FanDuel MLB: Saturday Breakdown
FanDuel MLB: Saturday Breakdown

This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.

Saturday's main slate features just six games, and Coors Field is on the schedule with a hot Dodgers offense coming to call. That effectively leaves 10 pitchers from which to choose and lots of bats to sort through.

Pitching

With such a small slate, there's no reason not to touch on all arms. We'll start in Denver, as LAD's Walker Buehler ($9,300) is the day's highest-priced option. There's little room for error, and while Buehler fanned 15 across 18.0 innings in Coors last year, allowing eight runs (4.00 ERA), why risk it? The only reason to is everyone else won't, but there's just too little upside. His adversary, Jon Gray ($7,500) had a nice 26.1 percent strikeout rate last year at home, and has fanned 51 Dodgers over his last 49.0 innings against them, but the Dodger offense looks too hot to go against. Per usual, bats are preferred in Denver.

David Price ($9,000) at Arizona and J.A. Happ ($8,700) at Baltimore are the obvious pivots. Happ was dominant on the road last year, posting a 27.1 percent fan rate and 3.65 xFIP, and with the Yankees being huge -190 favorites, Happ's ownership will be high, with seemingly good reason. Price had a 3.95 xFIP at home and away last year, with an equally similar 24.5 percent whiff rate. He's always been streaky, and coming off of a nine-strikeout outing, he'll get a D'Backs' side that fans 25.0 percent of the time against lefties. Cole Hamels ($7,800) rounds out the top names, but I'm not a fan against the potent Brewers.

Corbin Burnes ($7,300) vs. CHC, Sandy Alcantara ($7,100) at ATL, and Aaron Brooks ($7,000) at HOU all made at least 39 FDP in their first starts, and face matchups that don't seem likely to produce repeats, with Alcantara the least favorite.

Wade Miley ($6,600) and Dylan Bundy ($6,300) would be more appealing at this price range at DK, with two pitchers required. The matchups aren't great, but they aren't terrifying, especially for Bundy against an injury-laden Yankees offense, though he's a massive underdog. Houston checks in at -160, and if Miley can make it through a second turn, he'll be good for 20 to 30 points.

The bottom tier is where we see a likely high-owned Kyle Wright ($6,100) against Miami. The Braves offense is on fire at home, and after seeing Max Fried's growth from his first to second start, its fair to hope for the same jump from Wright. He has high upside with his pure stuff, and the matchup and high win percentage make him a play for cash and GPP lineups with major salary relief. Luke Weaver ($5,700) gets his name mentioned as promised to round out the 12 options.

Cliffs: Happ and Wright make for chalk, and rightfully so. Buehler, Gray for GPP low ownership and Miley for low ceiling salary relief.

Key Values/Chalk

As mentioned above, it all starts in Denver. The Dodgers are white hot, scoring 65 runs in eight games. Cody Bellinger ($5,000) has already homered six times, including one Friday night, but he had only two long balls in 52 at bats previously at Coors. Joc Pederson ($4,400) should return to the lineup with righty Gray throwing, while Max Muncy ($4,400) and Enrique Hernandez ($4,400) are preferred choices. Corey Seager ($3,700) could provide a bit of a discount buy in. The usual Rockie options remain chalk as well. Nolan Arenado ($4,500), Charlie Blackmon ($4,400), Trevor Story ($4,200) and David Dahl ($4,000). In some form, you'll want multiple pieces here.

With Luke Weaver an afterthought above, pieces of a struggling Boston side still seem prudent. Weaver allowed a .363 wOBA and 4.88 xFIP to lefties last year, leaving Andrew Benintendi ($4,300), Mitch Moreland ($3,300) and Jackie Bradley Jr. ($2,600) as contrarian options to the usual Mookie Betts ($4,900) and J.D. Martinez ($5,100) building blocks.

Anyone expect Luke Voit ($4,700) to be priced above Aaron Judge ($4,500), ever? Judge is still long-ball dependent, but he's got a career .926 OPS at Camden Yards. Yankee injuries leave regular playing time for D.J. LaMahieu ($3,500) and Brett Gardner ($3,300), while the O's counter with an overlooked Jonathan Villar ($3,400) as their top bat. He's hit safely in every game but one and is grossly under-appreciated.

There aren't many secrets with the smaller player pool, but other sub $3,500 options with regular opportunities include Carlos Correa ($3,200), Ben Zobrist ($3,200), Rafael Devers ($3,200), Ian Desmond ($3,100) and Wilson Contreras ($3,100)

Stacks

Atlanta Braves vs. Sandy Alcantara; Ronald Acuna Jr. ($4,400), Nick Markakis ($3,700), Ozzie Albies ($4,200): The top of the Braves lineup is struggling, so a nontraditional 4-5-6 stack continues to be the avenue into a hot lineup. It starts with Acuna, who isn't swinging well but did homer Friday. He simply owns the Marlins, going deep seven times while driving in 18 in 73 at bats against them last year. Markakis entered Friday with a .405 wOBA after posting a .379 number in last year's first month, and Albies is equally as hot, with Friday being his first hitless game of the year despite multiple hard hit balls. Dansby Swanson ($3,000) and Brian McCann ($2,300) are also in play, the latter likely back in the lineup after Tyler Flowers ($2,000) caught Friday.

Milwaukee Brewers vs. Cole Hamels; Christian Yelich ($5,000), Lorenzo Cain ($4,000), Jesus Aguilar ($3,700): Putting pieces around a Yelich build seems automatic, but with plus options in Colorado, this could be slightly overlooked. All three of these bats had at least a .389 wOBA against southpaws in 2018, and the power upside Aguilar needs to provide gives this trio upside, while Cain and Yelich provide it a very stable combined floor.

Houston Astros vs. Aaron Brooks; Jose Altuve ($3,800), Michael Brantley ($3,500), Carlos Correa ($3,200): On name recognition, the combined price screams value stack. In their prime, these are all 4k-plus priced players, with both Brantley and Altuve posing a .374 or higher wOBA against righties last year, while Correa has quietly provided an extra-base knock in four straight.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Chris Bennett plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: k30kittles, DraftKings: k30kittles.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Bennett
Bennett covers baseball, college football and college basketball for RotoWire. Before turning to fantasy writing, he worked in scouting/player development for the Atlanta Braves and Montreal Expos. He's also a fan of the ACC.
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