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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Targets, Values for May 15

Zach Thompson gives his top studs and value plays for Monday’s fantasy baseball slate on DraftKings.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Minnesota Twins Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

There’s no slow start to this work week in the MLB, with 10 games ready to fill up the Monday night slate of DFS fantasy baseball slate on DraftKings. There are two divisional matchups early in the evening and some intriguing interleague play on the second half of the slate. One of those games takes place at Coors Field, as the Reds roll into Denver in a game that will be important to keep tabs on due to the elevation.

Make sure to keep a close eye on pregame lineups and the latest player news by installing the DK Live app and following DK Live on Twitter (@dklive). I’m also on Twitter (@ZT_Sports), where you can keep up with all my picks as the season continues.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $300K Relay Throw [$100K 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

Freddy Peralta, Milwaukee Brewers at St. Louis Cardinals ($9,000) – Peralta has been excellent this season, going 4-2 in his seven starts with a 3.32 ERA and 3.41 FIP. He has increased his K/9 rate from 9.9 last season to 10.2 this season with 46 strikeouts in 40 2/3 innings.

Peralta has been consistent, as well, going at least six innings in five of his seven starts and posting over 22 DKFP in each of those five outings. He had 10 strikeouts and posted 23.5 DKFP vs. the Rockies at Coors Field and followed that up by shutting down the Los Angeles Dodgers in his most recent start, allowing just three hits and one run over six innings. This will be the second time this season that he’s faced the Cardinals, posting 25.3 DKFP with seven strikeouts in a win back on April 9. Even though the Cardinals’ lineup has been better over their past few games, it’s still a good matchup to attack with Peralta given how strong his form has been this season.

Other Options – Framber Valdez ($10,700), Merrill Kelly ($8,800)

Value

Michael Wacha, San Diego Padres vs. Kansas City Royals ($7,800) – Wacha has allowed just one run on five hits over 12 innings in his two most recent starts, and he gets to pitch at home vs. the Royals after getting an extra day of rest. He was originally scheduled to pitch Sunday vs. the Dodgers but instead lands in this much more favorable spot.

Wacha has a 4.82 ERA and 4.13 FIP on the season but has been better lately after a pair of rough road starts vs. the Cubs and Diamondbacks. He doesn’t bring a ton of strikeout upside, posting 30 strikeouts in 37 1/3 innings this season, but he has done a good job limiting damage and is the best option under $8K on this slate as a result. He’s surrounded by some very shaky options in bad matchups, so it’s ok to take his slightly lower ceiling if you’re going cheap at SP2 and raise your ceiling with the rest of your roster.

Other Option – Alek Manoah ($7,900)


INFIELD

Stud

Marcus Semien, Texas Rangers vs. Atlanta Braves ($5,700) – Semien has hit safely in 11 of his past 12 games, going 16-for-48 (.333) with three doubles, three stolen bases, two home runs and a .413 wOBA for 12.1 DKFP per game. He has at least 9 DKFP in five straight and nine of his last 10, as he continues to thrive atop the Rangers’ batting order. Texas is second in the Majors in runs scored, behind only the Rays. They’ll look to keep rolling after winning seven of their last nine games as they come home to face Charlie Morton ($8,500) and the Braves. Semien is 6-for-17 (.353) against Morton in their past meetings.

Stud

Nick Senzel, Cincinnati Reds at Colorado Rockies ($4,500) – Senzel has been able to stay healthy so far this season, and his remade swing is paying off. He has also moved up and hit second in the order in several games recently, which would put him in a prime production spot vs. the Rockies at Coors Field. He picked up two more hits on Sunday and is 21-for-60 (.350) with a .417 wOBA over his past 16 games, including four doubles, three home runs and even a pair of stolen bases. Despite his hot hitting and power potential, he’s pretty affordable for a big bat at Coors, so he’s a strong option at the hot corner.

