MLB DFS Plays: Sunday 6/13

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This article outlines the best daily fantasy MLB plays of the day at every position. We take a comprehensive look to uncover these core recommendations, factoring respective salaries into the analysis.

Please note, these player picks were organized early in the day. For MLB contests, always check lineups and weather closer to game time. Rain, wind, or unexpected managerial decisions could open up additional sources of value. Be sure to keep an eye on the MLB Headlines and Injuries desk.

The main slate features 11 games this afternoon. If you’re playing a full-day contest, be sure to also investigate Angels at Jon Duplantier.

PITCHER

Top Play: Shane Bieber – Indians (vs Mariners)

The two top-priced pitchers just so happen to be the top plays. Our alternative, Carlos Rodon, is set to face the worst offense in the league. Bieber draws the second-worst opponent. One point in Bieber’s favor – he consistently faces about three more batters than Rodon. They project similarly for at least six innings and eight strikeouts. Bieber is marginally likelier to deliver a coveted complete game.

Pivot: Logan Gilbert – Mariners (at Indians)

Pivoting 101: select the pitcher opposite the top play. Gilbert has run into some speed bumps in his first tour of Major League action. To my eyes, his issue is simple – an unwillingness to risk walking hitters. While his minor league walk rates suggest he’s a command and control guy, scouts will tell you he has 50-grade command (i.e. league average). When average command and low walk rates coincide, it means the pitcher is throwing too many cookies. To this end, I was encouraged by a five-inning, two-hit, four-walk, and seven-strikeout performance against the Angels last week. The Indians offense is one of the worst in the league. They’re not especially strikeout prone (23.0% K%).

Also Consider: Carlos Rodon, Aaron Nola, Robbie Ray, Pablo Lopez, Framber Valdez, Josh Fleming, Bruce Zimmermann, Drew Smyly

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CATCHER

Top Play: J.T. Realmuto – Phillies (vs Domingo German)

German’s reputation greatly exceeds his ability. He’s a credible but unexceptional right-hander who projects for a 4.50 ERA and has always struggled with home runs (1.72 HR/9). While I won’t quite seek out a Phillies stack, there’s leverage to be claimed if you can correctly guess which Phillies will homer. German will be oversubscribed. Realmuto is among the likeliest to deliver a hammer blow with a one-in-four chance to turn on one.

Pivot: Mike Zunino – Rays (vs Bruce Zimmermann)

While it’s likely a red herring, Zunino is crushing left-handed pitchers this season. More importantly, he’s a useful power target anytime he faces a ground ball pitcher. Zimmermann isn’t really a pitch-to-contact guy or strikeout artist – he lives in the space between. That shaves a few points off Zunino’s expected strikeout rate. Like Realmuto, he has a one-in-four chance to homer. Unlike Realmuto, that’s just about the only way he’ll provide value.

Also Consider: Yasmani Grandal, Yermin Mercedes, Omar Narvaez, Tyler Stephenson, Eric Haase

FIRST BASE

Top Play: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. – Blue Jays (at Martin Perez)

It’s another day with Vladito atop the first base pile. I’m a tad pessimistic about his home run potential against Perez. I fully expect a laser show – just not at the launch angles necessary to generate home runs. Of course, he should get multiple shots at relievers. Only Jose Altuve is likelier to deliver one or more hits.

Pivot: Daniel Vogelbach – Brewers (vs Wil Crowe)

Vogelbach is cursed with too much patience. He’s swinging a hot bat at the moment, but there’s serious risk he’ll go 0-for-2 with a couple walks. The Pirates will try to get Crowe through three or more innings again. He has a strong case for the title of Worst Starting Pitcher of 2021. He lacks any redeeming traits. The Brewers stack is A+ material today.

Also Consider: Freddie Freeman, Pete Alonso, Jose Abreu, Rhys Hoskins, Trey Mancini, Joey Votto, Bobby Bradley, Brandon Belt, Danny Santana

SECOND BASE

Top Play: Jose Altuve – Astros (at Michael Pineda)

Pineda has some issues with home runs and, while not yet the case this season, he tends to run an overheated BABIP too. Both traits conspire to make Altuve a seriously attractive target. He leads the slate in projected hits by a wide margin and also happens to come with just under a one-in-four chance to homer. Pineda works the whole zone so it comes down to his plan of attack against Altuve. If he’s foolish enough to risk high fastballs, this is a nitro matchup. If he nibbles below the zone, then it’s a slightly inefficient play.

