dfs baseball

Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks for DraftKings and FanDuel - Friday, August 31

Welcome back to another busy Friday in daily fantasy baseball as we have a full 15-game slate tonight. The slate, as a whole, is a little lacking in elite pitching but there are still some nice options in good spots. What a lack of elite pitching does create is a ton of opportunities for the bats. Let's jump in and take a look at the pitching options and some of the top teams to target tonight. Also, don't forget to grab a copy of my DFS MLB Cheatsheet that highlights all my top pitchers and stacks including advanced stats and then join Josh and I for the pre-lock show at 5:30 pm ET. Let's get started. 

Pitching Targets

Luis Severino(DK - $11,300 FD - $10,600)

The Tigers got to J.A. Happ last night but that won't stop me from using Luis Severino as my top pitcher tonight. First of all, the Tigers have been WAY better against left-handed pitching for the season and rank dead last against righties with a .288 wOBA and 78 wRC+. More good news as they also rank dead last in run scoring in the second half of the season. For Severino, the econ half didn't start out as planned giving up 23 earned runs in five starts but he has rebounded nicely giving up just two in each of his last two starts with eight strikeouts in each. For the season, he sits with an impressive 3.27 ERA and even better 3.16 xFIP and he has also flashed a ton of upside with a 10.31 K/9 and 12.2% swinging strike rate. All things considered, he is a terrific play in all formats tonight. 

Zack Wheeler(DK - $10,600 FD - $10,000)

Severino stands out as the top option on FanDuel tonight but on DraftKings there is a case to be made for Zack Wheeler at a $700 discount. He has been good all season and even better in the second half holding opponents to two or fewer earned runs in seven straight starts(6 ER total) for a 1.17 ERA. The Mets offense has finally provided some run support for the pitching staff as well so he has also picked up the win in six of those seven starts. Wheeler also gets an elite matchup tonight vs. the Giants who have been historically bad over the last 14 days with a .239 wOBA, 48 wRC+, and .090 ISO. Get Wheeler into your lineups in all formats tonight.

Framber Valdez(DK - $6,900 FD - $6,200)

Valdez was called up after making just two appearances at Triple-A and quickly made an impact for the Astros. He came in for Brad Peacock 10 days ago against the Mariners and ended up going 4.1 innings allowing just two hits with four strikeouts and just one walk. What stood out the most was his curveball that drops off the table. With that performance, he was granted another start five days later against the Angels and once again impressed going five innings and holding them to just two hits as well picking up his second big league win in as many appearances. Tonight he will get a second straight start against the Angels and while he isn't likely to have a long leash, he comes at a very low price making him an excellent SP2 option on DraftKings or very deep punt play on FanDuel allowing you to load up on all the bats. 

Stacking Targets

Texas Rangers vs. Stephen Gonsalves(MIN)

The Rangers are currently #1 in implied runs tonight and they are tremendous targets from a PTS/$ perspective as they are not that expensive on either site. What stands out the most is the matchup vs. rookie Stephen Gonsalves who has had a rough go of it through his first two major league starts. Control has been his biggest issue so far as he has walked six through 6.1 innings and in turn, has given up four earned runs in each start. He doesn't blow anything by hitters with a 90 mph fastball so if he continues to walk batters, he will continue to give up runs. The Rangers rank middle of the pack against lefties and while we normally target right-handed bats against lefties, I think we can target a couple lefties to get lower ownership. While Joey Gallo strikes out at 41% rate against lefties, he leads the team with a .357 woBA, 122 wRC+, and whopping .333 ISO in that split so don't count him out if back in the lineup.

Top Hitters to Stack - Rougned Odor, Jurickson Profar, Joey Gallo, Elvis Andrus

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Homer Bailey(CIN)

The park is definitely not one I target hitters in often but the matchup is too good to pass up tonight. Homer Bailey will start for the Reds tonight and is always a top target when on the mound. He has given up three or more earned runs in 14 of his 18 starts this season and has given up five or more earned runs in six of those starts. He has also lived up to his name by giving up 21 home runs in those 18 starts(18.1% HR/FB) and 42% hard contact overall. The Cards are a little more expensive but with a nice collection of value pitchers it shouldn't be hard to fit them in your GPP lineups tonight. 

Top Hitters to Stack - Matt Carpenter, Jose Martinez, Tyler O'Neill, Matt Adams