FanDuel Pitching Primer: Tuesday 7/26/22

Shane McClanahan has been otherworldly this year, and he's got a great matchup tonight. Which other pitching plays make sense?

In daily fantasy baseball, success starts with nailing the starting pitcher spot in your lineup.

When compared to hitters, pitching performance tends to be much more predictable and stable throughout the course of the season. You know what you're getting from a top-level ace when you roster him: probably a dominant effort with only one or two implosions per season. In contrast, even the game's best hitters have days at the plate where they go 0-for-4.

As a result, lineup construction should begin with the starting pitcher. Which pitchers should you consider on today's main slate?

High-Salary Play #1
Shane McClanahan, Tampa Bay Rays

at Baltimore Orioles
FanDuel Salary: $11,600

There are three huge arms with salaries over $10,000 tonight, but if I'm picking just one, I have to go with Shane McClanahan of the Tampa Bay Rays.

In today's studs piece, I recommended Carlos Rodon, who I will preview next. But McClanahan has just as good of a matchup at a slightly elevated salary. He faces an Baltimore Orioles team that ranks in the bottom third of the league in the big three categories I like to hone in (strikeout rate, wOBA, and ISO).

McClanahan is paving the way as a top-five overall starting pitcher next year with some ridiculous metrics. In 110 2/3 innings, the southpaw has a 35.7% strikeout rate and a 50.6% ground-ball rate. His 2.42 FIP ranks him as the third-best arm among qualified starters.

If you can afford his services, he's a great a play.

High-Salary Play #2

Carlos Rodon, San Francisco Giants

at Arizona Diamondbacks
FanDuel Salary: $10,800

Checking in as our second-best projected arm on the day, Rodon gets me equally excited as McClanahan today.

It may come down to how much you can afford at the starting pitcher slot, as Rodon provides you $800 of salary relief. And like his fellow lefty counterpart, Rodon faces a poor offense in the Arizona Diamondbacks that ranks bottom of the barrel in the key aforementioned metrics.

While Rodon was non-tendered by his former team in a bit of a head-scratcher, in 110 innings pitched, he has a 30.8% strikeout rate and has allowed only 0.41 HR/9 this season.

If you gotta hit the sale rack on an ace starter, peep Rodon.

Mid-Salary Play

Luis Garcia, Houston Astros

at Oakland Athletics
FanDuel Salary: $9,500

If you truly need to save some #buckies for the Coors Field game or some other top-notch plays, one guy in the mid-range to consider has to be Luis Garcia.

Here's the why behind that declaration. The Oakland Athletics have the league's worst team wOBA (.272), and with bopper Seth Brown missing the game due to paternity leave, this offense gets even shoddier. Their .125 ISO and 23.4% strikeout rate aren't too hot, either.

That's not meant to take anything away from Garcia, too. He's logged a 19.2% K-BB% rate, and he's hard to square up with a 30.6% hard-hit rate allowed.

Garcia could be a major value 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.