This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
Saturday's eight-game evening slate features plenty of value options who aren't necessarily the lowest of the bunch. While this may not be as sexy as the punt play that produces 20 points, it should allow players to build a solid team from front to back.
Luis Castillo ($9,000) has shown flashes of brilliance, but inconsistent play has resulted in a 4.20 ERA. Things may be back on the uptick, as he's scored more than 20 DraftKings points a whopping seven times over his last 10 starts. It's also worth noting the Cardinals are a bottom-10 team against righty pitchers according to wOBA.
You wouldn't know it from looking at traditional stats, but Charlie Morton ($8,000) has the most effective curveball among qualified pitchers this season according to RAA (23.7). This puts him in a nice spot against the Marlins, who rate as a bottom-10 team against the bender. Morton has struck out the opposition 29 percent of the time this year, which should allow him to rack up points against a team that has logged the fifth-highest punchout rate in the league.
I generally try to list a value option as my third entry in this section, but it's hard to ignore what Chris Flexen ($8,400) has done at home this season having posted a 2.73 ERA across 82.1 frames at Safeco Field while only allowing a .275 wOBA to opposing hitters. Things only get more enticing when I see he'll face off against the D-Backs, who have kept the league's lowest wOBA against righties in 2021.
Humberto Castellanos will get another crack at the Mariners after the Seattle offense blasted him for five runs in just 3.2 innings last week. The 2.14 ERA he carried prior to the outing should continue to rise if the 4.77 xFIP from 24.2 frames is any indication. Kyle Seager ($5,200) hasn't hit much for average this season, but has made up for it with a robust .240 ISO in 525 at-bats.
Freddie Freeman's ($5,400) recent power numbers may not be quite as strong as we've come to expect, but he's maintained his status with a .393 wOBA against right-handed pitching in 365 at-bats. Meanwhile, Elieser Hernandez has been absolutely hammered by left-handed hitters this year having given up a .588 slugging percentage over 17.1 frames.
Chris Paddack has fallen a long way since showing promise as a rookie in 2019. The righty has been hit especially hard by same-handed opposition by allowing a .561 slugging percentage across 47.2 frames. Will Smith ($4,600) has quietly become one of the better power-hitting catchers over the last three seasons entering today with a .281 ISO against righty hurlers from 253 at-bats.
The first thing to remember is that "bargain" doesn't necessarily mean "low-salary". Such is the case with Joey Votto ($4,200), whose value appears to be off by several hundred dollars (at least) as he prepares to face Miles Mikolas and the Cardinals. Votto has logged a robust .343 ISO in 268 at-bats against righties this season, while Mikolas carries a 6.14 xFIP against lefties in 10 innings.
Corey Kluber has looked shaky following a stint on the 60-day IL due to a shoulder injury as the former Cy Young winner has allowed seven runs over 7.2 frames in two starts since returning. We can select a hitter like Michael Conforto ($3,500) to see if Kluber still has some rust to knock off with a .211 ISO and .343 wOBA over 242 at-bats against right-handed pitchers this year.
The Red Sox hadn't officially named a starter when this article was written, but all signs point to Connor Seabold getting the call to make his MLB debut against the White Sox. He looks to be a decent arm in Boston's pipeline, but showed signs of faltering in his first move to Triple-A Pawtucket with a 4.93 xFIP from 41.2 frames. Eloy Jimenez ($3,800) has excelled against righties this season to the tune of a .263 ISO and .391 wOBA over 99 at-bats.
Stacks to Consider
Atlanta's right-hand dominance somewhat limits our options, but DFS players should try to take advantage of any starter who has given up seven homers to lefties in just 17 innings. Albies seems like a good candidate to lead the charge having started off the final month with a .387 ISO across 31 at-bats.