Today's featured daily fantasy site is DailyJoust. Click HERE for a first time deposit bonus.
Before we get into today's recommendations, it is important to remind everyone to understand your scoring format and the pricing of the individual players on the site you're playing. These vary from site to site and all daily sites price their players differently, which could make someone a must start on one site but not another. In the space below I will break down the best and worst plays by position and make notes as to which type of formats to utilize players. If you are new to the daily fantasy baseball scene, there are daily fantasy websites which offer one day contests. These contests are mostly salary cap games where you can take any players you want as long as you stay under the cap and meet the positional requirements and all are points-based (not roto). As a result these recommendations often focus on value. By reading the notes below you'll be able to identify not only value options but potential weak pitchers to exploit. If a player is not touched on, it doesn't mean they're not a good play. We have limited space and assessing value across all the sites is a bit subjective. Please feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any further questions regarding daily fantasy baseball.
Weather: A few games have shaky forecasts early on which are going to make "weather-watching" a big portion of the evening leading up to games. As always it's best to follow Mike (@leonem4444) and myself (@DrewDinkmeyer) on Twitter for thoughts before the games start.
Danger Zone (60+% chance): PIT-DET (Scattered), NYY-NYM (T-Showers), STL-KC (Scattered Strong)
Watch (30+% chance): BAL-WSH (Isolated), CHC-CHW (Scattered)
Joe Mauer (MIN) - Mauer performed well for us in this space yesterday and we're going to stay with him in another favorable matchup on Tuesday night. Mauer draws Alfredo Figaro who in limited experience at the big league level has posted a 5.01 FIP and allowed a .360 wOBA to LHB's. As Mike noted yesterday Mauer has a .385 wOBA against RHP since 2010 and in his career he's posted a spectacular 24.4% LD Rate against RHP. Figaro has allowed a 28% LD Rate to LHB's so look for Mauer to spray some line drives into the gaps on Tuesday night.
Ryan Doumit (MIN) - Just like yesterday Doumit makes our value plays list while Mauer is our top play. Doumit has a .341 wOBA against RHP in his career along with a .185 ISO. His price ranges across the industry but on today's featured site DailyJoust he's just 50k and makes for a very nice starting point at the catcher position if you're looking to save money.
Yasmani Grandal (SD) - Grandal will be activated and reinstated from his 50 game suspension for testing positive for elevated levels of testosterone in the offseason. Grandal has been "rehabbing" in AAA and he's hit .306/.342/.389 against minor league pitching over the last 10 days. He's still working his way into regular season form but this is a catcher who hit .297/.394/.469 in 226 PA's last year for the Padres, good for a .376 wOBA. He's a switch-hitter who better against LHP (.403 wOBA) but wasn't bad against RHP (.366 wOBA) and on Tuesday night he'll face Brandon Maurer who has surrendered a .459 wOBA to LHB's in his brief major league career. Grandal has long been forgotten in the daily fantasy world and on sites that do have him listed he's very cheap. On DailyJoust he's the bare minimum at 50k and is a very strong value play today.
Jonathan Lucroy (MIL) - We always like Lucroy against LHP (career .310/.345/.520, .372 wOBA) and on Tuesday he'll get to face Scott Diamond. Diamond actually has some pretty large reverse splits in his career (.322 wOBA vs. RHB, .365 wOBA vs. LHB), which will be interesting to see how he navigates through a heavy RH Brewers lineup. Lucroy is cheap on a number of sites and his 53k tag on DailyJoust is especially appealing. Diamond's reverse splits make me pause slightly in ranking Lucroy higher (I prefer Doumit), but I do think he's a solid play tonight as the Brewers-Twins have one of the three evening games with today's high total of 9.
Victor Martinez (DET) - Victor Martinez is starting to swing a better bat of late (.345 batting average over the last week) and he's still cheap across the industry. He gets to face Jeanmar Gomez who has yielded a .339 wOBA against LHB's over the last three years, including 1.25 HR/9. I'd love to see Martinez hit for more power and have better plate patience even in his hot streak (.323 OBP, .379 Slugging %), but hitting 5th in a powerful Tigers lineup should help provide better fantasy performances than real-life ones. On sites where Martinez is catcher eligible, he's a fine value play on Tuesday night.
