DraftKings & FanDuel MLB DFS Lineups & Picks for June 23, 2018

Written By Nate Lawson on June 23, 2018

MLB DFS DraftKings.com & FanDuel.com Lineups & Picks for June 23, 2018

There are four games on the main MLB DFS slate for Saturday, 6/23/18. Below is a list of our best MLB DFS picks for pitchers, hitters, and stacks to target in Cash and GPP lineups on DraftKings and FanDuel. The info below can also be used for creating 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 Mike Trout can go 0-for-4 on a given night, and Max Scherzer can get lit up by an unsuspecting 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.


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Best MLB DFS Pitchers for June 23, 2018

Lance McCullers vs. KC ($10.2k DraftKings, $9.2k FanDuel)

Short slate and weather concerns in two of the games make picking the right pitcher very important. For me, McCullers is arguably in the best spot, facing the Kansas City Royals at home where he is 3-1. He’s already faced the Royals this season, earning a no-decision across six innings of four-run ball (two earned). But his nine strikeouts in that one—against a Royals team that is one of the best in the league at not striking out—make me quite confident in deploying McCullers in cash games across sites. He has strikeout upside, and has managed a 2.37 ERA at home, allowing opposing bats to hit for just a .194 average. Oh, and the Royals have been swept in their last three series, furthering McCuller’s case in cash games. Don’t get me wrong, though—you can fire away in GPPs as well, but with the understanding that he’ll likely be the chalkiest pitcher on the slate.

Eduardo Rodriguez vs. SEA ($8.5K DraftKings, $8.7k FanDuel)

Eduardo Rodriguez could also be a chalk play, but I think he’s still worth a hard look on this short slate. In his last four home games, he’s 4-0, thanks to the five runs allowed over 23.1 innings during that span. He’s also struck out, on average, more than six batters per game over his last four home appearances. Tonight he’ll face the same Seattle team he faced less than a week ago, in a game in which Rodriguez (on the road) earned the victory and struck out nine across six innings of two-run baseball.

The Mariners entered their series with Boston last night after dropping their last four games, which is the longest losing streak this season for Seattle (also had a three-game losing streak back in April). With Rodriguez in prime form at home, and Seattle trending in the wrong direction, I’m inclined to roster Rodriguez in cash games, while his nine-K performance against Seattle last week gives me some hope for tournament upside.

Pay close attention to the weather (potential rainout according to RotoQL), but with the green light, Rodriguez is priced in buy range across the industry. He’s a great pivot off the ultra-expensive options.

Other pitchers to consider: Jacob DeGrom, Jaime Barria


Best MLB DFS Hitters for June 23, 2018

Albert Pujols vs. TOR ($3.6k DraftKings, $3.1k FanDuel)

I never thought I’d include Pujols in top picks ever again, so it’s kind of nice to write him down again, even as his career is in a downturn. Seeking his 3,000th hit heading into this series against the Blue Jays, the future Hall-of-Famer had hit safely in five straight and eight of his last 10. To bolster the argument further, he’s a lifetime 5-for-10 against RHP Marcus Stroman, who hasn’t pitched since May and is 0-5 on the season with an ERA of 7.71. And where Stroman has been weakest this year is against the four- and five-spots in the order (allowing an OPS of more than 1.000 to each spot). Pujols should hit cleanup, and his history against Stroman—along with the history of 3,000 hits—sets the stage nicely. He’s a solid option in cash games.

Rafael Devers vs. SEA ($4.2k DraftKings, $3.4k FanDuel)

In six innings a week ago against Boston, Mike Leake allowed five earned runs. Rafael Devers was a big part of that with a home run and three RBI. In five career at-bats against Leake, Devers is 3-for-5, which is a small sample size, sure. But the Red Sox prospect has launched three home runs over his past 10 games, all on the road. He also has three multi-hit games over that span. Leake is actually better against lefties than righties (even as an RHP), but the difference in OPS allowed is negligible. Leake is also returning back to Earth after dominant wins over the Tampa Bay Rays, a back-to-back set in which he allowed four earned runs over 15 innings. Boston is one of the most potent offenses in the Bigs right now, and Devers should reap the benefits of another efficient scoring day for the Sox. He’s GPP only for me at DraftKings due to cost, but at FanDuel you can roster in all formats.

