Welcome to the Tuesday edition of our daily picks for FanDuel's MLB contests. Today the baseball world wakes up with Josh Hamilton heading back to Texas, NL pitchers complaining about having to hit, and the Washington Nationals in complete disarray (4 more errors last night!). If you are more interested in the exciting things going on inside the diamond, today we get Kershaw-Bumgarner II (way better than Mayweather-Pacquiao IMO), the Mets getting back on track, and another weird schedule.
Again for today, there are two games that start at the unusual time of 6:10 ET, Toronto at Boston & Kansas City @ Cleveland. However, for Tuesday we are taking a different approach, only targeting the main slate of games (a.k.a. where the big money is). And so, there are 13 games to choose from, a nice number of aces, and plenty of chances to cash in.
Wednesday, April 28
Locks: 7:05 ET (Rays @ Yankees)
Yesterday presented a big contingency, as it was announced that the Orioles-White Sox game would be postponed, and we had many players from the Orioles as top picks for the day. Also, Ryan Braun mysteriously sat again, and so a ton of adjustments had to be made.
My final lineup saw all Orioles and Braun removed, subbing them mostly with the “Others to Consider” options that could be fit into the budget. In the end, disaster was averted by James Shields' big day (17 points despite not getting the win), sub Brian McCann hitting a homer, and sub JD Martinez posting a solid game.
Yesterday showed just how attention to details can pay off big time in daily fantasy, and why it is always better to build your roster as close to game time as possible.
The forecast calls for a ton of friendly weather all around, as the only game that should have some threat will take place in Atlanta. Even still, the projections call for rain chances to be strong around 10pm, near the game's closure. Outside of this game, stable conditions will prevail, though it may get a bit windy at Yankee Stadium and Oakland.
However, it would be wise to keep a close eye on the Baltimore situation. The social unrest that forced authorities to cancel Monday's game is not under complete control yet, and there is no guarantee that today's game will take place. It's a sad, dire situation – and baseball is probably the least important thing in the city right now. The game could be moved to Nationals Park, where the game conditions would be really different.
Biggest Money Line Favorites
Top-heavy options abound today, with several mismatches headlining Tuesday. The Reds (vs Brewers) and Cardinals (vs Phillies) lead the way at -200, while the Dodgers and Kershaw are a baffling -170 over the Giants. A step below, the A's (vs Angels) and Padres (vs Astros) stand at -150 to win. The biggest road favorite of the day is Detroit, -140 at Minnesota.
Again, over/under lines are all over the place, from 6.5 to 9 runs. Expect another diverse day, with probably more than a handful of elite pitching performances to balance out some high-scoring affairs.
Pitcher – Michael Wacha ($8,400)
In 16 starts at home for his career, Wacha is 8-1 with a 2.24 ERA. He has never faced the Phillies, but it shouldn't be a problem as they are, by far, the worst offense in the league. Wacha has started the season on a roll, with 3 wins, a 1.33 ERA, albeit with a below-average K-rate. Today presents the perfect matchup to continue this streak, and at a very good value price.
Outside of Wacha, Sonny Gray and Johnny Cueto should be excellent options, as well. Gray has made it a habit to dominate the AL West, and is 3-1 with a 2.45 ERA in 6 starts versus the Angels. Just five days ago, he produced a 17-point effort in Anaheim. Also, Cueto has dominated Milwaukee for years, with 8 wins and a 2.92 ERA in 17 starts. He has started the season with 32 K's in 29 innings, and the Brewers are struggling mightily.
Others to Consider: Cueto ($10,400), Gray ($8,900), Tyson Ross ($8,400)
Catcher – Yadier Molina ($2,600)
To stack today, the Orioles should be a good option if their game is played. Playing it safe, the Reds face Kyle Lohse, the Mariners get Ross Detwiler, and the Cardinals get a rookie making his debut, while the Dbacks get Kyle Kendrick. Mix and match accordingly.
After an injury scare that kept him out a couple of games, Molina returned to the lineup yesterday and should remain there regularly. He will never be spectacular at the plate, but he is cheap and should see some chances today as the Cards face a rookie.
Others to Consider: Stephen Vogt ($3,100), Kevin Plawecki ($2,300)
First Base – Joey Votto ($4,100)
Votto has been slumping a bit lately after his monster start, as he hasn't produced better than a 2.5-point game in a week. However, today he gets a chance to regain his form against a pitcher who is really battling. Kyle Lohse has allowed 8 hits in 27 career at-bats to Votto, and has already allowed 5 homers in 20 innings to start the year.
Others to Consider: Paul Goldschmidt ($4,500), Matt Adams ($2,800)
Second Base – Kolten Wong ($2,700)
Just another logical stacking option for the Cardinals, as Wong possesses enough power and speed to be a factor in any game. Wong has hit 10 of his 13 career homers at home, and 33 of his 48 RBI have come there.
Others to Consider: Jimmy Paredes ($3,300), Alexander Guerrero ($3,000)
Third Base – Kris Bryant ($3,500)
Even while Pittsburgh's lefty Jeff Locke has never presented an extreme platoon split, he tends to struggle against power righties, as evidenced by the 31 homers he's allowed to them out of the 36 total he has over his career. Bryant is still searching for his first long ball, but he continues to be patient and deliver in many ways for the Cubs, and he has averaged 4.85 PPG in 5 contests versus Pittsburgh.
Others to Consider: Matt Carpenter ($4,000), Todd Frazier ($3,500)
Shortstop – Zack Cozart ($2,300)
Cozart has gone a decent 8-for-32 against Lohse, and has been impressive so far this season against the Brewers. In 5 games against Milwaukee, Cozart has averaged 6.1 PPG, looking like a far better hitter than what his track record suggests. At this very low price, he is a nice gamble to keep stacking Reds.
Outfield – Nelson Cruz ($5,000), Matt Holliday ($3,400), Anthony Gose ($2,900)
The very expensive Cruz gets to return to Arlington for a favorable matchup, as he is killing southpaws with ease. So far this season, he is 6-for-12 against lefties, with 4 homers and 3 walks. It seems as if it will be money well invested.
Holliday may not have the bat speed of yore, but he remains a steady presence in St. Louis' lineup. In 8 of his last 10 games, he has produced at least 1.5 FanDuel points, and with no games producing negative numbers. To finish with the Cardinal stack, he looks like a very good option.
Finally, Gose is due to become the primary center fielder for Detroit now that Rajai Davis is injured, and he finally seems to find a way to combine his monster speed with a playable bat. He is the table-setter for the mighty Tiger offense, and at this price he deserves a look.
Others to Consider: Adam Jones ($4,100), Matt Kemp ($4,000), Jorge Soler ($3,200)