MLB DFS Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings – 4/19/17

Welcome to another edition of ResearchFantasy’s MLB Breakdown. These picks are what I consider to be the best play of the day, relative to their price. One of the most important things we must consider in daily fantasy is how many points a player gets per dollar. It helps us identify value plays to pair with studs that we know will produce in order to maximize our potential points in lineups. I also try to identify plays that can be used in either cash games or tournaments. Typically, when I build my cash games, I am looking for players that have the best floor combined with good upside. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please let us know!

Prices listed are FantasyDraft/FanDuel/DraftKings


Madison Bumgarner (22800/11100/11700) – If we thought Tuesday was full of pitching options then I don’t know what to say about Thursday. We have both Kershaw and Bumgarner on the same slate, which doesn’t happen a ton. On this night, I will give the edge to Bumgarner. I think the Royals look awful when you put a lefty on the mound, and as a result, Bumgarner should have a great game tonight. It’s not that I dislike Kershaw – I just like MadBum more.

Chris Archer (18900/9300/9700) – Archer just hasn’t put together one of those dominant games yet this year, but it’s coming. This definitely ends up looking like an awful matchup on paper, but I’m willing to go that route in tournaments. I’m just not 100% sold on what the Tigers are doing right now, and with them being on the road, I’ll give the edge to Archer. I think the mentality will be to spend up on Kershaw or Bumgarner or spend down, so Archer could be the odd man out.

Vincent Velasquez (18000/7800/9400) – All things considered, the Mets just aren’t great. Yes, we get intimidated time to time when a righty faces them because of the fact they have so many lefty bats, but if your stuff is on, they can be beat. I don’t think I’m considering Velasquez in my cash games, but I think he does have some upside in tournaments with players thinking it’s better to spend down or up at the position or that the Mets bats are the way to go.


Buster Posey (7800/3900/4000) – This is going to be an interesting situation. Jason Vargas is on the mound and off to a great start to the year. I don’t know why, but I hate using Buster Posey, and there isn’t a great chance I have much with Kershaw and Bumgarner on the mound tonight. If Vargas stays hot, then Posey is going to be a waste of money. The way things line up, though, statistically say that Posey could get over on him tonight and makes a nice option.

Yan Gomes (6000/2200/3000) – Adalberto Meija is going to be in over his head against the Tribe tonight, and even though Gomes hasn’t been great thus far, I’m willing to give him a shot tonight. The price isn’t going to kill you in any format, and you’ll need to save up somewhere to get the top pitching options in your lineups.


Hanley Ramirez (8100/3400/4100) – Thus far this year Francisco Liriano has looked both great and awful. That’s always a great thing to say about the opposing pitcher. We know he has “the stuff”, but it’s the same stuff that breaks down and kills your lineup when he’s in it. Ramirez is excellent against left-handed pitching, and he’s someone that I want in my lineup as well tonight.

Logan Morrison (6300/2100/3200) – Jordan Zimmerman isn’t the pitcher he once was, but he also isn’t someone I’m jumping from the rafters to attack. Morrison is someone that will fly under the radar tonight, and every night really. He’s got tons of upside though if he can connect with a stray pitch. I like the idea of taking him as a low owned punt who, if he pans out, really differentiates your lineups big times.


Jose Peraza (7500/3100/3800) – Peraza and the Reds are off to a red hot start to the season, at least in terms of DFS. His price is still too low for what he’s putting out there. Tonight, the Orioles will put Ubaldo Jiminez on the mound. The stats say play all the Reds, but the law of baseball dictates that there is a high percent chance that Jiminez pitchers a no hitter because baseball. With the Reds being the likely trendy stack tonight, I’m immediately tempted to look elsewhere. The stats say he’s a good play, though. Blame them when this blows up.

Logan Forsythe (7200/3400/3600) – The Dodgers just seem to be getting the wrong end of lefty pitchers over the last few games, and they typically just don’t perform overly well. I think that Tyler Anderson is far more hittable than some of the others they’ve faced, though, so I think some exposure to the Dodger righties is worth it. Forsythe is off to a good, but not great, start to the season, but has yet to send one deep. My gut call is that ends tonight.


