This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
We have 12 games featured on the DraftKings main slate for Friday. The Red Sox head to New York to take on the Yankees at 7:05 EST, with a West Coast night cap between the Athletics and Mariners to close things out. It'll be the first Coors game of the year, which should attract the masses. Stacking that game makes a lot of sense from a cash game perspective, but to separate yourself in tournaments, two other teams on the slate could help you climb to the top.
Lance McCullers, HOU at LAA ($9,000) — McCullers looked fantastic in his first start after missing most of the 2019 season. He was able to reach a surprising 92 pitches on his way to six strikeouts and the win versus the Mariners. He historically has been better against left-handed batters, holding them to a .177 batting average since his last full season in 2018, but could face an Angels lineup without Mike Trout, which should help him navigate their roster that usually deploys five to six righties nightly. Having the benefit of the Astros bats to back him up also gives him a great chance at getting the win.
Luis Castillo, CIN at DET ($8,000) — Castillo just faced these same Tigers in his first start recording an eye popping 11 strikeouts and one walk. He should have a excellent opportunity to replicate that performance with the Tigers at the bottom of the league (0.205) in batting average and second to last averaging eight strikeouts over their last three games.
Freddie Freeman, ATL vs. NYM ($5,600) — after going 1-for-3 with a double and two walks, Freeman gets to face Rick Porcello again in less than a week. Overall he's 5-for-11 lifetime against the Mets pitcher and gets a platoon advantage, one that he was able to crush with a .310 batting average in 2019.
Wil Myers, SD at COL ($4,600) — Myers faces Jon Gray in Coors field. In his career he's hammered Gray to the tune of a 3.78 batting average and five home runs in 37 at-bats. Despite batting lower in the order, he has the advantage of strong hitters ahead of him who could set up some optimal situations where he can knock in some runs.
Michael Brantley, HOU at LAA ($2,800) — Brantley is inexplicably cheap for a hitter of his caliber. His price continues to drop for a guy hitting in the heart of a potent Astros batting order. He's averaging over 12 fantasy points in first six games and gets a platoon advantage today facing Matt Andriese. He could make for a nice one-off to help get in some of the higher projected team stacks on the slate.
Darin Ruf, TEX at SF ($2,400) — Ruf has added some much-needed power to an overall anemic Giants lineup. It's his first season after playing the last three in the Korean Baseball Organization. In his MLB career he's posted a .299 batting average against south paws and has gone 3-for-10 to start the season thus far. He also possesses the ability to steal a base from time to time adding to his potential ceiling.
Stacks to Consider
After crushing Porcello less than a week ago, the Braves get to face him again in Atlanta. The trio went 7-for-14 with a home run each for Albies and Swanson. The nice thing about this stack is that it fills three positions without taking up the valuable OF spots. There's a slight chance of rain for this one, so stay updated on the weather as we get closer to lock.
The Yankees may get overlooked on this slate with most gravitating toward the two teams in Coors. It's rare to get the Yankees as a contrarian plays, so that makes a stack with them a great way to separate yourself in tournaments, as they always provide tremendous upside with their seemingly endless line of power bats. Two of the three listed are batting over .400 to start the season and face a Red Sox pitcher who gave up six runs and two homers in his first start against Baltimore.