FanDuel Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Wednesday 5/24/23

We take a big step down at pitcher on Wednesday, though there are still some intriguing options if we're willing to take chances. Coors Field is on the stacking menu again, and despite the lack of fireworks there so far this week, we may want to go back to the well tonight.

Our daily helper is available every day to analyze FanDuel's main slate and help give you a starting point when you're building lineups. Be sure to also incorporate our great tools into your research process. Whether you're looking for daily projections, the latest starting lineups and weather, or batting and pitching heat maps to find the best matchups -- we've got you covered!

Let's check out the top options on today's main slate.

Pitching Breakdown

Unlike yesterday, when we had a good number of aces or near-aces to choose between at a variety of salaries, the pitching on this slate is rather iffy from top to bottom.

Case in point, Kodai Senga ($9,600) was more of a borderline play when he was originally scheduled to start on Tuesday, whereas he's arguably the top option tonight.

A big part of that is because Senga has easily one of the highest strikeout rates on the board (29.4%), with the majority of other arms coming in closer to average or worse in the metric. The righty is also fresh off a season-high 12 strikeouts and 55 FanDuel points versus a tough Rays team, proving that he can overcome a worrisome 13.9% walk rate for big fantasy scores.

But what really vaults Senga over the top tonight is the weather at Wrigley Field. We're not only seeing temperatures in the 50s in Chicago, but winds will be blowing in at roughly 16 MPH.

While Kodai figures to still dole out his share of walks, between his strikeouts, a high ground-ball rate (49.5%), and these pitcher-friendly weather conditions, the opposing Cubs will have an awfully difficult time doing any damage. Chicago's projected lineup should be a solid one for punchouts, as well, and the offense has one of the night's lowest implied team totals (3.30).

Up next, Bryce Miller ($10,900) comes in at a steep salary for a 24-year-old making just his fifth MLB start, and some good fortune has contributed to his 1.42 ERA. But his underlying metrics have generally been encouraging, and the matchup is great against Oakland.

The right-hander has put together a 3.72 SIERA, 25.0% strikeout rate, and 2.3% walk rate through his first 25 1/3 big league innings -- all of which look quite nice at face value. He's yet to allow a home run despite a 50.0% fly-ball rate and a .172 BABIP is unsustainable, but even if his ERA was closer to his SIERA, we would happily accept that.

The concerns revolve more around his strikeout potential. Despite the high K rate, Miller's 9.1% swinging-strike rate and 24.9% called-plus-swinging-strike rate are both below average, suggesting that his punchouts are due for regression. In fact, if we remove his 10-strikeout debut, he's managed just a 17.6% strikeout rate in the three games since, so perhaps regression is already taking hold.

So, why would we still consider rostering Miller at this high salary? Why, those Oakland Athletics, of course. The A's active roster owns an 89 wRC+ and 25.9% strikeout rate versus right-handed pitching this season, and they're the team Miller faced when he got those 10 strikeouts.

Even if we assume Miller is more of an average-ish pitcher for strikeouts, he should be able to generate whiffs against this particular opponent, and his impeccable control has helped him go six or more innings in all his appearances, resulting in four straight quality starts. Miller also logged a season-best 102 pitches his last time out, further giving us confidence that he will pitch deep into Wednesday's game.

Marcus Stroman ($9,900) isn't someone I typically like to roster in DFS because of his modest strikeout numbers. But if it wasn't apparent already, this could very well be a slate where the top pitching scores are a tad lower than usual, and Stroman will be the other beneficiary of the aforementioned Wrigley Field weather.

The veteran right-hander tends to outperform his ERA estimators, and this season has been no exception, as he's posted a sparkling 3.05 ERA that's roughly a full run lower than his 4.04 SIERA. That's due to a lack of barrels allowed and a 55.8% ground-ball rate that's led to him allowing just a 22.7% fly-ball rate, and as you might imagine, it's awfully difficult to hit home runs when it's that hard to square him up and get loft on the ball.

The downside is his modest 22.5% strikeout rate, and the Mets won't do him any favors as one of the worst matchups for punchouts. Stroman's also issuing more walks than usual (9.3%), and he tends to get pulled at exactly six innings in most starts.

All of this limits expectations for his ceiling, but we have similar worries with Miller, and Stroman's salary is $1,000 less than Miller's. At the very least, he's a good bet for the quality-start bonus -- something he's earned in 8 of 10 games -- and the conditions at Wrigley will further help him keep the Mets off the board. New York has a slate-worst 3.20 implied team total.

For a value play, this might be the rare occasion when we consider rostering someone at Coors Field. Sandy Alcantara ($8,900) hasn't been at his best in 2023, but given tonight's alternatives, buying low on a Cy Young winner at Coors isn't that crazy of a notion.

