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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Phillies vs. Astros DraftKings MLB DFS World Series Showdown Strategy on October 28

Steve Buchanan preps you for Friday’s World Series Game 1 between the Phillies and Astros with DraftKings lineup strategy and captain’s picks.

After a prolonged layoff, baseball will resume once again Friday night. The World Series will kick off in Houston starting at 8:03 p.m. ET. Not many would have ever guessed that we’d be seeing the Phillies playing in this series, as they were fighting to keep their playoff spot during the final week of the season. Nonetheless, they’re here for baseball’s final act in 2022.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB Showdown $250K Game 1 Extravaganza [$50K to 1st] (PHI vs HOU)


Captain’s Picks

Justin Verlander ($16,200 CP) — It’s hard not to look at Verlander as your captain. He’s only made two starts during the postseason, as the Astros have yet to lose a game. Verlander has turned in mixed results but his last start was a thing of beauty against the Yankees. Throwing six innings, he allowed just one run on three hits while striking out 11 for 34.5 DKFP. In the captain spot, that would have earned you a massive 51.7 DKFP. No one owns that type of ceiling in this game. The Phillies will provide strikeouts and during the postseason has a 24% K%. Verlander only made one start against this club during the regular season and struck out 10. It should be noted that the Phillies were running out their “B” squad in that game. With the strikeout upside he has, and the lack of strikeouts coming from the Astros, I feel that Verlander is the only answer among the two starters in this game.

Bryce Harper ($15,000 CP) — Using a hitter in the captain spot comes with plenty of risk. There is a very legitimate chance they could put up a zero, resulting in very little chance that you’ll cash your lineup. But, if we’re talking about Harper, that hasn’t happened often in these playoffs. He’s hitting a ridiculous .419/.444/.907 with five home runs, six doubles, 11 RBI, and 10 runs scored. In the 11 games the Phillies have played, there has only been one game where he hasn’t collected a hit. He’s had at least two hits in seven of those games, which is absolutely ridiculous. Harper does have the advantage that Verlander doesn’t really throw a changeup and instead relies upon a fastball, slider, and curveball. During the regular season, Harper hit no less than .314 against any of those pitches.

Other to consider: Kyle Schwarber $14,400

UTIL Plays

Jeremy Pena ($7,400) — I’m flabbergasted that Pena is still this cheap after everything he’s done in the postseason. For someone that is slashing .303/.324/.426 with three home runs, five RBI and seven runs scored, this is a steal. Pena has the benefit of hitting in front of Yordan Alvarez ($9,800) and Alex Bregman ($9,200), so if he gets on, the likelihood of him scoring has been high. This is a big reason why he’s averaging a run per game through the Astros seven playoff games. With his power potential and his spot in the lineup, Pena is someone I’m immediately slotting into one of my utility spots.

Yuli Gurriel ($6,000) — Gurriel has really flown on the radar despite having a solid postseason. Through seven games he’s hitting .367 with 11 hits in total. Amazingly, he hasn’t drawn a walk OR struck out through 30 at-bats. The man is literally making contact with every at-bat he’s taking. He has the benefit of hitting lower in the lineup so he’s been seeing plenty of pitches. But, he’s not one of the flashier names and will likely get ignored during lineup builds. He did post slightly better numbers at home during the regular season, slashing .255/.304/.362 with four home runs, 17 doubles, and 23 RBI. If you need someone to mix up the ownership in your lineups, Gurriel could be your guy.

Kyle Schwarber ($9,600) — On the more expensive end, it’s hard to ignore the hot and cold spells that Schwarber goes through. He’s either red-hot or colder than my mentions on Twitter (@SBuchanan24). There is no in-between. If the Padres series showed us anything, he could be on one of his prolific hot streaks. During that series, he went 6-for-15 with three home runs. That’s literally what we need when we’re getting Schwarber. Yes, he’s the leadoff man but he’s not someone the Phillies are looking to draw a walk. During the regular season, 26 of his 46 home runs came off the fastball. While Verlander was great at keeping the ball in the park, Schwarber doesn’t often let pitchers get away with mistakes.


J.T. Realmuto ($8,800) — Of the more expensive bats, I’m fine with keeping Realmuto on the board. While he was a great fastball hitter during the regular season (.306 BA with a .546 SLG), he really struggled against breaking pitches. With Verlander incorporating a slider and curve 42% of the time, this is a game where Realmuto could struggle. He hit just .232 against breaking pitches with six home runs and striking out 56 times in 168 at-bats. When you consider Alvarez, Schwarber and Bregman are no more than $1,000 more, he’s an easy fade for me.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB Showdown $250K Game 1 Extravaganza [$50K to 1st] (PHI vs HOU)

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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests. The contents contained in this article do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups.