After a quieter afternoon slate, Major League Baseball has plenty of action scheduled under the lights Saturday night, providing 11 games for the main slate on DraftKings, which is scheduled to get underway at 7:05 p.m. ET. Only one of the games is a divisional matchup, featuring the Cubs and Brewers. Nine of the 11 games get underway shortly after contests lock, with only two later games from the West — the Yankees visit the Athletics and the Guardians take on the Mariners.
To keep up with pregame lineups and the latest player news, install the DK Live app and follow DK Live on Twitter (@dklive). I’m also on Twitter (@ZT_Sports), where you can keep up with all my picks as the season continues.
Luis Castillo, Seattle Mariners vs. Cleveland Guardians ($10,100) – Castillo has been a great pickup for the Mariners, going 1-1 with a 3.16 ERA, 2.93 FIP and 29 strikeouts in 25 2/3 innings across four starts. He is coming off a down outing vs. the Athletics. Prior to that, he had posted over 21 DKFP in eight straight starts dating back to his time in Cincinnati. The Guardians are a fairly neutral matchup overall, ranking in the middle of most offensive categories. In the pitcher-friendly environment of T-Mobile Park, Castillo should be set up for another strong outing in a favorable head-to-head matchup with Zach Plesac ($7,600).
Other Options – Yu Darvish ($10,400), Charlie Morton ($9,300)
Drew Smyly, Chicago Cubs at Milwaukee Brewers ($7,900) – Smyly has been locked in over four starts this month, giving up just three runs over 24 innings for a 1.13 ERA and 2.63 FIP to go with 23 strikeouts in 24 innings. He has produced over 22 DKFP in three of those four outings and has allowed five hits or fewer in each contest. In his most recent start, he held the Cardinals to just one run and had 22.1 DKFP in a tough-luck loss, but he will hope for more run support in this contest. He will be facing a Brewers lineup that has struggled against lefties all season, posting only a .214 batting average vs. LHP — the second-worst mark in the Majors.
Other Options – Jordan Montgomery ($8,800), Dean Kremer ($6,800)
Alex Bregman, Houston Astros vs. Baltimore Orioles ($5,000) – In August, Bregman has been raking, going 32-for-83 (.386) with nine doubles, six home runs, a .488 wOBA and 229 wRC+. Bregman has been much better at home — hitting .327 with a .429 wOBA — than on the road (.219 with a .313 wOBA). He has also been much better against righties, so all the splits point to him staying hot in this Saturday night matchup with Dean Kremer ($6,800).
Christian Walker, Arizona Diamondbacks at Chicago White Sox ($4,500) – Walker has a four-game hitting streak coming into this matchup and has at least one hit in 16 of his past 19 contests. During that span, he is hitting .377 (26-for-69) with five doubles, five home runs, 15 runs scored and 14 RBIs, to go with a .464 wOBA and 200 wRC+. Walker and the D-backs will face rookie righty Davis Martin ($5,700) on Saturday, which is a strong spot to consider Walker at only $4.5K.
Other Options – Marcus Semien ($5,300), Ha-Seong Kim ($4,300)
Luis García, Washington Nationals vs. Cincinnati Reds ($3,700) – Shortstop is a shallow position on this slate, but García has been one of the few Nats putting up good numbers since the trade deadline sell-off. The 22-year-old middle infielder has typically been hitting in the first or second spot in the lineup and has gone 13-for-40 (.325) with one home run over his 11 games in August. He missed a couple of weeks with a groin strain but stole a base in his return on Friday. He should be the Nats’ everyday 2B the rest of the season, and Washington has a nice home matchup on Saturday against Luis Cessa ($5,000) and the Reds.
Vaughn Grissom, Atlanta Braves at St. Louis Cardinals ($2,700) – Grissom is only 21 but hasn’t had much trouble adjusting to the Majors after making the leap from Double-A earlier this month. In his 16 games, he has gone 22-for-60 (.367) with three homers, two stolen bases, a .421 wOBA and 170 wRC+. Even in a matchup against Jordan Montgomery ($8,800), who has been pitching well, getting Grissom under $3K is definitely an option to consider since he brings so much upside and can produce in a variety of ways.
Other Options – Eric Haase ($3,400), Emmanuel Rivera ($2,600)
Aaron Judge, New York Yankees at Oakland Athletics ($6,300) – After a nine-game home run draught, Judge is back in the groove with three homers in his past four games. He went 6-for-14 (.429) with an impressive .643 wOBA in those four games. He has been better at home than on the road, but even in Oakland, he deserves a look if you’re paying up at OF since he’s heating back up and has a favorable matchup highlighted below in stacks.
