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FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Lineup Picks (4/11/17): MLB DFS Advice


Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. We've got a pretty big slate to gear up for tonight, with the Main contest packed with 10 games, beginning at 7:05. There are two late-afternoon games as well, with the Twins and Tigers facing off at 1:10 and the White Sox at Indians following shortly after, with first pitch at 4:10 Eastern.

Before we talk stacks and player selections, let's take a look at few Vegas lines that should be helpful when making lineup decisions. The team with the hgihest projected run total today is, unsurprisingly, the Rockies (6.6). The Rockies are taking on the Padres at Coors, and they're facing a highly exploitable pitcher in Jered Weaver. The top of that lineup taking on a pitcher who throws batting practice fastballs at Coors Field is a recipe for success. Outside of the Rockies, the Blue Jays (5.6) and the Red Sox (5) and Padres (5) are all intriguing picks for stacking, as they not only have the highest projected run totals, but they face fairly weak opposing pitchers in favorable parks for hitters. As for moneyline favorites, which can be helpful when deciding your pitchers - particularly for cash contests - the biggest for tonight are the Indians (-242) by a long shot, followed by the Blue Jays (192) and the Pirates (-190).

In this article, I will be providing you with my daily fantasy baseball lineup picks for FanDuel on 4/11/17. The DFS lineup picks will range from some of the elite players to mid-priced options and value plays on FanDuel. Shall we dance?

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Offensive Stacks

I want to give you something here other than the Rockies, Blue Jays, and Red Sox stacks that I briefly mentioned above. To note, those are all still in play. Keep an eye on the lineups as they come out, as the Red Sox have been hampered by the flu this past week.

Cleveland Indians against James Shields

Anyone who has seen my columns knows I love to pick on James Shields. He mixes in a few good starts every once in a while and can still punch out a guy or two, but more often than not, picking on Shields leads to profitability. In the past season, he's allowed a HR/9 mark over two and his WHIP is absolutely abysmal at 1.661. The Indians lineup intrigues me not so much from their deep threat guys, but because they pack talented hitters in their order 1-6 and happen to make tons and tons of contact. Their projected lineup for today has only struck out against right-handed pitching in 21 percent of their at-bats over the last year, which is the third-lowest mark out of the 24 teams taking the field today. On top of that, plenty of Indians are priced favorably with excellent splits against righties. My favorite Cleveland guys tonight are Carlos Santana, Edwin Encarnacion, Francisco Lindor and Tyler Naquin. If you need a "punt" type, look to Austin Jackson.

Also Consider: Baltimore Orioles versus Drew Pomeranz

 

FanDuel DFS Pitchers

Projecting pitcher statistics and DFS outcomes is always difficult to do, no matter how successful you might be at doing so. That said, I can't ever recall a more difficult week to select pitchers for cash and GPP contests. The earlier parts of the season are always trickier for pitchers, but these matchups in particular have really kept me up at night. Okay, now for the good stuff.

Carlos Carrasco - P, vs CWS ($9,900)

I wouldn't feel good about suggesting anyone outside of Carrasco today for cash game contests. I'll still have to roll the dice for the later contests, but there isn't a real "safe" option to be found. Carrasco, however, is in an excellent spot. The hard-throwing right-hander is coming off one of his best seasons (3.44 SIERA , 2.66 xFIP)  and returns home today to take on an average lineup in what is a great park for hitters. Carrasco's price is such that he can hit and surpass it, and based on the Vegas lines and run total projections, Carrasco has a good chance to be backed with a lot of run support, potentially putting himself in line for the win. Additionally, Carrasco posted a 9.6 K/9 last season and has the opportunity to punch out quite a few White Sox today. Chicago's projected lineup has struck out in nearly 29% of their at-bats versus right-handed pitchers in the past year.

Robbie Ray - P, at SFG ($7,500)

Robbie Ray is quite the polarizing figure in the DFS community. You likely either love him or hate him, and I wouldn't be surprised if those feelings are directly tied to his outcomes - which are quite the broad spectrum. Just to note before I get any further - I am only suggesting Ray as a tournament play. Why? Well, as I alluded to, his point total outcomes are way too broad to trust in a cash game situation. Secondly, he has an excellent K/9 in the past year at 11.7 - the highest of today's slate -  and takes on a Giants team in San Francisco in what is a huge park upgrade from the pitcher's perspective. As such, Ray has the highest projected strikeout total, and his salary is in that range where you can comfortably stack around him or fill your lineup with power-hitting studs.

