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Welcome to the Friday edition of the Aces and Bases, where I’ll be going through the top MLB DFS Aces and Stacks on DraftKings and Fanduel. 

Tonight we have a massive 12-game slate of MLB DFS tonight.  Even though we have 24 teams in action tonight, pitching at first glance appears to be limited.  The good news with that is that there will be plenty of bats to go around! 

Let’s dig in and see if we can find some stacks to use today!

MLB DFS Aces – Main

Carlos Rodon vs. Arizona Diamondbacks

We saw a few nights ago what a dominant lefty could do against this Diamondbacks lineup when Kershaw struck out 10 in just 6 innings of work.  While I wouldn’t quite put Rodon and Kershaw in the same category, Rodon is in a stretch right now where he’s pitching great.  Over the last month, Rodon has had a 38% K rate across 20 innings.  He’s reached double-digit K’s in 4 of his last 6 starts. 

Rodon has faced this Diamondbacks team 3 times no...

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Welcome to the Thursday edition of the Aces and Bases, where I’ll be going through the top MLB DFS Aces and Stacks on DraftKings and Fanduel. 

Tonight we have a nice-sized 8-game slate of MLB DFS tonight.  I will more than likely be paying up for both pitchers tonight as there is no clear-cut safe stack. 

Let’s dig in and see if we can find some stacks to use today!

MLB DFS Aces – Main

Justin Verlander vs. Baltimore Orioles

Justin Verlander gets a strong matchup tonight vs. the Baltimore Orioles.  While the Orioles have significantly improved this season, they can still be dominated and that’s what will happen tonight at the hands of Verlander.  Verlander continues to age like a fine wine.  His age 39 season has been one of the best of his career. His ERA is at an all-time low of 1.78 and his HR/9 is the lowest since 2010. 

This is going to be only his second start after a 2-week sting on the IL.  His first start could not hav...

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Today’s edition of Aces and Bases focuses ONLY on FanDuel’s six-game MLB DFS Main Slate for 7:05PM ET, hopefully finding you some green screens!

No major weather concerns, but there’s a game in Coors with an 11.5 point total and two pitchers, one — LHP Kyle Freeland — with 7 BB in 8.0 IP so far this season and the other, visiting lefty SP Cole Irvin — with a .358 career road wOBA. It goes without saying to get exposure to this game, but we’ll give you some other options to consider.

MLB DFS: The Aces

Top MLB DFS Ace: Jacob deGrom ($11,500)

It’s hard to click any other name at SP on FD, even though Kevin Gausman’s last four starts (averaging 52.5 FD points and 9 K per game) have the edge on deGrom’s last four (43.25 FD points and 8 K per game). The Mets ace costs just $300 more than Gausman and boasts a very silly 1.53 xFIP, compared to a still-impressive 3.07 for the Giants RHP. I’ll have shares of both, but deGrom is still deGOAT.

Best GPP Value: Joe Musgrove ($8,300)

He’s much harder to trust than the big dogs, but Muskrat Joe (2.08 ERA, 2.65 xFIP, 11.72 K/9 in 11 starts this season) is a dynamic pitcher who can break a slate. The salary savings allow you to get whatever Coors game stack you want, albeit with a much higher risk. There are definitely signs that regression is coming, as Musgrove’s .212 BABIP is a solid 80 percentage points lower than his career metric (.294), but I’m willing to ride out another start about this pesky DFS darling.

Contrarian GPP Play: Kevin Gausman ($11,200)

Gausman’s numbers are amazing this season, and as discussed earlier in the deGrom writeup, he’s on a helluva run with his K numbers. The Cubs strike out at a 25.2% team rate, a lot more than the Padres (21.1%), so I’m inclined to be overweight on Gausman in GPPs for the additional leverage, as deGrom should still earn more ownership. Again — pricing is pretty soft for some of the high-projected-total games, so the big spend SPs will make up about 90 percent of the ownership.

MLB DFS: The Bases

Top Stack: Colorado Rockies vs. OAK LHP Cole Irvin

The A’s are a fine choice for top spot too, with Mark Canha ($4,200), Matt Chapman ($3,800), Matt Olson ($4,400)and Jed Lowrie ($3,600) being the obvious four-man stack at or near the top of the order. But they are pretty expensive, and they might be tough to fit in some cases with deGrom or Gausman up top. Canha is an impressive hitter who sees the ball well and makes for an amazing leadoff hitter in Coors, so I’ll haver some Colorado stacks that add on him as the primary one-off for OAK, and then find a three-man stack from another game for leverage. For the Rockies, I prefer C.J. Cron ($3,700), Charlie Blackmon ($3,900), Garrett Hampson ($3,300) and Joshua Fuentes ($3,400) against Irvin (who’s given up 24 hits over his last three starts), though there may be some other necessary value plays depending on who starts.

Value Stack: New York Yankees vs. BOS LHP Eduardo Rodriguez

Rodriguez has been very “gettable” in his last three starts, and while the Yankees strike out a lot, Yankee Stadium is getting hot and humid and the wind is blowing out to right center today, aiding some of those power righty bats in the Bronx. There’s loads of value and upside in rostering a three or four-man Yankees stack tonight, with D.J. LeMahieu ($3,000), Aaron Judge ($3,600) and Gleyber Torres ($2,900) as my three favorite “spends” and Gio Urshela ($2,500), Gary Sanchez ($2,400) and Clint Frazier ($2,300) clocking in with serious bargain prices.

Contrarian Stack: Los Angeles Angels vs. SEA LHP Yusei Kikuchi

Kikuchi has been okay in 2021, but he hasn’t been missing as many bats in his last few starts, opening himself up for a possible letdown against the home team Angels and their parade of right-handed power bats, including Justin Upton ($3,000), Anthony Rendon ($3,200) and Taylor Ward. ($2,600) And there’s obviously Shohei Ohtani ($4,000), whose metrics against LHP are a bit down in ’21. But $2K punts Phil Gosselin ($2,000) and Juan Lagares ($2,000) are in play (if they play) tonight, as Gosselin boasts great numbers vs. LHP (.460 wOBA in 26 AB this season)

Good luck, and make sure you utilize the MLB Projection models to land on your one-offs and off-the-wall value plays!

