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MLB DFS: Model Picks, Value Plays & Top Stack for August 11

The FantasyLabs MLB Player Models house numerous data points to help you construct your MLB DFS rosters.

They house our floor, median and ceiling projections for each player, but that’s just the beginning of what you’ll find inside. You’ll also find our Trends tool, stacking tool and more.

Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 150 lineups, or use our Lineup Builder if you like to hand-build your teams for cash games or small-field tournaments.

Let’s dive into some MLB plays that stand out in our Player Models for today’s slate.

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Real-time DFS models

Data-driven analysis & tutorials

Bargain Rating Value Picks

You might be asking: what is Bargain Rating, and why should I care?

Bargain Rating shows how much of a bargain a player is on one DFS site versus others. If a player is significantly cheaper on one site than the other, they will have a favorable Bargain Rating on the site where they’re more affordable and a poor Bargain Rating on the site where they’re more expensive. It’s a straightforward metric, but targeting players at reduced price tags is almost always a strong strategy in DFS.

Bargain Rating strongly correlates with player value, which you can quickly see with our predictive projected Plus/Minus metric.

Seeing how Plus/Minus helps you project how many points a player is expected to score compared to what their salary implies them to score, this is a good company for Bargain Rating.

MLB DFS DraftKings Bargain Value

Tucupita Marcano ($2,000): Second Baseman/Outfielder, Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates have an exciting group of up-and-comers getting acclimated to life in the bigs. Among those is Tucupita Marcano, who projects as a top bargain option on DraftKings slates.

Marcano has had a productive August, posting a .724 on-base plus slugging percentage, knocking in three, and coming around to score three times. The 22-year-old also added value on the base paths, stealing a bag in last night’s contest.

The left-handed batting Marcano is making decent contact, with a sweet-spot percentage of 31.9%. Moreover, Marcano is expected to bat leadoff again on Thursday. That amplifies his fantasy value, with more opportunities to produce.

Based on our projections, Marcano ranks among the top options in Points/Salary and Projected Plus/Minus. He’s a low-cost option at second or the outfield with boom potential.

MLB DFS FanDuel Bargain Value

JJ Bleday ($2,300): Outfielder, Miami Marlins

Former first-round draft pick JJ Bleday has been in the MLB for just over two weeks, and early returns are promising. The Marlins’ outfielder is our preferred bargain option on the FanDuel slate today.

Through 30 plate appearances this month, Bleday is putting up All-Star caliber numbers. The Vanderbilt product has a .577 slugging percentage, with three of his nine hits going for extra bases. More importantly, Bleday has analytics to back up sustained production.

Barrel rate and hard-hit percentage are solid indicators of productive at-bats, and Bleday is well above the major league average in both categories. The 24-year-old is delivering a hard-hit rate of 51.3%, well above the MLB average of 35.7%. Similarly, his 15.4% barrel rate is more than double the league-wide benchmark of 6.7%.

We are riding Bleday’s hot bat into Thursday’s series finale against the Phillies, and we’re expecting him to easily surpass the implied value of his $2,300 salary.

MLB DFS Ceiling Projection Picks

Pitcher

Framber Valdez ($9,800 DraftKings, $10,400 FanDuel) vs. Texas Rangers

The Astros and Rangers take to the field Thursday afternoon for their AL West rubber match. That’s bad news for the Rangers as they will have to get past southpaw Framber Valdez.

Valdez has been effective at limiting solid contact this season, ranking in the 89th percentile in expected slugging percentage and barrel rate. Consequently, that’s driving his expected weighted on-base average down to .283, putting Valdez in the upper echelon of MLB pitchers.

We also can’t look past Valdez’s strikeout ability at home. The All-Star pitcher punches out 9.8 batters per nine innings at Minute Maid Park, compared to just 6.9 outside his friendly confines. That could be perpetuated by a free-swinging Rangers squad that ranks in the bottom half of the league in strikeouts versus lefties.

THE BAT X projections rate Valdez as the preeminent pitching option on both platforms today, with the big lefty leading median and ceiling projections. That elite fantasy ceiling is also reflected in our in-house modeling, which ranks Valdez as the best available option.


Hitter

Jose Ramirez ($5,900 DraftKings, $4,000 FanDuel) vs. Detroit Tigers

Guardians’ third baseman Jose Ramirez heads into Thursday’s contest against the Tigers on a modest five-game hitting streak. According to our projections, Ramirez is expected to continue his hot play as the Guardians look to extend their winning streak to five games.

