Speaking from personal preference, Sundays are the worst days for DFS. All of the games are in the afternoon and lineups come out at pretty bad times. Players will get days off for a day game after a night game and everything just seems to be a little bit off. Regardless, all 30 teams are in action, so there are a lot of possibilities in play for the daily fantasy contests of your choosing. Sample sizes are going to have about two weeks worth of data now, so we’re inching closer to some points of significance and stabilization. We’re not there yet, but it’s coming.
Remember that our column here at BangTheBook is centered exclusively on finding value. You know who the good players are. So does everybody else. It’s those under-the-radar guys that you pair with those high-salary players that allow you to come out on top.
DraftKings or FanDuel are the industry leaders in ease of use and safe, free transactions. Use these tips and the tips from our daily radio show to improve your abilities and fill out the winning lineup. Our MLB daily fantasy tips and suggestions article is different in that we’re not looking for the top scorers, but for the best values so that you can get the edge that you need in order to save money for the game’s best players.
The salaries listed are from DraftKings:
Here are the top teams to stack for April 17:
St. Louis Cardinals – Jon Moscot makes his 2016 debut against a Cardinals offense that is swinging the bats pretty well right about now. Moscot was dealing with an intercostal strain and it’s a bad time of year to have one of those. Any time is a bad time, but it’s hard to go through Spring Training and all the things it takes to build up your arm and then to have to sit for a while. In Moscot’s 11.2 career MLB innings, he’s given up six runs on 11 hits. His minor league numbers don’t inspire confidence, with a low K rate at the upper levels and marginal control. At the very least, St. Louis will put a lot of balls in play.
Washington – Charlie Morton had his “blind squirrel theory” moment against the awful San Diego Padres last week. He draws a tough Washington lineup on Sunday. Morton is a guy that makes sense to fade whenever possible because his extreme ground ball split was aided by Pittsburgh’s defensive shifting. Philadelphia does not have the same type of infield defense and they don’t do as much shifting as the Pirates. Morton also showed lackluster command last season and poor command at Citizens Bank Park is less forgiving than it was at PNC Park.
Detroit – This didn’t work out all that well on Saturday, but it’s worth another try on Sunday. Mike Fiers is a guy that I’m looking to fade in the American League. He’s going to struggle having to deal with an extra hitter and his command and control profiles don’t line up with pitching in the Junior Circuit. It’s not the biggest sample size, but Fiers’s FIP is a full run higher in the AL than it was in the NL and his K/BB ratio has fallen off, as you would expect with the DH.
Here are the top value hitters for April 17:
Ryan Raburn ($2,900) – Platoon batter extraordinaire Ryan Raburn has a favorable matchup on Sunday afternoon against Jon Lester. Over the course of his career, Raburn owns a .265/.339/.490 slash against left-handed pitching. Since’s he’s pretty much become exclusively a platoon guy, the numbers have really gone up. Last season, Raburn owned a .325/.415/.589 slash against lefties, which was 73 percent above league average and he had a .423 wOBA. Jon Lester is a good one, but this is where Raburn earns his money.
Roberto Perez ($3,000) – Any time you can save money on a catcher, that’s a route that you want to go. With an early start, Roberto Perez should draw the assignment behind the plate for the Indians against Steven Matz. Perez, in a small sample, made the most of his PA against LHP last season with a .265/.413/.429 slash. One thing you can guarantee from Perez is that he’s going to have good plate appearances. He has an elite walk rate, especially for a player that doesn’t see a ton of time. Against Matz, who had some issues in his first start, Perez is a good, cheap streaming option and probably the best among the backup catchers that will play tomorrow.
Desmond Jennings ($3,100) – This is an excellent value for a player that draws a good platoon advantage on Sunday. Desmond Jennings has a .271/.355/.444 slash against lefties in his career and that’s good for 27 percent above league average. A team like Tampa Bay that pays a lot of attention to platoon advantages should bat Jennings in a good spot in the lineup and this is a great value for a player that performs well in these situations.
Here are the top value pitchers for April 17:
Kris Medlen ($6,900) – Kris Medlen is a nice streaming option at this price on Sunday. The big thing about his first start is that his velocity reports were really encouraging. The stuff was sharp, though a bit erratic, with seven strikeouts over five innings. In a big, spacious yard like O.co Coliseum, Medlen should be able to pitch to his defense and mix in some strikeouts as well.
Matt Moore ($7,900) – Matt Moore passed the eye test for me this past week against the Indians. He went pitch-for-pitch with Corey Kluber and the fastball looked pretty explosive sitting 93-94. Prior to Tommy John surgery, Moore was an up-and-comer in the American League and a lot of people felt that he had a really high ceiling. Something I like to focus on early in the season is to look for guys that were able to train for a season rather than rehab over the offseason. Moore is one of those guys and there could be big things coming for him this season.
Michael Wacha ($8,000) – Michael Wacha saw some strikeout gains in the middle of last season and those were a sight for sore eyes. This season, Wacha has 10 punchouts in 10.1 innings to kick things off. If he’s going to have swing and miss stuff right from the jump, he’s going to be in line for a really outstanding season. The command has been a bit iffy at times through two starts, but he’s got a pretty deep arsenal and the Reds aren’t a lineup to fear. It’s not an accident that Wacha has a 3.22/3.44/3.70 pitcher slash over 363.1 career innings.