Expensive Top Plays:
Chris Davis (BAL) - Davis will get to face Nate Karns who is making his big league debut for the Nationals. Karns is a RHP with plus velocity on his FB and an improving curve-ball that Keith Law suggested could eventually grade out as a 70 on the 20-80 scouting scale. He's only got 45 innings above A ball and while he's posted a strong strikeout rate in AA this year, he's also walked 3.6 batters per 9 innings and he's allowed 1.0 HR/9. Davis mashes fastballs perhaps better than any player in the big leagues over the last two years (+13.9 pitch value) and we typically see an over-reliance on the fastball when prospects are first promoted. This should be a good matchup for Davis.
Joey Votto (CIN) - Votto, like Davis, is expensive across the industry but Tuesday is another day where the matchup is in his favor. Votto will take on Zach McAllister who has given up 1.25 HR/9 to LHB's over the last three years. McAllister also walks nearly 9% of the LHB's he faces and generally struggles to keep the ball off the ground (career 40% GB Rate). In a small park like Great American Ballpark the excessive FB rate usually leads to HR's. Votto is on a bit of homer tear as he's launched three in his last five games, and with McAllister in town he has a good chance of making it four in six.
More Affordable Top Plays:
Prince Fielder (DET) - Fielder has been slumping a bit in May (.247/.385/.393) and as a result he's priced more affordably than the other elite sluggers at 1B. On Tuesday he gets to face Jeanmar Gomez who allows 1.25 HR/9 to LHB's over the last three years. Fielder has been dominant in his career against RHP (.296/.413/.573, .411 wOBA) and Gomez's propensity for the long-ball could be Fielder's remedy for the recent power outage. I've been using Fielder a lot the last week because his price has come down and so I've seen a lot of his AB's. He's still using all fields and he's hit a number of balls very hard to LCF that have found defenders gloves. I think he's close to having a power outburst and Tuesday's matchup is a good one for it to happen.
Adrian Gonzalez (LAD) - Gonzalez has been red-hot (9-11 over the last 3 games, .343/.390/.571 in May) of late but on many sites his price has yet to adjust significantly. Gonzalez has lost some of the trademark power that made him an elite fantasy 1B but he still possesses a .533 slugging % against RHP since 2011. Joe Blanton takes the mound for the Angels and he's surrendered a .346 wOBA including 1.24 HR/9 to LHB's over the last three years. With Gonzalez posting a .387 wOBA against RHP the last two years and swinging a red-hot bat, I think he's one of the safer top plays tonight.
Billy Butler (KC) - Butler has been slumping a bit of late and his price is noticeably down across the industry. On DailyJoust Butler is just 60k, which is criminal. In his career against LHP, Butler has hit .316/.397/.542 (.398 wOBA) and on Tuesday he'll get to face Cardinals rookie LHP Tyler Lyons. There isn't much of a sample to evaluate Lyons on but he's surrendered a 27% LD Rate and 1.5 HR/9 so far to RHB's. Butler's immense career numbers against LHP warrant strong consideration as a value play on Tuesday.
Garrett Jones (PIT) - In his career Jones has hit .280/.347/.503 against RHP (.364 wOBA) and on Tuesday he gets a favorable matchup with Rick Porcello who has served up a .364 wOBA and 21.6% LD Rate over the last three years to LHB's. Jones, like Butler, is just 60k on DailyJoust and is an excellent value play.
Mike Napoli (BOS) - There are a few sites that take into account opposing SP strength in their pricing and on those Napoli is noticeably cheap today against Cliff Lee. Obviously Lee is a tough matchup but Napoli has hit .272/.378/.518 in his career against LHP (.384 wOBA) and the game takes place in a favorable run-scoring environment in Boston. He's not my top value play at 1B but if you're in large tournaments I think he's a sneaky play as most will overlook the tough matchup.
