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FanDuel DFS MLB Strategy Advice: Sunday (9/20)

by Josh Shepardson | @BChad50 | Featured Writer
Sep 20, 2020

Michael Conforto holds the power edge amongst the trio of Mets outfielders who are all great plays today.

A couple of value pitchers comprise all of the pitching options touted in this space. They’re alone because paying up for hitting is my preferred way to attack Sunday’s main slate. In addition to loving a number of high-priced hitters, a bunch of value options at hitter have tantalizing five-star matchups, too.

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Value Plays

Pitcher

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Josh Lindblom (MIL) vs. KC $6,700 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ High
Jose Urquidy (HOU) vs. ARI $6,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 
Just a pair of pitchers with sub-$7,000 salaries are on my radar for usage today. Lindblom’s 5.26 ERA through 37.2 innings this year is unsightly, but it’s out of whack from his solid-if-unspectacular 3.94 SIERA. The veteran righty has struck out a fantasy-friendly 29.8% of the batters he’s faced this year, and he has a five-star matchup with a Royals offense that ranks tied for 22nd in wRC+ (90) against righties and has struck out 24.2% of the time against them, per FanGraphs.

Picking between these two, I’d prefer Urquidy. He’s basically pulling the reverse of Lindblom with a 2.70 ERA and 5.75 SIERA, but the sample is only 16.2 innings. The young righty emerged as a surprisingly good starter for the Astros last year, but his season only recently started because he missed time with Covid-19. He was sharp as a tack in his last outing, holding the Rangers to just one run on three hits, zero walks, and seven strikeouts in seven innings. He has another favorable draw today facing a Diamondbacks offense that ranks 25th in wRC+ (87) against righties this year — and that includes a significant part of the season with Starling Marte on their roster before they traded him and Ketel Marte healthy and not residing on the IL, like he presently is. The Astros are sizable -200 favorites, according to the BettingPros consensus line, adding to the appeal of using Urquidy.

Catcher/First Base

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Joey Votto (CIN) vs. CWS $3,000 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Yuli Gurriel (HOU) vs. ARI $2,600 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Daniel Vogelbach (MIL) vs. KC $2,400 ⭐⭐ High

 
Righty Dylan Cease has been hammered by left-handed batters for a .523 SLG and .376 wOBA this year. That sets up favorably for Votto in his homer-friendly digs today. Votto’s tapping back into power we haven’t seen in recent years with a .230 ISO in 2020, and he’ll get a lift from the 1.186 park factor for homers at Great American Ball Park you can see on our MLB Park Factors landing page. Gurriel isn’t anything special, but his .205 ISO and 121 wRC+ against southpaws since 2017 are rock solid, and he’s a matchup-driven suggestion.

Second Base

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Robinson Cano (NYM) vs. ATL $3,300 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Jose Altuve (HOU) vs. ARI $3,100 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Mike Brosseau (TB) @ BAL $2,600 ⭐⭐⭐ Medium

 
Cano and Altuve both have five-star matchups. Altuve’s the second right-handed-hitting Astro to appear in this space, so it’s the perfect time to highlight Madison Bumgarner’s struggles — putting it mildly — with righties this year. The 118 righties he’s faced have thumped him for 11 homers, a .725 SLG, and .458 wOBA.

As for Cano, he draws a righty, Kyle Wright, who’s actually been more giving to lefties than Bumgarner’s been to righties. Wright’s coughed up a .532 OBP, .694 SLG, and .510 wOBA to the 62 of them he’s faced. For Cano’s part, he’s been quite good this year as well, turning back the clock and ripping off a 143 wRC+ in 2020.

