3 MLB FanDuel Studs to Target on Thursday 7/14/22

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, as well, 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.

Framber Valdez, SP, Houston Astros ($10,300)

It's an ace day! We have a pile of top-flight options, and if there is just ONE we need to pick, it's Framber Valdez of the Houston Astros.

Let's highlight some of the other top-flight options before we dive too deeply. Corbin Burnes ($11,300) squares up with Carlos Rodon ($10,900), but with these two squaring off directly, it's gonna be a blood bath for who is going to get the win. Kyle Wright ($10,500) has recorded a nice season, but the Washington Nationals, Wright's opponent, is one of the toughest in the league to whiff (19.1%).

Despite having studs like Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani, the Los Angeles Angels have been one of the worst offenses in the league. They rank in the bottom third in team wOBA, and their elevated 26.5% is outrated disgusting.

Projected for 34.5 FanDuel points, Valdez could be primed for a monster night.

Matt Olson, 1B, Atlanta Braves ($3,700)

I hate to be Debbie Downer, but with Anibal Sanchez not pitching in 2021, and returning to make his first start from the 60-day Injured List, this seems like a prime recipe for disaster tonight.

Let's look back at his COVID-2020 season-shortened numbers. In 53 innings pitched, Sanchez allowed 1.87 HR/9 with a career-worst 17.6% strikeout rate. Now pitching nearly two years later, is this really someone that we want to roster?

Sporting one of the top implied team totals of the day, I want plenty of exposure to this lineup tonight, and that leads me to Matt Olson of the Atlanta Braves. Olson's .225 isolated power (ISO) is in line with his career norms, and his batted-ball profile reflects a solid set of metrics we need to employ.

Mookie Betts, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers ($4,100)

I have often called Dakota Hudson a witch because I don't really understand how he is surviving in today's game of major league baseball.

He strikes out almost no one (13.3%), he gives out way too many walks (10.9%), and he allows a decent amount of hard contact (31.4%).

This season, he's actually done a solid job of shutting down lefties, but righties sport a 33%+ hard-hit and fly-ball rate this season. That's where Mookie Betts comes in.

The Los Angeles Dodgers rank among the league's elite offense in terms of wOBA (.334) and ISO (.180), and Betts has returned with a flourish from the Injured List. Betts sports a 141 wRC+ mark, including a very solid .273 ISO and a 48.5% fly-ball rate.

All of this leads me to rostering Betts tonight.

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.