This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
A robust 12-game slate awaits Friday night, leaving no shortage of options to navigate. Weather could be an issue for New York and Washington.
Despite the plethora of games Friday, there's no obvious ace or sure-fire cash anchor on the mound. Carlos Carrasco ($11,000) leads the way and gets a better than expected Royals offense that he limited to three runs and eight hits while fanning 10 across 11 innings a year ago. Patrick Corbin ($10,100) looks like the better bet if we're spending for pitching against a woeful Pirates offense that has just a 19.4 percent hard-hit rate and 0.24 ISO against lefties thus far.
The next price tier seems to offer better win chances, with the Yankees' (-220) J.A. Happ ($9,200) presenting as a huge favorite against a White Sox lineup that is fanning 26.9 percent of the time against lefties. Jake Arrieta ($8,800) sets up as the likeliest chalk arm for cash against the lowly Marlins offense that's whiffing 32.4 percent of the time while posting just a .124 ISO against right-handers. The Red Sox and Dodgers are both huge favorites as well, but rolling with Eduardo Rodriguez ($9,000) or Julio Urias ($8,700) feels like straight win chasing. The former gets Baltimore, which has outperformed thus far, while the latter has to deal with an always dangerous Milwaukee.
Cheap arms don't look overly fruitful Friday. I personally want no part of Wade Miley ($7,000), as he has only a 6.17 K/9 rate over two starts and faces a red hot Mariners lineup that has a .430 wOBA and .356 ISO against lefties across 109 plate appearances. Trent Thornton ($7,800) presents the best on paper. He's struck out 15 in 10.2 innings, while the Rays have a 25.7 percent fan rate against righties while posting only a .164 ISO. Given the depth of the slate, it may not be the worst time to use Rays' opener Ryne Stanek ($5,000). If some clarity about his role after the first inning is offered before first pitch, a few shutout innings at this price can go a long way.
Boston bats figure to be very popular staples here at home against Baltimore's David Hess ($4,600), who doesn't strike out many and has already allowed three long balls in 13.1 innings. Building around Mookie Betts ($5,400) or J.D. Martinez ($5,000) works, as would stacking any of Andrew Benintendi ($4,600), Mitch Moreland ($4,500), Xander Bogaerts ($4,400) and Rafael Devers ($4,200) around an anchor.
Khris Davis ($4,900) has homered four times in his last two games, having touched up lefties five times already. It's left him sporting a ridiculous .552 wOBA, 267 wRC+ and .682 ISO against them entering a plus matchup against Drew Smyly ($6,300).
Ronald Acuna ($4,600) has homered in three straight while collecting seven hits in that stretch and has seen his price decrease $400 from Thursday with so many other options available. Mets' starter Zack Wheeler ($8,400) has surrendered 11 runs in his first 9.2 innings.
At 1B, Brandon Belt ($4,100) jumps out. He had a team-best .350 wOBA against righties last year and has a .375 ISO against them this year in a small sample size. The Giants may be too limited to suggest a stack against Chad Bettis, ($5,800) however. BvP folks will like Freddie Freeman ($4,600), as he's 10-of-19 with two homers against Wheeler.
Hunting for some cheaper options, looking into a few second-tier Astros could make sense against Wade LeBlanc ($6,400), who allowed a 4.44 xFIP to righties at home last year. Yuli Gurriel ($3,600) has a .393 wOBA and 196 wRC+ against southpaws since the start of last year, while Tyler White ($3,600) leads the team with a .415 wOBA in that stretch, should he find his way into Friday's lineup.
Colorado Rockies vs. Drew Pomeranz ($8,100); Nolan Arenado ($4,500), Trevor Story ($4,400), Charlie Blackmon ($4,400): The Rockies are cold out of the gate and aren't playing at home, which leads me to believe they'll be overlooked here, and their recent struggles have prices down. A .421/.344/.319 are the respective wOBAs on the road against lefties of these three from 2018. Maybe that makes Blackmon a punt in favor of a cheaper third, Ian Desmond ($3,400) or Yonathan Daza ($3,400) perhaps, but the Rockies shouldn't be overlooked on the road against Pomeranz, who has allowed three homers in his first nine innings.
Texas Rangers vs. Mike Fiers ($7,600); Joey Gallo ($4,900), Nomar Mazara ($4,200), Shin-Soo Choo ($4,200): This game has a nice 10.5 total, and while the A's offense is the obvious stack, the Rangers look to have some value and opportunity. Choo, likely leading off, has a .384 wOBA against righties since the start of 2018. Gallo has shown a willingness to walk and has a .290 ISO against opposite-arms. Mazara is a bit of a wildcard but offers a third left-handed bat to stack atop the order against Fiers.
Seattle Mariners vs. Wade Miley ($7,000); Mitch Haniger ($4,500), Edwin Encarnacion ($4,700), Domingo Santana ($4,700): Fading the high-priced Daniel Vogelbach ($4,800) against the lefty Miley makes sense, but stacking the rest of this surging offense also does. Haniger has a .392 wOBA against southpaws over the last year-plus. Encarnacion has a career .373 wOBA and .229 ISO against them, and Santana looks every bit the part of his 2017 version, where he posted a .377 wOBA and .218 ISO against lefties. I'm personally in favor of stacking this game if you can afford it.