MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 9/22/15
If you've never played daily fantasy baseball before, it's time to start. Unlike traditional leagues, you're able to select the players you want on that specific day only, giving you a different squad to root for each and every day.
And if you'd like, you can use our optimal lineups here at numberFire.com to crush the competition.
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.
Jake Arrieta -- The Cubs' ace has put together a spectacular season. He's posted a 19-6 record with a minuscule 1.96 ERA, 2.51 FIP, 2.75 xFIP and 2.91 SIERA while striking out an impressive 9.09 batters per nine innings. Tonight, Arrieta draws a plus matchup against a Brewers squad who ranks just 18th in wOBA (.317) and 23rd in wRC+ (95) with the eighth highest strikeout rate in the Majors (21.8%) since the All-Star break. Considering Vegas has Chicago locked in as -320 favorites in what is expected to be one of the lowest scoring games on tonight's slate, look for the Cubs' star to put on a show tonight and earn his 20th win of the season. He is our highest overall projected pitcher on the board for tonight's slate.
Alternative Options: Tyson Ross
Gio Gonzalez -- Gonzalez has quietly had a very strong season through his first 28 starts. The Nationals' southpaw has put up a 3.12 FIP, 3.60 xFIP and 3.77 SIERA while striking out 8.61 batters per nine innings on the year. What truly makes Gonzalez an excellent play tonight is his matchup with an Orioles lineup that has struggled mightily against left-handed pitching all season long. Baltimore ranks just 25th in both wOBA (.296) and wRC+ (83) while striking out at a massive 23.2% rate against lefties this season. The Nationals' veteran starter makes a strong play in all formats tonight.
Andrew McCutchen -- With Pittsburgh continuing their series with the Rockies in Colorado tonight, once again pretty much all Pirates bats are in play tonight. I wrote about Cutch yesterday, and although he didn't have any hits, he came through with three walks and a run scored in a huge Pittsburgh victory. As much as I loved the Pirates' star last night, I like him even more tonight. McCutchen has obliterated left-handed pitching this season, posting a .420 wOBA, .202 ISO and .978 OPS against southpaws on the season and gets the pleasure of facing off against Rockies' lefty Chris Rusin tonight. Rusin has struggled against right-handed bats all season long, amassing a 4.59 FIP against righties while allowing them to hit for a .363 wOBA on the year. The former National League MVP is in a great spot tonight in what is expected to be the highest scoring game on the slate. Do not hesitate to plug him into your lineup in all formats.
Kyle Schwarber -- Schwarber has managed to put together a very impressive rookie campaign. He's blasted 16 homers and driven in 42 RBI in just 59 games this season and has been nothing short of spectacular when facing right-handed pitching. The Cubs' rookie has earned a .415 wOBA, .322 ISO and .985 OPS against righties on the year and should have little trouble taking advantage of a plus matchup against Brewers' righty Jimmy Nelson. Nelson has been horrific against left-handed bats this season, putting up a 5.06 FIP and 4.43 xFIP while righties have knocked him around for a whopping .376 wOBA. Schwarber makes an excellent play tonight at just $4,400 on DraftKings and $4,100 on FanDuel.
Justin Ruggiano -- The Dodgers' platoon specialist Ruggiano has absolutely destroyed left-handed pitching this season. He's amassed a .416 wOBA, .290 ISO and .982 OPS against lefties and gets a spectacular matchup against Diamondbacks' southpaw Robbie Ray tonight. Ray has struggled against righties all season long, posting a 4.47 xFIP against right-handed bats on the year. Look for Ruggiano to hit at the top of the Dodgers' order and have plenty of opportunities to score fantasy points tonight. He is very much in play at $3,500 on FanDuel but provides even better value at just $3,200 on DraftKings.
Trayce Thompson -- Speaking of players who have destroyed left-handed pitching this season, the White Sox rookie Thompson has put up an absurd .482 wBOA, .375 ISO and 1.155 OPS against southpaws on the season. With Chicago facing off against Tigers' lefty Daniel Norris and his 4.80 xFIP against right-handed bats, Thompson immediately becomes one of my favorite value plays on the board tonight. He is an absolute steal at just $3,000 on FanDuel and $3,400 on DraftKings tonight.