I’d be lying if I said that I planned on writing for the postseason. However, it’s been a #weird season and that’s given way to a #weird playoff format. We have a whopping eight games today, and a slate that size deserves the full Starting Rotation treatment. We have a ton of interesting arms on the slate and plenty of aces to sort through. Let’s get right after this enormous playoff slate with a full MLB DFS: Starting Rotation 9.30 and get ready to kill it today/tonight!
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Pitch Data – FB – 13th CB – 5th
Of all the arms on the slate today, Glasnow has the highest total K rate at 38.2%. His swinging strike rate is 14% which is easily a career high mark. Both the fly ball and hard hit rates are under 40% and if you’ve been reading this all year, you know that he’s been somewhat unlucky this year. His 4.08 ERA does not match the 2.75 xFIP nor the 3.66 FIP so there’s still potential for better.
Some of the bad luck lies in his 1.73 HR/9 and that’s far above his career mark of 1.29. Glasnow is fairly even to both sides of the plate as far as K rate and wOBA. The slight concern is the 2.45 HR/9 to RHH, which the Blue Jays do have a good bit. You can point to the pitch data not being great, but these aren’t the typical fastballs and curveballs. Even though the Jays don’t K a lot at under 22%, Glasnow is just different. Somehow, he doesn’t have a start against Toronto this season but I believe he puts the Jays away in this game.
Pitch Data – FB – 24th CT – 29th CB – 21st SL – 18th
Buehler has been anything but a cash pitcher all season, but if he can’t get it done in this spot, I’m out of answers. We’ve hammered the Brewers all season long with righty pitching since they have the highest K rate among playoff teams and that’s only because Detroit didn’t make the field. They are 24th or worse in OBP, slugging, OPS, wOBA and wRC+. The ISO makes it all the way up to 19th and the pitch data really favors Beuhler here as well. He uses the fastball or cutter almost 75% of the time and Milwaukee has been brutal against those pitches.
Much like Glasnow, the home run ball has bit him this season. Through 36.2 IP, he’s got a1.72 HR/9 against his career mark of 0.72. The K rate overall ended at 28.6% which is more than respectable and slightly under his career 31.9% mark. The odd part is his swinging strike rate is 12.3% which is the highest he’s recorded. I don’t love the fly ball rate of 41.9% but the hard hit rate of 25.8% mitigates that. Also, the Brewers are just 13th in fly ball rate to RHP. The only knock other than inconsistency is the pitch count. He hasn’t been above 71 in a game since late August. Reportedly, he threw 90 in a simulated game. If the Dodgers unleash him, the ceiling is 30+ DK points.
Max Fried – The Reds were 25th in wOBA to LHP, 26th in OPS and 28th in OBP. They do sport a top 12 ISO but combine it with a top 10 K rate of 24%. Fried is uber talented and had a 22.3% K rate with a 0.32 HR/9, tied for fifth-best among any starter in the field. Injuries led to some consistency issues, but $8,000 could be a cheap way to a big performance if fitting in big bats.
Chris Bassitt – He doesn’t have the greatest chance to match the K potential that the other arms posses but he’s lights out at home. Over 37.1 IP, he has a 0.72 ERA, .231 wOBA and a 1.02 WHIP. Even RHH have a .236 wOBA against him and Chicago does whiff 26.2% against RHP, the third-highest rate in the field.
Pitch Data – FB – 1st CT – 1st SL – 15th CB – 3rd
I won’t say you’re wrong if you decide to play Bauer in cash, but I do believe he has the clear worst matchup of the main two I’ll be using. The Braves were mid-pack through the season in K rate at 23.6% but Bauer is only off of Glasnow’s K rate by 2.2%. It’s not a sterling matchup for the pitch data either with the Braves being the best team against the fastball/cutter mix, 64% of Bauer’s pitches. The righty has also survived a 47.8% fly ball rate all year and the Braves were fourth in fly ball rate to RHP.
Bauer has held RHH to just a 0.26 HR/9, which is sparkling to say the least. Lefties have a 1.89 HR/9 (Freddie Freeman one-off) but they whiff at the higher rate, over 37%. Atlanta was top two in average, slugging, OBP, OPS, ISO, wOBA and wRC+ against RHP this season. There’s risk for Bauer, but he is MORE than capable of turning in a 30 DK point start.
Pitch Data – FB – 17th CB – 15th CH – 9th
The righty for the Astros is the ultimate GPP play for MLB DFS: Starting Rotation 9.30. He did throw 61 pitches on Saturday, but was kept on that count to pitch in this game. Can he go 100 deep? Maybe not but the price doesn’t really require that. If the Twins stick with the same lineup, they’ll have five LHH in it and that’s a plus for McCullers. He’s held them to a .281 wOBA overall with a 28.8% K rate. The Twins as a team whiff at the sixth-highest rate in the field, 25.5%.
McCullers does have some serious risk. When he’s been on the road this year, he’s gotten hammered to the tune of a 7.33 ERA with a .401 wOBA and a 1.54 HR/9. At his point, the Twins have to be feeling pretty tight with their postseason history. It has not gone well recently at all and that could play into an advantage for McCullers. The fears are the road splits and the pitch count. Houston has a rested bullpen for this one since they only used Framber Valdez yesterday. McCullers is only if you’re playing a few lineups.
Hyun Jin-Ryu – The Rays are a feast or famine team against lefties. They are top 10 in ISO, OPS, wOBA and wRC+ but they whiff at the highest rate in baseball at 28.5%. Ryu posted a 26.2% K rate and a .286 wOBA to RHH.
I like the very first game of the day for our Counting K’s game on MKF. Even if there’s a few runs, you have talented pitchers and some decent K rates for the teams floating around. The 14.5 mark is my favorite, but as always be smart with the bankroll. Remember go to Monkey Knife Fight and use promo code WINDAILY to get a $50 matching bonus and 3 month FREE to Win Daily Sports!
Let’s get after it today my friends!
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