The best 2B are littered with tough matchups tonight (Cano vs. Harvey, Pedroia vs. Lee, Kipnis vs. Latos) so it's probably a better night to look towards value. If I was picked one of the top plays to rely on it would probably be Dustin Pedroia because he's so dominant at home against LHP (.420 wOBA) or Brandon Phillips who gets the benefit of hitting between Votto and Bruce against Zach McAllister and his homer-prone tendencies.
Neil Walker (PIT) - Walker has either been hitting 2nd or 5th against RHP and either spot is a nice one in the batting order for Runs/RBI production. On Tuesday night he'll face Rick Porcello who as we've covered struggles against LHB's (.364 wOBA). Walker has hit .284/.350/.447 in his career against RHP which is good for a .347 wOBA. He's just 55k on DailyJoust which makes him our top value play at 2B and the guy I'm most likely to utilize across the industry.
Rickie Weeks (MIL) - Weeks has been a fixture in the fix whenever the Brewers are facing LHP. For his career he's hit lefties at a .262/.391/.441 clip with a 0.72 EYE. This year he's struggled against them (.196/.318/.339) but his BB% (15.2%) and his EYE (0.63) are largely in line with career rates. A .237 BABIP despite a 22.5% LD Rate is a big part of Weeks struggles against LHP. That would suggest it's a bit fluky, which is why he keep putting him in this space. Scott Diamond has some reverse splits that could be a mild concern, but Weeks is near the bare minimum on almost every daily fantasy site and deserves consideration as a value play.
Matt Carpenter (STL) - Carpenter remains a go-to play against RHP and on Tuesday he'll get a crack at Ervin Santana who has allowed a .335 wOBA to LHB's over the last three years. Carpenter has been so solid in his career against righties, hitting .302/.388/.444, and he leads off against them. Some sites have priced Carpenter near the top of the 2B barrel (DailyJoust included) and on those sites he's not the best play, but others have been slow to adapt his pricing. If you can shop around there's bound to be some value for Carpenter tonight.
Jean Segura (MIL) - On most sites Jean Segura's incredible start to the season has him priced as a top SS option and it makes it difficult to play; however, in a few places some value can be had. Segura is hitting an insane .333/.361/.594 against LHP this year and while I don't for a second think that's a reasonable base-line expectation for Segura's production against lefties going forward, he is hitting 2nd in a lineup that crushes LHP. Where his price is reasonable, he's a viable value option for a diminished SS pool.
Jed Lowrie (OAK) - Lowrie is one of my favorite switch-hitter splits to take advantage because he's so much better against LHP (.369 wOBA) than RHP (.312 wOBA) in his career. Lowrie will face off with rookie Mike Kickham who is a LHP that has good stuff but also some shaky command. He's walked over 10% of batters faced over the last two years at AA and AAA and Lowrie possesses a strong 10.7% career BB% against LHP. It's a good bet he gets on base against the Giants rookie and for just 68k on DailyJoust, he's a bargain.
Jimmy Rollins (PHI) - Rollins hit 3rd last night against RHP in Fenway and I'd expect that to be the case again on Tuesday. Rollins has been better against RHP (.332 wOBA) than LHP (.321 wOBA) in his career and the favorable offensive environment in Fenway should boost some of those numbers. Ryan Dempster walks nearly 11% of LHB's he's faced over the last three years and also allows a 20% LD Rate. Rollins is hitting in a premier spot in the lineup in one of the best offensive parks in baseball with a slightly above average matchup. He's a fine value play on Tuesday. At just 71k on DailyJoust, I'll be between he and Lowrie as my primary SS choice on Tuesday.
