Welcome in to Ben’s Building Blocks for DraftKings & FanDuel! This is a free article written daily to identify my top-overall DFS plays for cash game and small-field contests on both DraftKings and FanDuel. I truly appreciate everyone that reads and supports the content. If you’d like to support further you can click HERE to sign-up for a MLB Premium package. This gets you access to my Core Plays daily — allowing you to tail my builds, access the premium Discord channels and view our DFS Projections Portal. We’ve been on fire already this MLB season, and there’s no better time to sign-up. With that being said, let’s dive into today’s slate…
Above is an example of my MLB Core Plays for the 4/27 slate
I absolutely love what I’ve seen from Gray Rod since joining the big league club, and he checks in as my top-overall option against the Kansas City Royals. Rodriguez has shown above-average strikeout stuff — punching out 32% of batters faced with over 12% swinging strikes. There are plenty of K’s to be had in this Royals lineup, with their projected lineup owning a 27% strikeout rate against right-handed pitching this season. The one thing Rodriguez has struggled with is walks, but that won’t be a huge concern against this team that’s walking under 7% of the time since last season. There’s legitimately only one batter I’m remotely scared of on this Royals team, and it pleases me that Rodriguez carries just a 15% ownership projection in the early run of projections. He’s my favorite play today, and viable in all formats on both sites.
Kirby will likely be the chalk of the slate, matching up with the Oakland Athletics who are legitimately one of the worst teams I’ve ever seen. If we isolate just this season, their projected lineup sports a 24% strikeout rate, and if we look at the last two seasons worth of data we get a .295 wOBA and 25% strikeouts…yikes! Kirby isn’t a dominant strikeout pitcher, but a 23% strikeout rate since the start of last season will certainly play against this lineup and it comes with sub-2% walks this season. His control is elite, and even if he doesn’t get a dominant-level of swing and miss he does more than enough to have success against this lineup. Given that he doesn’t have that huge K upside, I don’t think he’s a must play in GPPs, but he most likely should be the starting point for cash games and single entry on Thursday afternoon.
I also want to note that I have some interest in Drew Rucinski for $5,000 on DK as a GPP SP2. He doesn’t have crazy strikeout ability, but he doesn’t need to do much at his price-tag and he got pretty unlucky from the looks of it in that first start. For only $5K, it allows you to prioritize the bats on a pretty big-sized slate.
Rutschman continues to be one of the best young hitters in baseball, and he hasn’t even come close to his peak yet. He’s top-15 in xBA this season, without hitting the ball super hard and a pretty modest barrel rate. Much like Wander Franco, I expect the barrels and hard-hits to come down the road but for now he still is a very valuable fantasy player. He’s often under-owned due to his high price tag at catcher, and I love the spot against Jordan Lyles today. Lyles is allowing above-average power to both sides of the plate this year — and relies heavily on his fastball. Adley is the best fastball hitter on the Orioles, and using him as a one-off or in a mini-stack with Ryan Mountcastle will likely be my strategy on Thursday.
Wisdom and the Cubs will likely be the top spot for a stack after Coors Field on Thursday afternoon. They match up with Patrick Corbin, who once again has struggled with power this season allowing at least one homerun in all but one start. Since the start of last season, he’s giving up over a .380 wOBA to right-handed hitters along with a .200 ISO. Patrick Wisdom ranks second in baseball with 11 homeruns this season, and we know that he has tons of power. He also matches up well with Corbin’s pitch mix — over 80% of Corbin’s pitches to righties this season have been sliders or sinkers. Wisdom owns pretty good numbers against both pitches. but especially sinkers. He has the best numbers on the team against the pitch and that’s why he checks in as my top Cubs bat today.
Ben’s Stat of the Day
Both Adley Rutschman and Ryan Mountcastle rank top-20 in xwOBA this season, while both own worse actual wOBA numbers than their expected numbers. They’ve both been very good, but are actually supposed to get even better as the season continues on.
Written by Ben Hossler (Follow @BenHossler on Twitter)