With an action-packed 7-game MLB DFS main slate on Saturday night, Fantasy Alarm has you covered with its flagship MLB DFS Playbook!



If you played the Saturday early slate, welcome back to the main slate Playbook. Hopefully, your earlier ventures on DraftKings and FanDuel proved to be fruitful. We highlighted a number of top plays that seem to have started well – yes, I'm looking at the early returns on our New York Yankees suggestions – and we expect that to continue. But now it's time to focus on the main slate. As mentioned, it's a 7-game slate and we dive in head first with the research here.

As always, to help you with your research, be sure to check out the following MLB Tools while building your lineups:

  • MLB DFS Projections – updated multiple times throughout the day
  • MLB DFS Ownership Projections – updates have been made for the early slate here on Saturday.
  • MLB Lineups – our lineups page updates once a team's lineup is announced but also houses a number of stats and splits you need to know.
  • MLB Weather Center – be sure to always check and make sure there is no inclement weather in the forecast.
  • MLB Vegas Odds & Lines – always great to check up on which teams are projected to do the best according to Vegas.
  • MLB DFS Lineup Generator – take it for a spin and see how your lineups look in comparison to what our algorithm builds for you.

With all of that under your belt, you should have no problem building winning DFS lineups tonight!



MLB DFS Picks & Daily Fantasy Playbook Today, May 18 

MLB Weather Today, 5/18 

Potential showers late but not enough for any sort of delay

Some showers, potential delay but seems unlikely. Check back an hour before 7pm ET lineup lock

MLB DFS Lineup Construction Thoughts

First and foremost, it’s a slate where we are paying up for pitching. I genuinely hate all pitchers below $8,300 on DraftKings and would have a very difficult time using any of them. The softest match-up, at least on paper, would be the Los Angeles Angels, but if you’ve ever watched Jose Urena pitch, you’d know that he needs to be avoided. Could the sun shine on a dog’s ass once? Maybe, but I’m just not taking that chance.

That means we’re going to have to seek out some bargain bats to help us along. I’m all about paying down at the catcher position and there are some cheap outfielders we should be able to slide in, so finding the key spots to pay down should allow us at least one or two of the bigger bats. It’s definitely going to take some digging, but everyone will be in the same boat having to pay up for some starting pitching.



Recommended MLB DFS Starting Pitchers

Top Options for Strikeouts

Best Odds for a Win



Core MLB DFS Pitchers

Zac Gallen, Arizona Diamondbacks

While the Diamondbacks offense has failed us in recent weeks, Gallen continues to produce at a high level. Yes, he's had the occasional bump in the road, but name me one pitcher who hasn't. Gallen has tossed back-to-back quality starts and makes his first start at home in over a month. At home, Gallen has allowed just one earned run with 16 strikeouts over three starts (17 innings). The Tigers offense thumped Ryne Nelson and the bullpen yesterday, but have their work cut out for them against Gallen whose overall skill-set matches up very nicely against a team that fans almost 25-percent of the time and has just a .305 wOBA against righties this season. He'll be super chalky tonight, but that doesn't mean you avoid him.

Seth Lugo, Kansas City Royals

He's been ridiculously impressive this season posting a 1.66 ERA with a 0.96 WHIP and 48 strikeouts over 59.2 innings. Yes, you'd like a higher strikeout rate, especially on DraftKings, but he should help out in that department against an Oakland team that strikes out 26.2-percent of the time against righties and has seen that number spike to over 30-percent over the past week. On top of that, Oakland has the fourth-lowest wOBA (.255) over the past week and hasn't shown a lick of power, posting just a .112 ISO over that span.

Kutter Crawford, Boston Red Sox

Boston fans will hate me for saying it, but you may as well lock in Crawford until his arm falls off. We just got word that Garrett Whitlock is being shut down again and with the Red Sox mandating their pitchers throw mostly breaking stuff, arms are going to continue falling apart. But that hasn't happened yet and Crawford gets a soft match-up against a perpetually struggling Cardinals lineup. St. Louis is striking out 24-percent of the time against righties and while they've enjoyed a nice run as of late, thair success has come against a very weak Angels rotation. I expect Crawford to stifle the bats tonight.

Justin Verlander, Houston Astros

It's tough to not love Verlander in any match-up, especially after watching him dominate almost every lineup he's faced this season, save for the Yankees. His overall numbers are fantastic and we know that, even at the age of 41, he is one of the most effective hurlers in the game. I do have some concerns with the fact that the Brewers lineup has been on-fire lately – .364 wOBA with a .198 ISO over the last seven days – and has posted the second-highest wOBA (.342) against righthanded pitching all year. But they are also striking out roughly 24-percent of the time, so while Verlander may give up a run or two, he should rack up enough strikeouts to pay us off.

Walker Buehler, Los Angeles Dodgers

This one has some risk but I'm likely to drop Buehler into a GPP tournament. This will be his  third start since coming off the injured list and he's thrown 77 pitches in each start, so there are still questions surrounding how deep he will be allowed to go in this outing. We know he's capable of striking out a batter per inning and the hope here is that, not only does he go at least five innings, but that the Reds, who whiff 27-percent of the time against righties, are as over-aggressive as ever and he racks up a few extra here and there.



Recommended MLB DFS Hitters

Highest Expected Run Totals

Core MLB DFS Hitters

*Note: Will Be Updated As Official Starting Lineups Are Released

Bobby Witt, SS Kansas City Royals

You don't need me to tell you that Witt is a must-play if you can afford it, but just in case, I'd like to remind you of this match-up against Ross Stripling. I actually want to create a nice Royals stack to surround Witt, but will happily use him as a one-off as well. He faced some tough starters in Seattle, so facing Stripling will be like swinging a bat with the donut taken off for him. 

Marcus Semien, 2B Texas Rangers

He homered late in Friday's game and has now homered in back-to-back games while also hitting safely in eight of his last 10. He should have little to no issues with Patrick Sandoval who is allowing righthanded hitters to post a .331 wOBA against him and Semien is crushing lefties this season with a .344 average and a .246 ISO.

Jarren Duran, OF Boston Red Sox

We're going to want to get some Boston lefties into our lineup and while Rafael Devers is on the wish-list, we are going to have to find some ways to save some money. Not that Duran is cheap, but as the leadoff hitter against Miles Mikolas, he is going to find multiple ways to stuff the stat sheet for us tonight.

Jackson Merrill, OF San Diego Padres

We need a salary-saver and the outfield is usually a good place to find it. Merrill has eight hits in his last five games, but one of those games he entered as a pinch-hitter, so really it's eight hits in his last four. He's only got one extra-base hit ( a home run) in that span, but he also has three stolen bases, so if he's going to remain this aggressive on the basepaths, I'll happily jam him into a lineup at his current price tag.

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Player Pool

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