This Saturday, Major League Baseball has another full day of action with most of the games spread throughout the afternoon. There is still a solid four-game slate Saturday night on DraftKings that gets underway at 7:15 p.m. ET. The four games include another chapter in the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry, the Phillies continuing their first series after firing Joe Girardi, the Braves at Coors Field and the Mets visiting the Dodgers for a matchup of division leaders.
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Zack Wheeler, Philadelphia Phillies vs. Los Angeles Angels ($10,000) – Wheeler is only 3-3 in his nine starts but has pitched very well for the Phillies, especially lately. After starting the year 0-3, he has gone 3-0 with a 1.40 ERA and 1.83 FIP over his past six outings. In five of those six starts, he had at least 20 DKFP and reached over 28 DKFP in three of those outings. He has 58 strikeouts in his 51 1/3 innings on the season with at least seven strikeouts in each of those six most recent starts. The Angels have a few elite bats but have cooled off after a strong offensive start to the season. Over the past 15 days, they have the second-fewest runs in the Majors and have only hit .239 while averaging 3.2 runs per game. Wheeler should be a good option as he tries to extend their struggles and continue his strong run of results.
Other Options – Walker Buehler ($9,800), Michael Lorenzen ($8,000)
Caleb Killian, Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals ($5,300) – The Cardinals are a tough matchup, but Killian is still worth a look since he’s available at a bargain rate in what will be his MLB debut. Killian is the Cubs’ top pitching prospect and the team’s No. 5 overall prospect, per MLB Pipeline. He was acquired from the Giants in the Kris Bryant trade and has impressed throughout his time in the minors. In his nine starts for the Iowa Cubs, the 25-year-old posted a 2.06 ERA with a 2.93 FIP and 41 strikeouts in 39 1/3 innings. Killian added velocity during the pandemic layoff and now works in the upper 90s with strong command and solid off-speed options. He could be up to stay if he has a strong debut on Saturday night, and he’s definitely a young arm to target for season-long leagues, as well.
Dansby Swanson, Atlanta Braves at Colorado Rockies ($4,400) – Swanson has been very streaky throughout his career and is definitely on a heater right now. He has hit safely in 16 of his past 17 games and moved from the bottom of the lineup into the second spot in the order on a regular basis. Over those 17 games, he is 26-for-68 (.382) with three doubles, two home runs and five stolen bases. His .421 wOBA and 45.6% hard-hit rate shows he brings plenty of extra-base potential to this great matchup highlighted below in stacks. He is hitting .304 with a .217 ISO and .406 wOBA on the season against southpaws, making him an option with elite upside from his mid-range salary.
Justin Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers vs. New York Mets ($4,400) – Turner has also been heating up lately, even though his season-long numbers are still underwhelming. The veteran had hit safely in seven of his nine most recent contests, going 12-for-35 with six doubles and six runs scored. He hasn’t hit lefties especially well this season, but he has typically feasted on them in his career, so he should be in a good spot against David Peterson ($8,600). Turner doesn’t bring the top-level power he did in his prime, but the former Met is still a solid play at this price against his former squad.
Other Options – Paul Goldschmidt ($5,500), Ozzie Albies ($4,700)
Christopher Morel, Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals ($4,100) – Morel has locked down the Cubs’ leadoff spot and has hit safely in 13 of his past 14 games while hitting .259 with a .155 ISO and .339 wOBA. He also had five stolen bases in those 14 games while scoring 12 runs and working eight walks. Since I like the Cubs’ matchup in this doubleheader and think they’re poised for a big game, Morel is a great play at just over $4K.
Bryson Stott, Philadelphia Phillies vs. Los Angeles Angels ($2,600) – The first-round pick from 2019 hasn’t been impressive overall in his rookie season so far, but he has shown some great signs lately. He’s still only hitting .160 but has gone 5-for-11 with a home run, a stolen base, three runs scored and three RBIs over his past three games. It’s also key to realize opposing SP Michael Lorenzen ($8,000) has allowed lefties to post a .390 wOBA while holding righties to a .190 wOBA, so stacking Phils left-handed batters like Stott is an option to consider.