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Welcome to the Thursday edition of Aces and Bases.  Today we have two 4 game slates to navigate through. 

Both slates today lack obvious pitching options.  They each have 1 ace and then a bunch of blah supporting actors.  If ever there was a day to either sit one out or play light, today’s that day. 

With that being said, let’s dig in to today’s slates!

MLB DFS: The Early Slate “Aces”

The pitching on today’s early slate leaves a lot to be desired.  A case could be made for or against a handful of pitchers

Aaron Nola ($9.9k) vs. St. Louis Cardinals – Nola dominated this same team a couple of weeks ago w/ 10 k’s and a CG SO.  Does that happen again today?  Doubtful.  But the Cardinals are a pretty right handed dominant lineup and righties are a “weakness” for them.  They have a 26% k rate vs. righties this year and a wOBA of only .291.  While I don’t think Nola has a game like he had last time out vs. this team, I do think he pitches well enough to bring some value to his salary.

Jordan Montgomery ($8.1k) vs. Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles have a 27% k rate vs. lefties this season and only a .148 ISO.  Montgomery was successful against the Orioles earlier this month and I don’t see any reason why he shouldn’t be again today.  The one thing that is giving me caution with Montgomery is that he’s giving up a ton of hard contact this season.  To the tune of 35.7% .  Highest of any pitcher on the slate.  Tread lightly with this one..

Kwang-hyun Kim ($7.5k) vs. Philadelphia Phillies – Guess we have ourselves a pitcher’s duel in St. Louis today.  Kim showed some serious upside last week with  8 k’s in only 5 innings vs. the Reds, while limiting them to only 1 run.  There’s a small sample size on Kim this year but so far he’s pitched to a 2.82 xfip with a 14.4% SSR.  The Phillies are k’ing 29% of the time vs. lefties this season.  Kim’s ability to miss bats + the Phillies k’ing a ton vs. lefties could equal a nice success story.  Similar to Montgomery though, the contact that he’s giving up tends to be hard contact.  33% for the year.  Tread lightly with this one too…

MLB DFS: The Early Slate Bats

New York Yankees vs. Jorge Lopez – Could the Yankees be heating up?  They’ve scored 12 runs over the last 2 games.  And they get to face a pitcher today that’s already given up 6 homers in only 17 innings.  Over the past week some of the Yankees bats are really hot.  Giancarlo Stanton ($3.4k) and Aaron Judge ($3.5k) both have wOBA’s over .400 in the past week and wRC’s over 5.  1-4 in this lineup should be popular this afternoon

Houston Astros vs. Yusei Kikuchi – If for some reason you are fading the Yankees today, the Astros present a good secondary option.  Kikuchi hasn’t been missing bats.  He has a 10.9% swinging strike rate which is second lowest on the slate.  Second only to Lopez.  He’s also given up 5 homers in only 23 innings of work. His 2 main pitches are the fastball and slider.  I’m going to focus on the Astros success vs. the slider.  Jose Altuve ($3.8k) and Alex Bregman ($3.6k) both have hard hit rates greater than 50% vs. this pitch and ISO’s over .230.  Both of those guys will be main targets for me.   

This is an ugly day slate.  I anticipate value opening up today so make sure to keep an eye on lineups. 

MLB DFS: The Main Slate Ace

Trevor Bauer ($11k) vs. Milwaukee Brewers – Bauer will be chalk tonight.  On some nights, you just need to eat because there’s either no other option, or limited options.  Tonight is the night to eat the chalk.  Bauer is far and away the best pitcher on the slate with a matchup against a team that has a 27% k rate against his handedness.  Really don’t need to dig in much to this one.

Kyle Gibson ($9.2k) vs. Boston Red Sox – If you take out his first game of the season, Gibson has been one of the better pitchers in the game.  He’s only given up 2 ER in his last 27 IP.  While is xFIP is more than a run higher than his ERA, it’s still very respectable at 3.67.  The majority of the power from the Red Sox comes from the right side of the plate.  Gibson’s main pitch to righties is his sinker and the throws it nearly 44% of the time.  Martinez, Bogaerts, and Hernandez all have low ISO’s vs. this pitch.  When you switch to the left side, one of his main pitches is the changeup.  Only Devers profiles well against this pitch.  I could see Gibson continuing his solid performance tonight.

These are really the only 2 pitchers I’m considering tonight.   The only other person I’d even remotely consider is Martin Perez ($6K) vs. the Texas Rangers. 

MLB DFS: The Main Slate Bats

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Eric Lauer – Lauer makes his season debut today.  Because of that, I don’t think he goes very deep.  The good news for us?  On the season, the Brewers bullpen has a 4.52 xfip.  So we’d be going with a pitcher who had a 4.92 xfip from 2019-2020 to a bullpen that has struggled this year.  The current lineup of the Dodgers has a .202 ISO and a .327 wOBA over the last couple of season to lefties.  Betts ($4.4k)Seagar ($3.9k)Turner ($4k), and Smith ($3.2k) all have wOBA’s over .300 vs. lefties since 2019.  Love the spot here for the Dodgers.

Atlanta Braves vs. Adbert Alzolay – Alzolay hasn’t pitched as bad as his ERA looks.  His xFIP is a full 2 runs lower than his ERA.  This is just a bad matchup for him tonight.  His main pitch is his 94 mph fastball.  Let’s look at what the Braves hitters have done to this pitch if we look back all the way to 2016.  Ronald Acuna ($4.3k) .289 ISO and a 57.5% hard hit rate, Freddie Freeman ($4k) .221 ISO and 51.72% hard hit rate, Marcell Ozuna ($2.6k) .269 ISO and 45.24% hard hit rate, and Ozzie Albies ($3k) .391 ISO and 48.28% hard hit rate.  The backend of that stack is cheap. 

