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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Targets, Values for May 11

Garion Thorne gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Tuesday’s fantasy baseball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 7:05 p.m. ET.

Chicago White Sox v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Even though John Means ($10,300) was an All-Star was in 2019, I don’t think I ever expected the left-hander to be the most expensive pitcher on a huge weekday slate. However, after pitching a no-hitter in his last outing, that’s the exact situation we find ourselves in on Tuesday. In fact, Means is the lone starter priced above $10K on this 12-game schedule.

Should you be using the Orioles’ new found ace in your lineups? Let’s go position-by-position and break it all down.

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Walker Buehler, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Seattle Mariners, $9,800 - Instead of using Means, how about we just exploit the same matchup he had for his historic performance? Seattle has been in a tailspin the past two weeks, hitting a league-low .197 as a team within that span of time. The Mariners have also been quite prone to striking out, as they sit fourth in baseball with a 27.1% strikeout rate in that same 14-day stretch. To his credit, Buehler is also worthy of consideration on his own merit. The RHP has shaken off an odd start to the season and has pitched to a 1.98 xFIP with a 36.0% strikeout rate in his last three outings.


Dylan Cease, Chicago White Sox vs. Minnesota Twins, $7,000 - Even with the presence of someone like Brady Singer ($5,700) on today’s slate, I’m still a little worried that Cease is going to be incredibly chalky in this matchup. However, while that isn’t ideal, it’s difficult to ignore that the 25-year-old’s salary does not match his recent output or his massive potential on Tuesday. In his last two starts, Cease has thrown 13.0 scoreless innings and struck out 20 opponents. It’s a stretch so dominant that Cease has also averaged an eye-popping 39.1 DKFP per outing. Heck, for the season as a whole, the former top prospect has managed a 2.81 FIP and a 32.0% strikeout rate, a series of numbers that once again illustrate just how off Cease’s price point is for this evening.



Will Smith, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Seattle Mariners, $5,200 - While Smith has never actually hit left-handed pitching all that well, he’s more than viable in tonight’s matchup against Yusei Kikuchi ($8,400). This is also about more than the fact that the LHP has surrendered a whopping 1.86 home runs per nine to right-handed opponents so far this season. Smith primarily hits fourth or fifth for Los Angeles and the Dodgers have one of the highest non-Coors implied totals for Tuesday night. Hard to ask for more from a catcher.


Victor Caratini, San Diego Padres at Colorado Rockies, $3,700 - It’s unclear if Caratini will draw the start over Austin Nola ($4,000) on Tuesday — especially with a day-off on Monday — but there’s no question that the former is hitting better than the latter so far this season. Nola’s struggled to a .478 OPS since coming off the IL, while Caratini has a home run and a double across his past two starts. Considering Antonio Senzatela ($5,200) has always had his issues with LHBs, I’d lean towards Caratini getting the nod at Coors.

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Eric Hosmer, San Diego Padres at Colorado Rockies, $5,000 - I just referenced Senzatela’s struggles with left-handed hitters, so let’s dive into those splits for a second. Dating back to the beginning of 2019, Senzatela has conceded a .362 wOBA to the 530 lefties he’s faced, only managing to strike out a measly 11.7% of those opponents. That’s a lot of contact, which doesn’t usually lead to success in Colorado. For his part, Hosmer is currently slashing .307/.373/.449 with a 129 wRC+. He’s seeing the ball well and should be able to take advantage of this plush matchup.


Jared Walsh, Los Angeles Angels at Houston Astros, $3,800 - This has nothing to do with Lance McCullers ($9,600), who is having a great start to his 2021 campaign. Instead, this is simply about an asset not getting enough respect. Walsh comes into Tuesday’s slate third in the league in wRC+ (184) and sixth in wOBA (.433). Hitting behind Mike Trout ($5,800), Walsh is also tied for second in MLB in RBI with 29. Basically, there’s no good reason for him to have a price tag below $4K in an opposite-hand matchup, regardless of who the RHP is. I’m not recommending an Angels stack, but Walsh is fine on an island.



