Major League Baseball continues down the stretch of the abbreviated yet still compelling 2020 season on Wednesday with 10 games on the DraftKings main slate. Seven of the 10 games on tap are divisional contests while the other three are interleague matchups. Coors Field is absent from the main slate due to it being an afternoon contest, but there are still plenty of hitters set up for success along with some strong pitching plays.
As you put together your DraftKings team, there are some key matchups to focus on. Based on form, matchup and expected opportunity, I’ve selected my favorite value plays and studs at each position in this post. Especially at this point in the season, make sure to stay locked in to @DKLive on Twitter throughout the day and check the latest news in the DK Live app for any breaking news that should impact your roster.
Max Scherzer, WAS at PHI, $10,400 — Scherzer is the most expensive starting pitcher on the slate for good reason given his crazy 55 strikeouts in just 37 1/3 innings so far this season. He had 11 K’s in his most recent outing in Boston and posted 33.9 DKFP, continuing his trend of pitching very well on the road this year. He has over 24 DKFP in three of his past four starts and will be facing the Phillies for the first time this season. Last year, he went 2-1 with a 2.50 ERA in three starts against his division foe with 29 strikeouts in 18 innings. His strikeout potential gives him the edge over the other top options due to his incredibly high ceiling.
Other Options — Dinelson Lamet ($9,900), Zac Gallen ($9,400)
Triston McKenzie, CLE at KC, $6,700 — If you pay up for Scherzer and want to balance him out with a more affordable second SP, McKenzie deserves a look after two strong starts for Cleveland. The rookie righty impressed with 10 strikeouts in his MLB debut, getting 33.7 DKFP and the win with six strong innings. He struggled a little bit against the Cardinals in his second start and only managed 7.4 DKFP, but he’ll be back to facing lighter-hitting competition in this matchup against the Royals. Kansas City doesn’t average a ton of strikeouts per game but is averaging the third-fewest runs per contest in the majors, making this a safe situation to take a shot on a cheap SP with upside.
Other Options — Kyle Hendricks ($8,700), José Berrios ($7,900)
Curious about when major leagues and events will return? Check out our DraftKings Sports Calendar for the latest updates.
James McCann, CWS at MIN, $4,200 — The White Sox and Twins are battling with Cleveland for the top spot in the AL Central in what will be a great race to watch coming down the stretch. Chicago and Minnesota have split their first two games in this series at Target Field and play another good one tonight. McCann didn’t play Tuesday but went 2-for-4 on Monday with a double and 14 DKFP. He has at least nine DKFP in three straight and four of his past five games. McCann also has a strong track record against Berrios, going 8-for-24 with four home runs and 10 RBI in their previous meetings. I think Chicago will get McCann in their lineup either at DH or by making room for him behind the play with Yasmani Grandal ($4,700) resting or moving to DH.
Other Options — Travis d’Arnaud ($4,600), Kurt Suzuki ($3,900)
Jason Castro, SD at LAA, $3,300 — Castro was traded from the Angels to San Diego on Sunday and could be set to make his Padres debut on Wednesday against his former team. He hit just .192 in his 18 games with Los Angeles, going 10-for-52 with four doubles, two home runs and a .707 OPS. He will get a very good matchup if he does get into the lineup against his former teammate Julio Teheran ($7,400). Teheran has gotten smashed in his two home starts this season, going 0-1 with a 15.19 ERA, nine runs allowed and four long balls surrendered in his 5 1⁄3 innings. It’s a very small sample size, but he has also been crushed by left-handed hitters, allowing them to go 11-for-31 (.355) with four home runs and a 1.244 OPS. Stack on those sweet-swinging bats from San Diego in this one, especially those that hit from the left side like Castro.
Other Options — José Trevino ($2,900), Alex Avila ($2,800)
Luke Voit, NYY vs. TB, $4,100 — The Yankees’ lineup has been depleted by injuries, but Voit continues to be a solid play who usually hits near the top of the order and produces some fantasy goodness. He has at least eight DKFP in four of his past five and seven of his past 10, including six games with at least 14 DKFP over that stretch. He has raised his season average to 10.5 DKFP per contest and is hitting .308 with 13 home runs and a 1.068 OPS. Voit and the Bronx Bombers will face Charlie Morton ($8,500) in their series finale with the Rays, but Morton will likely be less than his best since he hasn’t pitched since Aug. 9 due to shoulder inflammation.
Other Options — José Abreu ($5,200), Eric Hosmer ($4,200)
Jeimer Candelario, DET at MIL, $3,800 — The Tigers have relied heavily on Candelario after injuries depleted their lineup, and the 26-year-old switch hitter has stepped up and taken over as the everyday 1B. Over his past 10 games, he has gone 13-for-37 (.351) with two doubles, two home runs, nine RBI and 9.5 DKFP per contest. He is hitting .297 now on the season with a robust .858 OPS. He and the Tigers should be a good source of value in Milwaukee against Adrian Houser ($8,500), who has allowed at least three runs in each of his past four starts and has given up five home runs in 21 innings over that span.
Other Options — Mitch Moreland ($4,000), Bobby Dalbec ($2,500)
Jonathan Schoop, DET at MIL, $4,200 — Schoop has also helped the Tigers’ lineup stay productive and has been one of the team’s best hitters after joining them as a free agent on a one-year deal. Schoop went 2-for-3 on Tuesday on his way to 14 DKFP and has hit safely in each of his past six games with multiple at-bats. He has averaged 12.4 DKFP over his past nine games, going 15-for-33 (.455) with a double, three home runs and 10 RBI.
