We hit the nail on the head with a few of our DraftKings MLB DFS Picks last night, however our Rockies stack didn’t prevail while right-hander Antonio Senzatela didn’t deliver a whole lot of value despite his tiny price.
Dodgers left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu continued his masterful season as he dominated the helpless Braves with seven innings of shutout baseball while walking zero and striking out eight. Thanks to some early run support, Ryu was able to cruise to victory in an eventual 6-0 Dodgers Game 1 win.
Senzatela was actually not bad in his outing at all, just not from a fantasy perspective. He pitched five innings of two-run ball with the lone damage coming off a two-run homer from the white-hot Christian Yelich. That said, he struck out just one and did not earn a win, so it was tough to call this outing a success from a DFS point of view.
Our Dodgers stack was a success right off the get go as Joc Pederson led of the NLDS with a home run. An inning later, Max Muncy clobbered a three-run homer to right-center field to give the Dodgers an early 4-0 lead. We didn’t get anything from catcher Yasmani Grandal while Cody Bellinger notched just a walk, so perhaps the stack wasn’t a complete success.
Our three-man Rockies stack didn’t do much at all with a DJ LeMahieu walk and a Nolan Arenado sac fly accounting for all the damage here.
Lastly, our one-off wild card play Nick Markakis managed to get one of the Braves’ six hits on the night, but he did not eclipse value.
Let’s look for some more consistency throughout the lineup on tonight’s expanded four-game slate!
*This lineup is aimed at GPPs*
P – Corey Kluber (CLE) – $8,600 vs. HOU
Kluber’s Indians are +135 underdogs in the series, and at the moment they are +136 underdogs in Game 1 tonight against Justin Verlander at Houston, hence the GPP note above. That said, Kluber is entering the postseason riding plenty of momentum and I think he can put past postseason woes behind him and deliver some value as a result. He may have given up six earned runs over his last three starts, but that is over a span of 20 innings while he’s struck out 28 over that stretch and went at least seven innings twice. He pitched 13.1 innings of two-run ball to go along with 17 strikeouts in two starts against the Astros this season. We’ve never seen him at this price and I think there’s value to be had with the two-time Cy Young winner tonight.
P – Clayton Kershaw (LAD) – $8,000 vs. ATL
Kershaw’s strikeout rate is down this season, but he’s been real good despite that. In an injury-riddled campaign, Kershaw put together a 2.73 ERA this season while his 3.19 FIP and 3.19 xFIP support that strong season, albeit those figures are not vintage Kershaw. Still, Kershaw has been excellent at home with a 2.58 ERA at Dodger Stadium while he has allowed more than two earned runs just once over his last nine starts at home. Kershaw faced the Braves once this season, in Atlanta, where he hurled 7.2 frames of one-run ball to go along with eight punchouts. The Dodgers are the heaviest favorites on the slate at -225 and the Braves are projected to score a slate-low 2.8 runs tonight, so I am feeling good about Kershaw’s matchup this evening.
C – Gary Sanchez (NYY) – $3,800 vs. BOS
When postseason baseball rolls around you are going to have to use bats against good pitchers, and Sanchez could provide us some nice value against Chris Sale tonight. It isn’t really clear how long Sale will pitch in this one as he hasn’t pitched more than 4.2 innings since coming back from injury across four starts, but he’s also given up five earned runs over his last eight innings and two starts. Enter Sanchez who has scuffled this season, but has still hit lefties for power in the form of huge .289 ISO and .872 OPS on the season while he hit two homers and a double over his last four regular season games. Not bad numbers heading into a sneaky-good matchup.
1B – Luke Voit (NYY) – $4,200 vs. BOS
Voit’s Yankees are projected to score just 3.3 runs as +158 underdogs tonight, but I think they will get to sale. Let’s also not kid ourselves, Voit has been one of the hottest bats in baseball for some time. He came up with a clutch two-run triple in the Yankees’ Wild Card win over the A’s on Wednesday night after homering in three straight games to end the regular season. Over the last 14 days, Voit leads all of baseball with a .558 ISO and .977 SLG while his seven homers in that stretch also paces all of baseball. He’s also hit lefties for a massive .440 ISO and 1.169 OPS this season, so there’s zero hesitation on my part here.
