MLB DFS: DraftKings & FanDuel Main Slate Strategy Snapshot – Sunday 6/18/23

Sunday’s main slate commences at 1:05 ET as usual, with nine games on DraftKings and, apparently, 10 on FanDuel. The blue site decided to cancel their typical approach to doubleheaders by including the first game of the Yankees vs Red Sox action today, and we have no starting pitcher for Boston as of 8:30am ET. Content across the site will be updated assuming we have the announced starter in time. The rest of the slate looks loaded for upside at the plate once again, several low-end pitchers are facing strong competition, and some of the same situations that were in play on Saturday come back equally strong to close out the weekend. Most specifically, the Angels and Braves are both at the top of our stacks board once again in very good matchups.

Don’t miss our new Stack Suggestions feature and our Power Index for more on the top opportunities at the plate tonight.

We are off from shows through the weekend, returning Monday.

Note: All analysis is written utilizing available projected lineups as of the early morning, pay close attention to confirmed lineups and adjust accordingly. This article is posted and updated as it is written, so if a game has not been filled in, check back in a few minutes. Update notes are provided as lineups are confirmed to the best of our ability. Still, lineup changes are not typically updated as lock approaches, so stay tuned to official news for any late changes.

MLB DFS: Game by Game Main Slate Strategy Snapshot – 6/18/23

Baltimore Orioles (-108/4.34) @ Chicago Cubs (+101/4.24)

The Orioles and Cubs square off to open our overview, with Baltimore facing up and down veteran righty Jameson Taillon who costs $6,700/$6,800 across sites. Taillon has not been good through most of this year, in his 11 starts and 48.1 innings the righty has a 6.70 ERA and a 4.84 xFIP. A two-run differential certainly means that Taillon is not entirely at fault for the earned runs, but even the xFIP is not an overly appealing number and Taillon is a low-end strikeout pitcher at 20.5% this year and 20.7% in 177.1 innings last year. Taillon was better overall in 2022, he had a 3.79 xFIP for the season but things have not come together well this year. Fortune seems to be on the side of the Orioles bats in this matchup, but they are only a mid-priority stack given just a 4.34-run implied total in the matchup. Gunnar Henderson is projected to lead off for Baltimore once again, the surging infielder is priced at $4,000/$3,400 with eligibility at third base and shortstop on both sites. Henderson is up to .237/.343/.449 with a .212 ISO, a 121 WRC+, and 10 home runs, he is transitioning rapidly from premium prospect to star. Adley Rutschman has 10 home runs and a .156 ISO with a 132 WRC+ which is one of the top marks on this club. Anthony Santander has nine home runs and a .195 ISO in a bit of a down season for power so far. The switch-hitter still has a sturdy 9.6% barrel rate and 46.3% hard-hit rate, and he leads the team in our home run model at 10.15. Ryan O’Hearn has been good over 86 plate appearances this year, the projected cleanup hitter has five home runs with a .278 ISO and 176 WRC+ in the tiny sample and should be a productive option from the left side. Austin Hays has been excellent at .312/.352/.506 with eight home runs and has created runs 36% better than average but costs $3,900/$3,100. Aaron HicksAdam FrazierRamon Urias, and Jorge Mateo round out the projected lineup. Any of the bunch is a fine option as a mix-in and they should be included in lineups if building numerous stacks of Orioles, but they are not the top options on the team. Hicks washed out of New York but has been a fixture for Baltimore and is producing moderate output. Frazier, Urias, and Mateo are all capable mix-in options in the infield with moderate power and good upside for speed, Mateo is the least reliable but has the highest ceiling.

The Cubs draw righty Dean Kremer in his 15th start of the season. Roughly halfway through the year, Kremer has a 4.74 ERA and 4.38 xFIP with a 19.9% strikeout rate. The righty induces swinging-strikes at a 10.2% clip with a 25.8% CSW% and has yielded far too much premium contact. Kremer has allowed a 9.6% barrel rate with 91 mph of exit velocity and 47.3% hard hits, amounting to a 3.68% home run rate that should probably be even higher. Kremer is not a great option for MLB DFS today, he projects just in the lower-middle range of the board. The Cubs lineup includes Mike Tauchman in the leadoff role. The fill-in outfielder has a .404 on-base percentage in 95 plate appearances with a 111 WRC+, he is cheap and playable in stacks. Nico Hoerner has stolen 16 bases in 282 plate appearances while hitting four home runs and compiling a 101 WRC+ this year, he is a $5,000/$3.400 option at second base. Seiya Suzuki has six home runs and has created runs 17% better than average this year, Ian Happ has hit five homers and created runs 22% better than average, and Dansby Swanson has seven home runs and a 111 WRC+, they are the team’s core of run creators. Cody Bellinger is back in the lineup after missing time with an injury. When we last checked in, Bellinger was in the midst of a comeback season at .267/.335/.487 with seven home runs and a .220 ISO over 170 plate appearances. Christopher Morel has 12 home runs in 116 plate appearances with a staggering .396 ISO and 172 WRC+. Yan Gomes is a good option as an affordable catcher, he costs $3,500/$2,700 despite hitting seven home runs while slashing .271/.300/.443 with a 99 WRC+ over 150 plate appearances so far this season. Gomes has a strong 11.5% barrel rate and is carrying a 6.71 in our home run model today. Nick Madrigal closes out the Cubs lineup as a mix-in infielder.

Play: Orioles bats/stacks, Cubs bats/stacks, both as lower-mid options

Update Notes: the confirmed Orioles lineup runs exactly as expected. The Cubs lineup is as planned from 1-7 with productive Miguel Amaya hitting eighth as a nice piece of value for $2,500 on either site, particularly where catchers are important. Yan Gomes steps out for a day off.

