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Arrieta

We have a 10-game MLB DFS slate on Saturday, 5/4/19 beginning at 7:05 p.m. EDT. Below is a list of our best pitchers, hitters, and stacks to target (Three Up) and fade (Three Down) in MLB DFS contests. Note that some of these plays are recommended for Cash and some are best reserved for GPP lineups on DraftKings and FanDuel.

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 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!

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Three Up for May 4, 2019

Best Pitcher

Jake Arrieta vs. WAS ($8.6k DraftKings, $9.2k FanDuel)

Arrieta has had a couple of hiccups thus far this season but has generally been in solid form. He owns a 3.46 ERA and has improved in a couple of important categories thus far. Arrieta has boosted his strand rate from last year’s 68.1 percent to 77.6 percent while chopping his HR/9 from 14.3 percent to 11.1 percent.

He’s also facing a Nationals team that’s had trouble generating much offense lately. Washington came into Friday night’s series opener with a .206 average and 27.1 percent strikeout rate over the last week of play. They then proceeded to score just two runs versus Jerad Eickhoff and four relievers. Arrieta stumbled against the Marlins his last time out, but he opened the season with five consecutive quality starts.

Given his typical consistency and ability to keep the ball in the park, I see Arrieta as a cash or GPP option against a struggling offense.

Other pitchers to consider: Rich Hill (at SDP), Wade Miley (at LAA), Chris Bassitt (at PIT), Manny Banuelos (vs. BOS)

Best Hitter

Avisail Garcia at BAL ($4.2k DraftKings, $3.3k FanDuel)

The Orioles’ Dylan Bundy has considerable trouble keeping the ball in the park. And Garcia is adept at leaving the yard. The slugger has figured out Bundy more often than not, going 5-for-9 with a home run against the right-hander in his career. Seven of the nine home runs Bundy has yielded this season have also come off righty bats. He’s surrendering a .424 wOBA to that handedness overall, as well as a 29.6 percent line-drive rate and 40.7 percent hard-contact rate to righty bats at home.

In fact, Bundy’s worst problems have come in Camden Yards. He’s allowing a .323 average, massive .694 slugging percentage, and .434 wOBA overall across 14.2 home frames. Garcia counters with a .297 average, nine extra-base hits (five doubles, four home runs) and a .359 wOBA against right-handed pitching. What’s more, the latter figure bumps up to .451 on the road, where he also boasts a 33.3 percent line-drive rate and 44.4 percent hard-contact rate versus that handedness.

Finally, factor in Baltimore’s ever-struggling bullpen when considering Garcia. Orioles relievers came into Friday night’s action with an MLB-high 6.27 ERA and .381 wOBA.

Other hitters to consider: Enrique Hernandez (at SDP), Ketel Marte (at COL), Yuli Gurriel (at LAA), Alex Bregman (at LAA), George Springer (at LAA), Buster Posey (at CIN), Jean Segura (vs. WAS), Matt Adams (at PHI), Kevin Kiermaier (at BAL), Tommy Pham (at BAL), Yandy Diaz (at BAL), Brandon Lowe (at BAL)

Best Stack

White Sox vs. BOS (LHP Eduardo Rodriguez) 

The White Sox have not been kind to left-handers, particularly at home. Meanwhile, Rodriguez has been at his worst on the road. Chicago owns a .285/.340/.435 line versus lefties at U.S. Cellular Field, along with a .335 wOBA. Then, Rodriguez has allowed a 9.45 ERA, 2.25 WHIP and 2.0 HR/9 across 13.1 road frames this season. He’s seen unwanted boosts in BB/9 (3.12 to 3.52) and HR/9 (1.11 to 1.17) while also undergoing a precipitous drop in strand rate (59.0 percent from 76.9 percent) this season.

The White Sox have five players in their probable Saturday lineup with wOBAs of .319 or higher against lefties. Four of them have sub-20 percent strikeout rates versus southpaws as well. Tim Anderson, Yolmer Sanchez, Leury Garcia, Jose Abreu, Jose Rondon, and James McCann are especially interesting versus Rodriguez in GPPs, with McCann having slugged two homers against Rodriguez in 10 career plate appearances.

Other stacks to consider: Rays (at BAL), Diamondbacks (at COL), Rangers (vs. TOR), Brewers (vs. NYM)

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Three Down for May 4, 2019

Pitcher To Fade

Zack Wheeler at MIL ($8.9k DraftKings, $8.3k FanDuel)   

Wheeler has been nothing if not inconsistent to open the season. The right-hander has a 2-2 record, 5.05 ERA, and 1.40 WHIP while also experiencing more control problems than in past seasons. Through 35.2 innings across six starts, Wheeler owns a career-high 4.3 BB/9 and a career-low 63.8 percent strand rate. Saturday, he draws a Brewers team that boasts a .354 wOBA, .234 ISO, and NL-high 45.4 percent hard-contact rate versus right-handers in hitter-friendly Miller Park.

Milwaukee’s home stadium also checks in with the fifth-highest run factor (1.208) and third-highest home-run factor (1.603). The Brewers also boast multiple hitters that have enjoyed success against Wheeler. Lorenzo Cain (.600 average), Jesus Aguilar (.667 average), Mike Moustakas (.500 average) and Christian Yelich (.278 average) have all gotten the best of Wheeler to varying degrees in their careers.

Hitter To Fade

Andrew McCutchen vs. WAS ($4.3k DraftKings, $3.9k FanDuel)

McCutchen doesn’t typically enjoy his encounters with Nationals starter Patrick Corbin. The southpaw has stymied him to the tune of a .160/.267/.200 line over 30 plate appearances. That sample includes just one extra-base hit (a double) and seven strikeouts. Corbin has been tough on right-handers overall. He’s allowed them a .219 average and .298 wOBA, along with a minuscule 11.4 percent line-drive rate.

It’s also worth noting Corbin has been particularly effective against right-handed hitters on the road over a modest sample this season. He’s held righty bats to a .167 average, .261 wOBA and 10.0 percent line-drive rate outside of Nationals Park while generating an impressive 31.3 percent strikeout rate over a 32-batter sample.

Stack To Fade

Padres vs. LAD (LHP Rich Hill)

Hill was relatively solid in his first taste of 2019 action last Sunday against the Pirates. He allowed five runs, but only one was earned. He also struck out six and got through six frames on an efficient 85 pitches. Having broken the ice on the season, he now draws a favorable matchup. Hill has held current Padres hitters to a collective .165/.232/.307 line over 127 total at-bats. He’s mastered some of San Diego’s most potent bats. Eric Hosmer (.067 average), Manuel Margot (.222 average) and Wil Myers (.130 average) have particularly had trouble against him.

San Diego owns a .296 wOBA and 26.8 percent strikeout rate against left-handed pitching on the season. They’ve been slightly worse in their hitter-friendly home park versus that handedness, posting a 27.2 percent strikeout rate and .210 average against southpaws at Petco Park. Petco also continues to suppress offense for the most part, as it checked into Friday night’s action with the fifth-lowest run factor (0.758) and a bottom-half home-run factor (0.850).

Finally, Hill’s track record against the Padres over the last three seasons is eye-opening. He owns a 6-1 record, 1.41 ERA, and .160 BAA over eight starts during that stretch versus San Diego.

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