Today's Featured DFS site is FantasyFeud. Click HERE to receive a 50% deposit bonus with the code: FANTISTICS
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 email@example.com if you have any further questions regarding daily fantasy baseball.
Weather: Weather looks pretty good across the board tonight. I'm not expecting any delays. The lone weather issue is in Philadelphia where they have a 30% chance of rain forecasted with isolated showers.
Matt Wieters (BAL) - I typically like to take advantage of Wieters when he's batting from his natural side, right-handed, as he's historically been much better from that side (.356 wOBA as RHB, .312 wOBA as LHB). However, Wednesday's action provides one of those rare occasions where I'm comfortable taking Wieters from the left side simply because it involves Jason Marquis. Marquis has allowed a .385 wOBA and 1.68 HR/9 to LHB's over the last three years. Baltimore's lineup has a number of LHB's in front of Wieters that should be able to get on-base frequently (McLouth, Markakis, Davis) and provide some RBI opportunities in front of Wieters. Although he's historically not that great of a hitter against RHP, I think Wednesday is a decent day to roll the dice on him.
Miguel Montero (ARZ) - I'm just as tired of writing about him as you are using him and getting shutout against bad RHP's. On Wednesday he faces a sinker-baller in Tim Hudson who has been really good against LHB's over the last three years (.298 wOBA). Montero has posted his best OPS against ground-ballers (as opposed to neutral or fly-ball pitchers) and he's way too cheap for his true talent level on most sites.
Jonathan Lucroy (MIL) - Lucroy and LHP go together like Mike Leone and maple syrup; meaning one will inevitably devour the other. Lucroy has hit .319/.354/.536 in his career against LHP, posting a .383 wOBA. This year his performance has been way down (.279 wOBA vs. LHP) but some of the indicators are still there. He's posted a 0.67 EYE, 21.2% LD Rate and 40% FB Rate. He's seeing the pitchers well and elevating but the ball just hasn't started leaving the yard yet. On Wednesday he gets a pretty decent lefty in Wandy Rodriguez (.315 wOBA allowed to RHB) in a tough pitchers park (PNC Park plays 17% below average in run scoring), but Lucroy's price and the matchup against LHP alone warrants consideration.
Ryan Doumit is another fine value play if you can find his price discounted. His recent hot streak has him priced as an above average C in a few places, which I wouldn't pay for, but if you can get him priced at average or slightly below average his career .342 wOBA against RHP matches up well with Dylan Axelrod. Carlos Ruiz is also still way too cheap on a number of sites and while he's always been better against LHP, Corey Kluber isn't a particularly threatening RHP.
Buster Posey (SF) - We always talk about Posey against LHP because he's so dominant but on days where you can find his salary a bit depressed and he's on the road against weak RHP, he's a fine play too. I think today qualifies as the Giants take on Ramon Ortiz, he of the career 1.43 HR/9 and 5.07 FIP. Ortiz somehow got through the last start in Boston with just 1 ER allowed in 5 innings but he walked 5 and struck out just 1. On the season in his 8 1/3 innings he's posted a 6.01 xFIP. He pitched his way out of the CUBS organization last year, which is a feat in and of itself. Posey is a career .294/.368/.446 (.354 wOBA) against RHP and if you can get him at a slight discount to the top catching options, I think that's the best play of the day.
Joe Mauer (MIN) - Mauer has been on-fire of late, hitting .447/.552/.660 in May, and on Wednesday he faces off with Dylan Axelrod who allows 1.37 HR/9 and a .324 wOBA to LHB's over the last three years. Mauer has always dominated RHP in a way no other peer at his position has posting a career .338/.426/.512 line against them (.400 wOBA). He's the best pure matchup of the day but because of the recent hot streak his price has shot up considerably on a number of sites. If he's still within reach of the other top catchers, he's the top play today.
Chris Davis (BAL) - Davis earns top play honors against the shaky Jason Marquis. We touched on Marquis' struggles against LHB's above and Davis has hit .345/.456/.726 against RHP this year (.484 wOBA). For his career Davis has hit .268/.328/.492 against RHP (.350 wOBA) so even if you feel this year's performance isn't representative he has a great track record historically against RHP. He just edges out Joey Votto for top play honors because of Davis' better HR potential.
Joey Votto (CIN) - Votto has a career .422 wOBA against RHP and gets to face Alex Sanabia who has allowed a .330 wOBA, 23% LD Rate, and 1.15 HR/9 against LHB's in his career. Like yesterday against Ricky Nolasco, Votto's best skills are LD's and walks and Sanabia yields them in bunches to LHB's.
Brandon Belt (SF) - Ramon Oritz is especially bad against LHB's as he's allowed a .427 wOBA and 2.1 HR/9 to LHB's when he's been allowed to pitch in the big leagues over the last three years. Belt has homered in two straight and has collected 5 XBH's in his last 5 games. He's starting to show some of that power we always hoped for and Wednesday's matchup is a perfect one to exploit. Belt looks like the top value play to me across sites today.