Colorado Rockies (+267/3.49) @ Atlanta Braves (-302/6.16)

The loaded game of the day is once again found in Atlanta, the Rockies are going to be happy to get out of town but they will have Chase Anderson face the powerhouse Braves before they do, which has Atlanta sitting at a 6.16-run implied team total that leads the day by a wide margin. The Braves will have Charlie Morton making his 14th start of the season in a good spot against a lousy lineup. Morton has a 25.7% strikeout rate and 3.60 ERA with a 3.95 xFIP so far this season. He has walked too many at 10% and has a 1.44 WHIP but has induced a healthy 12.7% swinging-strike rate with a 31.2% CSW%. The veteran has a fair amount of upside at $10,500/$10,200 in this matchup. The Rockies are tied for 29th in baseball with an 89 WRC+ against right-handed pitching as a unit and they strike out at a 24.6% pace in the split. Leadoff man Jurickson Profar has been 25% worse than average creating runs in 285 plate appearances this year, a total that is matched by two-hitter Ezequiel Tovar in his 261 opportunities. If this is your first day with baseball, you should know that that is not how one typically builds a lineup. You should also know that you are probably now qualified to do just as good a job managing this team as Bud Black has done. Profar and Tovar are low-end options even at their cheap prices, they have single-digit home run ceilings and a moderate amount of speed that has not been utilized, they also do not get on base to provide correlated scoring potential. Ryan McMahon is the most playable Rockies bat most days, the lefty has 10 home runs and a .220 ISO while creating runs 12% better than average. Elias Diaz has value as a $4,200 catcher where the position is required, he has been good this season but the matchup against Morton is not ideal. Nolan Jones has been excellent since his promotion, he is now slashing .324/.400/.563 in 80 plate appearances. Jones has a 6.12 to lead the team in our home run model this afternoon. Randal Grichuk hits for average this year but has not driven the ball well with just a 6.1% barrel rate. Mike Moustakas has four home runs and a .171 ISO on the season, the lefty is a mix-in at best. Harold Castro and Brenton Doyle round out the projected lineup, Doyle is moderately interesting given some home run upside and speed as a cheap wraparound play.

The Braves are blowing the top off of our home run model once again today and they are ranked second by our aggregate fantasy point projection totals. Atlanta has a lineup that sports seven hitters with more than 10 home runs this season, they are facing Chase Anderson, a veteran righty who has a 2.72 ERA but a 4.60 xFIP and just a 17.4% strikeout rate this season. Anderson has allowed home runs, his 4.17% home run rate is elevated despite a 6.5% barrel rate and 29.6% hard hits over 36.1 innings and six starts, he was better across the board last season but does not look like an option at $6,800/$6,900 in this spot. Ronald Acuna Jr. remains a $6,600/$4,600 option from site to site, he could go higher given his current 15 home runs and 30 stolen bases totals, Acuna is an MLB DFS demigod. Ozzie Albies has 16 home runs to sit second on the team for the season. The switch-hitting second baseman has a .233 ISO and has created runs 13% better than average, if he hits second again he is a massive chunk of value at $5,100/$3,300. Austin Riley and Sean Murphy have major power on the right side of the plate. The third baseman has been a bit up and down to start the season but still has 11 home rnus and a 104 WRC+, Murphy has a dozen homers and a 148 mark for run creation, he is an outstanding option at catcher whenever he is in the lineup. Matt Olson delivered his 20th long ball of the season as yesterday’s overall home run pick, he has a good shot at making it 21 or 22 by day’s end. Olson costs $6,300/$3,900 and would be in a strong RBI spot if he is hitting fifth. Marcell Ozuna and Eddie Rosario have been productive outfield veterans for Atlanta, Ozuna has 13 home runs and a .241 ISO while Rosario checks in with 11 and a .223 mark. Neither hits for a ton of batting average, but they have pulled themselves to respectability across their triple-slashes and both sit above average for run creation. Orlando Arcia delivered another strong performance as an under-owned value option late in the lineup. The shortstop remains more valuable on the blue site where he plays three positions for $2,900 but he is viable at $3,800 at shortstop on DraftKings. Arcia is slashing .339/.398/.494 with a 144 WRC+ and six home runs in 191 plate appearances. Michael Harris II has five homers and seven stolen bases with a 74 WRC+ in a down season after winning the Rookie of the Year in 2022, he is a low-owned value option from the bottom of the lineup.

Play: Braves bats/stacks aggressively, Charlie Morton

Update Notes: the “who cares” lineup for the Rockies looks mostly as expected, the Braves will have Travis d’Arnaud catching and hitting cleanup, he is a minor downgrade from Murphy, but he has plenty of power and has four home runs in 100 plate appearances this season after hitting 18 in 426 last year.

