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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Targets, Values for May 23

Pearce Dietrich 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: Houston Astros at Oakland Athletics Kelley L Cox-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.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $150K Bat Flip [$50K to 1st]


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PITCHER

Stud

Max Fried, Atlanta Braves vs. Pittsburgh Pirates ($8,600) - This is a risky play because Fried left his last start with a hand cramp. He lasted six innings, but it will still lower his ownership on a 10-game slate. Further suppressing his ownership are his stats against right-handed batters. He looks like a pitcher to target, not roster. His .405 wOBA to right-handed batters is not a platoon weakness, it’s due to a .406 BABIP. Fried had bad luck to start the season. In his three starts since returning from injury, Fried has pitched 17 innings and only allowed three runs while striking out 18 batters. He’s fine, and he’s facing a Pirates team that cannot hit left-handed pitching (80 wRC+, .284 wOBA and .133 ISO).

Other Option: Zack Wheeler ($11,200)

Value

Kris Bubic, Kansas City Royals vs. Detroit Tigers ($5,000) - The Tigers are not complete pushovers anymore, but they’re still bad, especially when facing left-handed pitching (63 wRC+, .260 WOBA and .085 ISO). Bubic is a work in progress, but he’s impressed the Royals coaching staff enough to earn a spot in the rotation. He’s not a flashy prospect with a lot of upside, but he’s not getting blown up like the typical prospect either. His approach has been simple: limit the hard contact (85.7 mph average exit velocity) and keep the ball on the ground (four-degree launch angle).

Other Option: Luis Castillo ($6,500)


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CATCHER

Stud

Salvador Perez, Kansas City Royals vs. Detroit Tigers ($4,800) - Catcher is not a great position to pay up for on Sunday’s slate, but it is a way to get very contrarian. Casey Mize will likely be a great pitcher someday, but like many prospects, his formative years feature many meltdowns. Mize has strung together three good starts after several meltdowns. Over the course of those three good starts, his BABIP is .160. Regression is coming.

Other Option: Yermin Mercedes ($4,700)

Value

Jason Castro, Houston Astros at Texas Rangers ($4,100) - Mike Foltynewicz is going to be a popular target on this slate (.436 wOBA, .317 ISO and 2.8 HR/9 vs. vs. LHB), and the Astros will be a chalky stack (113 wRC+ vs. right-handed pitching). In 43 at-bats against right-handed pitching, Castro has raked (.442 wOBA, .273 ISO and 192 wRC+). Outside of Astros stacks, Castro makes for a good one-off at a weak position.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Jason Castro is not in the lineup for today’s game vs. the Rangers.

Other Option: Tucker Barnhart ($4,000)

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $150K Bat Flip [$50K to 1st]


FIRST BASE

Stud

Trey Mancini, Baltimore Orioles at Washington Nationals ($5,400) - Patrick Corbin is going to be another popular target Sunday (.409 wOBA, .291 ISO and 2.0 HR/9 vs. RHB), but a Baltimore stack will be less popular than an Astros stack because they’re the Orioles. Stacking Baltimore bats does not have as good a chance for success as the Astros, but there are worthwhile expensive and cheap bats in this lineup. Mancini isn’t cheap, but he’s worth the price. He has a .457 wOBA, .367 ISO and a 198 wRC+ against left-handed pitching this season.

Other Option: Yuli Gurriel ($5,700)

Value

Rhys Hoskins, Philadelphia Phillies vs. Boston Red Sox ($4,100) - His struggles against right-handed pitching continue to suppress his salary, but he’s too cheap every time he squares off against a lefty. Hoskins has crushed left-handed pitching throughout his career (.388 wOBA and .256 ISO), and this season is not any different (.411 wOBA and .278 ISO). Eduardo Rodriguez is getting blown up by right-handed batters nearly every game (.361 wOBA and .209 ISO). A lot of his woes are BABIP-related, and his wOBA is higher than his xwOBA. But after eight starts, he should have righted the ship by now.

