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MLB DFS Picks Breakdown (Tuesday, July 26th): Shane McClanahan Leads Strong Pitching Slate

The MLB Breakdown offers data-driven analysis using the FantasyLabs Tools and predictive metrics to highlight notable players.

Tuesday features a 13-game main slate starting at 7:05 p.m. ET.

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MLB DFS Pitching Picks

MLB DFS Stud Picks

Shane McClanahan ($10,300) Tampa Bay Rays (-200) at Baltimore Orioles

McClanahan is the current betting favorite to win the AL Cy Young, at +155 via BetMGM. He’s getting similar respect from Vegas today, with -200 moneyline odds and the Orioles tied for the lowest run total on the slate.

Baltimore has had a bit of an offensive resurgence of late, with a 107 wRC+ in July. However, they’re on the wrong side of their team platoon splits against the lefty McClanahan. On the season, they have a 91 wRC+ against southpaws while striking out over 25% of the time.

That bodes well for McClanahan, who leads all qualifying starters with a 35.7% strikeout rate on the season. That’s more than 2% higher than his closest competitor, giving him tremendous upside.

Additionally, his average start is over six innings, and he holds a 1.71 ERA. There’s not much more we could ask from a pitcher, even on a crowded 13-game slate.

He leads the FantasyLabs projections for median and ceiling while coming in third in THE BAT. For my money, he’s the best combination of floor and ceiling on the slate.

Carlos Rodon ($9,800) San Francisco Giants (-189) at Arizona Diamondbacks

While Rodon’s numbers fall a bit short of McClanahan’s on the season, he’s still one of the best pitchers in baseball. Particularly for DFS, as he’s one of just five qualified starters with a strikeout rate above 30%.

While his 2.95 ERA isn’t quite as strong as some of the other top options, that’s balanced out by the matchup today. Arizona has a 93 wRC+ overall and 96 against lefties coming into Tuesday. They’re implied for a reasonably low 3.7 runs, also one of the slate’s lowest marks.

Rodon ranks just behind McClanahan in the FantasyLabs projections for median and ceiling, with his cheaper price making him a slightly better value. He also ranks second in THE BAT’s pitcher projections on Tuesday.


MLB DFS Value Picks

Mike Clevinger ($8,100) San Diego Padres (-190) at Detroit Tigers

Clevinger has nearly identical Vegas data as Rodon, as a -190 favorite with Detroit implied for 3.7 runs. Of course, the Tigers lit up Sean Manaea and the Padres last night to the tune of 12 runs, so DFS players might be a bit hesitant to go right back to the well.

However, the Tigers have been far better against southpaws than traditional pitchers. Clevinger is right-handed, making the matchup much better than it was for Manaea. Detroit has been pathetic against right-handers, with their 67 wRC+ ranking worst in the league.

Clevinger’s 24.7% strikeout rate is solid, so he has reasonable upside tonight. He’s a solid cash game option, given his salary relative to the other pitchers in play. He ranks top-five in both THE BAT’s and the FantasyLabs models for Pts/Sal projection, with the pitchers above him featuring either significantly higher price tags or a greater degree of risk.


MLB DFS GPP Picks

L.H. Garcia ($9,100) Houston Astros (-165) at Oakland A’s

Garcia is tied with McClanahan for the lowest opponent run total on the slate at 3.2 runs, as he has an excellent matchup with Oakland. Oakland ranks above only Detroit in their numbers against righties, with a 75 wRC+ coming into the game.

Garcia has also been strong this season, with a 3.65 ERA and 26% strikeout rate. His SIERA and swinging strike rate also suggest some potential room for improvement, which could start vs. the A’s.

This game is in Oakland, which features excellent conditions for pitchers. It leads the slate in Park Factor and Weather Rating, another boost to Garcia.

He’s also expected to rank outside the top tier in ownership, making him an excellent choice for GPPs. While he’s not among the leaders in median or ceiling projections, he’s reasonably close, and his chances of a top score are likely higher than his ownership will be.

