If you don't fancy dipping your toe into the vast ocean that is DraftKings' 14-game, all day, contest then the early slot may be the one for you. There are six games to pick from, with the Indians in Milwaukee, Texas hosting Detroit, the Pirates at White Sox, the Marlins playing in Wrigley, the Angels in Coors, and Houston taking on the A's in Oakland.
That selection of games gives enough interesting decisions and windows for profit to be worth its own advice column. So here we go!
Gerrit Cole @ Oakland A's ($13,400)
The ace of the whole day, Cole has been a monster this season. He comes into today with 28 strikeouts in his last two starts. On Friday he one-hit the Diamondbacks in spectacular fashion.
Cole's price tag is heavy. He is $1,900 more than the next pitcher, but he also averages almost twice as many fantasy points as anyone else pitching tonight. If you are willing to skimp elsewhere then he is well worth the risk.
Francisco Liriano @ Texas Rangers ($7,800)
The veteran lefty heads down to Texas with a 2.97 ERA and a 3-1 record. That is really where the good news stops, because Liriano's peripheral numbers are not that pretty. He has just 26 strikeouts in 36.1 innings and a whopping 16 walks. While his hits are down, his BABIP is at .211, meaning it is just waiting to rubber-band back into the .300's.
However, Texas are a very shaky ball club offensively. They sit 16th in runs scored, but just 22nd in batting average and 27th in on-base. Liriano has a good history of avoiding the long ball, which is what the Rangers rely on. He is a risk to be sure, but the pitcher pickings are slim.
Junior Guerra Vs. Cleveland Indians ($6,300)
Speaking of risks... Junior Guerra is another pitcher with a low ERA (2.33) but a high walk rate (4.0BB/9) that seems set to bite him soon. The good thing is that, much like his successful 2016 campaign, he is keeping the ball in the park, but there is also a slight uptick in strikeouts so far that helps his fantasy points. There are only a handful of awful pitchers that are cheaper than Guerra tonight, and I would be extremely loath to go with the likes of Bartolo Colon or Wei-Yin Chen.
George Springer @ Oakland A's ($4,700)
Springer is on a roll right now. He already has eight hits in this series and is hitting .371 over the last two weeks. Opposing pitcher Daniel Mengden is sitting on a 4.30 ERA so far and has allowed a .256 average against so far. Springer is well priced for his form and opponent, and with the likes of Mike Trout and Charlie Blackmon being effectively priced out today he is about as strong an outfield option as you'll have in this contest.
Jed Lowrie Vs. Houston Astros ($3,600)
Another from the Astros-A's game. Lowrie has hit .333 with two homers over the last two weeks, and is sitting on a .340/.404/.582 slash line so far this year. Facing off against Cole isn't a fun matchup, but there are very few second basemen playing well right now so he is worth the risk, especially at this price.
Travis Shaw Vs. Cleveland Indians ($3,600)
Shaw has had a disappointing start to 2018, with a .230 batting average really hurting traditional fantasy owners. However, a lot of that is simply down to bad BABIP luck. His ISO is right in like with last season and he is not only striking out less but walking more as well. With seven homers already Shaw is still a good bet at third, especially when he comes at a cheaper price than the likes of Jefry Marte and Luis Valbuena.