MLB DFS Picks, Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks: Shohei Ohtani and Kyle Schwarber Stand Out (April 29)

Monday brings a mix of MLB action, with the fun getting underway at 7:07 p.m. ET on DraftKings and FanDuel, while Yahoo is reaching forward to include the 6:35 p.m. ET games for their featured contests. Before we get to our MLB DFS picks, as always, we will use Stokastic’s tools to help identify today’s MLB DFS stacks, key pitchers and daily fantasy baseball lineups. Look to Joe Ryan and Nick Lodolo as key arms, with the Dodgers and Phillies being top stacks.

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers and Top Stacks | April 29

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers

Main Slate Primary Pitching Target: RHP Joe Ryan at Chicago White Sox — 3.4 implied runs

First Pitch: 7:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $10,400 | FanDuel $10,900 | Yahoo $50

The Stokastic Top Pitchers Tool has RHP Joe Ryan as the best pitcher tonight. This should be pretty obvious to even casual observers since he is one of the more talented arms in action and going against the injury-riddled White Sox. After a franchise-worst 3-22 record in the first 25 games, Chicago has rolled off three consecutive victories, sweeping Tampa over the weekend. This coincides with veteran Tommy Pham joining the team, though the 36-year-old journeyman is not the reason the team has seen a reversal of fortune. Louis Robert Jr. and Yoan Moncada remain out, leaving a major hole in the lineup that has Pham only getting action as a temporary stopgap.

Ryan has been outstanding this season, and he leads the league with a 9.5 strikeouts-to-walks ratio. Last year he was three strikeouts shy of the 200 milestone, and he has been even better this year with 11.9 per nine innings. Chicago is a mess on offense with the fewest runs in the league, and there are seven teams that have doubled up the ChiSox’s paltry 77 total. Enjoy!

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Main Slate Secondary Pitching Target: LHP Nick Lodolo at San Diego Padres — 4.1 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $9,800 | FanDuel $10,600 | Yahoo $41

Last year LHP Nick Lodolo suffered a stress fracture in his leg, which cost him most of the season and a lengthy offseason rehabilitation after a couple of setbacks. Tonight will be his fourth appearance of the season, and he threw 98 pitches in his last outing, so he is ready for a full workload.

Strikeouts are Lodolo’s calling card, and he has racked them up at an impressive clip of 11.52 per nine innings. Last year home runs were an issue, but pitching in Great American Ballpark is not a picnic. San Diego is a good offense, though it clearly misses Juan Soto. Strikeouts are the currency of the realm for MLB DFS, so trading off a few runs in exchange for a pitcher that could reach double-digit K’s is a savvy strategy.

Main Slate Wild Card Pitching Target: LHP Bailey Falter at Oakland Athletics — 3.9 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $6,500 | FanDuel $8,800 | Yahoo $36

Pittsburgh acquired LHP Bailey Falter for infielder Rodolfo Castro last season at the trade deadline. This was essentially a “change of scenery” deal for both players, as each had been scuffling along with their respective organizations. Falter had been a ranked prospect for Philadelphia but struggled when getting chances in The Show. He had a rough spring this year but still broke camp with the Pirates. The first start was a debacle as he allowed six runs in four innings, ceding two round-trippers. However, over his next four starts, he allowed four combined runs and just two home runs.

The main adjustment has been for the lefty to go back to using his fastball, which is not exactly blazing at 91 mph, but his unique arm slot and delivery help out by making it just a little different than what hitters typically see. Strikeouts have never really been a part of Falter’s game, so he is best suited as a discounted SP2 on DraftKings and Yahoo.

Oakland will be running out a righty-laden lineup, with outfielder JJ Bleday likely the only lefty. The Athletics are in the bottom third of the league against southpaws, with an 82 wRC+ while also striking out the seventh most at a 24.9% clip.

MLB DFS Picks: Top Stacks

Main Slate Primary Target: Los Angeles Dodgers at LHP Tommy Henry — 5.47 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:40 p.m. ET

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool loves that the Chase Field roof is scheduled to be open for this three-game series. That means the humidor will not have the usual effect it does when the roof is closed, so the baseball should be flying tonight. LHP Tommy Henry has surprised with nearly a strikeout per inning, though that is likely to regress. The 26-year-old also has underlying control issues, which lead to elevated extra-base hits as opposing teams pounce on his mistakes.

Look to the trio of MVPs at the top of the lineup tonight, as Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman and Shohei Ohtani are the most potent fantasy triad in the league. Catcher Will Smith and outfielder Teoscar Hernandez are elite against southpaws and actually have better numbers than Freeman and Ohtani this year. Skip over Kike Hernandez and Chris Taylor, as both veterans are lost at the plate and at risk of not even getting a full game in tonight.

Late Slate Target: Philadelphia Phillies at RHP Griffin Canning — 4.9 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:38 p.m. ET

Tonight the Phillies are continuing their SoCal sojourn with a three-game series in Anaheim. They will be facing RHP Griffin Canning, who loves to challenge opposing hitters, leading to strikeouts and elevated home runs. The soon-to-be 28-year-old has been unlucky with a 56.3% strand rate, but even normalizing his production via advanced metrics shows that he is only average on his best days.

DraftKings has made it interesting by ratcheting up the salaries for Trea Turner ($6,200), Bryce Harper ($6,000), Kyle Schwarber ($5,500) and catcher JT Realmuto ($5,000), though FanDuel did not follow suit. Yahoo landed in the middle of the salary range, so the popularity of this stack is all over the place depending on which site is being analyzed.

One other wrinkle today on DraftKings is that the salary algorithm has assigned 36 projected starters with a $3,000 cap hit or lower. The Phillies have a healthy .181 ISO this season against right-handed pitching, which makes them pop with a lot of green across the analytical dashboards. On the late slate, looking to the bottom of the order with Brandon Marsh, Bryson Stott and Nick Castellanos is a great way to create a contrarian approach.

Other DFS and Sports Wagering Opportunities

Tonight we can look to LHP Max Fried for the under on his 5.5 strikeouts prop, which is currently available on DraftKings with an enticing +125 line.

OddsShopper shows this bet has +113 “true odds,” and the +125 line provides a solid 5.4% expected ROI. We can see that the 47% probability of him falling short of this threshold is a minority of the time, so getting the plus money is crucial.

Fried projects for 5.8 strikeouts, and seeing PointsBet and Fanatics both offering a heavily juiced under 6.5 at -160 is a good indication that the expectation is Fried will fan half a dozen hitters. It will be cool in Seattle tonight with game-time temperatures in the upper-40s, which favors pitching. The projected lineup for the Mariners has a 26.3% strikeout rate against left-handed hurlers since the start of last year, which is a bonus for Fried, who is just above average himself.

In his five starts, Fried has tallied six strikeouts once, and that was in his last start when he threw a complete-game shutout against the Miami Marlins. He also has one start with five strikeouts, though overall he has only 18 across his 25.1 frames this season.

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Final Thoughts for Monday, April 29 — MLB DFS Picks

Weather is again an issue in the Midwest, with Detroit being the impacted location and a postponement is on the table. Be sure to check your favorite DFS meteorological resources closer to first pitch to see if there are any updates.

Before you finalize your MLB DFS picks, check out today’s Stokastic MLB Live Before Lock Show at 5:00 p.m. ET, brought to you by Sleeper – new users, use this link to receive a $500 first deposit match! Full details here.

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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