This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
We only have eight games on the slate, but there are a lot of intriguing points to work through. There are several elite pitchers and places to pay down, so I'm mostly staying out of the middle tier. There are also several exciting younger players who appear mispriced, so it's possible to pay down with bats as well.
Gerrit Cole ($10,300) and Shane McClanahan ($10,100) are the top-priced pitchers on the slate and square off against each other. McClanahan has shown the skills edge this season, but the matchup heavily favors Cole. Tampa Bay strikes out at the 10th-highest clip this season and has the fourth-lowest wOBA. For that reason, I'd pay all the way up for Cole if I was building around an elite pitcher.
Corbin Burnes ($9,900) falls just outside the 10K price tag, but he actually owns a better SIERA and strikeout rate than Cole. St. Louis strikes out at the second-lowest rate in the league and is also a tough matchup from a wOBA perspective. For those reasons, I'd reserve Burnes for tournament consideration only.
Yu Darvish ($8,100) is the only player I'd dip into the middle tier for. He's topped 22 DK points in four of his last five starts, yet his price has fallen in that span. Arizona is a strikeout-prone lineup, which means Darvish has another spike performance within reach.
The hate has gone too far on Noah Syndergaard ($6,400). He's largely been able to limit damage this season thanks to his ability to induce groundballs (1.3 GB/FB ratio). Meanwhile, Kansas City has among the worst ISOs in the league. Syndergaard is more of a cash game play, but he should be able to work efficiently with the strong potential for a win against the Royals.
Caleb Kilian ($5,000) is a viable punt play thanks to a matchup against the Pirates.
Mike Trout ($5,600) has hit five home runs in his last five games. That's not a reason to play him, but a matchup against Kris Bubic – who has allowed 1.6 HR/9 – and Trout's .491 wOBA and .333 ISO against southpaws this season certainly are.
Tim Anderson ($5,500) and Luis Robert ($5,300) are both in a good spot Monday. Jose Berrios has shown signs of turning things around but has still given up six home runs across his last five starts. He has also surrendered barrels at an 11.9 percent clip and a 47 percent hard-hit rate – both of which are the highest mark among the player pool.
Lance Lynn isn't typically a pitcher to target, but he looked rusty in his first start of the season at Detroit. Toronto is a major step up in terms of lineup quality, so I'm willing to invest in some of the Jays' higher-priced hitters. Teoscar Hernandez ($4,700) has shown an increase in power production of late, but his price has slightly decreased in recent days.
Oneil Cruz ($2,000) finally got the call to Pittsburgh and will presumably be in the starting lineup Monday. His raw power alone is enough to roster him at min price, regardless of matchup.
Jarren Duran's ($3,400) price has risen since his promotion to Boston last week, but not enough for his role as the team's leadoff hitter.
Riley Greene ($2,100) is the last of the mispriced players that were recently promoted. It's impossible to draw definitive conclusions from a nine plate appearance sample, but Greene hasn't looked overmatched. He's reached base at .667 clip while striking out only once.
Stacks to Consider
Los Angeles Angels vs. Kris Bubic: Taylor Ward ($3,900), Mike Trout ($5,600), Shohei Ohtani ($5,900), Matt Duffy ($2,500)
Bubic is the most obvious option to stack against on the slate. He has only a 4.5 K-BB%, has surrendered 1.6 HR/9 and has a SIERA of 5.23. The Angels will be a chalky option, but they are fairly easy to work into lineups due to the discounted prices of Ward and Duffy – the latter of whom is likely to be in the lineup with a lefty on the mound.
Chicago Cubs vs. JT Brubaker: Christopher Morel ($3,700), Willson Contreras ($4,900), Ian Happ ($3,600), Patrick Wisdom ($3,600)
The Cubs aren't an offensive juggernaut, but there are a number of things worth targeting in Brubaker's profile. He's posted a 9.6 percent walk rate and has surrendered 1.3 HR/9. The Cubs should both be cheap and easy to build around while not being particularly popular. The Pirates aren't a quality lineup, but I like both sides of this game. Building a game stack would allow a lineup centered around two of the top pitchers on the slate.
Boston Red Sox vs. Alex Faedo: Jarren Duran ($3,400), Rafael Devers ($5,700), J.D. Martinez ($5,400), Xander Bogaerts ($5,100)
Boston is a bit of a different option than the first pair for a few reasons. First, they have by far the most name value and expense attached. Duran is really the only option here offering any type of clear value. In addition, Faedo has experienced a fair bit of success (4.28 ERA across 40 innings). However, he allowed the highest rate of flyballs among the pitcher pool and the third-highest SIERA.