Baseball brings a full slate with 15 games Friday, 14 of which comprise the featured contests in DFS. There are a lot of options to choose from, including a few aces taking the mound, and some offensive stacks with plenty of upside. Consider using the picks below and plugging them into our MLB Lineup Optimizer to help complete the rest of your lineup.
Jacob deGrom, at Marlins (FD: $11,700, DK: $13,600)
This stands out as the best pitching matchup on Friday. The Mets have had a disappointing season, but deGrom has excelled with a 1.69 ERA, 2.14 FIP and a 1.01 WHIP. He’s always been a strikeout pitcher, but he currently has career-highs in both swinging-strike rate (15.2%) and strikeout rate (31.4%). When hitters do actually make contact, they haven’t squared him up with a 27.8% hard-hit rate and only five home runs in 101 1/3 innings. The anemic Marlins have scored the third-fewest runs (296) in baseball, leaving deGrom with tremendous upside.
Patrick Corbin, vs. Giants (FD: $9,600, DK: $11,900)
Corbin got off to a blistering start this season, but had allowed at least five runs in three of his last four starts before his last outing against the Pirates. However, he rebounded in a big way, holding the Pirates scoreless and striking out 12 in seven innings. Despite his recent struggles, he still has a 3.24 ERA, 2.85 FIP and a 1.00 WHIP on the season. A big reason for his improvement has been his 14.5% swinging-strike rate, which has helped him to an 11.6 K/9. He’s already made three starts against the Giants this season, allowing four runs and fanning 24 batters in 20 2/3 innings. The Giants have struck out the sixth-most times (741) in baseball and don’t score a lot of runs, so Corbin’s success against them should not come as a surprise.
Marco Gonzales, vs. Royals (FD: $7,300, DK: $7,800)
Gonzales had a nightmare of a two-start week last week, facing the Red Sox and Yankees on the road. He understandably struggled, allowing 11 runs in 12 1/3 innings. Before those gruesome outings, he had allowed three runs or fewer in six straight starts. He’s not a big strikeout pitcher, but he’s shown excellent control by throwing a first-pitch strike to 67.6% of the hitters that he has faced and allowing just 2.0 BB/9. The Royals have scored the fewest runs (283) in baseball, leaving Gonzales with upside in tournament play, despite his lack of strikeouts.
Cleveland Indians vs. Paul Blackburn, Oakland Athletics
Stadium – Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
Blackburn had never pitched above Double-A before 2017, but not only did he make it to Triple-A last year, he also made 10 starts for the Athletics. He finished with a 3.22 ERA, 4.39 FIP and a 1.26 WHIP, but his 3.4 K/9 was concerning for his prognosis moving forward. He’s made four starts this season, and although his 4.20 FIP isn’t nearly as bad as his 8.83 ERA, he’s allowing too many baserunners with a 1.56 WHIP. The Indians are tied for the fourth-most runs scored (391) in baseball and could give Blackburn plenty of problems in this game.
Kennedy is 6-20 since the start of the 2017 season, and while his teammates haven’t supported him all that well during that stretch, Kennedy hasn’t exactly helped his cause, either. He’s struggled to keep hitters off base with a 1.45 WHIP this season, resulting in a 5.09 ERA and a 4.65 FIP. Kennedy has allowed at least 31 home runs in each of the last three seasons and is on pace to do that again this year with 15 home runs allowed in 86 2/3 innings. The Mariners have averaged close to five runs per game in their last 10 contests, so look for Nelson Cruz and company to have another scoring outburst against Kennedy.
Hess started out the season strong by allowing three runs or fewer in four of his first five outings. He only had 12 strikeouts over 24 2/3 innings, giving little reason for confidence. The league has caught up to him, scoring 15 runs across 12 innings in his last three starts. Without strikeout stuff, he’s asking for trouble with his 1.48 WHIP. The Angels have struck out the fifth-fewest times in baseball (637) and have hit the fourth-most home runs (111), leaving Hess with a very tough matchup.
The Rangers have struggled to find reliable starting pitchers outside of Cole Hamels as they have the second-highest starters ERA (5.25) in baseball. Their bevy of injuries has forced them to turn to Gallardo, who hasn’t had an ERA below 5.42 since the 2015 season. He’s only made two starts for the Rangers and didn’t pitch well in either of them, allowing nine runs and 17 total baserunners in 10 1/3 innings. He also allowed three home runs after posting a 1.7 HR/9 with the Mariners last year. The White Sox aren’t normally a lineup you want to stack because they are in the bottom-five in runs scored, but you might be able to take advantage Friday by using some of their hitters with cheap prices.