FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Saturday 5/1/21
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.
Pitchers to Target
Gallen tops our projections as we peg him to total 36.1 FanDuel points. He gets a home date with the Colorado Rockies, and Gallen has produced a 28.5% strikeout rate since the start of 2020. The Rox hold a 3.46 implied total. Gallen tends to walk a few too many (9.2% walk rate in the aforementioned timeframe), but other than that, there's nothing to dislike about his profile.
May is taking on a Milwaukee Brewers team that strikes out at the third-highest clip (27.2%) and carries a 3.39 implied total into this one. When you couple the Brewers' whiff-happy ways with May's 37.2% strikeout rate and 14.1% swinging-strike rate through his first 21 1/3 frames this season, you get a crap ton of upside. May has gone 92 and 93 pitches in his last two starts, so as long as he's efficient, the quality-start bonus is in play, too.
Snell has pretty much been the same Snell -- the strikeouts are there (33.0% rate) but so is the inefficiency (12.8% walk rate). The lefty has topped 87 pitches only once this season, going 95 two starts ago, and he hasn't completed more than 5 1/3 innings in a game. Despite a dope home matchup with the San Francisco Giants, Snell is a GPP-only option for me due to his volatility. He could smash, though, if he's on.
Speaking of tourney plays, Brandon Woodruff ($9,200) is just that tonight as a date with the Los Angeles Dodgers should keep him off the radar for most people. It is a brutal matchup, but Woodruff is a big-time pitcher, sporting a 3.08 SIERA and 31.5% strikeout rate this year. He racked up 46.0 FanDuel points versus a stout San Diego Padres lineup earlier this season.
Stacks to Target
The Atlanta Braves are going to be the chalk stack of the night as they take on Travis Bergen in hitter-haven Dunedin, Florida. The left-handed Bergen has just 29 MLB innings to his name, and he's permitted a 53.3% hard-hit rate and 41.3% fly-ball rate. Atlanta boasts a gaudy 5.87 implied total.
Freddie Freeman ($4,100) is our model's top bat despite the lefty-lefty matchup. He had a 45.0% hard-hit rate in the split last season. Marcell Ozuna ($3,300) and Ronald Acuna ($4,300) are also top-five sticks by our projections, and both will have the platoon advantage. Ozuna is the best point-per-dollar play among those with a salary above $3,000.
Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox bring a 4.76 implied total into their matchup with righty Jordan Lyles. Since the start of 2020, Lyles has struggled to a 5.33 SIERA and 15.0% strikeout rate. Both lefties (.350 wOBA) and righties (.363) beat up on him last season, so all the Red Sox are in play.
Coming off a two-jack night, J.D. Martinez ($4,200) will be on everyone's radar, which isn't fun, but our algorithm slots him in as the slate's number-two hitter. Xander Bogaerts ($3,300) and Enrique Hernandez ($2,700) are also top-10 bats, and they're easy to like at their salaries. They have the third- and fifth-best homer projections.
Speaking of homer projections, Bobby Dalbec ($2,100) has the best dinger projection for anyone with a salary under $2,500. Alex Verdugo ($3,200) and Rafael Devers ($3,700) should both be in meaty spots in the lineup and will have the platoon advantage.
Arizona has been handed a 4.54 implied total. Despite this being only a six-game slate, we have five teams with an implied total of at least 4.5 runs (as of early Saturday afternoon). So I may not use Arizona for a lot of four-man stacks, but I like the idea of sprinkling in a couple two- and three-man D-Backs stacks.
Carson Kelly ($3,700) hit leadoff the last time Arizona saw a lefty. Switch-hitters Asdrubal Cabrera ($2,800) and Eduardo Escobar ($3,400) hit in the three and four holes, respectively, in that game while Wyatt Mathisen ($2,200) was slotted fifth. Escobar posted a .362 wOBA, 47.5% hard-hit rate and 44.9% fly-ball rate against lefties in 2019. He's the top hitter D-Backs today, per our projections.