FanDuel MLB DFS Pitching Primer for Friday 5/10/24

Nicholas Vazquez
Nicholas Vazquez@nickvaz
FanDuel MLB DFS Pitching Primer for Friday 5/10/24

Nailing the pitcher slot is the first step to having success in MLB DFS on FanDuel.

While it's possible to cash if you get a bad outing from a starter, it's markedly easier to do so when you get a good or excellent showing from your pitcher, and it's darn near impossible to take down a contest without a big score from your hurler.

Weighing the importance of a pitcher's skill, salary, matchup and park factors is the game within the game in MLB DFS. This piece is your home for a breakdown of the top pitching options on today's main slate.

All betting references come from the MLB odds at FanDuel Sportsbook. All stats come from FanGraphs and Baseball Savant unless noted otherwise.

MLB DFS Pitcher Picks

Top Options

Ranger Suarez, Philadelphia Phillies ($11,100)

I wouldn't suspect that Ranger Suarez ($11,100) would have this high of a salary or that I would want to roster at that salary.

That speaks to how good Suarez has been this season. He has a 2.61 expected FIP (xFIP) and a 2.62 skill interactive ERA (SIERA). He's also rocking a 26.9% strikeout rate. All of these numbers are career bests for Suarez.

Suarez gets a great matchup against the Miami Marlins. Miami has a terrible 58 weighted runs created plus (wRC+) against left-handed pitching. They also have a minuscule .094 isolated slugging percentage (ISO), meaning they exhibit almost no power against lefties.

With the second-best projection in FanDuel Research's model, Suarez is a great option tonight in all formats.

Joe Ryan, Minnesota Twins ($9,800)

Joe Ryan ($9,800) has just one win but has still been a good fantasy option throughout the season.

Ryan has the lowest xFIP (3.11) and SIERA (2.92) of his career. His strikeout rate is down, but 28.4% is still a number that makes him a great option in fantasy. He's also cleaned up some other areas of his game, now with both the lowest walk rate (3.7%) and best ground-ball rate (37.4%) of his career.

He'll take on the Toronto Blue Jays tonight on the road. Toronto's offense has to be one of the most disappointing in baseball, as they average the fifth-fewest runs per game. Against righties, they have just a 94 wRC+ with their active lineup.

Ryan has had a higher salary at different points of this season, so it's nice to be able to roster him at this lower mark.

Next Men Up

Logan Webb, San Francisco Giants ($9,100)

Things are set up nice for Logan Webb ($9,100) tonight, even if he's not the most exciting pitcher on the board.

Webb's 18.9% strikeout rate is a lot lower than we desire. However, he has a very respectable 3.24 xFIP. He also allows fly balls at only a 17.6% clip, so he's likely to keep the ball in the yard. That's especially true at Oracle Park -- the second-toughest stadium for home runs in MLB.

The strikeouts may come tonight in the matchup against the Cincinnati Reds. Cincinnati strikes out 27.8% of the time against righties, the second-highest rate in baseball. They also have just an 89 wRC+.

With his ability to get ground balls and in a good environment, I like rostering Webb in cash games. He should have the floor and safety we are looking for in that format.

Bryan Woo, Seattle Mariners ($8,000)

Bryan Woo ($8,000) had an impressive season in his rookie year for the Seattle Mariners and now is back after recovering from an injury.

Woo had a 25.1% strikeout rate last season. He also did a good job of limiting dangerous contact. He allowed just a 6.3% barrel rate last season.

Tonight, Woo will go up against the Oakland Athletics. Oakland has hit righties better than we would have expected coming into the season, but they still strike out 24.2% of the time.

Pitching in the stadium that has the lowest park factor for offense gives Woo a boost in this spot. I like him in tournaments, where he could easily go overlooked. He has the strikeout upside we need to seek when playing in larger-field contests.

Value of the Day

Jon Gray, Texas Rangers ($7,400)

Jon Gray ($7,400) is on a roll lately. He has back-to-back starts with 40 FanDuel points and allowed four earned runs total in his last three outings.

Gray's numbers overall this season are all good. He has a 25.4% K rate to go with a 3.48 SIERA. He's also allowing hard contact on just 28.6% of his batted balls -- the lowest of his career.

It's rare to find a player with those kinds of credentials for this low of a salary. Part of that is because Gray is pitching at Coors Field, but that doesn't scare me too much tonight.

Gray pitched at Coors for the first seven years of his career. This time, he'll face a Colorado Rockies lineup that has a 26.2% strikeout rate and an 83 wRC+ against righties this season. That matchup is one to target, not one to avoid.

Getting Gray at this salary is a huge bargain, and I'd be happy to target him in tournaments to be able to get good bats in my lineups.

Quick Mound Visits

Tyler Glasnow ($11,300) has been excellent this season but has a really tough matchup against the San Diego Padres. SD has struck out at the second-lowest rate against righties while carrying the fourth-highest wRC+.

Yusei Kikuchi ($10,000) has a 2.88 xFIP this season and a 26.5% strikeout rate this season. He will have to face the Minnesota Twins, who have the fourth-highest wRC+ against lefties at 130, so he's risky at this salary.

Charlie Morton ($9,300) is another option in the middle/high salary tier, but the New York Mets strike out just 19.8% of the time against righties this season.

Carlos Carrasco ($6,600) is an option if you're really starved for salary. He hasn't been great this season, but he allowed only one run in his last start and faces the Chicago White Sox, who have the second-lowest wRC+ against righties this season (83).

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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.