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I gotta be honest. I felt a little bit of relief when I read Chris Meyers’ picks yesterday and read that he was easing himself into the season as far as DFS goes. I thought I was the only one who needed to get the feel for the season before going full speed ahead with my DraftKings picks.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ll be using many of the same methods as I always do to build my DFS lineups, but even after studying the player pool relentlessly for my season-long leagues, I still feel like I need to get acquainted with the 2016 baseball season.

I’m a firm believer that each season takes on a life of its own and you first have to look in the eyes of the beast before you can conquer it. With that in mind, my DraftKings picks today will be geared toward 50/50 contests and the safety net of the platoon advantage. I’ll also do my best to avoid any questionable weather situations, but as with all Daily Fantasy Baseball advice, it’s your job to keep an eye on lineups and weather right up until go time.

With that little bit of melodrama out of the way, let’sget to the task at hand.

Here are the links you need to prepare for the night’s action and of course following that are my Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks for Wednesday, April 6, 2016.

Links for MLB Weather:

MLB Injuries:

Vegas Lines:

Probable Pitchers and Lineups:

Batter vs. Pitcher: I’m not much of a believer in Batter vs. Pitcher numbers. You can read why here. Still, a lot of people use this data and I have to admit occasionally taking a pick when I make my DraftKings picks, so here are the two that are most useful in my opinion.

DraftKings Strategy for the Day

DraftKings uses two pitchers, which I am a big fan of. It spreads some risk and gives an advantage to those of us who fancy ourselves pitching prognosticators. In order to give plenty of people time to digest these picks, I’m focusing on the evening slate. That means we miss out on Jose Fernandez’s 2016 debut, but we’ve still got plenty of pitchers to choose from. With many teams now playing their third and fourth games, we’re also starting to see some pitchers we’ll be happy to stack against.

DraftKings Picks for Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Top Starting Pitchers for the Day

My strategy in two-pitcher formats is to use one stud in a nice matchup, and one less expensive pitcher with solid strikeout potential. Today is custom made for this approach. Stephen Strasburg, who seems primed for a huge season, draws Bud Norris and a shaky Braves lineup. He’s the most expensive pitcher on DK today, but I’ll get some of that back by using the least expensive pitcher as well.

That would be Juan Nicasio who goes up against a Cardinals offense that seems more strikeout prone than in years past. Nicasio had the crazy good spring, but many people are writing it off as a fluke. There’s a chance that’s true, but I’ve always loved his stuff and he wouldn’t be the first pitcher that Ray Searage has turned around. I’ll take his strikeout upside and hope he can build off his spring.

Two Pitchers to Target for Stacking

When I say target, I do not mean you want them in your lineups. Instead these are pitchers you want to think about when choosing your hitters. It’s kind of like racial profiling, but a whole lot less controversial. Stacking is not always a smart play in 50/50 contests, but I’ll throw these out there.

  1. Bud Norris vs. Washington  – At one time Bud Norris looked like a pitcher on the way to being a Top 25 MLB starter. That one time is not now. I look for Bryce Harper and Daniel Murphy to have some nice swings tonight.
  2. Kyle Gibson @ Baltimore Orioles – I have to admit I kind of like Gibson for season-long leagues, but not in that ballpark against that lineup.

Top DraftKings Picks at Each Position

Here are two choices at each position; one is the best bet for production and the other is a lower priced option with a favorable outlook.

Catcher:

I’m not a fan of spending big on catching. Once you get past Buster Posey and Kyle Schwarber, it’s just a big pile of mediocrity. So the plan is to use that mediocrity when they have the platoon advantage.

Josh Phegley vs. Carlos Rodon (LHP) – Oakland seems pretty commited to a strict platoon, with Phegley getting the starts against lefties. He’s a solid hitter, and though I like Rodon for the season, I think it will take him some time to find a groove.

Jason Castro vs. Michael Pineda (RHP) – Castro was not good last year, but his bat is far from anemic. Pineda is typically tough early in the year, but I like the matchup in that park.

First Base:

Joey Votto vs. Aaron Nola (RHP) – Nola is a solid young pitcher, but Votto is an on-base machine. DraftKIngs awarding 2 points for a walk really plays to his strengths.

Ryan Zimmerman vs. Bud Norris (RHP) – Zimmerman doesn’t have the platoon advantage, but he bats in between Bryce Harper and Daniel Murphy, both of whom should do some damage tonight. If Zimmerman can stay healthy I have a feeling I’ll be using him a lot this year as my reasonably priced alternative.

Second Base:

Daniel Murphy vs. Bud Norris (RHP) – Somebody tell him it’s not the postseason! He homered again in the Nats first game and I see a career-year on the way. I’d like him more batting second, but the added RBI opportunities won’t hurt.

Jonathan Schoop vs. Kyle Gibson (RHP) – Schoop is priced toward the lower end of second basemen where upside starts to disappear. Schoop is all upside. I expect some runs to be scored in Baltimore tonight and Schoop has maybe the best power of any second baseman in MLB.

Third Base:

Miguel Sano vs. Yovanni Gallardo (RHP) – Can I use Sano at third base in my roto leagues? Please… No platoon advantage, but Gallardo is far from overpowering these days. Sano is the real deal.

Maikel Franco vs. Brandon Finnegan (LHP) – I love this matchup for Franco and you save $300 off the price of Sano. I may be bouncing between the two all day.

Shortstop:

Carlos Correa vs. Michael Pineda (RHP) – The price is steep, but with Troy Tulowitzki playing an afternoon game, I’m paying it. Right now upside at shortstop is hard to come by. Once Jung-Ho Kanh returns I suspect I’ll be using him plenty, but for now, I’m spending the cash.

Marcus Semien vs. Carlos Rodon (LHP) – Semien is hitting .500 against left-handed pitching this year… Ok, it’s just four at-bats, but I bet you didn’t realize he hit .329 vs. southpaws last year, did you? Semien is an All-Star caliber shortstop when he faces a lefty. His .230 average against right-handers in 2015 tells you the rest of the story.

Outfielders:

Bryce Harper vs. Bud Norris (RHP) – I’m not typically a fan of spending this much on one player, but DraftKings pricing seems pretty loose right now. I don’t need to tell you what Harper can do. If you can afford him, you use him.

Michael Taylor vs. Bud Norris (RHP) – No platoon advantage, but the price is right and he is coming off a monster spring. Ben Revere is day-to-day and I expect Taylor to get the start here.

Chris Davis vs. Kyle Gibson (RHP) – I’m looking for Davis to go deep for the first time in 2016 tonight and it could come with a few Orioles on base. He’s expensive, but again, the DraftKings pricing scheme leaves you plenty of room to purchase talent.

Khris Davis vs. Carlos Rodon (LHP) – His 2015 splits don’t show it, but Kemp is a .327 career hitter against LHP. He’s also turned on the power, with five homers in 25 games in June. I’d like the salary a little lower, but I’m not a fan of the matchups for the upper tier of outfielders, so Kemp represents a nice value.

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Doug "RotoDaddy" Anderson

Doug Anderson took on the moniker RotoDaddy with the birth of his son in 2003. He's a veteran of the industry and has been playing Fantasy Baseball for over 20 years. His work has been seen on RotoExperts.com, SI.com, Yahoo, USAToday.com and also in the pages of various Fantasy magazines. He's currently also in charge of aggregation efforts at The Fantasy Sports Network and represents them in the LABR Mixed Experts League.
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