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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Targets, Values for April 26

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

Oakland Athletics v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images

We’ve got an 11-game featured slate on Tuesday night with no shortage of intriguing high-end pitching options. If anything, with offense down across the league, it’ll be much more difficult to figure out the bats that you want in your lineups this evening.

That’s where I come in. Here are my top studs and values for tonight’s action.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB $222K Jr. 10th Anniversary Special [$50K to 1st]

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Kevin Gausman, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Boston Red Sox, $8,700 - I literally wrote up Gausman as a smart Cy Young bet last week, so my feelings on the RHP are pretty clear. However, the DraftKings algorithm obviously has different taste. I mean, I think it’s odd that the league-leader in FIP (0.71) and swinging strike rate (20.7%) is only the sixth-most expensive starter on Tuesday’s slate, but maybe I’m the weird one? Gausman faced this same Red Sox team back on Thursday, allowing just a single earned run across eight innings with eight strikeouts. He’d finish with 31.8 DKFP. This wasn’t an isolated incident for Boston, either. In fact, the Red Sox’s current 77 wRC+ is the lowest mark in the American League.


Eduardo Rodriguez, Detroit Tigers at Minnesota Twins, $6,300 - There are two pitchers on Tuesday’s slate with particularly depressed price points: Rodriguez and Marcus Stroman ($5,900). Of the two, E-Rod possesses the higher upside, so we’ll roll with the left-hander. Still, that’s not to suggest that there haven’t been red flags in Rodriguez’s first three outings of 2022. His contact rate is way up, while his swinging strike rate and fastball velocity are down. Those aren’t the trends you want to see. However, the 29-year-old is coming off his best start of the season — 98 pitches against the Yankees — and I’m willing to give him the slight benefit of the doubt, especially at this price tag. It also helps that Minnesota sports the AL’s second-highest strikeout rate (25.5%).



Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Toronto Blue Jays vs. Boston Red Sox, $5,700 - Guerrero hasn’t hit a home run since Apr. 15, but it’s not like the All-Star has been struggling at the dish. Vladdy Jr. has three multi-hit performances in his last four games and, for the season, his .434 xwOBA and 192 wRC+ are among the best in baseball. All and all, he’s exactly the type of hitter Nick Pivetta ($7,600) doesn’t want to see for the second time in as many starts. The RHP has thrown 11.2 innings in 2022 and he’s already conceded four home runs. Pivetta also comes into tonight’s contest with a 15.91 xERA, so you’re probably going to want at least a little exposure to the Blue Jays’ lineup.


Trea Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona Diamondbacks, $5,200 - Simply put, Zach Davies ($5,700) is one of my favorite pitchers to stack against. It’s not difficult to see why, either. Across Davies’ past 13 starts — a span that stretches back to the beginning of last August — the RHP owns an 8.39 ERA. That’s awful. Specifically, Davies has had his issues with right-handed batters, surrendering a .455 wOBA and 3.8 home runs per nine within the split. Well, Turner’s one of the more accomplished RHBs in all of baseball and he’s hitting atop a lineup that carries the slate’s highest implied team total. That’s a nice combo.


Matt Chapman, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Boston Red Sox, $3,800 - First and foremost, this is an enticing price point for Chapman, who has crushed the ball at the Rogers Centre so far this season. It’s just 28 plate appearances, but the veteran is slashing .250/.357/.625 with a 181 wRC+, and even when Chapman was with Oakland, he certainly enjoyed hitting in Canada. Chapman also has an extreme fly ball profile, which matches up exceedingly well with Pivetta. Not only is the RHP giving up an opponent barrel on an AL-worst 17.9% of the batted ball events he’s induced so far in 2022, he’s surrendering a 98.6 mph average exit velocity on fly balls and line drives, as well. That’s the second-highest mark among qualified starters.