While Alcantara's underlying metrics are down from last year, they aren't that far off, as he has a respectable 4.09 SIERA, 22.6% strikeout rate, 14.1% swinging-strike rate, and 7.1% walk rate. He's still suppressing home runs as always, and he's logged 100 or more pitches in every start this month, so the potential is there for him to go seven, eight, or even nine innings when he's dealing. Despite his struggles, Alcantara has hit 50 or more FanDuel points twice, so the ceiling is intact.

Coors Field obviously makes the Rockies dangerous, but this is otherwise one of the lesser offenses in the league, and their active roster has an 88 wRC+ versus righties. Don't write off Alcantara tonight.

James Paxton ($10,400) is another risk-reward option, and he should be contrarian, as well. It's still way too early to determine what Paxton's rest-of-the-season expectations should look like, but Boston has to like the early returns they're getting from the 34-year-old southpaw. He's produced a 31.8% strikeout rate with good velocity over two starts, and after going 107 pitches last week, there could be some serious upside here -- if his arm can hold up.

This isn't a great matchup against the Angels for Paxton, and oddsmakers aren't buying in just yet (4.68 implied team total), but if the old Paxton is still in there, he could surprise on Wednesday.

Lastly, Nestor Cortes ($8,300) will probably draw some attention at this salary, so he gets a quick mention, but I'm inclined to pass against Baltimore, particularly if he's going to be popular. The Orioles have held their own versus lefties this year, and all but two batters in their projected lineup will bat right-handed. Cortes has a 5.08 xFIP and 23.8% strikeout rate against righty sticks in 2023.

Hitting Breakdown

Outside of a couple of dingers, theMiami Marlins were mostly a flop at Coors Field again last night, but here they are with an even higher implied team total (6.14) against Karl Kauffmann. Kauffman had a poor MLB debut at Texas last week, and that wasn't the least bit surprising given that he had a 5.78 xFIP and 14.9% strikeout rate at Triple-A before getting called up. Oh, and he had a 5.69 xFIP in Triple-A in 2022, too.

Despite the Marlins' underwhelming outputs the past two slates, this could be their best opportunity yet. Not a whole lot has changed when it comes to stacking Miami -- Jorge Soler ($3,500) is the lone power threat of any significance, then it's mostly prioritizing the top half of the order.

TheSeattle Mariners also didn't do much on Tuesday, but we're going to keep attacking the A's on a consistent basis, and the matchup is even better tonight versus Ken Waldichuk. The left-hander might not have a single metric in his profile that can be considered a positive, and he enters the night with a 5.55 SIERA, 17.7% strikeout rate, 12.7% walk rate, and 35.6% ground-ball rate. He's allowing 2.54 home runs per 9 innings, and he hasn't even been any good when facing left-handed batters.

The salaries haven't changed much from yesterday, so stacking the right-handed power of Julio Rodriguez ($3,400), Cal Raleigh ($3,000), Teoscar Hernandez ($2,800), and A.J. Pollock ($2,600) will be no trouble, and with the A's poor bullpen to follow, throw leftyJarred Kelenic ($3,300) into that first group, as well.

TheSan Diego Padres have the slate's second-highest implied team total (5.45). Right-hander Trevor Williams enters with a 4.75 SIERA and 16.9% strikeout rate, and he's coughed up 1.42 home runs per 9 innings off a 45.1% fly-ball rate.

Williams hasn't been special against either side of the plate, but a 5.38 xFIP and 12.5% strikeout rate against left-handed bats should draw us to Juan Soto ($3,400) first, and then Jake Cronenworth ($2,800),Matt Carpenter ($2,600),Trent Grisham ($2,800), and Rougned Odor ($2,200) get a bump as potential value plays. Fernando Tatis Jr. ($3,700) andXander Bogaerts ($3,000) are naturally the go-to righties.

The Boston Red Sox, Atlanta Braves, and Los Angeles Dodgers are other teams with higher implied team totals and notable matchups.

Left-hander Tyler Anderson just doesn't seem to have it this year, and we have to like Boston's chances against a guy with a 5.91 SIERA, 13.7% strikeout rate, and 10.7% walk rate. Note that Anderson does have a 56.7% ground-ball rate versus lefties -- but that's about it.

The Braves always bring plenty of pop to the table and get Tony Gonsolin, who has lucked into a good ERA through a .172 BABIP. Gonsolin's 4.80 SIERA tells the real story. Curiously, the right-hander has a lower strikeout rate (15.7%) in same-sided matchups.

Bryce Elder has pitched pretty well this season, so stacking the Dodgers is more about betting on their deep lineup coming through. The young righty doesn't get a ton of strikeouts (21.3%), though, and left-handed batters have an easier path to home runs due to Elder having a much lower ground-ball rate (46.9%) against them compared to righties (63.1%).

For a stack that's a little more sneaky, consider the Baltimore Orioles. As noted earlier, Cortes hasn't performed well versus right-handed batters, and Baltimore hitters will see low roster percentages if Cortes is a chalkier pitching play.