MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Sunday 4/10/16
The beauty of daily fantasy baseball is that the top targets are different each and every day. Whether it's the right-handed catcher who destroys left-handed pitching or the mid-range hurler facing a depleted lineup, you're not going to find yourself using the same assets time after time.
While this breaks up the monotony, it can make it hard to decide which players are primed to succeed on a given day. We can help bridge that gap.
In addition to our custom optimal lineups, you can check out our batting and pitching heat maps, which show the pieces in the best spot to succeed on that slate. Put on the finishing touches with our games and lineups page to see who's hitting where and what the weather looks like, and you'll have yourself a snazzy looking team to put up some big point totals.
If you need help getting started on that trek, here are some of the top options on the board today. With the staggered start times, these will focus exclusively on the main slate, which starts at 7 pm Eastern.
Pitchers to Target
Dallas Keuchel (FanDuel Price - $11,100): Keuchel wasn't his usual dominant self in his first outing, but was still effective enough to get the win against a tough Yankees' lineup. Things should be much easier tonight, as he takes on a Brewers team that ranked 26th in wOBA against lefties in 2015. There is also considerable strikeout potential in this matchup, as Milwaukee posted the eighth highest strikeout rate in the Majors against righties, and has since added strikeout machine Chris Carter. Keuchel's opponent on the mound will be Jimmy Nelson, who boasted a 4.09 SIERA last year. As a result, Vegas has Keuchel projected as the fifth most likely pitcher to pick up a win.
Matt Harvey ($10,700): Harvey was roughed up a bit in his first start of the season, but has a chance to bounce back in a big way against the Phillies. Philadelphia was the worst team in the league against righties last season, posting a league-worst .297 wOBA. They also posted the 10th highest strikeout rate and third lowest walk rate against righties. Through four games this season, Philly has scored just 12 runs while posting a combined batting average of .212 and a 37 to 7 strikeout to walk ratio. Philadelphia will run Jeremy Hellickson and his 2015 SIERA of 4.14 out against the Mets, and Vegas does not see it ending well for them. Harvey has the highest chance of picking up a win, as well as the lowest implied opponent team total on the slate, according to Vegas.
Joe Ross ($6,800): Ross was terrific in his first 76 Major League innings, but what was most impressive about his rookie season was his dominance against right-handers, which bodes well against a Miami lineup with only three left-handed bats. Ross allowed just a .252 slugging percentage and .205 wOBA against righties, while posting a pristine 26.3 percent strikeout rate and 3.8 percent walk rate. Miami predictably struggled against right-handers last season, posting a putrid .297 wOBA against righties, the worst mark in the league. To be fair, a good bit of that came without some of their best hitters, but at the same time, those hitters also struggle against right-handed pitching. Specifically, Giancarlo Stanton, posted pretty severe splits against righties last year. He's always the one you need to worry about if targeting the Marlins, so it is very encouraging that Ross lines up well against him, from a statistical standpoint. Stanton's career ISO against righties is .263, as opposed to a .323 mark against lefties. His wOBA is down from .415 against lefties, to .377 against righties. He strikes out more often, too, as evidenced by his 29.6 percent career strikeout rate against righties and 24.1 percent against lefties.
Hitters to Target
Carlos Gonzalez ($4,500): James Shields, while thought of as a quality pitcher, couldn't figure out lefties last season, allowing a .522 slugging percentage and a .380 wOBA against them. Insert Carlos Gonzalez, who launched 35 bombs against right-handed pitching last season. Gonzalez's splits against righties at Coors Field are just disgusting. In 196 at bats against righties at home last year, CarGo had a .760 slugging percentage, .418 ISO, and .482 wOBA, along with a 42.7 percent fly ball rate and 38.2 percent hard hit rate. 60.5 percent of CarGo's home runs came while facing a righty at Coors, despite the fact that just 35.4 percent of his total at bats came in that situation. Fade at your own risk.