Other Option: Daniel Vogelbach ($2,700)


SECOND BASE

Stud

Jose Altuve, Houston Astros at Texas Rangers ($6,000) - With elite players, platoon matchups are not necessary. No other second baseman is in Altuve’s area code Sunday. He’s one of the hottest hitters over the last week (.435 wOBA and 187 wRC+), and he has not had any problems with right-handed pitching this season (.346 wOBA and .213 ISO). His matchup against Mike Foltynewicz is a giant green light.

Other Option: Jean Segura ($4,600)

Value

Jazz Chisholm Jr., Miami Marlins vs. New York Mets ($4,400) - The Mets have a good bullpen, but they have been stretched thin due to injuries in the rotation. On Saturday, the bullpen had to take over in the fifth inning, and they made it to the ninth before blowing the game. This bullpen has pitched the fourth-most innings over the last week. On Sunday, it’s going to be another bullpen game. Chisholm has a .389 wOBA, .236 ISO and 151 wRC+, and he’s bound to get a pitcher he likes Sunday.

Other Option: Cesar Hernandez ($3,800)


THIRD BASE

Stud

Alex Bregman, Houston Astros at Texas Rangers ($5,900) - It’s chalky, but if Bregman drops 25 points on Mike Foltynewicz and a Rangers bullpen that has been the third-worst in baseball over the last two weeks (4.92 xFIP), then DFS players will regret being cute. Folty mainly throws a fastball and slider. The Astros are the best team in baseball against fastballs and they rank fourth against sliders.

Other Option: Yoan Moncada ($4,600)

Value

Josh Donaldson, Minnesota Twins at Cleveland Indians ($4,500) - His price might be a little high for what he has done this season, but power has upside and that’s never cheap. Donaldson has 15 barrels and a .411 xwOBA (.353 wOBA), so a home run is not a stretch in this matchup. Zach Plesac has been decent this season, but he’s allowing 2.0 HR/9 to right-handed batters.

Other Option: Austin Riley ($4,300)


SHORTSTOP

Stud

Bo Bichette, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Tampa Bay Rays ($5,700) - Josh Fleming has held right-handed batters in check so far this season, but the bottom could drop out at anytime. Fleming has a .216 BABIP when facing right-handed batters, and he’s only striking them out 14% of the time. Eventually, the contact is not going to end in his favor, and the park in Dunedin is not a place where pitchers want to give up contact. Bichette has a .364 wOBA, .235 ISO and 132 wRC+ against left-handed pitching this season

Other Option: Trea Turner ($6,200)

Value

Freddy Galvis, Baltimore Orioles at Washington Nationals ($3,300) - He’s a secret cheat code this season. Galvis is hitting right-handed pitching and left-handed pitching, yet his price never goes up. He’s facing a bad left-handed pitcher in Patrick Corbin. Against left-handed pitching, Galvis has a .351 wOBA, .209 ISO and 127 wRC+.

Other Option: Willy Adames ($2,800)


OUTFIELD

Stud

Yordan Alvarez, Houston Astros at. Texas Rangers ($5,700) - Don’t fight it, just play Astros. On the top of Sunday’s Astro stack is Alvarez. The lefty is destroying right-handed pitching (.404 wOBA, .253 ISO and 166 wRC+). Mike Foltynewicz was once a decent pitcher, but even then, he struggled against left-handed batters (4.93 career xFIP).

EDITOR’S NOTE: Yordan Alvarez is not in the lineup for today’s game vs. the Rangers.

Other Option: Ronald Acuna Jr. ($6,000)

Value

Austin Hays, Baltimore Orioles at Washington Nationals ($3,500) - His average has dropped this season, but his ISO has doubled. Much of that increase is the result of the power that he has demonstrated against left-handed pitching (.317 ISO). In 44 at-bats against left-handed pitching this season, he has a .395 wOBA and 157 wRC+. Patrick Corbin suddenly went from a stud to a dud last season, and the biggest reason is his sinker is no longer effective against right-handed batters. Last season, right-handed batters had a .432 wOBA against Corbin’s sinker; this season, it has a ballooned to a .551 wOBA.

Other Option: Harold Ramirez ($2,600)

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $150K 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 greenflagradio2) 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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