3 MLB FanDuel Value Plays to Target on Friday 5/20/22
With production being highly variable on a night-to-night basis, daily fantasy baseball plays a bit differently than other sports.
As a result of this, the primary method of selecting hitters is to "stack" certain teams in good spots to produce. Most of the top stacks on a given day come with hefty salaries. In addition to that, a vast majority of pitchers with the upside to win tournaments are high-salaried hurlers.
Therefore, crushing your value plays -- whether it be a pitcher unexpectedly piling up strikeouts or a low-salaried batter racking up points -- can be the secret sauce to taking down a tournament.
Which budget options stand out today on FanDuel?
Cristian Javier, P, Astros ($7,800)
Cristian Javier stands out among today's value hurlers.
For the campaign, Javier sports a 3.20 SIERA, 29.1% strikeout rate and 11.9% swinging-strike rate. He's been a quality pitcher for most of his career, holding a 3.96 career SIERA.
The lone blemish with Javier is his propensity to allow fly-balls, and that's very much still a thing as he's permitted a 53.4% fly-ball rate in 2022. But with a career hard-hit rate of 31.5%, he has been able to keep the ball in the yard fairly well throughout his time in The Show (1.44 homers per nine).
He draws a friendly matchup today versus the Texas Rangers. Texas -- owners of a lowly 3.56 implied total -- spent big this offseason to add some pop to their lineup. It's not going well thus far as the Rangers sit 25th in wOBA (.289).
On a Coors slate, Javier's salary is awfully appealing, and he has this ability to hang with the slate's studs. Our model projects him to score 31.4 FanDuel points, the third-most tonight, and he's the top point-per-dollar pitcher.
Rowdy Tellez, 1B, Brewers ($2,800)
Rowdy Tellez has been really good this year against righties.
In the split, he boasts a .356 wOBA and 50.7% fly-ball rate. If we narrow it down to at home versus right-handers, the numbers get silly -- .500 wOBA, 41.4% hard-hit rate, and 69.0% fly-ball rate with 5 jacks in 46 plate appearances. Obviously, that's a small sample, but the dude is crushing it with the platoon advantage.
He'll have said advantage against Erick Fedde. With a 4.48 SIERA, Fedde isn't having much success this year, and left-handed hitters have tagged him for a .347 wOBA while striking out just 18.3% of the time.
Tellez offers big-time pop at a modest salary.
Kyle Garlick, OF, Twins ($2,000)
The Minnesota Twins are scheduled to face southpaw Daniel Lynch, and the last time they saw a lefty, Kyle Garlick hit third. If Garlick is in a juicy spot in the lineup once again, that alone makes him a fantastic value option when he's salaried at the minimum.
On top of that, Garlick has been legit good against lefties. A year ago, he recorded a .363 wOBA in the split, and he's got a .378 wOBA against left-handers across 126 career plate appearances.
Lynch isn't a bad pitcher, but his numbers are worse across the board versus righties. In that split, he's been hit for a .363 wOBA and 43.4% fly-ball rate in his career.
Our algorithm projects Garlick for 10.8 FanDuel points and rates him as the second-best point-per-dollar play among all hitters.