Wednesday’s split MLB schedule has eight games on tap for the main contest in the evening after several getaway games earlier in the day. Only one of the eight night games is a divisional contest, the Pirates hosting the Cardinals, which is one of the multiple early games before things culminate with the second and final game of the brief Freeway Series between the Angels and the Dodgers at Chavez Ravine.
The 16 teams scheduled to be in action represent just over half of Major Leaguers, so there are lots of different ways to build your lineup. If you find yourself stretched for salary, take a look at these five players, who are set up for success at very affordable salaries.
SP REYNALDO LÓPEZ, CWS vs. MIA, $7,000
López has a great matchup against the Marlins and has looked sharp in his two starts coming out of the All-Star break. Both those outings came on the road as he went 1-0 against the Athletics and Rays, allowing just two earned runs on nine hits over 13 innings while striking out 15. He had 24.5 DKFP in his no-decision in Oakland and followed that with 27.6 DKFP against Tampa Bay.
It hasn’t been a great season for López, who enters this start with a 5.76 ERA and 5-8 record, but he was once regarded as a quality prospect. He has flashed upside but struggled with consistency during his four seasons in the Majors. He should be in a place to deliver another strong outing, though, as he faces the Marlins, who have continued to struggle offensively all season and have hit just .175 while scoring 19 runs in seven games over the past week.
SP BRAD KELLER, KC at ATL, $6,600
Keller has also looked sharp in his recent outings despite a 4.18 ERA and 6-9 record on the season. In his three starts this month, Keller has gone 2-0 and allowed just four earned runs in 20 total innings for a 1.80 ERA. He doesn’t always provide big-time strikeout upside but has picked up seven punchouts in each of his two most recent starts, buoying his totals to 31.6 and 21.7 DKFP.
Keller and the Royals are wrapping up their two-game stop in Atlanta for an interleague series, so his outing could be shorter since he will need to be in the lineup. However, he has been pitching well enough to still be worth a look at his salary under $7K since even a solid shorter outing should offer good returns.
3B VLADIMIR GUERRERO JR., TOR vs. CLE, $3,300
Guerrero hasn’t exactly taken the Majors by storm as some predicted but he offers some great power potential at a great salary on this slate. He has collected multiple hits in four of his past five games after going 2-for-3 Tuesday night with a double and a walk. He has gone 9-for-25 (.360) over the past week with a double, home run and .949 OPS.
Maybe it took him longer than expected, but he seems to be settling into facing Major League pitching. He’ll take on Shane Bieber ($10,500) of the Tribe in this matchup, and has a high ceiling at home at Rogers Centre even though Bieber has been effective this season on the road.
OF JON JAY, CWS vs. MIA, $3,300
Jay joined the White Sox as a veteran outfield option this offseason but was sidelined by a right hip strain until June 24, when he made his season debut. Since then, he has become a regular part of the top of the Chicago lineup and been a solid source of batting average and runs scored. In his 21 games, he has 25 hits and has scored 10 runs while hitting .321 with six doubles and a .754 OPS.
Since the All-Star break, Jay has gone 15-for-43 (.349) with four doubles. He moved into the second spot in the batting order Tuesday after hitting fifth or sixth for most of the season. The second spot should boost his run production potential if he bats there against Zac Gallen ($7,800) and the Marlins on Wednesday.
2B LUIS URIAS, SD at NYM, $2,700
If you need an ultra-cheap play under $3K, check out Urias, who is packed with potential but hasn’t quite put it together yet during his brief time in the Majors. The 21-year-old was ranked the No. 22 prospect in all of baseball by MLB Pipeline before he was recalled and was hitting .315 with 19 home runs and a .998 OPS for the El Paso Chihuahuas in Triple-A.
Since being called up, he has started three games and gone just 1-for-9. However, he has drawn three walks and scored three runs. Urias is viewed as the double-play partner of the future for fellow-rookie Fernando Tatis Jr. ($5,000), so San Diego is likely ready to give him a long look. He should start hitting as he adjusts to Major League pitching and is a great pickup at such an affordable salary even against Noah Syndergaard ($10,000). Urias is much more than a punt play given the success he has had in the minors and the long-term upside.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Z.Thompson) 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.