Other Options — Keston Hiura ($5,200), DJ LeMahieu ($4,500)
Jake Cronenworth, SD at LAA, $3,800 — Even with an influx of bats at the trade deadline, expect the Padres to continue to find ways to get Cronenworth in the lineup since the rookie has put together a great season. He took off while filling in for Hosmer but has remained a regular in the lineup at 2B and is a strong contender for NL Rookie of the Year. He is hitting .356 overall and .417 (15-for-36) over his past 10 games. He is averaging 12 DKFP per contest over those 10 games and posted double-digit DKFP in each of his past three contests. He’s another lefty bat to target against Teheran.
Other Options — César Hernández ($3,900), Luis García ($3,400)
Manny Machado, SD at LAA, $4,700 — Even though he’s not a left-handed hitter, Machado is still a great consideration against Teheran and the Angels. He did lose his 10-game hitting streak on Monday but will look to get back to mashing after an off-day Tuesday. He had gone 11-for-17 in his four games before Monday’s 0-for-3 and is still hitting .475 (19-for-40) over his past 10 contests with five home runs, 13 RBI and even a stolen base for an average of 15.6 DKFP per contest. He has been red-hot and will look to get back to filling up the hit column on Wednesday.
Other Options — Max Muncy ($5,400), Kris Bryant ($4,400)
Austin Riley, ATL at BOS, $3,600 — With the current state of the Red Sox pitching staff, whoever is playing against them is also an option to stack. Atlanta gets to take on Mike Kickham ($4,000) on Wednesday night. Kickham is a 31-year-old lefty who posted a 4.27 ERA in 31 games at Triple-A last season and 10.98 ERA in just over 30 innings in the Majors in his career. Riley has found a nice groove lately, going 15-for-39 (.385) with three homers and a 1.158 OPS over his past 10 games, establishing himself as the everyday option for Atlanta at the hot corner.
Other Option — Willi Castro ($3,200), Ke’Bryan Hayes ($2,000)
Francisco Lindor, CLE at KC, $5,000 — SS is absolutely loaded on this slate with six options checking in with salaries of at least $5K. While several of the stars make plays worth paying for, don’t overlook Lindor just because he plays for Cleveland and hasn’t been in the national spotlight. Lindor picked up two more hits Tuesday and has gone 15-for-41 over his past 10 games with two homers, two stolen bases and a .994 OPS for an average of 10.1 DKFP per contest. He has an amazing history against opposing SP Jakob Junis ($7,200), who he has gone 16-for-32 against in his career with three doubles, four home runs and a 1.531 OPS.
Other Options — Trea Turner ($5,500), Fernando Tatis Jr. ($5,200)
Chris Taylor, LAD vs. ARI, $4,100 — As the Dodgers deal with multiple injuries, Taylor will likely get more opportunities to get into the lineup, especially if he contributes like he did on Tuesday, going 2-for-4 with two doubles, four RBI and 22 DKFP. Taylor has been a streaky performer throughout his career but could be in line for a good spot in one of the best lineups in baseball. He offers a little speed and a little power but gets most of his value from his counting stats. It’s probably best to pay up at SS, but if you can’t Taylor’s a solid fallback option as long as he gets another start on Wednesday.
Other Options — Willy Adames ($3,900), Yairo Muñoz ($2,400)
Juan Soto, WAS at PHI, $5,700 — Soto continues to be one of the top OF bats to consider every time he’s on the slate. He has an impressive 1.219 OPS in his 25 games this season with 11 home runs, six doubles, a stolen base and 25 RBI. He has produced 12.6 DKFP per contest this season, and remember this lefty is only 21 years old. He has homered in his career off of Zack Wheeler ($9,500) even though he has only gone 4-for-18. He has favorable splits against righties and on the road, but the way Soto is crushing it, the opponent and location almost don’t seem to matter very much.
Other Options — Nelson Cruz ($6,100), Luis Robert ($4,400), Marcell Ozuna ($4,300)
Andrew McCutchen, PHI vs. WAS, $3,900 — Even a matchup with the mighty Max Scherzer ($10,400) may not be enough to cool down McCutchen, who has turned back the clock with a sizzling two-week span. Cutch had his fifth home run of the season on Tuesday and posted 20 DKFP. He has hit four of those five home runs in his past nine games while also picking up three of his four stolen bases on the season and producing an eye-popping 14.2 DKFP per contest. He is 5-for-28 (.179) with a home run off of Scherzer in their past meetings, but he’s so hot right now that you can still slot him into your lineup at this price and hope he keeps producing.
Josh Naylor, CLE at KC, $2,000 — Naylor couldn’t carve out regular playing time in a crowded Padres OF, but he is expected to be locked in as Cleveland’s primary LF after being traded in the Mike Clevinger deal. Naylor went 2-for-5 with an RBI and 12 DKFP in his first start for Cleveland on Tuesday. He hasn’t shown it yet in the Majors, but he has shown the potential to hit for power and average throughout his climb through the minors, including hitting .314 with 10 homers and a .936 OPS in 54 games at Triple-A last year.
Other Options — Trent Grisham ($4,000), Randy Arozarena ($2,800)
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 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). Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 (NH/CO) or 1-800-BETS OFF (IA). 21+ (18+ NH). NJ/PA/WV/IN/NH/IA/CO/IL only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.