DraftKings & FanDuel MLB DFS Lineups & Picks for April 20, 2018

Written By Nate Weitzer on April 20, 2018

MLB DFS DraftKings.com & FanDuel.com Lineups & Picks for April 20, 2018

Baseball is back with a great slate of MLB DFS games scheduled for Friday, 4/20/18. The main slate on DraftKings includes 15 games starting at 7:05 p.m. EST, and FanDuel’s main slate also includes 15 games starting at 7:05 p.m. EST.

For today, we’re listing our top MLB DFS pitchers, hitters, and stacks to target in Cash and GPP lineups on DraftKings and FanDuel. The info below can also be used for crafting your daily fantasy baseball strategy at FantasyDraft.

Please note the advice below is relevant for daily fantasy purposes. A player or team might be better or worse from a fantasy perspective than in real life due to matchup, price, and lots of other factors. This is important to consider when constructing a roster. Remember that more than in other sports, variance is a huge part of baseball. Even Jose Altuve can go 0-for-4 on a given night, and Max Scherzer can get lit up by a weak team.

Weather can also play a huge role in MLB DFS on a nightly basis, and lineups are constantly shifting. So always, always check the starting lineups and weather reports when playing for an MLB slate. If a game gets rained out, your player gets zero points!


Full Count: $55 entry, $250k guaranteed (DraftKings)  – $50,000 to 1st!
Knuckleball: $5 entry, $225k guaranteed (DraftKings) – $25,000 to 1st!
Grand Slam: $33 entry, $125k guaranteed (FanDuel) – $25,000 to 1st!
JUMBO Rally: $9.99 entry, $100k guaranteed (FanDuel)
Click here for FantasyDraft MLB DFS Contests – $4 free entry!

Best MLB DFS Pitchers for April 20, 2018

Clayton Kershaw vs. WAS ($12.2k DraftKings, $11.5k FanDuel)

The two annual front runners for N.L. CY Young honors clash tonight at Dodger Stadium and it’s hard to go wrong with either. Yet Washington ace Max Scherzer ($12.5k, $11.4k), while rare, if he’s ever tagged, is usually vulnerable to power-hitting lefties and the Dodgers have several. The matchup seems a bit better for Clayton Kershaw with one of the Nats better platooning options questionable in Anthony Rendon (toe) and other RHB such as Michael A. Taylor and Ryan Zimmerman (despite one big game Wednesday) struggling mightily. Bryce Harper has been carrying the Nats offense, but is 1-for-18 with 12 Ks in his career against Kershaw. He’s been a hard luck loser in two starts but is sporting a fantastic 2.45 SIERA with his highest K/9 ratio (10.73) since 2015 and has been the gold standard of consistency over the past decade.

Justin Verlander vs. CWS ($12.0k DraftKings, $11.1k FanDuel)

Seemingly improving with age like a fine wine, Justin Verlander has demonstrated impeccable control with a 6.80 K/BB ratio and a career-best 13.4% swinging strike rate through four starts this season. He draws his best matchup yet against a White Sox team that’s posting the third-highest K-Rate (26.2%) in the Majors and he’ll have the backing of the Astros elite offense with shaky RHP James Shields slated to go for the Northsiders. Verlander has posted a 12.2 K/9 ratio over his last six appearances against the White Sox and has plenty of appeal in GPP formats as a consolation prize priced just below Scherzer.

Trevor Bauer vs. BAL ($9.4k DraftKings, $9.0k FanDuel)

Challenging hitters the way Trevor Bauer has over the past couple of seasons will lead to mixed results, but also seriously increases his upside in a home start against an Orioles team that leads the Majors with a 28.4% K-Rate this year. Bauer is giving up a 92.1% Z-Contact Rate but also posting the highest swinging strike rate (10.1%) and lowest FIP (3.01) of his career through three starts in 2018. He’s gone over 100 pitches and struck out 7 in each outing and went 6.1 strong IP with 7 Ks when he faced Baltimore last September. The frigid weather in Cleveland is much more likely to benefit pitchers on both sides and Bauer certainly felt more comfortable with a 4.64 K/BB ratio and 3.13 xFIP at home last year. 

Jakob Junis vs. DET ($8.3k DraftKings, $8.5k FanDuel)

A below-average Tigers offense could be weakened further with players potentially resting on the second leg of a doubleheader tonight. Jakob Junis is capable of navigating Detroit’s lineup regardless, as he’s been quite stingy with a 0.80 WHIP and 10.2% swinging strike rate through three starts to open the season. Junis flirted with a no-hitter against Seattle’s elite offense and already earned a win in Detroit by spinning 7 innings of shutout ball with 6 Ks. He found his rhythm with a 3.41 FIP and 5.78 K/BB ratio during the second half of his rookie campaign and has maintained that recipe for success with a meager 14% line drive rate this year.

Lance Lynn @ TB ($6.4k DraftKings, $7.1k FanDuel)

After struggling badly with his control in his season debut, Lance Lynn focused in to hold the mighty Astros offense to just 3 hits and 0 ER with 9 Ks on April 9. Due to the horrible weather in the midwest, he’s had 10 full days of rest since that start and should be ready for a much easier matchup against the weak Rays lineup. Tampa is rocking the lowest ISO mark (.105) with the third-lowest wOBA (.294) amongst A.L. teams this season. Current Rays are just 13-for-61 (.213) with 20 Ks (32.7% K-Rate) in their careers against Lynn and that offense is even weaker with both Kevin Kiermaier (thumb) and Matt Duffy (hamstring) on the DL. So Lynn is certainly worth a look tonight as a value with upside.

