FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 6/22/22

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 projections and 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.

Pitching Breakdown

Shohei Ohtani ($10,000 on FanDuel) is in a tier of his own today as the slate's top pitching play.

It's hard to find any flaws with his numbers. Ohtani boasts a 2.86 SIERA, 31.2% strikeout rate, 14.6% swinging-strike rate, and 6.1% walk rate. A matchup with the Kansas City Royals doesn't hurt things as KC is 24th in wOBA for the year (.298) and carries a slate-low 3.26 implied total.

We project Ohtani for 37.5 FanDuel points -- 6.0 clear of anyone else.

After Ohtani, things are pretty wide open. There are talented arms out there -- guys such as Carlos Rodon ($10,500), Tarik Skubal ($9,600), and Shane Baz ($7,200) -- who have difficult matchups. The three guys I'm most into are George Kirby ($8,800), Jordan Montgomery ($9,100), and Sonny Gray ($9,700) -- in that order.

Kirby has a great case for the number-two slot behind Ohtani. He's facing an Oakland Athletics offense that barely has a pulse -- dead last in wOBA (.268) with the ninth-highest strikeout rate (23.5%) -- and Kirby is showing a superb 3.36 SIERA through his first 43 MLB innings. While he lacks top-shelf strikeout upside (22.9% strikeout rate), he's also walking only 2.8% of hitters, so it's unlikely he drops a dud in this spot.

Montgomery has been really good of late and can have success versus the Tampa Bay Rays. Montgomery has permitted more than two runs in a start just once across his last 12 outings -- and that exception was a three-run appearance -- and he's generated a lot of whiffs in recent turns, holding a 17.7% swinging-strike rate over his past three starts, although that's led to just a 20.0% strikeout rate in that span. Tampa Bay has the ninth-highest strikeout rate (23.5%) and comes in with a 3.28 implied total, the second-lowest.

Gray's 3.19 SIERA and 27.9% strikeout rate look outstanding at first glance, but with a meh 9.7% swinging-strike rate, Gray's strikeout rate is due to come down. He's also gone more than 84 pitches just once this campaign, so while I like the matchup with the Cleveland Guardians, Gray is at least one notch below Kirby and Montgomery in my eyes.

Stacks to Target

Baltimore Orioles

The Baltimore Orioles have a mouth-watering matchup versus Patrick Corbin, and their salaries -- no one over $3,400 -- make them a perfect fit alongside Ohtani (as long as the weather cooperates in Baltimore). The Orioles' 4.87 implied total is the slate's highest.

Corbin is having a brutal year. He's not quite as horrible as his 6.59 ERA suggests, but with a 4.47 SIERA and 17.0% strikeout rate, he's really bad. Since the start of 2021, he's giving up 1.79 homers per nine. Righties are hammering him for a .361 wOBA this season after they posted a .387 wOBA against him last year.

Factoring in salary, Austin Hays ($3,100) and Trey Mancini ($2,900) are two of my favorite bats on the slate. Mancini has a 45.5% fly-ball rate this year with the platoon advantage. Hays' numbers are better against righties, but he does have a 47.5% fly-ball rate versus southpaws.

Cedric Mullins ($3,400), Anthony Santander ($3,200), and Ryan Mountcastle ($3,400) will have the platoon advantage against Corbin, while Tyler Nevin ($2,100) and Adley Rutschman ($2,400) can be useful value cogs and will also hit from the right side.

Minnesota Twins

The Minnesota Twins are another modest-salaried stack that can go off today.

Minnesota is taking on Triston McKenzie, whose 2.96 ERA is mostly a smoke-and-mirrors act. His SIERA is 4.18, and he gives up the kind of contact -- including a 54.5% fly-ball rate -- we want when looking for arms to stack against. Over 223 1/3 career innings, McKenzie has surrendered 1.53 homers per nine, and he gets beat up fairly equally by both righties and lefties.

Byron Buxton ($3,900) is the lone Twin salaried above $3,300. He's certainly a quality play -- number-four stick on the slate, per our model -- as is Carlos Correa ($3,300), but I'm super interested in building around the value trio of Alex Kirilloff ($2,300), Max Kepler ($2,500), and Trevor Larnach ($2,200). Those three give you a lot of flexibility with the rest of your lineup, and they are legit solid plays. Kepler is my favorite of the bunch as he sports a .392 expected wOBA overall.

Los Angeles Angels

Daniel Lynch has a really hard time with right-handed hitters, and he's a pitcher we can pick on tonight.

Versus righties this season, Lynch has allowed a .352 wOBA and 1.51 taters per nine. He also gives up a 38.7% hard-hit rate and 44.2% fly-ball rate in the split.

The Los Angeles Angels have a righty named Mike Trout ($4,400) who is pretty good, and there's enough value on the slate that Trout may wind up as the night's most popular hitter.

The upside of an Angels stack gets dinged with Ohtani pitching (since he's not in the player pool as a hitter), but Taylor Ward ($2,900) continues to be under-salaried. He's put up a .422 wOBA and .408 expected wOBA and has been one of the game's best hitters this year. Ward will likely be in the leadoff spot.

After Ward and Trout, things fall off, especially with Jared Walsh ($3,100) losing a lot of his luster against a lefty. A mini-stack of Ward and Trout may be the best way to go, but I'm into Matt Duffy ($2,200). He's projected to hit fourth, is nearly the minimum salary, and can be plugged in at first, second or third base.

Max Stassi ($2,300) and Jo Adell ($2,000) need to be on the dart-throw radar if they get into the lineup.