Miami Marlins (-149/4.99) @ Washington Nationals (+137/4.11)

The Marlins land on the slate with a healthy 4.99-run implied team total that is the slate’s second-highest total, though it sits more than a full run below the Braves. The matchup against lefty Patrick Corbin should play to Miami’s strengths, Corbin has a 4.81 ERA and 4.47 xFIP this season and he has allowed a 3.70% home run rate that might have some luck involved to be even as low as it is (it is not low). The lefty has allowed a 9.1% barrel rate and 47.1% hard hits with 91.7 mph of exit velocity but has kept launch angle to just 10 degrees on the average, which has been his saving grace, for whatever it has been worth. Corbin is not a strong option at $7,300/$7,500 against a Miami team that is tied for second-best in the game by WRC+ against left-handed pitching at 141. That mark matches the run-creation output in the split that Tampa Bay has posted this season and sits five points behind the league-leading Braves. The Marlins have a .176 ISO in the split which is notably lower than those top two teams, they should not be expected to hit seven home runs today, but one or two long balls and a big day for sequencing and run creation seem likely. Miami’s projected lineup opens as usual with Luis Arraez, who the team seems to have figured out should hit first every day, finally. Arraez is slashing .388/.440/.480 with a 154 WRC+ ahead of masher Jorge Soler, who is the overall home run pick for today at 14.19. Soler destroys left-handed pitching, he has a monumental .556 ISO, and has created runs 147% better than average while slashing .333/.438/.889(!) in the split this season. Soler has 11 home runs in 218 plate appearances against righties this year, he has nine in 64 opportunities against lefties. For his career, Soler’s ISO is .268 against left-handed pitching, he is one of the day’s very best spots for power potential. Out of a 4.99-run total, one would have to think that Arraez and Soler account for three of those, with a bit of weakness as the lineup continues. Bryan De La Cruz is having a good year and hits from the right side of the plate, he is slashing .273/.326./.426 with eight home runs and a 107 WRC+ in 273 chances this year. Garrett Cooper has also hit eight home runs in 196 plate appearances. Cooper costs $3,200/$2,600 at first base. Yuli Gurriel is a capable veteran who won a batting title just two seasons ago. Gurriel sits at .262/.320/.396 with a 95 WRC+ in 181 opportunities this season. Jon Berti has eight stolen bases in 207 plate appearances after stealing 41 in 404 chances last year. Berti’s on-base percentage needs to climb from .307 if he is going to push stolen bases up the ladder again. Jonathan Davis, Jacob Stallings, and Garrett Hampson round out the projected lineup, they are mix-in options at best, Davis leads the group with a 95 WRC+ but has only made 68 plate appearances, Stallings has a 36 in 114 and Hampson an 84 in 133 chances.

The Nationals are also better against left-handed pitching but not nearly as good as the Marlins. The team sits 13th in baseball with a 108 WRC+ in the split as a group, their .139 ISO shows a lack of a Soler-type power hitter, but their 18.1% strikeout rate against southpaws ranks fourth-best behind only the Blue Jays, Astros, and Guardians in the split. Luzardo is better than the average lefty, he has a 27.3% strikeout rate with a 4.17 ERA and 3.71 xFIP in 14 starts and 77.2 innings. The southpaw is a good option on this slate at $9,900/$9,500, he ranks among our top pitchers for the day and should be able to book clean innings with an upside for strikeouts beyond what the Nationals typically yield on this side of splits. There is a marginal amount of risk, given the opponent’s productivity against lefties, but we are firmly on team Luzardo in this one. The Nationals lineup features a handful of playable righties who have been featured in good matchup spots in this space throughout the year. Lane Thomas has 10 home runs and has created runs 20% better than average in 290 plate appearances this season. The right-handed outfielder has a 180 WRC+ with a .276 ISO against left-handed pitching this year, he is a go-to if rostering Nationals this season. Luis Garcia is slashing .280/.314/.395 with a 90 WRC+ in 262 plate appearances as a mix-in infield option. Jeimer Candelario has eight home runs this year, all of which came against right-handed pitching, he is not nearly as good against lefties. Joey Meneses has a 97 WRC+ with two home runs overall this year but is slashing a healthy .297/.338/.383 despite the lack of power output. Stone Garrett has a 7.01 in our home run model and a 50.6% hard-hit rate in his 129 plate appearances this year for just $2,600/$2,500, he is a viable option in the outfield for a bargain price. Keibert Ruiz is a sneaky power bat at catcher, he has eight home runs in 234 plate appearances this year and has posted a 10.2% barrel rate. Dominic SmithVictor Robles, and CJ Abrams round out the lineup, Robles is easily the most interesting in the bunch at just $2,400/$2,500.

Play: Marlins bats/stacks, Jesus Luzardo, minor shares of hedge Nationals bats

Update Notes: Luis Arraez gets the day off in an important change for Miami, De La Cruz will lead off and gains a minor bump, Soler-Gurriel-Cooper-Berti-Fortes-Davis-Hampson-Jacob Amaya follow. The confirmed Nationals lineup includes Michael Chavis in the seventh spot, Chavis is a moderately productive hitter for his career against lefties. Ildemaro Vargas is hitting eighth as a low-end play.

New York Yankees (-111/4.89) @ Boston Red Sox (102/4.72)

The Yankees are now pulling in the top projection in our model for run creation and fair marks for power upside while landing at cheap prices up and down the lineup, making them one of the top stacking options in the afternoon game at Fenway Park. New York will be facing Kaleb Ort, a limited reliever who will open the game before handing off to the bullpen. There is no viable FanDuel pitcher on Boston today. The Yankees’ confirmed lineup includes Jake Bauers in the leadoff spot for $2,600. Bauers has a 7.31 in our home run model, he has hit five in 109 plate appearances as a Yankee with a 107 WRC+ in the small sample at a cheap salary. Giancarlo Stanton should never cost $3,100, the big slugger has an 18.5% barrel rate and 55.4% hard-hit rate with a 12.36 in our home run model and he looks like the FanDuel bargain star player of the day. Gleyber Torres has 11 home runs and a 110 WRC+ and is hitting third between Stanton and Anthony Rizzo, which should be a productive spot for the second baseman. Rizzo fills first base for just $2,700, he has 11 home runs but dipped badly in the back-half of May into June and is now slashing just .265/.342/.437. It seems likely that Rizzo is toughing out some nagging injuries while covering for the absence of Aaron Judge. DJ LeMahieu slots in fifth, he has a 46.8% hard-hit rate with seven home runs but a lousy .236/.296/.395 triple slash. Isiah Kiner-Falefa is not a good hitter, he has three home runs and has created runs 27% worse than average this season. Billy McKinneyJose Trevino, and Anthony Volpe round out the lineup, McKinney and Volpe have any-given-slate potential, Trevino is more of a defensive catcher.