Starling Marte, New York Mets vs. Colorado Rockies ($5,600) – For the other team in the Big Apple, Marte has been on a roll over the past couple of weeks, going 14-for-42 (.333) with three doubles, a triple, two homers, a .428 wOBA and an average of 12 DKFP per game over his past 10. Marte is up to 14 homers and 18 stolen bases on the season and has been a key catalyst near the top of the Mets’ order. He takes on lefty Kyle Freeland ($6,600) and the Rockies on Saturday night, and Marte is hitting .298 with a .368 wOBA and 143 wRC+ against southpaws this season.
Other Options – Adolis García ($4,900), Kyle Tucker ($4,600)
Mitch Haniger, Seattle Mariners vs. Cleveland Guardians ($4,100) – While Julio Rodríguez ($6,200) got the well-deserved attention for his massive new contract, it was Haniger that provided the Mariners the win on Friday night with a late-night walk-off win in the 11th inning vs. Cleveland. Haniger also homered in the series opener, driving in all three runs in that victory. Since returning from the IL, Haniger has hit safely in 16 of 18 games, going 17-for-72 (.319) with four homers and a .384 wOBA. Getting a middle-of-the-order bat at barely over $4K makes a lot of sense, especially since Seattle should score runs against Plesac, who has gone 0-5 while allowing 26 runs over 34 2/3 innings in his past seven starts, leading to a 5.97 ERA and 4.40 FIP during that span.
Lars Nootbaar, St. Louis Cardinals vs. Atlanta Braves ($3,000) – Nootbaar has moved into the leadoff spot on a regular basis for the Cardinals and has produced multiple hits in five of his past 10 games, going 13-for-35 (.371) with three doubles, a triple and three homers, a .525 wOBA and 247 wRC+. Over those 10 games, the 24-year-old lefty has averaged 12.5 DKFP per contest. He and the Cards are in a tougher matchup against Charlie Morton ($9,300), but he’s still too cheap to overlook at only $3K given he’s on such a tear and in a premium lineup spot.
Other Options – Andrew McCutchen ($3,700), Jake Fraley ($2,700), Victor Reyes ($2,000)
TEAMS TO STACK
New York Yankees at Oakland Athletics – It’s probably too early to say the Yankees are “back” after their midseason swoon, but they have won five in a row to turn things around. They will look to take a third straight in Oakland when they take on Adam Oller ($5,900). Oller is 1-4 with a 7.71 ERA in his six home games and has given up seven homers and a .408 wOBA in those outings. Andrew Benintendi ($3,800) seems to be the Yankees’ answer at the leadoff spot. Judge (discussed above) and Anthony Rizzo ($5,000) have been rejoined in the heart of the lineup by Giancarlo Stanton ($5,200). Josh Donaldson ($4,000) and Isiah Kiner-Falefa ($2,900) can also help fill out the stack at lower price points, and Gleyber Torres ($3,900) also seems to have shaken off his slump.
Detroit Tigers at Texas Rangers – The Rangers have been forced to place a couple of key starting pitchers on the IL this past week, leaving them with Dallas Keuchel ($5,700) on the mount Saturday. Keuchel was released by the Diamondbacks and White Sox earlier this season after going a combined 2-7 with an 8.53 ERA, 5.79 FIP and 2.03 WHIP. Keuchel has given up 10 homers in 12 starts, all to right-handed hitters, who are hitting .341 against him. Javier Baez ($3,900) and Eric Haase ($3,400) are a pair of middle-of-the-order bats with power potential under $4K. Haase is 6-for-13 with a home run in the past against Kuechel, making him a good play at a tricky catcher spot. Miguel Cabrera ($2,000), Victor Reyes ($2,000) and Willi Castro ($2,000) will also be on the right side of the split and available at the minimum salary. You can add leadoff lefty Riley Greene ($3,500) and still have a very affordable alternate stack against the struggling veteran in his Rangers debut.
Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.
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 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.
If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, crisis counseling and referral services can be accessed by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) (IL/IN/MI/NJ/PA/WV/WY), 1-800-NEXT STEP (AZ), 1-800-522-4700 (CO/NH), 888-789-7777/visit ccpg.org/chat (CT), 1-800-BETS OFF (IA), 1-877-770-STOP (7867) (LA), 877-8-HOPENY/text HOPENY (467369) (NY), visit OPGR.org (OR), call/text TN REDLINE 1-800-889-9789 (TN), ConnexOntario 1-866-531-2600 (ONT), or 1-888-532-3500 (VA).
21+ (18+ NH/WY; 19+ ONT). Physically present in AZ/CO/CT/IL/IN/IA/LA/MI/NH/NJ/NY/ONT/OR/PA/TN/VA/WV/WY only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions. DraftKings operates pursuant to an Operating Agreement with iGaming Ontario. Please play responsibly.