DraftKings MLB Lineups & Picks for April 21, 2017

Written By Nate Weitzer on April 21, 2017

DFS MLB Lineups for April 21, 2017 at Draftkings.com & Fanduel.com

For this baseball season, each day there’s a good slate of DFS MLB games, we’ll be writing up a group of pitchers and hitters that we’re considering for our cash and GPP lineups on DraftKings and FanDuel. We’ll also provide a list of stacks to consider, MLB start times, starting pitchers, and game run totals to give you a good idea of where the fantasy goodness might come from on a given night. As with any DFS sport, the advice below is relevant for fantasy purposes. A player or team might be better or worse from a fantasy perspective than they are in real life due to matchup, price, park factor, etc. This is important when constructing a roster.

The best advice we can give this early in the season is to remember that baseball is a game of variance. You can make a really solid lineup and still fall short of the cash line. Even the best pitchers have horrible starts, and the best hitters in the game can still go 0 for 4. Baseball is funny like that. Trust the process and know that if you’re playing quality lineups, you’ll be a winner in the long term. The chalk busted last night and contrarian lineups won all the GPPs. Sometimes, when evvvvveryone is liking a certain pitcher/batter/stack, it can really be profitable to zig when others are zagging.

Another thing to remember is to always check the weather. Always. Make this something that is part of your basic routine. Baseball games can get postponed! Your players receive no points from postponed games!


DraftKings Fastball: $33 buy-in, $300k guaranteed  
DraftKings Four Seamer: $4 buy-in, $175k guaranteed (20 entry max)
DraftKings Home Run: $444 buy-in, $500k guaranteed 
FanDuel Rally: $7 buy-in, $77k guaranteed
FanDuel DEMONster: $666 buy-in, $500k guaranteed
FanDuel Squeeze: $4 buy-in, $175k guaranteed


7:05p: Red Sox (Pomeranz) @ Orioles (Asher): 8.5
7:05p: Braves (Colon) @ Phillies (Hellickson): 8
7:05p: Yankees (Sabathia) @ Pirates (Glasnow): 8
7:10p: Astros (Fiers) @ Rays (Cobb): 8
7:10p: Nationals (Roark) @ Mets (deGrom): 6.5
7:10p: Cubs (Lester) @ Reds (Adleman): 8.5
8:05p: Royals (Karns) @ Rangers (Hamels): 9
8:10p: Indians (Kluber) @ White Sox (Quintana): 7.5
8:10p: Cardinals (Wainwright) @ Brewers (Peralta): 8.5
8:10p: Tigers (Verlander) @ Twins (Santiago): 8
8:40p: Giants (Cueto) @ Rockies (Chatwood): 10.5
9:40p: Dodgers (Wood) @ Diamondbacks (Walker): 9.5
10:05p: Mariners (Iwakuma) @ Athletics (Manaea): 7.5
10:07p: Blue Jays (Latos) @ Angels (Meyer): 9
10:10p: Marlins (Conley) @ Padres (Cahill): 7.5

Best DFS MLB Pitchers for April 21, 2017

Jon Lester @ CIN ($10.6k DraftKings, $10.6k FanDuel)
Lester seems a bit under priced because of a lack of strikeouts over his first 3 starts this season, yet he’s been stingy as ever with a 1.00 ERA and a 47.8% Ground Ball Rate thus far and as hitters try to make adjustments they may wind up striking out more often against the Cubs southpaw. Tonight he’ll face a Reds team that posted the fourth-lowest collective batting average (.242) with an above average 22.6% K-Rate against lefties last season and Lester held the Reds to a .212 average while going 2-1 against Cincy in 2016. He has a very solid floor and could flash upside if the Cubs offense wakes up and makes it easier for him to earn that Win bonus.

Justin Verlander @ MIN ($10.3k DraftKings, $9.4k FanDuel)
If Verlander struggles in a second consecutive start, we can call it a trend, but at the moment his 9-run implosion against the Indians can be chalked up to an outlier. After all, he had posted a Quality Start in 17 of his last 18 appearances prior to that outing while posting a sterling 1.96 ERA and .179 BAA during the second half of last season. He struggled against the Indians lefty-heavy lineup, but Minnesota really only has a couple of platoon specialists in Max Kepler and Joe Mauer, who is a shell of his former self, so you can roll Verlander out without much concern tonight.

Johnny Cueto @ COL ($8.1k DraftKings, $8.3k FanDuel)
Cueto is dramatically under priced for obvious reasons as he travels to notoriously hitter-friendly Coors Field, but he’s actually been great in the thin air with a 1.23 ERA and .208 BAA to go 3-0 over his last 3 trips to Colorado. Cueto’s been reliable to open the season with 3 consecutive wins and he’s priced over $2K cheaper than his previous low in price tag on DK. Current Rockies are sporting a 21.3% K-Rate in their careers against Cueto and Colorado has somehow been awful with the third-lowest collective batting average (.207) and second-fewest runs scored (18) at home so far this season. This play is not for the faint of heart and is reserved for GPPs only, but could rocket you up the leaderboard should Cueto go deep and limit damage.

