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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Targets, Values for May 16

Matt LaMarca gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Sunday’s fantasy baseball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 1:05 p.m. ET.

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at Toronto Blue Jays Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Sunday features a 10-game main slate starting at 1:05 p.m. ET.

Let’s go position-by-position and break down everything you’ll need to know to set your lineups.


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PITCHER

Stud

Freddy Peralta, Milwaukee Brewers vs. Atlanta Braves ($9,200) – This is a pretty weak slate for pitching. No one is priced above $9,600, and only three pitchers are priced above $8,600. There’s also no pitcher with particularly impressive Vegas data, with only one team currently implied for less than 3.5 runs (Texas Rangers).

With that in mind, I like the idea of targeting Peralta at the position. He’s gotten off to an impressive start this season, posting a 2.77 ERA and a 1.95 expected ERA, and he’s one of the best strikeout pitchers in baseball. He posted a 14.42 K/9 over 29 1/3 innings in 2020, and he’s followed that up with a 14.08 K/9 through his first 39 innings this season. The Braves aren’t a particularly good matchup, but their implied team total of 3.5 runs is tied for the second-lowest mark on the slate.

Other Options – Lance McCullers ($9,600), Huascar Ynoa ($8,500)

Value

Kyle Hendricks, Chicago Cubs @ Detroit Tigers ($6,800) – Hendricks honestly might be toast at this point in his career, but I’m willing to give him one more chance vs. the Tigers. He’s struggled to a 6.23 ERA through his first seven starts this season, but the Tigers are about as good as it gets from a matchup perspective. They rank 20th in wRC+ against right-handers in 2021, and they also own the second-highest strikeout rate in those matchups.

Other Options – Dylan Cease ($7,400), Robbie Ray ($7,200)


Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $200K Bat Flip [$50K to 1st]


CATCHER

Stud

Christian Vazquez, Boston Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Angels ($4,400) – The Red Sox own the second-highest implied team total on the slate at 5.3 runs, and they’re squaring off with left-hander Jose Quintana. They have a lot of players who can do damage against left-handed pitching, and Vazquez is one of them. He’s not off to the best start in those matchups this season, but he’s still posted a .306 wOBA and .196 ISO against left-handers over the past 12 months. You’ll take those marks at the catcher position.

Quintana has also struggled mightily against right-handed batters this season. They’ve posted a .409 wOBA against him, and Quintana owns a 4.94 FIP in those matchups.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Christian Vazquez is not in the lineup for today’s game vs. the Angels.

Other Options – Willson Contreras ($5,300), Yermin Mercedes ($4,500)

Value

Danny Jansen, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Philadelphia Phillies ($2,800) – Jansen is very affordable at $2,800, and he’s playing for the team with the highest implied team total on the slate (5.8 runs). That’s more than enough to make him viable at the catcher position. Jansen is off to a slow start this season, but he did post a 118 wRC+ against right-handers last season. Chase Anderson is an extremely mediocre right-hander – he’s pitched to a 5.23 ERA and 5.28 FIP this year – so Jansen is perfectly acceptable on Sunday.

Other Options – Kyle Higashioka ($3,500), Martin Maldonado ($2,400)


FIRST BASE

Stud

Vlad Guerrero Jr., Toronto Blue Jays vs. Philadelphia Phillies ($6,000) – Vladdy Jr. was one of the most-hyped prospects in recent baseball memory, which made his performances in 2019 and 2020 actually a bit disappointing. He graded out as a roughly average major league hitter in those seasons, and he hit just 24 homers in his first 757 plate appearances.

However, he has taken the league by storm in 2021. He’s a little older and in better shape, and he’s tearing the absolute cover off the ball. He’s posted a 181 wRC+ through his first 38 games, and he’s been a nightmare for right-handed pitchers in particular. He owns a .300 wOBA in those matchups, and Anderson is someone who has struggled with the home run ball in the past. It would not be a huge shock to see Guerrero deposit one into the bleachers on Sunday.

Other Options – Luke Voit ($5,400), Shohei Ohtani ($4,500)

Value

Michael Chavis, Boston Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Angels ($2,300) – Chavis will bat leadoff for the Red Sox on Sunday, which makes him an excellent option at $2,300. He hasn’t found sustained success at the major league level, but he does own a .241 ISO for his career against left-handed pitchers.