Other pitchers to consider: Max Scherzer, Noah Syndergaard, Ivan Nova, Dylan Bundy, Michael Wacha, Marco Estrada


Best MLB DFS Hitters for April 20, 2018

Mookie Betts @ OAK ($5.7k DraftKings, $5.0k FanDuel)

The hottest hitter on the hottest team in baseball faces one of the most vulnerable pitchers in the league in a matchup that smacks you right in the face it’s so obvious to target. Of course, this is baseball, so Mookie Betts could fail to produce FPs for the first time in 15 appearances, but that is highly unlikely and his upside is clearly immense. Betts leads the Majors with a .389 average and .533 wOBA this season and he’s hitting .413 with a ridiculous 1.270 OPS in RvR matchups. Athletics RHP Kendall Graveman has been more vulnerable against lefties while posting the highest ERA (9.87) of any pitcher with 15-plus IP, he allowed RHB to post a .365 wOBA last year and is an easy target for a slugger like Betts.

Asdrubal Cabrera vs. ATL ($4.0k DraftKings, $3.9k FanDuel)

An ageless wonder with plenty of pop from both sides of the plate, Asdrubal Cabrera continues to show even more consistency against lefties. He’s hitting .389 this season after hitting .392 with a .946 OPS off LHP last year, and draws a plus matchup against unproven southpaw Sean Newcomb. After a strong first month in the Majors, Newcomb was knocked to the tune of a 4.97 ERA and 1.69 WHIP over the next three months. His strikeout numbers rose, but so too did his hard contact rate and he’s allowing an 18.2% HR/FB ratio through two starts despite his 12.49 K/9 ratio this season. Cabrera is rocking a 15.3% K-Rate over the past two seasons with great plate discipline and happens to be 5-for-9 off Newcomb during that span.

Joey Gallo vs. SEA ($4.0k DraftKings, $3.5k FanDuel)

The Rangers are an intriguing stack tonight against seemingly washed-up RHP Felix Hernandez. But like the rest of his squad in this spot, Joey Gallo is best reserved for GPP formats. The slugging lefty is hitting just .208 over the past two seasons, but has a .323 ISO mark during that span and a 28.3% HR/FB ratio throughout his career. Hernandez is giving up a 22.2% HR/FB ratio over the past two seasons and allowed LHB to hit .303 with a .363 wOBA last year. Essentially, if Gallo makes solid contact and keeps it fair, he’ll pay off in GPP formats with a homer tonight. If you want a safer option to use against Felix, who has consistently struggled at Rangers Ballpark, consider outfielders Nomar Mazara ($3.4k, $2.8k) and Shin-Soo Choo ($3.5k, $3.2k).

Whit Merrifield vs. DET ($4.0k DraftKings, $3.4k FanDuel)

He’s almost exclusively done his damage against LHP this year with a .391 average and .450 wOBA against the platoon. So, Whit Merrifield will almost certainly be in the Royals lineup for the second leg of today’s doubleheader with the Tigers sending vulnerable southpaw Daniel Norris to the mound. Norris is coughing up a 35.3% line drive rate with a 7.11 ERA through two starts and can be targeted even though his advanced metrics (2.80 SIERA, 1.69 FIP) are much better. The southpaw has posted a 1.46 WHIP with a 36.5% hard contact rate in his career against the platoon while Merrifield is a career .312 hitter with a 40.3% hard contact rate against lefties.

Teoscar Hernandez @ NYY ($3.2k DraftKings, $3.3k FanDuel)

After making a splash as late-season call-up in 2017, Teoscar Hernandez is close to cementing his status as an integral player for the Blue Jays. The 25-year-old outfielder started 8-for-20 with 4 XBH, a HR and a SB over his first four appearances this year and clearly has the type of category juice you search for in DFS contests. The Blue Jays should be able to produce runs at hitter-friendly Yankee Stadium against RHP Sonny Gray, who has struggled with his control a bit lately and coughed up a 14.7% HR/FB ratio at home last season.

Other hitters to consider: Mike Trout, Anthony Rizzo, Carlos Correa, Christian Yelich, Dee Gordon, Rafael Devers, Jed Lowrie, Paul DeJong, Stephen Piscotty, Josh Reddick, Yadier Molina, Adam Frazier


MLB DFS Stacks to Consider for April 20, 2018

Red Sox vs. Kendall Graveman (Athletics)
Rangers vs. Felix Hernandez (Mariners) – GPP only 
Astros vs. James Shields (White Sox) 
Cardinals vs. Brandon Finnegan (Reds)
Angels vs. Jeff Samardzija (Giants) – or LHP Derek Holland depending on who starts


Nate Weitzer Avatar
Written by
Nate Weitzer

Nate Weitzer is a successful DFS player at DraftKings and FanDuel with numerous tournament wins in NBA and NFL contests. He's been writing about DFS for several years, specializing in NBA picks and advice while continuing to build his bankroll across the daily fantasy industry. When he's not playing DFS, Weitzer is often covering high school sports in the greater Boston area for outlets such as The Boston Globe, or playing basketball himself. Follow Nate on Twitter @Nweitzer7.

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