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It’s Thursday and we have eight games including a couple afternoon tilts to enjoy on another great day for baseball! Today I’m going to focus on the six evening games.

When playing DFS I tend to avoid day games when there are limited options like today because on FanDuel, once your first game starts, your lineup is set. If you find out your $5,000 player is taking the night off after your match starts, you are out of luck!

In tonight’s games, three have over/unders at eight or better including Toronto/Cleveland (8), Seattle/Houston (8.5), and Detroit/Kansas City (8) so we have some big bats to choose from.  T.J. House has been rocked each time he’s taken the mound this year and has to face the Blue Jays today so stacking some Jays is going to be popular and quite possibly the best way to grab some points. Houston’s offense has been coming together lately and with an 8.5 total might be worth targeting.

On the pitcher side, we have some high-priced guys, along with quite a few solid, but not spectacular throwers to choose from. For cash plays I think there is one guy at the top, but you have options for tournaments. I’m hesitant to use Stephen Strasburg or Jacob deGrom today, since there’s no clear favorite as they face each other, and each has had some hiccups since the season started.

Today, feels like a “stars and scrubs” sort of day, so let’s figure out which ones we want to target.

FanDuel Picks for Thursday 4/30

Here are today’s FanDuel picks for Thursday, so get your lineups ready!

Starting Pitchers

Chris Sale, Chicago White Sox, $10,000

For me Sale is the easy choice for a cash game today. The Sox are highly favored over the Twins, in fact Minnesota is the biggest underdog of the day. While they are middle of the pack when it comes to striking out in total, Minnesota shoots up to fourth in the league against left handed pitching, albeit in a small sample size this early in the season. Sale is the most expensive pitcher today, but there’s a reason for that.

Shelby Miller, Atlanta, $8,400

If you can’t justify the price tag on Sale, Miller is more on the affordable side. He’s put together a 2.05 ERA so far and Vegas likes his chances of picking up the W today. Miller lacks the strikeout potential of Sale, but he will let you get some of those Toronto bats in your lineup.

James Paxton, Seattle, $6,400

Here’s your ulcer inducing, gutsy tournament play for today. Paxton is 0-2 with a 6.86 ERA through four starts. Sounds interesting right? However, he’s also whiffing about a batter per inning so far and is going to face the Astros, baseball’s K kings. The Astros having been hitting lately and could rip Paxton up, or they could go down swinging as Paxton piles up K’s and gets his first win of the year. Oh, and he’s so cheap you can load up with the hitters of your choice!


Russell Martin, Toronto, $3,200

Martin brings a six game hitting streak into this matchup and even got slotted into the two hole once last week. He will probably show up somewhere around five or six in the order right behind all the big power bats in Toronto and get a chance at an RBI or two.

Evan Gattis, Houston, $2,700

After an abysmal start to the season Gattis has warmed and gone 6-for-14 over his last four games including two homers. He may go 0-for-4 with three K’s or hit a couple long balls so he’s a risk for sure. Then again, most catchers are.

First Basemen

Miguel Cabrera, Detroit, $4,900

Any time you can fit Cabrera into your lineup you do it. If you are saving money elsewhere Miggy has a nice matchup and its always comforting to see him in your first base slot.

Freddie Freeman, Atlanta, $3,400

Freeman has four multi-hit games in a row and faces the hittable Mike Leake. While Leake has been throwing fairly well, Freeman is hitting the ball solidly and a good bet to produce today.

Adam LaRoche, Chicago White Sox, $2,700

LaRoche has slowed down recently, but he can hit for power on any given day. He also slots in at fourth in the lineup most days and faces a righty that the Sox can score some runs on.

Second Basemen

Devon Travis, Toronto, $3,600

This guy has been nothing short of phenomenal so far. He’s hitting for both average and power at the top of a potent lineup. If T.J. House performs like he has in his previous starts Travis and all other Jays should have a fun day.

Micah Johnson, Chicago White Sox, $2,200

It would be great to see Chicago give Johnson a shot at the top of the order, particularly since Adam Eaton can’t seem to get over the Mendoza line. Alas, Johnson appears stuck at the bottom of the White Sox lineup. Still the rookie at the keystone for Chicago has been hitting a little lately and has plenty of speed. If you need to punt a position for the big bats elsewhere Micah may be able to get you a hit and pay off at the lowest price available.

Third Basemen

Josh Donaldson, Toronto, $4,200

Donaldson has been tagging everything that comes within reach and he gets a cake matchup today. I’m stacking Jays and Donaldson is the hottest of them right now.

Mike Moustakas, Kansas City, $3,000

The Royals third bagger has surprised everyone and continues to impress. He’s 9-for-17 in his last four games with three RBI and four runs scored. Moustakas has shown some ability to hit to the opposite field this year and it’s starting to look like he might actually be decent. Although, who cares for daily? We just care that he’s slapping baseballs with authority right now and he should be used until he shows otherwise.

Nick Castellanos, Detroit, $2,300

I threw in a bonus third basemen here since it seems like a stars and scrubs sort of day. Here’s a scrub with a decent matchup that lets you target other higher priority guys. Nick has been struggling a little but this kid has some talent and is cheap.


Marwin Gonzalez, Houston, $2,200

I’m not going to spend today on shortstop. Gonzalez batted second yesterday and if he’s at the top of a lineup that’s going to score some runs I’ll take him at this price.

Brad Miller, Seattle, $2,200

Another bottom of the barrel choice, Miller is a punt play you can take if you are not a Gonzalez fan. Houston’s pitching has over-performed to this point and if Scott Feldman comes to Earth maybe Miller gets his.


George Springer, Houston, $3,900

Springer swiped three bags in one day this week. Now if he could just start jacking baseballs out of the park with some routine all that hype starts making sense. Springer’s bat does appear to be waking from its slumber and I’m hopping on the George Springer bandwagon.

Yoenis Cespedes, Detroit, $3,200

Cespedes has a five game hitting streak going on including a double in each of the last three. When Cespedes is on he can have monster games and he looks to be turned on right now.

Screen Shot 2015-04-30 at 12.58.20 AMJacob Marisnick, Houston, $3,000

He called himself a “sleeper” prior to the season and it looks like he may have used the correct label. He may have been off most people’s radars to start but he’s popping up now. He’s hitting .380 although his BABIP is sky high at .425 so correction is coming. For now though he’s someone to target in the daily game. He does hit a full 100 points higher in his career against left handed pitching so today looks more juicy than normal for him.

Kevin Pillar, Toronto, $2,300

Toronto’s outfield gets a lot of attention with Jose Bautista, Dalton Pompey, and now Michael Saunders trotting out. However, Pillar has quietly been a serviceable cheap option that to this point has outhit Pompey and Saunders. He’s not likely to hit for a ton of power, but at $2,300 he has a good chance to get on base, score runs, and maybe grab a steal, well worth that price tag.

Good luck, and hopefully, our FanDuel picks for Thursday will help you bring home some wins!

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