MLB DFS: The Main Slate Wrap Up

Like pitching, I really only have 2 spots I’m in love with the hitting matchup.  This too is an ugly slate and I’m already looking forward to tomorrow’s slate.  Play light, play wise, good luck!

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Pitchers and catchers! My favorite three word sentence has finally arrived along with thoughts of springtime. Baseball season is coming closer, so this would be a great time to look at future bets for the AL MVP Race and NL MVP Race we can sweat out with each other all season.

AL MVP Race:

The AL MVP Race is Mike Trout vs. the world, with the departure of Mookie Betts to the Dodgers. Trout currently sits at +150 with Aaron Judge and Francisco Lindor each at +1000. Even with Mike Trout being the clear favorite for the foreseeable future, there isn’t enough of an upside to betting on him. I personally wouldn’t put my money on Judge or Lindor either. Judge may be coming for that 2017 AL MVP trophy, but he’s been hurt the last two years and hasn’t been able to find the magic he had in his rookie season. I wouldn’t be surprised if he misses some time again this year. I also think Lindor has a great shot at being traded at the deadline so Cleveland can make sure they aren’t in the situation the Red Sox were in this offseason. 

My play here is Gleyber Torres at +4000. He’s moving over to shortstop, a significant step up in defensive importance, which will be looked at with wide eyes by baseball writers. The Yankees also lost a significant amount of players to injury last year, but Judge, Stanton, and Sanchez have a chance to miss time again. If those guys all miss time and Torres stays healthy, a 40 home run season on a 110 win team might be enough to win MVP honors. Don’t forget that even though Trout has all these MVPs, he has missed some important time the last few seasons as well, allowing another player a chance to swipe his crown. Is there some strange stat about how Trout has missed many games in a season but still wins or is top 3 in voting for the MVP. 

An even longer shot for the AL MVP that is deserving of a look could be Gary Sanchez at +10000. For many of the same reasons as Torres winning, Sanchez could have the same opportunity. It’s usually difficult for a not-so-great defensive catcher/DH to win, but if everyone else on the Yankees is hurt and he carries them, there’s a chance.

NL MVP Race:

The NL MVP Race should be much more interesting, assuming everyone stays healthy. Currently the 2018 AL MVP, Mookie Betts, has the best odds to take home the NL MVP title at +550. He is followed by Cody Bellinger (+700), Christian Yelich (+700), and Juan Soto (+1000). With three MVP winners in Betts, Bellinger, and Yelich all in the same race this one would be enjoyable just to sit back and watch, but throwing around some money on it peaks my interest. 

I’m not looking to take either of the Dodgers because two guys that good on the same team will usually have a way of “splitting” votes. If one does get hurt and misses some time, the other is almost a lock for an uptick in votes, helping both of their cases. Yelich seems to have a great shot at the title each year but with missing time last year, he missed out on winning. I also think Soto is incredible, but I think +1000 isn’t enough. He’s riding high off that playoff run and I think the public will assume he does that for the entire season. Anthony Rendon won’t be in that lineup anymore, allowing more pitchers to go right around Soto and face a lesser threat on the Nationals.

The player I’m looking at for the NL MVP is Ronald Acuna Jr. at +1200. His odds will pay out a bit more than Soto, but I think he has a betting chance of winning the award. He came very close to the first 40/40 season since Alfonso Soriano in 2006, missing the feat by 3 stolen bases. He led the NL in runs and plate appearances last season and will have a great chance to do that again in 2020. The Braves have a great shot at repeating at the NL East champs, putting him on a winning team which (usually) helps. Let’s also not forget he’s patrolling center field and has a great glove, another reason to bump that WAR up. With that 40/40 season as close as it was last year, I wouldn’t be surprised if he makes a significant run at it this year, so make sure if you’re drafting in the top 2 of your fantasy baseball league to snag him. 

An outside shot for the NL MVP to look at is Pete Alonso at +4000. If the Mets win the NL East and Alonso does what he did last year, he could absolutely be considered. 

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The 10/19 DFS picks for MLB at Win Daily Sports are ready, as the Yankees forced a Game 6 in the ALCS and hopped the first flight back to Houston

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10/19 DFS MLB: DK Showdown(8:08 p.m. EST)

10/19 DFSSP Strategy and Picks

The only pitcher I’ll have more than 10 percent exposure to herewill be Jose Urquidy, who ha a shot at pitching 2-3 innings of high-strikeout actionagainst a Yankees team that can pile up Ks and just had to fly back to Houston.Urquidy has 4 Ks in 1.2 IP of postseason action and finished the regular seasonwith a 24% K rate. He’s an option, I don’t like the Yankees options facing anAstros team that’s going to have great ABs.

Let’s move on to the hitters. That’s what we’re doing on FanDuelanyway – where our first sample lineup from 10/18 performed quite well.

10/19 DFS Hitters

The top hitter picks for the 10/19 DFS Showdown are going to bepretty balanced, leaning toward the Astros, especially without much worry aboutforcing in pitchers. Unfortunately, all the pricing for hitters is up and verytight – since we have no aces on the mound.

10/19 DFS New York Yankeesbats

Gleyber Torres (DK $14,400/$9,600)

Just one hit (a double) last night, but he’s got an excellent plate approach with the requisite kind of discipline that leads to production in key spots. None of the Yankees have faced Urquidy before, so I trust approach as much as anything here. I’m going right back to the well even though the price is up a tad.