Bartolo Colon @ PHI ($6.9k DraftKings, $7.8k FanDuel)
There are a couple of appealing veterans slated to pitch tonight including C.C. Sabathia, but the ageless wonder is probably the best of the bunch. When Colon gets going, he can eat through innings and mow down any National League lineup, as the sole blip in his age 42 campaign has been a rough outing against a Marlins team that’s owned him in the past. Current Phillies are batting a collective .205 (32-for-156) with just 1 HR and 40 K’s in their careers against Colon, who is 10-3 with a 3.01 ERA and 7.83 K/9 ratio over the last 3 seasons against Philadelphia.

Other pitchers to consider: Jeremy Hellickson, Adam Conley, Drew Pomeranz, C.C. Sabathia

Best DFS MLB Hitters for April 21, 2017

Jose Altuve @ TB ($4.5k DraftKings, $4.2k FanDuel)
Last year’s DFS darling is really starting to heat up with a .432 batting average, 4 doubles and 6 SB over his last 10 appearances and he draws a great matchup tonight. Rays RHP Alex Cobb has struggled over the past couple seasons as he attempts to come back from elbow surgery and he gave up 4 ER on 11 hits in his last outing. With his low-arm angle delivery, Cobb is susceptible to a contact hitter such as Altuve who is comfortable hitting low line drives and finding the gaps in the infield. Cobb has also allowed a startlingly 86% success rate on 66 stolen base attempts throughout his career, which is where Altuve derives most of his upside.

Andrew Benintendi @ BAL ($4.4k DraftKings, $3.5k FanDuel)
The Red Sox best prospect is beginning to realize his limitless potential with a .322 batting average and .838 OPS through 15 MLB appearances this season. Benintendi could serve as a great addition to a Red Sox stack against new Orioles RHP Alec Asher, who is sporting a rough 5.43 ERA over 12 MLB starts and might not be ready to face a dangerous Red Sox lineup. Asher allowed lefties to post a 35% Hard Contact Rate with a 1.35 HR/9 ratio last year while generally getting lucky to avoid a higher ERA and Benintendi has been flashing a great floor-ceiling combination with a .376 wOBA against RHP this season.

Billy Hamilton vs. CHC ($3.9k DraftKings, $3.3k FanDuel)
If you want to consider one hitter alone against Lester, it should be Hamilton. The biggest flaw in Lester’s game is his inability to hold runners on or even to throw over to first, which has led to a 75% success rate with 88 successful stolen bases off him over the last 3 seasons. Hamilton, who is obviously one of the premier speed threats in the game, is 6-for-6 stealing off Lester during that span and he’s been able to reach with 6 hits over 10 career at-bats against the southpaw.

Other hitters to consider: Paul Goldschmidt, Matt Carpenter, Jonathan Villar, Nelson Cruz, Eric Thames, Ender Inciarte, Brad Miller, Josh Reddick, Freddie Freeman, Yasmany Tomas, Jay Bruce 


Blue Jays vs Alex Meyer
The fact that Josh Donaldson (calf) is out makes the Blue Jays offense seem less potent, but they certainly have the bats to replace him to an extent with Kendrys Morales capable of batting third in the mean time. This is a contrarian stack because the Blue Jays have been ice cold to open the season, but guys like Devon Travis and Jose Bautista could heat up in a prime matchup against Meyer, who posted a 5.68 ERA over 7 MLB appearances last season. Troy Tulowitzki is swinging much better so far this season and you shouldn’t overlook Toronto’s current hot hitter in Kevin Pillar.

Rangers vs Nate Karns
The Rangers elite offense is even more dangerous at home and they’ve been great so far this season thanks in part to the emergence of Nomar Mazara amongst others. That young LHB will certainly be worth targeting against a RHP in Karns, who was actually more vulnerable against righties last year. Karns allowed RHB to post a .338 wOBA with a whopping 1.72 HR/9 ratio in RvR matchups, so Mike Napoli and Carlos Gomez could both flash their upside as potential GPP plays. Elvis Andrus is a sneaky play as usual and we might see Ryan Rua crack the lineup.

Cardinals vs Wily Peralta
He may be off to a good start this season, but Peralta faces an all too familiar foe tonight in the Red Birds. Current Cardinals are batting a collective .303 (54-for-178) with 9 XBH and 5 HR in their careers against Perlata, while Matt Carpenter (19-for-41, 5 doubles, 3 HR) leads the charge in that respect. Stephen Piscotty and Randal Grichuk both have upside as streaky hitters for St. Louis, while Jedd Gyroko is a longshot to consider and Yadier Molina can offer some salary relief with a good floor as a catcher.

Other Stacks to consider:
Red Sox vs. Alec Asher
Giants vs. Tyler Chatwood
Tigers vs. Hector Santiago
Diamondbacks vs. Alex Wood
Astros vs. Alex Cobb

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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