Here are my favorite DraftKings plays for Friday’s 13-game MLB main slate.
For additional picks across all MLB games, find me on Twitter @Nick_Friar.
Tyler Mahle, Minnesota Twins at Los Angeles Angels ($8,500) – Although Max Scherzer ($10,900) and Carlos Rodon ($10,600) carry more favorable floors, Mahle is in spot for a ceiling game Friday. The right-hander will face an Angels lineup that is dead-last in line-drive rate against right-handed pitching since mid-July. Not only do they have a 43.5% ground-ball rate during that stretch, but they’ve also posted a 24.8% strikeout rate. As much as Mahle’s strikeout rate is down from years past, we’ve still seen him go off in 2022 when presented with the right opportunity.
Other Options - Carlos Rodon ($10,600)
Mike Clevinger, San Diego Padres at Washington Nationals ($7,800) – Everyone is picking on the Nationals right now, and it’s Clevinger’s turn. This lineup still isn’t striking out a ton against righties in the wake of losing its two best hitters, but Washington still presents San Diego’s Friday starter with the chance to bounce back because they’re pounding the ball into the ground so much. Speaking of bounce-back performances, Clevinger has followed up his last two single-digit-DKFP showings with 25-plus-DKFP outings. Given how depleted the Nats are, he’s in a spot to do that again after having only registered 1.1 DKFP vs. the Dodgers last time out.
Corey Seager, Texas Rangers at Seattle Mariners ($4,900) – George Kirby ($9,200) has kept Seager at bay in their previous meeting, but that changes Friday. The Texas shortstop is coming off a strong series in Houston, and now he gets to play in the park where he does his best work. Seager has .221 ISO on nine home runs and five doubles against right-handed pitching at Choctaw Stadium this season. Zoom in on his last 60 plate appearances against righties in Arlington, that ISO balloons up to .306 thanks to a 25.6% line-drive rate and 37.2% hard-contact rate.
Jose Abreu, Chicago White Sox vs. Detroit Tigers ($4,900) – Chicago’s first baseman has had some of his biggest games of 2022 vs. Tigers, producing 28- and 37-DKFP performances against them back in June. Although he will probably only get one look at Daniel Norris ($5,000), that should be more than enough. He’s a whopping 10-for-22 with four doubles and two home runs against the Detroit left-hander.
Other Options - Ketel Marte ($4,900)
Aledmys Diaz, Houston Astros vs. Oakland Athletics ($3,500) – This is not a good spot for Adam Oller ($5,400). Diaz has socked a double off the Oakland right-hander before, and he’s likely to do even more damage on Friday. Since mid-July, Diaz has a .256 ISO against right-handed pitching, thanks largely to his 40% fly-ball rate and 35% hard-contact rate during that span. In his last four starts, Oller has given up a 65.3% fly-ball rate and 40.8% hard-contact rate to righty bats.
Rougned Odor, Baltimore Orioles vs. Tampa Bay Rays ($2,000) – Second base has some strong high-priced options available Friday, but Odor gives you a chance at a strong return while providing the ability to spend elsewhere. He’s got a solid .186 ISO against right-handed pitching his season, but the big kicker is his career line against Corey Kluber ($8,900). Baltimore’s second baseman is 8-for-20 with three home runs and two doubles against Tampa’s Friday night starter.
Other Options - Jeremy Pena ($3,900), Brandon Belt ($3,200)
Yordan Alvarez, Houston Astros vs. Oakland Athletics ($5,800) – Although Oller hasn’t given up an overwhelming amount of hard contact to lefty bats since mid-July, he’s allowed a ton of fly balls (59.1%). That’s all Alvarez needs in order to go off. Houston’s big bat broke out of his mini slump on Wednesday, which means it’s time for a new hot streak to begin. Facing a right-handed, fly-ball pitcher like Oller puts him in a spot to build off his solo shot vs. Texas, especially since he took the day off on Thursday, too.
Mookie Betts, Los Angeles Dodgers at Kansas City Royals ($5,000) – Betts is one of the most potent hitters against left-handed pitching. Daniel Lynch ($6,500) has done a better job of generating grounders from righties of late, but that’s largely been an issue for him this season. Additionally, the last 79 righties to face the KC right-hander have produced a 45.6% hard-contact rate. Factor in the fact Betts is also in good form, having his five doubles and two home runs while hitting .333 across his last 10 games, and he makes for a reliable stick to start the weekend.
LaMonte Wade Jr., San Francisco Giants vs. Pittsburgh Pirates ($2,600) – Simply put, Wade provides serious power potential against right-handed pitching. His season-long ISO against righties is .250, and he’s posted an absurd .500 ISO against them since mid-July. He’ll come back down to Earth at some point, but not against Bryse Wilson ($5,900). The Pittsburgh right-hander has been abysmal against lefties this season, and in his last six starts, lefty bats have posted a 57.8% hard-contact rate and 24.4% line-drive rate against him.
Joc Pederson, San Francisco Giants vs. Pittsburgh Pirates ($4,300) – Pederson has done next to nothing against righties since mid-July. However, that may be more the result of bad luck than anything else. Since July 15, he has a .261 BABIP and .071 ISO against right-handed pitching despite posting a 50% fly-ball rate, 27.3% line-drive rate and 34.8% hard-contact rate. Having just run through Wilson’s numbers against lefties, it’s easy to see how this is a chance for Pederson to bust out.
TEAM TO STACK
Houston Astros vs. Oakland Athletics – As mentioned when discussing Diaz and Alvarez, Oller is an easy pitcher to target Friday. Righties do seem like the better way to go in this matchup, given the type of contact he’s been surrendering to them of late. Jose Altuve ($5,500) is absolutely one of the high-priced second basemen who’s worth getting exposure to this slate. His double-play partner, Jeremy Pena ($3,900), is a great way to target Oller while saving some cash, too. Trey Mancini ($4,000) makes for an interesting option because of his outfielder eligibility.
And with all the love being given to Houston righty bats, Kyle Tucker ($4,400) is very appealing at his current price. The lefty has a .306 ISO against right-handed pitching since mid-July, which is the result of a 45.2% fly-ball rate and 35.5% hard contact rate.
Other Option - San Francisco Giants vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is dk-nfriar) 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 do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. 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.
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