Adam Lind (TOR) - Ryan Vogelsong has always struggled against LHB's when pitching away from the spacious OF in San Francisco. Over the last three years he's allowed wOBA's of .338, .376, and .326 on the road against LHB's. In total he's yielded a .325 wOBA to LHB's buoyed by a 9% BB%. Adam Lind is walking at an amazing 18.6% clip against RHP this year (1.60 EYE) and has posted a .275/.407/.420 line. While his career has shown more pop than patience against RHP, this year the reverse has been true. Vogelsong has a tendency to reward both patience and power against LHB's and in the Rogers Centre (inflates run-scoring by 13%), Lind is a nice value option.
Yonder Alonso (SD) - It's rare you see Alonso in this space because he's basically a league average offensive 1B with unappealing power who plays in a tough park for LHB's. On Wednesday, though, he gets to play in Camden Yards (+117 Park Factor) and he gets to face homer-prone Freddy Garcia. Garcia has allowed a .347 wOBA, 22% LD Rate, and 1.28 HR/9 over the last three years against LHB's and he's already surrendered 2 HR's to the 20 left-handed batters he's faced this year. Alonso is average overall but on the road against RHP he's hit .300/.355/.428 in his career. Wednesday is a nice spot to get some value out of the Padres 1B.
Adam Dunn (CHW) - Dunn launched his 7th HR of the season last night and on Monday night he was robbed of a HR from Aaron Hicks. It would appear he's seeing the ball well of late and on Wednesday he gets to face Mike Pelfrey who has a yielded a .342 wOBA to LHB's over the last three years. We all know Dunn's biggest issue is the strikeout and Pelfrey only strikes out 12% of the LHB's he faces which gives Dunn a better chance at making contact. He's always a boom-or-bust type play, but Wednesday the metrics suggest the matchup provides a bit more change of boom than normal for Dunn.
Other 1B Notes:
Lance Berkman gets a tasty matchup with Dan Straily (.388 wOBA allowed to LHB's last 3 years) but I prefer some of the other high-priced 1B bats over him tonight. Ryan Howard also gets a great matchup against Corey Kluber (.366 wOBA, 25% LD Rate, 1.07 HR/9 to LHB's) in a friendly hitting environment but I didn't prefer some of the other value plays to him.
Robinson Cano (NYY) - Hisashi Iwakuma is a very good RHP and he has some reverse splits (.278 wOBA allowed to LHB's), but the 44% FB Rate allowed this year to LHB's makes me think Cano, who is always a monster at home, can take advantage. Cano is hitting .381/.447/.571 against RHP at home this year and that backs up a .368/.423/.753 line against RHP at home last year. Cano, even against a good RHP, is the top play today at the 2B position.
Brandon Phillips and Chase Utley both have tremendous matchups and are comparable top plays. If you can find either at a deep discount to Cano, I'm fine using them. If they're all priced similarly I prefer Cano of the group.
Rickie Weeks (MIL) - The Brewers are Top 5 in MLB against LHP and on Wednesday they face Wandy Rodriguez. Rodriguez is a better LHP than last night's opponent, Jeff Locke, as he allows just a .315 wOBA against RHB's, but a number of Brewers seem to see him well. For his career Weeks has posted a .265/.395/.446 line that is heavy on plate patience (15.4% BB%) and not too light on power either (.181 ISO). For Weeks bargain-basement price, he's a nice gamble.
Jed Gyorko (SD) - Gyorko has struggled in his first big league season (.250/.315/.386) and as a result his price is way down on most sites. He's been better against LHP than RHP but he's also handled breaking stuff better than fastballs so far. Freddy Garcia throws a lot of breaking stuff and is homer-prone to both sides of the plate. Gyorko is a bit of a boom-or-bust candidate today, but I think the Padres put some runs on the board and Gyorko's price is friendly across sites.
UPDATE: Omar Infante is leading off for the Tigers against LHP Dallas Keuchel. If you can find a nice price on Infante the matchup is strong and the lineup positioning provides a significant boost to his value
I really hate this position today, so the options below are basically the best "punt" options available. Troy Tulowitzki and Jean Segura have priced themselves out on most sites and while Segura gets to face a LHP, which he's been crushing, I'm still skeptical of his overall profile and I'm not willing to pay Tulo prices for him. Tulowitzki gets a tough matchup against Jeff Samardzija who can be homer prone against RHB's but otherwise is very tough on them.
