This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
Tuesday's main slate gets going at 6:40 pm ET, a little earlier than we're accustomed to, and includes a robust 11-game slate (although FanDuel has yet to pull Baltimore-Miami from the docket).
It's an absolutely brutal slate on the bump. Walker Buehler ($10,500) is the only five-figure option, and there's no way he can be considered here. Not only is he facing a potent Astros lineup, he's expected to work only 3-4 innings, zapping any form of stability or upside.
The next tier presents as high risk, low reward. Trusting Jeff Samardzija ($8,100), especially in cash lineups, never sits well even with a positive park factor on his side, and with the Padres' bats having already produced 21 runs in four games, he's a pass for me. Homer Bailey ($8,000) allowed three long balls in three innings in an exhibition tuneup, and while I don't love the Cardinals offense, there's no upside here in a hitters park.
The safest, and I'll use that loosely, options appear to be a matchup between Kyle Gibson ($8,200) and Merrill Kelly ($7,800). The Rangers' new ballpark is proving to be a pitchers park, and the two teams have combined to score 14 runs in seven total contests.
We saw how potent the Atlanta lineup can be Sunday in their 14-run explosion against the Mets, but they've scored 10 total runs in their three other contests, striking out 53 times overall (33.8 percent). I'm not sure how deep Yonny Chirinos ($7,400) is going to work, but Atlanta's proclivity to whiff may make that moot.
On a slate that presents this nastily, punting on the mound isn't the worst idea. As such, whomever the Royals decide to turn to could be the answer against a Tigers offense that struck out a whopping 43.8 percent of the time in their season opening series at Cincinnati, so long as it's not a committee approach. Milwaukee's Josh Lindblom ($6,100) doesn't have much perceived strikeout upside, but the Pirates offense isn't one to shy away from, especially at this price, having a meager .093 ISO and 4.8 percent walk rate through three games. That suggests Lindblom would need to be singled to death to fail. He should be staked to decent run support as well squaring off against Derek Holland ($6,400).
Despite the lack of pitching, there doesn't appear to be a clear, must-own player to build your offense around Tuesday, with only eight bats priced at 4k or higher. The closest appears to be the ageless Nelson Cruz ($4,000), who is off to a 7-for-13 start with three homers, 10 RBI and seven runs scored. His home splits against righties were his worst of the four scenarios last year, but that's not enough to scare me off.
The presence of Framber Valdez ($7,000) is unlikely to force owners to pivot from the Dodgers lineup, particularly in cash formats. Cody Bellinger ($4,400) and Mookie Betts ($4,200) have been slow out of the gates, but this looks like a get-right spot for them. Justin Turner ($3,200) has seven hits in four games, and posted a .385 wOBA against lefties last year. For this price, he looks as safe as they come.
Christian Yelich ($4,400) is also off to a slow start, and may be overlooked Tuesday given the LvL matchup, but Yelich posted a .383 wOBA, .277 ISO and 46.3 percent hard hit rate against same-handed arms last year.
The Mets haven't confirmed their plans on the mound, but it looks like it will be a bullpen game led by lefty David Peterson ($5,500). Red Sox bats outside of J.D. Martinez ($4,100) have been cold. That does set up some bargains, but a stack might be too optimistic. Xander Bogaerts ($3,400) and Rafael Devers ($3,400) are priced far below their potential.
The Rays showed Monday how potent their lineup can be, but the problem from a DFS perspective is there's no clear top target with Austin Meadows ($3,600) still sidelined. Kyle Wright ($7,500) hasn't shown effective control/command in the majors yet, so grabbing a Ray or two seems prudent, and there's no cost concerns. Ji-Man Choi ($2,700) hitting at/near the top of the order works, while Hunter Renfroe ($2,500) homered twice Monday and brings power upside.
On the other side of the field, Atlanta's Dansby Swanson ($2,800) has hit safely in every game to date, homered in two straight and has a ridiculous 66.7 percent hard hit rate. Simply put, he's barreling balls regularly.
The slate is deep enough as is, but if FanDuel adds the second game of the Indians-White Sox doubleheader, there's surely to be some appealing bats, particularly on the Cleveland side against lefty Carlos Rodon, who is making his first appearance since May 1, 2019.
Stacks to Consider
McNeil may be an outlier in a LvL matchup, but he posted a respectable .356 wOBA against southpaws last year, and Hall probably won't work too deep. The price points here are phenomenal, which should allow for spending on as many top-priced bats elsewhere as your heart desires. Cespedes is a power upside play, as is Alonso, who posted a .347 ISO and 48.9 percent hard hit rate against lefties last season.
While Mahle allowed only a 36.3 percent hard hit rate to lefties last year, it still led to a .364 wOBA and 2.37 HR/9. The suggestions here are strictly based on the LvR matchups, and we're assuming/hoping Mahle isn't on the list of pitchers who will only work 3-4 innings by design. Rizzo's early-season scoring has been heavily home run based, whereas Schwarber's has been more from regularly reaching base; a role reversal perhaps, but they both come fairly priced and sit atop the lineup. Happ isn't a traditional stacking option given his lower slot in the lineup, but he's off to a hot start backing up a solid spring/summer, and looks to be developing as a post-hype prospect.