MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 9/29/15
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.
Tyson Ross -- Many of you may be shocked not to see Clayton Kershaw or Madison Bumgarner as our top pitching option on the board. However, despite the fact that Vegas has the Giants and Dodgers locked into a minuscule 5.5 over/under tonight, both the Los Angeles and San Francisco lineups are incredibly tough matchups -- both rank inside the top ten in all of baseball in wRC+ against lefties and neither rank in the top half of the league in strikeout percentage. Contrarily, Ross draws an excellent matchup against a Brewers squad who ranks 22nd in wOBA (.312) and 27th in wRC+ (91) and strikeout at the seventh highest rate in the majors (22.1%) against right-handed pitching this year. Although he hasn't put up the numbers that Kershaw has, the Padres' ace hasn't been too shabby himself this season with a 2.94 FIP and 3.14 xFIP while striking out the eighth most batters per nine innings in the league at 9.71. Additionally, San Diego is a huge -170 favorite in a game that features the second lowest total on the board. Ross is our top overall projected player on the board tonight even with the likes of Kershaw and Bumgarner taking the hill.
Alternative Options: Clayton Kershaw, Madison Bumgarner
Mike Fiers -- Fiers has had somewhat of an up-and-down season, currently sitting with a less-than-stellar 4.06 FIP and 4.09 xFIP. Although his FIP and xFIP aren't great, he does have a SIERA less than four (3.89) and has struck out an impressive 8.91 batters per nine innings this season. All that said, what I really like about Fiers tonight is his strikeout upside against a Mariners lineup that has struck out at the third highest rate in all of baseball (21.9%) against right-handed pitching on the year. Seattle plays at one of the most pitcher-friendly parks in the league and has been a below-average hitting team all season long, ranking just 18th in wOBA (.311) against righties through 157 games. While I'm probably not playing anyone outside of the three aces listed above in cash games, Fiers is a very interesting tournament play tonight.
Edwin Encarnacion -- The Blue Jays have been the best hitting team in baseball pretty much from wire to wire this season. They lead the majors in wOBA (.343), wRC+ (116), ISO (.188) and OPS (.793) on the year, which is much of the reason why our algorithm is so high on them tonight. Although Josh Donaldson and Jose Bautista are both excellent plays in their own right, the Jays' batter I will likely own the most shares of tonight is Encarnacion. The Toronto first baseman has actually faired much better against right-handed pitching than left-handed this year, owning a .388 wOBA, .281 ISO and .922 OPS against righties so far this season. Meanwhile, Orioles' starter Miguel Gonzalez has struggled against batters from both sides of the plate, allowing a wOBA above .330 with a FIP above 4.80 against both right-handed and left-handed hitters on the year. Look for another offensive outburst from the Blue Jays tonight, with Encarnacion right in the middle of the action.
Carlos Correa -- Correa was touted as one of the top prospects in all of baseball coming into the year and he lived up to that hype, earning a .368 wOBA, .232 ISO and .862 OPS in his rookie year. While those numbers are definitely impressive, the power hitting shortstop has actually put up much stronger numbers when facing left-handed pitching. Correa has crushed lefties to the tune of a .393 wOBA, .297 ISO and .938 OPS, which bodes extremely well against Vidal Nuno and his 5.25 FIP against righties. The Astros' young star makes an excellent play on all platforms tonight.
Alternative Options: Josh Donaldson, Bryce Harper
Marwin Gonzalez -- Speaking of Astros who have smashed left-handed pitching this season, the switch-hitting Gonzalez has posted a .350 wOBA, .187 ISO and .808 OPS against southpaws this season. As I already alluded to, Nuno has struggled when facing righties all season long, giving up a .351 wOBA to right-handed batters to go along with his 5.25 FIP. Gonzalez is in a great spot tonight against Nuno and is an absolute steal at just $2,700 on DraftKings and $2,300 on FanDuel.
Chris Coghlan -- The Cubs are -150 favorites in a game that is expected to be very high scoring tonight and draw a matchup against Reds' rookie Josh Smith who has looked absolutely terrible through the first five starts of his career. Smith has been especially horrible against left-handed bats, allowing lefties to hit for a ridiculous .492 wOBA while earning an abysmal 9.59 FIP and 7.06 xFIP. With this in mind, all Cubs' lefties are in play tonight, however, if you're looking for a cheap option Coghlan is your guy. The Cubs' outfielder has amassed a .354 wOBA, .211 ISO and .829 OPS against lefties this season and costs just $2,600 on FanDuel and $3,600 on DraftKings. Do not hesitate to plug him into your lineup in all formats tonight.