The Red Sox are facing Clarke Schmidt, who has been a capable starter this season for New York. Schmidt has a 24.1% strikeout rate and 3.93 xFIP with a 4.70 ERA that looks worse on the surface. The righty has been good at finding strikeouts but lousy for premium contact and power, and was the victim of a few quick hooks that linger in his ERA. Schmidt has potential at $8,000 on the FanDuel slate, there are limited pitching options and he has enough talent to get through the Boston lineup three times, but the play is not without risk. Boston’s lineup opens in typical fashion with excellent leadoff man Alex Verdugo, who has a .367 on-base percentage and 123 WRC+ over 294 plate appearances. Justin Turner had a big weekend and how has 10 home runs and a 121 WRC+ for the season while costing just $3,200 at first or third base. Rafael Devers fills third base, so we probably want Turner at first if he is in use. Devers has 17 home runs and a .259 ISO this season with a 109 WRC+ that is offset somewhat by his lowly triple-slash numbers. At .243/.299/.502, Devers is having an uncharacteristically bad season for average and on-base skills. Adam Duvall has light tower power from the right side, and Masataka Yoshida brings plenty of quality from the left with his 44% hard-hit rate. The duo are a good tandem to include in a lineup or they can be alternated through numerous stacks of Red Sox. Yoshida leads the team with a 137 WRC+ because we are ignoring Duvall’s 198 as it only comes in 62 plate appearances. Christian Arroyo, Jarren DuranEnrique Hernandez, and Connor Wong are mix-and-match pieces, the catcher would be a sneaky-good play on DraftKings given his stout contact profile, Wong can be utilized in small doses at the corner or utility spot in FanDuel lineups, but his spot in the batting order could be better.

Play: Yankees bats/stacks, Clarke Schmidt, Red Sox bats/stacks

Update Notes: both lineups were confirmed in the fist cut.

St. Louis Cardinals (+110/4.63) @ New York Mets (-119/4.98)

With struggling veteran righty Carlos Carrasco on the mound for the Mets, the Cardinals are looking like a good option for stacks on this slate. Carrasco has a 5.71 ERA and 5.46 xFIP in eight starts and just 41 innings this season. The righty has struck out a mere 13.3% of opposing hitters while walking 9.9% and allowing a 4.42% home run rate on 90.5 mph exit velocity and a 42.2% hard-hit rate. This version of the righty looks more like a target on the mound than a viable option for MLB DFS, even at $6,000/$7,000, even against a team that does not win ballgames despite the talent in their lineup. The Cardinals lineup should open with Brendan Donovan, who has created runs four percent better than average and typically leads off against righties. Donovan has six home runs and four stolen bases, he provides most of his value as a run-scorer ahead of the team’s talent. Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado are projected to hit second and third, but Nolan Gorman has seen many of his plate appearances hitting third between the two veteran stars. In any configuration that is a highly playable trio today. Goldschmidt is creating runs 41% better than average and has 12 home runs this season, Arenado has one more long ball than his teammate and has created runs 15% better than average at the hot corner, and Gorman slots in with 15 home runs and a 122 WRC+ with a .249 ISO. In the projected lineup Gorman drops to sixth, with Willson Contreras and all his struggles hitting cleanup. The typically productive backstop has cratered this season at .201/.295/.358 with an 84 WRC+. Jordan Walker climbs to fifth in the projected batting order, the rookie has five home runs and has created runs 28% better than average in his 133 chances this season, he has been good despite being sent down for a portion of the first three months of the season. Paul DeJongTommy Edman, and Alec Burleson round out the lineup, they are all playable pieces in a variety of combinations, DeJong is best used to finish a mid-lineup stack with his power, while Edman makes a good wraparound play with individual upside for moderate power output and speed, and Burleson is cheap.

The Cardinals will be starting lefty Matthew Liberatore who has been a different pitcher at the MLB level in his short sample of 11 starts and 55.2 innings over the past two seasons. The rookie had a 17.4% strikeout rate last year and sits at just 16.3% over four starts and 21 innings in 2023. Liberatore has a 5.14 ERA and 5.20 xFIP with a 10.2% walk rate and he has allowed a 10.1% barrel rate and 40.6% hard hits with 90.4 mph of exit velocity. The lefty has managed to hold the launch angle down in the small sample, the 9.8-degree average launch is the only thing keeping his home run rate from exploding. Liberatore costs $6,600/$6,800 and is carrying a lower-mid projection on the pitching board. New York’s lineup opens with Brandon Nimmo who has a 48% hard-hit rate to go with his strong .380 on-base percentage and 32% better-than-average mark for run creation. For just $4,000/$3,100, Nimmo is always a great way to start working with a Mets stack. Francisco Alvarez has a dozen home runs in 163 plat appearances as a rookie and is entrenched at catcher in Queens. Alvarez has a .276 ISO and has created runs 20% better than average but he costs just $3,800 where his position is mandatory. Tommy Pham sits 17% better than average for run creation and the veteran outfielder has six homers and six steals so far this year at a cheap price. Francisco Lindor is the team’s star with Pete Alonso out of the lineup, Lindor has 12 home runs and a .200 ISO but sits four percent below average for run creation and has a very weak triple-slash this season. The shortstop is cheap for his talent at $4,600/$3,100 this afternoon. Starling Marte is slashing .261/.317/.335 with an 88 WRC+ after a slow start but has come on strong lately. The outfielder is still inexpensive and now has 19 stolen bases on the season with three home runs. Jeff McNeil is still getting on base at a .347 clip despite a .273 average which means his BABIP must be down again this year. The slap-hitter is a correlated scoring option at a fair price with second base and outfield eligibility today. Mark CanhaEduardo Escobar, and Mark Vientos round out the projected lineup. The two veterans are mix-in options with some upside for moderate power output at cheap prices and Vientos is a premium rookie who has not done much at the MLB level to this point in 49 plate appearances, he has one home run and a 33 WRC+ so far in his season.