Aaron Nola ($10,000) Philadelphia Phillies (+100) vs. Atlanta Braves

Nola is a top option with a difficult matchup on Tuesday, taking on a Braves team with a top 10 offense.

However, Nola brings a strikeout rate of over 28% into this one, as well as a strong 3.13 ERA. While Atlanta should make it hard to live up to those numbers, his strikeout rate provides a ton of upside, which is perfect for GPPs.

Ownership should be fairly reasonable on Nola as well. He’s overpriced for his moneyline odds and the Braves’ 4.0-run implied total, which should limit how much of the field looks his way.

That makes him a perfect candidate to take a shot on for tournaments since he has a clear path to the top score on the slate. He’s a bit risky for cash games — especially given the other options available — but the upside is certainly there.

MLB DFS Hitters

Notable Stack

With the Lineup Builder, it’s easy to incorporate stacks into DFS rosters.

Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 150 lineups.

The top DraftKings stack in the FantasyLabs MLB Tournament Model when generated by rating belongs to the Chicago White Sox:

  • Tim Anderson (1) ($5,100)
  • Yoan Moncada (2) ($4,000)
  • Andrew Vaughn (3) ($4,300)
  • Jose Abreu (4) ($4,700)
  • Yasmani Grandal (5) ($3,800)

The White Sox are in Denver tonight, so it’s no surprise they’re ranking as a top stack. They have a 5.7-run total against the Rockies and starter German Marquez ($7,100).

Marquez has struggled mightily this year, with a  5.47 ERA coming into the contest. While that’s not an entirely fair measuring stick for a pitcher who has roughly half his games at Coors Field, there are other concerning signs. Namely, his 18.8% strikeout rate.

High strikeout pitchers can succeed at Coors — it doesn’t matter how thin the air is if the ball isn’t put in play — but that’s not the case with Marquez. While he has a high ground ball rate, he allows enough contact to give the Sox massive upside.

This stack is also reasonably priced at just over $4,000 per player, and it takes care of the catcher spot with Grandal. Getting a middle-of-the-order catcher at his price tag is valuable regardless of location, but it’s particularly valuable at Coors.

The White Sox are an excellent stack for all contest types tonight, chalky though they may be in GPPs.


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 in our Player Models.

The top DraftKings stack from THE BAT when generated by ceiling belongs to the Colorado Rockies:

It’s no surprise that the other half of the game at Coors is also popping as a top stack, with the Rockies edging out the White Sox in ceiling projection in THE BAT.

They have a similarly appealing matchup with Michael Kopech ($6,800) of the White Sox. Kopech has a 3.36 ERA on the season, but his underlying numbers imply he’s been lucky: His SIERA is 4.89, with a 4.50 FIP.

Like Marquez, his profile also fits poorly at Coors Field. He has just a 21.3% strikeout rate, and his 9.3% swinging-strike rate indicates his strikeout rate should be even lower. He’s also primarily a flyball pitcher, with a 52.9% flyball rate. That’s a problem at Coors Field, where any flyball is liable to carry for an extra-base hit or home run.

The Rockies stack is a bit more expensive than the White Sox, but it’s probably worth the cost given Kopech’s profile. I’ll be trying to load up on both teams, but power hitters from the Rockies are my priority.

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Other MLB DFS Hitter Picks

Jeter Downs 2B/3B ($2,000 DraftKings; $2,100 FanDuel) Boston Red Sox vs. Cleveland Guardians (Bryan Shaw)

With all the expensive pitchers and stacks in play tonight, a minimum-priced hitter with multi-positional eligibility is worth a look. Downs is hitting just .139 so far in his rookie season but has the profile of a far better player.

He had an .811 OPS with 16 home runs and 18 steals in 65 games at Triple-A this season. While he’s struggling with big-league pitching, the potential is there as a borderline top 100 prospect.

