6 Daily Fantasy Baseball Studs to Target on 5/24/16
Tuesday’s main slate on FanDuel provides us with a 14-game schedule. As always, when playing any sport on FanDuel, it’s imperative to hit on high-priced players, especially when it comes to pitching.
Let’s take a look at three hitters and three pitchers, who, despite costing a good chunk of change, are worth the investment.
Chris Sale, Chicago White Sox
FanDuel Price: $12,300
Chris Sale is purposefully throwing more strikes, which has resulted in hitters putting the ball in play more often. For most pitchers, a drop in strikeout rate is a bad thing, but it’s been a boon for Sale, making him more efficient and allowing him to work deeper into games. After throwing three complete games in 57 starts over the past two years, Sale already has three complete-game outings in nine starts in 2016.
His strikeout rate of 24.5% is a career low -- although it’s still very good -- but his 4.0% walk rate is a career-best clip. He’s also allowing a meager 23.0% hard-hit rate, which is his best mark since he became a starter in 2012. Very few pitchers have the stuff to throw more strikes and still avoid hard contact. Sale is one of the few.
For today’s home matchup against the Cleveland Indians, Sale is our third-ranked pitcher as we project him to score 35.25 FanDuel points. The Indians -- who rank 16th in home runs and 15th in wOBA -- have an implied total of just 3.03 runs.
David Price, Boston Red Sox
David Price’s 5.53 ERA hints at a rough start to the season, but he is actually throwing the ball as well as he ever has. His 2.90 SIERA is the second-best mark of his career while his 29.4% strikeout rate is a career high. Simply put: Price has been very unlucky. He has been hurt by a .352 BABIP and 59.7% strand rate. He faces the Colorado Rockies tonight in what’s far from an easy matchup, but Price is our second-ranked pitcher. We project him to rack up 37.08 points in the home outing versus the Rockies.
Stephen Strasburg, Washington Nationals
Talent has never been the issue with Stephen Strasburg. Health has been the only kryptonite in his career. When he’s been able to take the mound, he’s been great, posting a 2.77 SIERA over 837 2/3 career innings. Strasburg is dominating again this season, sporting a 2.78 SIERA, career-best 30.9% strikeout rate and 6.6% walk rate. He also owns a career-best 25.2% hard-hit rate. He is our top-ranked arm for his home start against the New York Mets. The Mets have one of the league’s better offenses, but they do own the fifth-highest strikeout rate at 23.8%. Strasburg faced these same Mets in his last start, punching out 10 and allowing just one run over six masterful frames.
Mike Trout, OF, Los Angeles Angels
Ho hum. Another season, another monster year for Mike Trout. Through 196 plate appearances, he owns a .416 wOBA with 10 jacks and 5 steals. Trout is our second-ranked hitter for tonight’s matchup with Texas Rangers’ left-hander Martin Perez. With a 5.08 SIERA, 13.8% strikeout rate and 12.4% walk rate, Perez has been rather horrible this season. The Angels have an implied total of 4.86 runs, the third-highest clip of the day, and Trout figures to play a key role in any big offensive output. We project him to score 14.9 points, although some of his value is zapped by the fact he’s the day’s most expensive hitter.
Ryan Braun, Milwaukee Brewers
One of the best offensive players in the game during his superb career, Ryan Braun owns a monster .391 wOBA for his career. He’s taken things to a new level through 151 plate appearances this year, posting a .422 wOBA with a career-best 14.6% strikeout rate. Braun is our top-ranked hitter for his road matchup against Atlanta Braves’ righty Julio Teheran. We project him to score 15.06 points and give him the second-best odds (0.29) of hitting a home run. In 2015, Braun had a .396 wOBA on the road and a .338 clip at home.
Jose Bautista, Toronto Blue Jays
Jose Bautista is our third-ranker hitter for today’s road matchup against New York Yankees’ right-hander Nathan Eovaldi. Bautista has enjoyed hitting at the new Yankee Stadium. In 51 career games at the park, he has mashed 17 bombs and owns a 1.019 OPS. A righty, Bautista put up a reverse platoon split in 2015, hammering right-handed pitchers to the tune of a .395 wOBA, compared to a .363 wOBA against southpaws. Yankee Stadium ranks second in home run factor, per ESPN’s Park Factors, and Bautista ties Braun with the second-best odds of going deep (0.29). We project him to score 14.2 points today.