RotoWire Partners

FanDuel MLB: Saturday Value Plays

Chris Bennett

Bennett covers baseball, college football and college basketball for RotoWire. Before turning to fantasy writing, he worked in scouting/player development for the Atlanta Braves and Montreal Expos. He's also a fan of the ACC.

First, the bad, or more challenging news: Saturdayís main slate features only six games, so the pickings could be rather slim. The good news, however, is we have Yankee bats and a game in Coors Field to include in our lineup. And with no pitcher checking in at five figures, there should be plenty of salary cap available to grab some boppers.

For those interested, weíve started an MLB DFS Slack channel for paid RotoWire subscribers. (There is a season-long one as well.) To join those channels, e-mail support@rotowire.com.

PITCHER

Alex Wood, LAD vs. SDP ($8,700): This seems like the obvious choice, at least for cash games. Wood doesnít come with a ton of upside, and he hasnít gone more than six frames since his first start of the season. But the Padres offense is woeful, carrying a .299 wOBA and 91 wRC+ while fanning 25.5 percent of the time. The Dodgers are huge favorites, and this game has a total of only seven runs. Itís going to be a very chalky play, but the only reason Iíd avoid Wood is strictly rooted in the likely high ownership.

GPP Fade: Jose Quintana, CHC vs. SFG ($8,300): Quintana has been very Jekyll and Hyde, virtually alternating dominant performances with implosions. The Giants arenít a great offense, ranking 15th with a .316 wOBA against lefties, but Quintana boasts a 6.30 home ERA compared to a 3.18 ERA on the road. Heck, maybe that volatility make him the ideal tournament gamble, but I simply donít trust him enough to pay up for, even in a limited slate.

Cheap GPP Consideration: Jordan Lyles, SDP at LAD ($7,200): This spot was a coin flip between Lyles and Sonny Gray, but the Angels are hitting righties much better than the Dodgers are, and Lyles carries a strikeout rate nearly seven-percent greater than Gray. Weíve touched on the low total in this contest, and neither team seems overly capable of single-handedly reaching that number, giving Lyles a reasonable chance to possibly match Woodís output while saving $1,500.

CATCHER/FIRST BASE

Yasmani Grandal, LAD vs. SDP ($3,100): We just spent two paragraphs highlighting both pitchers in this tilt, so why not lead the bats section of this column there as well. This matchup is easily the obvious target for pitching, so itís great spot to find low-owned bats with upside. Grandal leads the Dodgers with a .376 wOBA and 144 wRC+ against righties, and his .262 ISO suggests power potential as well. Teammate Max Muncy ($2,600) is also very appealing if heís in the lineup.

SECOND BASE

Jose Pirela, SDP at LAD ($2,600): I apparently just canít quit this game. My interest in Pirela is mainly that Iíd consider punting the keystone in lineups Saturday in an effort to spend freely elsewhere. The top five options at this position all come in with solid matchups and/or good form, so I have no issue using any of them; except that they are all priced at $3,900 or higher. The position falls off the cliff afterward, and Pirellaís .318 wOBA against lefties isnít going to excite many. But heís shown signs of life lately, being shut out just twice while reaching double-digit points three times since May 11, owning a 40 percent hard-hit rate in that stretch, so he could provide return at a modest price.

THIRD BASE

Eugenio Suarez, CIN at COL ($4,400): Suarez is coming off of a heater of a series against the Pirates, going four for 12 with two doubles, a homer and six RBI. Heís been virtually automatic against lefties, posting a .603 wOBA, 294 wRC+ and .556 ISO. All of this doesnít factor in the Coors Field proposition, and that heís cheaper than two others at the hot corner. Suarez looks like the cornerstone of any and all lineups Saturday.

SHORTSTOP

Andrelton Simmons, LAA at NYY ($3,700): Sonny Gray has been very susceptible to righties in Yankee Stadium, allowing a .424 wOBA with just an 11.8 percent strikeout rate. Simmons is certainly priced based on his current form, boasting a .378 wOBA against righties, second only to Mike Trout among right-handed bats in this lineup. Heís likely due some regression given his career .304 clip against same-handed arms, but I also think casual managers donít recognize the current pace the defensive-minded Simmons is on.

I really like the stability Jean Segura ($3,300) provides in cash games. He just continues to pile up hits and has to have one of the most volatile price historyís out there, having checked in north of $4,000 just four days ago.


OUTFIELD

Charlie Blackmon, COL vs. CIN ($4,800): This is a bit of a high tag to pay for a player that is scuffling a bit at the plate. But the entire Rockies lineup seems to be struggling of late, and Blackmon still boasts a team-high .378 wOBA and .282 ISO against righties. Redsí starter Tyler Mahle has been hit very hard by left-handed bats to the tune of a .409 wOBA, compared to just a .290 number against righties, giving me some confidence Blackmon can justify his price and break out of his funk.

Ian Happ, CHC at CIN ($3,400): Happ is too hot to not play at this point, especially at a sub-$3,500 tag. He owns an eye-popping .461 wOBA, 197 wRC+ and .450 ISO against righties in the month of May. I may not need to go on, but itís worth noting Giantsí starter Chris Stratton has allowed 21 runs over his last five starts, spanning 22.0 innings.

Max Kepler, MIN at SEA ($3,200): On most nights, I likely wouldnít fully buy in to Keplerís current .449 wOBA and 186 wRC+ against lefties, as they far exceed his career production prior to 2018. But Marinersí starter Wade LeBlanc also appears to be an anomaly, allowing a career .372 wOBA to same-handed bats against a .319 number to righties.

UTILITY

Tucker Barnhart, CIN at COL ($3,100): I was hoping for a little more cost savings here, but Barnhart looks worth paying for at this tag regardless. He trails only the aforementioned Suarez amongst Red bats against lefties, sporting a .447 wOBA and 188 wRC+. His spot in the two-hole doesnít hurt the appeal with the previously noted high run total.

Giants bats make for an intriguing contrarian, and major stacking opportunity against Jose Quintana, with Nick Hundley ($2,200), Buster Posey ($2,700) and Evan Longoria ($2,800) leading the way.

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.