FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 6/9/21
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.
Gerrit Cole ($11,500) - Cole and Lance Lynn ($10,800) are the only pitchers with salaries in the five figures, and with Lynn facing off against the Toronto Blue Jays, we'll lean towards Cole at the top. The veteran right-hander has made plenty of headlines this week for the wrong reasons, but he can certainly quiet doubters down with a dominant outing against a potent Minnesota Twins lineup. Cole's 36.5% strikeout rate, 3.9% walk rate, and 2.36 SIERA are all tops among the starters on tonight's main slate, and each of them ranks inside the top-three in all of baseball, according to FanGraphs. The 30-year-old has totaled 47-plus FanDuel points in 7 of his 12 outings this season. Minnesota's 23.7% strikeout rate versus righties since the start of May is middle-of-the-pack, so there is a glimmer of hope in the matchup.
Austin Gomber ($9,500) - Gomber's had a solid season, but his peripherals suggest that he might even be underperforming so far in 2021. Through 12 starts and 63.1 innings, the 27-year-old sports a 4.12 ERA, though his 3.51 xERA, 3.82 xFIP, and 3.99 SIERA imply that he could be even better. That's certainly been the case over his last five starts -- the lefty has 32 punchouts in 29.1 innings to go along with a 1.53 ERA and 0.82 WHIP during that stretch. That's all resulted in him dropping 40, 46, and 52 FanDuel points in three of his last four outings. Gomber will benefit from an excellent matchup today as he toes the rubber against the Miami Marlins. On the season, Miami's 88 wRC+ and 28.2% strikeout rate against southpaws rank eighth-worst and fifth-worst in the majors, respectively.
Adam Wainwright ($7,700) - Some pitchers are simply comfortable pitching in the confines of their home stadium, and Wainwright is certainly one of those. In 184.2 innings at Busch Stadium since 2019, the veteran has pitched to the tune of a 2.73 ERA while holding his opponents to an OPS of .677 and a .291 wOBA. The 39-year-old hasn't been one to get a ton of whiffs in a long while. Instead, he racks up fantasy points by eating innings and limiting the damage done against him. Tonight's matchup is a perfect fit for that. While the Cleveland Indians' 23.6% strikeout rate against righties is just right around league average, their 88 wRC+ in that split is tied for ninth-lowest in the big leagues. Wainwright has garnered at least 49 FanDuel points in four of his last eight starts, including in three of his last five at home.
Boston Red Sox: According to numberFire's Matchup Heat Map, no team on tonight's main slate has a higher implied total than Boston's 5.07, who await a matchup with Jake Odorizzi of the Houston Astros.
Odorizzi has tossed 30 innings since the start of 2020, and the results have been...well...not great. During that stretch, the righty has been stomped for a 6.90 ERA and 2.4 dongs per nine innings. Yikes. And things are unlikely to get better in Fenway Park, a stadium that ranks as the third-friendliest for hitters in terms of runs, per FantasyPros.
The key to any Red Sox stack should be Rafael Devers ($3,700), who has brutalized right-handed pitching in 2021. To date, Devers has posted a .975 OPS, a .358 ISO, and 154 wRC+ when he's had the platoon advantage this season.
Of course, Alex Verdugo ($3,300) and Xander Bogaerts ($3,600) are also in play. Both have them have an OPS better than .920, an ISO greater than .220, and a wRC+ highest than 150 versus right-handed hurlers.
On the cheaper side of things, Christian Arroyo ($2,400) has been batting leadoff recently and has a respectable 120 wRC+ versus same-sided pitchers.
Through 36.2 innings in 2021, Anderson has amassed a 4.42 ERA, though his 4.89 SIERA and 8.58 xERA (!!) show that he's been even worse than that this season. Anderson's 12.7% strikeout rate is the lowest amongst all starters tonight, and his 1.53 WHIP is the third-highest. Hitters are smashing 1.72 taters per nine frames against the 33-year-old.
The obvious top play here is lefty masher Nick Castellanos ($4,000). Since 2017, Castellanos has a .340 average, 1.003 OPS, .276 ISO, and 163 wRC+ against pitchers that throw from the left side. During that same stretch, Eugenio Suarez ($3,000) has posted a .905 OPS, .259 ISO, and 135 wRC+ versus lefties.
For under $3,000, Jonathan India ($2,900) could be worth a look. The rookie has hit .387 over his last 11 games with a 1.170 OPS and a 17.5% walk rate. And if he starts, Tyler Stephenson ($2,700) is also in play. Stephenson's .867 OPS, .267 ISO, and 127 wRC+ against lefties this season all rank second on the team.
Los Angeles Dodgers: The Dodgers are one of just three teams with an implied run total that's greater than 5.0 tonight, and you won't necessarily have to break the bank to come up with a viable stack.
Los Angeles will be squaring off against Pittsburgh Pirates southpaw Tyler Anderson. Through 61.2 innings, Anderson actually has respectable peripherals with a 4.05 SIERA and 4.12 xFIP, however, his actual performance has been slightly worse than that. The 31-year-old has amassed a 4.67 ERA while surrendering 1.46 homers per nine innings.
Nine of the 10 home runs Anderson has conceded this season have been to right-handed hitters. With that in mind, Mookie Betts ($3,600) and Justin Turner ($3,100) will likely be top targets. Betts has actually been better in same-sided matchups for his career, and avoiding the chalk with him tonight is not the worst idea.
Though the sample size is just 58 plate appearances, Albert Pujols ($2,800) has turned the clock back against lefties in 2021. The future Hall of Famer has a .309 average, .429 wOBA, 1.018 OPS, and .364 ISO versus opposite-handed pitchers this season. Six of Pujols' nine dongs, 15 of his 24 RBI, and 17 of his 28 hits have come in this split.
Elsewhere, Chris Taylor ($3,000) has been one of the Dodgers' top hitters versus lefties this campaign. The 30-year-old has a 1.066 OPS, .362 ISO, and 186 wRC+ in 66 plate appearances against them. A.J. Pollock ($2,200) has a .943 OPS against lefties since 2019 and should be one of the best sources of salary relief on the slate.