Other Options – Ryan Mountcastle ($3,400), Rowdy Tellez ($3,300)


SECOND BASE

Stud

Jose Altuve, Houston Astros vs. Texas Rangers ($5,600) – Altuve managed to return value for the Astros yesterday thanks to one hit and three walks, and he’s in another good spot on Sunday. He’s taking on right-hander Kyle Gibson, who has been one of the luckiest pitchers in baseball this season. His luck is bound to run out eventually, and the Astros have been one of the best teams in baseball against right-handed pitchers this season.

Other Options – Marcus Semien ($5,500), Jean Segura ($4,700)

Value

Luis Arraez, Minnesota Twins vs. Oakland Athletics ($3,300) – Arraez is someone who could win a batting title someday, and he’s posted a .329 average against right-handers so far this season. He doesn’t have a lot of power in his bat – he has just one homer through 122 plate appearances – but there’s more than one way to skin a cat in MLB DFS. You’ll gladly take multiple hits with a couple of runs scored with Arraez at his current salary, and that’s definitely a possible outcome vs. Chris Bassitt.

Other Options – David Fletcher ($3,900), Jeff McNeil ($3,800)


THIRD BASE

Stud

Yoan Moncada, Chicago White Sox vs. Kansas City Royals ($4,700) – Moncada was once considered the top prospect in baseball, and while he hasn’t quite reached those heights in the majors, he’s become a good everyday player for the White Sox. He’s posted a 131 wRC+ against right-handers this season, which gives him the advantage against Brady Singer ($6.500). Singer has taken a step forward in his second year in the big leagues, but he’s struggled to a 5.04 xFIP against left-handed batters.

Other Options – Alex Bregman ($5,900)

Value

Alec Bohm, Philadelphia Phillies @ Toronto Blue Jays ($3,400) – Bohm has struggled at the plate this season, but he still profiles as someone who should hit well in the major leagues. He found a lot of success in his first taste of big-league action last season, and even with his slow start in 2021, he’s still posted a 116 wRC+ vs. southpaws for his career. He’s a viable option vs. Ray.

Other Options – Maikel Franco ($3,800), Marwin Gonzalez ($3,600)


SHORTSTOP

Stud

Francisco Lindor, New York Mets @ Tampa Bay Rays ($4,900) – Is Lindor’s season-long slump finally over? That remains to be seen, but he did hit a homer in yesterday’s contest. The majority of his success this season has come as a right-handed hitter – he’s posted a 149 wRC+ against southpaws – and he’ll be on that side of the dish Sunday vs. Josh Fleming ($7,000).

Other Options – Xander Bogaerts ($5,700), Bo Bichette ($5,400)

Value

Jonathan Arauz, Boston Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Angels ($2,500) – Shortstop is not a strong value position on Sunday, but Arauz makes some sense in Red Sox stacks. He’s dirt cheap at $2,500, and you can stack him with the top of the order since he’s batting ninth.

Other Options – Freddy Galvis ($3,400), Jose Iglesias ($3,100)


OUTFIELD

Stud

J.D. Martinez, Boston Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Angels ($5,400) – Martinez is arguably the best hitter against left-handed pitching in all of baseball. He had a bit of a down year in that department last year, but he’s posted a .374 wOBA and .214 ISO against southpaws this season. Those numbers still pale in comparison to his marks from some of his previous seasons, so it wouldn’t shock me if he improves even further over the course of the season. He’s underpriced in this matchup vs. Jose Quintana ($6,200).

Other Options – Mike Trout ($6,100), Teoscar Hernandez ($4,400)

Value

Hunter Renfroe, Boston Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Angels ($2,800) – Let’s wrap things up with one more option for the Red Sox. Renfroe is another lefty masher in their lineup on Sunday, and he’s very affordable at just $2,800. He owns a .247 ISO against southpaws over the past 12 months, and he’s posted a 134 wRC+ against left-handers so far this season.

Other Options – Lourdes Gurriel ($3,200), Mike Tauchman ($3,100)

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $200K Bat Flip [$50K to 1st]


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


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