DFS Plays of the Day – April 18

Rich takes a look at the best DFS plays for Sunday's Main Slate.

Today’s main slate on both sites starts early at 1:05. FanDuel features 8 games, while DraftKings included the first game of the Boston/White Sox doubleheader. There’s no Coors on the slate, so no chalk stack to worry about. On the weather front, we can praise the baseball gods because there is no rain in the forecast for today. Let’s get to the slate.


Top SP: Gerrit Cole, NYY ($10,400 DK, $11,000 FD) vs TB


Sometimes I get “cute” and recommend a lower-priced ace just to save some cash, but today Gerrit Cole is the top SP by a lot. Since the start of the 2019 season, Cole is striking out a ridiculous 38% of the batters he faces and today’s projected Rays lineup features five batters with a strikeout rate north of 27%. Strikeouts are king in DFS and Cole should have no problem racking up the big boy points. That being said, we’ll have to figure out a way to save some cash elsewhere, but no worries, I got you.

Honorable Mentions: Shane Bieber, CLE ($10,000 DK, $11,500 FD) at CIN; Aaron Nola, PHI ($8,800 DK, $8,500) vs STL; Freddy Peralta, MIL ($9,500 DK, $8,500 FD) vs PIT.


Value SP: Kyle Gibson, TEX ($5,800 DK, $7,600 FD) vs BAL


Did you throw up when you saw Kyle Gibson? Good, now puke and rally. I know Gibson had a rough start to the season allowing five earned runs while only getting one out. However, he’s bounced back with two really nice outings that combine to be 13 innings pitched while allowing just one earned run. He’s even struck out 11 batters during that time. Today, Gibson faces the Orioles, who have been a little punchy in the early going. However, this game is being played in Globe Life Park that has played as a pitchers park since it opened at the beginning of the 2020 season. I don’t think Gibson “lights the world on fire”, but at $5,800 on DraftKings, we don’t need him to do a ton to reach value.

Honorable Mention: John Means, BAL ($8,000 DK, $8,000 FD) at TEX; Pablo Lopez, MIA ($6,200 DK, $7,400) vs SF.


3B José Ramirez, CLE ($5,200 DK, $3,000 FD) at CIN


Anytime I can get a hitter like José Ramirez in Great American Smallpark at a discount, I’m going to jump all over it. That’s what we have today on FanDuel. Ramirez and the Indians have struggled out of the gate and FanDuel has dropped his price to insulting levels. But when you get to face Wade Miley and you’re on a three-game hitting streak that features a pair of stolen bases, Ramirez should be able to hit value pretty easily. For his part, Miley has pitched well, albeit against the Pirates and Giants. This Indians team is another bottom dweller but I still like Ramirez in this situation.

Honorable Mentions: Whit Merrifield, 2B ($5,400 DK, $3,900 FD) vs TOR; Vlad Guerrero, Jr., 1B ($5,300 DK, $3,900 FD) at KC.


OF Giancarlo Stanton, NYY ($4,700 DK, $3,500 FD) vs TB


On the bump for the Rays will be Andrew Kittredge, but he’s expected to serve as an opener for the Fratty Pirate, Ryan Yarbrough. I like what Yarbrough has brought to the table, but in the bandbox that is Yankee Stadium against a righty-power hitter heavy lineup, it could be a bad day at the office. I don’t put much stock into BvP as it’s a small sample, but I typically give it a little weight in the form of, okay, this batter may just be seeing the ball well out of the pitcher’s hand. Giancarlo Stanton is 3/7 off Yarbrough with a homer and a double. Stanton has been as chilly as the weather in Coors but did mash a two-run shot on Friday. The Yankees are tied with the Nationals for the highest implied run total on the day so a Yankees’ stack is definitely in the cards today.

Honorable Mentions: Bryce Harper, OF ($5,400 DK, $4,200 FD) vs STL; Aaron Judge, OF ($5,600 DK, $4,000 FD) vs TB; Juan Soto, OF ($6,000 DK, $4,200 FD) vs ARI. 


Value Batter: OF Mickey Moniak, PHI ($2,100 DK, $2,000 FD) vs STL


If you want to call this a punt play, go for it as former #1 overall pick Mickey Moniak is the bare min on FanDuel and just $100 over the min on DraftKings. But I also like this situation for Moniak. The Phillies face John Gant today, who sports a 1.7% K-BB% since the start of the 2019 season against left-handed batters. He’s also allowed a 42% hard-hit rate to lefties in that time. Let’s call Moniak a punt-play with upside today.

Honorable Mentions: Adam Duvall, OF ($3,700 DK, $3,100 FD) vs SF; Alec Bohm, OF ($3,400 DK, $2,500 FD) vs STL; Jorge Soler, OF ($3,400 DK, $2,700 FD) vs TOR. 


Top Stack: Nationals vs ARI (LHP Madison Bumgarner)


I haven’t talked about the Nationals yet, but seeing as they are tied for the highest implied run total on the slate, I probably should. The Nats get Madison Bumgarner who has allowed 17 earned runs in 13.2 innings thrown this year. While the average fastball velocity has bumped back up slightly from last year, it’s still sitting below 90. I like this stack, but fitting in the two top pieces – Juan Soto and Trea Turner – is going to be tough if we head up to Cole as our SP1. Soto is priced at $6k on DraftKings and Turner isn’t too far behind him. I do like that Josh Bell is on the cheaper side and should be batting third and maybe we go wrap-around stack with Victor Robles in the 9-hole. That would give us 9-1-2-3 in this lineup at an average of $4,777 per player.

Good luck today!

Honorable Mentions: NYY vs TB (Kittredge); PHI vs STL (Gant); TOR at KC (Singer). 


Design by J.R. Caines (@JRCainesDesign on Twitter and @caines_design on Instagram)

Rich Holman

Tax Auditor by day (I promise I'm not the devil), dad to twin velociraptors by night. Complete sports junkie. Philly fan that only boos occasionally.

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