What’s good y’all?! MLB IS BACKKKKKK! I’m currently writing this article at 12:37 AM on Thursday, because well, I can’t sleep. I’m way too excited to watch some baseball tomorrow! I feel like a little kid on Christmas Eve!!!
I hope y’all had a successful NBA season, but we’re going to turn the page to MLB! Enough of those stupid, tanking rotations in March NBA DFS, bring on the advanced MLB stats! In this article, we’ll be touching up on the 3 game slate that will kick off the MLB season!!! Let’s just dive on into it!
Note: Mainly going to play the early slate on only Fanduel…….i’ll explain why later in the article.
CHC (-200) @ MIA – 8 O/U
So the game that ends up starting the season off is one of the best teams in the MLB facing off against the new look, dumpster fire Marlins. This game is fairly easy to break down. Play Lester, play all the Cubs bats, and fade the hell out of the Marlins. Jon Lester ($9,300) is obviously one of the safer plays on this safe. If it wasn’t for Thor, he’d be #1 by a huge margin. This doesn’t really need too much analysis. In the offseason, the Marlins traded Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, Christian Yelich, and Dee Gordon, plus JT Realmuto is starting the season on the DL. Last year, this offense was solid, but that’s literally their top 5 hitters all gone. This lineup IS GARBAGE. Lester might not have the stuff he once used to, but he’s so safe for a W in this spot.
Which Cubs bats should you play? ALL OF EM. In all honesty, Urena is hot garbage. Cubs obviously have a very potent offense and I expect them to go off in this spot. Anthony Rizzo ($4,600) and Kris Bryant ($4,300) are pretty expensive, but rightfully so. Ian Happ ($3,300) can give you some salary relief, but my favorite play out of them all is Willson Contreras ($3,200). I expect the young catcher to really make the next step this year. Also, with Fanduel’s new format, people aren’t going to be quick to roster catchers. I promise you that Contreras is not your normal catcher. This dude will MASH this year and I expect it to start on Opening Day.
PIT (-115) @ DET – 9.5 O/U
In this game, we have a matchup against 2 bad teams. 2 bad teams usually means 2 bad pitchers, which is definitely the case here (hence the high total). This is why I am only playing the early slate on Fanduel today. On DraftKings, you are forced to roster 2 pitchers. Unless you want limited exposure to the Cubs bats and/or punt a lot of positions, you would be forced to pick one of Nova or Zimmerman. I simply DO NOT want to do that. Both these guys have very limited strike out potential, which is what we need in Daily Fantasy Baseball. I will not be playing either of these guys (for you DK players, gun to my head, I’d go Nova).
Since these pitchers are bad and allow a lot of contact, we CAN target hitters in this game. PIT bats give us a lot of salary relief. Adam Frazier ($2,000) should be leading off and he showed some potential last year. He’s a fairly safe option since he is min-price. Josh Harrison ($2,700) is also another cheap guy that I like against Zimmerman. He’ll be batting 2nd in this lineup (if you are new to MLB DFS, we target guys close to the top of the order). Marte and Polanco are also fine options but my favorite play from PIT is Corey Dickerson ($2,600). Zimmerman struggled against both righties and lefties, but he gave up most of his power to lefties. On the flip side of things, Dickerson posted a nice .220 ISO against righties last year.
Nova is also a guy that doesn’t strike out anyone, but he also tends to limit hard contact. I still believe he isn’t a very good pitcher, so we can still target a few bats against him on this short slate. Candelario and Martin are fine punts at close to min-price, but if I target anyone it will be Miggy ($3,800) and Castellanos ($3,500). I like them the most because they have the power upside. Homeruns are really what push us into the top 1% of GPP’s, which is what we all want. Overall, really targeting the PIT bats, but wouldn’t mind a few DET as one-off’s.
STL @ NYM (-139) – 6.5 O/U
LET’S GO CARDINALS!! If you follow me on twitter (@breeden_bryce) you could see that I’ve been waiting for this game for MONTHS. Honestly, it should be a pretty good one. I love me a good pitcher’s duel, which is what I think we’ll end up seeing in this one. Some days, Carlos Martinez ($7,900) looks like he can be an ELITE pitcher in this league. When he’s on and stays focused (he’s kind of a headcase), his stuff is up there with the Cy Young’s of the league. He’s SUPER intriguing in this spot. His price is so cheap that his upside is monstrous today. I wouldn’t be surprised if he ended up being the top pitcher on this slate. CarMo does tend to struggle at times vs lefties though and the Mets will be trotting out 4 of them on Opening Day. He isn’t a dumpster fire against them, but it’s something to worry about. What intrigues me the most is if you roster him, you can EASILY fit a 4-man Cubbies stack. CarMo is by far my favorite GPP pitcher on this slate.
You thought I forgot about Thor didn’t you? No, I didn’t! Syndergaard ($10,300) is obviously one of the best pitchers in the whole damn league. This is a solid matchup for him too. Even though the Cardinals added Ozuna in the offseason, they still tend to strike out a ton against elite pitchers. This Cardinals lineup has a chance to be pretty damn good though, so there’s risk involved with Syndergaard. Overall, I probably won’t roster him. No…no no, it isn’t because I’m a huge Cardinals fan. I just want all the expensive Cubs bats in my lineup and it is hard to fit them with Thor.
I’m going to be honest, I’m not really planning on targeting too many bats in this matchup. These 2 pitchers legit have a shot to compete for the NL Cy Young. This total is the lowest on the slate for a reason. If I had to choose, for STL, I’d look at Paul DeJong ($2,800). DeJong showed he could hit last year. He struggles with his K% and low BB rate, but he showed his pop. The reason I’ll probably roster him is because the shortstop position on the Early Slate is just horrible. Unless you’re totally punting, I like him as a guy that can homer. Marcell Ozuna ($3,600) has been on fire this Spring and can hit off of anybody. He’s another guy I’ll take a look at.
You remember me mentioning that CarMo can sometimes struggle with his stuff, especially against lefties? Well, that leads me to play a few Mets lefties off of him. Brandon Nimmo ($2,500), Jay Bruce ($2,900), and Astrubel Cabrera ($2,600) could all see success off of Martinez if he doesn’t have his stuff. I would throw Cespedes ($3,200) in there to complete that stack. All should hit in the top 5 of the batting order and if Carlos isn’t on, this could be the low-owned, GPP winning stack. (Bruce would be my favorite one-off, but I think you’d be better off stacking this team if you want to play any of them.)
Alright guys, that’s going to wrap up this article! I REALLY hope y’all are as excited as I am to watch some baseball tomorrow!!! I really, really hope that this article helps y’all win some money!!!!!!! If you have any questions, feel free to get ahold of any of the guys at FanCave DFS, or hit me up on twitter (@breeden_bryce). Thanks for reading!!!