Welcome to our MLB DFS Building Blocks, DraftKings and FanDuel picks for 5/2/22! In this article, I’ll break down by top overall plays for today’s main slate. Last year was an extremely big year for the Karma team in MLB, and we are looking to continue that success in 2022. I will be providing Core Plays for every main slate (and day baseball) this season — you can gain access to that as well as our premium discord here. You can also try out the Core Plays package with a $5 daily pass. Let’s get to the plays…
I feel like I write Lopez up every start, and I’m installing him as my number one option tonight against the Diamondbacks. Arizona has been one of the best teams to attack in all of baseball this season — they’re striking out over 25% of the time vs right-handed pitching and outside of Jordan Luplow, every batter in the projected lineup owns a strikeout rate over 20%. Lopez has been his usual self this season with low walks, and a 27% strikeout rate while maintaining a 47% ground ball rate. He’s expensive and will definitely be owned, but this is a spot where I won’t overthink things and he is locked and loaded in my main team tonight.
Gallen and Lopez are above the field for me today, and I feel very good about the spot for both of them. Gallen was pretty limited throughout Spring Training, but he has been very good for Arizona since making his return. He has one of the lowest xERA’s in baseball at 2.01 and that comes with a solid 25% strikeout rate. As a team, Miami strikes out a ton vs right-handed pitching and outside of Jazz Chisholm and Jesus Sanchez — I really see no batters to fear here. I think Gallen is way too cheap tonight for the form he has been in and he’s viable in all formats on Monday.
I wrote up Paddack in his last start and actually used him in my main lineup — he was predictably low-owned, as well. It seems like a lot of people are looking at the Orioles for cheap bats tonight, but I just don’t even see a reason for that. For starts, Gallen is so cheap that will already have money to spend on bats just by using him as your SP2. Secondly, the Orioles have been pretty terrible offensively and they carry just a 3.5 implied team total into tonight’s slate. And Finally, Chris Paddack has been legit good for the Twins. He isn’t a dominant strikeout pitcher by any means with just a 22% strikeout rate — but he owns just a 2.16 expected ERA. He doesn’t walk batters, and he’s been great in terms of contact management. If you want a lower-owned option that Gallen — look no further than Paddack in this quality match-up.
I’ve taken a mental note to play Tucker more going forward as he appears locked in at the plate. The results haven’t fully been there yet for him, but the statcast data tells us the whole story. This season, Tucker ranks top-25 in all of baseball barrels per plate appearance (9.2) and second-overall in average fly ball distance (223). This tells us he is barreling the ball up at a high rate, and hitting the ball far, which can only means homeruns are soon coming his way. Despite the lefty lefty match-up tonight, Tucker actually owns the highest ISO on the team vs left-handed pitching since the start of last season (.267). Gonzales is a pitcher that likes to pound the strike zone, and Tucker will see pitches to hit tonight.
Kepler is a fantastic value tonight against Tyler Wells and the Orioles bullpen. Wells profiles worse against right-handed batters, but he still allows a 36% hard-hit rate to lefties along with 50% fly-balls. Kepler hits the ball hard and in the air vs righties, and has one of the best isolated power numbers in the lineup with a .232 mark since the start of last season. He also crushes fast balls, which Wells throws 58% of the time to left-handed batters. We have seen Kepler post multiple-HR games before, and these are the types of spots I like to use him in. He’s atop my one-off board on Monday night.
Pablo Lopez and Zac Gallen both throw seven shutout innings!
Written by Ben Hossler (Follow @BenHossler on Twitter)