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FanDuel MLB DFS Lineup Picks (4/4/18): Daily Fantasy Baseball Advice


What a wild night of baseball we had! Christian Villanueva with three home runs? The unpredictability of baseball is fantastic, albeit at times frustrating for fantasy owners. But the season is long, and there are thousands of chances at redemption - like today for instance. The major league baseball gods have blessed us with aces upon aces of pitchers taking the bump, and a pretty even slate with a six game slate at mid-day and a five game slate for the Main contests this evening.

Before we dig in, I like to call out a few Vegas lines that can/should be of interest as we decide on pitchers and hone in on a stack or three. At the top of the run projections for the Early slate, we have the Yankees, who currently have the only projection of five runs or greater (right at 5.0), followed by the Astros (4.9) and the Tigers at 4.8. The Tigers are of interest because of the movement this morning - their original projection was just 4.4 and sharp money has pushed that up .4. The .4 may sound insignificant, but that is pretty major movement). Of course, these lines can help us decide on pitchers, too, and who to avoid. Right now, the lowest projections for the Early slate are the Phillies (3.3) and the Rays (3.1).

In this article, I will be providing you with my daily fantasy baseball lineup picks for FanDuel on 4/4/18. The lineup picks will range from some of the elite players to mid-priced options and most of all - value plays. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me up on Twitter @kpLuch.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our season-long articles, 15 in-season lineup tools and over 200 days of expert DFS research/tools. Sign Up Now!

 

FanDuel DFS Pitchers

Luis Severino - SP, vs TBR ($10,600) - Early Slate

We legitimately have an ace party today - well, in this early slate - and deciding who to roster is difficult. If you've been up debating who to throw in the pitcher spot, you aren't alone. There are honestly not any "bad" calls you can make here, but I think Severino is the correct one - at least in Cash games. Yes, the stadium in the Bronx is more friendly to hitters than it is pitchers, but that's about the only 'red flag' I can pinpoint for Severino. He has a very strong offense backing him (top run projection of the early slate) and the Rays are projected for the lowest run total at 3.1. The Tampa Bay lineup is just, for lack of a better term, not pretty. They lack power throughout and their current projected lineup struck out in ~25% of their at-bats versus right-handed pitching. As for Severino himself, he was quite brilliant throughout much of the year and offers elite strikeout upside. He posted a 1.04 WHIP, 0.96 HR/9 and 10.9 K/9 in 2017. You should be able to fire him up with confidence today as the Yankees are -234 on the moneyline.

Also Consider for Early Slate: Aaron Nola - SP, at NYM ($,8500) - GPP; Noah Syndegaard - SP, vs PHI ($10,800) - Cash/GPP

 

Jon Gray - SP, at SDP ($8,000) - Main Slate 

Gray has really, really big strikeout potential tonight and I'm investing in him in tournaments for the Main slate tonight. Opposite of what we had for the Main slate, the pitching options are a little dicier. There aren't many clear cut favorites and the run projections for each team are mostly hovering in the 4.2 to 4.7 runs range (with a few exceptions). The Padres currently have the lowest mark - not by much - but the 3.4 runs is a pretty lowly figure. Take that into account, along with the big strikeout upside and the fact that Gray escapes the pitcher's hell that is Coors Field, and I think my high interest is quite warranted.

Also Consider for Main Slate: Sean Manaea - SP, vs TEX ($8,300) - Cash/GPP

FanDuel DFS Infielders

Gary Sanchez - C, vs TBR ($3,400) - Early Slate

I realize we no longer need to roster catchers, but we can't ignore a great one in a good spot. As I mentioned upstairs, the Yankees have the loftiest run projection today and they are quite familiar with Blake Snell. Sanchez is one of the best hitting catchers in baseball (if not the best) and he is particularly adept at crushing southpaws. He offers big time power upside with his .259 ISO split, but also boasts a pretty high cash game floor thanks to the game context and his .374 wOBA split.

