MLB DFS Picks: Yahoo Plays and Strategy for Saturday, May 6
It's the first Saturday of May. And if the weather here in Detroit is any indication, we're heading for some nice conditions that we normally associate with baseball season. There are eight MLB games starting at 7:10 p.m. EDT or later. Onto the DFS recommendations!
Spencer Strider, ATL vs. BAL ($60): It's a tough night for pitchers, so my rationale for selections on Saturday are betting on talent and not sweating the matchups. That begins with Strider, who has posted a career 2.00 FIP while striking out 13.79 batters per nine innings. He's already an ace, and Atlanta doesn't skimp on the offensive support. Baltimore has improved, but I'll still go with Strider at home.
Dustin May, LAD at SD ($40): There are many who see real upside in May. His strikeout rate is concerning, but he's registered a 3.15 ERA through six starts and a 3.24 during his career. The Padres have picked it up offensively after a slow start, but Petco is still friendly to pitchers and I think there's a good chance May gets a win with Blake Snell struggling.
Alex Cobb, SF vs. MIL ($40): The last couple of years, Cobb's FIP has been notably better than his ERA. This year, his ERA is at 2.43 with a 3.00 FIP, but you wouldn't quibble with the latter. Cobb doesn't allow home runs and generates plenty of ground balls, as he's on pace to have a ground-ball percentage over 60 for the second straight year. Milwaukee's offense is built around hitters who swing for the fences, so this matchup is to Cobb's advantage.
Does Bobby Witt ($22) take walks? Nope! Is he a DFS darling anyway? You bet! Last season, he recorded 20 home runs and 30 stolen bases with five and eight of each in 2023. Ken Waldichuk, a lefty, has allowed 2.06 homers per nine innings over his career while righties have hit .298 against.
I don't know why Marcus Semien ($20) has struggled so much at home since joining the Rangers, but he's been solid on the road. The .285 average is high for him, but the five homers and four steals aren't surprising. Reid Detmers is striking out more batters, but he still lists a 4.85 ERA through five starts.
It seems Nick Castellanos ($19) is back from the wilderness. His first season with Philly was a flop, but he's slashed .315/.370/.504 this year. Corey Kluber, on the other hand, seems like he's on his last legs with a 6.49 FIP while righties have gone .269 against since 2021.
In 2022, Lane Thomas ($13) received real playing time with the Nationals and picked up 17 homers and eight stolen bases. This year, he's at two and three, but with a .270 average. Thomas doesn't do great with righties, but has recorded an .851 OPS versus southpaws the last couple campaigns. Tommy Henry is a lefty with a career 5.73 FIP. He also walks a lot of batters and strikes out few, which is not a winning combination - unless you target him in DFS.
Stacks to Consider
Braves vs. Orioles (Kyle Bradish): Sean Murphy ($23), Matt Olson ($20), Austin Riley ($15)
While Bradish has managed a 4.86 FIP compared to his 6.14 ERA, that's still a poor number. It also comes after 4.45 as a rookie in 2022. I went with two righties to go with one lefty, because fellow righties have hit .286 against Bradish in his career.
Murphy has been freed from the Athletics and has decided to throw his hat in the ring as the best-hitting catcher in baseball having slashed .296/.439/.653 with nine home runs. The lefty Olson produced 34 homers and 44 doubles during his first season with Atlanta, and is already at nine long balls to go with a .364 OBP. And since 2021, he's slugged .510 against righties - and that includes his final season at Oakland's pitcher-friendly ballpark. Riley has started a little slow, but I expect him to pick it up. He carries the highest ground-ball rate and lowest line-drive rate of his career, and that goes back to before he tweaked his swing and took off offensively. He slugged .529 the two previous seasons, and has still crushed six home runs in 2023.
Giants vs. Brewers (Colin Rea): Thairo Estrada ($19), Joc Pederson ($17), J.D. Davis ($14)
Rea has not started regularly in MLB since 2016. Shockingly, things haven't turned around in four starts with a 5.44 FIP. The competition hasn't been all that tough either, with the Tigers in the mix. San Francisco has been dealing with a few injuries, but they still offer some players worth stacking.
Estrada has gone from an intriguing player to a likely All-Star having slashed .339/.395/.500 with four homers and nine steals after 14 and 21 last year. Pederson is the classic southpaw who mashes righties and has slugged .487 with 40 homers against them since 2021. And since joining the Giants, he's been much better at home with a .909 OPS during 2022. Davis is bringing the power having slugged .527 with seven homers. While a righty, he actually prefers to face right-handed pitchers like Rea as he's registered an .853 OPS against them the last two-plus seasons.