2B – Gleyber Torres (NYY) – $3,900 vs. BOS
We will get our three-man Yankees stack out of the way in short order as Torres simply bashed left-handed pitching to the point where I cannot leave him out of this lineup at a sub-$4k price. Torres produced a monstrous .322 ISO and .912 OPS on the season against southpaw pitching while those numbers improved to an unworldly .375 ISO and .977 OPS on the road against lefties. He homered, doubled and knocked in four runs over his last three regular season games and if he can keep up his lefty-mashing ways tonight, he’s going to give us plenty of value at this attractive price.
3B – Jose Ramirez (CLE) – $4,800 vs. HOU
With Justin Verlander on the mound for the Astros, we are getting some quality prices on some dangerous Indians bats, and we’re going to get them at lower ownership for a change. They are a GPP stack against Verlander, but I think they still have plenty of upside. Ramirez has actually enjoyed plenty of success against Verlander in their history against one another as he’s 11 for 27 (.407) with two homers and three doubles against the Cy Young candidate. He also hit right-hander for a huge .315 ISO and .991 OPS to go along with 34 stolen bases on the year. The cross-category upside remains immense in this matchup tonight.
SS – Francisco Lindor (CLE) – $4,900 vs. HOU
The way the Lindor-Ramirez duo has produced this season I am not going to let Verlander scare me away from their ceilings. Lindor also put together and MVP-type season as he clobbered right-handed pitching for a .243 ISO and .821 OPS while he also stole 18 of his 25 bases this season against right-handers. Just like Ramirez, Lindor has gotten the better of Verlander in their history against each other as he’s gone 10 for 29 (.345) with a homer, a double and a triple against the All-Star. At the top of the order, Lindor possess some serious cross-category upside himself.
OF – Michael Brantley (CLE) – $4,100 vs. HOU
We are getting the top three hitters in the Indians’ projected lineup tonight as Brantley is likely going to hit in the two-hole for tonight’s tilt against the Astros. He might not have the same eye-popping numbers as the two names above him, but I don’t think his .187 ISO and .889 OPS on the season against right-handed pitching is too shabby especially when we factor in the fact he stole 12 bases on the season. Like Ramirez and Lindor, Brantley has also hit Verlander well in the past as he has gone 22 for 76 (.289) with two doubles and a triple to go along with five steals against Verlander. I like the price we are getting Brantley at as part of this stack tonight.
OF – Jason Kipnis (CLE) – $3,500 vs. HOU
We might as well continue the stack with Kipnis as there aren’t many outfielders on this slate at this price. He is projected to hit ninth in the order tonight, meaning he will form a wrap-around stack with the Indians trio above. Kipnis turned things on in the second half of the season as he posted a powerful .190 ISO and .754 OPS since the All-Star break after scuffling to a .138 ISO and .672 OPS in the first half. Kipnis also swiped seven bases off of a right-hander this year and posted a big .247 ISO and .812 OPS in the month of September leading into the playoffs. I’ll take that production at this price any day of the week, especially in a stack.
OF – Steve Pearce (BOS) – $3,900 vs. NYY
The Red Sox will face a lefty tonight in the form of the Yankees’ J.A. Happ, which is good news as Pearce obliterated lefties this season while he’s also hit Yankees pitching for some big-time production as well. Against lefties this season, Pearce mashed for a .255 ISO and .959 OPS while he’s tattooed Yankees pitching for a .967 OPS over the course of his big league career. He also homered in his final regular season game this season, and of course that homer came against the Yankees. Finally, and perhaps best of all, Pearce has brutalized Happ in their history against one another as he’s gone 11 for 32 (.344) with a whopping six home runs and two doubles against his former Blue Jays teammate. I am absolutely loving the value upside here at an attractive sub-$4K price tag.