- Strong winds expected to be blowing out to RF in Texas this afternoon.
Clayton Kershaw: (LAD) @ WAS DK:$12,000/FD:$10,200
Perhaps the greatest pitcher of his generation is constantly disrespected for his inability to perform in the postseason. Kershaw seems to be disrespected by FanDuel as well with this price tag, but at some point, he has to hear the noise about Madison Bumgarner out-doing him in the playoffs, clench his teeth, and toss an absolute gem. I feel as though that dominant outing is coming in Game 1 of the ALDS. The Nationals were bitten by the injury bug late in the season and they had little success against Kershaw (7 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 8 K) when they faced him at much close to full strength. Bryce Harper and Daniel Murphy aren’t healthy, and the Nats simply don’t have the right batters to rally against the best regular season pitcher in baseball, who might get into a groove and never look back.
David Price: (BOS) @ CLE DK:$8,000/FD:$10,100
He’s not particularly cheap on FanDuel, but Price has tremendous upside as the stopper for the Red Sox in a critical Game 2. Like Kershaw, he’s also battled demons in the postseason, but thrives under pressure and should come up big when his team needs it most. It doesn’t hurt that Price is facing a lefty-heavy Indians lineup that managed just 5 H and 2 ER while striking out 10 times in a meeting with the LHP earlier this year. Current Indians are batting a collective .242 in their careers against Price, but have posted a whopping 75 strikeouts (32.3% K-Rate) over that huge sample size. Most of those Ks came against RHB for the Indians, so even if Terry Francona manages to get more batters with the platoon advantage against Price, the southpaw is fully capable of shutting down the Tribe.
Jonathan Lucroy: (TEX) vs. TOR DK: $3,400/FD: $3,300
You might want to go with Buster Posey at $2,800 on FanDuel, but Lucroy is the high-upside option in a RvL matchup with the best price point on DK today. The Rangers will look to bounce back from a blowout loss in Game 1 of this series and they’re capable of rallying against LHP J.A. Happ. The Blue Jays starter put together a great season, but he has a 4.82 ERA over 8 postseason appearances and has only made one start in the playoffs. Texas posted the fourth-best collective average (.273) against LHP this season and Lucroy is a career .295 hitter against the platoon. He happens to be 7-for-19 with 4 doubles against this southpaw and is a quality option in any format today.
Sandy Leon ($2400/$2600) can serve as a punt play on DK, while Buster Posey is a fine value option on FanDuel against LHP Jon Lester.
David Ortiz: (BOS) @ CLE DK:$4,400/FD:$4,000
I’d stick with Papi after the Red Sox came up just short in Cleveland last night. The league’s best offense will look to bounce back this evening against Indians ace Corey Kluber, who has not been the same since suffering a quad injury just over a month ago and didn’t post great splits against Boston when he was healthy this year. Ortiz is only 4-for-16 against the crafty RHP, but he’s launched two homers with a double off Kluber and clearly has immense upside with the platoon advantage in this matchup. Now that he’s over $1K cheaper on DraftKings, he’s worth plugging into lineups in any format.
Ryan Rua ($3300/$2400 as OF on FD) is a great value option at 1B or in the OF, as he’ll almost certainly platoon for the Rangers against LHP J.A. Happ.
Ben Zobrist: (CHC) vs. SF DK:$4,000/FD:$2,900
Woof. This position is tough on a 4-game slate, as almost every top option has a bad matchup and/or has posted terrible numbers against the ace that they’ll be facing today. Zobrist also happens to be 0-for-8 in a limited sample size against Giants RHP Johnny Cueto, but he came into the postseason hot with 3 HR over his last 3 appearances and he’s an absolutely gamer, who should be more than ready to step up now that the games mean a lot. He’s slugged four HR with a .751 OPS over 132 career postseason at-bats and served as an extension for manager Joe Maddon when the Tampa Rays made a run a few years ago. While the public might fear Cueto and the Giants mojo after they took down the Mets two nights ago, rest assured that Maddon and his first-place Cubs will be ready for them at Wrigley.
While Devon Travis ($2900/$3500) has never faced Rangers ace Yu Darvish, he’s capable of producing a tough RvR matchup and is a solid value option on DK.
Kris Bryant: (CHC) vs. SF DK:$4,000/FD:$3,700
There are no easy matchups in the first few games of a playoff series, but I’m going to try and pick on Cueto with a small stack of Cubs hitters on this short slate. Bryant is one of the few Cubs with positive splits (3-for-5) in a limited sample against the Giants RHP, who started to slow down in the second half with a 3.26 ERA and 1.23 WHIP after the ASB. He’s been awful in the postseason with a 5.35 ERA and 2-3 record over 7 starts, while the Cubs elite lineup has been lying in the weeds waiting to play in truly meaningful games. Bryant did plenty of damage with a .239 ISO Mark against RHP this season and he posted even better numbers with a .377 wOBA against righties during his rookie year, so he’s a solid option in this RvR matchup.
Jose Ramirez ($3700/$3200) is a good bet for some level of production against Price and the Red Sox tonight. Adrian Beltre is also an excellent value at FanDuel at $3200.
Corey Seager: (LAD) @ WAS DK:$3,600/FD:$3,600
I might prefer to punt this position on FanDuel, where Seager is still the most expensive option, but he’s a great mid-tier play at this price tag on DK. Clearly the Dodgers most capable hitter this season, the likely Rookie of the Year will have the platoon advantage against Max Scherzer, who coughed up a 1.42 HR/9 ratio with a weak 2.81 K/BB ratio when facing LHB this year. Seager has yet to face the Nationals ace, but he’s a likely candidate if there is one to provide that big hit to potentially put the Dodgers out ahead and let Clayton Kershaw do the rest.
Addison Russell ($2500/$2300) struggled at the end of the regular season, but he could serve as a decent punt play or an addition to a Cubs stack tonight.
Jose Bautista: (TOR) @ TEX DK:$3,800/FD:$3,300
Joey Bats is locked in right now and he’s understandably motivated to slap the Rangers in the face after getting slugged by their starting second baseman earlier this year. He’s 6-for-16 with 3 homers and 6 walks over his last 5 appearances and is under priced despite the tough RvR draw against Yu Darvish tonight. While Darvish is capable of spinning a gem, he’s also imploded in several starts this season, as he’s clearly not fully comfortable in his return from Tommy John surgery. Bautista has really struggled in his career against a healthy Darvish, but consider him a great tournament option given his penchant for late-inning drama in postseason games.
Andrew Benintendi: (BOS) @ CLE DK:$2,400/FD:$2,900
I might prefer Jackie Bradley Jr. at a similar price on FanDuel, but Benintendi is a premier punt play on DK once again tonight. He was the Red Sox most productive hitter last night with a homer and a ninth-inning single to try and spark a comeback effort, and that should earn him another start with the platoon advantage against Kluber. The Indians RHP has allowed a 23% LD Rate when facing lefties this year and Benintendi boasts a .416 wOBA with a 28.6% LD Rate against the platoon during his rookie campaign.
Ezequiel Carrera ($2800/$2500) is worth a look as a punt play in the Blue Jays lineup this afternoon.
Denard Span ($3300/$2800) has decent career splits against Jon Lester and could easily steal a base off the headcase LHP if he reaches.
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