FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 9/9/20

The Mets were a dud yesterday but should be in line for a strong night at the plate against Jorge Lopez.

Our daily helper is available every day to analyze FanDuel's main slate and help give you a starting point when you're building lineups. Be sure to also incorporate our great tools into your research process. Whether you're looking for daily projections, the latest starting lineups and weather, or batting and pitching heat maps to find the best matchups -- we've got you covered!

And don't forget to take a listen to The Solo Shot podcast with Jim Sannes, who breaks down the MLB daily fantasy slate each morning.

On that note, let's highlight some of the top options for today's FanDuel main slate. Below are tonight's projected starters with their 2020 stats. Opposing team strikeout rate and wRC+ date now show this year's splits against a given pitcher's handedness using up-to-date active rosters, per FanGraphs.

Pitcher Salary L/R Opp. SIERA K% BB% Opp. K% Opp. wRC+
Yu Darvish $11,500 R CIN 2.93 33.0% 4.2% 24.3% 102
Clayton Kershaw $11,000 L @ARI 2.85 30.6% 4.5% 22.5% 56
Trevor Bauer $10,800 R @CHC 3.08 35.9% 7.7% 25.3% 104
Zach Davies $9,000 R COL 4.37 22.6% 7.0% 22.9% 76
Pablo Lopez $8,000 R @ATL 3.48 23.6% 5.6% 24.0% 125
Dane Dunning $7,700 R @PIT 3.75 30.5% 10.2% 25.3% 67
Jesus Luzardo $7,700 L HOU 4.06 23.5% 8.0% 18.1% 125
Antonio Senzatela $7,400 R @SDP 4.52 15.7% 3.5% 21.0% 137
Nick Margevicius $7,200 L @SFG 4.05 22.6% 4.9% 20.1% 133
Tommy Milone $7,100 L MIA 3.98 22.4% 2.5% 24.2% 90
Rick Porcello $6,900 R BAL 4.60 19.5% 5.9% 22.6% 106
JT Brubaker $6,800 R CWS 4.39 24.3% 9.9% 25.6% 106
Taylor Clarke $6,400 R LOS 4.65 23.9% 13.3% 19.9% 128
Tyler Anderson $6,300 L SEA 5.82 14.9% 9.1% 25.7% 67
Luis Garcia $6,000 R @OAK 6.49 12.5% 18.8% 23.9% 110
Jorge Lopez $6,000 R @NYM 4.94 15.3% 8.2% 22.1% 118
Julio Teheran $5,700 R @TEX 5.89 12.8% 9.8% 22.0% 69
Kyle Cody $5,600 R LAA 4.96 29.6% 18.5% 21.1% 116

Let's check out the top spots on tonight's main slate.


We have another deep pitching slate on our hands, with a "big three" between Yu Darvish ($11,500), Clayton Kershaw ($11,000), and Trevor Bauer ($10,800).

Darvish is a numberFire favorite, and he hasn't disappointed one bit in 2020, ranking third overall in both SIERA and strikeout-minus-walk rate. Tonight's conditions at Wrigley are once again favorable, too, as we're expecting strong winds blowing in and temperatures are in the 60s. The Reds are a plus matchup for strikeouts and have a slate-low 2.93 implied total. It all lines up for another top-notch performance for Darvish.

Of course, Bauer benefits from the pitcher-friendly weather, as well, and his 35.9% strikeout rate bests everyone on the slate including Darvish. If we're nitpicking, Bauer has the higher walk rate and has been the less consistent of the two lately, but both should contend for the highest score of the night. Darvish still ultimately gets the nod, but Bauer is very much in play for tournaments, particularly for the lower salary.

Kershaw continues to also enjoy a brilliant 2020 campaign, but a slightly lower strikeout rate and workload arguably puts him behind Darvish and Bauer. While the other two regularly top 100 pitches, Kershaw has yet to do so even once in six starts, regularly being held in the 80s or 90s. The Diamondbacks have been terrible at the plate, though, so you should still have some exposure to Kershaw, who can still rack up the points with efficient outings.

Beyond that trio, Dane Dunning ($7,700) jumps out as a pay-down option against the Pirates. Dunning is coming off an underwhelming result against the Royals, but that 30.5% strikeout rate after three starts still grabs our attention, and the opponent doesn't get much better than Pittsburgh. The workload is the biggest hurdle for the young righty to overcome, but he did jump up to 88 pitches last time, giving us hope that he can finally log over five innings, something he hasn't achieved yet.


Los Angeles Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers make the list again today, entering with the slate's highest implied total (5.52) against Taylor Clarke.

Although Clarke has a solid 23.9% strikeout rate, it's rather suspect considering his pedestrian 8.2% swinging-strike rate, and he only managed an 18.4% strikeout rate in 2019. His 13.3% walk rate should lead to extra baserunners for the Dodgers, and we know how capable they are of cashing in. A 53.5% ground-ball rate has helped Clarke avoid damage, but that might be less effective against a Los Angeles' lineup littered with fly-ball hitters.

Clarke is also getting far fewer punchouts against lefties this year (19.2%), so top sluggers like Cody Bellinger ($4,100), Corey Seager ($4,000), and Max Muncy ($3,600) should have an advantage. Gavin Lux ($2,400) and Edwin Rios ($2,200) are lefties who offer salary relief lower in the order.

New York Mets

The New York Mets were a bust yesterday, but they should make things right against right-hander Jorge Lopez.

Dating back to 2019, he's oddly done a better job of getting punchouts against left-handed batters (20.3%), but it's come at the expense of worse contact, as he's also given up a 42.2% hard-hit rate and 42.3% ground-ball rate.

The Mets' army of lefty sluggers should be able to pounce between Brandon Nimmo ($2,900), Michael Conforto ($3,200), Dominic Smith ($3,400), and Robinson Cano ($3,300).

Lopez is also having a difficult time striking out right-handed batters this season (10.9%), though, so Pete Alonso ($3,700) could have an easier time making contact tonight.

Los Angeles Angels

Kyle Cody amazingly hasn't given up an earned run over his first four appearances (7.1 innings) despite showing a lackluster 4.96 SIERA and 18.5% walk rate. Part of that has been due to an impressive 29.6% strikeout rate and 57.1% ground-ball rate thus far, but he's also lucked out with a .143 BABIP.

It's tough to read too much into such a small sample, but those free passes will come back to haunt Cody at some point, and he's up against a Los Angeles Angels' roster that ranks fifth in strikeout rate against righties (21.1%) and second in walk rate (11.3%). We're also still talking about a pitcher who hadn't even pitched at the Double-A level before this year, so inconsistency is to be expected.

Mike Trout ($4,700) and Anthony Rendon ($4,000) are the obvious choices, and Shohei Ohtani ($2,800) and Justin Upton ($2,700) offer solid power potential despite disappointing this season (although Upton could sit out after being hit by a pitch last night). Ohtani still has a respectable double-digit barrel rate and can also add points on the basepaths (seven stolen bases).

Matt Thaiss ($2,000) comes in at the minimum salary and would be a nice value if he hits second again tonight.

Others to Consider:

The Oakland Athletics are also facing an inexperienced pitcher in Luis Garcia, who is making just his second MLB appearance. Like Cody, he hadn't even pitched in Double-A prior to getting called up this year.

The San Diego Padres are up against a low-strikeout pitcher in Antonio Senzatela. The high ground-ball rate doesn't make Senzatela the best candidate for dingers, but giving up a lot of contact to the Padres is something we're interested in.

The Texas Rangers probably aren't a team to go all-in on with a stack, but you could opt for Joey Gallo ($3,300) as a one-off versus Julio Teheran.