As I get ready to handle my weekly assignment of writing the FanDuel Picks for Wednesday, 4/29, I decided to take a page out of RotoDaddy’s book, and follow his layout instead of my normal one.
Usually, I’ll work up a whole pitching chart, rank all the starters, add in a bunch of stats, and then go down to hitting and share a couple hitters from each position that look good on that particular day for FanDuel.
Why am I changing? … Well, that chart sucked putting together every time. Plus, Doug’s picks pages are among the most popular on our site!
It’s like every cartoon eventually said, back in the early ‘80s, “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em!”
Games start at 12:35pm today (MIL at CIN), and there are two 1pm games, a 2pm game, a 3:40pm game, and two 6pm games, before we get to the eight nighttime games. By the time I get this article gets written and posted, it’s useless for the early game players, so we’ll be focusing on the nighttime games.
Wednesday’s Weather Notes
It should be a pretty nice evening across the country – there are no games with a 50-percent chance of precipitation (or higher).
- Washington at Atlanta: 15% chance of precipitation
- Y. Mets at Miami: 43% (retractable roof)
- Pittsburgh at Chicago Cubs: 20%
- Philadelphia at St. Louis: 20%
You should always check the weather, but it looks like the nighttime games will go off without issue.
Also, Wednesday will be the first time we’ll be able to play some Orioles or White Sox players, as the past couple games have been cancelled due to local protests. Today’s game is closed to the public, which is the first time in MLB history this has ever happened. (This is an early game, however, so we won’t really discuss these players.)
It’s always smart to check day-to-day injuries before you fill out a lineup, and we like the chart at MLB.com the most. They break it down by teams, and share what side of the body the injury is, as well as some notes on the injury and their progress in coming back from it. Here are five players shown as day-to-day:
- Yunel Escobar, SS, Washington: Left hand
- Gregory Polanco, OF, Pittsburgh: Left groin
- Desmond Jennings, OF, Tampa Bay: Left knee soreness
- Devin Mesoraco, C, Cincinnati: Left hip impingement
- Rajai Davis, OF, Detroit: Tight right groin
I’m a bigger fan of using VegasInsider.com over OddsShark, as we check to see which games have the heavy favorites, and which games have the highest expect run totals (over/under lines).
Of the seven nighttime games, the Colorado at Arizona game has a 9.0 O/U line, which is the highest of the night. (For daytime peeps, the Toronto-Boston game has a 9.5 O/U line.) The other games with lines all range between 7 and 7.5 O/U, so about average.
Batter vs. Pitcher: Doug and I are in the same boat on how this information has become noise in the industry – although, we were both slow to convert. He wrote a great piece on why batter vs. pitcher stats aren’t something you should pay much attention to. But if you’re still into reading about BvP stats, you can check DailyBaseballData.com for that fix.
Rather than target hitters against certain pitchers, look at hitters vs. right- or left-handed pitchers. Doug put together two awesome charts for your perusal:
FanDuel Strategy for the Day
FanDuel catches a lot of flak for not having late-game changeouts available, in case a player is hurt or a game gets postponed or canceled. But the smart DFS players are happy about this because they post ownership percentages on late games if you are playing in an early game.
So fill out a lineup in a $1 tournament this afternoon, and then you’ll see the ownership percentages for all of the players chosen by your opponents, including in any of the nighttime games. Then, you can get a great idea of what the sharks and regular players think about the nighttime contests.
If you’re playing in some 50/50 cash games, then load up on the high-percentage owned players! If you’re in a big nighttime tournament, consider fewer of the high-percentage owned players, for a bigger variance against your competition.
Top Stacking Options for the Day
- Colorado Rockies vs. RHP Josh Collmenter: As we mentioned, the Rockies-Diamondbacks games is expected to be a high-scoring game, and since it’s on the road, some might avoid the Rockies. That would be foolish.
- A. Dodgers vs. RHP Ryan Vogelsong: The right-hander has had his troubles this season, with a 7.71 ERA in four appearances this season. He pitched well against the Dodgers last week in place of Matt Cain, but that just makes him an even better pitcher to target with a stack in tournament play.
FanDuel Picks for Wednesday, April 29
Top Starting Pitchers for Wednesday, April 29
The following rankings take into account skill of pitcher, quality of opposing offense, quality of opposing pitcher, ballpark factors, and of course price at FanDuel.It’s a weird day with some solid, top-notch starters – and then the rest of the field. You HAVE to get a win from your pitcher to compete on FanDuel, so I’m spending money on the mound today.
