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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Targets, Values for April 19

Garion Thorne gives his top studs and value plays for Wednesday’s fantasy baseball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 1:10 p.m. ET.

Atlanta Braves v St. Louis Cardinals Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images

About five minutes ago I looked at Wednesday’s MLB schedule and realized that we had a 10-game afternoon slate. So, with great remorse, I crawled out of bed and dragged myself to my laptop. I know I live a privileged life when 1:00 p.m. ET baseball is my biggest issue, but I was really close to falling asleep. Like, really close. I had a nice cool pillow and everything.

Anyway, if I’m incoherent, I deeply apologize. Let’s break it all down position-by-position.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $222K Relay Throw [$50K to 1st]


For up-to-the-minute news, analysis and lineups, download the DK Live app. You also can follow DK Live on Twitter @dklive.


PITCHER

Stud

Justin Steele, Chicago Cubs at Oakland Athletics, $9,700 - This is a tough crop of pitchers. As such, there’s no reason to get too complex at the top. The Athletics entered play on Tuesday ranking 26th in baseball in ISO (.127) and 27th in wOBA (.300). Ramon Laureano ($4,300; hamstring) is banged up and Seth Brown (oblique) is on the IL. There’s just not a lot to get excited about on this roster. That’s great news for Steele, who currently pairs an above-average 26.4% strikeout rate with an 88th percentile opponent average exit velocity (85.4). The lefty shut down the Dodgers across seven innings in his last outing. By comparison, Oakland should be a piece of cake.

Value

Alex Cobb, San Francisco Giants at Miami Marlins, $7,700 - It seems like there’s two clear options below $8K on this slate: Cobb and Martin Perez ($7,400). To me, Perez has the better matchup, but Cobb possesses the higher ceiling, so I’d prefer to focus on the latter. Cobb was roughed up in his last outing, yet he’s done a lot of things well in 2023. To wit, the veteran is throwing harder than ever before while suppressing opponent launch angle with an elite 61.7% ground ball rate. Cobb’s 7.00 K/BB ratio doesn’t hurt, either. In a word, he’s solid — and solid should be enough against the Marlins. Miami owns an 88 wRC+ and the league’s seventh-highest strikeout rate (24.2%). That’ll play.


INFIELD

Stud

Paul Goldschmidt, St. Louis Cardinals vs. Arizona Diamondbacks, $5,800 - Goldschmidt and the Cardinals have had limited opportunity to hit against LHPs so far this season, but if anyone needs reminding, the reigning NL MVP hit .411 with a 266 wRC+ off southpaws in 2022. That’s pretty damn good. The lefty in question on Wednesday? An extremely washed Madison Bumgarner ($7,600). The veteran owns an 8.56 xERA across 13.2 innings in 2023. He has more walks (11) than strikeouts (8). Needless to say, Goldschmidt should tee-off in this matchup.

Stud

Ke’Bryan Hayes, Pittsburgh Pirates at Colorado Rockies, $4,300 - Hayes hasn’t looked completely comfortable at the plate since 2020, but he’s been far better than his surface numbers suggest in 2023. While Hayes posted just a .268 wOBA over his first 69 plate appearances of the season, his .345 expected wOBA was far better thanks to an enticing 47.4% hard hit rate. For his career, he’s also been at his best against LHPs, with a 117 wRC+ within the split. Austin Gomber ($5,700) is left-handed. Austin Gomber has an 8.16 ERA. Austin Gomber has pitch at Coors Field on Wednesday.

Value

Bryson Stott, Philadelphia Phillies at Chicago White Sox, $3,800 - Stott’s impressive hitting streak came to end in Game 2 of a doubleheader on Tuesday, so he’ll just have to start another on Wednesday against Mike Clevinger ($7,900). It shouldn’t be too difficult, as LHBs have caused havoc for the RHP in 2023. In fact, Clevinger’s allowing a robust .455 expected wOBA to opposing lefties this season — one of the highest marks in baseball. Add in Stott’s position as the Phillies’ leadoff man, and he’s simply too cheap.

Value

Christian Walker, Arizona Diamondbacks at St. Louis Cardinals, $3,500 - Walker has been underwhelming to start 2023, though a pair of multi-hit performances in his past three games is encouraging. Also, let’s not forget that Walker smashed 36 home runs last season. He has legitimate power upside that’s rare this far below $4K. Facing Walker will be Jake Woodford ($5,500), a man in possession of an ugly 7.95 xERA. Woodford’s seen 32 RHBs across his three starts. Those righties have combined for an .815 slugging percentage. Yikes.


OUTFIELD

Stud

Kyle Schwarber, Philadelphia Phillies at Chicago White Sox, $6,000 - This just feels like a day where Schwarber is going yard. Clevinger might technically be sporting a 2.20 ERA, but a 5.96 xERA tells a much different story, as does a GB/FB ratio of only 0.52. It’s insane the RHP hasn’t allowed a home run yet in 2023, particularly with how much contact left-handed hitters are making against Clevinger through three starts. Regression is on the horizon.

Stud

Brandon Nimmo, New York Mets at Los Angeles Dodgers, $4,500 - I will say that Noah Syndergaard ($6,500) has been a little unlucky so far in 2023 — an 8.50 K/BB ratio is pretty encouraging — but LHBs have given him fits. In fact, LHBs have combined to hit .300 with a .395 wOBA off the man they used to call Thor. Not great. Nimmo has been fantastic in his own right, too. Over 72 plate appearances, the 30-year-old possesses a .472 OBP with a 155 wRC+. The power hasn’t been there yet, but this still feels like a discounted price for the Mets’ leadoff man.

Value

Connor Joe, Pittsburgh Pirates at Colorado Rockies, $3,800 - Joe has looked amazing in a Pirates uniform, slashing .310/.396/.571 over his first 45 plate appearances of the season. That includes a 196 wRC+ in his 18 PAs against specifically LHPs. With Gomber struggling and Joe expected to hit fifth on Wednesday at Coors Field, there’s a lot to like about him as a DFS asset.

Value

Cody Bellinger, Chicago Cubs at Oakland Athletics, $3,500 - I don’t want to overlook Mason Miller ($4,000), who will make his MLB debut on Wednesday for the Athletics. The dude can touch 100mph and in his lone Triple-A start of the season, he threw five no-hit innings and struck out 11 of the 16 batters he faced. Still, he’s never pitched in the big leagues before and, to be blunt, Bellinger is severely undervalued at the moment. The former NL MVP is hitting .302 with a 126 wRC+ and a microscopic 14.3% strikeout rate. It’s too early to say he’s fixed, but he’s certainly seeing the ball well.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $222K Relay Throw [$50K to 1st]


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and customer (my username is theglt13) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.