FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks and Helper: Saturday 6/15/24

Austin Swaim
Austin SwaimASwaim3
FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks and Helper: Saturday 6/15/24

Our daily fantasy helper is available every day to analyze FanDuel's main slate and help give you a starting point when you're building lineups.

Be sure to also incorporate numberFire's great tools into your research process, including daily projections, the latest starting lineups and weather, and batting and pitching heat maps to find the best matchups.

Let's check out the top options on today's main slate.

Note: All MLB odds come from FanDuel Sportsbook. All stats come from FanGraphs and Baseball Savant unless noted otherwise.


Pitchers to Target

Shota Imanaga ($10,300)

This Saturday slate seems nearly designed for daily fantasy. It's tremendous how we've been left without a can't miss pitcher or stack on the entire slate. Still, among the aces at play, Shota Imanaga ($10,300) should be one of the more popular choices.

With wind blowing in at Wrigley, Imanaga draws the St. Louis Cardinals. St. Louis is an odd matchup for these purposes with the the league's third-worst OPS against lefties (.622) yet also its seventh-lowest strikeout rate (17.8%). While we can presume the Chicago Cubs' new star southpaw to have a nice day, the exact number of whiffs is hard to project.

Don't get me wrong; Shota gets plenty of those on his own. Imanaga's 15.3% swinging-strike rate would be tied for second in MLB if it qualified at this stage, and he's put together tremendous ERA indicators, too, behind a 3.24 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA) and 3.09 expected ERA (xERA).

Mike Imanaga II, as the legend would prefer, has otherwise topped 35 FanDuel points in seven of his last nine starts. I'm starting here in cash games or single-entry tournaments.

Charlie Morton ($8,900)

Though never an easy projection, Charlie Morton ($8,900) seems to once again be shaking off a slow start in his age-40 season.

All told, Morton's been a fairly pedestrian pitcher this season. His 4.12 ERA is nearly identically supported by SIERA (3.96) and xERA (4.19) with a strikeout rate (23.6%) that's entirely serviceable. It's been a true feast-or-famine proposition when he's allowed four-plus earned markers in four starts and trended toward quality starts in the rest. The Tampa Bay Rays figure to project him for the latter.

Tampa's lineup is living up to its name value a bit more than they did in 2023. They've posted the league's 3rd-worst OPS against righties (.646) with its 10th-highest strikeout rate (23.8%). Key returns of Josh Lowe and Brandon Lowe are noteworthy -- but not to the extent we avoid this lineup otherwise.

Morton's 32.5 projected fantasy points, per our daily MLB projections, is right among other top options on the slate at a sub-$9,000 salary. He's an intriguing pivot if a high-salaried stack catches your eye.

Others to Consider

Stacks to Target

San Francisco Giants

In general, Patrick Sandoval isn't a pitcher I love to oppose with a stack. However, desperate times call for desperate measures.

Sandoval's 5.23 ERA is supported by a 4.01 SIERA, and he's got a suboptimal 36.2% hard-hit rate allowed and 0.87 HR/9 for offense. Yet, righties keep delivering with a .328 wOBA and .741 OPS against him, and the Giants sport plenty of those.

Plus, when Sandoval leaves, the Angels' third-worst bullpen by xFIP (4.56) won't hurt the argument for the G-Men.

Any stack of San Francisco against a lefty has to start with Heliot Ramos ($3,600), who is pummeling them for a 1.479 OPS across 40 plate appearances at this stage. Matt Chapman ($2,900), Michael Conforto ($2,800), and Jorge Soler ($2,700) also sport a wRC+ of 135 or better in the split, so this stack is deep in the middle of the order.

Coming off an 8-6 loss on Friday, the Gigantes stood out right away to get back on the horse.

Washington Nationals

I wish wind was favorable in D.C., but otherwise, the upstart Nationals offense might be another solid place to turn today.

Washington's 4.62-run implied team total is third-highest on the slate as they get set for a date with Trevor Rogers and the Miami Marlins. Rogers is certainly a more cut-and-dry case than Sandoval, per a 5.20 xERA. He's allowed a hard-hit ball on 46.3% of those in play, and it's never a good thing when a pitch-to-contact sinkerballer has a HR/9 north of one (1.16).

Plus, Miami's bullpen (4.22 xFIP) has been one of the bottom 10 in baseball once he departs.

I end up stacking Nats more frequently than you'd hope because C.J. Abrams ($3,500) has a .900 OPS or better in both splits with stolen-base upside, yet against lefties, Lane Thomas ($3,000), Nick Senzel ($2,700), and utilityman Ildemaro Vargas ($2,500) also sport an .800 OPS or better against southpaws.

The Baltimore Orioles and Chicago Cubs have higher implied totals than Washington, but I'm not sure they're in better spots -- especially with the direction of wind in Chicago today.

Others to Consider

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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.