This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
Get ready for a busy Friday. With two doubleheaders on the docket, 17 total games are scheduled to be played. The playoff picture is starting to round into shape in the NL, but there is still plenty up for grabs in the AL, specifically both Wild Card spots. That race will take center stage when the Yankees and Red Sox begin what could be a key series. The Blue Jays will also be looking to improve their chances with Jose Berrios on the mound against his former team in the Twins. Let's dive into the matchups and highlight some players to consider on DraftKings.
Berrios ($9,500) appears to be clear of any injury issues after he left early two starts ago against the Rays. He didn't miss any time and logged 6.2 innings in his last outing, which happened to also come against the Twins. In that contest, he allowed three runs while recording six strikeouts. That marked the fifth straight start in which he's given up three or fewer runs. That makes him one of the safer options for this slate.
It's generally not a bad idea to roll with whichever pitcher is facing the Pirates on any given night considering they have the second-lowest OPS in baseball. That will be Kyle Gibson ($7,900) on Friday, who will face them in Philadelphia. The only other time he faced them this season, Gibson allowed two runs and recorded five strikeouts across 6.2 innings.
If you're looking to load up on hitters with expensive salaries, then it might not be a bad idea to take a chance on Carlos Hernandez ($5,500) in tournament play. Before being crushed for seven runs in his last outing, he had allowed two runs or fewer in seven of his previous eight starts. He'll try to bounce back in a matchup against a Tigers team that ranks inside the bottom-10 in baseball in OPS.
Adalberto Mondesi ($5,900) has put forth a season many people would have expected from him. Injuries have limited him to only 26 games, but he still has six home runs and 13 steals. A major downside with him, though, is that he only has a 3.0 percent walk rate to go along with a bloated 35.0 percent strikeout rate. Still, he's a dangerous hitter, so he might be worth taking a chance on in a matchup against Casey Mize ($6,100). It could help his cause that Mize only has a 19.0 percent strikeout rate.
Edward Cabrera ($6,200) has made five starts for the Marlins this season and has allowed at least one home run in four of them. Over 55.1 combined innings at Double-A and Triple-A, he was taken deep seven times, so he's not exactly a stranger to this problem. A tough matchup could be in store for him against Brandon Lowe ($5,200), who has hit 34 home runs on his way to a .254 ISO.
Facing Alex Wood ($8,400) is no easy feat given his 3.65 FIP. However, C.J. Cron ($3,400) is awfully appealing at this salary for two reasons. First, he has a 146 wRC+ against left-handed pitchers this season. Second, he has a 161 wRC+ at Coors Field.
Not much has gone right for Alexander Wells ($5,100), who has a 1.83 WHIP and has allowed eight home runs over 31.2 innings. Playing within his hitter-friendly home park against the Rangers, the powerful DJ Peters ($2,700) could be worth considering. Across just 64 games, he's hit 12 home runs.
Stacks to Consider
Lambert hasn't appeared in a Major League game since 2019 because of Tommy John surgery. After logging 16 innings in the minors, the Rockies have deemed him ready to start this matchup. Given that he didn't pitch deep into any of his rehab games, don't expect him to last long in this contest. That could mean a high-scoring performance for the Giants at Coors Field. Their lineup has received several surprising performances this season, including Belt posting what would be a career high .304 ISO.
Serving as a starter down the stretch, Castellanos hasn't exactly taken to the role. Across his last four outings, he's allowed 12 runs and has a 1.40 WHIP over 19.1 innings. Two of those games came against the Mariners, who have the fourth-worst OPS in baseball. This is a very different matchup against the Dodgers, who have the ninth-highest mark in that category. Among the more appealing players on the Dodgers to target is Muncy, who brings plenty of power to the plate with his .286 ISO.
While Howard is scheduled to start, this is basically a bullpen game for the Rangers, considering Howard hasn't thrown more than 3.2 innings in an outing since joining the team. Over those six appearances, he has a 9.22 ERA and a 1.76 WHIP. The Orioles are a dangerous team at home, leaving them with the potential to score in bunches in this game. At the center of it all could be Mullins, who has had a breakout campaign with his 141 wRC+.