Ramirez has been effective over his five-game sample, delivering six hits, two doubles, and two runs batted in. We’re anticipating an even more productive outing against Garrett Hill, who has some of the worst metrics in the league.

Hill has been utterly ineffective at limiting opponents, posting a .519 expected slugging percentage, 11.3% barrel rate, and 6.46 expected earned run average. Ramirez forces pitchers to throw to him, as evidenced by his 99th percentile ranking in strikeout percentage, leaving Hill no margin for error on Thursday.

Ramirez is among our median projection leaders and should reach his fantasy ceiling against Hill and the Tigers on Thursday. The AL MVP candidate is our preferred option to end the day with the most fantasy points among batters.

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Top Stacking Pick from THE BAT X

One of the great features of being a FantasyLabs Pro member is the option to purchase additional items in the FantasyLabs Marketplace.

A new addition to our MLB projections is THE BAT from Derek Carty of RotoGrinders. With this purchase, you can use his projections alone or create aggregate projections within our Player Models.

The top five-man DraftKings stack from THE BAT using median projections belongs to the Cardinals. When you load them into our Lineup Builder, you’ll have the option to hand-build the rest of your team or optimize the rest of it.

For the second day in a row, we are going back to the Cardinals well. The Cards performed exceptionally on Wednesday, recording nine runs against the Rockies. They project even higher today, with a chance to knock around German Marquez at Coors Field.

The top of the Cardinals’ order is laden with talent. Dylan Carlson projects as the leadoff man and should build off his third-rated on-base plus slugging percentage among qualified Cardinals hitters.

We get into the meaty part of the lineup behind Carlson, with Nolan Gorman, Paul Goldschmidt, and Nolan Arenado expected to bat second through fourth. Goldschmidt is the team leader in nearly every offensive category, and his offensive success is encapsulated in his NL-best .605 slugging percentage.

Still, Arenado is a close third with a .561 mark and comes up just seven runs batted in short of Goldschmidt’s 81. Gorman has also been a valuable contributor on offense, putting up a .759 on-base plus slugging percentage with 12 dingers and 26 runs batted in across 64 outings.

Tyler O’Neill completes the stack and has one of the highest projected ceilings on today’s slate, warranting inclusion on any Cards’ stack.

The FantasyLabs MLB Player Models house numerous data points to help you construct your MLB DFS rosters.

They house our floor, median and ceiling projections for each player, but that’s just the beginning of what you’ll find inside. You’ll also find our Trends tool, stacking tool and more.

Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 150 lineups, or use our Lineup Builder if you like to hand-build your teams for cash games or small-field tournaments.

Let’s dive into some MLB plays that stand out in our Player Models for today’s slate.

Start Your PRO Trial Today

Lineup builder and optimizer

Real-time DFS models

Data-driven analysis & tutorials

Bargain Rating Value Picks

You might be asking: what is Bargain Rating, and why should I care?

Bargain Rating shows how much of a bargain a player is on one DFS site versus others. If a player is significantly cheaper on one site than the other, they will have a favorable Bargain Rating on the site where they’re more affordable and a poor Bargain Rating on the site where they’re more expensive. It’s a straightforward metric, but targeting players at reduced price tags is almost always a strong strategy in DFS.

Bargain Rating strongly correlates with player value, which you can quickly see with our predictive projected Plus/Minus metric.

Seeing how Plus/Minus helps you project how many points a player is expected to score compared to what their salary implies them to score, this is a good company for Bargain Rating.

MLB DFS DraftKings Bargain Value

Tucupita Marcano ($2,000): Second Baseman/Outfielder, Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates have an exciting group of up-and-comers getting acclimated to life in the bigs. Among those is Tucupita Marcano, who projects as a top bargain option on DraftKings slates.

Marcano has had a productive August, posting a .724 on-base plus slugging percentage, knocking in three, and coming around to score three times. The 22-year-old also added value on the base paths, stealing a bag in last night’s contest.

The left-handed batting Marcano is making decent contact, with a sweet-spot percentage of 31.9%. Moreover, Marcano is expected to bat leadoff again on Thursday. That amplifies his fantasy value, with more opportunities to produce.

Based on our projections, Marcano ranks among the top options in Points/Salary and Projected Plus/Minus. He’s a low-cost option at second or the outfield with boom potential.

MLB DFS FanDuel Bargain Value

JJ Bleday ($2,300): Outfielder, Miami Marlins

Former first-round draft pick JJ Bleday has been in the MLB for just over two weeks, and early returns are promising. The Marlins’ outfielder is our preferred bargain option on the FanDuel slate today.