Jose Bautista ($4,400): The Blue Jays will likely be one of the more popular stacks of the day in a matchup against Steven Wright, who posted a 4.60 SIERA last season, along with some reverse-splits against right-handers. Wright allowed righties to compile a .469 slugging percentage and .330 wOBA against him, while also posting lower strikeout rates and higher walk rates against righties. Bautista posted a .328 ISO at home against righies last season, and is coming off of a "Double-Dong" performance against a righty yesterday. He should be able to continue to add to his impressive numbers against righties tonight.
Edwin Encarnacion ($4,100): There are several appealing first base options today, but the ability to pair Encarnacion with Bautista may give him the edge as the most appealing in tournaments. Encarnacion hit 33 of his 39 homers against righties last season, while slugging .575 with an ISO of .294 and wOBA of .399. He should feast against Steven Wright tonight.
David Ortiz ($4,000): Big Papi got the day off yesterday, but will face off against Marco Estrada today, who boasts the fourth highest 2015 SIERA (4.64) of any pitcher today. Estrada also gave up a robust 53.1 percent fly ball rate when facing lefties, which bodes well for Ortiz, who is three for nine in his career against Estrada, with two homers. Ortiz absolutely demolished right-handed pitching last season, launching 29 of his 37 homers against righties. Ortiz raised his slugging percentage from .426 against lefties to .613 against righties, while increasing his ISO from .195 to .320. His wOBA against righties was 112 points higher than his mark against lefties, and his hard hit rate of 43 percent was a big improvement, too. This game will be played at Rogers Center, too, in which Ortiz has blasted 39 career homers -- the most he's hit in any stadium other than Fenway.
Jose Abreu ($3,600): Abreu will face Josh Tomlin today, who struggled mightily against right-handed batters last season, allowing a .555 slugging percentage, .354 wOBA, and 51.1 percent fly ball rate. That's excellent news for Abreu, who launched 27 of his 30 home runs against right handers and posted a .548 slugging percentage, .240 ISO, .384 wOBA against righties. Abreu is a fine option at first base if you can't afford one of the premier options.
Matt Carpenter ($3,200): Carpenter is coming off of a 21 FanDuel point performance against Julio Teheran, and now gets an even worse right-hander, in Williams Perez. Perez posted a 4.87 SIERA last season, which is the second highest on today's slate. He struggled specifically against lefties, whom he allowed to hit for significantly higher slugging percentage and wOBA than righties, while striking out less often. This all is great news for Carpenter, who is the Cardinals' best left-handed hitter, and performs much better against right-handed pitching. Carpenter saw large increases in his slugging percentage, wOBA, and ISO against right-handers, while also posting a lower strikeout rate and higher walk rate. Carpenter also posted a 40.2 percent hard hit rate against righties. He is a great play tonight atop a Cardinals lineup that could put up a lot of runs against Perez.
Corey Dickerson ($3,200): Dickerson draws a matchup against Vance Worley, who had a 4.28 SIERA last season and struggled specifically against left-handers. Worley allowed lefties to post a .346 wOBA last year, while striking out 15.3 percent and walking 11.9 percent of the lefties he faced. All 10 of Dickerson's homers came against righties last year, and he has already launched two against righties this season. When facing righties last season, Dickerson elevated his slugging percentage from .357 to .595, his ISO from .089 to .280, his wOBA from .291 to .398, and his hard hit rate from 21.6 percent to 42 percent. He's a great value play in all formats at this price.
Logan Morrison ($2,200): Morrison got his first hit of the season last night, and he has a good chance to build off that tonight against Vance Worley. Morrison hit all 17 of his dingers against right-handers last season, and posted some huge splits, especially in the power department. His slugging percentage rose from .246 to .444 against righties, while his ISO rose from .056 to .203. He also posted a 35 percent hard hit rate against righties in 2015. He was especially effective on the road against righties, where he posted a .529 slugging percentage, .274 ISO, 48.1 percent fly ball rate, and 43.6 percent hard hit rate. Considering he is playing at Camden Yards, home to the second highest HR-park factor in 2015, as opposed to the spacious Tropicana Field he calls home, he could definitely be in store for his first homer of 2016. He is a very cheap source of power potential tonight, and will carry a very low ownership, too.