Yahoo DFS Baseball: Thursday Picks
Yahoo DFS Baseball: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Baseball series.

Not only do we have just nine games across baseball Monday, but just two of them have evening start times. Based on that, let's break down the Yahoo slate that encompasses all of the games throughout the day. Of note, the first game starts at 12:10 p.m. EST.

Pitching

The chalk starting pitcher for this slate could well be the Nationals' Stephen Strasburg ($54). He's been downright dominant with his 2.62 xFIP, 0.98 WHIP and 32 percent strikeout rate. He's been especially hot of late, allowing two runs or fewer in five of his last six starts. Michael Conforto (concussion) may return for this game, but the Mets could be without Robinson Cano (calf). Brandon Nimmo (neck) is also on the injured list while Jeff McNeil has been battling a hamstring injury, so their lineup could be severely compromised.

Another pitcher with a stellar matchup is Detroit's Matthew Boyd ($52). He'll have the luxury of facing a Marlins lineup that has been by far the worst in the league. To put how bad they have been into perspective, their .597 OPS is over 50 points lower than the next worst team. Boyd has already been thriving with a 3.59 xFIP and a 29.9 percent strikeout rate, so look for him to provide another valuable performance.

As we continue to attack bad lineups, the Braves' Kevin Gausman ($38) is in play against the Giants. He didn't get off to the best of starts this season, but Gausman has allowed three runs while recording 10 strikeouts across 12 innings in his last two starts. His 12.8 percent swinging-strike rate is also the highest mark of his career. The Giants' offensive ineptitude has them entering the day with the fourth-fewest runs (182) in baseball.

Key Values/Chalk

The Yankees have scored 28 runs across their first three games against the Orioles, which isn't a surprise considering the Orioles' horrible pitching staff. They'll go with another bad starter in Dylan Bundy, who has recorded a 4.93 xFIP through his first nine starts. His 1.27 WHIP isn't bad, but he's been aided by a .244 BABIP allowed. Flyball pitchers often have such a pattern, though, and he's given up 11 home runs in 46.1 innings, so expect the Yankees to be one of the most popular stacks.

Another team that should be popular is the Red Sox, for their matchup with the Blue Jays. Clayton Richard (knee) is expected to be activated from the IL, but he only threw 48 pitches during his last start at Triple-A. If he starts, he likely won't be able to go too deep into the game. The Blue Jays could also use an opener and then bring in Richard to pitch multiple innings. Either way, Richard is someone to attack due to his 1.42 career WHIP.

Based on the limited options, just going with one of the top offenses could be a sound strategy. That brings the Astros into play against Lucas Giolito, who has improved dramatically with his 3.87 xFIP and 28.6 percent strikeout rate. However, it should be noted that five of his eight starts came against bad lineups in the Royals, Indians and Blue Jays. He faced the Mariners, Yankees and Red Sox in his other three outings, allowing 14 runs (12 earned) across 14.1 innings.

Stacks

Yankees vs. Dylan Bundy (Orioles)

Gleyber Torres (SS - $23), Aaron Hicks (OF - $15), Brett Gardner (OF - $15)

Fade Torres at your own risk. He's absolutely destroyed the Orioles this season, hitting 20-for-43 (.465) with 10 home runs across 11 games. Bundy allowed a .399 wOBA against left-handed hitters last year, which makes Hicks and Gardner intriguing options. Hicks is especially appealing since he had a .367 wOBA against righties last year.

Red Sox vs. Clayton Richard (Blue Jays)

Mookie Betts (OF - $24), Michael Chavis (2B - $24), Steve Pearce (1B - $7)

Richard has allowed a career .354 wOBA against right-handed hitters, so that's the way to go with a Red Sox stack. Betts would obviously be one of the top players for that strategy. Chavis is also a great target having stormed onto the scene with a 152 wRC+. Pearce has been the polar opposite with his 9 wRC+ and 32.1 percent strikeout rate. However, he does have a hit in three straight games and has played up versus lefties well in his career, so he could be a cheap option to consider in tournament play.

Astros vs. Lucas Giolito (White Sox)

Carlos Correa (SS - $21), Michael Brantley (OF - $22), Yuli Gurriel (1B - $11)

Correa has bounced back from a disappointing 2018 campaign to record a 148 wRC+. The biggest difference is that he has a 49.6 percent hard-hit rate after posting a 28.8 percent mark last year. Brantley is off to an even better start with his 149 wRC+ and is an extremely tough out based on his 9.7 percent strikeout rate. Gurriel might not seem like the most obvious Astro to pursue based on all the other big names in their lineup, but he's a viable cheaper option who is 21-for-64 (.328) over his last 16 games.

Rays vs. Adam Plutko (Indians)

Austin Meadows (OF - $24), Brandon Lowe (2B - $19), Ji-Man Choi (1B - $13)

With the myriad of injuries the Indians have suffered to their starting rotation, they've been forced to turn to Plutko to fill one of the voids. He had his own forearm injury to start the season, but he held the Orioles to one run over six innings in his first start. He at least took care of business against a bad lineup, but facing the Rays will be a more difficult task. With lefties recording a .405 wOBA against him during his brief career, this trio could provide value. After missing time with a thumb injury, Meadows has picked up right where he left off by hitting 10-for-33 (.303) with three home runs across his last 10 games.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Mike Barner plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: mbarner, DraftKings: mbarner51.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mike Barner
Mike started covering fantasy sports in 2007, joining RotoWire in 2010. In 2018, he was a finalist for the 2018 FSWA Basketball Writer of the Year award. In addition to RotoWire, Mike has written for Sportsline, Sports Illustrated, DK Live, RealTime Fantasy Sports, Lineup Lab and KFFL.com.
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