DJ LeMahieu (DK $15,600/$10,400)

The ownership will be higher, but so is the price (higher than JoseAltuve!) – so I’m going to build a few lineups with Torres, LeMahieu and avalue Yankees bat, with a balanced group of Astros I like. Yesterday’s leadoffbomb may have been a Yankee Stadium special, but LeMahieu is aggressive at theplate and has excellent protection in the lineup, which coming back around sometimesprovides him ample baserunners to knock in a few (107 RBI in 2019). I might belower owned than last night, but he’s still part of my core build.

Gary Sanchez (DK $10,800/$7,200)

The price shot upbecause of the lag from Game 4’s HR, but I’m not off Gary. Hitters like thisneed to bust through their bad stints, and this certainly is a park where hehas an advantage, as the HR Park Factor for away RHBs was 156 for Minute Maidin 2019. If he’s in the lineup, I’m using him.

Aaron Hicks (DK $9,900/$6,600) and Aaron Judge ($13,800/$9,200)

The Aarons will be popular, and while I like them both in this matchup, the prices are also much higher. I’ll be around 20-40 percent ownership for both of them but they’re not core builds because of ownership (Hicks) and the price jump (Judge).

Otheroptions: Didi Gregorius (DK $8,100/$5400), Brett Gardner (DK $11,100/$7,400)

10/19 DFS Houston Astrosbats

Alex Bregman (DK $16,200/$10,800)

You can only avoid Bregman’sbat for so long, and he hit some balls on the screws last night that were rightat guys. He’s going to avoid high ownership because of the price, and he’s probablygoing to get a couple ABs against J.A. Happ tonight. The entire Houston lineupbrutalizes Happ, and I want the ringleaders (Bregman, Altuve and Yordan Alvarez)in as many lineups as they’ll fit.

George Springer (DK $15,900/$10,600) andCarlos Correa ($12,600/$8,400)

My outlook on both of these guys is similar – I’m going to beusing them together in stacks with Bregman and Altuve when possible, but mostlygrabbing one or the other. Springer makes more sense as a cash game play thanCorrea, who I like better for GPPs, even with Correa’s price staying the same.

JoseAltuve (DK $15,300/$10,200)

Altuve is itching for another breakout like he in Game 3, and he’sa much better hitter at home (.306/.372/.608 slash this season at home). I’llhave more shares than last night in GPPs, especially since the salary didn’tjump much.

Other10/18 DFS options: Martin Maldonado ($5,400/$3,600) Michael Brantley (DK $11,400/$7,600),Yordan Alvarez ($14,100/$9,400)


Sample DK Showdown Lineup (Yankees heavy):

Captain (1.5x) – G. Sanchez (10,800)

UTIL – A. Hicks ($6,600)

UTIL – Brantley ($7,600)

UTIL – Torres ($9,600)

UTIL – Gregorius ($6,200)

UTIL – Judge ($9,200)

SampleDK Showdown Lineup (Astros heavy)

Captain (1.5x) – Jose Altuve ($15,300)

UTIL – Correa ($8,400)

UTIL – Hicks ($6,600)

UTIL – J. Urquidy ($8,200)

UTIL – Brantley ($7,600)

UTIL – Maldonado ($3,600)

SampleDK Showdown Lineup (Balanced w/just bats for both teams):

Captain (1.5x) – Torres ($14,400)

UTIL – Correa ($8,400)

UTIL – Brantley ($7,600)

UTIL – Hicks ($6,600)

UTIL – Judge ($9,200)

UTIL – Maldonado ($3,600)

10/19 DFS Hitters for FDSingle-game

The prices haven’t changed much so we can tackle this similarly tolast night, though I’ll be using more Astros. I was very Yankees-heavy lastnight and it worked out.

SampleFD lineup (Yankees heavy, $500 left):

MVP (2x) – Torres ($6,500)

All-Star (1.5x) – Judge ($7,500)

UTIL – Altuve ($9,000)

UTIL – Hicks ($4,500)

UTIL – LeMahieu ($7,000)

SampleFD lineup (Astros heavy — $0 left):

MVP (2x) – Bregman ($8,500)

All-Star (1.5x) – Correa ($8,000)

UTIL – Hicks ($4,500)

UTIL – Alvarez ($7,000)

UTIL – LeMahieu ($7,000)

SampleFD lineup (Balanced – $500 left):

MVP (2x) – Judge ($7,500)

All-Star (1.5x) – Bregman ($8,500)

UTIL – Sanchez ($6,000)

UTIL – Correa ($8,000)

UTIL – Hicks ($4,500)

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Aaron Judge (+0.5), Jose Altuve (+0.5) and Gleyber Torres (+0.5)

I prefer Judge because he’s just as much of a threat to score as Springer and benfits from more RBI chances because of the Yankees 9 and 1 hitters.

Altuve is my pick because Yankee pitchers have been less careful with him than Bregman, who they’ve been staying away from. I really like the +0.5 here too,

I can’t rely at all on Stanton, and Torres is my guy. Let’s take it down!!!

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With the Astros up 3-1, the Yankees are on the brink of elimination in the ALCS. We’ve got your 10/18 DFS picks for the featured Showdown contests.

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10/18 DFS MLB: DK Showdown(7:08 p.m. EST)

10/18 DFS SP Strategy and Picks

Astros ace JustinVerlander has the edge in upside and in most scenarios will go deeper into thisgame than Yankees LHP James Paxton – though the Yankees have a slight edge in theimplied totals. You don’t need both pitchers in this one, and I’ll likely have someexposure to both starters, even with Paxton considerably cheaper.

Justin Verlander (DK $18,000 CPT, $12,000UTIL)

There’s always the possibility that Verlander throws one of his trademark gems against the Bronx Bombers on their home turf, but the righthander’s vulnerability to the long ball makes him a risky option at such a high price. The veteran hurler – a future Hall of Famer who’s posted the highest K/9 rates of his entire 15-year career in 2018 (12.20 K/9) and 2019 (12.11 K/9) – has struggled a bit this postseason but struck out 12 batters in six innings as recently as Sept. 28. If you’re building Verlander lineups with him at Captain, the implication is that you’ll be fading Yankee bats, so you’ll probably need to employ some creativity if you also want the big Houston bats.

