Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks: Rankings, lineup advice for Thursday, May 4

Sporting News

As seems to be the case every time Max Scherzer takes the mound this year, he's clearly the top pitching option in daily fantasy baseball contests. But if you're not into chalk picks, there are several other capable hurlers you can work into your lineups, many of whom come at value prices.

Of course, we have to point out that Scherzer is one of 16 pitchers starting in the afternoon, leaving only 10 for the evening slate. Our top-six pitchers and seven of our top 10 are going during the day. With no true "aces" on the main slate, Chase Anderson (at STL), Adam Wainwright (vs. MIL), and Dan Straily (at TB) jump out as the best plays. While Straily has an edge in strikeouts, Anderson has been a better pitcher this year. However, a matchup against Wainwright hurts Anderson's cause. Waino's standard numbers leave a lot to be desired, but his advanced numbers suggest he's pitched quite well this year. Once his ridiculous .439 BABIP evens out, Wainwright will start to look like his old self. (On the flip side is Philadelphia's Zach Eflin, whose .132 BABIP suggests a major fall is coming.)

While Scherzer is the best cash play in the afternoon, Ivan Nova isn't far behind. Danny Salazar and Michael Fulmer are both solid options, but their head-to-head showdown makes it tough to predict a win. The same goes for Derek Holland and Ian Kennedy, though Holland has the more favorable of their head-to-head matchup. Perhaps the best afternoon value is Colorado's Kyle Freeland, who's allowed one earned run or fewer in four of five starts this year and gets a very favorable road matchup in San Diego.

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Daily Fantasy Baseball Rankings: Pitchers

Rank

Pitcher

Team

Opp.

1

Max Scherzer, RHP

WAS

vs. ARI

2

Danny Salazar, RHP

CLE

at DET

3

Michael Fulmer, RHP

DET

vs. CLE

4

Ivan Nova, RHP

PIT

at CIN

5

Derek Holland, LHP

CWS

at KC

6

Kyle Freeland, LHP

COL

at SD

7

Chase Anderson, RHP

MIL

at STL

8

Adam Wainwright, RHP

STL

vs. MIL

C

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9

John Lackey, RHP

CHC

vs. PHI

10

Dan Straily, RHP

MIA

at TB

11

Ian Kennedy, RHP

KC

vs. CWS

12

A.J. Griffin, RHP

TEX

at HOU

13

Jharel Cotton, RHP

OAK

at MIN

14

Zack Wheeler, RHP

NYM

at ATL

15

Ariel Miranda, LHP

SEA

vs. LAA

16

Matt Andriese, RHP

TB

vs. MIA

17

Zach Eflin, RHP

PHI

at CHC

18

Joe Musgrove, RHP

HOU

vs. TEX

19

Luis Perdomo, RHP

SD

vs. COL

20

Jaime Garcia, LHP

ATL

vs. NYM

21

Alex Meyer, RHP

LAA

at SEA

22

Kyle Gibson, RHP

MIN

vs. OAK

23

Tim Adleman, RHP

CIN

vs. PIT

24

Kyle Kendrick, RHP

BOS

vs. BAL

25

Braden Shipley, RHP

ARI

at WAS

26

TBD

BAL

at BOS

Daily Fantasy Baseball Picks: Thursday, May 4

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8 Adam Wainwright, RHP STL vs. MIL

All of the best pitchers are in the early slate, and even that has taken a hit with the Cleveland-Detroit game getting postponed. The Playbook probably features a few more expensive hitters than I would ideally like, but you should have plenty of money to afford them, unless you roll out Max Scherzer in the early slate. -- Steve Pimental

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Pos

Player

Matchup

FD

DK

Y!

Analysis

SP

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SP

Adam Wainwright (R)

MIL@STL

$8000

$7400

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SP

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SP

Iván Nova (R)

PIT@CIN

$8600

$8700

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SP

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C

Tucker Barnhart (B)

PIT@CIN

$2200

$2700

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C

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C

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8

Adam Wainwright, RHP

STL

vs. MIL

C

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C

Yadier Molina (R)

MIL@STL

$2900

$3500

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1B

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1B

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1B

Josh Bell (B)

PIT@CIN

$2800

$3400

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1B

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1B

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1B

Marwin González (B)

TEX@HOU

$2800

$3000

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2B

Josh Harrison (R)

PIT@CIN

$3500

$3900

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2B

Daniel Murphy (L)

ARI@WSH

$4300

$4800

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2B

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2B

Dustin Pedroia (R)

BAL@BOS

$4200

$4300

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2B

Robinson Canó (L)

LAA@SEA

$5200

$4600

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2B

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2B

Josh Rutledge (R)

BAL@BOS

$3400

$2800

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3B

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3B

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3B

Kris Bryant (R)

PHI@CHI

$4400

$5000

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3B

Martín Prado (R)

MIA@TB

$2900

$3500

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SS

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SS

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SS

Addison Russell (R)

PHI@CHI

$3000

$3700

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SS

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SS

Aledmys Diaz (R)

MIL@STL

$3000

$4100

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CF

Mike Trout (R)

LAA@SEA

$6600

$5400

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DH

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CF

Lorenzo Cain (R)

CWS@KC

$3300

$3900

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RF

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CF

Keon Broxton (R)

MIL@STL

$3800

$3800

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LF

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RF

Josh Reddick (L)

TEX@HOU

$2700

$3600

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SP

Dan Straily (R)

MIA@TB

$8300

$9600

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