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MLB Baseball DFS Advice

DFS MLB Baseball Picks for May 18, 2021

Zack Wheeler
PHILADELPHIA, PA - MAY 01: Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the Major League Baseball game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Mets on May 1, 2021 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire)

We’ve got a 14-game slate for Monday. I believe that there is a free square on today’s slate but maybe I’m the fool. It will all be exposed later today. Due to the perceived free square at pitching, I was able to pay up for all the bats on the stack I wanted. Unfortunately, it’s baseball so anything can happen. There are a bunch of teams (MIA, NYM, COL, and ARI) that haven’t announced their pitchers yet so that could tilt the slate big time. DET, COL, CLE, PIT, and BAL are projected for fewer than four runs. NYY is the only team projected for at least five runs. COL is projected for fewer than three runs. MIA/PHI, NYM/ATL, WAS/CHC, MIL/KC, and ARI/LAD haven’t had their lines posted yet.

Some rain is expected in the MIL/KC, DET/SEA, and NYY/TEX games with the one in Texas with the biggest risk. 

Here’s our 50-50 MLB DFS lineup for 5/18/21 (using DraftKings Values)

 PitcherZack Wheeler $10,000
 Pitcher   
 CatcherMartin Maldonado $2,100
 First BaseYuli Gurriel $5,100
 Second Base   
 Third Base   
 Short StopCarlos Correa $5,000
 OutfieldTeoscar Hernandez $4,500
 Outfield   
 Outfield   
  
  

Salary Remaining          $100

Zack Wheeler ($10,000)

Wheeler has a 2.85 FIP and 11.3 percent swinging strike rate. He’s struck out 56 batters in 53.2 innings while only allowing four home runs. The Marlins are 6th in strikeouts and 28th in ISO against right-handed pitching.

Martin Maldonado ($2,100)

We are attacking Sean Manaea with righties today. The slash against righties this season is .326/.360/.488 compared to .095/.133/.238 against lefties. He’s given up four home runs to righties. The K/BB is 9 against lefties and 3.86 against righties and the strikeout rate is 40 percent versus 19.9 percent. Maldonado strikes out 35.5 percent of the time and the slash is only .155/.234/.258 but he’s super cheap and is part of the Astros stack. Plus, the Astros are on the road so they are guaranteed at-bats in the ninth inning. 

Yuli Gurriel ($5,100)

Gurriel is batting fifth for the Astros. He has seven home runs on the season and the plate discipline has been fantastic – 12.1 percent walk rate and 11.5 percent strikeout rate. The ISO is .231 while the slash is .322/.400/.552. In 72 plate appearances against lefties this season, the slash is .339/.403/.677 with a .339 ISO.

Carlos Correa ($5,000)

Correa is batting sixth for the Astros. He has six home runs on the season and the strikeout rate is only 16.8 percent. In 74 plate appearances against lefties, the slash is .313/.405/.406, although the ISO is only .094. He has a career .181 ISO against lefties.

Teoscar Hernandez ($4,500)

Eduardo Rodriguez has allowed a .274/.306/.487 slash and five of six home runs to righties this season. He does have a 25.8 percent strikeout rate against righties so it’s not all cupcakes and unicorns. Hernandez only has a 24.5 percent strikeout rate, which is way down from the 30 percent number posted last season. That said, he still has plenty of swing-and-miss to his game. When he connects, though, it’s sayonara. He has five home runs on the season with two stolen bases. The ISO is .189 but he’s a career .243 ISO batter. 

Now what do you get if you sign up now?
• Seven days free trial to read every and ALL of our content. 
• Full lineup support for the 50-50 lineup above
• A more risky full lineup for a GPP. 
• A number of alternative picks that you mix in for some variations on your core lineups.

Here’s our full 50-50 MLB DFS lineup for 5/18/21 (using DraftKings Values)

 PitcherZack Wheeler $10,000
 PitcherKris Bubic $4,000
 CatcherMartin Maldonado $2,100
 First BaseYuli Gurriel $5,100
 Second BaseJose Altuve $5,700
 Third BaseAlex Bregman $5,700
 Short StopCarlos Correa $5,000
 OutfieldTeoscar Hernandez $4,500
 OutfieldRobbie Grossman $4,000
 OutfieldAustin Meadows $3,800
  
  

Salary Remaining          $100

Kris Bubic ($4,000)

I believe this is the free square today. Bubic is minimum priced but he’s the starter and facing a Brewers team that is 5th in strikeouts and 24th in ISO against right-handed pitching. The swinging strike rate is 12.9 percent and the FIP is 3.21. He did begin the season in the bullpen but over the last two games, he’s started both and gone 5.2 and five innings, striking out eight without allowing an earned run. The pitch count has increased from 71 to 80 so there’s a chance he could go a little longer if he’s efficient with his pitches.

Jose Altuve ($5,700)

Altuve is batting leadoff for the Astros.  He has four home runs and one stolen base. The walk rate is 9.4 percent while the strikeout rate is only 13 percent. Against left-handed pitching, the Astros are 29th in strikeouts as a team. The slash for Altuve is .303/.362/.451 with a .148 ISO. In 64 plate appearances against lefties this season, the slash is .379/.422/.466 but the ISO is only .086. 

Alex Bregman ($5,700)

Bregman bats third for the Astros. He has five home runs on the season. The ISO is only .167 but Bregman has a career .234 mark. The slash is a healthy .311/.381/.477. Like the rest of the Astros hitters, the plate discipline numbers are fantastic – 9.5 percent walk rate and 15.6 percent strikeout rate. In 71 plate appearances against lefties, the slash is .339/.423/.532 with a .194 ISO.

Robbie Grossman ($4,000)

I had a healthy $4,000 left for each of the last two outfield spots. Thank you, Bubic! Grossman bats leadoff for the Tigers and has four home runs and seven stolen bases on the season. He’s better against lefties than righties but I like his order in the lineup, ability to score fantasy goodies in multiple ways, and Justin Dunn has a 5.1 FIP with an 8.5 percent swinging strike rate. 

Austin Meadows ($3,800)

Meadows bats second for the Rays and has eight home runs and one stolen base on the season. The walk rate is 11.4 percent but the strikeout rate is 25.9 percent and the slash is only .211/.313/.458. The ISO is .246, though, and the BABIP is .237 so some good fortune could be on the horizon. He gets to face Matt Harvey, who has been good to start the season but the HR/FB is a paltry 6.8 percent. It was 37.5 percent last season and 22.4 percent the year before. The GB/FB rate is still 1.32 so some regression could be in store. 

Alternative Moves…

Randall Grichuk – OF ($4,200 DK) – I went over Eduardo Rodriguez’s numbers against righties in the Teoscar blurb. Grichuk has been great to start this season with six home runs and a 19 percent strikeout rate. In 35 plate appearances against left-handed pitching, the slash is .371/.371/.657 with a .286 ISO.

Blake Snell – P ($8,900 DK)    

Snell has struggled to start the season. The FIP is 4.36 despite striking out 49 batters in 34.1 innings. The big bugaboo has been the 24 walks. Yuck. But now he gets a Rockies team that is inept away from Coors Field. They are last in home runs and runs scored. 

Go win your lineup and tell us how you did. Twitter (@FantasyDFSX) is a good place for that.

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