DraftKings MLB: Weekend Value Plays

DraftKings MLB: Weekend Value Plays

This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.

All player prices are as of Friday, June 19

Pitchers

Carlos Carrasco, CLE (Fri. vs. TB), $8800 – There are a ton of attractive pitching options Friday night, ranging from Eduardo Rodriguez ($6600) and Kyle Hendricks ($6900) on the low end to Chris Sale ($11,900) at the very top. Although you probably can't go wrong with any of the four pitchers who are more costly, Carrasco makes for a nice bargain at $8800, offering the same upside as his $10,000+ counterparts. His 4.38 ERA is largely the product of a .342 BABIP and 67.8 percent strand rate, with his strikeout rate (27.4) good for ninth among qualified starters and his K-BB% (21.6) good for 12th. Facing a Tampa Bay team that's 23rd in strikeout rate (21.4 percent), Carrasco should put up 20-plus DraftKings points for a sixth time in seven outings.

Francisco Liriano, PIT (Sat. afternoon at WAS) – Liriano is arguably in the midst of the most dominant stretch of his career, or at least his most dominant run since he left Minnesota. He's topped 20 DraftKings points in each of his last five starts, averaging 31.8 while compiling an insane 47:6 K:BB ratio. Liriano will face a Nationals team that's been middle-of-the-pack in nearly all key measures against lefties this season, but there's a pretty good chance he won't have to deal with Bryce Harper (hamstring), who owns a 1.107 OPS against southpaws. Take away the MVP frontrunner – not to mention Ryan Zimmerman (foot) and Jayson Werth (wrist) – and facing the Washington lineup looks like a cakewalk.

Noah Syndergaard, NYM (Sat. night at ATL) – Saturday night's slate lacks high-upside pitching options, with Syndergaard the notable exception. His results haven't been consistent thus far, but nobody's questioning his talent, and it's hard to argue with a 22-year-old rookie who has a 3.76 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and 45:8 K:BB ratio through the first 40.2 innings of his career. More impressive than the ace-level peripherals in a small sample size, Syndergaard is coming off an 11-strikeout, one-run outing against the terrifying Toronto lineup. The Braves may not strike out a lot, but they also pack far less punch than the mighty Blue Jays.

Masahiro Tanaka, NYY (Sun. vs. DET) – I feel like I should put up a Tanaka bias warning because I take him pretty much every chance I get. It's odd to say as a Red Sox fan, but Masahiro is my favorite pitcher in all of baseball, with apologies to Zack Greinke (not like the Red Sox have a viable candidate for this highly-coveted honor). In any case, Tanaka being my favorite pitcher probably has something to do with the fact that he's seemingly always underpriced by at least a few hundred dollars on DraftKings. And he's looked like his usual dominant self since returning from the disabled list, allowing four runs while posting a 21:0 K:BB ratio in three starts. Now entering his fourth start since returning, he may finally get back above the 100-pitch barrier, though it's not as if he needs to hit that mark to surpass value, as he recently piled up 34 DK points on just 78 pitches. The matchup is obviously a tough one, but you're still getting a first-tier ceiling at a second-tier price.

Other options:Chris Sale, CWS (Fri. vs. TEX), $11,900; Kyle Hendricks, CHC (Fri. at MIN), $6900; Gio Gonzalez, WAS (Sat. afternoon vs. PIT); Corey Kluber, CLE (Sat. night vs. TB); Trevor Bauer, CLE (Sun. vs. TB)

Batters

C Jonathan Lucroy, MIL (at COL), $4000 – Things may not be getting any better for the Brewers as a whole, but with four multi-hit performances in his last five games, Lucroy finally seems to be coming around at the plate. Although he still figures to experience a dip from his 2012-2014 level of performance, the 29-year-old backstop can safely be regarded as one of the top three or four batters at his position. Best of all, he gets to spend the weekend at Coors Field, starting with a Friday matchup against left-handed Jorge De La Rosa, followed by matchups with right-handed Chad Bettis (Saturday) and left-handed Chris Rusin (Sunday).

1B Adam LaRoche, CWS (vs. TEX), $3400 – I don't like doing holdover picks from the previous week, but it's often unavoidable that the same players will present excellent value, and I'd rather not avoid discussing them just for the sake of variety. LaRoche didn't come through last weekend and is now stuck in a bit of a slump, which means he'll carry a reduced price into a set of matchups that gives him an excellent change to break said slump. Texas' Colby Lewis, Nick Martinez and Yovani Gallardo have all gotten decent-to-strong results this season, but none of the three is an especially good pitcher, and all three are right-handed. While it's often hard to pass on the big boppers at first base, LaRoche offers plenty of power potential at a much lower price.

