3 MLB FanDuel Value Plays to Target on Friday 8/26/22

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?

Bailey Falter, P, Phillies ($6,200)

There's always plenty of risk in going with any pitcher who is this far down in salary. If it goes wrong, it might completely sink your lineup regardless of what your bats do. And with Gerrit Cole, Chris Bassitt, Shane Bieber, Spencer Strider and Joe Musgrove on this slate, there are bound to be some big scores tonight at pitcher.

So while acknowledging all of that, I'm going to recommend Bailey Falter.

Falter has shown to be a pretty good pitcher. In 78 2/3 career MLB frames, he's recorded a 3.91 SIERA and 22.3% strikeout rate. He's been dealing down on the farm this year, too, posting a 28.8% strikeout rate, 3.5% walk rate and 14.2% swinging-strike rate in Triple-A.

He has the skills to come through in a dream matchup against the Pittsburgh Pirates. For the year, Pittsburgh is 28th in wOBA (.286) with the 2nd-highest strikeout rate (25.5%). Matchups don't get much better than this, and the Buccos have a meh 3.45 implied total.

Of course, I'm glossing over some negatives in Falter's profile -- namely a career 46.3% fly-ball rate, which has led to 1.72 dingers per nine. That's obviously an issue. But at the end of the day, he's a pretty good option for someone with a $6,200 salary. And said salary frees you up to go nuts with your hitters, giving you a chance to stack up high-salary offenses like the Houston Astros, San Diego Padres and New York Mets, all of whom are in juicy matchups.

If you're making only one lineup, Falter probably isn't for you, but if you're mass-entering, he's worth sprinkling into some lineups. We project him for 25.7 FanDuel points, and I think he has a shot to outproduce that. If he gets to 30 points and your high-salary bats pop off, you could be in business.

A.J. Pollock, OF, White Sox ($2,500)

A.J. Pollock is expected to hit leadoff tonight, and that alone makes him a viable value target at this salary.

On top of that, he's facing left-hander Tommy Henry. Through a small sample of 22 2/3 MLB frames, Henry hasn't shown much, pitching to a 4.90 SIERA and 16.8% strikeout rate. He wasn't thriving at Triple-A, either, recording a 21.9% strikeout rate over a much larger sample of 108 innings.

Pollock will have the platoon advantage, and he's killed it in this split for the majority of this career, mashing his way to a .362 wOBA in 1,162 plate appearances against southpaws.

The Chicago White Sox are a sneaky-good stack today, holding a 4.78 implied total. With Pollock, Andrew Vaughn ($2,800), Luis Robert ($3,100) and Eloy Jimenez ($3,000) all at modest salaries, the Pale Hose pair perfectly with a high-salary ace.

Brandon Lowe, 2B, Rays ($2,400)

Brandon Lowe is too good to be salaried this low -- it's that simple.

Lowe has struggled with injuries throughout 2022, and he's been benched a lot recently against left-handers. Those two things have driven his salary down to this level. Plus, he just hasn't been producing of late.

But in 2021, Lowe popped 39 taters and finished with a .363 wOBA. He had a .380 wOBA in 2020. He's a proven big-league bat, and he'll snap out of his current funk at some point.

He gets a welcoming matchup today against Michael Wacha. A righty, Wacha has a 19.1% strikeout rate overall, and lefties have posted a 43.8% fly-ball rate against him.

Lowe is a bet-on-talent salary-saver.