3 Under-the-Radar MLB FanDuel Plays for 7/19/19
When being contrarian in daily fantasy sports, there's a fine line between taking a calculated risk and being reckless. But differentiating your lineups from everyone else is the name of the game if you plan on taking down one of those highly lucrative DFS tournaments. Whether it's because of Vegas totals, other options at a given position, or some gem you've found that everyone is overlooking, we can always find potential under-owned plays if we look hard enough.
Here are three such players to consider branching out for on FanDuel's main slate.
Marcus Stroman, P, Toronto Blue Jays
FanDuel Price: $6,800
As the trade deadline approaches, Marcus Stroman's name pops up more and more, but he still has games to pitch and tonight is a great spot for him.
This could be one of his final times he has to bolster his case for being traded and it couldn't be a better matchup since he is up against the Detroit Tigers, who are one of the worst teams in the league versus right-handed pitchers. Detroit comes in with a 75 wRC+ (30th in the league), .152 ISO (27th in the league), and a 26.2% strikeout rate (2nd worst in the league) versus right-handed pitchers this season. Numbers like this aren't new for the Tigers, as they've struggled with right-handed pitchers for a number of seasons now, something that has shown to be profitable in the past.
Stroman has been having an amazing season, allowing a .320 wOBA or lower to hitters of either handedness, a 34% hard-hit rate or lower to both, along with a 28% fly-ball rate or lower. He doesn't allow much hard contact and lives on his elite 57.9% ground-ball rate. That has allowed him to limit the damage and hold teams to three or fewer earned runs in 10 of his last 11 starts.
Yasmani Grandal, C, Milwaukee Brewers
FanDuel Price: $3,200
With 14 games on the slate and no Coors Field we should see ownership spread out tonight, leaving plenty of opportunities in tournaments for lower owned options. The Brewers are certainly set up to be a lower-owned team considering how many options are ahead of them on the implied total list and looking to Yasmani Grandal could bring super-low ownership. Catchers are always the lowest owned option simply because they generally produce the fewest fantasy points and you don't actually need to roster them.
Grandal should be a player you are actively targeting tonight, as he comes in with a .246 ISO, 49.7% hard-hit rate, 38.3% fly-ball rate, and has hit 13 of his 19 home runs against right-handed pitchers. He is also in the top 69th percentile or higher in exit velocity, hard-hit %, xwOBA, and xSLG, according to Baseball Savant. He is among the best hitting catchers in the league and should be rostered with full confidence tonight.
Brian Reynolds, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates
FanDuel Price: $3,100
Reynolds has a .396 wOBA, .167 ISO, and a 50.4% hard-hit rate versus right-handed pitchers are good numbers for any hitter, let alone a rookie. That is where we see Reynolds come in as the second half of the season is fully underway and with a very modest price tag tonight, he can fit into almost any lineup.
A 5.00 implied run total for the Pirates tonight is certainly interesting since they are home -- which isn't the best hitter's park -- but up against Jake Arrieta, who has a 5.35 xFIP, 40.5% hard-hit rate, and a 22.9% home-run-to-fly-ball ratio versus lefty hitters this season. Arrieta has allowed eight or more hits in three of his last four starts, along with four or more earned runs in those same three games. He is getting hit all over the place and with Reynolds holding a .396 wOBA, the opportunity should be there for him to reach base again tonight.