MLB DFS Picks, Spotlight Pitchers & Top Stacks: Really, the Pirates Offense?! (April 7)

Sunday brings wall-to-wall baseball, with the featured tournaments locking at 1:35 p.m. ET first pitch 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 Jack Flaherty and Cristopher Sanchez as today’s aces, with a mix of hitters throughout the slate.

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers and Top Stacks | April 7

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MLB DFS Picks: Spotlight Pitchers

Main Slate Primary Pitching Target: RHP Jack Flaherty vs. Oakland Athletics — 3.7 implied runs

First Pitch: 1:40 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $8,900 | FanDuel $9,700 | Yahoo $39

The Stokastic Top Pitchers Tool is once again recommending that we pick on the Oakland offense, this time with RHP Jack Flaherty. The 28-year-old was a noted prospected coming up through the St. Louis organization, though he never quite got over the hump to consistent frontline starter due to injuries. To his credit, he did lead the National League with a 0.968 WHIP across 33 starts in 2019, but between the pandemic and injuries, he has made only 65 total appearances in the four subsequent seasons.

Through the first part of the season, the Athletics have a 28.0% strikeout rate and an 80 wRC+, which rank third and fifth worst in the league. That is in line with the 27.0% strikeout rate tallied by the projected starting nine for the A’s. Flaherty is susceptible to left-handed power, but the weather and overall anemic offense should help him this afternoon.

Main Slate Secondary Pitching Target: LHP Cristopher Sanchez at Washington Nationals — 3.9 implied runs

First Pitch: 1:35 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $7,600 | FanDuel $8,300 | Yahoo $43

The game featuring the preferred duo of RHPs Triston McKenzie and Bailey Ober squaring off in Minnesota has heavy weather risk and is likely to be postponed. In that case, the “bail out” options would be RHP Kyle Gibson against the visiting Miami Marlins in a game that starts in the same window or, for those not willing to assume the risk or wait around, LHP Cristopher Sanchez in Washington taking on the Nationals.

The Nats have put together a lineup based on mostly contact hitters with low power (.119 ISO) and decent discipline (18.8% strikeout rate) against southpaws. The lineup will be laden with batters swinging the stick from the right side of the plate, but it will also likely include CJ Abrams (thumb) and Jesse Winker, who both fan at a high clip against fellow lefties. Aside from outfielder Lane Thomas and backup catcher Riley Adams, Sanchez should have the advantage over the rest of the lineup.

Late Slate Pitching Target: RHP Logan Webb vs. San Diego Padres — 3.6 implied runs

First Pitch: 4:05 p.m. ET

  • DFS Salary: DraftKings $8,000 | FanDuel $8,200 | Yahoo $38

Sadly, there are only two games for the late slate, with most teams currently in venues across the eastern half of the country. That has RHP Logan Webb standing out as the clear top option against a top-heavy San Diego offense. Webb is the proverbial “better in real life” pitcher, as he does not have a consistent enough strikeout baseline to make DFS gamers happy. Only once has he averaged more than a strikeout per inning for an entire season, but that should not be a surprise considering his elite 58% career ground ball rate.

Manny Machado, Fernando Tatis Jr., Jake Cronenworth and Xander Bogaerts are the only hitters to worry about. For the two-game slate, especially on DraftKings and Yahoo, do not be afraid to roster one or two of these bats in the same lineup as Webb.

MLB DFS Picks: Top Stacks

Main Slate Primary Target: Pittsburgh Pirates vs. RHP Dean Kremer — 5.5 implied runs

First Pitch: 1:35 p.m. ET

The Stokastic Top Stacks Tool, of course, says all signs point towards a good afternoon for the Atlanta offense against RHP Ryne Nelson. In a less obvious situation, the Pittsburgh Pirates are popping up with several key hitters in the Top Batters Tool, with the lefties seeing a surge against RHP Dean Kremer.

From time to time, the 28-year-old righty will pop up as a streaming option for season-long leagues or as an SP2 in the proper matchup. However, the default position will be to attack him with lefty-heavy lineups. Over the last season and change, Kremer has ceded nearly a .200 ISO to opposite-handed batsmen. That bodes well for Oneil Cruz, Jack Suwinski, switch-hitter Bryan Reynolds and the all-or-nothing bat of Rowdy Tellez. Tellez is key for this contrarian stack since his low salary makes everything work.

Mid-Afternoon Slate Target: Kansas City Royals vs. LHP Garrett Crochet — 4.6 implied runs

First Pitch: 2:10 p.m. ET

If only there were a pun that would have you in stitches with regards to LHP Garrett Crochet. It is a bit of a surprise seeing the 24-year-old in the rotation, as expectations were that he would be more valuable as a multi-inning reliever who could quell any opposing teams gaining traction. In the shortened 2020 season, Crochet actually averaged 100.2 mph on his fastball, which he threw 84.7% of the time. Of course, the human body is not designed for that sort of effort, so Crochet was lost for the 2022 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery. Upon his return to action last year, he averaged 96.3 mph on his fastball, and through his two starts this season he is at 97.0 mph.

The above may sound more like a case to roster Crochet, but we need to remember that Kansas City is looking at relatively warm weather approaching 70 degrees with a 15 to 20 mph breeze out to center field. Looking to the right-handed hitters with power in the Kansas City lineup will be key. Bobby Witt Jr., Maikel Garcia, Nelson Velazquez and veteran catcher Salvador Perez are the core four to target, with Hunter Renfroe an option if anyone is getting Sunday off.

Late Slate Target: Boston Red Sox at RHP Chase Silseth — 4.3 implied runs

First Pitch: 4:07 p.m. ET

Since he is scheduled to start against the Boston Red Sox, it is all but assured that RHP Chase Silseth will not be selling seashells by the seashore. He will likely be striking out his fair share of BoSox bats while also trying to reduce his unsightly double-digit walk rate, which was at 12.6% against lefties last season and 10.3% versus same-handed hitters.

Silseth also allows a fair amount of power to batters from both sides of the plate, so looking to the big boppers will be key. This includes Rafael Devers, Tristan Casas and Tyler O’Neill. Masataka Yoshida, Jarren Duran and even Enmanuel Valdez all have merit for full stacks or as one-offs.

Other DFS and Sports Wagering Opportunities

Somehow Maikel Garcia already has three home runs, which is wild considering he had four in his 538 plate appearances prior to this season. All of those came last year when he was a mainstay at the top of the Kansas City order. We need to remember that home run props are the longest of long shots, but they do have value when considering a lengthy time horizon.

Today in the sports wagering market. FanDuel is currently offering a line of +830 for Garcia to take one out of the yard. OddsShopper shows this bet has +717 “true odds,” and the +830 line currently available at FanDuel provides a phenomenal 13.8% expected return on investment (ROI).

Using OddsShopper to scan the entire marketplace, we can see that there are a lot of traps out there, with most books offering this prop between +500 and +600 lines. That is well below the +717 “true odds” and not worthwhile for a wager that is only likely to come to fruition about once in every 10 similar opportunities.

Did you know that you can get up to $1,500 in Bonus Bets paid back if your first wager does not win at BetMGM? Claim here today!

Final Thoughts for Sunday, April 7 — MLB DFS Picks

St. Louis looks like there will be a solid weather window to allow the game to play. Chicago and Minnesota may not be so lucky, so be sure to monitor your favorite DFS meteorologist resources.

Before you finalize your MLB DFS picks, check out today’s Stokastic MLB Live Before Lock Show. at 12:30 p.m. ET. Also 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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