He also has a tremendous matchup with Bryan Shaw ($4,000) of the Guardians, who has ERA and xERA numbers above five on the year. While Downs’ lack of production would typically scare me away, I’m willing to punt at a position to get the other players I want today. Teammate Jarren Duran ($3,400) is also a strong value as the projected leadoff hitter for the Red Sox.

He leads THE BAT’s Pts/Sal projections at both second and third base on DraftKings, while he’s listed as a SS on FanDuel.

Whit Merrifield 2B ($3,900 DraftKings; $2,700 FanDuel) Kansas City Royals vs. Los Angeles Angels (Jose Suarez)

Merrifield and the Royals have a strong matchup with Jose Suarez ($6,000) of the Angels, who brings a 5.60 ERA to the mound on Tuesday. The Royals are implied for a solid 4.5 runs, so getting their leadoff hitter for under $4,000 is a bargain.

Merrifield is also on the right side of his platoon splits against the lefty Suarez, hitting .297 with an .809 OPS against southpaws in his career. His stolen base upside is another bonus, with Merrifield picking up 15 already this season. He has a better-than-average shot of picking one up tonight, with Angels projected catcher Max Stassi allowing the tenth-most stolen bases this year.

Darin Ruf 1B ($3,200 DraftKings; $2,600 FanDuel) San Francisco Giants at Arizona Diamondbacks (Tyler Gilbert)

Ruf and the Giants disappointed last night, getting shut out in Arizona despite projecting well. Today’s a new day, though, with a strong matchup against Tyler Gilbert ($5,600) of the Diamondbacks. The left-handed Gilbert has ERA and SIERA numbers over 5.00.

The fact that he’s a southpaw is crucial for Ruf, who has extreme platoon splits. His career batting average is .218 against righties but a much-improved .285 against lefties. His OPS jump is even more extreme, going from .673 to .938.

Ruf should be relatively low-owned on DraftKings, where he’s exclusively listed at 1B and has to compete with the Coors options. He’s worth a look in GPPs.

The MLB Breakdown offers data-driven analysis using the FantasyLabs Tools and predictive metrics to highlight notable players.

Tuesday features a 13-game main slate starting at 7:05 p.m. ET.

Start Your PRO Trial Today

Lineup builder and optimizer

Real-time DFS models

Data-driven analysis & tutorials

MLB DFS Pitching Picks

MLB DFS Stud Picks

Shane McClanahan ($10,300) Tampa Bay Rays (-200) at Baltimore Orioles

McClanahan is the current betting favorite to win the AL Cy Young, at +155 via BetMGM. He’s getting similar respect from Vegas today, with -200 moneyline odds and the Orioles tied for the lowest run total on the slate.

Baltimore has had a bit of an offensive resurgence of late, with a 107 wRC+ in July. However, they’re on the wrong side of their team platoon splits against the lefty McClanahan. On the season, they have a 91 wRC+ against southpaws while striking out over 25% of the time.

That bodes well for McClanahan, who leads all qualifying starters with a 35.7% strikeout rate on the season. That’s more than 2% higher than his closest competitor, giving him tremendous upside.

Additionally, his average start is over six innings, and he holds a 1.71 ERA. There’s not much more we could ask from a pitcher, even on a crowded 13-game slate.

He leads the FantasyLabs projections for median and ceiling while coming in third in THE BAT. For my money, he’s the best combination of floor and ceiling on the slate.

Carlos Rodon ($9,800) San Francisco Giants (-189) at Arizona Diamondbacks

While Rodon’s numbers fall a bit short of McClanahan’s on the season, he’s still one of the best pitchers in baseball. Particularly for DFS, as he’s one of just five qualified starters with a strikeout rate above 30%.

While his 2.95 ERA isn’t quite as strong as some of the other top options, that’s balanced out by the matchup today. Arizona has a 93 wRC+ overall and 96 against lefties coming into Tuesday. They’re implied for a reasonably low 3.7 runs, also one of the slate’s lowest marks.

