MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Wednesday 6/3/15
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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.
Corey Kluber – The most expensive pitcher tonight is also the number-one guy according to our numbers, and for good reason. Corey Kluber has been a machine. He's gone seven-plus innings in each of his last four outings, allowing a grand total of five earned runs over that time. His strikeout totals during these games? Oh, no big deal, just 18, 12, 7 and 13. He'll face a Royals team today that has hit righties fairly well this year though, and are striking out at the third-lowest rate in the split in baseball, so the matchup isn't necessarily ideal. Vegas, thinks the Indians will win, but aren't giving them as strong odds as the Padres and White Sox, who are throwing out two of their studs tonight in James Shields and Chris Sale. Because of that, I would differentiate a bit on a site like FanDuel where wins play a bigger part, but I'd also be cognizant of the fact that Kluber isn't a guy you need 100% exposure to tonight because of the other options out there.
Rick Porcello – Porcello admittedly doesn't have a ton of upside tonight, but that's what you'll get when you're using cheaper pitching options in DFS. His ERA is a dreadful 5.37 this season, but a 4.82 FIP and 4.19 xFIP make that look a little better. He's also striking out batters at a higher rate than he has in the past, and while that could regress, know that the Twins have the fifth-worst strikeout rate against right-handed pitching this year, including a wOBA that's tied for fifth from the bottom as well. The Sox are favored heavily, too, which helps.
Alternative Option: Mike Leake
Anthony Rizzo - Rizzo always seems to be buried in DFS, more than likely because of the deep position he plays. He's been unreal this season though -- a .431 wOBA, .256 ISO, 9 bombs, and 31 RBI. Tonight the Cubs will face right-hander Dan Haren, who's been fortunate this year with a .239 BABIP. Don't let his 3.03 ERA fool you -- Haren's FIP is still below average, and most important to Rizzo, Haren's allowed a .354 wOBA to left-handed bats this season.
Joc Pederson - This should pretty much be a given at this point, but as we've seen over the last couple of days, Joc Pederson in Coors against a right-handed pitcher is daily fantasy baseball gold. He's now homered in each of his last four games, and while Chad Bettis had a nice outing against Philly his last time out -- nearly pitching a no-hitter -- the righty-lefty matchup at Coors Field certainly favors Pederson here. And this Dodgers lineup is no joke.
Alternative Option: Nolan Arenado
Denard Span - First off, Span isn't necessarily "cheap", but he could be cost-effective tonight. The Nationals get lefty Mark Buehrle, who's continued to be a target for daily fantasy baseball players this season with a poor FIP. Buehrle doesn't have crazy splits, and Span has traditionally not been a big platoon guy, but the Nationals should be able to score some runs tonight. Vegas thinks so, at least. And if Span is back from his sore knee, he should be part of it.
Luis Valbuena - Before plugging Valbuena into your roster, make sure he's in a good spot in the Astros' lineup, because it can vary. But if he's batting fifth like he often does against right-handers, he's a nice cheap option for you at third base tonight. Miguel Gonzalez is Houston's pitching opponent, and he's been giving up 1.16 home runs per nine innings this year with a 4.43 FIP. Over his career, lefties are hitting to a respectable .316 wOBA, but what's important here is that Valbuena generally can take advantage of a righty matchup -- he's hitting to a .350 wOBA against them this season with a crazy-good .276 ISO. For such a cheap cost, he's worth a look, as are the rest of the Astros.
Alternative Option: Kole Calhoun