This article outlines the best daily fantasy MLB pivots 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.
Andrew Heaney – Angels (vs Rangers) – Yahoo: $42, DK: $8300, FD: $8500
Between a handful of aces and a plethora of low-cost bargains, a mid-priced Heaney is liable to slip through the cracks tonight. His matchup against the Rangers is the best in the slate. Their offense is worst in the league with a 62 wRC+ (38 percent below league average). They also have the fifth-highest strikeout rate and climbing. Their decision to give more playing time to rookies like Leody Taveras, Sam Huff, and Sherten Apostel is only exacerbating both problems. The Rangers are also loaded with left-handed hitters who possess heavy platoon splits.
Heaney has a good chance to reach the coveted double-digit strikeout plateau. He’s been sharp lately, lasting seven or more innings in three of his last four starts.
This is a multi-level pivot. Before digging in, you’re probably better off with any min-price catcher such as Sam Huff. By using Perez, you’re directly attacking the most popular pitcher in the slate. Aside from Will Smith at Coors Field, Perez is the likeliest backstop to homer. Our Rotoworld Player Projections consider him a top play at the position. He’s overpriced on Yahoo and DraftKings which only further fuels the pivot.
This entire slate is overshadowed by Coors Field. The Rays stack should be pretty far down the priority list. Lowe (not to be confused with Brandon Lowe) is finally getting an extended opportunity in the daily lineup. He’s hitting .282/.404/.564 in 47 plate appearances with an extreme barrel rate. The biggest drawback is his plate discipline which verges on passivity at times. The overall profile is not dissimilar to a left-handed Rhys Hoskins. Lopez is a right-handed sinkerballer who has extreme issues with any left-handed hitter.
Our Projections consider Lowe to be the best value at first base. He’s used in 20 of the top 50 lineups per our Rotoworld Lineup Optimizer.
While his teammate is a bargain, Lowe works as a pivot because he’s expensive in a slate where most entrants will be pushed in other directions. He also has the platoon advantage against Lopez and rates as the likeliest second baseman to homer. His penchant for fly ball contact makes this an especially juicy matchup since Lopez is a ground ball pitcher.
Donaldson is one of the top third baseman available, but he’s priced in the mid-tier. Most of your rivals will be focused either on pricy or bargain basement options. Donaldson cuts the difference. When healthy, he’s having another fine season at the plate. One potential red flag is an elevated ground ball rate. Mills also likes to keep the ball on the ground. However, Donaldson has a long history of generating plenty of lift. We can at least partly write off his over 50 percent ground ball rate this season as a small sample artifact. As an added bonus, the winds at Wrigley are blowing gently out to left field.
Like Donaldson, Torres splits the gap between the pricy and the cheap. Since returning from injury, he’s resumed swatting the ball with authority, hitting .314/.400/.629 over a span of 40 plate appearances. He’s taken up residence as the Yankees fifth hitter. Mazza is in contention for worst pitcher of the slate. We have every reason to expect Torres to remain hot. Meanwhile, his price tag still mostly reflects his early-season slump.
Anytime Kepler faces a right-handed ground ball pitcher, he’s one of the best targets for a multi-homer game. Although he hasn’t delivered one since Opening Day, that only reflects how rare such performances are now that the wacky 2019 baseball is no longer in play. As a lefty, the Twins leadoff man won’t be helped or hurt by the Wrigley winds tonight. Mills has difficult inducing strikeouts in addition to allowing 1.37 HR/9.
Yoshi Tsutsugo – Rays (at Jorge Lopez) – Yahoo: $10, DK: $2800, FD: $2700
Like the aforementioned Rays, Tsutsugo benefits from a platoon-prone opponent and a power friendly ballpark. Although his seasonal stats leave much to be desired, he’s hitting reasonably well since the end of August - .245/.327/.531 with three home runs in 55 plate appearances. He bounces all over the lineup, most recently appearing as the leadoff hitter. He’s a modest bargain wherever he’s batting, but the value proposition is stronger if he’s near the top of the order.