3 MLB FanDuel Studs to Target on Tuesday 8/10/21

Nelson Cruz has been downright incredible this season, and he's got a great matchup tonight. Which other plays should we think about?

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.

Alex Wood, SP, San Francisco Giants ($8,600)

With kind of a funky main slate on tap -- at least in terms of what arms are available -- the pitching options are certainly interesting. Our algorithm likes Aaron Nola as the top play of the day, but keep in mind that he faces a Los Angeles Dodgers offense that has been tough to deal with (.323 wOBA) and strikeout (20.7%) over the last week.

While Max Scherzer ($10,600) and Sean Manaea ($10,000) are the apparent top arms, our projections are not sold and actually rank Alex Wood second on the slate behind Nola. While his strikeout projection is low (5.49), Wood is rating out as 48% likely to pick up a win, trailing only Manaea's 49% probability, according to our model. If you want to save a few more dollars, you could consider playing Wood, who's far cheaper than the above-mentioned pitchers and has a tasty matchup.

The San Francisco Giants will take on the Arizona Diamondbacks, who, over the last week, have struck out at a 30.3% clip while posting the second-worst wOBA mark in the league. In fact, since the start of July, Arizona's 85 wRC+ and 24.9% punch-out rate both rank third-worst in the majors, per FanGraphs.

For those factors, let's rock with Wood.

Eloy Jimenez, OF, Chicago White Sox ($3,400)

On likely a chalky stack of the day, Eloy Jimenez exploded last night for two bombs. Can he keep it up tonight?

Vegas certainly thinks the South Siders are gonna go off, sporting a slate-best implied team total of 5.76 runs against Griffin Jax of the Minnesota Twins, according to numberFire's Matchup Heat Map. Jax sports some ugly numbers tonight for the season -- he owns a putrid 31.7% ground-ball rate and only a 16.2% strikeout rate.

While it's only been 32 innings on the season, Jax has allowed 2.25 HR/9 on the year, and Jimenez, who has left the yard four times in his last two games, could add to his season-long totals tonight.

Nelson Cruz, OF, Tampa Bay Rays ($3,600)

One stack that may get a bit overlooked tonight involves the Tampa Bay Rays, but it could be a viable one if we dig deep under the hood.

Eduardo Rodriguez of the Boston Red Sox has been in full-blown struggle mode for much 2021 -- his 5.53 ERA is pretty ugly this season, and while his 3.49 SIERA indicates he could be a bit unlucky and his recent form has been better, there's no denying he hasn't been Cy Young-worthy.

Newly acquired Nelson Cruz has been awesome at the plate, and he's slammed lefties -- he's logged a .350 average, 1.131 OPS, .350 ISO, and .453 wOBA mark in the split since 2019. For those reasons, I'm going with Nelson Cruz.

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.