Jake Lamb (7600/3900/3900) – Jake Lamb is probably my favorite play on this slate. I don’t care what happens in Tuesday night’s game in terms of if the Diamondbacks don’t do well. Jhoulys Chacin is just not a good pitcher and I don’t care if they played in a stadium with 500 foot walls, I’d still play Lamb tonight. He’s off to a great start and makes a ton of sense considering his price is still low.

Miguel Sano (8000/3400/4100) – Sano has slowed his roll some since a scorching hot start to the season, but he gets a pitcher tonight in Trevor Bauer who may or may not end up producing a solid outing. Bauer is another young, frustrating player, and while he can put up some big games, he can also get throttled. Sano is going to go deep again soon and it very well could be tonight.


Zack Cozart (6900/3100/3500) – Regardless of the fact that I’m scared of getting burned for the, well, every single day since the start of the season by the trendy top team, I think I’m in on Cozart. He’s hitting the ball too well, and his upside is too high to pass on him tonight. I think with the price and everything that goes into it, he’ll be pretty high owned, but he should be worth it against Ubaldo.

Dansby Swanson (6300/2700/3200) – Swanson just shows how little I like the position tonight. He certainly hasn’t been very good to start the year, but I think Joe Ross might be in for a bit of a downer coming back against this Braves team. I think Swanson could put together a good enough stat line to be worth the price.


George Springer (9300/4100/4700) – Springer is on fire this year, and getting a matchup against J.C. Ramirez is likely to keep that going. Sure, he might take him deep, but there is enough to his game that even if that doesn’t happen, he should still be able to put together a nice game.

Robbie Grossman (7200/3100/3600) – Grossman will probably go overlooked tonight, but he really shouldn’t. He’s a good part of this team, and he’s too cheap to not be considered. I have not fully decided wether or not I want to stack against Bauer or play him, but I’m leaning toward having some ownership of Grossman regardless.

Mookie Betts (9300/4200/4800) – If I would have thought of this first, I probably would have put Chris Young here. That’s why he’s a Red Sox [Sock?]: he hits lefties. I’ll be fine with taking Mookie Betts, though, who should be in a good position to do just the same. He’s expensive, but the upside is there for tournaments.

David Peralta (7200/3100/3600) – Peralta, like Lamb, is just far too cheap tonight. I have no faith that Jhoulys Chacin will not get rocked here. He may make this feel like Coors. I don’t care that this is a pitcher’s park. Also, this is the pitcher’s park of the Padres. Want to know why it ranks so low each year? THE PADRES PLAY HERE.

Melky Cabrera (7800/3100/3900) –Cabrera really feels like the odd play out tonight, but it is what it is. Each game, the White Sox have done some kind of damage, and I really don’t think tonight will be any different. The upside for Cabrera is a double-digit fantasy game. Tanaka has given up at least 3 runs in every game this year, and I see him doing that again tonight.

Slate Strategy

For me, I’m just going to be overloaded on Madison Bumgarner. I think that he may see lower ownership with Kershaw on the slate. Then again, players might just take the cost savings with Bumgarner. There are so many things that could affect the ownership of both of them tonight. I really don’t care what happens. I’m content with just playing MadBum and finding ways to differentiate myself in other spots.

To be sure, I love the Diamondbacks again tonight. The game hasn’t started yet, so who knows how my love for them ends up on Tuesday. I think the Reds are a team I’m going to either overload on or stay away from altogether. For the most part, the team that has been in the best position each night has crashed and burned, so there is a lot of incentive to go to another spot, of which there are plenty.

Baseball is weird. It takes a ton of time to research and then a lot of the time you are disappointed. There is no question that it is my least favorite fantasy sport. With golf and NASCAR in the mix now, my summers will be much different, at least 4 days of the week. I am really working hard to get better. This has little to do with the picks, because they are well researched. It has everything to do with the execution. If you feel like you’re struggling this year, and maybe in years past, don’t hesitate to drop a comment. I love to talk though strategy to try to become a better MLB DFS fantasy player.

Top Stacks

Arizona Diamondbacks [Lamb/Peralta/Goldschmidt/Hazelbaker]

Baltimore Orioles [Machado/Mancini/Trumbo/Schoop/Castillo]

Boston Red Sox [Bogaerts/Ramirez/Betts/Young]


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