James Paxton (DK $12,900 CPT, $8,900 UTIL)

The price is right, and the upside is there, but Paxton hasn’tgiven us his best so far this postseason. He has, however, struck out 11batters in 7 IP, and although the Astros don’t whiff all that often, they’lllikely come out aggressive at the plate with a 3-1 lead in the series. IfPaxton’s stuff is on point, he could easily post double-digit Ks over 5-6innings of work.

10/18 DFS Hitters

Who’s going to be the hero of Game 5, if not one of the startingpitchers? Here are my top hitter picks for the 10/18 DFS Showdown.

10/18 DFS New York Yankees bats

Gleyber Torres (DK $12,300/$8,200))

If he’d come up big with the bases loaded against Ryan Pressly in the fifth inning last night, he’d probably be the odds-on favorite for World Series MVP heading into Game 5, but the 22-year-old is still looking to bolster his batting resume with a standout performance in Yankee Stadium. He’s still slashing .345/.406/.793 this postseason, with the only knock being his relatively futility against Verlander thus far (1-for-12 with 5 Ks).

DJ LeMahieu (DK $13,500/$9,000)

Torres hasn’t had much success against Verlander, but LeMahieuis 5-for-15 career with a homer and just two Ks. He’s got Aaron Judge hitting rightbehind him and should get some pitches to hit as the Yankees leadoff hitter onFriday night.

Gary Sanchez (DK $7,800/$5,200)

He parked one into the left field stands last night and is massively underpriced – even in this difficult matchup against Verlander, who has owned him (2-for-19, 5 Ks). Gary is still pretty scary, though, and he’ll be a chalky value play in this Showdown. It’ll be interesting to see if Aaron Boone moves him up a little further in the lineup tonight.

Other options: Didi Gregorius (DK $8,100/$5400), Aaron Judge ($11,400/$7,600), Aaron Hicks ($8,400/$5,600)

10/18 DFS Houston Astros bats

George Springer (DK $14,100/$9,400)

Last night’s homer – Springer’s 13th career postseason HR in 166 at-bats – was a powerful statementby the leadoff man that he’s ready for another big night in Game 5, and hismatchup against Paxton and subsequent relievers should give him plenty of chancesto make his mark. The price is high, but he’ll be the main Astros hitter I havein my builds.

Carlos Correa ($12,600/$8,400)

Like Springer, Correa hit his second homer of the postseasonand the 10th of his postseason career. Springer and Correa form quitethe power tandem, as that was sixth time those two have homered in the samegame in the postseason – an all-time MLB record, according to a tweet by STATS.Correa has good numbers vs. LHP (138 career wRC+, .371 wOBA) and Paxton in particular(9-for-22 career).

Jose Altuve (DK $15,000/$10,000)

It’ll be tough to fit in Altuve at the Captain spot, but he’scertainly viable in Astros-heavy lineups that fade Verlander. He’s slashing.351/.385/.730 this postseason with four homers and seven runs scored in just39 plate appearances.

Other 10/18 DFS options: Michael Brantley (DK $10,200/$6,800), Alex Bregman (DK $14,700/$9,800), Yordan Alvarez ($13,800/$9,200), Martin Maldonado ($6,000/$4,000)

Note: Robinson Chirinos may sit after he got banged up last night behind the plate, so stay tuned to who’s donning the “tools of ignorance” for Houston tonight.

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Sample DK Showdown Lineup (Yankees heavy):

Captain (1.5x) – G. Torres ($12,300)

UTIL – J. Paxton ($8,600)

UTIL – LeMahieu ($9,000)

UTIL – Gregorius ($5,400)

UTIL – Sanchez ($5,200)

UTIL – Springer ($9,400)

Sample DK Showdown Lineup (Astros heavy w/Verlander):

Captain (1.5x) – Verlander ($18,000)

UTIL – Correa ($8,400)

UTIL – Reddick ($4,800)

UTIL – Springer ($9,400)

UTIL – Sanchez ($5,200)

UTIL – Maldonado ($4,000)

Sample DK Showdown Lineup (Astros heavy w/justbats for both teams):

Captain (1.5x) – Springer ($14,100)

UTIL – Correa ($8,400)

UTIL – Brantley ($6,800)

UTIL – Gregorius ($5,400)

UTIL – Sanchez ($5,200)

UTIL – Altuve ($10,000)

10/18 DFS Hitters for FDSingle-game

Without pitchers in the player pool, there’s a need for evenmore variance in your lineup building. Try to leave a few bucks on the table inthe larger contests and don’t worry about having the most expensive player inthe MVP slot.

Sample FD lineup (Yankees heavy – $500 left):

MVP (2x) – LeMahieu ($7,500)

All-Star (1.5x) – Springer ($9,000)

UTIL – Alvarez ($6,500)

UTIL – Torres ($7,000)

UTIL – Hicks ($4,500)

Sample FD lineup (Astros heavy — $0 left):

MVP (2x) – Springer ($9,000)

All-Star (1.5x) – Altuve ($9,500)

UTIL – Maldonado ($4,000)

UTIL – Sanchez ($5,500)

UTIL – Brantley ($7,000)

Sample FD lineup (Balanced – $1,000 left):

MVP (2x) – Correa ($7,500)

All-Star (1.5x) – LeMahieu ($7,500)

UTIL – Sanchez ($5,500)

UTIL – Torres ($7,000)

UTIL – Alvarez ($6,500)

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Justin Verlander Under 7.5 Strikeouts & James Paxton Over 4.5 Strikeouts (3x WIN)

Verlander would normally be a pretty safe bet to reach eight Ks, but the more the Yankees see of the veteran, the more they’ll provide excellent ABs. I expect Verlander to challenge hitters in Game 5 and as a result, there will be more balls put in play early in counts.

