Friday’s slate has 14 games, featuring some high-powered offenses in strong spots. Only two of the 28 starting pitchers on the entire slate cost more than $10,000, which is a good indicator that this slate should have a lot of offense. I’m going to include a couple of stacks I really like that also come with some significant weather concerns, so just make sure you monitor those situations. If the games play, they could be a good way to get exposure to games people are afraid to target.
It’s important to note that you should always keep an eye on the news and lineup notes from @DKLive in order to best prepare for each slate. In addition, feel free to get at me on Twitter with any questions — @julianedlow.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Tonight’s game between the Braves and Indians has been postponed.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Tonight’s game between the Twins and Orioles has been postponed.
1. HOUSTON ASTROS
The Astros are projected for a slate-high 5.8 runs against LHP Drew Smyly ($6,300) and the Rangers. Smyly has a 7.15 ERA, and rarely pitches deep into games. He’s allowed four runs in each of his last two starts, but only pitched a total of 8 1/3 innings. While he did limit Houston to just one run in three innings in his first start of the season, I expect this outcome to be much different. Smyly’s not pitching nearly as well as he was in that game, and Houston’s offense has finally come alive.
The Astros got off to a cold start to the season before the bats finally found their stride. They’ve managed to score eight or more runs in three of their last six games, and this matchup in Texas keeps their ceiling high. Houston bats are 18-for-58 (.310) against Smyly and have the RHBs to get to him early in this one.
Players to ConsiderJose Altuve ($5,100)
George Springer ($4,900)
Alex Bregman ($4,600)
Michael Brantley ($4,500)
Carlos Correa ($4,500)
Yuli Gurriel ($4,200)
2. COLORADO ROCKIES
The Rockies are projected for 5.5 runs against the Phillies at Coors Field, where they scored six runs in the series opener. Most of that production was provided by Ryan McMahon ($4,300), who remains affordable and in another opposite-hand matchup against Vince Velasquez ($6,700).
Velasquez made one start at Coors last season, and it went just as you’d imagine — a 14.73 ERA on September 25, which actually makes this outing three starts ago for him. He allowed six runs in 3 2/3 innings, and the Rockies went on to rack up 10 runs.
Players to ConsiderNolan Arenado ($5,400)
Trevor Story ($5,200)
Charlie Blackmon ($5,000)
David Dahl ($4,600)
Ryan McMahon ($4,300)
Ian Desmond ($3,800)
3. ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
The Cardinals play host to LHP Jason Vargas ($5,600) and the Mets. STL’s projected for five runs in this one, and comes into the matchup averaging 5.28 runs per game this season. Vargas has appeared in three games so far this season, giving up 10 runs in just 6 1/3 innings, which translates to a 14.21 ERA.
These STL bats have smashed Vargas in the past, going 22-for-62 (.355) against him. The last time he faced the Cards, he gave up six runs in 4 2/3 innings, taking the loss. The Cardinals have scored six or more runs in five of their last seven games — which I’ve has me eyeballing OVER 4.5 runs for the team total on DK Sportsbook.
Players to ConsiderPaul DeJong ($4,900)
Marcell Ozuna ($4,900)
Paul Goldschmidt ($4,800)
Matt Carpenter ($4,400)
Kolten Wong ($4,400)
Jose Martinez ($3,800)
4. MINNESOTA TWINS
Baltimore’s going to present some weather issues, but the Twins have a solid 5.3-run projection that should fly under the radar on this slate. RHP Alex Cobb ($6,000) is scheduled to make his second start of the season for the Birds, allowing just two solo homers in 5 2/3 innings in his first start against the Yankees — although Baltimore wound up allowing eight runs in a loss.
Cobb had a rough outing against Minnesota last season, giving up five runs in five innings in a game the O’s surrendered 10 runs. Cobb’s missed his last two starts with a back injury, so he may not be as sharp in his return. Cobb not being 100% with a brutal Baltimore bullpen behind him should mean plenty of opportunities on offense for the Twins.
Players to ConsiderEddie Rosario ($4,900)
Nelson Cruz ($4,900)
Jorge Polanco ($4,800)
Max Kepler ($4,500)
C.J. Cron ($4,200)
Marwin Gonzalez ($3,900)
5. NEW YORK YANKEES
Beware of the weather in New York as well, but the Yankees have a 5.2-run projection against the Royals. New York was a huge disappointment on Thursday, scoring just one run against Homer Bailey. RHP Jake Junis ($6,800) will get the start for the Royals on Friday, and he is off to an extremely shaky start this season.
Junis has a 6.14 ERA, and the opposing team has scored at least five runs in all four of his starts (6.25 runs per game). Junis faced the Yankees twice last season, watching nine runs cross home plate during his 10 innings on the mound. While a lot is being made of the Yankees’ injuries, and deservingly so, they still have solid bats in the heart of their order, and are pretty affordable for the name that’s on their jerseys.
Players to ConsiderAaron Judge ($4,900)
Luke Voit ($4,400)
Gleyber Torres ($4,300)
Brett Gardner ($4,300)
Mike Tauchman ($4,000)
DJ LeMahieu ($3,900)
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jedlow) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.