This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
A 12-game slate awaits Friday evening, with first pitch coming at a traditional 7:05 PM ET. Weather looks favorable as of Friday morning.
Thursday rainouts have altered this pitching slate a bit, with both Luis Castillo ($10,100) and Yu Darvish ($9,100) being pushed back and seemingly into preferable matchups. Castillo isn't cheap, but he gets a rematch against a Detroit side he struck out 11 times in six frames in his last outing, and a team that's fanning 33.5 percent of the time. Darvish was hit much harder in his season debut (three runs over four innings) but faces a Pirates lineup that simply doesn't hit, carrying a measly 52 wRC+ and 25.8 percent K rate into Friday. Both set up for more stable cash floors than Mike Clevinger ($9,800) vs. white hot Minnesota and Blake Snell ($9,500) at Baltimore due to likely inning limitations.
Mike Minor ($8,700) should draw plenty of eyes at San Francisco. He threw 98 pitches in his first start, striking out six in five frames, and while he could stand to be more efficient, he'll get a light hitting Giants squad in a favorable ballpark. Perhaps he seems a bit too obvious as a secondary option.
Equally as obvious is Jordan Montgomery ($6,800), as the Yankees are huge favorites at (-200). Buyer beware, however, as he hasn't thrown yet to date, so workload is anyone's guess. The Red Sox do have a few bats that hit lefties well, and Montgomery has only a 21.9 percent career K percentage. It's hard to chase a win here if we don't know five innings are happening. I prefer Dallas Keuchel ($7,000) against Kansas City. He limited the mighty Twins over 5.1 innings in his debut by doing what he's known for, inducing a 61.1 percent ground ball rate, resulting in 19 FDP. Against a lesser offense, he should fall into 3x return.
The Rockies make their home debut Friday, so expect Rockies and Padres to be mainstays in most lineups. There's marginal savings in Charlie Blackmon ($4,000) over Nolan Arenado ($4,100) and Trevor Story, and Blackmon had a .466 wOBA, .363 ISO, 163 wRC+ and 45.7 percent hard hit rate at home against lefties last year. On the San Diego side, Fernando Tatis ($4,100) is off to a nice start and posted a .510 wOBA against lefties last year before injuries, though Manny Machado ($3,800) presents nearly as favorably (.441 wOBA, 177 wRC+, .370 ISO) at a marginal discount.
The secret is clearly out that Boston's pitching is awful, so the Yankees make for a pivot from Coors Field, facing Ryan Weber ($5,500), who allowed six runs in 3.2 frames against Baltimore in his first start. Lefties teed off on Weber for a .402 wOBA last year, so maybe sneaking in some value in Aaron Hicks ($2,900) and/or Brett Gardner ($2,600) pairs well with bigger names mentioned above, but there's no reason to fade Aaron Judge ($4,200) or Giancarlo Stanton ($3,900).
Atlanta has been wildly inconsistent out of the gate but has looked more comfortable since returning home, and lit up Rick Porcello ($6,500) for six runs and seven hits over two innings in route to 14 total runs last week. The top of the order isn't firing yet, which could make Ronald Acuna ($3,900) or Ozzie Albies ($3,600) appealing as low-owned, high-upside targets, but I'm much more interested in Marcell Ozuna ($3,600) and Dansby Swanson ($3,200), the latter of which has hit safely in every game to date, and the former in all but one.
Oakland bats haven't started hot either, and while the price points are stackable, there's definite bust potential in owning multiple parts. I assume Taijuan Walker ($5,700) will be popularly targeted against, putting all of Matt Chapman ($3,700), Matt Olson ($3,600), Marcus Semien ($3,500) and Ramon Laureano ($3,400) in play. But the ballpark factor paired Walker's skewed results in his first appearance in arguably three years, against the Astros no less, gives me at least some pause on loading up.
San Diego leads the league in runs scored thus far, so if not paying up for their top bats, grabbing some secondary options makes plenty of sense. Wil Myers ($3,500), Trent Grisham ($3,300) lead the pack, while Edward Olivares ($3,000) is a nice GPP dart throw if starting.
If you're a BvP guy, Eduardo Escobar ($2,900) has taken Dodgers' spot starter Tony Gonsolin deep twice in five at bats against him. Across the field, LA's Edwin Rios ($2,200) is always a cheap power option if in the lineup.
Stacks to Consider
Splits here are largely irrelevant, with the Indians loaded with switch hitters, and Dobnak having minimal Major League innings. Cleveland's offense is in a favorable ballpark in Minnesota, and seemingly has an advantage on the mound. The worst case here seems to be the Twins offense knocking the ball around, even against Clevinger, and this affordable core is forced to keep pace.
Pick your poison from this lineup against Bubic, a lefty making his first appearance above Double-A, as no one is cost prohibitive. Moncada seems to be a stable anchor, while Abreu has always gotten it done against lefties, including his .420 wOBA and 168 wRC+ from a year ago. Anderson sets the table atop this lineup and presents well at a fair price, but paying for power upside in Eloy Jimenez ($3,400) or a slow-starting Edwin Encarnacion ($3,000) certainly are viable options.