Brian McCann vs. KC ($3.2k DraftKings, $2.2k FanDuel)

Be sure to confirm that McCann is in the starting lineup before rostering him, but there’s upside to be had if he does indeed play. Ian Kennedy of the Royals has actually been really strong against this Houston Astros roster, allowing a .2015/.248/.452 slash line to the reigning champions. However, McCann sticks out with five extra base hits (two doubles, three homers) in 24 at bats against Kennedy. That equates to a slugging percentage of .792. McCann has long been better against RHPs than LHPs, given his left-handedness. Everyone will expect Houston to win this one, and I do as well. And the fact that the wind is expected to blow out to center at roughly 13 miles per hour helps McCann’s case. Like Pujols, he’s at a stage in his career where production is limited, but no one will go here. Again, he has to start for you to play him, but McCann is a very intriguing contrarian/leverage play, though I’m partial to deploying him on FanDuel in GPPs. That said, playing him there is ultra-contrarian given the lineup format, while it increases reward but also very much increases risk.

Brandon Nimmo vs. LAD ($4.7k DraftKings, $3.6k FanDuel)

Speaking of contrarian plays, Mets lefties are in play today, even with Clayton Kershaw on the mound. The Dodgers ace has been remarkably bad against left-handed bats this season, allowing them to slash for a line of .302/.318/.535. He’s also allowed three home runs in 43 at bats. And he’s also struggled against hitters in the one spot more than any other spot in the lineup, allowing a .360 BA. That brings us to Brandon Nimmo. The Mets lefty has an OPS against LHPs that is .305 points lower, but he’s still managed a .764 against pitchers of that handedness. He’s also hitting home runs at a slightly higher rate against LHPs compared to RHPs.

Many will fade Nimmo given the matchup, but the youngster is on a six-game hitting streak, and he’s hit safely in 12 of his last 14 games. Meanwhile, Kershaw is 1-4, and the Dodgers originally intended him to get a freshener at the AAA level, but ultimately opted to pull forward his return from the DL. He very likely isn’t at 100%, and the Dodgers decision is questionable. I’ll take the hot bat over the returning ace today, and no one else will. Nimmo is a safer option than McCann, and I actually think you can explore him as an option in cash over at FanDuel where the matchup at least appears to be priced in. The heavy tag over at DraftKings will depress his ownership on that site, making him a prime GPP leverage play.

Randal Grichuk @ LAA ($3.7k DraftKings, $3.1k FanDuel)

Since returning to action at the start of June, Grichuk has been an absolute monster, slashing .316/.371/.719. For the sake of comparison, in April (before missing all of May), he slashed .089/.197/.179. That’s a remarkable shift in performance, and it helps that he has hit six home runs over his last 52 at bats, including one in the opening game of this series against the Angels. Grichuk is also hitting for an OPS of .858 against right-handers this season, compared to a .505 OPS against lefties. Fortunately, his opponent tonight, Jamie Barria, is right-handed. He’s also allowing an .811 OPS to right-handed bats compared to a .643 OPS against lefties. Grichuk is playing extremely well right now, and his recent power streak doesn’t need to stop now. Jump on this train while it’s still rolling. Give Grichuk a strong look in GPPs across the industry.

Other hitters to consider: Andrew Benintendi, Nelson Cruz, Yuri Gurriel, Russell Martin, Hunter Dozier, Martin Maldonado, Justin Upton, Kyle Seager, Alex Bregman, Marwin Gonzalez, Joc Pederson


MLB DFS Stacks to Consider for June 23, 2018

Astros vs. Ian Kennedy (Royals)
Angels vs. Marcus Stroman (Blue Jays
Red Sox vs. Mike Leake (Mariners)


Nate Lawson Avatar
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Nate Lawson

Nate began playing DFS back in 2013, focusing on low stakes MLB contests over at DraftKings. Now, the vast majority of his DFS time is spent identifying optimal picks and player exposure for NBA and NFL GPPs, though MMA and eSports are his DFS guilty pleasures. With a focus on constant iteration, Nate spends a lot of his non-DFS time reading books and essays by leaders in finance and entrepreneurship for application to his DFS strategies...with a bit of cryptocurrency trading on the side.

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