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.
This being the last day of the regular season, all bets are out the window. For teams with nothing at stake, expect star players to take a plate appearance, wave to the cardboard cuts, and retreat to the bench. The safest approach is to flock to games where it’s all on the line. The Giants, Cardinals, and Brewers have the most at stake. This is a rare day when bench players who happen to be starting will be the most attractive targets.
Astros at Jordan Lyles – Lyles struggles to induce any whiffs although he has shown a penchant for avoiding hard contact. He’s still prone to allowing runs in bunches. The Astros bench includes several truly fascinating players like Abraham Toro, Myles Straw, and Aledmys Diaz. Carlos Correa, Michael Brantley, and George Springer sat yesterday so they’ll probably play today. If you’re feeling contrarian, I have Lyles as the most likely pitcher to finish six innings – not that it’s necessarily good for him to pitch deep into an outing.
Rockies vs Madison Bumgarner – I also have the impression that the Diamondbacks would love to give Bumgarner a chance to end the season on a high note. He’s coming off his best outing of the season – a five-inning shutout of the Astros. His fastball is down to 88 mph and he’s allowed 3.19 HR/9. The Arizona bullpen is below average.
Braves vs Nick Pivetta – Atlanta has plenty of experience with Pivetta. The righty is coming off a triumphant return to the Majors last week. While he’ll typically post a high strikeout rate, home runs (2.53 HR/9 this year, 1.61 HR/9 career) tend to put a damper on his outings. The Braves don’t run much of a bench so they can only sit a couple regulars.
Austin Gomber – Cardinals (vs Brewers) – Yahoo: $31, DK: $6100, FD: $5500
Perhaps I’m trying too hard with this recommendation. The Cardinals are the only team that has to plan for tomorrow – a possible doubleheader with the Tigers. As such, they can’t just soak a couple innings from Gomber and turn to the bullpen. They need to be prepared for 14 more innings. Gomber, a ground ball pitcher, doesn’t post many strikeouts, but he can occasionally cruise through outings. Last week, he tossed six frames worth over 20 points on DraftKings.
Beware the aces below. Perhaps they’ll be set free for a full outing. It’s more likely they throw no more than 75 pitches.
Sam Huff – Rangers (vs Brandon Bielack) – Yahoo: $16, DK: $2900, FD: $2200
I wanted Huff as a pivot yesterday, but it wasn’t meant to be. The powerful backstop has Gary Sanchez vibes written all over him. Expect high strikeout rates, potent power, and loads of volatility. The Astros are opening with Chase De Jong for Bielack. Both pitchers are below average.
Not only is Huff inexpensive, he has one of the best projections at catcher. Our Rotoworld Lineup Optimizer uses him in 32 of the top 50 rosters.
Unless you’re using the top pitchers, we’ll have plenty of budget for big ticket investments like Freeman. He rested a couple days ago and should be on tap for the entire game. Freeman is having the best season of his career, hitting .343/.465/.648. Pivetta’s obviously trying to use the top of the zone more this year which could help Freeman’s power projection for today. There’s a chance the Braves crack into the Red Sox bullpen by the third inning.
Second base has really devolved into a low value position. Only a couple guys are projected to outperform Marte despite his bargain price. Although the switch-hitter’s power has evaporated this season, he remains a decent DFS asset thanks to a high average, useful lineup role, and frequent balls in play. Less than 15 percent of his plate appearances have ended in a walk or strikeout. Throughout his career, he’s hit for higher average and power against left-handed pitchers.
Rafael Devers – Red Sox (at Bryse Wilson) – Yahoo: $21, DK: $5400, FD: $3700
After an icy start to the season, Devers has recovered his exceptional 2019 form. Since a three-hit game in mid-August, he’s batting .313/.357/.590 in 154 plate appearances. He’s also popped nine of his 11 home runs over the span. The only demerit is his strikeout rate which has remained consistently around 25 percent for the entire campaign. Last season, he had a career-best 17 percent strikeout rate. In any event, Devers recently rested and matches up well against Wilson, a homer-prone right-hander.
Correa is a player who, under normal circumstances, I would be eager to buy low in traditional fantasy settings. His .256/.320/.362 batting line is missing just one thing – home runs. He’s in a bit of a rut with pulled ground balls and infield flies. I suspect a mechanical hitch or perhaps a frustrated approach at the plate. He’s also running a career-worst swing rate at pitches out of the zone. Since he still needs to solve these problems, Correa isn’t the sharpest play for today specifically – even with the friendly matchup. However, he gets the nod because we can be reasonably confident he’ll play a full game.
Unlike his teammate Correa, there’s no reason for pessimism with Springer. He’s one of the top-projected players in the entire slate, and he’ll probably play the entire game. Among his many virtues today, he’s carries around a 40 percent chance for a home run. I expect him to be popular but not chalky.
If you happen to need to save money on DraftKings or FanDuel, Hays projects as an above average hitter at a bargain basement price tag. Since returning from injury, he’s hitting .388/.423/.612 with three home runs in 52 plate appearances. A ground ball hitter, facing Roark offers an interesting opportunity. Roark used to be a ground ball pitcher, but he’s working the top of the zone more often this season. It hasn’t been an effective adaptation (7.01 ERA, 2.89 HR/9).
Also Consider: Christian Yelich, Kyle Tucker, Michael Brantley, Tommy Pham, Marcell Ozuna, Joey Gallo, Nick Castellanos, Andrew McCutchen, DJ Stewart (value), Roman Quinn (value), Edward Olivares (value)