We’re also counting on Paxton giving us his best stuff. As I mentioned before, he’s whiffed 11 batters in 7 IP this postseason, and I expect him to go a little deeper into this game than he did in Game 2.

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It’s 10/13 DFS and we’ve got another ALCS game on tap tonight – let’s get right to the MLB picks for the Showdown contest on DraftKings.

10/13 DFS DK Showdown

The game: New York Yankees at Houston Astros (8:08 p.m. EST)

General strategy: Justin Verlander is super expensive, and theYankees hitters looked good last night in just about all their ABS against Greinke,so I don’t think I’ll be using JV much at all in my DK builds. I’m primarilyconcerned with using Paxton as contrarian and getting Gleyber Torres and DidiGregorius in all my lineups.

10/13 DFS Showdown – Captain Spot

Pitchers: Using Paxton or Verlander at the top spot makesit tough to get in decent bats from either side, so that’s not my preferred routehere.

CPT Option1: Didi Gregorius ($9,600)

Didi hasfour hits in his last seven ABs including a home run, and he’s driven in sixruns during that two-game span. He’s inexpensive and using him at CPT gives youflexibility at the UTIL spots.

CPT  Option 2: DJ LeMahieu ($14,100)

If you’re looking for a contrarian CPT play on the Yankees who’s not intimidated by Verlander, consider LeMahieu – who’s electric in the leadoff spot and has all kinds of upside. The price is a little high but if he’s not my CPT, he’s in one of my UTIL spots.

10/13 DFSShowdown – Utility Options

Big spends: Alex Bregman ($10,400) and Jose Altuve ($9,800)

Pick yourpoison here. Both Bregman and Altuve are proven postseason performers and theypile up the extra base hits. They’re a combined 17-for-58 off Paxton, thoughAltuive has taken him deep twice in 30 AB. I’ll have exposure to one or both.

Big Spend Pivots: Aaron Judge ($8,600) or George Springer ($10,000)

Mid-range 1: Aledmys Diaz ($7,400) – He may get the start versus Paxton.

Mid-range 2: Gleyber Torres ($7,600) – The price hasn’t caught up to his tear at the dish.

Value 1: Brett Gardner ($7,000) – Fierce ABs and plenty of upside.

Value 2: Gio Urshela ($5,600) – Another talented player who’s often under the radar.

GPP punts: Martin Maldonado ($4,000)

Sample 10/13 DFS DK Showdown Lineup

CPT  (1.5x) – D. Gregorius ($9,600)

UTIL – J.Altuve

UTIL – DJ LeMahieu

UTIL – J.Paxton

UTIL – G.Torres

UTIL – M. Maldonado

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It’s a busy Monday in the MLB postseason, so let’s jump right into the 10/7 DFS picks for the four-game slate and the featured Showdown contests on DraftKings.

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The games: Houston Astros at Tampa Bay Rays (1:05 p.m. EST), Atlanta Braves at St. Louis Cardinals (3:07 p.m.), Los Angeles Dodgers at Washington Nationals (6:40 p.m.) and New York Yankees at Minnesota Twins (8:40 p.m. EST)

SP Strategy and Picks

There should be enough value in the bats to allow us to use my two favorite pitchers in this slate.

SP1: Luis Severino (DK $8,600, FD $8,400)

It’s been about a year since Severino took the mound in theplayoffs, the last time a disastrous outing against the Red Sox in which he gaveup six runs in three-plus innings in the ALDS, but this is his redemption tour.He’s been electric (12.75 K/9, 2.13 FIP) since returning from injury and shouldbe fresh, last pitching in a three-inning,72-pitch outing against the Rangers on Sept. 28. Sevy is affordable and makesfor a fine SP1 if he can throw about 80-85 pitches.

SP2:Zack Greinke (DK $9,100, FD 10,300)

Greinke was 8-1 with a 3.02 ERA in 10 starts after beingacquired from the D-backs in a July trade, going 18-5 with a 2.93 ERA for the2019 season. He even carried a no-hitter into the ninth inning of his finalregular-season start on Sept. 25 in Seattle and shouldn’t need his best stuffto dispatch this Rays team that’s been struggling at the plate and has animplied run total under 4.

Other options: Dallas Keuchel/Julio Teheran (value), Charlie Morton, Max Scherzer

10/7 DFS Hitters

10/7 DFS C: Brian McCann (DK $3,200, FD$2,600)

He’s cheap and has power upside, with a .343 xWOBA against RHPs over his last two seasons. McCann has plenty of playoff experience and already has a couple hits this series. The Braves are a talented bunch and McCann is a fearless team leader. Pivot: Gary Sanchez

10/7 DFS 1B: Paul Goldschmidt, STL (DK$4,200, FD $3,900)

We’regetting a legendary playoff performer at a huge discount here, and he’s facingthe team with the worst pitching – so that’s a huge reason I’m leaning towardGoldschmidt. He put up somesolid numbers and metrics (145 wRC+ and .313 ISO) this season and is mypreferred 1B on this slate. Pivot: Freddie Freeman

10/7 DFS 2B: D.J. LeMahieu, NYY (DK $4,800,3B on FD $3,900)

I’ve toutedhim before in this column and he’s been awesome thus far in the postaseason,with four hits (three XBH) in nine ABs and a homer and 4 RBI. There are someother folks I want to play at 3B on DK, so plug him in at second base on thatsite and UTIL on FD. Pivot: Max Muncy

10/7 DFS 3B: Anthony Rendon, WAS (DK $4,500,FD $4,300)

