MLB DFS Plays: Sunday 7/18

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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.

We’ll focus our attention on the nine-game main slate starting at 1:05 ET.

PITCHER

Top Play: Taijuan Walker - NY Mets (at Pittsburgh)

Walker has everything you want in a DFS pitcher today: 1) The matchup looks great, as Pittsburgh ranks 28th in wRC+ this season. 2) PNC Park caters as one of the best pitching environments in baseball, so Walker has that on his side as well. 3) He has capable stuff while owning a cool 2.50 ERA with nearly a strikeout per frame (8.90 K/9), which marks a career-high. Go ahead and back the Mets’ righty this afternoon.

Also Consider: Zack Wheeler, Sonny Gray

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CATCHER

Top Play: Curt Casali - San Francisco (at St. Louis)

Salvador Perez is an elite play if you have the cap space to make him work. Jake Rogers is a bargain pick against the struggles of LHP J.A. Happ. Casali is a solid mid-range lift between them. He has been raking in recent games, collecting six hits with two homers and five RBI over his last four. Casali finds himself in a nice righty/lefty matchup against St. Louis southpaw Wade LeBlanc, who carries a .365 wOBA split to right-handed bats since the beginning of 2019.

Also Consider: Salvador Perez, Jake Rogers

FIRST BASE

Top Play: Carlos Santana - Kansas City (vs. Baltimore)

The Royals check in with the highest run-scoring projection of the day. You can conveniently find a list of the top-ranked offenses each day within our MLB DFS Optimizer, not to mention the best overall players and values. Baltimore RHP Matt Harvey has gotten crushed while allowing five or more earned runs in seven of his last 11 starts. Left-handed bats have been the main culprits, and Santana is a switch-hitter who could pile on.

Also Consider: Jonathan Schoop, Rhys Hoskins

SECOND BASE

Top Play: Jean Segura - Philadelphia (vs. Miami)

Segura has a moderate price tag and a decent matchup against Miami RHP Nick Neidert, who has a 4.76 career ERA with a low 5.40 K/9 rate. In other words, the Phillies should find plenty of contact against him before taking on a Miami bullpen that ranks middle-of-the-pack. Segura is a candidate for multiple hits and runs in this draw.

Also Consider: Whit Merrifield, Jorge Polanco

THIRD BASE

Top Play: J.D. Davis - NY Mets (at Pittsburgh)

I’m liking the Mets against Pittsburgh RHP JT Brubaker, who has allowed 11 earned runs and 12 hits across 11 innings over his last two starts. Meanwhile, Davis is trending upward with six hits, two homers, and five RBI over his last three starts. His salary isn’t too imposing either.

Also Consider: Wilmer Flores, Austin Riley

SHORTSTOP

Top Play: Nicky Lopez - Kansas City (vs. Baltimore)

Lopez will probably hit down in Kansas City’s lineup, but I still like him as a value pick. As mentioned earlier, the Royals should have a scoring frenzy against the recent struggles of Harvey. Lopez is a pesky left-handed bat who could take full advantage, and he’s seeing the ball well with four hits, four runs, and four RBI over the last two games.

Also Consider: Didi Gregorius, Paul DeJong

OUTFIELD

Top Play: Andrew Benintendi - Kansas City (vs. Baltimore)

Seriously: stack those Royals and don’t look back! Benintendi is one of the better lifts within that, as he’s a respectable value asset hitting up in Kansas City’s order. The KC outfielder has a nice blend of power and contact while potentially seeing a host of RBI opportunities in this game. Remember, Baltimore has a bottom-ten bullpen once Harvey exits, which could be early.

Top Play: Nelson Cruz - Minnesota (at Detroit)

Cruz refuses to age as he’s fresh off another All-Star appearance. The Minnesota DH slapped a homer yesterday, increasing his totals to .305 with 18 HR and 47 RBI this year. I’m not a believer in Detroit RHP Wily Peralta, who seems due for regression at any moment. Cruz could make that happen as the Twins’ best overall hitter at the moment.

Also Consider: Bryce Harper, Andrew McCutchen, Robbie Grossman, Max Kepler, Cedric Mullins, Michael Conforto, Derek Hill (GPP)