Rodon ranks just behind McClanahan in the FantasyLabs projections for median and ceiling, with his cheaper price making him a slightly better value. He also ranks second in THE BAT’s pitcher projections on Tuesday.


MLB DFS Value Picks

Mike Clevinger ($8,100) San Diego Padres (-190) at Detroit Tigers

Clevinger has nearly identical Vegas data as Rodon, as a -190 favorite with Detroit implied for 3.7 runs. Of course, the Tigers lit up Sean Manaea and the Padres last night to the tune of 12 runs, so DFS players might be a bit hesitant to go right back to the well.

However, the Tigers have been far better against southpaws than traditional pitchers. Clevinger is right-handed, making the matchup much better than it was for Manaea. Detroit has been pathetic against right-handers, with their 67 wRC+ ranking worst in the league.

Clevinger’s 24.7% strikeout rate is solid, so he has reasonable upside tonight. He’s a solid cash game option, given his salary relative to the other pitchers in play. He ranks top-five in both THE BAT’s and the FantasyLabs models for Pts/Sal projection, with the pitchers above him featuring either significantly higher price tags or a greater degree of risk.


MLB DFS GPP Picks

L.H. Garcia ($9,100) Houston Astros (-165) at Oakland A’s

Garcia is tied with McClanahan for the lowest opponent run total on the slate at 3.2 runs, as he has an excellent matchup with Oakland. Oakland ranks above only Detroit in their numbers against righties, with a 75 wRC+ coming into the game.

Garcia has also been strong this season, with a 3.65 ERA and 26% strikeout rate. His SIERA and swinging strike rate also suggest some potential room for improvement, which could start vs. the A’s.

This game is in Oakland, which features excellent conditions for pitchers. It leads the slate in Park Factor and Weather Rating, another boost to Garcia.

He’s also expected to rank outside the top tier in ownership, making him an excellent choice for GPPs. While he’s not among the leaders in median or ceiling projections, he’s reasonably close, and his chances of a top score are likely higher than his ownership will be.

Aaron Nola ($10,000) Philadelphia Phillies (+100) vs. Atlanta Braves

Nola is a top option with a difficult matchup on Tuesday, taking on a Braves team with a top 10 offense.

However, Nola brings a strikeout rate of over 28% into this one, as well as a strong 3.13 ERA. While Atlanta should make it hard to live up to those numbers, his strikeout rate provides a ton of upside, which is perfect for GPPs.

Ownership should be fairly reasonable on Nola as well. He’s overpriced for his moneyline odds and the Braves’ 4.0-run implied total, which should limit how much of the field looks his way.

That makes him a perfect candidate to take a shot on for tournaments since he has a clear path to the top score on the slate. He’s a bit risky for cash games — especially given the other options available — but the upside is certainly there.

MLB DFS Hitters

Notable Stack

With the Lineup Builder, it’s easy to incorporate stacks into DFS rosters.

Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 150 lineups.

The top DraftKings stack in the FantasyLabs MLB Tournament Model when generated by rating belongs to the Chicago White Sox:

  • Tim Anderson (1) ($5,100)
  • Yoan Moncada (2) ($4,000)
  • Andrew Vaughn (3) ($4,300)
  • Jose Abreu (4) ($4,700)
  • Yasmani Grandal (5) ($3,800)

The White Sox are in Denver tonight, so it’s no surprise they’re ranking as a top stack. They have a 5.7-run total against the Rockies and starter German Marquez ($7,100).

Marquez has struggled mightily this year, with a  5.47 ERA coming into the contest. While that’s not an entirely fair measuring stick for a pitcher who has roughly half his games at Coors Field, there are other concerning signs. Namely, his 18.8% strikeout rate.

High strikeout pitchers can succeed at Coors — it doesn’t matter how thin the air is if the ball isn’t put in play — but that’s not the case with Marquez. While he has a high ground ball rate, he allows enough contact to give the Sox massive upside.