Jimmy Rollins (PHI) - Corey Kluber allows a .366 wOBA to LHB's that includes a 25% LD Rate. The Phillies offense is predicated on LHB's destroying RHP and Jimmy Rollins at the top of the order should benefit most. Rollins has been slightly better in his career against RHP (.332 wOBA) than LHP (.321 wOBA) and he's always been way better at home (.340 wOBA) than on the road (.318 wOBA). On most sites his performance this year has him priced as an average SS option which is a nice entry point in a favorable matchup. On sites where he's priced as an average SS, he most likely represents the best value of the day.
Brandon Crawford (SF) - Crawford got off to a crazy start this year but his performance has normalized a bit as he's hit .224/.304/.327 since April 28th. The regression has helped his price come back down into value territory on a number of sites and with SS being a very weak position for options on Wednesday he's one of the few values I like. Crawford has hit just .245/.315/.368 in his career against RHP but Ramon Ortiz is so bad against lefties (.427 wOBA allowed last three years) that I'll take my chances with just about any LHB. This might be the only time all season you see Crawford in this space, which speaks more to Ortiz than it does to Crawford (along with the lack of depth at the SS position today).
Zack Cozart (CIN) - He's hitting 2nd in the CIN lineup against one of the worst SP of the day. Alex Sanabia has also been worse against RHB's (.347 wOBA) than LHB's (.333 wOBA) in his career. If Cozart for some reason were moved out of the 2nd slot he'd lose a ton of value, but in that spot with a bunch of great bats around him he has some value if you can find him at a cheap price.
Jhonny Peralta's price is pretty elevated but he hits LHP pretty well and is in a projected high scoring offense. He's not a "value" play or a "top" play, but he's not a bad option to pay a premium for on a tough day at the SS position.
Miguel Cabrera (DET) - Today is one of those days I might try to do everything I can to make room for Miguel Cabrera. Cabrera destroys all pitching but he has been a touch better against lefties in his career (.316/.430/.547 with a 1.02 EYE) and Dallas Keuchel is a below average LHP. Keuchel has surrendered a .368 wOBA to RHB's, including a 1.58 HR/9 allowed over the last three years.
Pablo Sandoval (SF) - I'm not sure how much of a "value" Sandoval is, but the matchup with Ramon Ortiz will make him one of the more attractive 3B options for tonight's slate. Sandoval has hit .307/.359/.513 in his career against RHP, good for a .370 wOBA. He's the next best option at 3B behind Miguel Cabrera and he's probably priced well below him. If you don't want to spend on Miggy, Sandoval is a phenomenal backup plan.
Conor Gillaspie (CHW) - Gillaspie is becoming a frequent play in this space against RHP because of his low price tag. For his career Gillaspie has hit a respectable .277/.346/.437 against RHP (.340 wOBA) and this year he's hitting .301/.366/.482. Mike Pelfrey makes it pretty easy on LHB's allowing a .342 wOBA and he strikes out less than 13% of them. Gillaspie typically has hit in the middle of the White Sox order against RHP which should allow him to continue to be a strong value play.
Chase Headley (SD) - Headley, like Sandoval, isn't really as much of a value play as he is just a strong play. Headley has been dominant against RHP when he doesn't have to face it in PETCO. For his career he's hit .310/.390/.481 against RHP on the road and the matchup with Freddy Garcia in Camden Yards is one of the stronger ones of the day.
Other 3B Notes:
David Freese is simply too cheap on a number of sites. I'm probably heading in the direction of some of the more expensive 3B options today, but Freese is a viable option against what looks like a broken version of Shaun Marcum. Todd Frazier almost earned a write-up against Sandoval and Headley but I just like the other two a bit more. Aramis Ramirez has awesome PvB against Wandy Rodriguez and does hit LHP better than RHP in his career, but his price was a bit more challenging than Headley or Sandoval in the places I checked and the ballpark in PIT is much less conducive to run-scoring.
In order to be able to publish in advance of the early start today, the OF full write-ups for the OF recommendations list is a bit shorter. Please make sure to reference some of the names on the listed players below as there are a number of strong plays listed. I've picked out the three strongest at different price points, in my eyes, to highlight those; however, there are plenty of other great OF plays on Wednesday in the lists below the write-ups.
Ryan Braun (MIL) - Braun has been out of this world against LHP in his career as he's posted a .346/.417/.661 line in over 950 PA's against LHP. He's also done a lot of damage in his individual matchups with Wandy Rodriguez, going 16-42 with 6 2B's, 4 HR's, and a nice 6:6 BB:K Ratio. He's priced as the top OF option today and with good reason. If you have the funds necessary to spend in the OF I think Braun is the clear-cut top play.
Josh Hamilton (LAA) - Perhaps it's anecdotal but the swings I've seen of late from Josh Hamilton have looked much better than what I saw early in the season. The power is starting to come around as he's racked up 5 XBH's in the last 6 games and he hasn't struck out in his last three games. Hamilton is a notorious streak hitter and with many sites pricing him at a point that you're being dared not to take him, I think today is a day he should be heavily owned. Wade Davis is below average against LHB's (.335 wOBA allowed, 1.05 HR/9) and much of his performance has come in great pitching environments. I think Hamilton is a strong value play tonight.