Whit Merrifield, Kansas City Royals at Detroit Tigers, $5,300 - Count me among those still very skeptical of Matthew Boyd ($6,300) and his amazing start to the season. There’s a chance that Boyd, an extreme fly ball pitcher, has been reaping the benefits of the new baseball design, but the fact that this new found success has coincided with his highest opponent contact rate (80.6%) since 2016 is concerning. Anyway, Merrifield has crushed LHPs the past few seasons, specifically Boyd, who he is 25-for-51 (.490) against in 54 career plate appearances. If Merrifield doesn’t tag the southpaw, he’ll also have a few more chances against a Tigers bullpen that owns the worst ERA in baseball.


Marwin Gonzalez, Boston Red Sox vs. Oakland Athletics, $3,400 - I’m not quite sure why Gonzalez was chosen to hit leadoff for the Red Sox against RHPs with Enrique Hernandez (hamstring) on the IL — Gonzalez has a .596 OPS as an LHB in 2021 — but I’m not Alex Cora. I can only react to his decisions and, if Gonzalez is leading off once again on Tuesday, he’s viable based solely on the possibility that he can accumulate five plate appearances. Volume is king in DFS, right?



Justin Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Seattle Mariners, $5,500 - You know the drill by now. You play Turner when the Dodgers are facing a left-handed pitcher. It’s been that way for a half-decade, so why change now? Turner comes into tonight’s matchup against Kikuchi in possession of a 172 wRC+ in his first 49 plate appearances within the split in 2021. So, even at 36-years-old, the third baseman can still plague southpaws.


Cavan Biggio, Toronto Blue Jays at Atlanta Braves, $3,400 - Atlanta’s starting pitcher has yet to be confirmed for Tuesday night, but all signs point to Bryse Wilson ($5,300) getting the nod. If that is the case, Biggio and his teammates become a very obvious stacking opportunity. Wilson struggled at the MLB level to begin 2021 and, for his career, he’s allowed LHBs to compile a massive .448 wOBA. Biggio isn’t the ideal bat to take advantage of this flaw, yet he does have a 104 wRC+ versus RHPs and he’s looked much better at the plate in recent weeks. At this modest a price, feel free to fire him up.



Bo Bichette, Toronto Blue Jays at Atlanta Braves, $5,500 - Not to belabor the point, but Wilson has thrown 54.2 career innings in the majors and sports an ugly 6.09 ERA in those opportunities. There’s a reason his last outing came in Triple-A. Toronto’s implied run total will be huge if Wilson starts this game, especially considering the team ranks first in home runs (24) and fourth in wRC+ (121) across the past two weeks. This offense is heating up and Bichette, who leads the team in home runs (8), stolen bases (6) and runs scored (27), is right at the center of it all.


Didi Gregorius, Philadelphia Phillies at Washington Nationals, $3,800 - There’s nothing too complex about Gregorius’ viability on tonight’s slate. The infielder draws an opposite-hand matchup against Erick Fedde ($6,000), a man who has pitched to a 5.27 ERA in his first six outings of 2021. Gregorius doesn’t have amazing offensive numbers so far this season, but he’ll likely be hitting sixth in a lineup that should do some damage. That’s enough for a look at $3.8K.



Trent Grisham, San Diego Padres at Colorado Rockies, $4,300 - I don’t understand this price point. Usually, when a team is headed to Coors Field, you can almost pencil in a salary bump of at least $500 per player. However, Grisham is only $4.3K on Tuesday, despite the fact he was as expensive as $5.6K just last week. He’s earned that price tag, too. Grisham is consistently hitting second in a dangerous Padres’ lineup, and he owns a 145 wRC+ through 111 plate appearances. I guess we won’t ask questions and we can simply enjoy the savings.


Teoscar Hernandez, Toronto Blue Jays at Atlanta Braves, $3,900 - Another interesting salary from the DraftKings algorithm. Hernandez has been red-hot since returning from the COVID-19 IL back on Apr. 30, managing a 128 wRC+ in that span of time. He’s also been exclusively batting cleanup in a Jays lineup that always has the potential to put up some crooked numbers. In a matchup versus the aforementioned Wilson, Hernandez is just too cheap.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $250K Slugfest [$50K to 1st]

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