This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
As has been the case early this season, there are games throughout the day Saturday. The early slate offers eight matchups while the main slate – which kicks off at 7:05 pm EDT – only lists five. We'll focus on the latter set because it's still considered the main slate. There are a nice array of options on the mound, making it fairly balanced from both a hitter and pitcher perspective.
Corbin Burnes ($9,500) is $1,000 below Clayton Kershaw, and admittedly has been the more inconsistent of the duo. Despite a rocky start to the new campaign, Burnes remains the only pitcher with a strikeout rate above 30 percent since the start of 2022 in Saturday's pool and has also produced the lowest SIERA at 2.91. A matchup against St. Louis isn't ideal since the lineup carries a .340 wOBA (fourth-best in the league) and the league's ninth-lowest strikeout rate.
The small slate makes things tricky at pitcher as Reid Detmers ($8,500) is the next-best pitcher from a value perspective. Throwing him against Burnes isn't optimal because only one can earn the win and the additional four DK points. For those who want to use Kershaw, pairing him with Detmers makes sense. For those who prefer Burnes, Nathan Eovaldi (8,800) is in a similar salary range as Detmers and has close to an identical strikeout rate with a superior SIERA since the start of last season.
There are a few strikes against Noah Davis ($5,500), the first of which is that he's only thrown a small sample of innings in the majors. The second is far worse with Coors Field his home, and he'll be pitching there Saturday night. At the same time, we have to note Davis boasts a career 25 percent strikeout rate and 16.7 K-BB%. For those willing to accept variance, he makes for a solid value option.
Tommy Henry is the clear pitcher to pick on Saturday considering his career 1.9 HR/9 with only a 7.3 K-BB% -- the highest and lowest marks of any pitcher on this slate. There aren't many particularly desirable Rockies' hitters, but C.J. Cron ($5,200) is capable of delivering multi-homer efforts.
Josh Lowe's ($4,600) breakout seems to be going unnoticed, but he lists a .430 wOBA and 185 wRC+ early this season. Lance Lynn has been a homer machine in the first month of the campaign, so there's no reason to shy away.
With Yoan Moncada out for the foreseeable future, Jake Burger's ($2,900) salary is likely to increase. He should be valued higher as he's averaged 8.4 DK points and carries a 1.071 OPS so far. He draws an unimposing matchup against a combination of Yonny Chirinos and Calvin Faucher.
The injury to Aaron Judge and demotion of Franchy Cordero has opened up opportunity in New York. With a righty on the mound, Willie Calhoun ($2,300) should be a regular in the lineup. He hit cleanup Friday and would be an obvious salary saver if that situation repeated itself Saturday.
Stacks to Consider
The Rockies stand out as the obvious stack due to the stats cited above regarding Henry. Bryant and Cron should be locked into the stack, but the team also offers some nice value options. Elias Diaz ($4,400) is reasonably valued given the context of Coors Field and that he's regularly batted fifth against southpaws this season. The combination of the hitting environment and the fact the stack is expensive means this is likely to be a popular play.
It's hard to bet against the Rays given their start to the campaign, but rolling out the combination of Faucher and Chirinos isn't ideal. The former has a home run problem, and the latter has never struck out more than 20 percent of the batters he's faced over a large sample. A White Sox stack is another affordable option because the lineup has underperformed. However, the trio in the middle of the order can produce big on any given night and each player isn't valued that way.