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mlb dfs picks

The MLB season is rolling, and there’s a great DFS slate on tap for Wednesday, 6/12/19. Below is a list of our best pitchers, hitters, and stacks to target (Three Up) and fade (Three Down) in MLB DFS contests during the afternoon.

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 planning for an MLB slate. If a game gets rained out, your player gets zero points!

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Three Up for June 12, 2019

Best Pitchers

Justin Verlander vs. MIL ($11.3k DraftKings, $11.1k FanDuel)

This is certainly a tough draw for Justin Verlander, but the perennial Cy Young contender should be up to the challenge. He’s well equipped to contain the Brewers lineup with a slider that rates a league-best 19.4 runs above average this year per Brooks Baseball. Lefties are hitting only .110 with a measly .183 wOBA and 16.5% LD Rate off Verlander this year. That’s vital for any pitcher attempting to contain Christian Yelich, Mike Moustakas, and Travis Shaw, among the other LHBs in Milwaukee’s lineup. Verlander is 3-1 with a 1.75 ERA and 8.00 K/BB ratio at home this year. He’ll have the benefit of facing some of the Brewers bats for the first time in this Interleague showdown.

Mike Soroka vs. PIT ($10.9k DraftKings, $10.6k FanDuel)

Mike Soroka is so steady and efficient he can be locked into Cash lineups regardless of the slate. Tonight’s matchup against the Pirates is decent since Pittsburgh is posting a collective .300 wOBA with a 24% K-Rate in road games this year. Soroka has been basically untouchable in RvR matchups with a .135 BAA and 0 HRs allowed over 44.1 innings of work. He’s allowed one bomb (9.1% HR/FB ratio) to lefties but is holding LHBs to a 29.2% hard contact rate. He controls his fastball (13.9 runs above average) and slider (5.3) with expertise. And Pittsburgh owns the fifth-worst rating (-13.2) when facing fastballs this year.

Other pitchers to consider: Jose Berrios, Zach Eflin, Brandon Woodruff, Merrill Kelly

Best Hitters

C.J. Cron vs. SEA ($4.5k DraftKings, $3.6k FanDuel)

Mariners RHP Cory Gearrin is expected to start tonight, then quickly give way to LHP Wade LeBlanc. C.J. Cron thrives against LHPs, especially lefties without a plus fastball. He’s hitting .429 (9-for-23) with a 239 wRC+ at home against lefties and has tons of appeal as the heart of a potential Twins stack tonight. LeBlanc is averaging just 85.8 MPH on a fastball this season with a -29.4 net rating throughout his career. Cron owns a 37.8 net rating against fastballs over his last four seasons. Plus, he’s been raking with a 26.2% LD Rate and 23.7% HR/FB ratio so far this year. He’s posting a 50% hard contact rate in June and will likely produce against whichever combination the Mariners go with out of the bullpen.

Kolten Wong at MIA ($3.9k DraftKings, $2.9k FanDuel)

Marlins prospect Jordan Yamamoto posted great numbers at the Single-A level this spring, then immediately started to regress when called up to the AA level. The savvy Cardinals could be all over the rookie tonight and  their lefties would likely lead the way. Yamamato coughed up 7 HRs over 12 starts in AA and could serve up a long ball to Wong, who owns a .357 wOBA and 15.2% HR/FB ratio on the road this season. Wong is heating up with a .294 mark (10-for-34) over his last nine appearances, and he’s stolen two bases during that span. Look for him to be very aggressive at the plate and on the base paths in a matchup against a rookie starter.

Other hitters to consider: Freddie Freeman, Eddie Rosario, Renato Nunez, Whit Merrifield, David Peralta, Vlad Guerrero Jr., Hanser Alberto, Matt Joyce, Wil Myers, Marwin Gonzalez, Stevie Wilkerson

Best Stack

Orioles vs. RHP Edwin Jackson (Blue Jays)

Few things in MLB DFS are as reliable as targeting a washed-up veteran RHP like Edwin Jackson. After giving up 6 runs (2 ER) over just 3.1 IP in his last outing, he’ll start at hitter-friendly Camden Yards, which has one of the highest HR Factors in the Majors for lefties. Jackson is yielding a 2.45 HR/9 ratio on the road and a 27.6% HR/FB ratio overall this season. He’s been more vulnerable in RvR matchups, which works out well for the O’s righty-heavy lineup.

Trey Mancini and Renato Nunez stand out as the top options in this stack, with Nunez possessing more upside against righties. Jonathan Villar could provide production from the middle of the lineup, and 3B Hanser Alberto has come on strong lately as a potential leadoff man. The O’s have several cheap bats worth throwing into the ring, including switch-hitter Stevie Wilkerson and catcher Pedro Severino. The Blue Jays bullpen owns a rough 4.59 ERA and is unlikely to stop the bleeding if asked to relieve Jackson early in this contest.

Other stacks to consider: Twins vs. Cory Gearrin (Mariners), Braves vs. Mitch Keller (Pirates), Royals vs. Daniel Norris (Tigers)


Three Down for June 12, 2019

Pitcher To Fade

Joey Lucchesi at SF ($9.6k DraftKings, $7.9k FanDuel)

While the Giants has been among the worst in the league and AT&T Park remains one of the most pitcher-friendly ballparks, Joey Lucchesi is still tough to trust on the road. He’s sporting a 6.75 ERA and .272 BAA on the road this year after yielding a 43.5% hard contact rate on the road as a rookie. Lucchesi struggled badly in his season debut at San Francisco and coughed up 4 ER in his last start (home vs. Washington). His Z-Contact Rate (88%) is up, and he’s been fortunate to post a .265 BABIP so far this year. Despite their low collective average (.223) the Giants are posting the third-highest LD Rate (23.4%) in the Majors against lefties. Perhaps those numbers start to regress tonight, resulting in a string of singles for the host Giants.

Hitter To Fade

Christian Yelich at HOU ($5.7k DraftKings, $4.7k FanDuel)

Since we’re willing to pay up for Justin Verlander tonight, it makes sense that we’re willing to fade the hottest hitter in the N.L. and the heart of the Brewers lineup. Christian Yelich is 0-for-3 in a very small sample against Verlander, while teammate Mike Moustakas (12-for-68, 14 Ks) can tell him all about how the former A.L. Cy Young award winner uses his breaking ball to baffle lefties. Yelich has a positive rating against every pitch but split-fingered fastballs this year, and Verlander can use his slider to similar effect against LHBs. Verlander throws that pitch 25.6% of the time and is becoming even more adept with it in the later stages of his career.

Stack To Fade

Astros vs. RHP Brandon Woodruff (Brewers)

Brandon Woodruff is a very talented young RHP with a lot of upside in GPP formats relative to his price tag on DraftKings. The third-year man has broken out with a fastball that rates 14.5 runs above average, leading to a 29.5% K-Rate this season and two double-digit strikeout performances over his last three outings. The Astros are beset by injuries with Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa, and George Springer on the shelf. While that opens the door for cheaper hitters to start, it also weakens the quality of that usually fearsome lineup. Houston actually owns the fifth-lowest LD Rate (19.5%) and second-lowest BB Rate (8.1%) in LvR matchups. Woodruff has been undone by walks (2.79 BB/9 ratio) on the road but is posting a 0.62 HR/9 ratio and won’t be afraid to attack the Astros’ injury-depleted lineup.