This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
It's another full slate Friday night with the weather expected to clear up before things turn dark for the weekend. There's a nice variety of high-end pitchers, but in terms of hitting, most lineups will feature multiple players from the Padres-Rockies game.
A lot of people will look to the three biggest favorites and move on. Gerrit Cole ($12,000) has the best odds to win, as well as the most upside with potential to hit double-digit strikeouts any start. The Blue Jays don't have an overly high K% against righties (23.3), yet their .288 wOBA in the last month is still desirable. Max Scherzer ($11,600) has a slightly harder matchup, but has been on cruise control, allowing two runs in his last four starts while striking out 39. Blake Snell ($10,500) is the other big favorite and while he's cheaper, I usually avoid any pitcher against the Angels because of their low K rate (16.2% vs. southpaws).
Opposite of the Angels, the Rays and Cubs are all about striking out with a 26.5% and 30.4% K rate, respectively, in the last month against lefties. Andrew Heaney ($8,900) is an underdog, and even though he's given up six homers in three starts, he also has 28 strikeouts. As long as he can go at least five innings and strikeout eight batters, that's fine. If you prefer backing a favorite, Rich Hill ($9,700) has allowed five runs in his last five starts and has been stout with a 28.0 K%.
Adam Plutko ($7,600) and Kyle Gibson ($8,300) are in almost the same situation because of matchup, but the latter is easier to trust because of his K upside. Both the Tigers and Royals are near the bottom of the charts with a wOBA below .300 in the last month against righty arms. Gibson isn't the easiest guy to trust because he gave up five runs to the Tigers last start and five runs to the Royals in his first start of the year, but the overall numbers in this matchup point to success. Zach Davies ($8,000) isn't much different than Plutko in that he doesn't accrue many strikeouts, yet has the plus-matchup against the Giants. The downside with these guys is that they're maxed out at 40 fantasy points, and that's on a good day.
Daniel Ponce de Leon ($7,700) is an option after a solid spot start a few weeks ago, racking up 35 fantasy points. Steven Brault ($6,200) is a similar shot in the dark against the Marlins, who own a .280 wOBA against lefty hurlers in the last month. If he can match the six innings he went last start, that'd be enough for the price. If you're into backing guys coming off good starts, Nick Pivetta ($7,900) gave up one run in a complete game last outing, striking out six. The Braves aren't the best matchup given their seven-game win streak, but Pivetta could be the most productive mid-range arm on the slate.
Most lineups will look to San Diego-Colorado with the highest over/under on the slate by a couple runs. Jeff Hoffman has given up 11 runs in his last two road starts and Cal Quantrill has a 4.85 ERA in five outings. Everyone is on the table for the Padres, while Quantrill is significantly worse against lefty bats with a .400 OBP allowed to 71 faced. Fernando Tatis Jr. ($4,300) is back for the Padres, though you can get better value with Eric Hosmer ($3,800) or Wil Myers ($3,600), who own San Diego's best OBPs against righty pitchers in the last month, slightly above .350.
Two teams that haven't shown much power against lefties, the Indians and White Sox, are in position to go deep at least once. Ryan Carpenter has a 3.13 HR/9 allowed to righty bats and CC Sabathia is slightly behind at 2.63. You can find decent power at good rates if you look hard enough. Francisco Lindor ($4,000) is always a play, but Jordan Luplow ($3,000) has a .400 OBP and .531 ISO in his last 55 plate appearances against southpaws, while Roberto Perez ($2,900) is in a similar camp if he starts at .409 and .351. Eloy Jimenez ($3,300) crushed the last week and will get plenty of attention. Either White Sox catcher is in play, though James McCann ($2,800) is a better bet with a .467 OBP in his last 30 PA against lefties.
I wouldn't put too many eggs into the Twins even with how well they're hitting. Brad Keller has given up four home runs all season and has decent numbers against both sides of the plate. If you still wanted a piece of their lefty trio, Jorge Polanco ($4,200), Eddie Rosario ($4,100) and Max Kepler ($3,900) are rarely a bad choice against righty arms.
I'd also take a look at the Red Sox against Andrew Cashner, who is inconsistent and has allowed a .375 wOBA to righty bats. Lefties are usually the way to go for Boston, but I'm not opposed to Xander Bogaerts ($4,200) and J.D. Martinez ($4,100), or for cheaper, Michael Chavis ($3,100) and Christian Vazquez ($2,400).
Brewers vs. Drew Pomeranz (Giants)
Pomeranz was surprisingly efficient last start, but he still has terrible overall numbers with a .410 wOBA and .399 OBP allowed to righty hitters, which is perfect for the Brewers with their .233 ISO in the last month against lefty arms. Even though Yelich costs a boatload, you can still get by with this stack because of Grandal and Braun, who also hold solid ISOs against southpaws. Either way, Yelich is a must in this stack because he supplies most of the juice with a .467 OBP and .395 ISO in his last 45 PA against lefties.
Athletics vs. Marco Gonzales (Mariners)
Gonzales opened the season pitching well, but has slipped and has one quality start in five of his last six. That includes allowing at least five runs in three of his last five and Oakland is another team that can capitalize with a .373 wOBA against lefty arms in the last month. Chapman has four doubles in 13 career at-bats against Gonzales and I think that's worth exploring, while Piscotty leads the team with a .433 OBP in his last 30 PA against lefties. As for Olson, it's a lefty-lefty match, but Gonzales has worse numbers against lefty bats this year and Olson has a .571 ISO in his last 32 PA against lefty arms.
Rockies vs. Cal Quantrill (Padres)
It's almost impossible to ignore this game whether in cash or GPP given the over/under and pitching matchup. I'm rolling with an expensive trio of lefty bats, though Tony Wolters ($2,800) can be used if in the squad. If things go according to the numbers, the Rockies will have a field day with Quantrill. Of course, if you want a little more power than Murphy, Nolan Arenado ($4,700) and Trevor Story ($4,600) are available, but only if you go cheap at pitcher.