MLB DFS Picks, Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks: Can Aaron Nola Get Back on Track?! (June 5)

Monday kicks off the work week with a seven-game featured slate beginning at 6:40 p.m. ET on DraftKings and FanDuel. Yahoo is rolling with a five-game featured slate and the standard 7:05 p.m. ET lock. Before you build lineups, several Stokastic tools can help identify daily MLB DFS Top Stacks, key pitchers and MLB DFS picks. Let’s dig into the player projections and popularity for DraftKings, FanDuel and Yahoo lineups, including RHP Aaron Nola and the Phillies offense.

MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers and Top Stacks

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers

Main Slate Primary Pitching Target: RHP Aaron Nola vs. Detroit Tigers — 3.4 implied runs

First Pitch: 6:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $10,200 | FanDuel $10,000 | Yahoo $48

The matchup is glorious, but RHP Aaron Nola’s results have been atrocious … well, for him anyway. To be fair, his six May starts resulting in a 2-2 record, 4.93 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and eight home runs allowed are not bad considering the opponents. In this stretch of games (at Mets, at Braves, vs. Cubs, at Rockies, vs. Blue Jays and at Dodgers), he ran the gauntlet of some of the best offenses in the league, plus a game in Coors Field. He had 37 strikeouts in 38.1 innings, so that is a positive trend after just 28 strikeouts in his first six starts spanning 36.1 innings. Looking at his numbers, the fastball is down a tick to 91.7 mph, and over the last three starts, Nola has been going to his curveball 30% of the time. Otherwise, things look similar to his last couple of campaigns.

Hopefully the cushy matchup against the Detroit offense has Nola rebounding back to his expected fantasy form. In 36 of 57 (63.2%) of their games, the Motor City Kitties have scored four or fewer runs. The Phillies plated 11 runners on Sunday, while the Tigers managed only 12 total runs in their seven games last week. It makes sense to join The Masses in rostering Nola as the primary cash game pitcher today.

Main Slate Wild Card Pitching Target: LHP Andrew Abbott vs. Milwaukee Brewers — 4.7 implied runs

First Pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $4,000 | FanDuel n/a | Yahoo $29

This is an interesting spot for rookie LHP Andrew Abbott, who will be making his debut against the mercurial offense of the Milwaukee Brewers. Though the Brew Crew has been a bottom-5 team against southpaws both this season and since the beginning of last year, they still have enough talent to make things uncomfortable for a first-timer. There are plenty of strikeouts in the projected Milwaukee lineup as well as a lack of overall power. Catcher William Contreras, former National League MVP and two-time batting champion Christian Yelich, and veteran Brian Anderson will be the main hurdles for Abbott to clear tonight.

Abbott was a second-round selection in the 2021 MLB Draft, and he rates out as the fifth-best prospect in the Cincinnati system while also cracking a few of the league-wide Top 100 lists. The 24-year-old basically broke the stat systems in his three Double-A starts, posting 20.68 strikeouts per nine innings, a -0.49 FIP and 0.18 xFIP. I truly did not realize that FIP could be negative.

Across 38.1 innings at Triple-A, Abbot struck out 12.68 batters per nine innings and recorded a 94.2% left-on-base rate. Control will be an issue, but otherwise we could be looking at a real-life version of Ebby Calvin “Nuke” LaLoosh. For those of you in season-long leagues, do not be lollygaggers — instead, rush to your waiver wires to see if this phenom is available.

Late Slate Pitching Target: LHP Blake Snell vs. Chicago Cubs — 3.8 implied runs

First Pitch: 9:10 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $9,700 | FanDuel $9,500 | Yahoo $38

Oh boy, another slate where gamers will be flocking to LHP Blake Snell. What could possibly go wrong?! The current collection of Cubs is actually above average against southpaws, with a 116 wRC+ since the beginning of last season. Their .171 ISO is in the top third of the league, though that is offset by a 23.8% strikeout rate, which is the fifth highest. When Snell is getting ground balls (only 37.1% over his last 846 batters faced), he avoids home runs and racks up strikeouts. Sadly, his nearly 40% fly ball rate makes rostering him a rollercoaster ride.

