Though Friday features a full slate of games, finding the right pitchers for your fantasy lineups may not be an easy task. After all, there aren’t any bonafide aces scheduled to take the mound — but we’re here to help you sort through all the options.
Below is a look at the three pitchers who figure to provide the best value based on their production and matchup.
Carlos Rodón, LHP
Matchup: vs. Mariners
It’ll be hard to go wrong if you decide to pay up for either Rodón or Framber Valdez — the two highest-priced options on the slate — but the edge here goes to Rodón. The White Sox southpaw has allowed one run or fewer in five of his last six starts, including each of the past three. That stretch includes outings against the Yankees, Blue Jays and Astros — all of whom boast much more potent offenses than the one he will face on Friday. The Mariners not only rank 29th in batting average and dead last in on-base percentage, but they also have the third-highest strikeout rate in the Majors. It’s hard to find a better spot for Rodón, who has racked up 57 strikeouts over 37 innings in his last six starts.
Again, Valdez is also in a great spot, facing a Tigers team that has the highest strikeout rate in mlb. He has a 1.67 ERA in five starts since making his season debut on May 28, but his strikeout totals have fluctutated anywhere from two to 10. Overall, he has 29 K’s in 32 1/3 innings.
Alek Manoah, RHP
Matchup: vs. Orioles
It’ll be interesting to see how this one unfolds after Manoah was ejected from his last outing for plunking Maikel Franco after serving up back-to-back home runs. While that led to the benches clearing and Manoah receiving a five-game suspension, the highly touted Blue Jays prospect appealed that ban and, thus, will face the O’s for the second time in less than a week. Manoah had already served up two homers before allowing the back-to-back jacks in that contest, meaning he gave up four homers in just 3 1/3 innings. He also gave up three home runs in just 3 1/3 frames on June 2 against the Marlins — but he didn’t give up any in his other three outings.
Obviously, Manoah’s susceptibility to the long ball makes him a risky play, but the 6-foot-6 righty has elite stuff. He’s racked up 27 strikeouts in 23 2/3 innings and has allowed one earned run or fewer in three of his five starts. This outing could easily go either way, but expect Manoah to have a little extra motivation when he toes the rubber for this one.
Griffin Canning, LHP
Matchup: vs. Rays
Canning was my pick to have a breakout year in 2021, and while that hasn’t been the case, he has shown flashes. He’s allowed two runs or fewer in seven of his 12 outings, and he’s allowed just three runs over 11 2/3 innings in his past two starts. He’ll now face a Rays offense that ranks in the bottom half of the Majors in batting average, slugging percentage and OPS. More important, Tampa Bay has struck out more than any team in the big leagues. That could bode well for Canning, a pitcher who averages 9.4 strikeouts per nine innings for his career.