FanDuel MLB DFS Pitching Primer for Wednesday 4/10/24

Nicholas Vazquez
Nicholas Vazquez@nickvaz
FanDuel MLB DFS Pitching Primer for Wednesday 4/10/24

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 of the Heap

Marcus Stroman, New York Yankees ($10,100)

Marcus Stroman ($10,100) isn't typically a pitcher we'd want to allocate this kind of salary on. He doesn't offer the same kind of strikeout upside that players for this salary normally do.

However, we have limited options that will play in good weather on this slate. Stroman is one of them, and he's off to a good start this season.

Stroman joined the New York Yankees in the offseason after two solid seasons with the Chicago Cubs. He has yet to allow an earned run as a Yankee.

His 20.8% strikeout rate in his two starts is right around his career average of 20.1%. His specialty has been getting ground balls, with a 57.1% ground-ball rate last night and a 56.7% for his career.

Tonight, Stroman will face a reeling Miami Marlins' team. The Marlins have scored two runs in the last two games against the Yankees in this series. They have the lowest wRC+ and ISO as a team in MLB.

Stroman is a safe option, even if he doesn't have the same upside for a huge game as some other aces. Miami has the lowest implied team total on tonight's slate (3.55 runs), so Stroman is a safe pitcher to roster.

Dylan Cease, San Diego Padres, ($9,300)

Dylan Cease ($9,300) came over to the San Diego Padres in a trade. The hope for the Padres was that he would get back to his 2022 form.

So far, Cease has pitched fairly well in his two games with San Diego. He has struck out 30.2% of batters, getting close to the 30.4% he had in 2022. He also has a 13.9% swinging-strike rate, up 0.3 percentage points from last year.

Cease will also benefit from going to Petco Park. It is the second-best pitcher's park in the league, per Baseball Savant's park factors.

According to our projections, Cease is the best pitcher on the slate today. Unlike Stroman, he does have a lot of strikeout potential. I'd like to target Cease in tournaments today.

Value Options

Cody Bradford, Texas Rangers ($8,600)

Last time out, Cody Bradford ($8,600) shut down the Houston Astros to the tune of just one run over 7.2 innings. He'll get a softer matchup tonight.

Bradford has come out of the gates way better this season than he finished last season. He has decreased the amount of dangerous contact that he's allowed. His barrel percentage is down to 6.1% from 11.8% last season, and his hard-hit rate is just 33.3%.

He hasn't been a huge strikeout pitcher in his young MLB career, but Bradford gets a great opportunity for Ks today. He'll face the Oakland Athletics, who have struck out 25.0% of the time against lefties this season.

The A's also have the third-lowest implied team total today, and Bradford has the third-best projection on the slate. He's usable in all formats tonight.

Kutter Crawford, Boston Red Sox, ($8,200)

It's been a good start to the season for Kutter Crawford ($8,200). He's allowed just one earned run in 10.2 innings and has 12 strikeouts.

Crawford was a good starter for the Boston Red Sox last season, as well. He had a 25.6% strikeout rate and a 3.93 SIERA. So far, he's improved on those numbers to the tune of a 28.6% K rate and a 3.46 SIERA.

It's not an easy matchup for Crawford against the Baltimore Orioles tonight. However, the Red Sox are still favored, according to the MLB odds on FanDuel Sportsbook.

Crawford could be a bit of a contrarian option with this tough matchup. If he continues to pitch like has to start the year, he should deliver value on this salary.

Quick Mound Visits

Hunter Greene ($9,700) is usually an option to consider, but the weather has me off him today.

The forecast is a little more up in the air in Atlanta. Pay attention to that because Allan Winans ($5,500) would be the best value arm on the slate if things clear up. He has a matchup against a New York Mets team that has the second-lowest wRC+ against righties (74).

If you are desperate for savings and the Atlanta weather looks bad, you could go to Kyle Hendricks ($5,900). His lack of strikeouts don't make him appealing for fantasy on most occasions, but if you get a quality start out of him for this salary, it could be enough if you hit with some batters in your lineup.

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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.