FanDuel MLB: League Championship Series Breakdown
FanDuel MLB: League Championship Series Breakdown

This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.

Pitching Breakdown

Max Scherzer ($11,400) Scherzer is the obvious big name of the slate and I've had the honor of writing up all of his postseason starts and have regularly detailed his relative struggles. He rose to the occasion in Game 4 of the NLDS, going seven innings for the first time since July 6, throwing 100 pitches for just the third time in that span. He continues to be plagued by the long ball, allowing seven in his last four starts. The elite upside is always there, but he isn't the cash game anchor you expect given the name and price. He allowed five runs on two long balls, though fanned 11, in a September 18 start at St. Louis.

Adam Wainwright ($8,000) - Wainwright profiles as a clear GPP target given the lowest price point, and his volatility. He shut out Atlanta over 7.2 innings in the NLDS but allowed 11 runs and five homers in his final two regular-season starts, lasting a total of 9.2 innings. His four prior starts; one run across 27 innings. There isn't elite strikeout upside, but I think I trust Wainwright more than the equally priced Tanaka, and a 2.56 home ERA (4.17 xFIP) seems to back that up.

Zack Greinke ($9,600) - Another volatile option, Greinke allowed three homers in 3.2 innings to the Rays in the ALDS. He had two September outings in which he allowed four runs, and three where he surrendered one or none. Greinke faired okay in a July 31 appearance against the Yankees, fanning seven over 5.0 innings, allowing two hits and two runs, leading to 30 FDP. He's hard to trust for cash purposes, but the alternatives are as well. Greinke is certainly capable of a bounceback, and the discount over Scherzer may prove worth it.

Masahiro Tanaka ($8,000) - The theme of this pitching slate seems to be volatility. Tanaka appears to be surging at the moment, allowing only one run in each of his last three outings, including a seven K showing across five frames in the ALDS. He had tremendously different home/road splits, and comes into Houston with a 6.05 road ERA, allowing a .396 wOBA to lefties, though the 4.77 xFIP doesn't fully support those struggles. A 6.9 K/9 rate doesn't scream upside either.

Hitting correlation

We can seemingly segway from Tanaka straight to the Astros' bats. The struggles against lefties by Tanaka seem to suggest Yordan Alvarez ($3,800) is the obvious play, and the price point is great as well. A struggling Michael Brantley ($3,400) can also be considered, and maybe Josh Reddick ($2,600) or Kyle Tucker ($2,800) can round out lineups on the cheap.

With no discernible splits against Greinke, it's again a challenge to pinpoint targets in a deep Yankees lineup; you just know you want at least some pieces. DJ LeMahieu has plenty of experience against him from their days in the NL West, going 17-for-58 against but collecting only six extra-base hits and a .724 OPS. Gio Urshela ($2,600), Luke Voit ($2,800) and Brett Gardner ($3,100) were the Yankees' best hitters against righties during the regular season and seem to offer cheap ins to the lineup.

Scherzer has allowed 12 homers over his last 11 starts, 11 of which have come to left-handed hitters. That goes in the face of Cardinal offensive anchors Marcell Ozuna ($4,000) and Paul Goldschmidt ($3,500), though the price on the latter is enticing. Ozuna has had some success against him (10-of-36, two homers), and the Cardinals lack power from the left-hand side, so it may be best to not overthink. Matt Carpenter ($2,700) is 7-of-23 off Scherzer and is the best lefty long ball threat, while Kolten Wong ($2,400) is a cheap in at a nice lineup spot. Dexter Fowler ($2,800) continues to hit the ball hard with nothing to show for it; one of those trends has to buck at some point.

Juan Soto ($3,700) seems to be the obvious buy into the Nats top-heavy offense, but he's been highly home run dependent in the playoffs. Anthony Rendon ($4,000) has been more reliable than both Soto and Trea Turner ($4,300), and offers cash stability with GPP upside. Ryan Zimmerman ($3,000) has been resurgent, and Howie Kendrick ($2,700) is impossible to ignore at this price. He's amassed seven hits in his last four games, driving in six runs.

One-offs

Alex Bregman ($4,400) continues to rake, and should be the bat everyone builds around. He hit safely in every game against Tampa and has only four games with less than nine FanDuel points (FDP) dating back to September 13. BvP fans will love the Astros' matchup against Tanaka, with Jose Altuve (4,300), George Springer ($4,100), Carlos Correa ($3,700) and the aforementioned Reddick all having taken him deep twice in 20 at bats or less against him. Robinson Chirinos ($2,500) has also had success in limited exposure (5-of-12), if you need some savings.

Injuries to Kurt Suzuki ($2,600) and Victor Robles ($3,000) allow for Yan Gomes ($2,500) and Michael Taylor ($2,200) to be used on the cheap. Robles is reportedly closer to returning, and Taylor has done little with his opportunity however.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Chris Bennett plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: k30kittles, DraftKings: k30kittles.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Bennett
Bennett covers baseball, college football and college basketball for RotoWire. Before turning to fantasy writing, he worked in scouting/player development for the Atlanta Braves and Montreal Expos. He's also a fan of the ACC.
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