FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Friday 9/30/22
Friday's slate is filled with big names taking the mound, but some have more to play for than others, which should help us narrow things down. All that pitching means that offense could be tougher to come by tonight, and only one team has an implied total above five runs.
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Let's check out the top options on today's main slate.
Jacob deGrom ($11,600): The Mets and Braves begin a crucial series that could determine who wins the NL East, so we should see deGrom fully unleashed tonight. The dynamic right-hander is coming off a rare misstep after lasting just four innings against the Athletics, but even the best have their off nights. He's otherwise been dominant since his return.
Over 10 starts, deGrom has compiled a 1.68 SIERA, 41.9% strikeout rate, and 3.7% walk rate, which is absolutely filthy.
As has been the case all season, Atlanta's offense may be dangerous, but they swing and miss a whole lot against right-handers. Their active roster has a 25.2% strikeout rate in the split.
deGrom faced the Braves twice in August when he was first coming back -- and all he did was rack up 12 and 9 punchouts. Even on a loaded pitching slate, it will be tough to fade him tonight.
Corbin Burnes ($10,300): The Brewers are battling for the final NL Wild Card spot, so we should also see Burnes at full capacity against the Marlins. He's now logged 100-plus pitches in six straight starts.
Burnes hasn't been consistent down the stretch, but he's fresh off an encouraging 8-strikeout performance against the Reds (47 FanDuel points), and he racked up 14 Ks earlier this month versus the Giants (73 FanDuel points).
Although the righty hasn't been able to match last year's Cy Young-winning marks in 2022, it's hard to complain about a 2.98 SIERA, 30.3% strikeout rate, and 6.7% walk rate.
Miami has the slate's lowest implied totals (2.61), and they own the fourth-worst wRC+ against righties (89) among active rosters.
Jack Flaherty ($7,900): On a slate with this many aces, it's going to be difficult to stomach taking the value route. However, if we're going there, it might as well be with a pitcher who's been an ace in years past.
Since returning in early September, Flaherty's posted some decidedly un-ace-like numbers, but his most recent start gave us a sliver of optimism. Against the Padres, the right-hander logged season-highs in FanDuel points (46), strikeouts (9), innings (6), and pitches (99) -- and it's not like San Diego has a bunch of scrubs.
It was hardly a perfect outing -- Flaherty also doled out four walks -- but it's the first time that he's flashed the upside he's previously demonstrated when healthy.
This is the right matchup to roll the dice, too. Against righties, the Pirates' active roster has a 92 wRC+ and 25.8% strikeout rate, and even with all of Flaherty's struggles, Pittsburgh still has a minuscule 2.96 implied total.
The Cardinals already have the division locked up, but Flaherty ought to be a full-go given his limited reps entering the playoffs.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Stacking against Chad Kuhl has become routine at this point, and that's even more the case when it's the Los Angeles Dodgers standing across from him. L.A. has far and away the night's highest implied total (5.26).
Since returning from the injured list in late August, Kuhl has actually produced a respectable 23.5% strikeout rate over his last six starts, a significant improvement over his season-long mark (18.1%).
The only problem? He's also allowing 2.10 homers per nine innings over this span off a 45.2% hard-hit rate and 35.2% fly-ball rate.
Whether we look at the recent data or Kuhl's year as a whole, it all points to a big night at the plate for the Dodgers.
While L.A. has nothing left to play for as it waits for postseason play, their top regulars are still playing every night, and that hopefully remains the case on Friday. This includes Will Smith ($3,100) and Max Muncy ($2,900), who both have appealing salaries for a slate where we'll likely be spending up at pitcher.
With a right-hander on the mound, we should see Joey Gallo ($2,200) crack the lineup, too. Gallo has produced a .231 ISO since joining the Dodgers, and he's barely above the minimum salary.
Los Angeles Angels
This season, Otto has an unsightly 4.95 SIERA, 17.7% strikeout rate, and 11.0% walk rate, and he's allowing 1.31 homers per nine innings off a 37.0% fly-ball rate. He has fairly even splits, so we can comfortably attack him with both righties and lefties, as well.
Rostering this limited lineup remains pretty straightforward, with Mike Trout ($4,500), Shohei Ohtani ($3,900), and Taylor Ward ($3,600) topping the wish list whenever possible and then rounding things out with the Angels' plethora of low-salaried bats when going for full stacks.
Toronto Blue Jays
While the top-third of the order remains at premium salaries, everyone else comes in on the cheap, and we can get plenty of upside from the likes of Alejandro Kirk ($2,300), Teoscar Hernandez ($3,000), and Matt Chapman ($2,500).
Pivetta had a good run earlier in the season, but as a whole, he's ultimately amounted to his usual combination of strikeouts, walks, and dingers. In the second half, he's posted a 23.1% strikeout rate and 10.1% walk rate while coughing up 1.58 home runs per nine innings.