FanDuel MLB Daily Picks and Pivots – Tuesday August 1

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 27: Starting pitcher Max Scherzer
WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 27: Starting pitcher Max Scherzer /
FanDuel MLB
WASHINGTON, DC – JULY 27: Starting pitcher Max Scherzer /

Welcome to the Tuesday FanDuel MLB edition of Picks and Pivots, a fantasy baseball column focused on helping you find the best core lineup for today’s Main Slate DFS action!

For those of you finding us for the first time, the concept behind FanDuel MLB Picks and Pivots is to first identify key building blocks that can be used for any roster construction and then identify pivot points to help differentiate your lineup in hopes of a big payday!

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The winning GPP line-up on Monday put up scores just below our season average with over 253 FanDuel points. Over the first 117 slates of the FanDuel MLB season, the average winning score to take down a GPP has been 261.0 points. Looking back at last season, the winning GPP lineup on average scored 255 FanDuel points with a typical roster build that allocated 25% of your salary cap to your SP and the remaining 75% to your hitters.

Over the first 117 slates of the FanDuel MLB season, the average winning score to take down a GPP has been 261.0 points.

The winning GPP lines on Monday were built around some unlikely hitting heroes with Jake Marisnick (63.3 FanDuel points) and Derek Fisher (34.2 FD points) keying the Astros attack while Marcus Semien hit a grand slam for 35.4 FD points and when paired with arms like Gio Gonzalez (49) or Danny Duffy (40) it allowed for you to put up a big time night with some unlikely DFS punt plays keying your score!

Each day we will break down our top Starting Pitcher and our top hitting stacks of the day while giving you our thoughts on roster build and lineup construction.

As always, we will look to update our picks and final lineup thought  prior to lock on our twitter account @FantasyCPR so make sure to give us a follow for all the late breaking lineup news.

Without further ado, let’s get into today’s slate!

MLB FanDuel
PHOENIX, AZ – JULY 21: Max Scherzer /

FanDuel MLB – Top Starting Pitcher Pick:

Max Scherzer ($11,500) or Chris Sale ($11,400): There is no question tonight that Scherzer and Sale are the two best arms on the slate, in fact they may be the two best DFS arms in the league so your roster build decision starts and ends with how you plan on treating this.

Rather than get cute, my gut reaction is to lock in these top arms and work to find a line-up of value hitters I am comfortable with rather than try to roll the dice with a lesser arm. The reality is, Max and Sale are so head and shoulders above the rest of the field – it becomes less a question of should we pay up for them and rather which of these two arms we should roster?

Sale and Scherzer both have K rates of 36% or more which is 6% higher than any other arm on this slate and with a 16% swinging strike rate, again the highest on the slate, these arms have the elite ability to drop double-digit strikeout performances and 50-60 FanDuel points routinely.

The match-ups today are not ideal for either arm but this may be the one spot where we can find reasons to go with one arm over the other as the Indians have the lowest K rate of any team on the slate (15%) versus the Marlins at 20% giving a slight advantage of Max.

Scherzer has also faced the Marlins one time this season in Miami, racking up 11 K’s over 8 innings and dropping 61 FanDuel points so we can feel comfortable that this is a line-up that Scherzer has the ability to dominate.

Miami has the lowest team total on the slate and Scherzer is a massive -190 road favorite which further tips the scale towards Mad Max and with only $100 salary difference, the only reason to drop down to Sale in my mind is if we get the feeling there will be a massive ownership % discrepancy (which I do not believe there will be).

If you are looking for a detailed breakdown of today’s pitching slate, check out Matt Roger’s August 1st FanDuel SP breakdown!

FanDuel MLB
SEATTLE, WA – JULY 09: Nelson Cruz /

FanDuel MLB – Top Hitting Stacks:

The Scherzer/Sale debate will be the hot topic throughout the industry today but really the key roster decision you need to make today is if you can find a line-up of value bats (around $3k per batter) that you can maneuver around the high-priced aces! If you can build a line-up of hitters that you like AND you can still get Sale/Scherzer than there is simply no reason to look elsewhere in my opinion!

Mariners versus Nick MartinezThe Mariners/Rangers game has a game total of 10 runs, the second highest on this slate outside of Coors Field and will be the key spot I look for when building my Scherzer/Sale line-ups.

Martinez on the season is giving up 2 HR/9 to hitters from both sides of the plate and with only a 12% K rate, this is a pitcher we can feel free to attack in one of the best hitting environments on the slate.

For all the BvP fans out there, the Mariners hitters have some great history against Martinez with Kyle Seager ($3,200) going 7 for 11 with 2 doubles and one home run, and Nelson Cruz ($3,600) and Robinson Cano ($3,100) both homering off the Texas right-hander.

The appeal with the Mariners here is we can roster an elite offense stack including Jean Segura ($3,100) for price points that allow you to build around the high-end arms.

Texas Rangers versus Erasmo RamirezThe Rangers have the highest team total outside of Coors Field (5.3) so getting some exposure on the other side of this game, especially with some big time value prices, will be a key to unlocking this roster build!

Ramirez on the season is giving up 47% hard contact and 1.75 HR/9 to left-handed hitters so this is where you want to focus your attention with bats like the suddenly red-hot Nomar Mazara ($3,300) and Joey Gallo ($3,000) and they can be paired with the lone Rangers remaining catcher in Robinson Chirinos ($2,200). 

FanDuel MLB
ARLINGTON, TX – JULY 31: Joey Gallo /

FanDuel MLB – Sample GPP Line-Up and Slate Overview

Please Note: This is NOT an optimized line-up, it is simply illustrative to show the type of roster build we can have using the logic previously laid out in Picks and Pivots. My actual line-up may differ from the line-up shown here.  

More from FanSided

P: Max Scherzer ($11,500)

C: Robinson Chirinos ($2,200)

1B: Joey Gallo ($3,000)

2B: Robinson Cano ($3,100)

3B: Kyle Seager ($3,200)

SS: Jean Segura ($3,100)

OF: Nelson Cruz ($3,600)

OF: Nomar Mazara ($3,300)

OF: Jake Marisnick ($2,000)

Slate Overview: Scherzer or Sale, Sale or Scherzer? My advice, spend less time on this decision and more time on how you will utilize the roughly $3k/hitter to build the line-up you like. I already have talked with some friends at the DFS Facebook Group  DFS Depot and have heard recommendations for the Dodgers bats as well who are simply under priced for their match-up against a rookie in Atlanta so if you can find bats like this then you should lock in that roster build and avoid trying to get cute at SP!

Next: FanDuel Pitching Breakdown August 1

Best of luck in your FanDuel MLB contests and stay tuned to Fantasy CPR and @2lockSports on Twitter for the late breaking lineup news and roster updates!