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starling marte

We have a nine-game MLB DFS slate on DraftKings and a seven-game MLB DFS slate on FanDuel on Sunday, 6/2/19 beginning at 1:05 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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Extra Inning: $10 entry, $150k guaranteed (DraftKings) – $25k to 1st!
Pitcher’s Mound: $60.60 entry, $300k guaranteed (DraftKings)- $100K to 1st!
Sun. Squeeze: $5.55 entry, $115k guaranteed (FanDuel) – $20K to 1st!
Sun. Grand Slam: $66 entry, $100K guaranteed (FanDuel)- $20K to 1st!

Three Up for June 2, 2019

Best Pitcher

Lucas Giolito vs. CLE ($11.1k DraftKings, $10.6k FanDuel)

Giolito is making a strong case for one of the most improved young pitchers in all of the Majors. The right-hander is picking up steam as the season unfolds, having generated quality starts in four of his last five trips to the mound. Sunday, he draws a matchup that could well facilitate a similar caliber of performance. The Indians have scored the third-fewest runs in the AL (234) and came into Saturday’s action with a .297 wOBA, -14.4 wRAA and 24.0 percent strikeout rate versus righties on the road this season.

Giolito has also stymied current Cleveland hitters for a collective .170/.278/.298 line over 47 career at-bats. He’s allowed just one home run in that sample as well. Additionally, the right-hander is holding both handedness of hitter to sub-.250 wOBAs for the season and has double-digit K/9 figures against both sides of the plate at his home park of Guaranteed Rate Field. Finally, consider Giolito has more or less been bulletproof in terms of his pitch arsenal this season. He’s allowing no higher than a .287 wOBA on his top three pitches (four-seam fastball, changeup, slider) and boasts respective strikeout rates of 23.8 percent, 31.1 percent and 50.0 percent with those offerings.

Given the matchup and his track record, I consider Giolito a strong cash or GPP candidate.

Other pitchers to consider: Max Scherzer (at CIN), Sonny Gray (vs. WAS), Jeff Samardzija (at BAL), Zach Plesac (at CWS)

Best Hitter

Starling Marte vs. MIL  ($4.5k DraftKings, $3.6k FanDuel)

Marte is having another solid season overall and is particularly enjoying success in same-handed matchups. The right-handed bat boasts a .288 average, .352 wOBA and .196 ISO against righty arms. Then, he owns a career .462/.500/.615 line versus Brewers starter Zach Davies in 14 career encounters and has never struck out against the right-hander.

Davies has been a bit fortunate against right-handed hitters on the road as well and could be due for a bit of regression. The .293 wOBA he’s yielding to that handedness on the road is belied to an extent by the .270 BAA, 26.4 percent line-drive rate and 39.6 percent hard-contact rate he’s also surrendering to righty bats when traveling. Marte could also remain in a good matchup when Davies exits the game. Milwaukee relievers allowed a 4.96 ERA and .333 wOBA on the road in May, and they also tied with the Braves bullpen for fourth-most home runs allowed to right-handed hitters during that span (six).

With likely low ownership due to Davies’ strong numbers this season, I consider Marte more of a GPP play Sunday.

Other hitters to consider: Yasiel Puig (vs. WAS), Trea Turner (at CIN), Adam Frazier, Gregory Polanco (vs. MIL), Yasmani Grandal, Christian Yelich (at PIT), Addison Russell (at STL), Chris Iannetta, Nolan Arenado, Trevor Story, Ian Desmond (vs. TOR), Mike Yastrzemzki, Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford, Evan Longoria, Brandon Belt (all at BAL), Whit Merrifield, Adalberto Mondesi, Alex Gordon, Jorge Soler (all at TEX), Freddy Galvis, Vladimir Guerrero, Jr., Justin Smoak, Randal Grichuk, Cavan Biggio (all at COL)

Best Stack

Blue Jays at COL (RHP Antonio Senzatela) 

*Note: The Blue Jays-Rockies tilt isn’t on the FanDuel main slate, but a couple of other stacks that are part of it are listed below.

Any game unfolding in Coors Field, especially in daylight hours as the weather begins to warm, is always in contention to feature the top stack of the slate. That certainly holds true Sunday, when Toronto draws a matchup against a pitcher in Antonio Senzatela that’s struggled to master his hitter-friendly home park this season. The right-hander has been bounced around at Coors Field to the tune of a 6.17 ERA, .304 BAA, .351 wOBA and 1.46 WHIP. While Toronto doesn’t exactly have appealing season numbers versus righties on the road, Senzatela’s weaknesses against either side of the plate make him an appealing target.

