Wednesday features a 10-game main slate on DraftKings and FanDuel, each of which begin at 7:05 p.m. ET.
Tonight’s slate is somewhat lacking in elite highly-priced pitchers but offers two talented pitchers over $9,000:
- Mike Clevinger (R), $9,600, CLE @ CIN
- Yu Darvish (R), $9,500, CHC vs. KC
Clevinger is the more talented pitcher of the two, but he also draws the tougher assignment on the road against the Cincinnati Reds. Cincinnati is the 11th-most highly valued batting team (3.8 above value) according to FanGraphs. To contrast, the Cleveland Indians are second-to-last in value (-18.3) in baseball.
Clevinger is projected to score 38.73 FanDuel points and is the fourth-best pitching option on today’s main slate according to the Bales Model. He will have to control his walks (4.09 walks per nine innings pitched) and home runs allowed (3.27 home runs per nine innings) to return value as the slate’s highest-priced pitcher.
Darvish toes the rubber as the Chicago Cubs aim for a third straight win against the Kansas City Royals. In his 10 innings of action this season, Darvish has been a half-win player while racking up 12 strikeouts and allowing only one walk. He is also the fifth-best pitching option according to the Bales Model.
The Royals scored four runs against the Cubs in two games at Wrigley Field, but a welcome wagon will not be waiting for the Royals in Kansas City. The Royals are projected to score 3.9 runs, which ranks as the second-lowest scoring projection on the main slate. Not surprisingly, Chicago is listed as a -210 favorite — best on the evening.
Both pitchers carry a slate-high ownership projection between 9% and 12%, largely due to the lack of top-end pitching options. Ownership will likely be flat, rendering lower-priced options equally attractive, with similar risk profiles, and a smaller price tag.
Lance McCullers Jr. gets to feast on the soft-hitting Arizona Diamondbacks. Arizona’s 52 wRC+ and .265 slugging percentage are the worst in baseball, and their .286 on-base percentage is second-worst.
McCullers Jr.’s name has been synonymous with walks, but the Diamondbacks’ feeble offense may mitigate the risk of a short outing. As a result, McCullers Jr. is more likely to earn a quality start. The risk of playing McCullers is reflected in his 41.93 Bales Model score, but his 32.72-point FanDuel projected ranks fourth tonight.
Differentiating lineups matters — especially in slates with flatter pricing — and McCullers offers a high ceiling and a modest 5% to 8% projected ownership.
Sean Manaea is the highest-rated pitcher on the Bales Model (72.6) as he takes on the Texas Rangers in Oakland tonight. Cooler weather is in the forecast for tonight’s game, which plays a significant role in limiting ball distance — especially on the west coast. Accordingly, the Rangers are projected to score 3.5 runs, which is the lowest total on tonight’s slate.
Manaea is working back from arm issues and may not qualify for a quality start on FanDuel, but a win and a strikeout-per-inning rate is a strong possibility.
Julio Teheran will make his Angels season debut against the Mariners in Seattle. He ranks as the seventh-best pitcher in the Bales Model and is facing a Mariners lineup that has scored three or fewer runs in four consecutive games. The Angels scored 27 runs over their four games against Seattle this season and are projected for 4.8 tonight.
Sean Newcomb is a sneaky play $5,800. He ranks fourth in the Bales Model this evening and faces the Toronto Blue Jays. The Jays are 0-3 against left-handed pitchers this season and have been outscored 20-7 in those contests.
- 1. David Dahl (L)
- 2. Trevor Story (R)
- 3. Charlie Blackmon (L)
- 4. Nolan Arenado (R)
Total Salary: $16,100
Each player has a projected FanDuel score of 13.9 or higher and a ceiling between 48.2 to 53.3. The stack is projected to score 58.9 points.
The Rockies are also the top stacking option on DraftKings. Nonetheless their opponent, San Francisco, offers a cheaper stack that has similar upside:
- 1. Mike Yastrzemski (L)
- 2. Alex Dickerson (L)
- 3. Donovan Solano (R)
- 4. Brandon Belt (L)
Total Salary: $19,900
This foursome is projected to score 6.4 fewer DraftKings points than the Rockies stack but saves you $3,000 in salary. Each player is projected to be owned in 5% to 8% of lineups — a far cry from the 13% to 16% ownership of the Colorado stack.
Willson Contreras has a Bargain Rating over 90% according to tonight’s FanDuel Pro Trends on FantasyLabs. The Chicago Cubs are projected to score 5.3 runs, and Contreras is expected to hit in the heart of the lineup.
Mitch Garver also reports a strong Bargain Rating and has logged back-to-back positive hitting games heading into Wednesday’s matchup. He has scored runs in consecutive games, has reached base three times, and hit his first home run of the season on Sunday. Garver is coming off a day of rest and has also experienced a $500 price drop on FanDuel.