Chicago will be rolling out a lineup filled with right-handed hitters, though that is nothing new for Snell, and he actually has a 30.3% strikeout rate in his last 677 opposite-handed matchups. It makes sense to have a hedge stack or two with Cubbies for the leverage, and on the two-game late slate, taking a hitter or two against Snell in the same lineup is perfectly fine and a way to capture the inevitable home run.

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MLB DFS Picks: Top Stacks

Main Slate Primary Target: Philadelphia Phillies vs. LHP Joey Wentz — 5.3 implied runs

First Pitch: 6:40 p.m. ET

Congratulations are in order for LHP Joey Wentz, as he limited the Texas Rangers to just one run in 4.1 innings during his last appearance. Of course, he was bound to get lucky at some point, but tonight we will want to load up on the Phillies power bats. Wentz has allowed at least five runs in five of his 11 starts, and though he has suffered “only” nine longballs, opposing lineups are racking up 4.1 extra-base hits per nine innings, with runners almost always on base.

We all know that Trea Turner has been in a major slump, with only one home run in the last month, but he stands out as strong option in the DFS world as well as in the sports wagering market. Looking at the new “True Odds” feature on OddsShopper, we can see that the +420 line for Turner is actually mispriced, with the MLB Bet Pro probability having this as a +388 line. That is like getting an 8% booster from the sportsbook, without having to do any extra work.

For those looking to a longshot, high-payout wager, Edmundo Sosa is +700 to hit a home run but also +240 to surpass his 1.5 total bases prop. Though he is likely to be towards the bottom of the order, one swing of the bat against a subpar pitcher can be a nice bankroll padder.

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Nick Castellanos and catcher J.T. Realmuto are strong options from the right side of the plate, and Bryce Harper and Kyle Schwarber can more than hold their own against fellow lefties. By using Sosa as part of a wraparound stack, differentiation is available against the other Philadelphia stacks.

Main Slate Secondary Target: Cincinnati Reds vs. RHP Julio Teheran — 5.1 implied runs

First Pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET

Borrowed time is a phrase that can be applied to RHP Julio Teheran, who has logged just 16 MLB innings since 2020. His 90 mph fastball and 86 mph cutter are only going to fool hitters for so long, and his lack of strikeouts is alarming to say the least. The Regression Monster is lurking and closing in on the 32-year-old journeyman.

Even though the Cincinnati offense has been anemic over the last two seasons, with an 83 wRC+ against right-handed pitching, youngsters Jake Fraley, Spencer Steer, Jonathan India and Matt McLain have all flashed upside and are getting better and better as each month passes. Additionally, the Stokastic Top Stacks tool has identified Cincinnati as an excellent secondary source of fantasy production.

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Late Slate Target: Texas Rangers vs. RHP Adam Wainwright — 5.2 implied runs

First Pitch: 8:05 p.m. ET

It looks like this could be the end of the line for RHP Adam Wainwright, who will be 42 years old in August. From the pandemic-shortened 2020 season through last year, the venerable veteran logged 463.2 innings and a stellar 3.34 ERA that was actually below his 3.41 career mark. Though he still has one of the best curveballs in the game, that can only take him so far, with his 87 mph fastball dropping a tick each of the last three seasons. Waino is a gamer and he still does a good job of limiting power, but he is no match for the ferocious Texas offense.

This season the Rangers have scored 376 runs, which is 21 more than Tampa Bay and 45 more than the Los Angeles Dodgers. No other offense is within 70 runs, which is just absurd considering we are barely one-third of the way through the schedule.

Marcus Semien, Corey Seager, Nate Lowe and Adolis Garcia are as good as any other core four in the league. Budding slugger Josh Jung is a terrific option at the hot corner, and switch-hitting Jonah Heim is a great way to check off the catcher requirement on DraftKings and Yahoo. Leody Taveras is a pesky nine-hole hitter with above-average pop and speed. Plus, he is almost assured of scoring a run whenever he gets on base with the loaded lineup rolling over to the top of the order. Oh, Mitch Garver is back, and the oft-injured catcher is more of a designated hitter these days, but he just adds to the fantasy upside of this stack whenever he is in the lineup.

Final Thoughts for Monday, June 5 | MLB DFS Picks

There are no precipitation risks for Monday, which is one less headache to account for. Enjoy the baseball!

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Eric MacPherson
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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