The FantasyLabs MLB Player Models house numerous data points to help you construct your MLB DFS rosters.
They house our floor, median, and ceiling projections for each player, but that’s just the beginning of what you’ll find inside. You’ll also find our Trends tool, stacking tool, and more.
Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 300 lineups, or use our Lineup Builder if you like to hand-build your teams for cash games or small-field tournaments.
Let’s dive into some MLB plays that stand out in our Player Models for today’s main slate.
Bargain Rating Picks
You might be asking: what is Bargain Rating, and why should I care?
Bargain Rating shows how much of a bargain a player is on one DFS site versus others. If a player is significantly cheaper on one site than the other, they will have a favorable Bargain Rating on the site where they’re more affordable and a poor Bargain Rating on the site where they’re more expensive. It’s a straightforward metric, but targeting players at reduced price tags is almost always a strong strategy in DFS.
Bargain Rating strongly correlates with player value, which you can quickly see with our predictive projected Plus/Minus metric.
Seeing how Plus/Minus helps you project how many points a player is expected to score compared to what their salary implies them to score, this is a good company for Bargain Rating.
MLB DFS DraftKings Bargain Value
Jeimer Candelario ($2,900): Third Baseman, Washington Nationals
The top four hitters in projected Plus/Minus are all from the Nationals. Leading the way is switch-hitter Jeimer Candelario who is projected to bat No. 3 in the Nationals lineup. In his first season with the Nationals, Candelario has five hits in 27 plate appearances with one home run. He will get an added boost playing at the hitter-friendly Coors Field.
Candelario is only $2,900, which provides a lot of salary savings, especially given that there are a couple of high-priced pitcher options on this slate. The Nationals have an implied total of 5.5 runs, which is the third-highest on the slate. Coors Field has a 100 Park Factor, and seeing this salary on Candelario is going to make him a popular option.
Rockies starting pitcher Jose Urena was rocked in his first outing of the season, allowing four earned runs, and one home run in only 2.1 innings pitched. In eight home starts at Coors Field last season, Urena had a 6.30 ERA while allowing eight home runs. Candelario will get plenty of opportunities to capture fantasy points in this cupcake matchup.
Miguel Vargas ($2,400): Second Baseman, Los Angeles Dodgers
After sitting out the last two games due to a thumb injury, Dodgers second baseman Miguel Vargas is expected back in the lineup as the No. 6 hitter. Finding a hitter on this loaded Dodgers lineup at $2,400 is a steal. He has the highest projected Plus/Minus of all hitters that are not on the Nationals, which is saying a lot for this five-game slate.
Vargas has recorded double-digit DraftKings points in three of his last four games played. He is tied for the most Pro Trends among hitters with seven and has a 96% Bargain Rating. Playing on this Dodgers lineup and batting in the middle of the pack provides Vargas will so much upside. The Dodgers have a 5.6 implied run total, which is second only to the Rockies.
Diamondbacks pitcher Madison Bumgarner faced the Dodgers in his first outing of the year, and it did not go well. He allowed five earned runs, one home run, and four walks in only four innings. In that matchup, Vargas went 1-for-2 with two walks and two runs scored. He is simply way too cheap with this matchup and opportunity.
MLB DFS Ceiling Projection Picks
Brandon Woodruff ($10,000 DraftKings, $10,500 FanDuel) vs. St. Louis Cardinals
According to the blending projections of FantasyLabs and THE BAT X, Brewers right-hander Brandon Woodruff has the highest ceiling of any pitcher. In his first start of the season, Woodruff through 97 pitchers and held the Cubs to just three hits and one earned run through six innings. He accumulated eight strikeouts and scored 25.1 DraftKings points.
The Cardinals have an implied total of 3.9 runs, as Woodruff has the highest strikeout projection on the slate at 5.93. He is the only player on DraftKings priced at $10,000, but it is deserving based on what he has pitched in the past. Last year, Woodruff recorded a career-high 13 wins and only four losses, as he had a remarkable 30.6% strikeout rate.
The Brewers are cruising right now with a 5-1 record, as the Cardinals have been slow out of the gates and have lost their last three games. As a -135 favorite and a high strikeout projection, it should not be surprising that Woodruff is projected for the highest ownership of any pitcher on this slate.
Ronald Acuna Jr. ($6,200 DraftKings, $4,400 FanDuel) vs. San Diego Padres
The highest-priced batter on DraftKings and FanDuel is Braves superstar Ronald Acuna Jr. He also has the highest ceiling in both of the FantasyLabs and THE BAT X projections. With a slate-high 13.3 DraftKings points per game, Acuna Jr. has a career-high .613 slugging percentage. He is one of the most feared hitters in all of baseball.
The Braves are off to a red-hot 6-1 start, which is the best record in the National League. Acuna Jr. already has two home runs and two stolen bases through seven games. His ability to capture fantasy points in a variety of ways makes him the safest pay-up option on the slate. The Braves are another team who are projected for over five runs.
A matchup with Nick Martinez makes Acuna Jr. look even better. In his first outing, Martinez threw 101 pitches but allowed four earned runs while taking the loss against the Rockies. In his only start against the Braves last season, Martinez allowed four earned runs and three home runs. Acuna Jr. didn’t play in that game, but he’ll be loving this matchup tonight.
More MLB DFS Hitters and Pitchers
For this example, we created a 50/50 blend with THE BAT X and the FantasyLabs projections to pinpoint some hitters that are standing out with this blend.
Clayton Kershaw ($9,700 DraftKings, $10,800 FanDuel) at Arizona Diamondbacks
Clayton Kershaw’s ceiling isn’t far from Brandon Woodruff, and even though pairing them together on DraftKings is ideal, it will leave an average of only $3,787 for all batters. The 35-year-old had a 12-3 record last season with a very impressive 2.28 ERA. Kershaw’s strikeout rate has dipped a little bit over the years, but 27.8% is still respectable.
Similar to Woodruff, the veteran southpaw had a great first outing against the Diamondbacks. He allowed one earned run and four hits through six innings while accumulating nine strikeouts. Kershaw did all of that work in only 76 pitches as his projected pitch count is expected to rise to 79.1 pitches. He has a chance to repeat that performance tonight.
The Dodgers have won three-straight games and are a -212 favorite, which is the highest on the slate. Kershaw has the third-highest Bargain Rating among all pitchers on DraftKings, where he does feel more of a value at $9,700. Behind a loaded offensive lineup, Kershaw won’t have to do much to record a 2-0 start to the season.
Shohei Ohtani ($6,100 DraftKings, $4,200 FanDuel) vs. Toronto Blue Jays
Shohei Ohtani is another ceiling hitter who is off to a relatively hot start with two home runs on six hits thus far. With a .286 ISO and a .405 wOBA, Ohtani is picking up right where he left off after back-to-back monster seasons, which resulted in one American League MVP. With first baseman and outfielder eligibility, Ohtani is easy to fit into all lineup builds.
Among all of the pitchers on the slate, Chris Bassitt probably had the worst first outing against the Cardinals. He allowed nine earned runs, 10 hits, and an absurd four four home runs. Each of those home runs came against left-handed batters, which is a great sign for Ohtani, who has a .281 ISO against right-handed pitchers in his career.
Acuna Jr. has double the projected ownership of Ohtani, which makes the left-handed slugger a great contrarian pay-up option. Expect another ceiling performance for Ohtani in this elite matchup against Bassitt.