4 Daily Fantasy Baseball Value Plays for Thursday 9/30/21
With production being highly variable on a night-to-night basis, daily fantasy baseball plays a bit differently than other sports.
An 0-for-4 dud from a chalky high-salaried slugger is a lot more common than a total dud from a top-salaried NBA player or a stinker from a top quarterback or running back.
That means that it's not uncommon for value plays to end up doing the heavy lifting in carrying your lineup. These low-salary picks sometimes being the difference between a good lineup and a great lineup isn't much different than DFS for other sports. But value plays being able to completely make up for a whiff on a high-salaried play is somewhat unique to MLB DFS.
Rich Hill, SP, Mets
FanDuel Salary: $7,400
We have a few quality options among pitchers salaried under $9,000. While you can make strong cases for Ian Anderson and Joe Ryan -- both of whom are $8,800 -- I'll take the salary savings with Rich Hill.
Hill gets a dream date with the Miami Marlins. Miami's offense has been among the league's worst all year, and nothing has changed down the stretch. Across the past 30 days, the Marlins sit dead last in wOBA (.270) with the highest team strikeout rate (27.3%). They're the best matchup out there and carry a measly 3.45 implied total -- the slate's lowest.
In his age-41 campaign, Hill still has some juice. He's pitched to a 4.40 SIERA and 22.6% strikeout rate, and he punched out eight in six innings of one-run ball the last time he saw Miami.
Our model projects Hill as the best point-per-dollar play among those with a salary of $6,900 or above.
Miguel Sano, 1B, Twins
FanDuel Salary: $2,600
Sign me up.
Skubal has been good overall this season, but right-handed hitters have mashed the Detroit Tigers' southpaw for a 46.1% fly-ball rate and 2.35 taters per nine.
With the platoon advantage in 2021, Sano has put up a 46.4% hard-hit rate, and he had a 47.6% hard-hit rate in the split last year. Sano checks in as the top point-per-dollar stick, according to our projections.
Michael Conforto, OF, Mets
FanDuel Salary: $2,300
In 881 plate appearances across 2019 and 2020, Michael Conforto racked up a .370 wOBA with a 12.3% walk rate while looking like a really good MLB hitter. Things haven't gone well for Conforto this season as he's struggled to the tune of a .315 wOBA.
There's been some bad luck at play, though. Conforto has an expected wOBA of .347 while his 37.8% hard-hit rate is a touch better than his hard-hit rates from either 2019 or 2020. A .267 BABIP and 13.0% homer-to-fly-ball rate are dragging him down. His career averages in those categories are .299 and 18.9%, respectively.
Conforto's results have turned a bit in the second half (.339 wOBA), and he's got a 39.0% hard-hit rate this year against righties. That makes him an appealing value pick in a matchup with Edward Cabrera, a rookie who lefties have bombed for a .442 wOBA in his brief MLB career.
We rank Conforto as the sixth-best point-per-dollar bat among all hitters.
Bobby Dalbec, 1B, Red Sox
FanDuel Salary: $3,000
Wells owns a 5.62 SIERA and 13.7% strikeout rate this year in 36 2/3 MLB frames. Righties have a .413 wOBA against him while popping 2.70 home runs per nine. Boston got to him for five earned runs in five innings back on September 19th.
Dalbec, a righty, sports a .361 wOBA and 43.1% fly-ball rate versus left-handers. He's been one of Boston's best hitters in the second half, slugging his way to a .396 wOBA with a delicious batted-ball profile (42.2% hard-hit rate and 46.8% fly-ball rate).
Dalbec checks a lot of boxes and figures to be a popular target at his friendly salary.