MLB DFS Picks and Pivots:
Welcome back to everyone with another FanDuel MLB DFS Picks and Pivots where we kill some quarantine downtime by diving into the MLB DFS simulations that FanDuel is offering each and every day.
Unlike some of the other simulations we have seen during this time, these FanDuel simulations for MLB have a bit more structure and FanDuel has broken it all down for us here but the basics are as follows:
1. Starting pitchers and batting orders have already been set with no pinch-hitting, so all hitters will get a full game of at-bats.
2. Each plate appearance is simulated by numberFire and accounts for things such as park factors, platoon splits of Home/Road or Righty/Lefty and individual skill and match-up.
3. A pitcher’s volume will be based on “dynamic pitch counts” which means you are likely taking on added unknown risk for arms that did not have defined starting roles in 2019.
What have we seen so far?
Sunday’s slate was by far the highest-scoring we have seen thus far with winning GPP scores over 280 points on FanDuel on a slate that was driven largely by the offense as the arms on this slate were largely underwhelming priority rosters.
Now that does not mean the arms were not critical, quite the opposite in fact, as we had three arms – Zach Eflin, Drew Smyly and Kendall Graveman all go for 50+ fantasy points as we all expected. Some interesting takeaways – we wondered how NumberFire would treat arms like Carlos Martinez, who spent last year in the bullpen in their “dynamic pitch count” and it seemed not to matter at all as he fired 7 innings against Baltimore.
The key was the offense and for the first time, we saw some stacks really drive scores up as the White Sox (13 runs) and the Padres (14 runs in Coors) were key building blocks while a one-off Paul Goldschmidt, who dropped 60 FD points was the must have GPP play with his 3 HR day!
Today’s MLB DFS Slate:
We get a split slate Monday with two slates and 10 lineups to rock for free on FanDuel and more data points to sort through as we figure out the best way to attack these simulations. For today’s article, I want to spend some time on the early slate as it has some interesting tournament aspects.
On the early slate, it becomes very difficult to overlook Mike Clevinger and Jose Berrios as priority spends on just a four-game slate as they have the highest K ceilings of any arms available to us. However, I think considering the size of the slate and the fact that this is a 150,000 entry field (assuming it fills), the ownership on these two arms will end up being massive and pivoting off them could end up giving us the edge we need to make any meaningful dent in this field.
While Clevinger’s talent is elite, this Twins line-up is flat out loaded from top to bottom and stacking them at home could be a low-owned leverage difference maker here this afternoon. For what it is worth, Clevinger’s ERA on the road was nearly 2 points higher than it was at home and so with this game being in Minnesota, could the Home/Roads splits in NumberFire’s projections end up giving the Twins hitters the slight edge they need to put a hurting on a chalky SP1? Kepler, Polanco, Cruz, Donaldson, Rosario and Sano gives you a power heavy 1-6 that you can mix and match as a stack against Clevinger and if it hits, you will have a massive advantage over the field.
Is it risky? Sure, but we aren’t playing to “min-cash” and tie with 1,000 other people to split $0.25 of FanDuel Bonus Cash – it costs you NOTHING to play these so think strategy and be bold.
Now take it a step further, if everyone pays up for Clevinger/Berrios then it will be hard to pay up for bats so double-down on this strategy and load up on expensive bats like the Yankees who will be hard to jam in with either SP1 and take the approach on this slate of fading the arms and building around the hitters.
All that means you need to dumpster dive a bit at pitcher but these recent simulations are showing that it is a viable strategy- I mean Drew Freakin Smyly dropped a 50 burger against the Dodgers yesterday. So can we opt to move down to Wade Miley ($6.8K) against the Brewers – who could be another leverage play as I expect most who go to this level will take a chance on someone like Jordan Montgomery against the Orioles?
Look back at yesterday’s slate – Zach Eflin faced this very same Brewers squad, striking out 8 in 8.1 IP on his way to 59 fantasy points so can we start to “game log” watch in these simulations and find lineups that may be prone to poor performances in this virtual world? Considering the bats you can get with a cheap SP like Miley – I think it is 100% worth the risk – what do you have to lose….$0?
Four games MLB DFS slates for GPP become far more about strategy and considering these are free simulations – I think we have to be willing to take the strategy route here than simply “clicking the best plays.”
Enjoy the slates today guys and let’s keep finding ways to attack these simulations as we wait on real sports to come back into our lives!