This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
We grow ever closer to the end of the regular season, but it's not time to forget about baseball as we get a nice seven-game slate to work with Saturday night. It's a strong pitching slate - literally from the top to the bottom of the player pool. Positive hitting spots are slightly less obvious, but there are still a few games to focus on.
Atlanta has had an interesting lineup to analyze all season because they have a lot of pop and quality bats throughout. On the other hand, they've struck out at a 24.5 percent clip, the third-highest rate in the league. Max Scherzer ($11,000) is also arguably matchup-proof, so he's appropriately the highest-valued option available.
We can drop down a tier to Cristian Javier ($9,400). He boasts the highest strikeout rate among the pitcher pool this season and is within five-tenths of a percentage point of Scherzer within the last 30 days. The Rays aren't a troublesome opponent, so there's no reason to shy away. Kyle Wright ($8,700) represents a decent option in the same tier. He lacks about eight percentage points off of Javier's strikeout rate and faces a much tougher matchup in the Mets, so the former is the superior option on paper. However, Wright is a quality pitcher and that still makes him worth mentioning.
Jordan Montgomery ($7,600) has encountered a couple of stumbles in recent starts, but he's still reached 20 DK points twice in his last five outings and 18 DK on one other occasion. He goes up against the Pirates, one of the best matchups in the league.
Michael Grove ($5,300) is the ideal punt play drawing the Rockies away from Coors Field. He's also worked five innings in each of his last three starts and has accrued a 14:3 K:BB during that span.
Only Aaron Judge and Nathaniel Lowe have produced a higher wOBA than Eloy Jimenez ($4,700) in the second half of the season. He'll be facing Mike Clevinger, who has allowed 2.7 HR/9 and has a 5.23 SIERA over his last five starts.
Taylor Ward ($4,200) started the year hot, but has largely disappeared since. However, he's picked up his performance once again and occupies a spot immediately following Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout in the lineup. A matchup against Cole Ragans also helps with his 5.04 SIERA, highest mark on the slate.
Edward Cabrera offers electric stuff, but he's displayed significant walk (11.7 BB%) and home run (1.3 HR/9) problems at times this season. It comes with some risk because he could dominate, but I like some exposure to the Brewers and Hunter Renfroe ($4,600) on Saturday.
With a lefty on the mound, at least one - or maybe both - of Miguel Vargas ($2,300) or Trayce Thompson ($2,400) should be in the lineup. Kyle Freeland has looked better on the road this season, but has still surrendered a .314 wOBA to opposing hitters.
Both the matchup and lineup context aren't the best for Miguel Andujar ($2,300). But since being picked up by the Pirates, he's received regular plate appearances in the middle of a lineup for the first time in several seasons.
Stacks to Consider
Angels vs. Rangers (Cole Ragans): Shohei Ohtani ($6,000), Mike Trout ($5,800), Taylor Ward ($4,200)
The Angels' lineup is poor as a whole, but the top half remains quite good. Ohtani and Trout need no explanation and Ward has come on of late as the team's cleanup hitter. On Saturday, they will draw a matchup against Cole Ragans, who carries a 9.7 BB% and has allowed 1.5 HR/9 in his first taste of the majors. He also enters with the highest SIERA of any pitcher Saturday night, so the top of the LA order should be in a favorable position to produce.
White Sox vs. Padres (Mike Clevinger): Jose Abreu ($4,800), Eloy Jimenez ($5,200), Gavin Sheets ($2,400)
There's some concern the White Sox have nothing to play for, but they played the Padres tough Friday night. Mike Clevinger has been dreadful in 2022 and particularly of late with the third-lowest K-BB% of all pitchers today while serving up 1.6 HR/9. As such, I want to load up on the White Sox's primary power hitters.
Dodgers vs. Rockies (Kyle Freeland): Mookie Betts ($5,600), Trea Turner ($5,400), Will Smith ($5,200)
The Dodgers have shown no signs of slowing down offensively despite clinching home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. This is an expensive stack, but as was covered above there should be chances for at least one spot of value – and potentially more. Freeland pitches to contact, and that's a recipe for trouble against a lineup as good as the Dodgers.