Through 30 plate appearances this month, Bleday is putting up All-Star caliber numbers. The Vanderbilt product has a .577 slugging percentage, with three of his nine hits going for extra bases. More importantly, Bleday has analytics to back up sustained production.

Barrel rate and hard-hit percentage are solid indicators of productive at-bats, and Bleday is well above the major league average in both categories. The 24-year-old is delivering a hard-hit rate of 51.3%, well above the MLB average of 35.7%. Similarly, his 15.4% barrel rate is more than double the league-wide benchmark of 6.7%.

We are riding Bleday’s hot bat into Thursday’s series finale against the Phillies, and we’re expecting him to easily surpass the implied value of his $2,300 salary.

MLB DFS Ceiling Projection Picks

Pitcher

Framber Valdez ($9,800 DraftKings, $10,400 FanDuel) vs. Texas Rangers

The Astros and Rangers take to the field Thursday afternoon for their AL West rubber match. That’s bad news for the Rangers as they will have to get past southpaw Framber Valdez.

Valdez has been effective at limiting solid contact this season, ranking in the 89th percentile in expected slugging percentage and barrel rate. Consequently, that’s driving his expected weighted on-base average down to .283, putting Valdez in the upper echelon of MLB pitchers.

We also can’t look past Valdez’s strikeout ability at home. The All-Star pitcher punches out 9.8 batters per nine innings at Minute Maid Park, compared to just 6.9 outside his friendly confines. That could be perpetuated by a free-swinging Rangers squad that ranks in the bottom half of the league in strikeouts versus lefties.

THE BAT X projections rate Valdez as the preeminent pitching option on both platforms today, with the big lefty leading median and ceiling projections. That elite fantasy ceiling is also reflected in our in-house modeling, which ranks Valdez as the best available option.


Hitter

Jose Ramirez ($5,900 DraftKings, $4,000 FanDuel) vs. Detroit Tigers

Guardians’ third baseman Jose Ramirez heads into Thursday’s contest against the Tigers on a modest five-game hitting streak. According to our projections, Ramirez is expected to continue his hot play as the Guardians look to extend their winning streak to five games.

Ramirez has been effective over his five-game sample, delivering six hits, two doubles, and two runs batted in. We’re anticipating an even more productive outing against Garrett Hill, who has some of the worst metrics in the league.

Hill has been utterly ineffective at limiting opponents, posting a .519 expected slugging percentage, 11.3% barrel rate, and 6.46 expected earned run average. Ramirez forces pitchers to throw to him, as evidenced by his 99th percentile ranking in strikeout percentage, leaving Hill no margin for error on Thursday.

Ramirez is among our median projection leaders and should reach his fantasy ceiling against Hill and the Tigers on Thursday. The AL MVP candidate is our preferred option to end the day with the most fantasy points among batters.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Top Stacking Pick from THE BAT X

One of the great features of being a FantasyLabs Pro member is the option to purchase additional items in the FantasyLabs Marketplace.

A new addition to our MLB projections is THE BAT from Derek Carty of RotoGrinders. With this purchase, you can use his projections alone or create aggregate projections within our Player Models.

The top five-man DraftKings stack from THE BAT using median projections belongs to the Cardinals. When you load them into our Lineup Builder, you’ll have the option to hand-build the rest of your team or optimize the rest of it.

For the second day in a row, we are going back to the Cardinals well. The Cards performed exceptionally on Wednesday, recording nine runs against the Rockies. They project even higher today, with a chance to knock around German Marquez at Coors Field.

The top of the Cardinals’ order is laden with talent. Dylan Carlson projects as the leadoff man and should build off his third-rated on-base plus slugging percentage among qualified Cardinals hitters.

We get into the meaty part of the lineup behind Carlson, with Nolan Gorman, Paul Goldschmidt, and Nolan Arenado expected to bat second through fourth. Goldschmidt is the team leader in nearly every offensive category, and his offensive success is encapsulated in his NL-best .605 slugging percentage.

Still, Arenado is a close third with a .561 mark and comes up just seven runs batted in short of Goldschmidt’s 81. Gorman has also been a valuable contributor on offense, putting up a .759 on-base plus slugging percentage with 12 dingers and 26 runs batted in across 64 outings.

Tyler O’Neill completes the stack and has one of the highest projected ceilings on today’s slate, warranting inclusion on any Cards’ stack.