Other Options – Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ($5,800), Trea Turner ($5,200), Christopher Morel ($4,400)

Value

Alex Kirilloff, Minnesota Twins at Los Angeles Dodgers ($2,800) – Kirilloff has been a top hitting prospect over the past few years but has been sidetracked by injuries and ineffectiveness. He seems to be fully recovered from offseason wrist surgery, though, and ready to get on track and deliver on all that potential. He has gone 9-for-22 (.409) in his eight games since being called up from Triple-A. Two of those games were pinch-hit appearances, so in his six starts, he is averaging 12.5 DKFP per game. He has a .543 wOBA due to his two doubles and two home runs and has also scored six runs while driving in three. Especially if he hits second in the lineup as expected, he will be a bargain at this salary and can slide into your lineup as a value 1B option or a cheap play in the OF.

Value

Matt McLain, Cincinnati Reds at Colorado Rockies ($2,000) – McLain is expected to make his MLB debut on Monday night and gets the added bonus of the Coors Field effect while coming at the minimum salary. He’s not just cheap and in a good spot, though, he’s a quality prospect. McLain was a first-round pick from UCLA in 2021 and has quickly risen through the minors. He played 38 games this year for the Louisville Bats in Triple-A and hit .348 with 12 home runs and 10 stolen bases. As always, there may be an adjustment period as he faces MLB pitching for the first time, but his ceiling is extremely high and the Reds should give him a long look as their regular shortstop. At this salary, he’s a great option to allow you to stack top-dollar options across the rest of your roster.

Other Options – Jonah Heim ($3,900), Casey Schmitt ($3,000), Brice Turang ($2,500)


OUTFIELD

Stud

Ronald Acuña Jr., Atlanta Braves at Texas Rangers ($6,300) – Acuña continues to be on a rampage this season, putting up big fantasy numbers in almost every game either with his speed or his power. He demonstrated his versatility with two stolen bases and 15 DKFP on Saturday, followed by a home run and 21 DKFP on Sunday. He has at least 15 DKFP in four of his past five games and is averaging 12.4 DKFP per contest for the season on eight home runs, 17 stolen bases, a .433 wOBA and a 52.6% hard-hit rate, per Statcast. He continues to crush the ball in just about every matchup and can put up big numbers on any night. He’s worth paying up for on this slate, as the Braves are expected to take on Triple-A call-up Cody Bradford.

Juan Soto, San Diego Padres vs. Kansas City Royals ($5,300) – Soto is heating up after a slow start and has hit safely in 13 of his past 15 games. He has gone 21-for-55 (.382) over that stretch with nine doubles, three home runs, two stolen bases and a .504 wOBA. He and the Padres come home after dropping five straight on their road trip, including being swept by their rivals in Los Angeles. They’ll look to take out their frustrations on Brad Keller ($7,300) and the Royals. Keller should be a good matchup for Soto since he has surrendered a .370 wOBA to left-handed hitters.

Other Options – Corbin Carroll ($5,200), Jarred Kelenic ($4,700)

Value

Leody Taveras, Texas Rangers vs. Atlanta Braves ($2,400) – Taveras has been a great value over the past few weeks for the Rangers and continues to get on base and offer a speed threat from under $2.5K. He has gone 26-for-76 (.342) over his past 21 games with six doubles, a triple, a home run and four stolen bases. He has averaged 10.5 DKFP over his 11 most recent contests and can make a nice sneaky reverse stack if he hits at the bottom of the order ahead of Semien and the big bats at the top for Texas.

Value

Dominic Fletcher, Arizona Diamondbacks at Oakland Athletics ($2,400) – Another young outfielder who has been bringing great value lately has been Fletcher, who joined the D-backs at the end of April. In his 13 games, the 25-year-old lefty is hitting .429 (18-for-42) with three doubles, a triple and two home runs for an impressive .488 wOBA. He has a max exit velocity of over 98 mph in seven of his last nine games with an at-bat, and he’s clearly seeing and hitting the ball well.

Fletcher is swinging a hot stick coming into a good matchup with A’s starter Drew Rucinski ($5,000), who has allowed 17 runs on 21 hits in 14 1/3 innings over his three starts. Fletcher is a great way to get a piece of that matchup and can be paired up with Corbin Carroll ($5,200) or Christian Walker ($4,500) in a nice mini-stack.

Other Options – Jarren Duran ($3,900), Esteury Ruiz ($3,600), Trevor Larnach ($3,200)


Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $300K Relay Throw [$100K to 1st]


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is z.thompson) 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.