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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Astros vs. Phillies DraftKings MLB DFS Showdown Strategy for November 2

Garion Thorne preps you for Game 4 of the World Series between the Phillies and the Astros with game-script analysis and Captain’s Picks.

By the time you finish reading this sentence, the Philadelphia Phillies will have already hit another home run. Five long balls of Lance McCullers. Five. That’s more than the right-hander had surrendered in his first 10 starts of 2022 combined. Combine that with nine strong innings from Ranger Suarez and the bullpen, and you’ve got a Houston Astros team that no longer feels like the overwhelming favorite.

Can the AL Champions bounce back? Let’s break it all down from a Showdown perspective.

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: MLB Showdown $150K Relay Throw [$50K to 1st] (HOU vs PHI)


Captain’s Picks

Aaron Nola ($17,100 CP) - Nola has been shaky in his past two appearances — including Game 1 of the World Series — yet I still think he has the edge on Cristian Javier ($11,200) on this slate. A couple things to consider. First and foremost, Nola’s extremely good. While Javier was tossing scoreless innings down the stretch for the Astros, Nola was just as dominant for the Phillies, registering a 30.7% strikeout rate and a 2.22 FIP in the second half of the regular season. Secondly, Nola’s floor is so much higher than that of his counterpart. Not only does Nola have a longer track record and therefore a longer leash, but the veteran rarely beats himself. Nola walked a microscopic 3.6% of opposing hitters in 2022, a rate which put him in the 99th percentile in all of baseball. Javier? He’s walked 14 batters in his 26.2 career postseason innings. After Dusty Baker left McCullers in far too long in Game 3, I get the feeling he won’t be nearly as patient with Javier.

Bryce Harper ($15,000 CP) - The left-handed bats in Philadelphia’s lineup are going to be crucial tonight. For his career, Javier has faced 593 RHBs. Those hitters have combined to slash .143/.231/.304 with a .239 wOBA and a 36.6% strikeout rate. It’s not like lefties have crushed Javier, but by comparison, there’s no question which handedness has fared better against the 25-year-old. It’s also worth pointing out that Harper is as hot as the Sun coming into Game 4. In his 59 plate appearances in the playoffs, Harper has posted an .818 slugging percentage with a 238 wRC+. At the moment, he’s viable facing any pitcher on the planet.

UTIL Plays

Kyle Tucker ($9,200) - I do want to make the case for Tucker more complex than just saying “HE HIT TWO HOME RUNS OFF NOLA IN GAME 1,” but he did hit two home runs off Nola in Game 1. That matters. At least a little bit. As you would expect, Tucker was far better when facing right-handed pitching throughout the regular season, posting an .850 OPS and a .216 ISO within the split. He was even more successful in his 197 plate appearances against RHPs on the road, where he sported an eye-popping .612 slugging percentage with a 183 wRC+. Also, while this isn’t as big a factor with J.T. Realmuto ($8,000) and his impressive pop times sitting behind the plate, Tucker did steal 25 bags in 2022. He can contribute in a number of ways.

Brandon Marsh ($6,000) - Yesterday, I suggested Marsh as a value asset due to the fact he hit RHPs well across the final two months of the regular season — he posted a .312 average with a 137 wRC+ within the split — and he had solid career numbers off a former AL West foe in McCullers. Well, after he rewarded me for that line of thinking with a home run, I’m going right back for seconds. It is slightly annoying that Marsh’s price point is up over $1,000 from where it stood on Tuesday, yet left-handed bats are clearly the way to attack Javier. Don’t believe me? Look no further than Marsh, who happens to be 4-for-7 with a double when opposed by the Astros’ right-hander. Can lightning strike twice? For $6K, I’m willing to find out.


Rhys Hoskins ($8,200) - While Hoskins did hit a home run in Game 3, he’s been completely “boom or bust” so far in the playoffs. The six long balls in 60 plate appearances are very nice, yet he’s also batting .196 with a 31.7% strikeout rate. Considering how dominant Javier has been against RHBs, and how much the right-hander generates whiffs within the split, I think this could be a long night with little contact for Hoskins. It’s not like he was amazing in right-on-right matchups during the regular season, either. In 498 plate appearances versus RHPs, Hoskins owned an underwhelming 108 wRC+. There’s simply better ways to spend your money.


I’m having a hard time picking against the Phillies in this one. For as good as Javier is, Philadelphia has yet to lose a home game in the playoffs and they have Aaron Nola taking the mound this evening. While the RHP has struggled in his last two starts, Nola led the National League in fWAR during the regular season (6.3). He’s a stud.

Final Score: Philadelphia 4, Houston 2

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: MLB Showdown $150K Relay Throw [$50K to 1st] (HOU vs PHI)

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.