3 FanDuel MLB DFS Value Plays for Wednesday 6/5/24

Aidan Cotter
Aidan CotterAidanCotterFD

Finding low-salary production is one way to get a leg up on the competition in MLB DFS.

Here are some value plays to target on FanDuel for today's main slate.

Advanced statistics courtesy of FanGraphs. Betting lines via the MLB odds at FanDuel Sportsbook. Betting odds as well as our projections -- which are powered by numberFire -- may change after this article is published.

MLB DFS Value Plays

Jameson Taillon, P, Cubs ($8,200)

After four strong outings to kick off the 2024 season, Jameson Taillon has struggled of late. Over his last four starts, Taillon has a 4.87 ERA and just 13 strikeouts compared to seven walks. He's cracked 20 FanDuel points only once in that stretch.

But the Chicago White Sox travel to Wrigley tonight, and they've been the antidote for struggling right-handers. Against righties, the White Sox rank dead last in all of wOBA (.273), OPS (.610), and wRC+ (75). They've struck out at a league-average clip (23.2%) but have the lowest rate of hard contact (27.4%) in the split.

Yes, Chicago's south siders roughed up Chicago Cubs ace Shota Imanaga last night. Andm yes, they just got Luis Robert off the injured list.

But this is still the White Sox we're talking about. They have the fourth-lowest implied total (3.69) on the slate while the Cubs are the day's biggest moneyline favorite (-190). That puts Taillon in a favorable spot to walk away with a win if he can make it through five innings -- something he's done in six of eight starts.

Granted, Taillon's underlying numbers aren't ideal, but it's hard to argue with his results thus far. He's yet to allow more than three runs in a game, and that's lead to a 2.84 ERA.

The ERA indicators -- 3.56 xERA, 4.47 xFIP, and 4.58 SIERA -- are kind of all over the place, but he's done a good job keeping the ball on the ground (45.9% GB%) and limiting barrels (5.4%). Even though a 15.4% K rate doesn't excite me, Taillon's 26.7% called + swinging strike rate (CSW%) is serviceable in a plus matchup.

He flashed decent upside with at least 30 FanDuel points in three of his first four starts and is averaging 32 FanDuel points per game at home. Against one of the best righty matchups in the league, Taillon's an intriguing value if you want to load up on high-salary bats.

Royce Lewis, 3B, Twins ($3,000)

Is Royce Lewis the greatest player of all time? Probably not... but don't tell him that.

After missing two months due to an Opening Day injury, Lewis returned in spectacular fashion last night. He homered and walked twice, netting 24.7 FanDuel points while maintaining his 1.000 batting average for the season.

Sure, Royce is only 3-for-3 on the year, but it's easy to get excited about him as a $3K one-off given his incredible (albeit, small) sample of MLB action.

Across 72 games and 285 plate appearances the last three seasons, Lewis is batting .315 with 19 home runs, 59 RBI, and six steals. If he maintained that pace over a 162-game season, Royce would have roughly 43 home runs, 97 RBI, and 14 steals. Pretty good!

It's not that simple, of course, but his profile supports that high-end production. Lewis has registered 11.0% barrel and 41.5% hard-hit rates for his career while striking out just 21.1% of the time. His career .405 wOBA would rank ninth this season.

So, after Lewis' electric return, I'm happy to deploy him again at Yankee Stadium -- the fourth-best venue for home runs, per Statcast Park Factors.

Lewis has +470 odds to hit a home run and +145 odds to record 2+ total bases on FanDuel Sportsbook. With the New York Yankees starting lefty Carlos Rodon, neither of those props feel farfetched.

Despite better results of late, Rodon still has a 4.48 xFIP and 4.09 SIERA for the season. He's in the 25th percentile or worse in barrel rate (9.4%) and hard-hit rate (42.9%) allowed, all while giving up the third-highest flyball rate (50.8%) among qualified starters.

On top of that, Rodon has permitted a .319 wOBA while posting a 4.72 xFIP against righties this season. Considering Lewis has a .396 wOBA against lefties for his career, this is a nice spot for him to outperform his salary.

Connor Joe, 1B/OF, Pirates ($2,900)

The Los Angeles Dodgers are starting lefty James Paxton tonight, so we can turn to the Pittsburgh Pirates for some under-the-radar value in DFS.

Despite a 3.29 ERA, Paxton's underlying numbers suggest he's a ticking time bomb. His ERA indicators -- 5.24 xERA, 5.39 xFIP, and 5.70 SIERA -- all point to him over-performing, and the batted-ball metrics back that up. His flyball rate is up compared to his career-average (42.6% to 35.7%), as are his barrel (8.2% to 6.3%) and hard-hit (40.4% to 38.6%) rates.

Even compared to last season, Paxton's average fastball velocity is down nearly 2.0 MPH, and that's played a role in both his K rate (14.2%) and CSW% (22.3%) dipping to career-lows marks.

Paxton has been bailed out by a .243 BABIP and 85.4% strand rate, but the rest of his profile screams regression.

The Pirates have several value bats I'm interested in, with Andrew McCutchen ($3,000), Bryan Reynolds ($2,900), Ke'Bryan Hayes ($2,500), and Henry Davis ($2,200) all running wOBAs north of .350 against lefties.

However, No. 3 hitter Connor Joe may be the most exciting of the bunch. Against lefties, Joe is sporting a .381 wOBA, .224 ISO, and .891 OPS. He's struck out at a measly 15.3% rate in the split.

It doesn't hurt that Joe is hitting .303 with four extra-base hits and eight runs over his last 10 games. He has +125 odds to record 2+ total bases and +115 odds to record a run tonight.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.