Pivot: Dylan Moore – Mariners (at Bieber)

If you want to maximize your anti-Bieber leverage, Moore has seemingly picked up where he left off prior to injury. Yesterday, he knocked a homer, double, and stole a base in his return to the lineup. He was similarly flashy on the rehab trail and posted a .265/.324/.618 batting line in the two weeks before he hit the shelf. Odds are this matchup turns sour for Moore. Given his minimum price and dynamic skill set, it’s a solid gamble all the same.

Also Consider: Marcus Semien, Ryan McMahon, Jonathan India, Luis Urias, Ozzie Albies, Jean Segura, Brendan Rodgers

THIRD BASE

Top Play: Eugenio Suarez – Reds (vs Antonio Senzatela)

Third base is stocked with expensive, high octane names with favorable matchups. Suarez is a risky play as he’s almost entirely dependent on homering. He has a better than one-in-three chance to go yard against Senzatela. The Rockies right-hander is a mediocre ground ball pitcher, the exact sort against which Suarez has thrived in the past.

Pivot: Alec Bohm – Phillies (vs German)

Since the start of June, Bohm is hitting .370/.393/.370 in 28 plate appearances. This success isn’t related to any change in approach or batted ball profile. As a low-angle, all-fields hitter with a hefty hard contact rate and near-elite 92.2-mph average exit velocity, Bohm is a regular candidate to bat .300. That he’s hitting .224/.266/.311 on the season only highlights the depths of his ill-luck to date this season. German is known to work up in the zone which could help Bohm sneak a cheap home run.

Also Consider: Jose Ramirez, Alex Bregman, Ryan McMahon, Ke’Bryan Hayes, Austin Riley, Yoan Moncada, Manny Machado

SHORTSTOP

Top Play: Jazz Chisholm – Marlins (vs Smyly)

Smyly is a bit of a random number generator this season, deftly intermingling quality outings and disasterpieces. Chisholm is a dynamic athlete who has managed an above average barrel rate with a low angle of contact. Smyly’s own fly ball tendencies maximize Chisholm’s chances of a home run. Projections call for a one-in-five shot, but they’re probably overly pessimistic about his past minor league performances. I think this is a better than one-in-four play for a home run.

Pivot: Brandon Crawford – Giants (at Joe Ross)

My true pick here is Willy Adames, but I figure I’ve highlight him enough in recent weeks. Crawford has legitimately improved this season – though we do need to confirm he’s in the lineup after missing part of yesterday with a cramp. He’s producing career highs in launch angle, barrel, and hard contact rates leading to 14 home runs in 206 plate appearances. Ross is both homer prone and likely to pitch to Crawford’s strengths. The Nationals bullpen is a mess.

Also Consider: Trevor Story, Bo Bichette, Marcus Semien, Brendan Rodgers, Trea Turner, Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor, Willy Adames, Taylor Walls

OUTFIELD

Top Plays: Bryce Harper – Phillies (vs German)
Yordan Alvarez – Astros (at Pineda)
Kyle Tucker – Astros (at Pineda)

German’s approach to pitching seemingly is ideal for Harper. He’s coming off a three-hit game that included a 109-mph batted ball. I’m inclined to believe he’s over his wrist issue. As for Alvarez and Tucker, they’re both deeply discounted despite rating as two of the 10 best hitters in the entire slate. As such, they’re liable to be chalkier than a roll of antacids. Still, it’s hard to pass on such screaming bargains.

Pivots: Michael Brantley – Astros (at Pineda)
Adam Engel – White Sox (at Funkhouser)

The difficulty with all these favorable Astros projections is that they’re still facing an above average opponent backed by a quality bullpen. Even so, Brantley is cheap and rates among the top five for projected hits. Power outcomes aren’t especially likely, but he can make up for it with run production. Engel sat yesterday in what should have been a high value matchup. His teammate Brian Goodwin went off in his place. I’m hopeful Engel will get his chance in the sun today against a slew Quad-A caliber pitchers. He’s potentially the top bargain in the entire slate.

Also Consider: Jesse Winker, Nick Castellanos, Tyler Naquin, Juan Soto, Christian Yelich, Avisail Garcia, Ronald Acuna, Enrique Hernandez, Danny Santana, J.D. Martinez, Randal Grichuk, Teoscar Hernandez, Brian Goodwin, Dylan Moore