Also Consider: J.A. Happ - P, vs MIL ($8,500)

 

FanDuel DFS Infielders

James McCann - C, vs MIN ($2,200)

As I often do, I'm hunting for power and a low price among the catchers crop. Today, that value-power combo presents itself in the form of James McCann. The burly catcher is off to a solid start in the young 2017 season. What is most attractive about him in this spot, though, is that he owns monster splits from the past 365 days when facing left-handed pitching. His .289 ISO gives him a home run ceiling and the strong .368 wOBA split helps to elevate his floor. He's quite the bargain at this price.

Also Consider: Russell Martin - C, vs MIL ($2,500) - GPP

 

Carlos Santana - 1B, vs CWS ($3,800)

Carlos Santana is the mix of so many different types of baseball players, he almost reminds me of the unicorns we are seeing in the NBA in the likes of Karl-Anthony Towns and Kristaps Porzingis. He's a leadoff hitter that can hit for great average, has tremendous pop, and strikes out very little. When he's facing weak right-hander, as he is today, he easily shoots up my "draft" list. The switch-hitting Santana does a ton of damage on the left side (where he'll settle in tonight) and owns a .376 wOBA and .276 ISO split in the past year.

Also Consider: Mark Reynolds - 1B, vs SDP (4,000) - GPP

 

Robinson Cano - 2B, vs HOU ($3,100)

If you looked at Cano's numbers thus far and then looked at the low price tag, you probably did the same double-take I did. Nonetheless, I'm not going to complain about a player being under-priced - especially a player I'll be deploying tonight in both cash game and tournament formats. Cano is attractive thanks not only to his blazing start, but the impressive splits he owns from 2016 and on  - .382 wOBA and a .251 wOBA.

Also Consider: Devon Travis - 2B, vs MIL ($2,400) - GPP, value

 

Josh Donaldson - 3B, vs MIL ($3,800)

This Blue Jays lineup may not be the destoyer-of-pitcher-worlds it once was, but it still has some really nice pieces to it. In addition to Devon Travis being on of my favorite infield plays, Donaldson gets the call too. The only thing to be mindful of is his status. He's currently listed as Questionable, but he has played (and raked) in the previous series. If he gets the call in the two-hole, plug him into your lineups as it's hard to find someone with such a high floor (.401 wOBA split) with power (.264 ISO split) in this price range. He also gets a very favorable matchup against Wily Peralta.

Also Consider: Brock Holt - 3B, vs BAL ($2,400) - punt

 

Asdrubal Cabrera - SS, at PHI ($2,900)

If you can afford him, a guy like Francisco Lindor might be a safer play, but Cabrera has promise today as either a GPP play or a value/punt in cash game formats. The reasons I like Cabrera in this spot? There are a few. For starters, he gets a ballpark upgrade in Philadelphia and he faces off against new Phillie Clay Buccholz - he who is no stranger to giving up a few gopher balls here and there. In the past season, Cabrera has shown an ability to hit for average and pop from the left side, as marked by his .337 wOBA and .202 ISO splits.

Also Consider: Francisco Lindor - SS, vs CWS ($3,800) - cash

 

FanDuel DFS Outfielders

Charlie Blackmon - OF, vs SDP ($4,500)

If you're sick of seeing Blackmon's name, well, too bad. I like to give some variance to my picks, but I can't stray away from Blackmon this evening, despite riding him for the past couple nights. He's in an excellent spot tonight, leading off for the team with the highest projected run total in a game taking place at Coors Field, all while facing Jered Weaver. Blackmon crushes right-handed pitching - .409 wOBA, .279 ISO in the past year - and as such, he should be able to crush value in the 5+ at-bats he gets.

Andrew Benintendi - OF, vs BAL ($3,100)

Benny Biceps is off to a solid start in year "two" (he was called up late last season) of his major league campaign. The young outfielder find himself in an opportune spot tonight with the Flu Sox. Thanks to sickness and a number of injuries, Benintendi will likely shoot up the order tonight to the two-hole, giving him extra value as he's likely to see an extra at-bat because of it. Additionally, he's attractive because his splits are so impressive. In the past year, he's posted a .392 wOBA and .234 ISO split.

Manuel Margot - OF, vs SDP ($3,500)

One of the top Pardres' prospects has entered 2017 looking like he has something to prove. The young outfielder has shown an ability to hit the ball out of the park while hitting for average, as he's already posted multi-home run and multi-hit games. He's in a good spot tonight not only because he and his teammates can pick on the inexperienced Antonio Senzatela, but also because this contest is taking place in the thin air of Denver at Coors Field.

Also Consider: Mitch Haniger - OF, vs HOU ($2,000) - value play; Tyler Naquin - OF, vs CWS ($2,400) - value, GPP, stack

 

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