FanDuel Pitching Primer: Monday 5/3/21

Kenta Maeda has had a rough start to 2021. Can we expect more from him on Monday?

Just like in other sports, the focal point of your daily fantasy baseball lineups will be your high-salary studs. These guys take up by far the biggest chunk of your cap space, but they also offer the highest ceiling. And in the case of pitchers, the high-salary options typically come with the highest floors, too.

For hitters, we're looking for guys with big numbers, strong matchups, and with players around them that are likely to produce well, too, increasing our chances for runs and RBI. For pitchers, we want big strikeout numbers, while the ability to go deep in a game and pick up a win is also valuable.

With your high-salary picks playing such a big role in your lineup, you need to be right on these guys, so let's take a look at a few top-end options you can count on to anchor your lineup today.

High-Salaried Play

Walker Buehler, Los Angeles Dodgers

At Chicago Cubs
FanDuel Salary: $10,200

With two aces with salaried above $10,000 today on the main slate, we get to choose between Tyler Glasnow ($10,800) and Walker Buehler of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

For my money, and the tiny bit of salary savings, Buehler seems like the right way to go. He faces a poorer offense in the Chicago Cubs, who rank fourth-worst with a 27.6% strikeout rate compared to Glasnow's matchup with the Los Angeles Angels (22.1%). The Angels' .322 wOBA mark far outpaces the .302 mark for the Cubs, too.

Glasnow is projected for a massive night, but Buehler gets the nod for me. Our algorithm projects Buehler for 32.3 FanDuel points, giving him a solid 3.2X value.

Mid-Salaried Play

Adam Wainwright, St. Louis Cardinals

Vs. New York Mets
FanDuel Salary: $7,200

Despite living in St. Louis, I really didn't expect a whole lot from Adam Wainwright in his age-40 season. I've definitely been proven wrong so far.

He's popped for 30-plus FanDuel points in three of his last four outings, and his opponent tonight is the porous New York Mets offense, who couldn't hit their way out of a wet paper bag. The Mets have logged a .300 wOBA and 23.9% strikeout rate so far in 2021.

Keep a close eye on this situation -- Wainwright is expected to pitch tonight after missing this weekend due to a family member testing positive due to COVID-19.

Low-Salaried Play

Kenta Maeda, Minnesota Twins

Vs. Texas Rangers
FanDuel Salary: $6,900

Alright fam, let me have it. I know that I am a Kenta Maeda stan, and he has stunk.

Maeda, who I had sugarplum visions of continuing his ace status, has been horrific this season. In 23 and 1/3 innings pitched, he's posted a 6.17 ERA and 1.78 WHIP. Why? Absolutely zero command of that juicy slider, and he's getting pounded as a result of it.

Here's some reasons to believe -- the Texas Rangers stink offensively, ranking second-worst with a 28.9% strikeout rate, and their team wOBA mark of .299 ain't brilliant, either.

Expect Maeda to turn the ship around tonight.

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.