Third Base

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Alex Bregman (HOU) vs. ARI $3,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Edwin Rios (LAD) @ COL $3,400 ⭐⭐⭐ High
Jeff McNeil (NYM) vs. ATL $2,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 
Surprise, surprise. Yet another righty from the Astros and a lefty from the Mets. Bregman’s one of the premier lefty-mashers in the game with a .420 OBP, .293 ISO, and 179 wRC+ against them since 2017. McNeil reached The Show in 2018, and he’s been a thorn in the side of righties with a .394 OBP, .206 ISO, and 150 wRC+ in 709 plate appearances. Both are strong options in their five-star matchups. As for Rios, he’s the first — but not the last — player from the game at Coors Field to get the nod. He’s not a lock to be in the lineup given the logjam of talent at the positions he plays, but he’s made the most of his 66 plate appearances this year with a .339 ISO and 129 wRC+.

Shortstop

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Carlos Correa (HOU) vs. ARI $2,600 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 
My favorite shortstop for today’s slate is below, but Correa’s not too far behind when factoring in their big gap in salary. In 359 plate appearances against lefties since 2017, Correa is responsible for a .415 OBP, .170 ISO, and 150 wRC+. The biggest fly in the ointment when comparing Correa with my forthcoming favorite option at shortstop is Correa’s lineup spot. He frequently hits sixth or seventh in the lineup. If, however, he’s bumped up in the order today for whatever reason, he’d basically be the 1 or 1A option at the position as opposed to the second pick.

Outfield

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Dominic Smith (NYM) vs. ATL $3,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Michael Conforto (NYM) vs. ATL $3,400 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Brandon Nimmo (NYM) vs. ATL $3,200 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Franmil Reyes (CLE) @ DET $2,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Jesse Winker (CIN) vs. CWS $2,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 
An entire outfield of Mets left-handed hitters is included in the table above, and all have the credentials for usage against Wright’s aforementioned struggles with left-handed batters. Out of the trio, though, Conforto’s my favorite. His .390 OBP against righties since 2017 is a bit below Nimmo’s .405 OBP during that time frame, but Conforto holds the power edge with a .247 ISO compared to Nimmo’s .218 ISO.

Reyes and Winker round out the suggestions in their own five-star matchups. Matthew Boyd has been drilled by right-handed batters for a .635 SLG and .422 wOBA this year. Reyes has the thunderous pop to add to his season-long woes with a .215 ISO against lefties since reaching the majors in 2018. As for Winker, he’s raking this year with a .293 ISO and 145 wRC+.

5 Studs Worth Their Salary

  • Mookie Betts, LAD ($4,800):
  • Cody Bellinger, LAD ($4,300):
  • Corey Seager, LAD ($4,300): The game’s over/under total today is 12.5 runs and the Dodgers are -175 favorites. They’re projected to hang runs in bunches, and I’m not one to disagree with that expectation.
  • Christian Yelich, MIL ($4,200): Rarely can a player of Yelich’s caliber be a contrarian pick when he has the platoon advantage, but that’s the case today with him facing a righty at home and the outfield overflowing with top-shelf talent in great matchups and hitting conditions.
  • George Springer, HOU ($3,700): Many of Springer’s teammates are featured above, but he’s priced o land down here. He owns a .383 OBP, .229 ISO, and 143 wRC+ against lefties since 2017.

5 Notable Players to Fade

  • Carlos Carrasco, CLE ($9,900)
  • Deivi Garcia, NYY ($8,900): Fading the duo of Carrasco and Garcia is primarily a product of strong value options at pitcher, but it’s also due to my belief you’ll need to spend up for the top hitters to finish at or near the top of GPPs today.
  • Trevor Story, COL ($4,400)
  • Charlie Blackmon, COL ($3,900):
  • Nolan Arenado, COL ($3,800): Suggesting fading the Rockies at home could bite me in the behind, but Tony Gonsolin’s a tough matchup. As the section above shows, I’d rather stack the Dodgers at Coors Field than the hosts, and I’m also infatuated with the Astros as a stacking option, leaving the Rockies in the fade section.

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Josh Shepardson is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Josh, check out his archive and follow him @BChad50.

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