FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks and Helper: Sunday 7/7/24

Austin Swaim
Austin SwaimASwaim3
FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks and Helper: Sunday 7/7/24

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

Be sure to incorporate our MLB DFS projections -- which are powered by numberFire -- into your research process. numberFire also has the latest starting lineups and weather as well as heat maps to help you 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

Nathan Eovaldi ($9,700)

Sunday's pitching slate is as sketchy as you'll find on a full slate. Tarik Skubal is in a bottom-three park for pitchers, so I'll look to Nathan Eovaldi ($9,700) in cash-game formats.

The Texas Rangers' right-hander finally showed some of the dominant form from the team's World Series run in his last outing. He posted 7.0 scoreless innings with six punchouts. That lowered his expected ERA (xERA) to 3.45 on the year.

The most appealing news might be a third straight start over 90 pitches. He's finally back to a depth in games that can matter in DFS.

Today's matchup against the Tampa Bay Rays isn't perfect, but it'll do given the circumstances. Tampa's .687 OPS against right-handed pitching is 10th-worst in baseball over the last 30 days, and they've struck out at (tied for) the 11th-highest rate in the split (23.9%).

The Rays' 3.52 implied team total is the second-lowest on the main slate, and we'll discuss why the lower target is a bit more vulnerable than "Nitro".

Edward Cabrera ($8,300)

On a slate projected for offense to win out, I absolutely see the appeal of Edward Cabrera ($8,300) over Eovaldi in tournaments.

As mentioned, Cabrera's opponent, the Chicago White Sox, actually have a lower implied team total at 3.46. That's because they're the White Sox, but Chicago's 83 wRC+ and 23.9% strikeout rate against righties in the past month is a bit more competitive than their season-long numbers otherwise suggest.

Don't get me wrong; they're still a solid matchup, and Cabrera is a high-upside hurler that could dominate them. The MLB The Show legend has a 32.7% chase rate, 32.0% whiff rate, and 32.0% strikeout rate that would all be 80th percentile or better across MLB if they qualified.

He's just generally less reliable than an Eovaldi -- mostly due to a 14.4% walk rate. Yet, a 1.27 HR/9 rate allowed is also indicative of ill-timed mistakes.

Cabrera makes his first start since May 7th today. If you have high-salaried offenses front of mind, he definitely is worth considering when there isn't an elite, top-shelf option you're passing on to roster him.

Others to Consider

  • Tarik Skubal ($10,700)
    • In any other ballpark, Skubal would be that elite, top-shelf option. He's still worth considering given the Cincinnati Reds' 81 wRC+ and 23.9 K% against lefties in the past 30 days.
  • Sean Manaea ($8,500)
    • The Pittsburgh Pirates also don't love southpaws, posting an ugly .630 OPS against them in the past month. The enigmatic Manaea could style on them, but I wouldn't be shocked to see his 42.2% hard-hit rate allowed lit up, either.

Stacks to Target

Minnesota Twins

If there's one stack that stands out above the rest, it's the white-hot Minnesota Twins.

No opposing pitcher on the slate profiles to give up taters like Spencer Arrighetti of the Houston Astros. Arrighetti has coughed up 1.30 HR/9 already behind a 41.5% flyball and 39.5% hard-hit rate allowed -- and this is with three starts against the AL West, a division chock full of weak offenses for righties to pummel.

The Twins are far from one. Their .836 OPS against them in the past month is second-best in MLB. You could start anywhere in this stack, but Jose Miranda ($3,200) seems to just be dialed in at the dish. He's got an insane 291 wRC+ and .305 ISO against them in the past 30 days. Carlos Correa ($3,600), Willi Castro ($2,900), and Carlos Santana ($2,800) also make the grade with an OPS north of .800 in this time.

I generally don't like paying the popularity tax of an offense coming off 21 runs in two games, but Arrighetti should have minimal success on a warm day in the Twin Cities.

Chicago Cubs

After getting blanked on Saturday by a lefty, let's turn to the Chicago Cubs in the opposite split with slight wind blowing out at Wrigley Field.

Wind probably won't be a heavy factor in why they'd score on Jose Soriano, though. Soriano's 60.7% groundball rate is as good as it gets. The problem is just about everything else. The Los Angeles Angels' righty is 40th percentile or worse in strikeout rate, hard-hit rate allowed, barrel rate, and average exit velocity. If he's not working down in the zone, he's likely getting shelled.

Plus, the Angels' bullpen is a huge advantage for a Cubbies stack relative to others on this slate. L.A.'s bullpen xFIP is 4.65 in the past 30 days; the next-highest to target sits at 4.45 (St. Louis Cardinals) behind a solid starter.

This has been a tricky split for the Cubs, but Ian Happ ($3,300), Seiya Suzuki ($3,300), and Michael Busch ($2,700) all have an OPS north of .800 within it over the past month. I'd also throw out Cody Bellinger ($3,100) and Christopher Morel ($3,000) seem to have issues with strikeouts against righties, but Soriano's low-whiff style could enhance their viability at the dish.

The Halos had surrendered at least five runs in six straight before yesterday's masterpiece. Expect regression to the mean today.

Others to Consider

  • Washington Nationals
    • As mentioned, the Cardinals' bullpen is struggling, but Kyle Gibson is a decent sinkerballer when the Nats have struggled facing RHP across the board -- except yesterday. I'm inclined to leave them behind.
  • Los Angeles Angels
    • Hayden Wesneski's 4.80 xERA is a friendly target on the other side of Wrigley for a team that's been sneaky good against righties in the past 30 days (110 wRC+).

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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.