This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
FanDuel has plenty of options both expensive and cheap to consider for cash games on the main slate.
The prime target appears to be Aaron Nola ($9,300), who is off to a bit of a slow start. After a 49-point fantasy effort against the Braves to open the season, he's struggled against the Nationals the last two times out with minus-3 and 16 fantasy points. However, against the Mets last season, the Phillies ace went 4-0 with a 2.15 ERA and 46 strikeouts over 37.2 innings. The Mets are striking out at a 24.8 percent rate this season, the 11th-highest mark in the league.
The Indians' Trevor Bauer ($11,200) is worth considering, though his price will leave less than $3,000 to spend on average per batter. He won't have an easy task to go to Seattle and dominate the Mariners, who have scored a league-best 124 runs this season, more than double than that of 12 other teams this season. Due to the cost and matchup, DFS players probably should go in another direction for cash, but in GPPs, he's always in play considering his high upside.
Any guess which pitcher comes into the main slate with the highest FPPG average? Luis Castillo ($8,800) is the correct answer. The Reds righty has averaged 47.33 FPPG over his first three starts. He'll draw his toughest test of the season thus far, taking on the Dodgers in Los Angeles on Monday night. The Dodgers have the highest wOBA against right-handed pitching (.385 wOBA) and the lowest strikeout rate (15.8 percent), so Castillo is another pitcher best left for tournaments instead of cash games.
The final hurler who should be mentioned for a few different reasons is the Cubs' Yu Darvish ($7,100). He's extremely cheap compared to his pricing in the past and has arguably the most ideal matchup of the main slate. The Marlins strike out the most of any team against right-handed pitching (30.6 percent), and their team wOBA (.275) against that handedness is the sixth-worst in baseball. Using Darvish will allow for almost any stack in GPPs, and he's worth considering for cash based on the matchup.
With Ervin Santana on the mound for the White Sox, it seems like a good idea to get some players from the Royals into a lineup. Whit Merrifield ($4,300) makes a lot of sense given how consistent he's been this season, scoring at least 9.2 fantasy points in 13 of his 15 games. He has the power-speed skill set that's so valuable in fantasy.
A cheaper outfield option is Toronto's Randal Grichuk ($2,600). He should be hitting in a good RBI spot against a left-handed pitcher (Martin Perez), the handedness he had a .342 wOBA against last season. Over his career, Perez has allowed a .352 wOBA to right-handed hitters, which helps the case for choosing Grichuk.
Shortstop might be the toughest position to get right every night with finding someone who will put up points and not break the bank with the salary cap. Freddy Galvis ($3,300) has been one of the better surprises on the Blue Jays, and the move to the American League seems to be working. He's had eight games of at least 15.2 fantasy points (out of 16 games) and has a favorable matchup against Perez.
If there's the feeling something isn't right with Darvish, using Miami's Brian Anderson ($2,900) at the hot corner would be wise. Anderson appears to have gotten on track on this last homestand, homering and stealing a base in each of his last two games. He had three hits and three walks in the two games prior to those last two contests, validating he's turned the corner at the plate.
Garrett Hampson ($2,300) is a good punt at second base when looking for some salary cap relief. With the Rockies' injuries, he knows he's going to be in the lineup on a regular basis and may be finding a rhythm. Proof? He has scored at least nine fantasy points in two of his past three contests and has avoided a goose egg in each of his past seven.
Angels first baseman Justin Bour ($2,900) seems like a great road play against Shelby Miller. For his career, Bour has a .356 wOBA against right-handed pitching, and Arlington is a great place to hit.
I've already mentioning using the Royals against Santana should be a great stack, so let's start there: Merrifield, Adalberto Mondesi ($4,300), Alex Gordon ($3,900) and another Royal to build a lineup with Darvish. Also try using those hitters with another starting pitcher in the same price tag such as the Rockies' Jeff Hoffman ($6,300) or the Cardinals' Dakota Hudson ($6,300).
Trevor Richards has posted three straight quality starts but gets his toughest test of the season welcoming the Cubs to town. Richards has been a bit wild (10 walks in 18 innings), and the patient Cubs hitters should be able to take advantage of that. Think about using a stack with some combination of Anthony Rizzo ($4,000), Javier Baez ($4,200), Jason Heyward ($4,100), Kris Bryant ($4,000) and Kyle Schwarber ($3,200).
One of the more under-the-radar stacks will be the Rockies taking on Joey Lucchesi in San Diego. The ballpark should keep their ownership low despite the lineup being filled with lefty killers. Using Trevor Story ($3,500), Nolan Arenado ($3,700), Ian Desmond ($2,300) and either Mark Reynolds ($2,500) or Hampson could prove to be the winner in a big GPP.