Ian Desmond (WSH) - Desmond will get to square off against Orioles rookie Kevin Gausman on Tuesday night in what figures to be a bit of a boom-or-bust matchup. Desmond does much of his damage off of FB's which Gausman threw 70% of the time in his debut. The Nationals offense has really struggled of late and it's forced Desmond's pricing down. He's not a particularly adept hitter (.320 career wOBA) but he's been neutral against RHP and LHP. He hits in the middle of the order and for just 55k on DailyJoust, he's a worthwhile flier.
Alcides Escobar (KC) - Escobar is slightly better against LHP (.298 wOBA than RHP (.286 wOBA) in his career and he's hitting .311 against lefties this year. He continues to bat near the top of the order thanks to Ned Yost which while hurting the Royals does save whatever semblance of fantasy impact Escobar can have. If Escobar can get on-base against the rookie Lyons, he's got a good chance to score runs with Billy Butler and Alex Gordon behind him. The one negative for Escobar is that his SB ability is mitigated almost completely by Yadier Molina, which cuts out a significant portion of the upside. I still think he's a decent, if unspectacular, value option on Tuesday night.
Miguel Cabrera (DET) - He almost belongs in a category of his own at this point. As always with Miggy, the only issue is price. At 167k on DailyJoust it's difficult to fit him in without taking a significantly discounted pitching option.
Chase Headley (SD) - Headley is my favorite value play going on Tuesday as he gets to face Brandon Maurer who has really had his struggles against LHB's (.459 wOBA, 12% BB%, 26% LD Rate, 2.11 HR/9). In his career Headley has been better from the left side (.351 wOBA) and since 2011 his numbers against righties have been even better (.283/.386/.453, .367 wOBA). At just 64k on DailyJoust, Headley is my top value play.
Pablo Sandoval (SF) - Sandoval's price is down and he gets to face Jarrod Parker who has let LHB's hit .322/.400/.535 against him this year. Sandoval has been better in his career against RHP (.365 wOBA) than LHP (.333 wOBA) and while the offensive environment isn't great it is a strong matchup. At just 69k, he's under-valued on DailyJoust as he is across the industry.
David Wright (NYM) - The matchup isn't ideal as Hiroki Kuroda limits RHB's to just a .279 wOBA, but across the industry it looks as if David Wright is just far too cheap. He's just 75k on DailyJoust and in his career he's hit .289/.364/.485 against RHP (.367 wOBA). You'll be hard-pressed to find similar overall talents at those price points.
Additional 3B notes:
If you can find a nice price on Pedro Alvarez, a pitcher who struggles to miss bats (Rick Porcello) is kind of the ideal matchup. Unfortunately on most sites I checked his recent surge has made him more expensive than all of the value plays listed above. Conor Gillaspie is also an interesting cheap flier against Edwin Jackson who has really struggled this year, but I think Jackson pitches well on Tuesday so I probably won't use Gillaspie. Manny Machado and Josh Donaldson are both priced like top plays and have favorable matchups against starters making their big league debuts. I prefer Machado to Donaldson but both are strong plays, just not particularly great values.
Ryan Braun (MIL) - Braun is super-human against LHP. In his career he's hit .346/.418/.659 against LHP (.451 wOBA) and on Tuesday he gets to face a LHP at home. Scott Diamond has been adequate against RHB's over the last three years (.322 wOBA), but Braun has just been so good against lefties that I consider him a top play against any non-elite LH starter. Braun is battling a thumb issue and it kept him out of the lineup on Monday so you'll need to confirm he's in the lineup, but if he is I'm going to trust that he's healthy enough to mash LHP.
Mike Trout (LAA) - He's Mike Trout, do you really need more? Ok fine. Trout has actually been better against RHP (.400 wOBA) than LHP (.371 wOBA) in his career but most of that is BABIP driven (.376 vs. RHP, .300 vs. LHP). Trout actually hits for more power (.242 ISO vs. .233 ISO) and has a higher BB Rate (11.8%) and EYE (0.58) against lefties. Hyun-Jin Ryu has limited RHB's to a .292 wOBA so far in his big league career but Trout has been on-fire in May hitting .354/.432/.729. I actually think the Angels offense struggles a bit overall on Tuesday, but I think Trout has a game that fills up the fantasy box-score.
