Thursday’s main slate features four games on FanDuel starting at 5:05 pm ET. DraftKings has a similar main slate featuring only three games starting an hour later. We will be using Bales Model to highlight some of the top options to consider.

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The three pitchers projected to score the most fantasy points today are:

  • Framber Valdez, HOU (R)
  • Jordan Montgomery, NYY (L)
  • Kyle Hendricks, CHC (R)

The highest-rated pitcher on Bales Model for FanDuel tonight is Framber Valdez from the Houston Astros. After a dominant first five month of the season, Valdez has struggled in the month of September. In 11 innings, he has allowed 12 hits and eight earned runs with 10 strikeouts and seven walks. Although his strikeouts have remained consistent, the walks are an issue.

Valdez is the highest-priced pitcher on the slate for both DraftKings and FanDuel and in order to live up to this high expectation he will have to regroup and regain his form quickly. Tonight, he does have a very favorable matchup against the Texas Rangers, who are projected for the second-lowest implied runs total on the slate (3.5 runs). Another reason to back Valdez is that the Rangers have the second-fewest walks in the league.

Another pitcher who has struggled in the month of September is Jordan Montgomery from the New York Yankees. In his last start, Montgomery threw 3 1/3 innings while allowing seven hits and five earned runs with three walks and six strikeouts. That was the second-fewest innings he has lasted all season, but like Valdez, Montgomery has an opponent who he can bounce back against.

Today, Montgomery will be on the mound against the Baltimore Orioles, who have lost their last five games and have scored only five runs in the first two games of this series. This will be Montgomery’s fourth start of the year against the Orioles and he has had strong performances in two of the past three times out against them.

Kyle Hendricks from the Chicago Cubs that had a strong performance last outing and is looking to build off his recent form. For a team that is in full rebuilding mode, Hendricks has been a bright spot for the Cubs. In 166 2/3 innings, he has a 4.54 ERA, 122 strikeouts, a 1.34 WHIP and 14-6 record. The ERA is not attractive, but he has accounted for more than 20% of the team’s wins. Tonight, Hendricks will be pitching against the Philadelphia Phillies, who are finishing out a seven-game homestand. In their last six games, they have averaged four runs and are projected for an implied runs total today of 4.7.


On a small slate, finding value within pitchers is extremely important. Two probable starters who offer decent upside are Glenn Otto of the Rangers and Louis Head of the Rays. Both pitchers are projected for moderately low ownership, while they have decent K/9 numbers.

Otto is expected to pitch more of the two and has struck out 16 in his 13 innings this season. He does have a tough task today facing the Houston Astros, but his low price and prior performance against the Astros are worth taking into consideration. In five innings in late August, Otto allowed only two hits against while striking out seven Astros batters.

Head is only expected to throw about two innings, but he has done well this season. In 30 1/3 innings, Head has struck out 27, has a 2.67 ERA, and has not given up any runs his last three games. Although he is priced fairly high on DraftKings, his minimum price of FanDuel is worth consideration. Head will be pitching against the Detroit Tigers, who are projected for the lowest implied runs total on the slate (3.3 runs).

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Notable Stack

Today’s top projected points stack comes to you from the -233 New York Yankees:

  • DJ LeMahieu (R)
  • Brett Gardner (L)
  • Aaron Judge (R)
  • Anthony Rizzo (L)

The Yankees are projected for the highest implied runs total on the slate today (6.2 runs). Not only are the Yankees projected for the most runs, they are also the biggest favorites on the slate (-233). Their team value rating of 89 is highly promising for a ball club that has scored 31 runs in its last five games. There are only two teams that have allowed 800+ runs against this season, and the Baltimore Orioles rank atop the list at 868. Chris Ellis will be on the mound for the Orioles, and he has allowed 16 hits in 21 2/3 innings, including two home runs. On FanDuel, this stack will cost you $14.3K in salary and is projected for a combined 50.9 fantasy points.

Other Hitters

The highest-rated batter on Bales Model for FanDuel today — not playing for the Yankees — is Randy Arozarena from the Tampa Bay Rays. Arozarena has collected 10 hits in his last eight games, which included two doubles and two stolen bases. The Rays are projected for the second-highest implied runs total on the slate (5.1 runs) as they take on the Detroit Tigers.


Finally, here is a handful of batters to consider while completing your lineups today that are projected for a high fantasy points/salary:

  • Jordan Luplow
  • Ramon Urias
  • Yandy Diaz
  • Taylor Wells
  • Jake Meyers

After this piece is published, FantasyLabs is likely to provide news updates on a number of players. Be sure to stay ahead of your competition with our industry-leading DFS-focused news blurbs.

Photo Credit: Bob Levey/Getty Images
Pictured: Framber Valdez