The Rockies starter has been especially hit hard by lefty bats at Coors. He’s allowing a .333 average, .379 wOBA and elevated 29.4 percent line-drive rate to that handedness there. Potential Toronto bats that could take advantage are the switch-hitting Justin Smoak and Freddy Galvis, as well as Cavan Biggio. Then, Senzatela also allows a .283 BAA, .330 wOBA and 1.84 HR/9 against right-handed hitters in his home park. Randal Grichuk (who also has a .400 average, including one homer, against Senzatela in his career), Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. and cheaper options like Danny Jansen and Lourdes Gurriel can also be considered.

When Senzatela exits, Jays bats of either handedness will be in fine shape as well. Colorado relievers allowed a 6.02 ERA, 25 extra-base hits (13 doubles, three triples, nine home runs) and a .343 wOBA at Coors during May.

Other stacks to consider: Rockies (vs. TOR), Royals (at TEX), Giants (at BAL), Pirates (vs. MIL)


Three Down for June 2, 2019

Pitcher To Fade

Jake Odorizzi at TAM ($10.3k DraftKings, $8.8k FanDuel)   

One might figure on the “revenge narrative” playing a part in Odorizzi’s return to Tropicana Field on Sunday, but I see it as a potential — and expensive — trap. The right-hander is undeniably pitching the best baseball of his career at the moment. However, the Rays should certainly have their former teammate scouted thoroughly. Additionally, Tampa has frequently punished righties at the Trop. The Rays came into Saturday’s action with a .334 wOBA, 23.9 percent line-drive rate and 43.5 percent hard-contact rate against right-handed pitching at home for the season.

Narrowing the focus to May, the Rays have been even better. They boasted a .297 average, .360 wOBA, 25.9 percent LD rate and 44.2 percent HC rate against righties there during the month. Then, Odorizzi has been more hittable on the road. He’s allowing a 3.68 ERA across 22 road frames (compared to 1.24 at home). He also sees an appreciable bump in walk rate (5.32 BB/9 compared to 1.73 at home) and a notable reduction in both strikeout rate (21.5 percent, compared to 30.2 percent) and strand rate (69.9 percent, compared to 96.8 percent at home). Furthermore, Odorizzi’s 5.24 xFIP on the road hints at possible regression, as does the 25.0 percent line-drive rate and 42.9 percent hard-contact rate he’s yielding in away starts.

Given that he carries a heavy price tag and is likely to also come at fairly high ownership, I see Odorizzi as a fade.

Hitter To Fade

Dexter Fowler vs. CHC ($3.4k DraftKings, $2.5k FanDuel)

Fowler’s 2019 numbers are exponentially better than last year’s career-worst figures. However, he draws a matchup Sunday that may have him looking about as bad as he often did at the plate in 2018. The veteran outfielder runs into an old nemesis who’s frequently gotten the best of him in Cubs starter Cole Hamels. Fowler owns a .167/.250/.167 line versus the veteran southpaw over 29 career plate appearances. All four hits he’s managed in that sample have been mere singles.

Hamels has been more hittable on the road. However, Fowler has struggled to hit lefties consistently, including at home. The switch-hitting vet owns a .222 average versus southpaws overall, including .232 at home. Additionally, his heavy groundball tendencies against left-handed pitching (63.6 percent) could certainly manifest against Hamels, considering the latter elicits a 56.6 percent figure in that category from righty bats on the road.

It’s also worth noting that Hamels could have a highly effective “out” pitch versus Fowler. The veteran lefty is allowing a minuscule .178 wOBA and generating a 37.0 percent strikeout rate when using the changeup, his second-most frequently thrown pitch. In turn, Fowler sports a .154 average and .187 wOBA when facing the pitch this season.

Stack To Fade

Nationals vs. CIN (RHP Sonny Gray)   

The Reds’ Sonny Gray has begun to find a groove over his last few starts. The Nationals are the type of team that could well help him stay in it. Washington has struggled against right-handed pitching all season, especially on the road. The Nats came into Saturday’s action with a .228 average, .296 wOBA, -16.9 wRAA and 24.2 percent strikeout rate against righty arms on the road for the season. Honing in on their May numbers, they generated a Majors-low .268 wOBA, 61 wRC+ and -21.6 wRAA versus the platoon when traveling.

Gray’s numbers are actually better on the road, but he’s been showing improvement at home recently. The veteran right-hander posted a quality start versus the Pirates in his last home start. He also hasn’t been blown up this season, whether at Great American Ballpark or on the road. Gray has yet to give up more than four earned runs in any start, which only occurred on one occasion. He’s surrendered three earned runs or less in his nine other trips to the mound.

Finally, also consider the Nats offense has been consistently modest on the road for an extended period. Coming into Sunday, they’ve scored no more than five runs in 10 of their last 11 away games.

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