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FanDuel MLB DFS Strategy Advice: Wednesday (9/16)

by Carmen Maiorano | @carmsclubhouse | Featured Writer
Sep 16, 2020

Hanser Alberto is a lefty masher, slashing .361/.385/.500 against them this year.

We get an interesting nine-game slate on Wednesday, and it features a ton of ace pitching. This is a good thing because the pitching value plays are few and far between. Since you’ll probably pay up for pitching, we’ve outlined the minimally priced bats that could do some damage.

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Value Plays

Pitcher

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Aaron Civale (CLE) @ CHC $8,600 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Brady Singer (KAN) @ DET $8,000  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Lance McCullers (HOU) vs. TEX $8,100 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ High

 
Civale’s ability to throw five pitches at least nine percent of the time helps him pitch deep into games, as evidenced by going at least six innings in every start this year. He doesn’t have the strikeout rate to be an ace in fantasy baseball, but I expect him to average over a strikeout per inning against a Cubs team that has struck out 25% of the time over the past two weeks.

Singer had a great start in his last outing, striking out eight hitters. He faces the Tigers, who strike out 26% of the time and are the third-worst hitting team in baseball over the last two weeks. Singer has had an uneven rookie campaign, so his risk is a little higher.

McCullers is returning from a nerve issue in his neck, but he shouldn’t be limited in this start. He faces the Rangers, who are the fourth-worst hitting team over the last two weeks, and are 31% worse than league-average over the course of the season. This is a high-risk play that should only be minimally included in lineup builds.

Catcher/ First Base

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Jeimer Candelario (DET) vs. KAN $3,200 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Miguel Sano (MIN) @ CWS $3,000 High

 
It’s a weak slate for value plays at catcher/first base tonight. Salvador Perez, Pedro Severino, and Renato Nunez struggle against lefties, so paying up at this position is a viable strategy.

If you don’t want to do that, Candelario was recently named the AL Player of the Week, and is hitting 38% above the league average against righties.

Sano will face Lucas Giolito, so the matchup is suboptimal. However, Sano has the ability to hit a double-dong against anyone.

Second Base

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Hanser Alberto (BAL) vs. ATL $2,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Wilmer Flores (SFG) @ SEA $3,000 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Donovan Solano (SFG) @ SEA $2,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low

 
Alberto is a lefty masher, slashing .361/.385/.500 against them this year. He also moves up to leadoff against lefties, giving him tremendous run upside. Finally, he will face Cole Hamels fresh off the IL, who will likely be rusty.

Flores has outdone even Alberto against lefties this year, slashing .298/.346/.681 against them. The game is likely to be played in Oracle Park due to the fires in the western part of the US, which actually helps Flores from a power standpoint.

Solano also hits lefties well, sporting a 133 wRC+ against them. He will once again face Nick Margevicius, who gave up seven runs in less than five innings in his most recent start, which was also against the Giants.

Third Base

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Evan Longoria (SFG) @ SEA $2,700 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Maikel Franco (KAN) @ DET $2,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium

 
There are a couple top options that we’ll cover later that I want to have shares of. Otherwise, a Giants stack looks awfully good on this slate! Longoria is slashing .342/.363/.585 against them this year, and has a 131 wRC+ versus lefties in his career.

Franco has been on a tear in September, posting a 148 wRC+. He also has hit lefties hard this year, slashing .379/.419/.482 against them, including a minuscule 13% strikeout rate.

Shortstop

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Francisco Lindor (CLE) @ CHC $3,300 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Gleyber Torres (NYY) vs. TOR $2,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ High
Adalberto Mondesi (KAN) @ DET $2,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ High
Jose Iglesias (BAL) vs. ATL $2,800 ⭐⭐⭐ Low

 
I never would have thought that Lindor would make this list, but here we are. Lindor has had a “down” season by his standards, even though he is six percent better than league average with the bat. Statcast also suggests that he’s been a little unlucky. To solidify this argument, he’s got Jen Lester’s number, slashing .368/.429/.526 in 21 plate appearances.

