12,000

Yes, I am a #Belieber.

Tonight, one of the best pitchers in baseball, Shane Bieber, takes the bump for the Cleveland Indians, and boy has he been sensational this season.

In 2020, Bieber has upped the ante with a 42.9% strikeout rate, all while maintaining an elite walk rate of only 4.8%. He's also limited hard contact to a robust 36.9% rate.

The Pittsburgh Pirates, Bieber's opponent, are dreadful -- they have a league-worst .268 wOBA, and they whiff at a 23.7% clip. Pony up for Bieber.

Mid-Priced Play

Brandon Woodruff, Milwaukee Brewers

At Minnesota Twins

FanDuel Price: $8,100

Is taking on the juggernaut Minnesota Twins lineup really advisable? I think so, fam.

We know that this offense can score runs in bunches, but a gander at their .312 team wOBA mark means we can attack this team -- and their 23.8% strikeout rate ain't too shabby, either.

Also, we focus on the fact that the Milwaukee Brewers overall have a poor rotation, but Brandon Woodruff is a legit #1 on any staff. He's rocking a 29.1% strikeout rate, 55.4% ground-ball rate, and a silly 12.0% swinging-strike rate.

Fire Woodruff in, and you should have a monster play.

Low-Priced Option

Kevin Gausman, San Francisco Giants

Vs. Los Angeles Angels

FanDuel Price: $7,700

We have affectionately referred to Kevin Gausman of the San Francisco Giants in the past because he is usually getting lit up like a Christmas tree with rockets. But this year?

Don't let the cat out of the bag, but Gausman has been pretty damn impressive. He's sporting a 31.8% strikeout rate (say what?), 4.8% walk rate, and 14.5% swinging-strike rate.

Now, the top of the Los Angeles Angels lineup is absolutely no set of slouches, and they whiff only at a 22.0% mark. But, they are only 18th-best in team wOBA (.313), and for a pretty cheap option, Gausman is your guy.

Matt Kupferle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Matt Kupferle also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username MKupferle. 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 of FanDuel.