This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
13 games are included in Friday's main slate, but weather could reduce that some. Keep an eye on east-coast storms that could cause cancellations in Washington and/or New York. Detroit looks like a secondary concern, which is unfortunate because that's where I'm all in on a pitcher.
We've got a few big names atop this slate, but weather or the need to differentiate seem like the only reason to really pay up for the likes of Justin Verlander ($10,800) or Sean Manaea ($9,700), both of whom have solid to plus matchups. The clear target for me Friday is Shane Bieber ($8,600), weather permitting. Detroit's offense is just miserable. They've scored five or more runs just six times this season, and sport a .264 wOBA, 72 wRC+ and .101 ISO, the first number ranking 29th in the league. A 24.7 percent strikeout propensity gives Bieber upside, which he's shown in his last two starts, going for 40+ FDP, including 49 against this same lineup. He's starting to look "back" and the price doesn't tell that story.
The middle tier of arms seems to set up as a couple of soft matchups where we're not quite comfortable paying the number statistically. Austin Gomber ($7,700) gets a Nationals lineup that has only a .283 wOBA and .073 ISO against lefties, but fan only 17.8 percent while Gomber averages just 6.7 K/9. He did post 42 FDP against this lineup in Coors Field however. For the same price, we have Bailey Ober ($7,700) against a Royals offense with a 93 wRC+ and .129 ISO against righties, striking out 21.2 percent of the time against his career-low 7.3 K/9. He's been good at limiting damage, but hasn't worked deep into contests. The floor for both seems stable for both, but a lack of innings and/or strikeouts limits the ceiling.
Jon Gray ($7,100) is someone I still believe in for season-long leagues if he can get healthy, and his matchup Friday could be the springboard. He's quietly averaged 29.3 FDP in his last three starts, striking out 16 in as many innings. He's also faced some pretty decent offense, which he won't tonight against Oakland, who rank last with a .261 wOBA while fanning 24.3 percent of the time.
Yankee bats are a nightly consideration, even moreso against lefties, but they are saddled with injuries. You can either use Aaron Judge ($4,500, .304 ISO, 10.0 percent soft contact) and move on, or potentially stack the replacements on the cheap.
I'm not sure I'll ever get to a point of trusting Carlos Carrasco, and with weather concerns here, a stack probably isn't the right play. Bryce Harper ($4,300) is however, assuming they play. He collected nine hits in a four-game series at Atlanta, and boasts a .423 wOBA and .314 ISO against righties to date.
The top of the Dodger lineup is cooking, but Madison Bumgarner has had some decent success against the duo of Mookie Betts ($4,600), who's pricing himself out of being an option anyway, and Freddie Freeman ($3,700). That leads me to Trea Turner ($4,200) and his 18-game hitting streak, driving in 15 runs during.
Vladimir Guerrero ($3,600) has (finally) homered, now in consecutive outings. His price hasn't fully rebounded, but this is likely the beginning of the end of his appearance in this section. This lineup as a unit remains priced down and figure to be a popular stack Friday as a result.
It's a shame some of the best targets on this slate have weather concerns. I'm not confident Bailey Falter will throw long enough to care about splits, but Brandon Nimmo ($3,100) does lead the Mets with a .436 wOBA and 190 wRC+ against lefties. More relevant, he is on a nine-game hitting streak where he's never failed to return 2x. Hitting atop the lineup, I like his chances to get on and score at least once.
Jose Iglesias ($2,300) has some minor appeal for me, assuming this game goes off. We should definitely be targeting Washington starter Aaron Sanchez, who is allowing a .520 wOBA and 1.216 OPS to righties, but CJ Cron's home/road splits are dramatic. Iglesias has been the opposite, oddly better away from Coors. He's riding a seven-game hitting streak. There's zero upside, but at this number he doesn't need much for 2-3x.
Stacks to Consider
This isn't traditional based on likely lineup position, but it offers some positive splits and some discounts to bats we would normally target in this lineup against lefties such as Austin Riley ($3,600) and a struggling Ozzie Albies ($3,300). We assume Acuna is back in the lineup after missing two games with a hamstring issue. He's the clear spark to this offense, has a .455 wOBA against lefties in limited at bats to date, and is 4-of-8 with a 1.761 OPS against Rogers. Swanson is riding a nine-game hitting streak, has a .402 wOBA and is 5-of-9 with a 1.822 OPS against Rogers. Contreras has seemingly found a nightly place in this lineup, either behind the plate or at DH, offers a nice bargain and has a .545 ISO against lefties to date.
While the Braves may be a low-used stack, I'd expect many to be in on the Red Sox. And I'm certainly not fading Rafael Devers ($4,200), but Bradish is allowing a .478 wOBA and 1.127 OPS to righties against .208/.453 to lefties. Story remains on a power binge, while Martinez is hitting a robust .380, with a .438 wOBA and 192 wRC+. Truthfully, Bogaerts doesn't profile terrifically so if we need some saving, dropping to Enrique Hernandez ($2,900) can work.