This article will outline the best daily fantasy MLB plays of the day at every position. We’ll take a comprehensive look across the DFS industry to uncover these core recommendations, factoring respective salaries into the analysis.
Please note, these player picks were organized early in the day. For MLB contests, always check lineups and weather closer to game time. Rain, wind, or unexpected managerial decisions could open up additional sources of value. Be sure to keep an eye on the MLB Headlines and Injuries desk.
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We will be looking at the nine-game main afternoon slate starting at 1:05 ET.
Jake Odorizzi - Minnesota (vs. Kansas City)
Some people may view this recommendation as an unnecessary risk, especially with ace pitchers like Justin Verlander and Shane Bieber in the player pool. However, I’m willing to take a chance on Odorizzi and his cheap salary while stacking top-dollar hitters throughout my lineup. Odorizzi was fantastic through the first two months of the season, holding the American League’s best ERA for a good portion of that. He has hit a wall over the past six weeks, but the Twins’ righty bounced-back for a strong showing at Miami (5.2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 5 K) earlier this week. Maybe that helped repair some of his confidence moving forward. Odorizzi steps in as a huge -220 moneyline favorite against a Kansas City team that ranks 25th in wRC+ on the season … If this is too much of a risk for your liking, Bieber is my favorite of the high-end pitchers.
CATCHER / FIRST BASE
Yuli Gurriel - Houston (vs. Seattle)
The Astros are a dangerous team right now, as they have dominated this series against the Mariners by a score of 19-2 through the first two games. They’ll have a chance to keep beating up on their divisional foe, as the Astros’ righty-heavy lineup will step in against Seattle LHP Tommy Milone’s generous .347 wOBA split to right-handed bats. Gurriel should see plenty of RBI opportunities within this All-Star lineup, and he’s an excellent “per dollar” lift on this afternoon slate.
Jason Kipnis - Cleveland (vs. LA Angels)
Kipnis is feeling it right now, collecting seven hits, three homers, and 10 RBIs over his last six games. He’ll continue to see plenty of RBI chances in this beefed-up Cleveland lineup, and taking hacks in Progressive Field (kind to left-handed power) helps his cause. The matchup looks good too, facing Angels’ starting pitcher Jaime Barria and his inflated 6.28 ERA on the season.
Alex Bregman - Houston (vs. Seattle)
You could build an all-out Houston stack this afternoon for cash games and tournaments alike. That’s not a bad strategy, and taking Odorizzi at pitcher could release enough cap space to make it work. Regardless, Bregman is at the focal point of the Astros offense as a premium “a la carte” play if you aren’t stacking H-Town hitters. The Houston third baseman has a fantastic matchup against LHP Milone’s .347 wOBA split to right-handed bats.
Tim Anderson - Chicago White Sox (at Philadelphia)
Go ahead and climb the salary ladder with Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor, or Jorge Polanco (listed in order of preference) if you have the necessary funds to do so. However, keep in mind that Anderson makes for a nice bargain pivot while enjoying the platoon advantage over Philadelphia LHP Drew Smyly’s .377 wOBA split to right-handed bats. The hitter-friendly atmosphere of Citizens Bank Park helps too.
Nelson Cruz - Minnesota (vs. Kansas City)
Cruz is probably the best overall hitter on this slate, and he’s priced accordingly on most DFS sites. Don’t roster him if it compromises the rest of your lineup, but (as mentioned earlier) taking Odorizzi at pitcher should make it easier to snag a premium option or two. Cruz certainly fits the bill, as he’s piling up the power numbers with six hits, two doubles, four homers, and 10 RBIs through the first two games of this series. I’m expecting the Twins to keep scoring runs against Kansas City RHP Brad Keller and a subpar Royals’ bullpen. Cruz should be a centerpiece within that.
Jeff McNeil - NY Mets (at Pittsburgh)
McNeil is a quality mid-range pick who is viable through all formats. The park factor at Pittsburgh isn’t great, but McNeil is a contact hitter who doesn’t need to slap it over the fence to score fantasy points. The matchup looks good against the struggling likes of Pirates’ RHP Joe Musgrove and his .340 wOBA split to left-handed bats.