Additional Top Plays to Spend on: Andrew McCutchen (PIT), Adam Jones (BAL), Carl Crawford (LAD), Bryce Harper (WSH), Yoenis Cespedes (OAK), Nate McLouth (BAL)
Andre Ethier (LAD) - Ethier is a career .309/.387/.520 hitter against RHP (.387 wOBA) and on Tuesday he gets to face Joe Blanton who has surrendered a .346 wOBA and 1.24 HR/9 to LHB's over the last three years. Ethier is exceptionally affordable across the daily landscape due to a slow start but he's got a 0.95 EYE and 24% LD Rate against RHP this year. All of the slow start appears to be driven by a .286 BABIP and an unusually low HR/FB Rate compared to his career averages against righties. He's my favorite OF value today. At 75k on DailyJoust I think he's a nice steal, although other sites have even deeper discounts on Ethier on Tuesday.
Travis Snider (PIT) - If you haven't noticed we at the Fix support LHB's going up against Rick Porcello. Snider is another one of the value LHB's you can deploy on Tuesday. He's hitting .273/.333/.430 against RHP this year (.333 wOBA) and his biggest weakness against righties continues to be strikeouts (23% K%). Porcello only strikes out 12% of the LHB's he faces which likely means more balls in play for Travis. The only thing you'll need to check on Snider is his lineup positioning. As long as he's hitting 2nd I'm in full support of him as a strong value play, but if the Pirates move him down significantly in the order (he's 8th recently) much of the value would be sucked out. At 60k on DailyJoust he's near the minimum for OF's.
Michael Morse (SEA) - Morse gets to face Edinson Volquez who has given up a .333 wOBA and 1.18 HR/9 to RHB's over the last three years. Morse price is way down because the Mariners offense has been atrocious of late but Morse has actually been hitting well (.327/.400/.490 over last 13 games). For his career Morse is better against LHP (.379 wOBA) but his .353 wOBA against RHP is pretty darn good. He's just 68k on DailyJoust and he's very cheap on a number of other sites as well. He'll be locked into the middle of the Mariners lineup against a SP who is prone to blow-ups. This is a nice spot to deploy Morse as a value play.
Other Potential Value Plays: Josh Willingham (MIN), Will Venable (SD), Norichika Aoki (MIL), Denard Span (WSH), Chris Parmalee (MIN), Chris Dickerson (BAL), Alejandro de Aza (CHW), Andy Dirks (DET), Jeff Francoeur (KC), Michael Saunders (SEA), Jon Jay (STL), Matt Joyce (TB)
Under-priced Star OF's to Target: Matt Kemp (LAD), Carlos Beltran (STL), Matt Holliday (STL), Jay Bruce CIN), Shin Soo Choo (CIN)
Hiroki Kuroda (NYY) - If you've paid attention over the course of the year you're probably well aware of how much I like Hiroki Kuroda. He is the vanilla ice cream of SP's. He's so steady, year after year and while every draft season people chase the brand new exciting flavor, he just keeps delivering understated, yet delicious, fantasy lines. On Tuesday night he gets to face a Mets offense that ranks 24th in wOBA against RHP and possesses a 23.5% K Rate against righties. Kuroda's never been expensive in the daily games because he doesn't have an elite K Rate, but his price did tumble after a short outing against the Orioles that ended a streak of 7 straight quality starts. Against a weak Mets offense I expect him to start a new streak on Tuesday night and with Vegas posting a total of just 6.5, it would appear they expect him to as well. Win-heavy sites will make it more difficult to trust Kuroda going up against Matt Harvey, but I think he pitches really well on Tuesday. For just 294k on DailyJoust I think he's the best value SP option on Tuesday.