Play: Cardinals bats/stacks, Mets bats/stacks in smaller portions

Update Notes: St. Louis has Gorman in the cleanup role behind the expected top three, Walker-Dylan Carlson-DeJong-Andrew Knizner-Edman follows. Carlson and Knizner are just as playable as most of the swappable parts in the Cardinals lineup. The Mets get a major upgrade from the return of Pete Alonso. The batting order runs Nimmo-Marte-Lindor-Alonso-Pham-Alvarez-McNeil-Escobar-Canha and gets a big bump in quality.

Detroit Tigers (+185/3.54) @ Minnesota Twins (-225/5.19)

The Tigers were shut out in a bullpen game yesterday and will face rookie right-handed starter Louie Varland in this matchup. In nine starts and 51.2 innings, Varland has managed a 22.9% strikeout rate with a 4.70 ERA and 3.96 xFIP, but he has given up a 5.50% home run rate on 10.5% barrels and a 90.1 mph exit velocity average. Varland has talent and his arsenal is well-regarded by the Stuff+ community, he is a play against the low-end Tigers at just $8,700/$8,500, warts and all. At the same time, a few value-based Detroit stacks would not be entirely out of the question, particularly with some of the left-handed options. The projected lineup opens with Zach McKinstry who has five home runs and 10 steals in 217 plate appearances while creating runs four percent better than average as one of the three regulars in this lineup who are above-average for run creation this year. Spencer Torkelson has a 98 WRC+ and has been threatening to get himself above average with some hard-hitting and a very strong walk rate to this point. Torkelson has shown signs of life, he has seven home runs and a 10.9% barrel rate with a 48.7% hard-hit rate. For $2,800/$2,800, there is value at first base in the second spot in the Detroit lineup when rostering Tigers. Kerry Carpenter has four home runs in 108 plate appearances as one of the team’s better hitters. Carpenter strikes the ball well on the left side, he has a 21.5% barrel rate in the small sample. Javier Baez has five home runs and five stolen bases and has been at least hitting the snooze button, if not waking up fully, at the plate over the past few days. Nick Maton is cheap at $2,600/$2,200, he has six home runs but is not a reliable hitter at .158/.286/.295 over 217 plate appearances. Andy IbanezMiguel Cabrera, and Jake Rogers are mix-in options of low-end quality, but Matt Vierling is potentially a little bit more than that. The right-handed outfielder costs $2,200/$2,400 despite hitting seven home runs in 198 plate appearances with a 46.2% hard-hit rate this year. Vierling has a .253 ISO and 106 WRC+ so far this year, he is a viable late-lineup inclusion when stacking Tigers and has even stolen four bases as a potentially functional wraparound play.

Garrett Hill will be on the mound for the Tigers. The righty costs $5,500 on both sites, he has thrown 11.2 innings out of the bullpen this season with an 8.49 ERA and 6.12 xFIP while striking out 18.6% and walking 16.9%. Hill was sent to AAA a few days ago to get stretched out at a starter after working primarily in long relief, but he seems unlikely to be ready to pitch more than three innings after spending just four days at that level. Hill is not an option on the mound, he should be targeted with Minnesota bats. The Twins projected lineup opens with Edouard Julien, who is slashing .272/.362/.494 with a 139 WRC+ over his first 95 plate appearances in the Show. The premium rookie is cheap at $3,000 on both sites and fills a valuable second base role with talent. Carlos Correa is cheap at $4,500/$3,200, he has continued to struggle for longer than may have been expected, but he still strikes the ball well with a 13.1% barrel rate and 41.1% hard hits that have amounted to nine hom runs and a .198 ISO. Byron Buxton is a star who is underpriced at $5,200/$3,200, he has 10 home runs on the season but is slashing .206/.308/.418. Alex Kirilloff has four home runs and has created runs 37% better than average over 140 opportunities, Donovan Solano is slashing .286/.378/.399 in 193 plate appearances while creating runs 23% better than average, and Royce Lewis has made a productive 57 plate appearances this season with two home runs but a 94 WRC+ in the tiny sample. Joey Gallo has 11 home runs and pounds the ball when he makes contact, he has an 8.62 in our home run model and makes for a good power option late in the lineup, if he happens to lead off today he will be an even stronger option. Christian Velazquez and Michael A. Taylor round out the lineup, Taylor remains one of our favorite sneaky low-owned home run options, he has 10 on the season but just a 3.63 in today’s home run model.