Plugging in Alex Bregman here is fine, but Charlie Morton should help to limit the amount of damage the Astros do in this game, so I’m using Rendon against LHP Rich Hill. Rendon has three hits in his last two games and Hill isn’t the dominating force he was in previous seasons. With a .289 ISO against LHPs over his last couple of seasons, Rendon — who was REALLY hot when the season started and could be getting going again — has me stuck on him here. Pivot: Gio Urshela/Josh Donaldson

10/7 DFS SS: Didi Gregorius, NYY (DK $3,900,FD $3,300)

When Didi gets hot, he’s a dangerous hitter, and we get him at a very affordable price. His grand slam in Game Two put the contest out of reach for the Twins and gives Sir Didi the requisite confidence to set aside some of his struggles and produce in this circular Yankees lineup. Pivot: Danby Swanson

10/7 DFS OF: Nick Markakis, ATL (DK $3,500,FD $2,800)

Spending down a little more at the corner infield positions allows you some more expensive OF, but I’ll be looking for some value in my outfield and Markakis is the perfect play at this price. He had a double in Game 1 and sits nicely in the Braves lineup between the dangerous Josh Donaldson and lefty-mashing Matt Joyce. Solid numbers against RHPs (.817 OPS, .387 xWOBA over his last two seasons) clinch it for me. Pivot: Michael Brantley/Max Kepler

10/7 DFS OF: Giancarlo Stanton, NYY (DK $3,900,FD $3,700)

Stanton is hitless in the postseason and is still scoring fantasy points – largely because pitchers are afraid of throwing him anything near the strike zone and hes drawing walks, even with the bases loaded! The big fella is still getting in good ABs and is ready to bust out facing an overmatched Jake Odorizzi. Pivot: Aaron Judge/Eddie Rosario

10/7 DFS OF: Brett Gardner, NYY (DK $4,100,FD $3,000)

Lets go right back to the well with Gardy, who’s been hot at the plate over the past few weeks and offers immense upside in the heart of the Yankees lineup. He gets us just under the salary line at his reasonable price point and will be looking to finish off this series with the help of his lively bat. Pivot: Marwin Gonzalez/Josh Reddick

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10/7 DFS Featured Single-Game (1:05 EST on FD)

Hitters only – so stack up the best Astros bats and look for valuewithin the more pesky Rays. There’s just a lot of ways to go here, but I’lllikely be using a top Astros hitter in my MVP slot.

Sample FD lineup:

MVP (2x) – J. Altuve ($8,500) or Yordan Alvarez ($8,000)

All-Star (1.5x) – A. Bregman ($9,500)

UTIL – T. d’Arnaud ($4,000)

UTIL – Austin Meadows ($7,000) or Yuri Gurriel ($6,500)

UTIL – J. Reddick ($4,500) or Tommy Pham ($6,500)

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10/7 DFS Featured Showdown (8:40 p.m. on DK)

I may fade the pitchers in this game entirely given the probableextensive use of both bullpens. I’m fine using Severino in the classic format,but he might be a little overpriced for Showdown.

Sample DK Showdown Lineup (Balanced w/hitters from both teams)

Captain (1.5x) – D. Gregorius ($10,500)

UTIL – N. Cruz ($10,600) or Aaron Judge ($9,800)

UTIL – E. Rosario ($7,600)

UTIL – M. Kepler ($7,400)

UTIL – G. Stanton ($7,200)

UTIL – G. Urshela ($6,600)

If you’re hell-bent on using Sevy and stacking the best NYY bats,we can go with him at a UTIL spot and use Aroldis Chapman for one of the UTILspots as well.

Sample with Severino at UTIL:

Captain (1.5x) – A. Judge ($14,700)

UTIL – L. Severino ($10,400)

UTIL – D.J. LeMahieu ($9,400)

UTIL – G. Stanton ($7,200)

UTIL – J. Cave ($5,200)

UTIL – A. Chapman ($3,000)

I’d play around with a few different variations at the CPT spot, usingsome inexpensive Yankees bats who are just as likely to come up in big spots asthe more noted sluggers.

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We’re in the heart of the MLB postseason and looking at some 10/5 DFS picks for the two-game slate and featured Showdown on DraftKings (9:07 EST). Let’s take in some data and find the gems on this awesome Saturday of MLB DFS action!

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10/5 DFS Two-Game Slate (DK & FD)

The games: Minnesota Twins at New York Yankees (5:07 p.m. EST) & Tampa Bay Rays at Houston Astros (9:07 p.m. EST)

SP Strategy

Starting the right combo of two pitchers could give you a 20-40 point lead over the wrong combo of two starters, and there’s some huge value plays on this slate.

SP1: Gerrit Cole, HOU vs. TB (DK $10,800, FD $12,200)

For the most dominant pitcher on the slate, you’ll be spending top dollar, though Cole (who struck out over 300 batters in 2019) is much more affordable on DK. With his K/9 upside, he’s got the easiest avenue to 25+ DK points.

SP1 pivot: Blake Snell (DK $7,500, FD $9,400)

It’s hard to trust Snell against this dynamic and powerful Astros lineup. They hit for contact and power and sport a 131 wRC+ against LHPs. He’s super risky even at this price and Astros hitters have had plenty of success against him. He’s also probably not going to go past 2-3 IP, given his short appearances in his previous three starts/opens.

SP2: Masahiro Tanaka, NYY vs. MIN (DK $6,400, FD $8,000)

Tanaka usually pitches well in big games, and he’s been areliable starter in the postseason for the Yankees the past several years (3-2,1.50 ERA/ 3.49 FIP, .162 BAA and 22.3 K%). I like that he’s carrying about a 4-to-1K/BB rate after the All-Star break, even if there’s a chance he gets blown up fora couple HRs early. That would be a disaster for us, but his pivot – devoid of playoffexperience and still a veritable neophyte at the big-league level, is evenriskier.