Edwin Jackson (CHC) - Jackson is the amongst the cheapest SP option on DailyJoust today (171k) and while I don't advise you taking him on a 1 SP site like DailyJoust I do think he deserves consideration on multiple SP sites with tough pricing. Jackson has gotten horrible results this year (6.11 ERA, 1.57 WHIP) but his indicators suggest he hasn't pitched anywhere near that poor (3.69 FIP, 3.67 xFIP). He's striking out 21% of batters faced and posting a solid 50% GB Rate but some issues with LD's allowed (22%) and a ghastly LOB% (56.4%) have really exaggerated Jackson's performance. If Jackson's base-runners allowed scored at a rate consistent with the league average he'd have a sub-4 ERA. He faces a White Sox offense that ranks 27th in wOBA against RHP with a .296 mark. They strike out 21.6% of the time against RHP and Jackson even in this horrific 2013 season has held RHB's to a .298 wOBA. The White Sox have 6 regulars in their lineup that are RHB's. I believe strongly that Jackson is going to pitch well tonight and on a number of sites his bargain-basement pricing leaves much more upside than downside in selecting him.
Jeremy Hellickson (TB) - Hellickson has been a different pitcher in his career at home (3.07 ERA, 4.07 FIP) than on the road (3.71 ERA, 4.92 FIP). On Tuesday night he not only finds himself at home but against a Marlins offense that lacks power. The Marlins are dead-last in wOBA against RHP with a paltry .267 mark and their .085 ISO against RHP is the only ISO in the league below .105 against RHP. Hellickson's biggest weakness is power (career 1.20 HR/9 allowed) and with the Marlins lacking power it becomes hard to figure out how they're going to generate runs. Hellickson also represents the largest favorite (-240) of any SP going today, which suggests he has a strong chance of notching a win.
Kevin Gausman (BAL) - The Orioles right-hander was roughed up in his first major league outing but it was really just one bad inning. His price varies as much as any starter going today so check your site, but if you can find him as one of the cheapest options going I think he's a viable play on multiple SP sites; ESPECIALLY if Bryce Harper is out of the lineup. The Nationals are just 18th in wOBA against RHP but if you sub-out Harper and his incredible .468 wOBA against RHP for Roger Bernadina and his .302 wOBA that ranking takes a big dive. Harper was out of the lineup on Monday and he's considered questionable to go tonight. If Harper's in the lineup Gausman would be a very borderline start for me, but if Harper's out I think Gausman is a nice value on multiple SP sites where he's priced softly.
Additional SP Notes:
I don't mind taking the risk on Ryan Dempster in a large field tournament because of his great K Rate and the Phillies shaky offense without Chase Utley. Heck, Alfredo Aceves allowed just 1 ER over 6 innings and he has a 6.57 ERA and 1.95 WHIP after that start. Hyun-Jin-Ryu has been consistently strong and I think he pitches well tonight, I just like too many other values above him. There are scenarios where guys like Zach McAllister, Ervin Santana, and Edinson Volquez could all pitch well but I deem them on the unlikelier list of potential outcomes. They're high risk-modest reward plays in big tournament fields. Brandon Maurer is crazy cheap on some multi-SP sites and while I don't think he throws great tonight the price is such he'd be worth a risk as well. I'd be more inclined to use him on 3 SP sites than two.
Chris Sale (CHW) - Sale is the clear-cut #1 SP option to throw on Tuesday the only question is whether you'll be able to afford him. Sale has only allowed 1 ER in his last 3 starts (24 IP) and as a result his price has sky-rocketed. On multi-SP sites it would appear tough to use him and if you want him on DailyJoust it's going to cost about 45% of your overall budget. The Cubs are 24th in wOBA against LHP and they strike out 21.7% of the time against lefties, so it's a great matchup. You just really need to find the right price to use Sale tonight.
Matt Harvey (NYM) - If Harvey isn't priced as a stud take advantage. The Yankees offense is better against RHP than LHP but their .311 wOBA away from Yankee Stadium ranks just 17th in the league for road wOBA. Harvey's price is down a bit after a tough outing against the Reds. I think he bounces back nicely in the cross-town battle and takes advantage of a Yankees offense that ranks 23rd in wOBA over the last month.
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