Yuli Gurriel, Houston Astros at Texas Rangers, $3,600 - When Gurriel is facing a left-handed starter, you want Gurriel in a lineup or two. It’s as simple as that. Since the beginning of last season, the veteran is slashing .323/.391/.531 with a .922 OPS and a 152 wRC+ in his 220 plate appearances within the split. All three of the hits Gurriel has off of LHPs in 2022 are for extra-bases. The man just knows how to crush southpaws. Taylor Hearn ($6,100) also isn’t exactly in the best form coming into Tuesday, having allowed a combined eight runs over his last two starts.



George Springer, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Boston Red Sox, $5,600 - For the season as a whole, Springer’s an interesting case study. His expected stats and contact stats are underwhelming — his xwOBA his just .308 — yet at the end of the day, the veteran has registered a 142 wRC+ across his first 67 plate appearances of 2022. By this point, I’ve made my feelings about Pivetta very clear, so continue to stack the Jays’ best bats, which certainly includes their power-hitting leadoff man.


Editor’s Note: Yankees OF Aaron Hicks has been placed on the paternity list.

Aaron Hicks, New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles, $3,900 - It appears that Hicks has lost the leadoff spot in the Yankees’ lineup, but he’s still hit sixth in past two times New York has squared-off with a right-handed starter. Hicks has also been putting up some serious numbers at Yankee Stadium in 2022, as the switch-hitter is slashing .333/.429/.458 with a 164 wRC+ within the split across 28 plate appearances. Those stats should continue to get better in a matchup with Jordan Lyles ($5,500), as the veteran has surrendered a .458 wOBA to the LHBs he’s faced over his first three starts of the season. Those issues could make Joey Gallo ($3,400) an interesting value option, as well, yet Hicks is clearly the safer pick.


Jesus Sanchez, Miami Marlins at Washington Nationals, $3,600 - There are few people in baseball crushing at the level of Sanchez. The LHB has been terrorizing right-handed pitching so far in 2022, sporting a .375 ISO and a .510 wOBA in his 44 plate appearances within the split. There’s a lot of swing-and-miss in Sanchez’s bat, but there’s literally no reason for him to be this cheap on Tuesday’s slate, particularly in a matchup with the home run prone Josiah Gray ($8,400). The RHP’s xwOBAcon is .422. The average exit velocity on the fly balls and line drives he’s induced is a whopping 97.2 mph. When Gray gets hit, he gets hit hard.


Chas McCormick, Houston Astros at Texas Rangers, $2,600 - With Jose Altuve (hamstring) still on the IL, it’s McCormick who has recently stepped into the Astros’ vacant leadoff spot. Obviously, it takes more than lineup positioning and a salary below $3K to be viable, but needless to say, it’s a nice start. For his career, McCormick has posted a 129 wRC+ in his 102 plate appearances against LHPs, setting the stage for a good matchup against Hearn. The Rangers’ lefty has been beaten up so far in 2022, conceding an opponent barrel on 16.7% of the BBEs he’s induced through three starts. That’s currently the fifth-worst figure in baseball.


Toronto Blue Jays vs. Boston Red Sox - Offense is down around the league, but maybe the “new” baseballs weren’t able to get across the border. As a team, the Jays have posted a league-best .866 OPS when playing at home in 2022, a figure they pair with an equally gaudy 145 wRC+. The big bats are expensive, but with the ability to offset costs with Chapman, Lourdes Gurriel ($3,300) and Zack Collins ($3,300), there are many ways to make this stack work financially.

Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona Diamondbacks - Speaking of expensive positional players, the Dodgers are another team to exploit on Tuesday evening. The aforementioned Davies is a high-contact pitcher who has struggled significantly in recent starts, and his specific inability to retire RHBs opens the door to Turner, Mookie Betts ($4,800), Will Smith ($4,700) and Justin Turner ($4,000). Honestly, now that I’ve listed the names, this isn’t even really all that crazy a stack from the perspective of your wallet. Proceed without caution.

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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.

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