SP2 pivot: Randy Dobnak (DK $5,800, FD $5,500)

Dobnak’s regular season numbers look a bit like Tanaka’spostseason stats – so he’s worth a look. But the Yankees were having somepretty good at-bats last night and I’m just not too interested in a play thisrisky.

10/5 DFS SP1/2 Combo Breakdown:

Top 3:

  • Cole/Tanaka leaves $4,100 per hitter on DK (Preferred – mixing in value and stud bats)
  • Tanaka/Dobnak leaves $4,725 per hitter on DK (For an Astros full power stack and just a couple of the best Yanks/Twins bats)
  • Snell/Tanaka leaves $4,512 per hitter on DK (super risky but viable if Cole gets less than 20 points and Snell pitches 2-3 clean)

Bottom 3:

  • Cole/Dobnak leaves $4,175 per hitter on DK (The option if you want to fade Tanaka)
  • Snell/Dobnak leaves $4,587 per hitter on DK (Crazy talk)
  • Cole/Snell leaves $3.962 per hitter on DK (No thanks)

10/5 DFS Hitters

10/5 DFS C: Martin Maldonado, HOU (DK $2,900, FD $2,200)

If Maldonado gets the start, he’s probably the cheapest starting bat on the slate and makes perfect sense as a contrarian play the obvious options of Gary Sanchez and Travis d’Arnaud, who’s got four hits in four career AB (with a homer) against Gerrit Cole. Pivots: Sanchez for power upside, d’Arnaud for BvP fanatics.

10/5 DFS 1B: Edwin Encarnacion, NYY (DK $4,600, FD $3,800)

The most expensive 1B is still a bargain at this price, and he’s got multi-homer upside in Yankee Stadium. The Parrot walker has a 121 wRC+ against right-handers this season. Pivot: Yuri Gurriel (1B/3B) at just $4,200 on DK.

10/5 DFS 2B: Jose Altuve, HOU (DK $4,300, FD $4,100)

We’re still on track with our basic builds of Astros/Yankees and the price is depressed on DK. I’m not going to overthink this one, plugging in one of the best hitters of the past decade, postseason included. Pivot: Jonathan Schoop ($3,500 on DK) if he’s starting.

10/5 DFS 3B: D.J. LeMahieu, NYY (DK $4,500, FD $3,800)

The Yankees leadoff hitter connected last night and always give you a chance with his high contact rates and ability to punch one the other way. He drew some surprising comparisons to Derek Jeter in an eye-opening deep dive before he even played a game for the Yankees, and I’ve been a believer from day one. Pivot: Alex Bregman ($4,300 on FD), Gurriel on DK.

10/5 DFS SS: Alex Bregman, HOU (DK $4,800)

Bregman launched 41 homers this year in an MVP-type season, including six in his final 13 games. He’s exceptional against LHPs (205 wRC+ and .473 wOBA) and there’s no reason to leave him out of your builds. Pivot: Gleyber Torres ($4,000 on DK), Didi Gregorius ($3,200 on FD).

10/5 DFS OF: Brett Gardner, NYY ($DK $4,200, FD $2,900)

Opposing teams have been pitching the sluggers carefully this season, and guys like Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton may only see a couple mashable pitches over multiple ABs. This has allowed Gardner to bulk up his power numbers (28 HRs and .253 ISO) this season and produce at unexpected levels. He’s inexpensive and will be chalky, but he’s a must-have in your lineup builds. Pivot: Jake Marisnick (DK $3,000, FD $2,300) – I’ll have some lineups with both Gardner and Marisnick so I can fit all these other big bats.

10/5 DFS OF: Giancarlo Stanton, NYY (DK $4,000, FD $3,800)

Getting Stanton at this price seems like highway robbery, and while he’s probably going to exit early for a pinch runner or defensive replacement, he can get a lot done in 2-3 ABs. Watching his ABs last night, he looks good and is going to make most of my GPP lineups. Pivot: Michael Brantley (DK $3,800, FD $3,500).

10/5 DFS OF: Max Kepler, MIN (DK $4,500, FD $3,400)

I need some Twins in here and I’m most interested in Kepler, who’s plate approach and batted ball data seems tailor-made for Yankee Stadium. He’s a pull hitter and Tanaka could easily serve up a dinger if he leaves one in Kepler’s wheelhouse. Pivot: Eddie Rosario (DK $4,500, FD $3,600).

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10/5 DFS FeaturedShowdown (9:07 p.m. on DK)

It’s going to be tough to use Cole as CPT and use allprobable starting players, but you can do it.

Sample DK Showdown Lineup with Cole at CPT ($400 remaining :

Captain (1.5x) – G. Cole ($18,000)

UTIL – Y. Gurriel ($8,400)

UTIL – M. Brantley ($7,800)

UTIL – T. d’Arnaud ($5,800)

UTIL – J. Marisnick ($5,600)

UTIL – J. Wendle ($4,000)

I‘m more inclined to use Cole at UTIL and fit in a studAstros bat at CPT (with d’Arnaud as my lone TB bat in the Altuve build):

Sample with Cole at UTIL:

Captain (1.5x) – A. Bregman ($14,700) or J. Altuve ($13,500)

UTIL – G. Cole ($12,000)

UTIL – J. Marisnick ($5,600)

UTIL – T. d’Arnaud ($5,800)

UTIL – M. Maldonado ($5,000)

UTIL – M. Straw ($6,800) or M. Brantley ($7,800)

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10/5 DFS FeaturedSingle-Game (9:07 EST on FD)

Hitters only, with Springer or Brantley determining if it’sMaldonado or Gurriel in the last spot.

Sample FD lineup:

MVP (2x) – A. Bregman ($9,000)

All-Star (1.5x) – J. Altuve ($8,000)

UTIL – T. d’Arnaud ($4,000)

UTIL – G. Springer ($9,500)/M.Brantley ($7,500)

UTIL – M. Maldonado ($4,000)/Y. Gurriel ($6,500)

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