2B Kolten Wong, STL (at PHI), $3400 – Another holdover from last week, Wong also hasn't been at his best lately, but the price still seems like a mistake. He cost $4000+ all week, and he's now at just $3400 for a matchup with Phillies right-hander/scrub Phillippe Aumont at hitter-friendly Citizens Bank Park. The price is probably too good to last long, but if it does, Wong draws a couple more favorable matchups, facing Aaron Harang (Saturday) and TBA (Sunday). Given that we're dealing with the Phillies, it's safe to assume TBA won't be anyone good.

3B Matt Carpenter, STL (at PHI), $3700 – Another oddly cheap St. Louis infielder playing at Citizens Bank Park, Carpenter has actually been pretty decent of late, unlike his aforementioned teammate. The favorable DK prices may not be the week's biggest news involving the Cardinals organization, but it's certainly at the top of my radar. Baseball's best fans or not, the Cards look like baseball's best stacking option for Friday night, even with their current lineup. Also, I'm leaning toward not.

OF Carlos Gonzalez, COL (vs. MIL), $4500 – I'm not sure that the old Carlos Gonzalez is back or ever will be, but whoever this dude may be, he's red-hot heading into a series full of favorable matchups at Coors Field. CarGo enters Friday with homers in three straight games, with four long balls in his last six. The recent hot streak has his slash line up to a respectable .243/.310/.423, and the Rockies get to face Taylor Jungmann (Friday), Kyle Lohse (Saturday) and Matt Garza (Sunday) this weekend.

OF Melky Cabrera, CWS (vs. TEX), $3500 – Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me 10 times, you must be named Melky. I'm not sure why I keep doing this to myself, especially for a player with middling (at best) power, but I just can't resist reduced-price Melky in favorable matchups. Though I did manage to quit for a while, his recent mini-hot streak has me right back on board. Sure, this hasn't exactly been convincing, but look at the track record, price, ballpark and matchups! This is the weekend. It really is.

Other options:C Yasmani Grandal, LAD (vs. SF), $4000; C/OF Kyle Schwarber, CHC (at MIN), $3400; 1B/OF Brandon Moss, CLE (vs. TB), $4300; 2B/3B Anthony Rendon, WAS (vs. PIT), $4200; 2B Jose Altuve, HOU (at SEA), $3900; 3B Josh Donaldson, TOR (vs. BAL), $4900; 3B/OF Brock Holt, BOS (at KC), $3300; SS Carlos Correa, HOU (at SEA), $3900; OF Charlie Blackmon, COL (vs. MIL), $4300 OF Joc Pederson, LAD (vs. SF), $4000; OF Dexter Fowler, CHC (at MIN), $3900; 1B/OF Ben Paulsen, COL (vs. MIL), $3400

Lineup Stacks

Friday

Marlins at CIN's Anthony DeSclafani
Brewers at COL's Jorge De La Rosa
Yankees vs. DET's Alfredo Simon
Rockies vs. MIL's Taylor Jungmann
Cardinals at PHI's Phillippe Aumont
White Sox vs. TEX's Colby Lewis
Orioles at TOR's Marco Estrada
Pirates at WAS's Joe Ross

Saturday afternoon

Blue Jays vs. BAL's Kevin Gausman
Cubs at MIN's Trevor May
White Sox vs. TEX's Nick Martinez
Orioles at TOR's Mark Buehrle

Saturday night

Padres at ARI's Robbie Ray
Reds vs. MIA's Tom Koehler
Astros at SEA's Taijuan Walker
Indians vs. TB's Erasmo Ramirez

Sunday

Blue Jays vs. BAL's Chris Tillman
Marlins at CIN's Michael Lorenzen
Brewers at COL's Chris Rusin
Mariners vs. HOU's Vincent Velasquez
Cubs at MIN's Kyle Gibson
Indians vs. TB's Alex Colome
Orioles at TOR's Scott Copeland

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Jerry Donabedian plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: jd0505, DraftKings: jd0505.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jerry Donabedian
Jerry was a 2018 finalist for the FSWA's Player Notes Writer of the Year and DFS Writer of the Year awards. A Baltimore native, Jerry roots for the Ravens and watches "The Wire" in his spare time.
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