This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
The final weekend of April kicks off Friday with13 games on the DraftKings MLB slate. The two games starting before 7:05 p.m. ET are excised, which is unfortunate given that it means you can't take advantage of the Pirates. However, I still have plenty of recommendations for you.
Nestor Cortes, NYY at BAL ($10,000): Jumping from the bullpen to the rotation last season, Cortes had a 2.90 ERA for the Yankees. This year, he's allowed only one run across three starts with 25 strikeouts. The Orioles were in the bottom five in runs scored last season, and so far they seemed primed to finish in that area again.
Adam Wainwright, STL vs. ARI ($9,400): Wainwright has had two impressive starts and two mediocre starts, but he also has a .400 BABIP that will regress toward the mean. He has a 3.22 FIP, and I'm feeling comfortable with his pitching performance. The Diamondbacks finished 25th in runs scored last year – even with their offense-friendly ballpark – and the offense is down near the bottom of the league again in 2022.
Alex Wood, SF vs. WAS ($8,700): Moving to the Giants' pitcher-friendly ballpark for 2021 benefited Wood, who posted a 3.58 ERA at home. He's only made one home start this season, but he still has a 2.51 ERA. The Nationals are in the bottom 10 in runs per game to start the campaign, and since Wood is a lefty he could, well, do better than most against Juan Soto? That's not nothing.
Brandon Belt ($5,400) may have hit .242 to start the season, but his .367 OBP shows that he's still getting on base. He's gotten on base at a .358 clip for his career, and he's hit four home runs in this campaign. It's usually not a good sign when your team has to state that you're staying in the starting rotation after one start, and that's what happened with Aaron Sanchez after he allowed four runs in 4.1 innings.
While Trea Turner ($5,300) will have to pick up the pace on the counting stats to replicate last season's 28 homers and 32 stolen bases, that's a minor quibble to be sure. He's batting .296 on the year and he has a .935 OPS at home in 2022. Turner also mashes lefties, and Tyler Alexander has allowed righties to hit .280 against him since 2020.
Last season was a down season for Xander Bogaerts ($5,000), but he still had a .295/.370/.493 slash line with 23 home runs. This year he's hitting .392, so it's all good to start 2022. Spenser Watkins has a 2.77 ERA, but his 5.92 FIP is in line with his 6.36 FIP last season. He's also allowed righties to hit .347 against him in his career, which is staggering.
After sitting out in 2020, Trey Mancini ($3,000) returned last season to hit .255 with 21 home runs. He's off to a slow start this year, but over the last two seasons he has an .896 OPS against lefties and an .829 OPS at home. Lefty Rich Hill is 42 now and he has a 5.62 FIP through three starts.
Stacks to Consider
It's been a brutal start to the season for Howard, which is saying something for a pitcher with a career 7.41 ERA. He's pitched five innings, allowed eight runs and given up five home runs. Howard would be a risk against any lineup but especially against the Braves.
Albies doesn't walk but he has plenty of other skills. Like, for example, hitting 30 home runs and stealing 20 bases in 2021 and hitting six homers this season. Olson made himself a hot trade prospect by hitting 39 home runs with a .911 OPS. This year, he's already slashed .315/.427/.521. You need a catcher for DraftKings, and d'Arnaud is off to a hot start, as he's hit .321 and slugged .482.
Bubic posted a 4.40 ERA over his first two seasons, but this year things have gone even worse. Through three starts he has a 14.14 ERA. Bubic is a lefty, so I have gone with three righties from the Yankees for this stack.
Judge has slugged .554 in his career and hit 39 home runs last season. He also has a 1.017 OPS versus lefties since 2020. LeMahieu hit over .300 in each of his first two seasons with the Yankees, and this year he has a .313 average. He's also showing some power again, having slugged .469. Kiner-Falefa doesn't have any power, but he's batted .275 over the last three seasons and stolen 20 bases last year.
In his first full season as a starter, Urquidy had a 4.13 FIP in 2021. This year he has a 5.52 ERA, and the concern is that he's allowed a home run in every single one of his starts. He'll probably do a bit better, but he's never proven himself to be even an average starter in this league.
Springer will be facing his old team, and his move to the Blue Jays has worked out smoothly. Since joining Toronto, he has a .271/.350/.553 slash line. I'm still betting on Bichette to turn things around, as he had an .827 OPS 2021 with 29 homers and 25 stolen bases. Gurriel doesn't walk, but he's a career .282 hitter with two 20-homer seasons to his name.