We get the full slate of games to look at Sunday! The only concern is that with the autumn weather here, the looming threat of rain rises. It's definitely even more important than usual to start paying attention to weather reports in the lead up to the day's games. First pitch is at 1:05 p.m. ET. Here are my lineup recommendations.
Max Scherzer, NYM at OAK ($61): Sweating out an NL East battle with Atlanta, the Mets can't ease off the clutch, which means we can count on Scherzer likely going at least six innings in this easy matchup. Oakland has a pitcher-friendly ballpark and a .626 team OPS, a level of futility that only the Tigers are anywhere near. Not that a three-time Cy Young winner who owns a 2.15 ERA this season needs much help.
Cristian Javier, HOU at BAL ($50): If you play DFS baseball these days, you likely don't need to be told not to judge a pitcher by their win-loss record. Javier may be 10-9, but he has a 2.77 ERA and has struck out 11.8 batters per nine innings. Baltimore has made real strides in 2022, but not so many strides that the team doesn't still rank in the bottom 10 in runs scored.
Luis Castillo, SEA at KC ($47): It's always nice when you get what you dealt for in a trade. Castillo had a 2.86 ERA in 14 starts with the Reds. Since he moved to the Mariners, his through nine starts ERA is 2.83. Like the Mets, the Mariners have plenty left to play for, and they'll also have an easy matchup with a Royals team that ranks 24th in runs scored.
While he won't hit 52 home runs this season, Pete Alonso ($18) has racked up a personal-high 123 RBI, owing in part an increase in the level of talent around him. Besides, 38 homers is nothing to sneeze at. In eight starts since joining the Athletics, JP Sears has a 4.46 ERA. If you're worried about the Athletics' pitcher-friendly park making it tougher for Alonso to clear the fence, note that he's not an all-or-nothing player. He has a .265 average and .345 OBP.
Though Corey Seager ($16) has seen his average drop in his first season with the Rangers, his 32 home runs are a personal best. Plus, he has a .916 OPS at home, so clearly the change of venue hasn't been a problem. While Aaron Civale's 3.85 FIP isn't as bad as his 5.29 ERA, it still isn't good, and his career FIP is an uninspiring 4.10.
A .281 average and 17 home runs is not too shabby from sophomore slugger Andrew Vaughn ($11). He definitely has shown a preference for facing lefties, as in his career he has an .866 OPS against southpaws. Tyler Alexander has a 6.14 ERA on the road, and since 2020 he has allowed righties to hit .282 against him
Admittedly, Charlie Blackmon's ($10) peak is behind him, but he still has a .785 OPS at Coors Field this year. He's hit .281 at home with a .453 slugging percentage, and betting on Coors is often a wise move. Mike Clevinger's return to MLB action in 2022 has gone poorly. He has a 4.96 FIP and has given up 1.6 home runs per nine innings.
Stacks to Consider
I mentioned Coors Field earlier, and my return to the Mile High City was inevitable when it was time to stack. Freeland doesn't allow a lot of home runs, and yet he has a 5.08 ERA at home since 2020, including a 5.55 mark in 2022. Clearly, even without allowing a ton of homers, Freeland frequently gets rocked. The Padres can handle that.
Machado has an .854 OPS over the last four seasons as a Padre, and that's with half his games being at Petco Park. This year, he has an .895 OPS on the road. Whatever team he's been on, Drury has been teeing off on lefties. He has a .961 OPS versus southpaws this year and a .900 OPS in those matchups since 2020. Soto may be a lefty, but since 2020 he has an .850 OPS versus his fellow southpaws. Freeland, meanwhile, has let lefties hit .297 against him in that same time frame.
Angels at Twins (Dylan Bundy): Shohei Ohtani ($23), Mike Trout ($22), Taylor Ward ($16)
It's a pricey stack, to be sure, but a worthwhile one. Bundy was an Angel last season and posted a 6.06 ERA. This year he's been better, but he still has a 4.78 ERA. While on the year Bundy has been better at home, he has a 5.56 ERA across his last five home starts. It's a good time for the Angels to be catching him.
Ohtani has 34 home runs and 11 stolen bases in his follow-up to his MVP campaign, which might win him a second one. Furthermore, he has a .933 OPS against right-handed pitchers. Trout seems likely to have a slugging percentage over .600 for the sixth-straight season. He also has an 1.024 OPS and eight home runs over the last three weeks. Ward is a righty like Trout, but his .835 OPS against right-handers is better than his numbers against southpaws. On the flip side, Bundy's .276 average allowed to his fellow righties is better than his average allowed against lefties.
Braves at Phillies (Kyle Gibson): Michael Harris ($19), William Contreras ($16), Matt Olson ($9)
Gibson's first full season as a Phillies pitcher has been a regrettable one for him. He's posted a 4.71 ERA, and recently things have been even worse. Over his last 11 starts, Gibson has a 5.31 ERA. Righties and lefties both hit him well, so it's hard to go wrong with this stack.
Harris is a rookie hitting .306 with 19 homers and 18 stolen bases. If that wasn't enough, he has a .962 OPS versus righties and a .963 OPS on the road. Contreras is a catcher with enough bat skills that he gets to DH. He's slashed .279/.349/.519 with 20 home runs. Olson has been cold, but he has 28 home runs, 91 RBI, and 77 runs scored. Maybe what he needs is a matchup with a guy like Gibson. Olson has been better versus righties and on the road in 2022.