FanDuel MLB Daily Picks and Pivots – Tuesday September 5

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 4: Justin Verlander
SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 4: Justin Verlander /
FanDuel MLB
SEATTLE, WA – SEPTEMBER 4: Justin Verlander FanDuel MLB /

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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Monday’s winning GPP scores were just below our season average as it took 250 FanDuel points to take down a tournament! Over the first 149 slates of the FanDuel MLB season, the average winning score to take down a GPP has been 260.5 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 149 slates of the FanDuel MLB season, the average winning score to take down a GPP has been 260.5 points.

Monday’s Early Slate (which was the larger one games wise) was dominated by Carlos Martinez who struck out 10 Padres in a complete game 67 FanDuel point outing! Martinez when paired with the Angels/Oakland offenses including Martin Maldonado who homered twice and put up 40.9 FanDuel Points was enough to take down GPP”s on the Early Labor Day slate!

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!

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HOUSTON, TX – SEPTEMBER 02: Justin Verlander /

FanDuel MLB – Top Starting Pitcher Pick:

Justin Verlander ($8,600) On a slate with a ton of aces including Stephen Strasburg, Jacob deGrom, Zack Greinke and the fresh off the D.L. Danny Salazar, one thing is clear – we have no shortage of options to pay up for at pitcher. The arm that stands out the most to me is the newest Houston Astros right-hander, Justin Verlander, who will make his debut for his new team against the Seattle Mariners.

The price point for me feels entirely too low for one of the most elite strikeout arms in baseball over the last month….yes it is true….don’t believe me? In August the top K rates for qualified starting pitchers were as follows:

If you play fantasy baseball/DFS you will know that Verlander has a knack for coming on strong in the second half of the season and it is possible we are seeing the same uptick just in time for his new team to reap the benefits. Last season, Verlander had a 25.1% K rate in the first half of the season which jumped to 31.6% in the second half including a dominant 35.7% K rate in September/October of last season!

In two starts this season against the Mariners (as a member of the Tigers), Verlander racked up 11 K’s and 8 K’s with 30% or higher K rates in each contest so the dominant strikeout ability is evident and the fact we can roster him for $2k less than an arm like Strasburg feels like a bargain!

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DENVER, CO – AUGUST 29: Nolan Arenado /

FanDuel MLB – Top Hitting Spots:

Colorado Rockies versus LHP Ty BlachSo much for the run totals not skyrocketing at Coors Field as this game opens with a total of 12 runs and I expect the Rockies bats to do significant damage against Ty Blach here. Blach on the season outside of San Francisco is giving up 1.5 HR/9 and 34% hard contact to right-handed batters and in his only other start in Coors this season surrendered 7 hits, 3 ER and 2 home runs!

Nolan Arenado ($4,300) is the premier bat to pay up for on this slate but oddly he seems to be the only bat that FanDuel has really priced to where we need to worry about salary on this slate. Ian Desmond ($3,300) and Trevor Story ($3,600) seem entirely too cheap for this match-up especially considering that Story has a .366 ISO on the season versus left-handed pitching and homered off Blach the last time they tangled in Coors Field.

UPDATE: Tampa Bay Rays Versus Bartolo ColonWith the news that Julio Teheran will be skipped tonight for LHP Luiz Gohara, I am less inclined to roll with the Rangers bats in this spot. Gohara has electric strikeout stuff with a 31% K rate in AAA and has been able to limit the home run ball through his minor league career with a less than 1 HR/9 rate so this is a spot I think we can pivot off of now.

To build around a Verlander-Rockies core we have roughly $3k/batter to fill out the rest of our lineup and the Rays bats sit at price points that make this an intriguing secondary stack! Tonight the Rays take on the GOAT, Bartolo Colon, who has given up 1.9 HR/9 with a 42% hard contact rate to left-handed batters this season.

Lucas Duda ($3,100) and Kevin Kiermaier ($3,400) have been scorching hot over the last month against RHP with a .308 and .349 ISO respectively and Kiermaier leads the team with a monster .468 wOBA during that time frame! Corey Dickerson ($2,900) remains under-priced due to his recent cold streak but is coming off a big night on Monday and profiles extremely well against Colon who relies on his fastball/change-up, both of which Dickerson has hit above the league average over the last month!

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ST. PETERSBURG, FL – JUNE 25: Evan Longoria /

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: Justin Verlander ($8,600)

C: Salvador Perez ($2,300)

1B: Lucas Duda ($3,100)

2B: Jose Ramirez ($3,500)

3B: Nolan Arenado ($4,300)

SS: Trevor Story ($3,600)

OF: Ian Desmond ($3,300)

OF: Kevin Kiermaier ($3,400)

OF: Corey Dickerson ($2,900)

Slate Overview: Pitching and strikeout upside is the overwhelming theme of this slate and what I love about locking in Justin Verlander is that he gives me elite K upside at a price point that allows me to stack up the bats in Coors Field and allows me $3k per hitter to build around the Rays power bats and one of the hottest hitters in the league at 2B!

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