3 Under-the-Radar MLB FanDuel Plays for Monday 8/23/21
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.
Kyle Hendricks, P, Chicago Cubs ($8,300)
With a smaller six-game slate tonight, Kyle Hendricks is a pitcher you can consider.
Hendricks comes in with a very modest 17.2% strikeout rate this season but has a solid 5.3% walk rate, 51.6% medium-contact rate, and 4.48 xFIP. He's certainly not great, but those also aren't the worst numbers on tonight's slate.
He is also nearly $1,000 cheaper compared to Zack Greinke, who is essentially the same type of pitcher. That salary relief can be vital on a slate where we want to pay up for the hitters from the Houston Astros or New York Yankees.
Hendricks will be at home to take on the Colorado Rockies, who come in with a .156 ISO (20th in the league), 76 wRC+ (30th), 34.2% fly-ball rate (24th), and 23.2% strikeout rate (12th) versus right-handed pitchers this season. There is no doubt that this is an easier matchup for Hendricks, which could provide him with a path towards fantasy production tonight.
Jorge Soler, OF, Atlanta Braves ($3,500)
How popular are the Atlanta Braves going to be tonight?
That's the question I keep asking myself tonight because there is a clear path to upside for them, and if they aren't going to be popular, they are that much better for tournaments. They are going up against Jordan Montgomery, who is no doubt a solid pitcher this season, but he's not without his faults.
In 90.0 innings of action against right-handed hitters this season, Montgomery is allowing 1.10 HR/9, an 8.5% walk rate, a 40.1% fly-ball rate, and a 10.9% HR/FB rate. The league average HR/FB rate versus righties is 13.9% this season, while the league average fly-ball rate is 36.1%. So Montgomery is allowing more fly balls than the league average but less of those fly balls are going for home runs. This could mean Montgomery is due for some regression, so this is a spot you want to capitalize on.
We can turn to Jorge Soler, who has a massive .314 ISO, 132 wRC+, 50.6% fly-ball rate, and 43.4% hard-contact rate versus left-handed pitchers this season. Those are some serious power numbers, and the home run upside is very clear for Soler tonight.
Ryan McMahon, 2B/3B, Colorado Rockies ($3,300)
As much as I like Kyle Hendricks tonight, he's also worth attacking on a smaller slate.
Yes, I have some interest in the Rockies' hitters tonight despite the fact I also have an interest in Hendricks -- of course, not in the same lineup. While the Rockies aren't a great team by any means, they have some power upside in their lineup, and Hendricks has been struggling with home runs this season. Hendricks is allowing 1.75 HR/9, a 5.11 xFIP, and a 38.8% fly-ball rate versus left-handed hitters this season.
Those are some dangerous numbers for any pitcher, and it has me interested in Ryan McMahon, who comes in with a solid .215 ISO, 110 wRC+, 37.1% fly-ball rate, and 43.1% hard-contact rate versus right-handed pitchers. While the Rockies might not be a team you are rushing to fully stack tonight, searching for some one-off power could be a viable option.