MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Sunday 6/12/16
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. This article is for the main slate, which starts at 1:07 PM ET and includes all 15 games.
Pitchers to Target
Danny Salazar ($10,000 on FanDuel): Salazar had his last start skipped due to shoulder fatigue, so there's a little risk involved here. That risk could make him a slightly-contrarian play today. Salazar has had issues with free passes this year, posting a career-worst 11.9% walk rate. Per usual, he's been filthy when he's in the zone, recording a massive 29.2% strikeout rate. His 12.5% swinging strike rate would be a career-best mark for a full season. Salazar is on the road today against the Los Angeles Angels, who rank 21st in wOBA (.309) and 27th in ISO (.134).
Jon Lester ($11,400): Lester, a lefty, has a lot going for him today, so much so that it may be wise to pivot off him in tournaments. In cash games, though, he's going to be hard to pass up. Lester is taking on the woeful Atlanta Braves at Turner Field. The Braves rank last in wOBA (.271), home runs (25) and ISO (0.89). Lester is putting together another really solid campaign. He owns a 3.33 SIERA, 25.7% strikeout rate and 5.6% walk rate. Over his last two starts -- a stretch of 17 innings -- Lester has allowed one earned run on eight hits while punching out 19 without issuing a walk. He should have his way today against the Braves, whose .583 wOBA against southpaws ranks -- you guessed it -- dead last.
Joe Ross ($8,100): Ross is another pitcher with a nice matchup as the Washington Nationals host the Philadelphia Phillies. The Phillies check in 28th in ISO (.133), 28th in long balls (53) and 29th in wOBA (.281). After throwing the ball well (3.66 SIERA) in a short stay with Washington last season, Ross has struggled in 2016. He is sporting a 4.36 SIERA and 8.3% walk rate. In his brief career, Ross has been much better at home, limiting hitters to a .260 wOBA at Nationals Park. He is our fifth-ranked arm today, and his cheaper price tag will allow you to roster some top-end hitters.
Hitters to Target
Wil Myers ($4,700): It's been a minute since the day's most expensive bat came from the San Diego Padres. Not only is Myers the most expensive hitter, but he's also our top-ranked slugger. A former top prospect, Myers' career has been hampered by injuries, but he's healthy and raking this season. He owns a .357 wOBA with 13 jacks and 8 steals through 260 plate appearances. Today, he faces off with Colorado Rockies' lefty Tyler Anderson, who is making his MLB debut, in a tasty matchup at Coors Field. Myers, owner of a .368 wOBA this season against southpaws, will be hitting in the middle of a lineup with an implied total of 5.74 runs, the day's second-highest mark.
Charlie Blackmon ($4,200): The team with the highest implied run total -- at a whopping 6.76 runs -- is the Colorado Rockies. Blackmon, the Rox' leadoff hitter, is in an ideal position for Colorado's matchup with Padres' left-hander Christian Friedrich, and he checks in as our second-ranked bat. Blackmon is posting career-best numbers across the board, racking up a .366 wOBA with an 8.9% walk rate and 14.0% strikeout rate. Friedrich has been awful this season, recording a 5.16 SIERA and 12.6% walk rate. He's going to have to buck those trends in a big way today to avoid disaster.
Franklin Gutierrez ($2,700): Gutierrez flat out rakes against left-handed pitching, and he will square off this afternoon against Texas Rangers' southpaw Cole Hamels. A year ago, Gutierrez put up a monster .411 wOBA against southpaws, and that clip is at .364 this season. Gutierrez typically hits second in the lineup, when he's plays, which is right in front of mashers Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz. Hamels has had a stellar career, but he's struggled a bit in 2016. He is boasting a 3.87 SIERA and 9.2% walk rate, both of which are career-worst marks.