Play: Twins bats/stacks, Louie Varland, a few hedge Tigers stacks

Update Notes: the Tigers lineup is as anticipated. The Twins are without Buxton and will run with Julien-Willi Castro-Kirilloff-Correa-Max Kepler-Kyle Farmer-Gallo-Vazquez-Taylor

Los Angeles Angels (-118/4.97) @ Kansas City Royals (+109/4.64)

The Angels are leading today’s stacks board by projections and value and they sit second in the Power Index in their matchup against right-handed veteran Zack Greinke. The ancient righty is simply not as good as when he was pitching against replacement-level talent during WWII, or whenever it was that he was truly good. Greinke gets by on guile and has actually boosted his strikeout rate from 12.5% last year to 18.5% this season, but his 4.65 ERA and 4.03 xFIP tell a more complete tale and his 4.11% home run rate is targetable with Angels power bats. With all the strikeouts in the Los Angeles lineup there is a bit of upside potential for a sneaky Greinke play in this one, it is extremely but the righty is just a $7,500/$7,300 investment for a few shares, particularly on a weak SP2 day. The Angels side of the equation is strongly favored here, however. The projected Los Angeles lineup opens with Mickey Moniak who is slashing .309/.333/.642 with six home runs and two steals in just 84 plate appearances. The former first overall pick has earned a place atop this lineup and is in great position for correlated scoring. Shohei Ohtani has 23 home runs to lead the league so far this season, the monster two-way star has a .326 ISO and has created runs 73% better than average this season, which is why he costs $6,500/$4,500 and is totally worth it. Mike Trout is cheap at $3,700 and helps afford Ohtani on the blue site, on DraftKings he remains a big-ticket item at $6,100. Trout has 14 home runs and a .209 ISO but has been down in recent weeks and his triple-slash sits at just .252/.359/.461 for the season. The superstar is still creating runs 27% better than average and belongs in lineups. Brandon Drury had another big day at the plate, he now has 12 home runs and a .235 ISO while creating runs 18% better than average. Drury fills first and second base on both sites at a fair price, given all his power potential. Matt Thaiss is a capable catcher bat, particularly where the position is needed, Taylor Ward has nine home runs on the season but has been up and down throughout, and Jared Walsh has yet to hit his stride after missing the first third of the season. Luis Rengifo can make premium contact from time to time, Andrew Velazquez not so much.

Lefty Tyler Anderson will make the start for Los Angeles for $7,000/$7,400 and he is pulling a projection that falls into the “good enough” pile on a weak day for pitching. Anderson is boosted in projections by the Royals’ free-swinging nature, he has just a 15.5% strikeout rate for the season in 12 outings and 63.2 innings. The lefty has not been good this year, he has a 5.80 ERA and 5.86 xFIP but he induces a 10.7% swinging-strike rate and has been good at checking opposing power with just a 32.1% hard-hit rate and 86.8 mph of exit velocity. For a few shares, along the lines of a Greinke play on the other side, Anderson is not the craziest dart throw we have ever seen, but he should probably be cheaper to make it truly worth the effort. The Royals lineup is one that we have gone to in spots this season, but the concern in this matchup would be Anderson’s moderate acumen for limiting home runs, which is how Kansas City tends to find their value, they are not a great team for sequencing. Leadoff man Nick Pratto has a 33.3% strikeout rate over 183 plate appearances this year, though he has hit four home runs and posted a 122 WRC+ over the same sample. Pratto is in play at $3,300/$2,900, his price is a bargain in the leadoff role at first base or in the outfield. Sal Perez has a 10.6% barrel rate and 48.7% hard-hit rate this year with 14 home runs in the books, he is one of the top catchers in baseball when he has the bat in his hands. Perez is cheap at $5,500/$3,000. Bobby Witt Jr. has 11 homers and 21 stolen bases, those marks seem to be climbing on a daily basis, but Witt remains affordable at $5,700/$3,300, he is a better buy at shortstop on the FanDuel slate but should not be skipped when building stacks of Royals. MJ Melendez has six home runs with a .143 ISO and has been 19% below league average for run creation but we want to buy his contact profile again and again for these cheap prices. Melendez has a 12.3% barrel rate and 51.9% hard-hit rate this season. Maikel Garcia and Edward Olivares are playable parts in the lineup, their WRC+ marks are 83 and 105, Olivares has been the more productive of the two. The bottom of the lineup features one more truly playable part in Matt Duffy who fills second or third base on either site and cost just $2,300. Duffy is slashing .316/.375/.405 with a 118 WRC+ in his 88 plate appearances this year. Drew Waters and Dairon Blanco are low-end options to close out the lineup.

Play: Angels bats/stacks aggressively, minor shares of Royals top-end, very small doses of value pitching on either side as a large-field dart on a weak pitching day.

Update Notes: The Angels have Ward atop the lineup with Moniak out, Ward is followed by Ohtani-Trout-Drury-Hunter RenfroeChad WallachMichael Stefanic-Rengifo-Velazquez. Renfroe is a major power hitter, Wallach is a capable catcher, and Stefanic is a rookie infielder for the minimum. The Royals lineup has Matt Duffy leading off in a good spot, with Pratto taking the afternoon off. The lineup runs Witt-Perez-Garcia-Samad TaylorFreddy FerminNicky Lopez-Blanco-Drew Waters in an overall downgrade.

Pittsburgh Pirates (+140/3.86) @ Milwaukee Brewers (-153/4.75)

