The MLB playoffs are underway and it’s a great time to get in on some DraftKings fantasy baseball action. Below, we take a look at Thursday’s main slate, which locks at 12:08 p.m. ET.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Today’s game between the Marlins and Cubs has been postponed due to inclement weather.
Yu Darvish, CHC vs. MIA, $9,700 - Facing elimination, the Cubs turn to their ace with Darvish on the mound. Coming off an excellent season, he gives Chicago a great chance to extend its season. Darvish posted a 2.01 ERA and averaged 25.8 DKFP in the regular season. In his 12 regular season starts, he only allowed multiple runs in four of them.
Ian Anderson, ATL vs. CIN, $7,500 - Anderson looks a bit too cheap after a stellar rookie season. He finished with a 1.95 ERA and scored at least 15 DKFP in all but one of his outings. This matchup isn’t all that tough relative to most playoff matchups since the Reds only had a 96 wRC+ against right-handed pitching in the regular season.
Yasmani Grandal, CHW at OAK, $4,200 - The A’s have yet to name their starting pitcher for this afternoon. At least we know they don’t have an ace to throw out there. Grandal has homered in each of the first two games of this series. He also went yard in the final game of the regular season.
James McCann, CHW at OAK, $3,400 - Since we don’t know who is starting for Oakland, it’s hard to know if McCann will end up starting. There were a bunch of games this year where he was the catcher and Grandal was the DH. McCann is most likely to start if there’s a lefty on the mound for the Athletics. He’s one of the only cheap catchers with real upside since he had a 144 wRC+ in the regular season and hit seven homers in just 31 games.
Jose Abreu, CWS at OAK, $4,800 - Arguably the MVP of the American League this season, Abreu has hits in each of the first two playoff games and is averaging 11 DKFP. After finishing among the leaders in baseball with 19 homers, he’s one of the higher upside players on the slate, but he’s only the seventh most expensive first baseman.
Jedd Gyorko, MIL at LAD, $3,600 - Spending up at first base is the best course of action. There are only three players expected to start priced under $4,200 and none of the them look like good options. They are also all facing Clayton Kershaw or Yu Darvish. At least Gyorko hit nine homers in the regular season, so it’s possible that he finds some upside by running into a pitch. Even so, he’s a weak option today.
Tommy La Stella, OAK vs. CHW, $4,800 - Just like with Oakland, the White Sox have yet to name a starting pitcher. We don’t know who La Stella will face, but he’s been pretty consistent regardless of the starting pitcher this season. He’s currently riding a six-game hitting streak and has a 151 wRC+ against righties in the regular season.
Kolten Wong, STL at SD, $3,800 - Wong has a couple of things going for him. He’s cheap and he typically leads off for the Cardinals. In addition, he’s on an eight-game hitting streak and played better as the season went on. Wong had a .270 batting average in the second half of the season after having a .255 batting average in the first half.
Manny Machado, SD vs. STL, $5,700 - After a disappointing loss in the first game of the Wild Card series, the Padres will probably need a big offensive performance to extend their season. They got bad news yesterday when neither Dinelson Lamet nor Mike Clevinger were healthy enough to make the Wild Card roster. Machado had an excellent season and had a career-best 148 wRC+. He certainly earned himself some MVP votes.
Kris Bryant, CHC vs. MIA, $4,000 - Basically the entire Cubs’ offense was terrible in yesterday’s loss. They only mustered one run going up against the Marlins. Even though Sixto Sanchez earned high praise for his rookie season, he scored negative DKFP in each of his final two starts of the season. This could make the matchup for Chicago easier than it appears and Bryant homered in each of his final two regular season games.
Fernando Tatis Jr., SD vs STL, $5,500 - Despite the loss yesterday, Tatis produced reasonably well in his playoff debut. He reached base twice and scored a pair of runs. Tatis got hit in the wrist by a fastball about a month ago and looked off for a while, but started to round into form again at the end of the regular season. He capped his season by scoring double-digit DKFP in five of his final seven games.
Marcus Semien, OAK vs. CHW, $4,100 - Semien played a big role with Oakland facing elimination yesterday. In a tight game that the A’s won by two runs, Semien hit a two-run homer and that ended up being the difference in the game. Even though his overall numbers were down in the regular season, Semien still brought upside to the table and hit eight homers.
Mookie Betts, LAD vs. MIL, $5,900 - Of the handful of outfield studs we have to choose from today, Betts looks like the best option. He led all outfielders on today’s slate with an average of 11 DKFP in the regular season and he scored 14 DKFP in his first playoff game as a member of the Dodgers. Betts hit 16 homers and stole 10 bases in the regular season.
Christian Yelich, MIL at LAD, $4,200 - Even though it was a down year for Yelich, I am always willing to roster a player of his ability at such a cheap salary. We never see Yelich this cheap and he was able to collect a pair of hits yesterday even though the Brewers lost Game 1 to Los Angeles.
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