5 Daily Fantasy Baseball Studs for 4/20/16
In daily fantasy baseball, pitchers are the cornerstone of your lineups. It’s important to spend wisely at the position; if your pitchers fail, your lineup is doomed.
In any slate, it’s also important to select the correct top-priced hitters. Luckily for us, some top bats have excellent matchups today.
Let’s take a look at the FanDuel studs for today’s main slate.
Madison Bumgarner, San Francisco Giants
FanDuel Price: $10,800
There may be some concerns with Madison Bumgarner, as he’s been less than stellar in his first three starts of 2016.
He hasn’t pitched more than six innings in any of his starts, with two starts lasting just five innings each.
But don’t fret! His 2016 strikeouts per nine innings (K/9) mark of 11.81 is actually three full strikeouts higher than his career average of 8.73.
He has an unusually high BABIP of .349 and an astronomical 20 percent home run-to-fly ball rate, more than double his career average of 9.5 percent.
Aside from his flu game on opening day when he walked five Brewers, he’s allowed just two walks in his last two starts.
The only concerning number may be his 2016 ground ball rate of just 32.6 percent, which marks a four-year downward trend since his 47.9 rate in 2012.
Tonight, Bumgarner returns to AT&T Park for a home start, where his numbers were significantly better a year ago. In 2015 at home, he posted a 2.81 xFIP, 30 percent strikeout rate, and a .241 wOBA against.
Bumgarner is a -135 Vegas favorite tonight with a low total of 6.5 runs. In a slate full of questionable pitching options, Bumgarner is the best choice.
Chris Archer, Tampa Bay Rays
FanDuel Price: $11,000
You could almost copy and paste Madison Bumgarner’s analysis above for Chris Archer’s 2016 season.
Despite enjoying a career high in K/9 thus far -- 13.50 compared to a career average of 9.08 -- Archer has suffered from terrible luck in the home run-to-fly ball and BABIP departments.
Despite producing a career-high 47.7 ground ball percentage thus far this season, Archer is the victim of an unheard of .436 BABIP! How big of an outlier is that number?
Here’s a look at the BABIP of all starting pitchers in 2016 and where Archer stands:
Expect that number to regress to league average very quickly.
His xFIP of 2.81 so far in 2016 is also lower than his 2015 season where he posted a 3.01 xFIP.
Being the highest priced pitcher on the board and producing an average of just 20 FanDuel points per game over his last two starts, Archer will likely experience low ownership in tournaments tonight.
Combined with the likelihood of his luck returning to normal, it makes him an elite GPP option.
Chris Davis, 1B, Baltimore Orioles
FanDuel Price: $4,300
Last season, 29 of Chris Davis’ 47 home runs came at Camden Yards. With a short porch in right field, this ballpark was made for lefty power hitters like Davis.
In 2015, Chris Davis was third in league in ISO versus right-handed pitching with a monstrous mark of .350. He’s continued his righty-mashing ways in 2016, too. So far this season, he’s posted a .484 ISO with 5 home runs in just 12 games.
Tonight, he’ll face R.A. Dickey, who he’s seen 26 times in his Major League career.
Even if you don’t take much stock in batter versus pitcher history, seeing a knuckleball pitcher that many times is important given the lack of knuckleballers in the league.
All things considered, Davis is the most likely hitter to go yard tonight, according to our projections.
Corey Dickerson, OF, Tampa Bay Rays
FanDuel Price: $3,100
Corey Dickerson has silenced many of his “his power won't play away from Coors Field” doubters thus far in 2016, already smashing three home runs versus right-handed pitching.
But if you look at his numbers from last year, you would know that -- at least versus righties -- his power will play anywhere.
In that situation in 2015, he posted a .240 ISO, a .350 wOBA, and a tremendous 43.5 hard hit percentage.
Tonight, Dickerson will be eyeing the shortest right-field fence in baseball at Fenway Park versus a pitcher in Rick Porcello who allowed a .196 ISO and 16 of his 25 home runs to left-handed hitters in 2015.
At just $3,100, Dickerson is a stud that you can easily fit into any lineup.
Ryan Braun, OF, Milwaukee Brewers
FanDuel Price: $4,200
Braun killed left-handed pitching last year with a .408 wOBA, and his hard hit rate jumped to 40 percent, up from 35.1 percent versus right-handed pitching.
While it’s good news for Braun that Milone offered a .331 wOBA to righties last season, the key to this matchup will be Milone's changeup.
Milone threw his changeup 24.75 percent of the time last season, and opposing batters only managed a meager .100 ISO on that pitch.
However, according to FanGraphs, Braun totaled a 1.71 runs above average per 100 pitches versus changeups last season. This was Braun’s second-best pitch type, behind the slider at 2.08 runs above average per 100 pitches.
If Milone looks to rely on his changeup, Braun’s history shows that he can win that matchup.