Matt Olson - 1B, vs TEX ($3,400) - Main Slate

My reaction to seeing that Matt Olson will face a right-hander (Doug Fister, no less) is like that of a kid who was just dropped into a candy shop. I only wish I could roster a few shares tonight. Fister turned it around a bit with a solid campaign last season, but he's still a pitcher than can be exploited. Olson boasts not just a wOBA split over .400 for the past year, but an ISO one at .455, too. Those are elite numbers, and you're getting them today at a mid-range price in a good matchup.

Marwin Gonzalez - 1B, vs BAL ($2,800) - Early Slate

The name of the game in the early slate is to find value (and upside when possible) while avoiding the bevy of aces taking the mound. We have that in Houston with Marwin Gonzalez, who has a bargain bin price, faces one of the softer pitchers of the Early slate, and has a great lineup surrounding him. The Astros are currently projected for the second highest run total in the Early, and I'm a fan of his .418 wOBA and .238 ISO splits against right-handed pitching from the 2017 season.

Whit Merrifield - 2B, at DET ($3,500) - Early Slate

Let me start out by saying I am a big fan of Jose Altuve at the position, too, but the price is incredibly steep. And since I am paying up at pitcher, I'm going to try to save a few dollars in the infield where I can - without sacrficing much floor or upside. Enter Whit Merrifield, who hits high in this Royals order and posted impressive numbers versus lefties last season - .342 wOBA and a .205 ISO. The wOBA wont blow you away, but he was victim to a pretty low BABIP last season despite being a line drive hitter. I think he can find some gaps in that big Comerica Park outfield today.

Jose Ramirez - 3B, at LAA ($3,000) - Early Slate

Didn't think I'd ever find second base options more appealing than the ones at third, but here we are on the Early slate. Whether it be a mess of guys off to slow starts or just poor matchups from a stadium and splits perspective, there isn't a lot to love at third. Ramirez is my choice for the cost savings and a matchup I think he can win more easily than some of his third base counterparts. He finally grabbed a few hits last night, and we know what kind of player he can be when he starts streaking. Last season, he posted fantastic splits against lefties, too, highlighted by his .413 wOBA and .607 slugging percentage.

Corey Seager - SS, at ARI ($3,500) - Early Slate

Corey has come out of the gates a little slow, but he has a park upgrade and a matchup to exploit in Arizona. Patrick Corbin isn't a bad pitcher, but he lacks control and I think a patient hitter like Seager will flex his .390 wOBA and .207 ISO splits and win this battle. Helping to secure the spot at my shortstop position is the fact the Dodgers boast a top four run projection (4.5) of the 12 teams playing in the afternoon.

 

FanDuel DFS Outfielders

Leonys Martin - OF, vs KCR ($2,500) - Early Slate

Value and upside in the form of an outfielder for under $3k is a beautiful thing - particularly on a slate where we'll need to pay up for pitching (at least in Cash games). Martin posted some fantastic splits last season against southpaws, too, boasting a .286 ISO split and a .359 wOBA. He does a great job of harnessing power, too, showcased by the fact that 40% of his batted balls against lefties had an exit velocity of 95 miles per hour or more. The fact that the Tigers run projection keeps climbing up.

Giancarlo Stanton - OF, vs TBR ($4,700) - Early Slate

The four strikeout game is in the past, and as are the boos from Yankee "fans". I have a feeling Giancarlo bounces back in a big way against the overmatched Blake Snell. It's not just a hunch, though. Look at these numbers he posted against southpaws last season and tell me he isn't worth paying up for - .517 wOBA and a .444 ISO. As if you needed any more convincing, 47% of his batted balls against lefties had an exit velocity of 95 miles per hour or greater in 2017.

Marcell Ozuna - OF, at MIL ($3,500) - Main Slate

Mr. Ozuna grades out quite nicely tonight in his matchup against Jhoulys Chacin in the hitter friendly Miller Park. The Cardinals are projected for one of the higher run projections of the Main slate at 4.7, and I do like the slight advantage being on the road brings as they'll take their turns hitting nine times no matter how badly they tarnish Chacin's ERA. Last season, Ozuna put up very strong numbers against right-handers, including a .256 ISO split that is .138 points higher than his mark against southpaws.

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