Typically seeing Freddy Peralta listed as a pitcher on a day like this would inspire faith, but the righty’s performance has our confidence at James Bond’s martini levels of shakiness. Peralta has thrown 70.1 innings in 13 starts this season, pitching to a 4.73 ERA and 4.16 xFIP with a 24.4% strikeout rate while also allowing a 4.23% home run rate on 9.9% barrels and a 37.6% hard-hit rate. Peralta has not been pitching like himself, he was better for strikeouts the past two years and far better for limiting runs and power, last season he had a 31.3% hard-hit rate with a 1.88% home run rate. Peralta has not been working deep into many ballgames and his issues are somewhat noteworthy, but the short slate has him firmly on the board in what should be at least an OK matchup against the Pirates. Peralta projects in the upper third of all pitchers in our model today and should be utilized at $9,700/$9,900, the best way to view his current-year struggles is through the prism of getting him cheap and probably less popular than he should be. The frisky Pirates lineup opens with Tucupita Marcano who has hit three home runs and stolen four bases this season while creating runs 10% below average. Bryan Reynolds has the same seven home runs and eight stolen bases he has had for the last month or so, his declining ISO now sits at .187 and his WRC+ has dropped to a still-good 119. Andrew McCutchen slots in third in the projected batting order but the veteran could get Sunday off in this one. The outfielder has hit nine home runs in an unexpected run of late-career quality and he costs just $4,400/$3,100. Carlos Santana hits from either side of the plate and has six home runs with a .146 ISO but has been better for power in years past. Jack Suwinski has 15 homers and an excellent 18.3% barrel rate with a 47% hard-hit rate this year. Suwinski is the best power hitter on this team by a fair margin, he has a 5.67 in our home run model today, Peralta’s track record for limiting pop is still present in his projections and what he does to the opposition’s upside, but the home run marks would have been lower a month ago. Josh PalaciosJi-Hwan Bae, and Jason Delay are mix-in options, Ke’Bryan Hayes has more talent than that but sits at just an 87 WRC+ over 277 plate appearances, but we continue to be pulled toward his 47.6% hard-hit rate like a Siren song when stacking Pirates.

Struggling rookie Luis Ortiz costs $6,300/$6,700 and is pushing value in Milwaukee’s direction. Ortiz has not been good to start his season, he has a 4.64 ERA and 5.24 xFIP with just a 13.2% strikeout rate while walking 11.3%. The rookie has allowed six home runs to 151 hitters, a 3.97% home run rate. The Brewers lineup is the better option between these two sides, even at the price Ortiz lacks upside in his current form. Christian Yelich has hit nine home runs and stolen 16 bases while creating runs 15% better than average this season, he is priced fairly at $5,400/$3,500 this afternoon. Yelich has a 10.4% barrel rate and 54.1% hard-hit rate and gets on base at a .361 clip, he is a very good player if not a star, but another MVP is well out of reach. Jesse Winker is back in the Brewers lineup, the lefty outfielder has a 3.85 in our home run model, he has not been good over the past two seasons but lefty power should play well against this pitcher and Winker is very cheap near the top of the lineup. Willy Adames has 10 home runs and a .167 ISO and missed action with an injury recently. The power-hitting shortstop is a buy at $4,400/$2,900 in this matchup. Rowdy Tellez has a team-leading 8.24 in our home run model, he has hit 12 long balls this season and has created runs two percent below the curve to this point, but there is excellent potential for a good MLB DFS score for the lefty at just $4,400/$2,700. William Contreras and Luis Urias have right-handed punch at the plate for $4,800/$2,800 and $3,400/$2,400. Urias for the $2,400 on FanDuel makes an excellent option, he fills shortstop, second base, or third base on the site and has one home run in his 40 plate appearances this season since returning from injury. Brian Anderson and Owen Miller have produced well this season, though most of Anderson’s numbers came in the first month or so and he now sits at a 97 WRC+. Joey Wiemer has also been productive for counting stats, he has 10 home runs and 10 stolen bases, mostly from the 7-9 spots in the lineup, though his .215/.286/.416 triple-slash could use some work.

Play: Freddy Peralta, Brewers bats/stacks, hedge shares of Pirates bats

Update Notes: the Brewers will have Raimel Tapia hitting seventh because he’s apparently on their team now. Tapia is a moderate power-speed option who rarely provides either.

Cincinnati Reds (+125/4.22) @ Houston Astros (-136/4.88)

Astros righty Ronel Blanco will be making his third start, he has a 3.86 ERA and 5.02 xFIP with a 24.1% strikeout rate over 23.1 innings total this season. Blanco started the season in the bullpen and then stretched out for full starts, he went 5.1 in his first outing, striking out five and walking three while allowing a home run and two earned runs on seven total hits against the Angels. His second outing was a five-strikeout four-walk affair over six innings, Blanco allowed two earned runs on two solo home runs but only yielded three hits overall. With the idea of full depth and some strikeout acumen, Blanco is on the board and projects reasonably well against the Reds for just $5,500/$6,300, making him the bargain bin pitcher of the day and a top SP2 value option. The Reds lineup includes TJ Friedl on top, he has a 121 WRC+ with eight stolen bases while slashing .307/.366/.470 so far this year. Friedl has moderate power and good speed, he fits well in the leadoff role ahead of the team’s young talent. Jonathan India typically hits third behind emerging star Matt McLain, who has hit thre home runs and created runs 38% better than average in his first 142 plate appearances. McLain leads the team with an 8.01 in our home run model and can also set the table for India and the rest of the lineup with his .380 on-base percentage in the small sample. India has nine home runs and 12 stolen bases on the season, he costs just $4,900/$3,600 at second base and is a good option if stacking Reds hitters. Elly De La Cruz has a 7.50 in our home run model, he has hit one home run and swiped six bases in his 45 plate appearances in the Show to this point. Spencer Steer is slashing .278/.360/.468 with a 119 WRC+ and .190 ISO, yet he costs just $4,400/$3,300. Tyler Stephenson is a playable catcher on the low end, Will BensonNick Senzel, and Stuart Fairchild provide believable quality in the OK to use as mix-in options sense, but none of the group deliver on a regular basis. Senzel is the most interesting, given his former prospect pedigree, but not much of that ever arrived in MLB.

