Today, it is Friday which means it is my turn to share my opinions and ideas which are leading me to set my 6-26-15 Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks. The values are based off of DraftKings and based off the contests that start at 7:05 PM EST.
Disclaimer: The below picks are subject to last minute line-up decisions and weather.
Jake Arrieta, SP, Chicago Cubs, $9,800
There are a decent amount of high-end starting pitching options available tonight. If you want to bank on Max Scherzer continuing his superhuman performance, he is available for $14,000. There is also Johnny Cueto who is currently listed as Day-to-Day by DraftKings.
Corey Kluber is also available but has a higher ERA on the road this year (the Indians are playing in Baltimore). Meanwhile, Francisco Liriano has a higher ERA at home this year (the Pirates are playing at home against the Braves).
For my top SP slot, I ultimately decided to start Arrieta. He has had a very solid season, going 7-5 with a 3.07 ERA/2.90 FIP and a 9.49 K/9. While there is a matchup risk as the Cubs are playing the Cardinals, Arrieta has been strong on the road this season where he has a 2.78 ERA.
Noah Syndergaard, SP, New York Mets, $8,100
Syndergaard has struggled during the month of June to the tune of a 6.75 ERA this month and has a 4.03 ERA so far. However, he could be in for a strong performance tonight as the Mets will be playing at home against the Reds. Syndergaard has pitched very strongly at Citi Field where he has a 2.13 ERA. Also, his underlying stats indicate that he has been better than what his 2-4 record and 4.03 ERA indicates as he also has a 2.93 FIP and 9.67 K/9.
Buster Posey, C, San Francisco Giants, $4,400
Posey is in the midst of another solid season as he is hitting .287 with 11 HR and a 135 wRC+. Tonight, the Giants face RHP Chad Bettis. This gives Posey a match-up advantage as he is hitting .301 against righties this season and has hit 10 of his 11 HR against right-handed pitching.
Pedro Alvarez, 1B, Pittsburgh Pirates, $3,600
Alvarez is a feast or famine type player as he is only hitting .233 but hits for enough power and draws enough walks to at least be an league-average hitter (101 wRC+). With the Pirates facing a rookie RHP in Williams Perez who has a 2.78 ERA (but a 4.32 FIP), this could be a feast night for Alvarez. This season, Alvarez has hit better against righties and hit all 10 of his HR against right-handed pitching.
Dee Gordon, 2B, Miami Marlins, $4,400
Gordon has followed up his breakout season with an even better season for the Marlins (even though the Marlins season has been nowhere near as successful). He is currently hitting .352 and has stolen 25 bases. With the Marlins facing his former team (Dodgers) tonight, this could give up extra motivation to have a strong night.
Eduardo Nunez, 3B, Minnesota Twins, $3,600
Nunez has been a pleasant surprise for the Twins this season as he is hitting .302 with two HR. The vast majority of this success has come against righties (.345 AVG against RHP this season) which set him up to have a solid night.
Carlos Correa, SS, Houston Astros, $4,900
Correa is only 16 games into his MLB career but he has already demonstrated the ability to hit major league pitching. Thus far, he is hitting .300 with four HR and a 146 wRC+ and he has hit very well regardless of whether he is playing at home or on the road.
Torii Hunter, OF, Minnesota Twins, $3,900
So far, Hunter does not appear to be slowed down by age as he is hitting .262 with eight HR and a 104 wRC+ this season. He has hit slightly better against righties this season (.267) and has hit better on the road this season (the Twins are playing on the road against the Brewers tonight).
Byron Buxton, OF, Minnesota Twins, $3,700
Update: The research for this article was done prior to the announcement that Buxton is being placed on the 15-Day DL. In my lineup, I replaced him with Joey Butler who is available for the same price. Butler is hitting .327 with six HR this season. He has shown little signs of slowing down as his production this month is very similar to the numbers that he put up in May.
Buxton was the number two draft pick in the 2012 draft and he is currently 11 games into his MLB career. So far, he has struggled to the tune of a .189 AVG. However, he could be in line to turn this around tonight as he has fared slightly better against righties and he will be facing Brewers RHP Kyle Lohse who has not been very effective at getting opposing batters out this season.
Gregory Polanco, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates, $3,600
Polanco is off to a slow start this season as he is hitting .243 with three HR and 17 SB. However, his numbers are weighed down by struggles against lefties (which doesn’t apply to tonight’s matchup). His AVG is slightly better against righties (.259) making him a reasonable value play for tonight.
All statistics found on fangraphs.com
All statistics through 6/24/15