MLB DFS Plays: Wednesday 6/2

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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.

PITCHER

Top Play: Walker Buehler – Dodgers (vs Cardinals)

Buehler is the best pitcher on the docket. He’s set to host a middling Cardinals offense. The Dodgers young ace consistently throws between six and seven innings – never more, never less. His projection for tonight isn’t anything remarkable under normal circumstances, but this is a relatively weak slate for pitchers.

The other chalky play is Alek Manoah versus a banged up Marlins lineup. He probably has a cap of no more than 90 pitches – possibly far fewer. He looked special in his debut versus the Yankees.

Pivot: Randy Dobnak – Twins (at Orioles)

If you’re feeling contrarian, sign up for a third run with Dobnak. He’s delivered a gem and a clunker since returning to the rotation. Notably, he’s an efficient pitcher who generally keeps the ball on the ground. This is the kind of pitcher who throws BABIP-aided no-hitters out of nowhere. We’re hoping for luck on balls in play and at least six innings. He projects for only four strikeouts.

Also Consider: Sean Manaea, Jordan Montgomery, Alek Manoah, Framber Valdez

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CATCHER

Top Play: Mike Zunino – Rays (at Jordan Montgomery)

Zunino’s emergence this season as everything we hoped to get out of Gary Sanchez has been a pleasant surprise. An extreme fly ball hitter with an equally extreme whiff rate, Zunino is getting the most out of his contact whenever he manages to make it. Montgomery has sufficient ground ball tendencies to light up Zunino as a homer-or-bust target. The catcher position is quite thin today.

Pivot: Ben Rortvedt – Twins (at Matt Harvey)

The Twins stack failed us yesterday, but we should be racing back to the well today. That’s because Harvey is pitching on short rest to kick off a bullpen game. Unfortunately, Mitch Garver is dealing with a serious groin injury. Rortvedt will likely fill in. He’s a minimum priced punt who has some potential for power outcomes. In a tiny sample, half of his contact has been fly balls. He also has a 39.4 percent strikeout rate.

If Ryan Jeffers is recalled or Willians Astudillo nabs a start, they’re even more interesting than Rortvedt.

Also Consider: Will Smith, William Contreras, Sean Murphy

FIRST BASE

Top Play: C.J. Cron – Rockies (vs Jordan Lyles)

Unlike catcher, this is a deeeeep day for first basemen. Quite a few can be expected to light it up tonight. If you’re not running a stack, consider solving this position last.

Cron tops the charts thanks to a juicy matchup at Coors Field. Lyles is neither a fly ball nor ground ball pitcher. It’s best to choose one or the other – especially if you don’t have elite stuff. Coors Field is especially malevolent to these non-specialist pitchers. Both Cron and Lyles have around a 15 degree launch angle which gives Cron an excellent opportunity to smash some baseballs.

Pivot: Yuli Gurriel – Astros (vs Nick Pivetta)

I expect Gurriel to be undersubscribed tonight. The soon-to-be 37-year-old remains a potent hitter with frequent hard, low-angle contact. Pivetta is a fly ball pitcher which is less than ideal at Minute Maid Park. Thanks to the Crawford Boxes, a stack of Astros right-handers get a healthy boost in expected home run production tonight.

Also Consider: Freddie Freeman, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Trey Mancini, Matt Olson, Nate Lowe, Alex Kirillof, Miguel Sano, Ryan Zimmerman, Josh Bell, Mitch Moreland

SECOND BASE

Top Play: Jose Altuve – Astros (vs Nick Pivetta)

This is a headline matchup that could easily produce multiple home runs. Altuve is a ground ball hitter with an over-50 percent pulled contact rate. Pivetta’s penchant to work up in the zone unlocks all kind of multi-hit and run production opportunities.

Pivot: Taylor Walls – Rays (at Montgomery)

In a ludicrously tiny sample, Walls has looked like a better hitter from the right side. This is mostly an interaction of low-cost and power friend venue. Walls’ swing seems to have some natural lift which could help him to overcome his otherwise modest power. Usually, I’d look to Walls only for multiple hits, but there’s a good 10 percent chance he rolls a Yahtzee tonight.

Also Consider: Ryan McMahon, Ozzie Albies, Max Muncy, Jorge Polanco, Nick Solak, Josh Harrison

THIRD BASE

Top Play: Josh Donaldson – Twins (at Harvey)

Harvey might be the worst regular starting pitcher in the league. Short-rest Harvey could be a truly special opportunity. Donaldson has relatively modest production this season, but his peripherals are as spicy as ever. An incandescent hot streak lies somewhere in his future – assuming his calf doesn’t blow up against first.

Pivot: Starlin Castro – Nationals (at Drew Smyly)

Castro has lost the launch angle which made him an interesting speculative target in 2019 and 2020. He’s currently running the highest ground ball rate of his career. It might work out today against a fly ball southpaw like Smyly. After all, Castro is still making hard contact including a 111.2 max exit velocity – well above average. A Nationals stack would be spicier than Castro by himself.

Also Consider: McMahon, Sano, Justin Turner, Austin Riley

SHORTSTOP

Top Play: Trea Turner – Nationals (at Smyly)

Speaking of a Nationals stack, Turner towers over the other shortstop in the slate, projecting to outperform the best alternatives by some 20 percent. His price has even drifted towards reasonable levels. Smyly’s repertoire and pitch execution makes for a near-perfect matchup. Turner is the likeliest to deliver a hit today, and he even has a one-in-five chance to homer.

Pivot: Freddy Galvis – Orioles (vs Dobnak)

Galvis has one of the highest fly ball rates of his career, and he’s using it to hit for bizarro power. He already has nine home runs, putting him on pace to set a career-best. Dobnak has made his share of mistakes in the zone this season. If Galvis gets something he can lift, a home run is possible. Consider it about a one-in-six chance. If you have a choice to punt using Castro or Galvis, I’d choose Galvis.

Also Consider: Dansby Swanson, Carlos Correa, Isiah Kiner-Falefa, Walls

OUTFIELD

Top Plays: Nelson Cruz – Twins (at Harvey)
Ronald Acuna – Braves (vs Jon Lester)
Joey Gallo – Rangers (at Antonio Senzatela)

The outfield is crowded with incredible matchups and juicy prices. Acuna is probably the lone expensive choice you’ll want to consider. He has a one-in-three chance to homer along with an array of other positive outcomes. He’s the top play in the slate. Cruz is the only player likelier to homer. He comes with a two-in-five chance for a deep fly. As such, he’s also the best play for multiple dingers. Gallo is right up there in the same stratosphere. He’s facing a beatable ground ball pitcher at Coors Field.

Pivots: Trevor Larnach – Twins (at Harvey)
Kyle Garlick – Twins (at Harvey)

This is what makes the Twins stack so attractive. Larnach and Garlick are above average hitters with a highly desirable matchup. They’re completely mispriced too. Larnach is the more talented of the pair. He makes near-elite hard contact including a 116-mph max exit velocity. Garlick is less powerful but often bats leadoff (most predictably versus left-handed pitchers – so keep an eye on the lineup). If Rob Refsnyder starts in place of Garlick, he’s a big value too.

Also Consider: Kyle Tucker, Yordan Alvarez, Willie Calhoun, Cody Bellinger, Adolis Garcia, Charlie Blackmon, Giancarlo Stanton, Kirilloff, Chas McCormick, Manuel Margot