Righty Luke Weaver is a pitcher we have examined in this space recently with the notion that maybe he is not as bad as his reputation. We were rewarded first with a 3.2-inning start in which he allowed seven runs and struck out four against the Dodgers followed by a 4.2-inning start in which he struck out three, walked four, and allowed three runs. So, maybe he is as bad as his reputation. Weaver has a 21.5% strikeout rate and 4.45 xFIP over 10 starts and 52 innings this season and he has given up a laughable 5.26% home run rate on 10.5% barrels and a 42.6% hard-hit rate. The Astros lineup has been somewhat limited, they have four players pulling strong projections on today’s slate but also a mix of low-end players who are not strongly projected, which has a limiting impact on their aggregate number on our stacks board. Mauricio Dubon is on the lower-end of that spectrum, he has created runs two percent below average and is moderately useful player who is miscast in the leadoff role. Jose Altuve is a star at second base, he has three home runs and four stolen bases in his first 91 plate appearances this season and is cheap at $4,800/$3,900. Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker are both having somewhat down seasons, but they can both produce in the right spots and should be relied upon for a turnaround over time, Tucker in particular. Both players have nine home runs this season, Bregman costs $4,700/$3,100 and Tucker $5,300/$3,400. Jose Abreu and Jeremy Pena have WRC+ marks of 68 and 99 on the season so far, Abreu has been rocketing up the board in recent days, he has four total home runs and is perhaps coming out of an extended funk at the plate while costing just $3,300/$2,800. Pena is a cheap shortstop with a bit of power and speed potential, but he has not been regularly productive this season. Chas McCormick has six home runs and six stolen bases as one of our favored value plays late in the Astros lineup. Jake Meyers and Martin Maldonado round out the batting order in typical form.

Play: Ronel Blanco value, Astros bats/stacks, Reds bats in smaller shares

Update Notes: both lineups look as projected.

Toronto Blue Jays (+111/4.13) @ Texas Rangers (-120/4.46)

The final game of the slate is a doozy with a battle between the Blue Jays and Rangers and two potentially viable pitchers taking the mound. Righty Jon Gray is probably the better of the two pitchers in this game, he has the Blue Jays in check to just 4.13 implied runs in Vegas and he has pitched to a 2.32 ERA and 4.27 xFIP over 12 starts and 73.2 innings. Gray has a 22.3% strikeout rate with a 7.1% walk rate and just a 0.96 WHIP while generating a 12.9% swinging-strike rate and limiting hard hits to just 33.8%. The effective righty costs $10,100/$10,400 as one of the better options on a weak day for pitching, but the matchup suppresses his projection to minor degrees. The Blue Jays projected lineup sees a wrinkle with Whit Merrifield in between George Springer and Bo Bichette, with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. dropping to the cleanup spot. Springer has 10 home runs and 10 stolen bases and strikes out just 15.6% of the time with a 10.1% barrel rate, more power and run creation is coming. Merrifield is good at getting on base, has a strong hit tool, and has racked up 18 stolen bases this season, this is a smart spot for him in the lineup and he should be a good option for correlated scoring with a dash of individual potential. Bichette has been the team’s best player, he has a 137 WRC+ with 14 home runs in 321 plate appearances. Guerrero is sitting 22% better than average for run creation but his power output remains limited. Despite a 13.5% barrel rate and 57% hard hits, the star first baseman has just nine home runs and a .153 ISO. His price is way down at $5,200/$3,300 at first base, take the discount and be thankful, Guerrero remains an elite hitter. Daulton Varsho and Matt Chapman are a power-packed lefty-righty combo in the heart of the lineup, Varsho has 12 home runs and has come on over the past few weeks after a very slow start, Chapman’s season has been the opposite, he has nine home runs after cooling following a scorching start. Alejandro KirkDanny Jansen, and Kevin Kiermaier are all viable mix-in options late in the lineup.

The Rangers elite offense is facing roller coaster veteran Chris Bassitt who tends to either pitch deep into a game with a quality start or get absolutely obliterated early like he did in his most recent outing. Bassitt lasted just three innings, giving up eight runs on 11 hits to 21 hitters with three home runs allowed against the Orioles in Baltimore earlier this week, he needs to dramatically step up quality for this one. Outside of three disaster starts, Bassitt has been fairly effective this year, he has several starts of seven or eight innings and a complete game in his ledger for the year. The righty has a 21.4% strikeout rate and 4.43 xFIP over 85 innings in 14 starts, on the idea of depth and clean innings, Bassitt is playable at $9,200/$9,600, but the play should be made with eyes open to the inherent risk, Bassitt has lost his “reliable righty” mantle for now. The Rangers lineup includes stud infielders Marcus Semien and Corey Seager up top, the duo has combined for 20 home runs, with 10 each. The expensive pair’s pricing can be offset by including Nathaniel Lowe at first base for just $4,000/$3,200, Lowe has eight home runs and a 122 WRC+ and was very good last season as well, he should be more expensive and popular in this lineup but he rarely is. Adolis Garcia is a star with 15 home runs and a 122 WRC+, Josh Jung is a breakout young player with 14 homers and a 131 WRC+ that leads the team among players not named Semien or Seager, and Jonah Heim is a high-end catcher play with power. That title also goes to Mitch Garver, the best configuration of this lineup for DFS purposes is when both of those players are in alongside productive toolsy utility man Ezequiel Duran, who fills multiple positions with quality. Leody Taveras has a 130 WRC+ with seven home runs and seven stolen bases in a nice first half, he remains cheap and playable as a wraparound option.

Play: four corners: Jon Gray, Rangers bats/stacks, Chris Bassitt, Blue Jays bats stacks, in that order and in a fair number of shares on any one or multiple points.

Update Notes: The Rangers lineup includes Heim, Garver, and Duran as we were hoping for.

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