MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Thursday 4/9/15

Stephen Strasburg is on the bump for the first time this year. Is he the clear top pitching option on the day?

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As for today's lineups -- those can be found here. The information below is to help you understand why particular players are being picked, because we don't want you going into the things completely blind. We want to help you. Keep in mind, however, that things often change up until the games start, so make sure you're refreshing the optimal lineups as close to the start of games as possible.

To get a general idea of who we're picking in tonight's slate, check out the video below, courtesy of Periscope. And be sure to follow us on there, @numberFire!

Top Pitchers

Stephen Strasburg – Strasburg is the obvious play today, as he'll be facing a Mets lineup that Vegas thinks won't even get to three runs scored. There are some lefty bats at the top of the Mets order, but Strasburg still has a 9.43 K/9 rate against lefties throughout his career, with a 3.13 xFIP. If you're rolling in cash games, Strasburg is your man.

Ian Kennedy – The Giants -- Kennedy's opponent today -- have been hitting well to start the year, posting 5, 6 and 5 runs against the Diamondbacks in Arizona. But that's precisely the point -- they were playing the Diamondbacks in Arizona. They'll be shifting from a top-10 hitter's park to a bottom-10 one, as they face off against the Padres today. Kennedy finished last season with an impressive 9.27 K/9, and he should find success today, especially considering some of the Giants' big bats struggle more against right-handed pitching.

Best High-Priced Hitters

Yoenis Cespedes - There's good news and bad news to this pick. The good news is that Cespedes is facing Twins' starter Kyle Gibson, who has a career 4.10 FIP. Though they're both righties, Cespedes doesn't see insane splits in either direction, so he should be fine from that standpoint. The bad news, however, is that there's a chance this game doesn't happen. Weather in Detroit is showing a lot of rain and potential thunderstorms. If you're going to use Cespedes, do so on a site where you can late swap to give yourself an extra half hour once the Pirates-Reds game (which could get rained out, too) starts.

Carlos Santana - To be fair, Santana is a middle-tiered player in terms of price, so putting him in the "high-priced" category may be misleading. The switch-hitting first baseman will square off against Asher Wojciechowski today, a righty with zero MLB experience. That makes Santana a solid first base option at a middle-tier price, as he'll have plenty of opportunity in the middle of the Indians lineup. The downside here is that he hits lefties better than righties, but in this case, I think you can make an exception. (This same logic can be used for all Cleveland players today.)

Most Cost-Effective Hitters

Lorenzo Cain - Last season, John Danks finished with a 4.72 FIP. And it was an improvement over 2013. Today, that's who Cain will face -- a mediocre lefty in a relatively average ball park when it comes to hitting. Cain hits lefties better than right-handers, though his splits aren't overly significant compared to some. Even still, Vegas seems to think the Royals will score plenty of runs today -- for good reason -- and Cain should be a big part of that given his place in the lineup.

Pablo Sandoval - Unlike most Red Sox hitters last night, Sandoval was able to do a little work, going 2 for 3 with an RBI and a walk. I'm a little nervous to play Red Sox hitters in Philadelphia again tonight, as the wind could be blowing towards home plate like we saw last night (Hanley Ramirez would've had a grand slam on almost any summer day in Philly). The temperatures, too, are going to be below 50 degrees. But Sandoval hits to an impressive .363 wOBA against right-handed pitching, and his ISO jumps 69 points when he sees the split. He's a nice price still across the industry, too. If you don't go with a Red Sox stack, throwing Sandoval into your cash lineups isn't a bad thought.

Click here for our top stacks of the day.