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 Thursday’s five-game 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
Miles Mastrobuoni ($3,000): Second Base/Outfield, Chicago Cubs
We are going way down the salary chart for our first value pick, highlighting Mastrobuoni as our top bargain pick on Thursday’s slate. The Cubs utilityman has some solid underlying metrics, supporting more production from the plate.
Mastrobuoni has been used sparingly this season, but he’s made his time in the bigs count. The 27-year-old has an above-average 42.7% hard-hit rate and 30.8% sweet spot percentage, illustrating his ability to make good contact. Moreover, he’s got an ideal launch angle of 14.7 degrees. Combining those metrics, Mastrobuoni should see significant increases to his .222 slugging percentage, evidenced by a .262 xSLG.
There’s a good chance it all comes together for Mastrobuoni against Carlos Carrasco on Thursday night. The Mets pitcher has some of the worst analytics in the majors, ranking among the bottom 10% in barrel rate, expected slugging percentage, and expected ERA. Mastrobuoni has been better than his traditional stats indicate, making him a perfect buy-low candidate tonight.
Adam Frazier ($2,800): Second Base, Baltimore Orioles
The Orioles offense has been firing lately, recording five or more runs in six straight outings. They are poised for another strong showing at Yankee Stadium, and Frazier projects as one of the best values on the board.
Frazier is producing over his recent sample. The eight-year veteran comes into Thursday’s rubber match on a seven-game hitting streak, totaling 11 hits, seven RBI, and five runs scored over that stretch. More impressively, the O’s second baseman has two home runs, a double, and a triple, elevating his season-long slugging percentage to .430.
The Yankees are sending Clarke Schmidt and his bloated 6.00 ERA to the mound tonight, setting the Orioles up for another successful outing. Frazier has been one of the best hitters in the MLB over the past week, but he remains undervalued in this AL East showdown.
MLB DFS Ceiling Projection Picks
Aaron Nola ($9,500 DraftKings, $9,700 FanDuel) vs. Atlanta Braves
Although he hasn’t matched last year’s career-best metrics, Nola remains a force on the mound. The Phillies ace had a rough start to the season but has flourished in his recent starts.
Nola is coming off his second quality start over his past three outings. The former All-Star tossed 7.0 innings of two-run ball versus the Cubs last time out, striking out a season-best ten in the win. That’s been his standard this month, with Nola decreasing his ERA to 4.10, with 0.99 walks and hits per inning pitched and an 8.6 K/9 rate.
Circumstances favor Nola and the Phillies in tonight’s National League showdown. While the Braves have a potent offense, they’ve been much more susceptible against right-handed pitching. They’re just 18th in wRC+ in that split and have the ninth-highest strikeout rate. Nola has a five-pitch mix to keep batters guessing, inducing a 27.7% whiff rate on three of his five offerings.
Nola is also showing some value using our PrizePicks and Underdog Fantasy simulations table, specifically in his ability to limit free passes:
Aaron Judge ($6,400 DraftKings, $4,500 FanDuel) vs. Baltimore Orioles
If anyone was worried about Judge’s slow start to the season, you can officially put your concerns to bed. Since returning from injury, Judge has been on a torrid pace, reclaiming his spot as MLB’s OPS leader. We’re expecting more of the same tonight against Kyle Gibson.
Over the last 15 days, Judge has compiled a scorching 1.423 OPS with eight homers, two doubles, and 15 base hits. Predictably, his surge has yielded a ton of run production for the Yankees, with the reigning MVP driving in 17 and coming around to score 11.
From a sustainability perspective, there’s no reason to doubt Judge maintains his current form. The three-time Silver Slugger remains below his expected slugging percentage and continues to rank in the 99th percentile in hard-hit rate, average exit velocity, and barrel rate.
Yankee Stadium isn’t a pitcher-friendly venue, and Gibson has struggled to avoid contact this campaign. The O’s probable starter ranks in the 27th percentile in expected slugging percentage and the 29th percentile in expected ERA. Judge has terrorized opponents lately, and Gibson offers no relief for the Orioles.
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More MLB DFS Hitters and Pitchers
One of the great features of being a FantasyLabs Pro member is the option to purchase additional items in the FantasyLabs Marketplace.
A new addition to our MLB projections is THE BAT X from Derek Carty of RotoGrinders. With this purchase, you can use his projections alone or create aggregate projections within our Player Models.
For this example, we created a 50/50 blend with THE BAT X and the FantasyLabs projections to pinpoint some hitters standing out with this blend.
Logan Gilbert ($9,900 DraftKings, $10,600 FanDuel) vs. Oakland Athletics
Generally, anybody facing the A’s has a chance to excel. That’s even more likely for a stud pitcher Gilbert. The hard-throwing righty has been dominant this month, pitching to a 2.04 FIP and a 10.73 K/9 in May.
No one will be surprised to hear that the A’s rank among the three worst teams in OPS, runs scored, and strikeouts. Worse, they have an embarrassing .449 OPS over the last week. Gilbert has been an unstoppable force, and the A’s should offer little resistance.
Harrison Bader ($3,800 DraftKings, $3,200 FanDuel) vs. Baltimore Orioles
If you’re looking to extract maximum value from an outfield spot, look no further than Bader. The Yankees’ centerfielder has five hits over his previous five contests, clubbing two long fly balls and driving in four. He’s been a mainstay in the heart of the batting order and should thrive against Gibson.
Strong underlying metrics support Bader’s recent uptick in production. The former third-round pick has a pristine 21.7-degree launch angle and an above-average 9.1% barrel rate. Consequently, he’s producing the best expected slugging and sweet spot percentages of his career at .434 and 36.4%, respectively.
According to our projections, New York is one of the top-rated offensive teams on the evening docket. Bader is an inexpensive outfielder option with an elite ceiling and would be a worthy addition to any roster.
Teoscar Hernandez ($3,900 DraftKings, $2,800 FanDuel) vs. Oakland Athletics
Teoscar Hernandez presents as another solid under-the-radar fantasy option on tonight’s slate. The Mariners outfielder sits in the meaty part of the batting order and thrives against southpaws.
Irrespective of handedness, Hernandez is due for a breakout performance. The two-time Silver Slugger ranks in the 84th percentile in hard-hit rate and 82nd percentile in barrel percentage. As such, he’s posting another top-end expected slugging percentage, sitting among the top 75% of batters with a .472 mark.
Still, Hernandez hasn’t lived up to those metrics early this season, falling below his expected metrics and further off career benchmarks. He’ll have a chance to begin his upward trajectory against JP Sears.
The A’s lefty gives up a .465 expected slugging percentage and 11.6% barrel rate, fitting with Hernandez’s elite profile and his .574 slugging percentage against southpaws. We’re anticipating Hernandez reaching his ceiling in the series finale against the Athletics.
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