3 Under-the-Radar MLB FanDuel Plays for Friday 5/28/21
When being contrarian in daily fantasy sports, there's a fine line between taking a calculated risk and being reckless. But differentiating your lineups from everyone else's is the name of the game if you plan on taking down one of those highly lucrative DFS tournaments. Whether it's because of bookmaker totals, other options at a given position, or some gem you've found who everyone is overlooking, we can always find potential under-rostered plays if we look hard enough.
Here are three such players to consider branching out for on FanDuel's main slate.
Hyun-jin Ryu, SP, Blue Jays ($9,600)
This isn't a night to get cute at pitcher as we have two studs -- Gerrit Cole ($12,200) and Walker Buehler ($11,000) -- in nice matchups. Cole is taking on the Detroit Tigers, and he's going to be very popular. Buehler is at home versus the San Francisco Giants, and he'll be a go-to option, as well, especially if rain is an issue for Cole, which is a possibility.
Hyun-jin Ryu is going to see a low draft percentage, and he makes some sense if you're dead set on fading Cole and Buehler. If you're doing that, you need someone who can deliver upside, and Ryu can do it in a date with the Cleveland Indians -- although rain could be a problem for that game, too.
The Toronto Blue Jays' lefty holds a 3.24 SIERA, 24.6% strikeout rate and 2.8% walk rate. He's got five outings with at least 39.0 FanDuel points, including spike games of 52.0 and 51.1. He could go off today in this matchup.
Cleveland is just 24th in wOBA (.294), and they're 25th in wOBA versus lefties (.296). The Tribe will be sans Franmil Reyes, one of their best right-handed bats.
In all, assuming Cole and Buehler don't run into issues with rain, I probably won't have much Ryu tonight. But he could have a big day against Cleveland, so if you want an under-the-radar hurler, he's a fine pick.
Tommy Pham, OF, Padres ($2,800)
The San Diego Padres have just a 4.17 implied total versus lefty Framber Valdez. They're not going to be a popular stacking option, and if people do go to the Padres, it'll likely be for Fernando Tatis Jr. ($4,500), who is the slate's number-three bat, per our model.
Don't sleep on Tommy Pham, though.
After a painfully slow start, Pham is coming on. He's got a .345 wOBA in May after a .247 wOBA in April. For the season, there is a big gap in his wOBA (.298) and expected wOBA (.357), per Statcast.
Pham also has a good track record versus southpaws, putting up a .410 wOBA and 47.8% hard-hit rate in the split in 2020. He's hitting leadoff lately, as well.
Alex Dickerson, OF, Giants ($2,100)
Walker Buehler is a really good pitcher, and you can make a strong case for using him tonight in his matchup with the San Francisco Giants. But I'll have a ton of Gerrit Cole, and that opens the door for me to take a look at San Fran for one-off plays.
Enter Alex Dickerson.
Dickerson is scuffling this season, but just a year ago, he mauled right-handed hurlers to the tune of a .395 wOBA, 40.0% hard-hit rate and 40.9% fly-ball rate.
Buehler has had some long-ball issues in 2021, allowing a 36.4% hard-hit rate and 1.23 homers per nine innings. Against lefties, his strikeout rate is only 23.1% -- compared to 29.7% versus righties -- and he's permitting 1.42 taters per nine.
I like Dickerson as a low-salary dart throw at a homer, and he definitely won't be in many lineups. Plus, his salary pairs well with Cole.