There are four games on the early slate for Thursday, with the first game beginning at 12:20 p.m. ET between the Washington Nationals and Atlanta Braves. We are going to go over some top options on DraftKings and give out a few value picks to help you build your lineup.
Gerrit Cole, Yankees vs. Rays ($11,200) — It is hard to not play Cole in DFS on a regular basis, despite him having a relatively high salary cap value. The flame-throwing ace of the Yankees’ starting rotation is one of the best pitchers in baseball and is having another solid year on the mound (6-2, 1.78 ERA, 28.5 FPPG). He’ll be facing the Rays for the third time this season. In his last start against Tampa Bay on May 12, Cole produced a season-high 43.6 fantasy points (8 IP, 4 hits, 12 strikeouts).
Martin Perez, Red Sox vs. Astros ($7,600) — Outside of Cole, there isn’t another top pitcher in today’s early slate that warrants as a must-start. However, Perez is the next best option. He will try to help the Red Sox avoid a four-game sweep to the Astros. After a rough April, Perez has been consistently scoring in double digits in MLB DFS. In his last six outings, the southpaw is averaging 18.73 fantasy points per game.
Ronald Acuna Jr., Braves vs. Nationals ($5,700) — Acuna has been one of the best players in baseball after a slow start to the season and should be a frontrunner for the NL MVP. This season, he is hitting .287 with an impressive 17 HRs, 35 RBI, and averaging 11.3 fantasy points per game. In this four-game series against the Nats, Acuna has hit 2 HRs and drove in 3 runs, while also scoring 21 fantasy points per game.
Trea Turner, Nationals vs. Braves ($5,400) — The Nationals veteran shortstop has been a problem at the plate and on the base paths for opponents this season. Turner is hitting .313 with 10 HRs, 28 RBI, and averaging 9.5 fantasy points per game. In his last two games, he has scored 15 and 13 points, respectively, against the Braves.
Austin Gomber, Rockies vs. Rangers ($5,400) — Gomber might be your best value pitcher option in a rather less than stellar slate of pitching options. The southpaw is facing a Texas team that is horrible on the road with a record of 9-22.
Despite a 3-5 record and 4.55 ERA, Gomber is holding opponents to a .149 batting average at Coors Field this season. He’s worth the gamble, which should free up some more salary cap.
Alex Verdugo, Red Sox vs. Astros ($3,300) — The former Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder is criminally underrated and undervalued in DFS this season. Verdugo is hitting .286 with 7 HRs, 24 RBI, and averaging 7.8 fantasy points per game. In a Red Sox’s lineup that has the likes of J.D. Martinez, Xander Bogaerts, and Rafael Devers, he’s one of the better value plays that can get on base.