Carlos Martinez is getting a lot of love for today’s game against a horrible Phillies offense, but this is still a 23-year-old inconsistent starter with the fifth-highest price ($8,500) for pitchers on the night on FanDuel.
Felix Hernandez RHP, Seattle at TEX ($11,100): Yes, he’s super expensive and he’s outside of spacious Safeco Field. But he’s facing a Rangers team that has a .195/.281/.288 slash line as a team against right-handed pitching – the worst numbers in the majors.
Zack Greinke RHP, L.A. Dodgers vs. SF ($10,000): I already mentioned how I think Vogelsong should be targeted against, and Greinke is 3-0 with a 1.35 ERA this season. Vegas also has LAD as the biggest favorite of the day (-180).
Kyle Hendricks RHP, Chicago Cubs vs. PIT ($6,200): The Pirates are hitting just .229 against right-handers this season, and .224 on the road. Hendricks is the second-cheapest pitcher on the docket, and this matchup seems like a decent one to gamble on for tournaments.
Top Hitters for Wednesday, April 29
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.
Yadier Molina, St. Louis ($2,400): Molina shook off a knee injury to knock in a couple runs Tuesday night, and now he goes up against Aaron Harang, whose numbers are better than they should be. Molina is batting .292 against righties, and this is in St. Louis.
Mike Zunino, Seattle ($2,200): Going super cheap at catcher today (check your lineups, though), as Zunino faces LHP Wandy Rodriguez, has the lowest price possible, and is hitting at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Don’t look at his recent hitting – that just helped his salary be low.
Matt Adams, St. Louis ($2,700): The big fella had three hits last night, but that didn’t bake into his current salary. He’s a good slugger against right-handers (.471 SLG) with the ability to reach the bleachers on every swing.
Adrian Gonzalez, L.A. Dodgers ($4,400): The price actually isn’t too bad, considering how well Gonzalez has been playing with the Dodgers this season. He faces Vogelsong, and all seven of his homers (and a MLB-high 17 RBI) are against right-handers this year (five of which came at Dodger Stadium).
Danny Espinosa, Washington ($2,300): The switch-hitter hit over .300 against lefties last season, and he’ll face Alex Wood tonight. Wood has been a little disappointing this season so far, with a 1.50 WHIP.
Daniel Murphy, N.Y. Mets ($3,100): He’s seeing the ball well lately, and his .205 batting average on the season has suppressed his salary a tiny bit. He has 12 RBI in 20 games against RHP this season, and while Mat Latos has corrected himself from his Opening Day disaster, he’s still not a big strikeout guy.
Matt Carpenter, St. Louis ($4,000): It’s tough to spend 4K on a guy not known for his slugging, but Carpenter does have three bombs vs. RHP this year. Plus, he has reached base safely in every game this season – and he has two or more hits in 14 of 19 games in 2015.
Yasmany Tomas, Arizona ($2,200): He got his first career RBI last night against Colorado – he’s on fire! But in reality, he’s so cheap, with a great matchup, the Cuban’s hard to ignore. He’s batting .429 (in just 14 at-bats) against RHP! Small sample size – whatever, small FanDuel price is more like it.
Wilmer Flores, N.Y. Mets ($2,400): With three homers and six RBI (23 total bases in 53 AB) against RHP, I like Flores as a super-cheap option here.
Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado ($4,600): One of the few true sluggers going tonight with a pretty good matchup and venue. He’s not hitting .455 against righties, like he is lefties, but his .270 batting average in 63 at-bats against RHP isn’t bad either.
Nelson Cruz, Seattle ($4,900): Got some money to spend? Here’s a good starting spot! Cruz hasn’t homered in five games – he’s due for like three homers tonight! He almost hit for the cycle Tuesday. He returns to Arlington, where he played several years, and hit 95 career home runs.
Joc Pederson, L.A. Dodgers ($3,300): The rookie has a 1.056 OPS vs. RHP this season, and he’s hitting in on one of my favorite stackable teams today.
Ender Inciarte, Arizona ($2,700): He’ll go up against a pitcher (Jordan Lyles) with a 5.56 ERA against lefties this season, and it’s a darn shame the Diamondbacks don’t have more left-handed hitters.
David Peralta, Arizona ($2,300): He had been struggling after a hot start to the season, but Peralta smacked his third home run of the year Tuesday night. He faces Lyles, whose letting lefties tee off on him at a .311 clip this year.
Hopefully, we hit more homers than GIDPs with our FanDuel picks for Wednesday, 4/29, and you come out a winner!
Nelson Cruz Photo Credit: Keith Allison
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