DraftKings picks: Stanton likely to homer
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The players listed below could provide difference-making stats for DraftKings participants on Sunday.
Giancarlo Stanton (Marlins): With a career .290/.384/.611 slash line against left-handers, Stanton is a likely candidate to put a ball into the outfield seats when facing a southpaw. The outfielder could provide game-changing statistics when he faces Rockies lefty Jorge De La Rosa (5.53 ERA, 1.45 WHIP in 2015).
Martin Prado (Marlins): The third baseman -- who also qualifies at second base in DraftKings contests -- could reach base often and score multiple runs when he brings his lifetime .823 OPS against left-handers (.739 vs. righties) into a matchup with De La Rosa (career 4.63 ERA, 1.44 WHIP). As a big leaguer, De La Rosa has allowed right-handed hitters such as Prado to record a .796 OPS (.632 OPS allowed to lefty batters).
David Ortiz (Red Sox): Ortiz, who's hitting .225 with seven homers across 204 at-bats this season, could have an economical DraftKings price tag when he hits at home against Blue Jays fly-ball-prone righty Marco Estrada (lifetime 1.4 HR/9 rate). The slugger has produced a lofty lifetime .970 OPS against right-handers in comparison to an .807 mark vs. lefties.
Dustin Pedroia (Red Sox): From his perch atop the lineup, the second baseman could display his power or score multiple runs against Estrada (career 4.19 ERA). Pedroia -- who could also thrive against an underwhelming Blue Jays bullpen -- has produced balanced lifetime splits that include a .297/.356/.439 slash line against right-handers such as Estrada.
Denard Span (Nationals): With a lifetime .759 OPS against right-handers (.715 vs. lefties), Span could reach base often from the leadoff spot against righty Taylor Jungmann, who will be making his second Major League start after posting a 4.10 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP in his Minor League career. The outfield could be stacked with multiple Nationals players with the hope that they can push across several runs against the inexperienced Jungmann and a Brewers bullpen that lacks elite arms.
Jhonny Peralta (Cardinals): The shortstop has displayed serious power potential this season -- he is tied for first in baseball at his position with 10 homers in 230 at-bats. Peralta could add to that home run total on Sunday against fly-ball-prone righty Chris Young, who posted a 1.4 HR/9 rate in 2014.
Matt Carpenter (Cardinals):The third baseman has long fared best against right-handers, against whom he has produced a lifetime .844 OPS (.764 vs. lefties). Carpenter could produce big numbers on Sunday against Young, who posted a 5.02 FIP across 165 innings last season.
Prince Fielder (Rangers): Fielder could be worth a major expenditure by DraftKings participants when he puts his career .965 OPS against right-handers (.801 vs. lefties) to the test against Twins righty Phil Hughes. Hughes, the owner of a lifetime 1.2 HR/9 rate, has a 4.81 ERA this season.
Joey Gallo (Rangers): The young third baseman is hitting .286 with two homers across 35 at-bats and has already shown that he can provide difference-making numbers in the right matchup. On Sunday, Gallo could display his power at his hitter-friendly home park against Hughes (career 4.35 ERA).
Shin-Soo Choo (Rangers): With a lifetime .903 OPS against right-handers (.673 vs. lefties), Choo could be part of a Rangers stack at his offense-inducing home venue against Hughes. The outfielder often hits second in Texas' productive lineup, which ranks second in the Majors in runs scored since May 1.
Max Scherzer (Nationals): During his initial season with Washington, Scherzer has dominated the competition to the tune of a 2.13 ERA, a 0.95 WHIP and a 10.4 K/9 rate. The right-hander could continue to post difference-making results when he faces a Brewers squad that ranks 23rd in the Majors with a .674 OPS against righties. He could also pick up a win in a seemingly advantageous matchup against Jungmann.
Dan Haren (Marlins): Haren has produced a 3.12 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP this season, with much of his best work coming in Miami. The right-hander could continue to excel at his pitcher-friendly home venue when he faces a Rockies lineup that has produced a .684 OPS on the road this season (.818 at home). With a quality effort, Haren could earn a win in a seemingly advantageous matchup against De La Rosa (career 4.65 ERA on the road).
Chris Heston (Giants): The author of the first no-hitter of the 2015 campaign (June 9 at the Mets), Heston has posted a 3.77 ERA this season. The right-hander has handcuffed right-handed hitters this season, holding them to a .555 opponents' OPS (.832 OPS allowed to lefty hitters). On Sunday, he could succeed against a D-backs lineup that possesses several key members who bat from the right side. Heston may also benefit from pitching for a team that ranks sixth in the Majors with a .706 defensive efficiency ratio.
Lance McCullers (Astros): The rookie right-hander has been great since arriving in the Majors on May 18, posting a 2.32 ERA and a 0.90 WHIP. McCullers could continue to succeed when he works at home against a Mariners lineup that ranks 26th in the Majors with a .665 OPS against righties.
All statistics are accurate through the completion of Friday's games.