The MLB Breakdown offers data-driven analysis using the FantasyLabs Tools and predictive metrics to highlight notable players.
Saturday’s main slate features nine games starting at 7:10 p.m. ET or later. With the trade deadline on the horizon, teams will make an initial push with their eye toward October.
Keep an eye on the weather in Atlanta, which may have delay issues because of rain.
MLB DFS Pitching Picks
MLB DFS Stud Picks
Joe Musgrove ($9,600) San Diego Padres (-134) vs. Minnesota Twins
After receiving a contract extension this week, San Diego Padres pitcher Joe Musgrove jumps to the top of our player models and rates as one of the best pitchers on Saturday’s slate.
Benefitting from the pitcher-friendly confines of Petco Park, Musgrove faces a Twins lineup with a 3.6-implied run total. The local San Diego native has been consistent this season, posting an 8-3 record in 17 starts with a 2.63 ERA, 24.4% K rate and a 0.99 WHIP. Those numbers have positioned him as one of the more effective arms in the league.
Despite facing a disciplined Twins lineup with a 0.229 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a 0.332 wOBA, Musgrove is projected for 6.03 strikeouts. With the added win-bonus upside, he certainly becomes a viable option at SP1.
Framber Valdez ($9,700) Milwaukee Brewers (-195) vs. Seattle Mariners
Priced similarly to Musgrove, Houston Astros pitcher Framber Valdez rates as one of the highest pitchers in the Tournament Model, facing a Mariners lineup with a slate-low 3.2-implied run total.
Compared to Musgrove, Valdez looks to have a better matchup on paper, with the Mariners posting a 0.242 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a 0.317 wOBA. Looking to garner more ownership, Valdez remains a dominant option on the slate, with a 9-4 record in 19 starts, along with a 2.74 ERA, 22% K rate and 1.14 WHIP.
Players may have a difficult time deciding which top-priced arm to choose on the slate.
MLB DFS Value Picks
Glenn Otto ($6,500) Texas Rangers (+104) at Los Angeles Angels
Priced at a discounted $6,500 on DraftKings, Texas Rangers pitcher Glenn Otto looks to be a top value on the slate Saturday.
He’s facing a struggling Los Angeles Angels lineup, but Otto is certainly not a safe play by any means, posting a 5.37 ERA with a 4-7 record in 14 starts, a 17% K rate and a 1.46 WHIP.
Averaging a 6.99 K/9, Otto should use this opportunity as a get-right spot. He’s projected for 5.72 strikeouts against an Angels lineup with a 0.280 strikeout-per-at-bat average, one of the highest options on the slate.
With the discounted priced and a more ideal matchup, Otto could possibly be a fantasy-relevant option with strikeout upside.
MLB DFS GPP Picks
Clayton Kershaw ($9,900) Los Angeles Dodgers (-235) at Colorado Rockies
Playing pitchers at Coors Field is never something to feel good about, but this is Clayton Kershaw — a first-ballot Hall of Fame talent. Aside from Musgrove and Valdez, Kershaw projects for one of the highest ceilings on the slate and should come in at lower ownership, given the venue and a high 4.7-implied total for the Rockies.
Making one start at Coors — a June 28 loss — Kershaw went four innings, giving up six runs on nine hits and striking out four batters. But I’m willing to look past the outlier, as Kershaw is going for his fourth-straight win.
Also, if Kershaw can limit damage, he should find win-bonus upside and run support from the Dodgers’ bats, who are implied for a 7.1-run total.
I’m going with the spend-up option in hopes for an 85th-percentile outcome from a generational arm.
MLB DFS Hitters
With the Lineup Builder, it’s easy to incorporate stacks into DFS rosters.
Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can use our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 150 lineups.
The top DraftKings stack in the FantasyLabs MLB Player Model, when generated by median projection, belongs to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
- Will Smith (4) ($5,100)
- Freddie Freeman (3) ($6,100)
- Trea Turner (2) ($6,000)
- Mookie Betts (1) ($5,800)
- Trayce Thompson (5) ($2,800)
Implied for 7.1 runs — the highest on the slate — the powerful top-of-the-order Dodgers lineup is one of the more feared units in the majors. They’re facing Rockies pitcher Kyle Freeland in an ideal matchup at Coors Field vs. a pitcher who has a 4.64 ERA and 1.36 WHIP.
However, the Dodgers are disciplined at the plate, with a 0.218 strikeout-per-at-bat average and a 0.343 wOBA, the highest on the slate.
As previously mentioned, I prefer a hyper-correlated 1-2-3-4-5 stack when loading up bats on DraftKings. A price tag of $25,800 on DraftKings seems like an affordable stack, especially with outfielder Trayce Thompson projected to bat fifth and priced at $2,800.
Top Stacking Pick from THE BAT
The top DraftKings stack from THE BAT — when generated by projected ceiling — belongs to the Atlanta Braves:
The Braves’ bats are sprinkled among the top-rated options in the Tournament Model on Saturday.
The five-man 1-2-3-4-5 stack of the Braves is one of the best in the majors. They’re expected to face Corbin Martin, who has made one start at the MLB level. He’s spent most of the season in Triple-A, making 12 starts with a 6-3 record, 5.10 ERA, 24% K rate and 1.33 WHIP.
But now he faces the Braves, who are implied for a 5.9-run total, one of the highest on the slate.
Priced at $25,300 on DraftKings, this stack becomes a value option, with plenty of power against an inexperienced pitcher. Just keep an eye on the weather — making this stack a risky option.
Other MLB DFS Hitter Picks
Charlie Blackmon OF ($5,400 DraftKings, $3,900 FanDuel) Colorado Rockies vs. Los Angeles Dodgers (Clayton Kershaw)
Removing the Dodgers and Braves in search of possible one-off plays, Colorado Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon jumps to the top as one of the highest-rated bats in the Tournament Model.
Blackmon, who is projected to bat leadoff, is slashing .271/.321/.472 with 16 home runs. He looks to have a difficult matchup against Clayton Kershaw, but benefits from the home venue of Coors Field.
The Rockies are implied for 4.5 runs, and should rely on Blackmon and their powerful lineup to kickstart the scoring. At $5,400 on DraftKings, Blackmon is expensive and offers a one-off upside.
Shohei Ohtani 1B/OF ($5,600 DraftKings, $4,100 FanDuel) Los Angeles Angels vs. Texas Rangers (Glenn Otto)
If we’re talking about ceiling outcomes, Los Angeles Angels superstar Shohei Ohtani should be in the conversation on Saturday, as he’s projected for the highest ceiling.
The superstar is projected to hit leadoff and looks to face Rangers pitcher Glenn Otto, a struggling pitcher who is known to give up plenty of runs. Ohtani is virtually matchup-proof by slashing .251/.345/.481 with 21 home runs.
He’s worth the pay-up.
Victor Robles OF ($2,000 DraftKings, $2,100 FanDuel) Washington Nationals vs. St. Louis Cardinals (Dakota Hudson)
Washington Nationals outfielder Victor Robles projects as the top value on DraftKings in what looks to be an ideal matchup against Dakota Hudson and the St. Louis Cardinals. Look for Robles to be a one-off play, which should open up salary relief if playing higher-priced stacks, especially at the minimum salary of $2,000.
Projected to bat leadoff, Robles should have plenty of opportunities to generate runs for the Nationals, who are implied for 4.2 on Saturday.