This stack is also reasonably priced at just over $4,000 per player, and it takes care of the catcher spot with Grandal. Getting a middle-of-the-order catcher at his price tag is valuable regardless of location, but it’s particularly valuable at Coors.

The White Sox are an excellent stack for all contest types tonight, chalky though they may be in GPPs.


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 in our Player Models.

The top DraftKings stack from THE BAT when generated by ceiling belongs to the Colorado Rockies:

It’s no surprise that the other half of the game at Coors is also popping as a top stack, with the Rockies edging out the White Sox in ceiling projection in THE BAT.

They have a similarly appealing matchup with Michael Kopech ($6,800) of the White Sox. Kopech has a 3.36 ERA on the season, but his underlying numbers imply he’s been lucky: His SIERA is 4.89, with a 4.50 FIP.

Like Marquez, his profile also fits poorly at Coors Field. He has just a 21.3% strikeout rate, and his 9.3% swinging-strike rate indicates his strikeout rate should be even lower. He’s also primarily a flyball pitcher, with a 52.9% flyball rate. That’s a problem at Coors Field, where any flyball is liable to carry for an extra-base hit or home run.

The Rockies stack is a bit more expensive than the White Sox, but it’s probably worth the cost given Kopech’s profile. I’ll be trying to load up on both teams, but power hitters from the Rockies are my priority.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Other MLB DFS Hitter Picks

Jeter Downs 2B/3B ($2,000 DraftKings; $2,100 FanDuel) Boston Red Sox vs. Cleveland Guardians (Bryan Shaw)

With all the expensive pitchers and stacks in play tonight, a minimum-priced hitter with multi-positional eligibility is worth a look. Downs is hitting just .139 so far in his rookie season but has the profile of a far better player.

He had an .811 OPS with 16 home runs and 18 steals in 65 games at Triple-A this season. While he’s struggling with big-league pitching, the potential is there as a borderline top 100 prospect.

He also has a tremendous matchup with Bryan Shaw ($4,000) of the Guardians, who has ERA and xERA numbers above five on the year. While Downs’ lack of production would typically scare me away, I’m willing to punt at a position to get the other players I want today. Teammate Jarren Duran ($3,400) is also a strong value as the projected leadoff hitter for the Red Sox.

He leads THE BAT’s Pts/Sal projections at both second and third base on DraftKings, while he’s listed as a SS on FanDuel.

Whit Merrifield 2B ($3,900 DraftKings; $2,700 FanDuel) Kansas City Royals vs. Los Angeles Angels (Jose Suarez)

Merrifield and the Royals have a strong matchup with Jose Suarez ($6,000) of the Angels, who brings a 5.60 ERA to the mound on Tuesday. The Royals are implied for a solid 4.5 runs, so getting their leadoff hitter for under $4,000 is a bargain.

Merrifield is also on the right side of his platoon splits against the lefty Suarez, hitting .297 with an .809 OPS against southpaws in his career. His stolen base upside is another bonus, with Merrifield picking up 15 already this season. He has a better-than-average shot of picking one up tonight, with Angels projected catcher Max Stassi allowing the tenth-most stolen bases this year.

Darin Ruf 1B ($3,200 DraftKings; $2,600 FanDuel) San Francisco Giants at Arizona Diamondbacks (Tyler Gilbert)

Ruf and the Giants disappointed last night, getting shut out in Arizona despite projecting well. Today’s a new day, though, with a strong matchup against Tyler Gilbert ($5,600) of the Diamondbacks. The left-handed Gilbert has ERA and SIERA numbers over 5.00.

The fact that he’s a southpaw is crucial for Ruf, who has extreme platoon splits. His career batting average is .218 against righties but a much-improved .285 against lefties. His OPS jump is even more extreme, going from .673 to .938.

Ruf should be relatively low-owned on DraftKings, where he’s exclusively listed at 1B and has to compete with the Coors options. He’s worth a look in GPPs.