Other Options – José Iglesias ($3,700), Alfonso Rivas ($2,100)
Bryce Harper, Philadelphia Phillies vs. Los Angeles Angels ($5,400) – Harper returned from a two-game absence with a bang — two of them actually. He homered twice in the Phillies’ 10-0 rout of the Angels Friday night, and he’s another lefty who will try to take advantage of the favorable splits against Lorenzen. Harper has hammered 12 home runs in his 46 games while hitting .308 with a .308 ISO and .409 wOBA. He has nine of those home runs and a .470 wOBA in his 24 games since May 1. While he has struggled to stay in the lineup, he has been very productive when available.
Conner Joe, Colorado Rockies vs. Atlanta Braves ($4,300) – Joe has continued his breakout season even though his salary has leveled out a little bit after surging to the top of the salary structure earlier this season. He usually hits leadoff for the Rockies, making him a strong option at this price whenever they’re at Coors Field. He has gone 16-for-60 (.267) over his past 15 games with a .319 wOBA. On the season at home, he has a .373 wOBA.
Other Options – Mookie Betts ($5,600), Ronald Acuña Jr. ($5,300)
Brendan Donovan, St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs ($3,400) – Donovan is a member of the latest wave of young Cardinals talent that has jump-started their offense lately. Donovan has hit .296 with one home run, one stolen base and a .378 wOBA across his first 100 plate appearances with the Cardinals. He brings nice positional versatility, good upside in the $3K-range and is establishing himself as a regular contributor for St. Louis.
Michael Harris II, Atlanta Braves at Colorado Rockies ($2,700) – The Braves are giving their 21-year-old prospect a look in CF, and so far he seems to be adjusting well to the Majors even though he jumped Triple-A. In Double-A, he hit .305 with five homers, 33 runs, 33 RBIs and 11 stolen bases in 43 games to start the season. Since being called up, he has gone 7-for-25 (.280) with a 44.4% hard-hit rate and a .296 wOBA. He has yet to attempt a steal but has hit safely in four straight games and is usually batting ninth, which puts him directly in front of Acuña and the rest of the power bats for Atlanta. He’s in a good matchup detailed below and is a great way to get a piece of a strong lineup for a very affordable salary.
Other Options – Ian Happ ($3,600), Nick Plummer ($2,100)
TEAMS TO STACK
Atlanta Braves at Colorado Rockies – Coors Field was surprisingly quiet on Friday night with just four total runs scored in the Braves’ 10-inning win. Saturday, that will probably not be the case as Kyle Freeland ($6,000) and Spencer Strider ($7,100) match up in the third game of this series. The over/under on that game is 12 on Draftkings Sportsbook, which makes it by far the highest line of the day. Freeland is 1-5 on the year with a 4.96 ERA and 4.15 FIP. He has given up five home runs, three of which have actually come against lefties, who have a .407 wOBA against him, meaning it isn’t necessary to avoid the lefty-on-lefty matchup in this case. He has a 6.25 home ERA, giving up 43 hits and 24 runs in 31 2/3 innings at Coors this season. Ronald Acuña Jr. ($5,300) and Austin Riley ($5,300) are the only Braves bats over $5K, and there is some nice mid-range value available as well with Swanson (discussed above), Marcell Ozuna ($4,200), Travis d’Arnaud ($4,400) and Ozzie Albies ($4,700). Harris (discussed above) and Matt Olson ($4,600) also make sense since Freeland hasn’t been lights out against lefties either.
Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals – The Cubs have been hitting the ball well lately, scoring the fourth-most runs in the Majors over the past 15 days, averaging six runs per contest. They get a good matchup in this contest against either Johan Oviedo ($7,400), who posted a 5.58 ERA in Triple-A, or Andre Pallante ($4,000) in a bullpen game. Willson Contreras ($4,500) is returning following a one-game absence after being hit by a pitch. Before the injury, he averaged 12.2 DKFP over his previous 10 contests. Christopher Morel (discussed above) has also been hitting the ball well and is a nice mid-range leadoff option while Patrick Wisdom ($4,300), Ian Happ ($3,600) and Frank Schwindel ($3,200) are affordable bats in the middle of the order.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is z.thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
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