The stars are aligning for Torres to win a GPP on Wednesday – he didn’t start on Tuesday, plus he’s struggling. However, manager Aaron Boone said on Tuesday that Torres would be playing if it was a playoff game. This suggests he will be back in the lineup soon. He also does well against Tanner Roark, hitting two homers in just eight at-bats against him. He will be minimally rostered against a pitcher whose fastballs are getting murdered this year.

Mondesi has actually hit lefties well this year, despite the terrible season overall. He will almost certainly have a couple strikeouts, but he’s hitting the ball as hard as he ever has. Tarik Skubal has not been impressive in his limited time in the majors, and Mondesi could get ahold of one.

Iglesias hasn’t hit well against Cole Hamels historically, but he historically hasn’t really hit until this year. He has a 141 wRC+ against lefties this year. He’s a great play in cash games, since he’s likely to get on base and score runs, but has no power to speak of.

Outfield

NAME (TEAM) OPPONENT PRICE MATCHUP RISK
Michael Brantley (HOU) vs. TEX $3,200 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Max Kepler (MIN) @ CWS $2,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ High
Adam Duvall (ATL) @ BAL $3,000 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Franmil Reyes (CLE) @ CHC $2,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ High

 
Brantley hits Kyle Gibson well, slashing .346/.452/.500 over 31 plate appearances. He’s almost always a safe cash game play.

Kepler has three bombs and over 1.200 OPS against Giolito in 24 plate appearances. He’s definitely having a worse year than his career year last year, but he’s still above average with the bat.

When Adam Duvall hits homers, he usually hits them three at a time. I like his changes against lefty Keegan Akin. Duvall smokes lefties, slugging .540 against them this year. In Camden Yards, this is the biggest no-brainer play of the night.

Reyes is going to swing into his fair share of strikeouts, but he’s slashed .303/.381/.520 against lefties for his career. If the wind is blowing out in Wrigley, I like his chances of hitting a tater.

5 Studs Worth Their Salary

  • Jacob deGrom (SP – NYM), $11,700: deGrom is slated to win his third straight Cy Young, and the Mets need a big start out of their ace to stay in the playoff hunt. He has a good chance of pitching seven innings with double-digit strikeouts.
  • Dylan Bundy (SP – LAA), $9,800: Bundy gets the Diamondbacks, the third-worst hitting team over the entire season. Like deGrom, Bundy has a chance of going seven innings with double-digit punchouts, but at a cheaper price.
  • Anthony Rendon (3B – LAA), $3,900: Rendon will face lefty Caleb Smith, and has a 155 wRC+ against them this year. He’s the top third baseman in the game, but his price is cheaper than that.
  • Marcell Ozuna (OF – ATL), $3,900: Ozuna has crushed lefties this year to the tune of a 254 wRC+. He’s having a career year by hitting the ball nearly two miles per hour harder than last year.
  • Jose Ramirez (3B – CLE), $3,700: Ramirez has double-digit steals and homers this year, and has a 1.000 OPS against Lester.

4 Notable Players to Fade

  • JT Realmuto (C – PHI), $3,400: Realmuto might be enticing with his price, but he’s slashing .160/.148/.200 against deGrom over 27 plate appearances. Eek.
  • Joey Gallo (OF – TEX), $3,300: Gallo is hitless against McCullers in 11 at-bats with eight strikeouts. Next.
  • Yuli Gurriel (1B – HOU), $2,800: Gurriel’s price is fantastic, but he’s slashing .196/.204/.304 over the last two weeks. His low BABIP suggests he’s been unlucky, but Gurriel is typically a cash game play, and he’s not safe right now.
  • Gerrit Cole (SP – NYY), $11,500: Cole’s fastball just isn’t up to par this year, and the Blue Jays strikeout at a lower rate than the league average. There’s too many great matchups or other great pitchers going to warrant trotting Cole out.

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Carmen Maiorano is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Carmen, check out his archive and personal fantasy blog and follow him @cmaiorano3.

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