Nick Markakis (BAL) - Markakis is hitting 3rd for the Orioles in that tasty matchup with Jason Marquis. He's hit .299/.361/.430 with a 2.40 EYE against RHP this year and for his career he has a .364 wOBA against RHP. In a premier lineup spot to do damage against arguably the worst RHP going today, Markakis is a phenomenal value play.
Other Potential Value Plays: Domonic Brown (PHI), Jason Kubel (ARZ), Brett Gardner (NYY), BJ Upton (ATL), Travis Snider (PIT), Alejandro De Aza (CHW), Nate Schierholtz (CHC), Gerardo Parra (ARZ), Jon Jay (STL), Avisail Garcia (DET), Melky Cabrera (TOR), Xavier Paul (CIN)
Under-priced Star OF's to Target: Matt Kemp (LAD), Jay Bruce (CIN), Carlos Beltran (STL)
Additional Expensive Star OF's to Target: Shin Soo Choo (CIN). Torii Hunter (DET), Nate McLouth (BAL), Alex Gordon (KC)
David Price (TB) - I'll continue to take my chances on a discounted Price (see what I did there?) at home pitching in the friendly, albeit empty, confines of the Trop. Price has a career 2.76 ERA at home with a 3.17 FIP. He strikes out more batters at home than on the road (24% K% vs. 21% K%) and he of course limits more HR's as well. He also has a really nice history against the Red Sox. Over the last three years he's gone 7-3 with a 2.86 ERA in 13 starts against Boston. The Red Sox are a very good hitting team but away from Fenway they're a bit easier to deal with. In what figures to be a pitchers' duel between Lester and Price, I think Price's upside with strikeouts makes him a slightly more valuable target.
Ian Kennedy (ARZ) - The Braves strike out in 26% of their PA's against RHP and while they do hit for quite a bit of power (.161 ISO), the strikeouts pay big dividends in daily fantasy baseball. Ian Kennedy's price is way down due to a slow start to the season that includes a 4.83 ERA and 4.78 FIP. Kennedy's K Rate is down modestly but he's generating the same amount of swinging strikes as usual, his velocity is intact, and he's actually increased his chase rate. I think Kennedy's slow start is a bit fluky and against a strikeout prone opponent in Atlanta, I consider him a solid value play, albeit a risky one.
Alexei Ogando (TEX) - Ogando always seems to be priced 10-20% lower than I'd expect. I think it's because he was a reliever last year but I'm not entirely sure. This year he's posted a 3.09 ERA through his first 8 starts and while his peripherals suggest he's due for a bit of regression (4.32 xFIP), Oakland is a perfect environment for his FB tendencies. The A's lineup is also watered down with injuries and over the last two weeks they've mustered just a .292 wOBA. I think this a nice spot to deploy Ogando as a 2nd or 3rd SP option.
Phil Hughes (NYY) - Running out Hughes in daily fantasy is always a bit unsettling because he tends to be elite or horrific depending on whether balls are leaving the yard or not. On Wednesday he faces a Mariners lineup that strikes out in 22% of their PA's against RHP and ranks 27th in wOBA against RHP with a .293 mark. Hughes is coming off a rough outing in which he allowed 6 ER's in 5 2/3 innings to the Royals and as a result his price ticked down a bit on most sites. I'm comfortable with where he's priced and think he bounces back nicely tonight. He and Kennedy, admittedly, are probably both better used in big tournaments because of their volatility.
Mike Leake (CIN) - It's time for your daily dose of "stream against the Marlins". The Marlins rank dead last in baseball with a .264 wOBA against RHP. Mike Leake isn't great (career 4.42 FIP) but he has a 3.88 career ERA on the road and his biggest issue is HR's. He's allowed 1.25 HR/9 for his career but the Marlins have just 12 HR's against RHP all year. It's a perfect fit for Leake's skills to take advantage of a weak-hitting Marlins lineup. He doesn't have the big upside that Hughes or Kennedy has, but he's probably one of the safer value plays today.
Max Scherzer (DET) - Last time Scherzer faced the Astros he allowed 1 ER on 3 hits and 2 BB's over 8 innings while striking out 8 and getting the win. He's far and away the safest starter going today and his elite K Rate gives him the highest upside as well. The Tigers at -370 favorites are also far and away the biggest favorite going. It's hard not to consider Scherzer the best stud SP to use today.
Shelby Miller and Jon Lester both intrigue me from the other high-priced options. I think both throw well today. I just would opt for David Price's value over the two. Yovani Gallardo is also interesting with his price mildly depressed across sites and pitching in a great environment, but I was hoping for a deeper discount.