MLB DFS Picks, Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks: Look Out Bello! (April 2)

Tuesday keeps things moving along with a nine-game featured slate and the MLB action getting underway at 7:10 p.m. ET on DraftKings, FanDuel and Yahoo. Before we get to our MLB DFS picks, as always, we will use Stokastic’s tools to help in identifying today’s MLB DFS top stacks, key pitchers and MLB DFS picks. Look to Shane Bieber and Brayan Bello as today’s aces, with the Atlanta Braves and San Diego Padres as the key offenses.

Still trying to find your MLB DFS edge? Luckily Stokastic has a new tool to help you get there — the MLB Sims Tool! With it you can simulate any MLB DFS contest you are playing on a given night and see what lineups are the likeliest to be profitable. And if you need a head start on strategy, we’ve broke down how to use the MLB Sims Tool to create the best DFS lineups on a nightly basis.

MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers and Top Stacks | April 2

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers

Main Slate Primary Pitching Target: RHP Brayan Bello at Oakland Athletics — 3.8 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $8,000 | FanDuel $8,800 | Yahoo $34

The Stokastic Top Pitchers Tool has RHP Brayan Bello as a top-3 option in most metrics across the main DFS sites tonight. Last year he really leaned into his strength of inducing ground balls, boasting an elite 56.2% rate, which was a tick above his 2022 results. He does a decent job of limiting home runs, but it is the slightly better-than-average 7.5 to 7.7 strikeouts per nine innings that keep him from being elite.

Of course, the Oakland offense does a great job of propping up opposing pitchers after having traded away just about every hitting asset over the last two seasons. The A’s have scored 11 runs in five games, and while it is a small sample size, their 30.1% strikeout rate is behind only the 31.2% of the Mariners. The Athletics have just two home runs, six doubles, two triples and 11 RBIs. That is basically the same production that Mookie Betts has accrued in his seven games (four dingers, three doubles, one triple, 12 runs and 10 RBIs), which is an interesting comparison.

Main Slate Secondary Pitching Target: RHP Shane Bieber at Seattle Mariners — 3.7 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $8,800 | FanDuel $10,200 | Yahoo $51

Last night RHP Triston McKenzie struggled a bit, though he did have his moments. While he did not come through for his supporters, including this author, the Mariners did get a little lucky. It was Dominic Canzone’s seventh career round-tripper that put three runs on the board, with four of the five given up by McKenzie being earned. That makes 15 total runs through five games for Seattle, which is among the dregs of the league.

Tonight we can go back to the well with RHP Shane Bieber, who is coming off a gem of an outing in Oakland, authoring six scoreless innings and 11 whiffs against just five baserunners. Injuries have mucked things up for “The Biebs,” but for his career in 135 outings, he has a 3.25 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings.

The projected lineup for Seattle did have an excellent .186 ISO last year, but this collective crew also had a 24.6% strikeout rate against right-handed pitching, with four batters — Mitch Haniger (29.8%), Jorge Polanco (28.1%), Mitch Garver (25.9%) and Cal Raleigh (27.3%) — all whiffing well above league average.

Keep in mind that, while Seattle has a retractable roof, it is more like a carport, in that it is not an enclosed stadium. That means the cold and damp weather with mid-40s temperatures will not be kept at bay. That is a boost for both pitchers in what should be a fun duel as ace RHP Luis Castillo will be toeing the rubber for the Mariners.

MLB DFS Picks: Top Stacks

Main Slate Primary Target: Atlanta Braves at LHP Garrett Crochet — 5.4 implied runs

First Pitch: 7:40 p.m. ET

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool loves Atlanta today, and it looks like the weather should clear out around first pitch or shortly thereafter. Similar to writing up Coors Field Extravaganzas, Atlanta is a team that will not often be featured in this article series, even though it will have a default position as a top-5 stack most slates. However, since it is early in the year and they have not yet graced these pages, here are the Bravos!

Unfortunately for fans in the ATL, catcher Sean Murphy is sidelined with a strained oblique. Of course, this being the Braves, they still have Travis d’Arnaud, who can slot right into the lineup and is just two seasons removed from being an All-Star. The rest of the lineup is loaded, with stalwarts Ronald Acuna Jr., Ozzie Albies, Austin Riley and Matt Olson starting the fun. Any of these guys would be the best hitter on the bottom 10 teams in the league, so having them all together is just ridiculous.

Michael Harris II is going to be an excellent leadoff hitter at some point, but for now he is in the bottom third of the lineup, which in turn also elevates the already-solid veteran duo of Marcell Ozuna and Adam Duvall. Then there is last year’s All-Star shortstop Orlando Arcia to round things out.

Main Slate Secondary Target: San Diego Padres vs. RHP Miles Mikolas — 4.1 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:40 p.m. ET

Houston looks to be in a good spot against the mercurial RHP Jose Berrios, while Arizona gets LHP Nestor Cortes, who is rather hittable when he is not in Nasty Nestor mode. However, differentiation looks like it can be found with the Padres against RHP Miles Mikolas. In a fun twist, about a million years ago — or in 2012 — Mikolas actually made his MLB debut with San Diego. He had two seasons with the Friars before spending a year with Texas, and then he headed overseas to Japan for three more seasons.

Since returning to The Show with St. Louis in 2018, Mikolas has been an effective pitcher at times, but each year his skills have eroded and his best attribute is taking the ball every five or so days. This is his age-36 campaign, and his paltry sub-16% strikeout rate is not doing him any favors. Lefties are the bane of Mikolas’ existence, so it is a shame there will only be two or three in the lineup, with Jake Cronenworth and switch-hitter Jurickson Profar being the two most likely candidates.

Losing Juan Soto’s bat from the lineup makes a big change, but Xander Bogaerts, Fernando Tatis and Manny Machado all have power upside and great contact rates in same-handed matchups.

Other DFS and Sports Wagering Opportunities

Tonight we can look to Javier Assad in the sports wagering market with his +104 prop to record fewer than five strikeouts. The True Odds feature on OddsShopper shows this bet has -104 “true odds,” and the +104 line currently available at FanDuel provides a reasonable 4.0% expected return on investment (ROI).

Last year Assad had a 20% strikeout rate to batters swinging the stick from both sides of the plate. The hope here is that Assad goes five or fewer innings, which does not allow him time to compile many strikeouts. Last year in his 10 starts, he had more than four strikeouts three times and exactly four three times.

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Final Thoughts for Tuesday, April 2 — MLB DFS Picks

Watch out today for April showers, with Chicago seeing the last of yesterday’s storms moving out and the Mid-Atlantic likely standing by for at least one postponement on high alert in New York.

For the four-game early evening subslate, Baltimore and Philadelphia will also be impacted, so keep tabs on the forecast updates closer to first pitch from your favorite DFS resources.

Before you finalize your MLB DFS picks, check out today’s Stokastic MLB Live Before Lock Show, get 30% off the Stokastic MLB Packages including DFS Sims, Lineup Generator and Data, with promo code DINGER.

Eric "EMac" MacPherson won the 2007 Fantasy Baseball grand prize (trip for two to the MLB All-Star game) in the Roto format on ESPN. He won again in 2008, this time in the H2H format. As one of the early adopters of daily fantasy sports, EMac has been providing content for baseball and basketball as well as both professional and college football since 2012 for a variety of websites including DraftKings Playbook, FanVice, RotoWorld, Daily Fantasy Bootcamp, and RotoGrinders. He is well into his third decade of fantasy sports and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. Follow him on Twitter @EMacDFS or contact EMac by emailing [email protected].

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