Starting Thursday at 1:10 p.m. ET, we are looking at the main slate that features seven afternoon games in which weather might play a factor.
Highest-priced pitchers on DraftKings and FanDuel:
- Jose Berrios (R) $9,800 | (DK) $9,600 | (FD) MIN vs SEA
- Corbin Burnes (R) $9,400 | (DK) $9,400 | (FD) MIL vs. STL
- Lance Lynn (R) $8,700 | (DK) $8,900 | (FD) CWS vs. KC
- Jake Arrieta (R) $8,500 | (DK) $8,500 | (FD) CHC vs. PIT
Jose Berrios started the 2021 season exceptionally well with a 12-strikeout performance in six innings against the Milwaukee Brewers. Facing the Seattle Mariners in his second start, Berrios looks to continue his dominance at home. The Mariners rank in the bottom five in both strikeouts per game and team batting average.
My only concern with Twins starting pitchers is that they seem to be pulled early on by manager Rocco Baldelli at the start of the season. Only one of their starting pitchers has thrown over 90 pitches in the team’s first six games of the year. According to Bales Model, the highest rated pitcher on today’s slate is Berrios.
As noted above, the second highest-priced pitcher on both DraftKings and FanDuel is Corbin Burnes. He pitched against Berrios in his first start this season, putting together a strong performance. With 11 strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings, Burnes’ only blemish was a solo home run from Byron Buxton in the seventh inning. That ended up being the only base runner he allowed and was pulled immediately after it. The Cardinals have scored 33 runs in their first six games of the campaign. However, they’re only looking at a 3.8 implied runs total in this game.
Lance Lynn just missed the century mark by throwing 99 pitches in his first start of the season.Yet, don’t forget about the possibility of rain. There is a 28% chance of precipitation and 10-mph wind coming in from right field. With all things considered, it’s likely the weather will influence this game. Lynn is pitching the home opener for the Chicago White Sox, who will be facing the Kansas City Royals (33 runs scored in their first five games). An interesting stat I stumbled upon is the fact that over the course of the last two seasons, Lynn is 7-2 in day games and has 102 strikeouts compared to only 19 walks.
Allowing seven base runners in six innings, Jake Arrieta, began his season with a quality start and name in the win column. After a three-year absence, Arrieta rejoined the Chicago Cubs for a second stint. The 11-mph wind coming in from center field should help pitchers in this game against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who still don’t have a position player priced above $4,000 in their projected lineup. Arrieta is looking to continue his form against the Pirates, as he is yet to fall to them since the 2016 season.
Another pitcher to consider is Adam Wainwright from the St. Louis Cardinals. Wainwright will be facing a team in the Milwaukee Brewers that has struck out the third most in all of baseball (70) at the moment.
The top stack comes to you from the Colorado Rockies (-120):
- Garrett Hampson (R)
- Trevor Story (R)
- Charlie Blackmon (L)
- Raimel Tapia (L)
The dynamic of Coors Field is back, however there is a projected wind of 10-mph blowing in from left center. The Rockies will have Merrill Kelly pitching to them from the Arizona Diamondbacks. The implied runs total of 5.8 runs is the highest projected total on the entire slate. On FanDuel, this stack will cost you $14.6k in salary and are projected for a combined 52.2 fantasy points.
Bales Model projects the highest-rated play on the slate is Josh Rojas of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Rojas only has one hit in his first 16 plate appearances in the early season, but like most players visiting Corrs Field, he gets a projection bump. Look for Rojas to finally put some hits together. He is one of my favorite plays of the slate, as projected ownership will be low due to his rough start to the season and mid-level price of $4,400 DK and $2,900 FD.
Another possible stack to consider is the Boston Red Sox. With a projected implied runs total of 5.1 the Red Sox will look to get after Orioles pitcher Matt Harvey. Consistency seems to be Harvey’s problem as he had an ERA of 11.57 last season in seven games pitched. Allowing 15 runs in 11 2/3 innings is a stat he’s hoping to correct in the new year.
- Mitch Garver, C, Minnesota (R): $4,500 DraftKings | $2,400 FanDuel
- Kyle Garlick, OF, Minnesota (R): $2,400 DraftKings | $2,100 FanDuel
Pitcher Marco Gonzales will be on the mound for the Seattle Mariners. In his first start, Gonzales gave up three home runs to the San Francisco Giants. Although the venue will be different than the first time, I truly see a similar result coming as the Twins have the greatest odds on the slate of -184.
As you can see with the above prices, Garver is completely mispriced and way too cheap for a player of his caliber on FanDuel. Garlick is a solid value play on both sites.
Photo Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images
Pictured: Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Jose Berrios