This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
It's going to be a run of "It's the final [blank] of the MLB season" here in October. This time, it's the last Sunday with eight games on the slate and the first pitch at 1:35 p.m. EDT. Here are my lineup recommendations.
Shane Bieber, CLE vs. KC ($10,700): The only concern here is that with a playoff spot clinched, the Guardians may pull Bieber early. However, it only takes five innings to qualify for a win, and his 2.88 FIP gives me plenty to like. The Royals rank 24th in runs scored and, say, six innings of Bieber making short work of the their lineup and a W works for me.
Zack Wheeler, PHI at WAS ($9,600): Wheeler hasn't been great on the road with a 4.11 ERA, as opposed to his 1.85 mark at home. But since joining the Phillies, his road number has decreased to 3.65. And Wheeler will be facing the Nationals, who sit 26th in offense.
Marcus Stroman, CHC vs. CIN ($7,300): I'm not expecting a lot of runs in this game with the Reds 22nd in that category and the Cubs 23rd. Over his last six starts, Stroman has posted a 2.50 ERA. Maybe he can put one final exclamation mark on the season to close out his hot run.
With the MVP in sight, Paul Goldschmidt ($6,100) has gone cold. He'll be looking to heat back up for the playoffs, and his 1.098 OPS at home this year is encouraging. Roansy Contreras comes in with a 3.72 ERA, but also a 4.21 FIP and a 4.15 road ERA.
It's youth versus experience here and I'm recommending Oneil Cruz ($5,700) against Adam Wainwright. The youngster has produced an .840 OPS versus right handers during his brief career. Wainwright was enjoying a solid season, but has slumped to a 6.38 ERA across five starts. With some pitchers, you might write that off as a bad stretch. But with someone at 41, you wonder if maybe his arm is spent.
Patrick Corbin and his 6.08 ERA are slated to take the mound for the Nationals on Sunday. That's enticing, but I'm foregoing the stack here as he's a lefty. However, I still like Rhys Hoskins ($4,900) versus the struggling Corbin as he's registered a .994 OPS against southpaws since 2020.
In his rookie campaign, Christopher Morel ($3,900) has 16 home runs and 10 stolen bases. He's appreciated his new home park with an .832 OPS. Chase Anderson has pitched sparingly the last three seasons. But when he has, he's compiled a 6.45 ERA.
Stacks to Consider
Astros vs. Rays (Corey Kluber): Yordan Alvarez ($6,300), Kyle Tucker ($5,100), Jeremy Pena ($4,300)
In his first campaign as a Ray, Kluber's been available by making 30 starts while also being mediocre with a 4.36 ERA - which rises to 5.15 on the road. Lefties have also hit .279 against, and the Astros have two big-time lefties to include.
Alvarez has made a real push to try and get to 40 homers with six in the last three weeks to go with a 1.380 OPS. He's also produced a 1.045 against right handers on the year. Tucker has 29 home runs and 25 steals, with 22 of those latter coming against righties. His OPS versus right-handers the last couple years is .894. The rookie shortstop Pena has racked up 20 home runs and 11 swipes. He doesn't walk, but he's slugged .488 the last two weeks.
Yankees vs. Orioles (Kyle Bradish): Anthony Rizzo ($5,100), Giancarlo Stanton ($5,000), Gleyber Torres ($4,200)
Bradish's rookie campaign is a reminder that, for all their strides as a team, the Orioles still need to improve their rotation. The 26-year-old has struggled to a 5.11 ERA through 22 starts. You don't need to stretch for lefties either as the right-handed pitcher has let his fellow righties hit .285 against.
With one more homer - which would be his 33rd - Rizzo will set a new career-high. 19 of them have come at home, where he's posted an .848 OPS. Stanton's endured a tough year, but still has 29 home runs in 108 games. His issues have been on the road with an .857 OPS at Yankee Stadium. Torres is getting hot heading into the playoffs having produced a 1.148 OPS the last three weeks. He's been better against lefties - which doesn't factor in here - but his .793 OPS at home does.
Guardians vs. Royals (Max Castillo): Jose Ramirez ($6,200), Steven Kwan ($5,400), Andres Gimenez ($5,200)
Castillo has recorded a 4.98 ERA on the season. But since joining the Royals, that number skyrockets to 7.90 for the righty. That should allow this Guardians trio to take advantage of this matchup.
Ramirez has accumulated 29 home runs and 18 stolen bases. He's a switch hitter, but his OPS versus righties is .913. Kwan has settled in well as a southpaw leadoff hitter. He's hit .301 to go with a .375 OBP and 19 stolen bases along with an .817 OPS versus righties. Gimenez's breakthrough campaign has seen him slash .302/.373/.475. The lefty has stayed strong with an .864 OPS the last three weeks.