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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Lineup Strategy for Rays vs. Astros Showdown on October 17

Greg Ehrenberg gives his top lineup advice for Saturday’s fantasy baseball Showdown contest on DraftKings between the Rays and the Astros, which starts at 8:37 p.m. ET.

League Championship - Houston Astros v Tampa Bay Rays - Game Two Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The MLB Playoffs are underway, and we are focusing on the DraftKings Showdown contest for Game 7 of the ALCS between the Rays and Astros, which takes place on Saturday at 8:37 p.m. ET.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB Showdown $150K Primetime Pennant Push [$50K to 1st] (HOU vs TB)


Place your MLB bets at DraftKings Sportsbook or by downloading the DK Sportsbook app.


Showdown Strategy

Houston Astros

Once again, we have a good pitching matchup today. Even though the Rays are favored to win at DraftKings Sportsbook, I lean towards the Astros as the more likely team to win tonight’s game. For this reason, I think Lance McCullers ($16,200 CP/$10,800) is the best pitching option and the guy to roster in the Captain’s spot. Coming back from Tommy John surgery was a rocky road for McCullers, but he’s generally pitched well as of late. In his first start of this series, he worked seven innings with a season-best 11 strikeouts and scored 32.8 DKFP.

As for the bats, I will to continue to the bang the drum of Michael Brantley ($7,000). The guy has done nothing other than rake and the pricing algorithm refuses to make Brantley more expensive. He’s consistently one of the cheapest hitters on the team, even though he’s been one of Houston’s best hitters in both the regular and postseason. Brantley is riding a 10-game hitting streak and has a 175 wRC+ in the playoffs.

A fun fact about the Astros, no pair of teammates in playoff history have homered more in the same game than George Springer ($8,800) and Carlos Correa ($9,000). This isn’t to say I think both of them will homer today, although each of them have power upside. After hitting towards the bottom of the Astros’ lineup, Correa is moving up in the order in recent games. This makes him a stronger fantasy play with more potential for counting stats. Correa and Springer are my two favorite options on the team to pay up for.

For salary savings, Kyle Tucker ($5,000) is my favorite cheap bat on Houston. Even though he doesn’t have the same experience in the playoffs as his teammates, he was one of the better fantasy players on the Astros in the regular season and his price is cheap. Tucker homered last night and showed a combination of power and speed in the regular season. He hit nine homers and stole eight bases during the regular season.


Tampa Bay Rays

I don’t like him quite as much as McCullers, but I still think Charlie Morton ($10,200) is a good play in this contest. Ideally, I think we want to roster both starting pitchers and look to punt with hitters. There are enough cheap bats that this is viable roster build. Morton is no longer restricted as he was for much of the regular season and he scored at least 21 DKFP in each of his postseason starts. The pitchers are much safer players than any of the hitters in this game and a decent start from either of them likely outscores any hitter unless somebody hits multiple homers.

I have loved paying up for Randy Arozarena ($9,800) in this series. Today, this won’t be the case. He’s the most expensive hitter in this game and the opportunity cost of rostering him is one of the starting pitchers. As great as he’s playing in the playoffs, I don’t think Arozarena is super likely to outscore the starting pitchers.

For most of the regular season, the Rays’ best hitter was Brandon Lowe ($8,400). He struggled at the start of the playoffs and even got benched for a game in this series. It looks like he’s finally starting to find a groove at the plate and is averaging 11.5 DKFP in his last two games.

For value, the best options on Tampa Bay are Austin Meadows ($6,200) and Manuel Margot ($6,000). Meadows is in a prime spot as the Rays’ leadoff hitter and Margot is too cheap for a guy who hit two homers yesterday. Margot scored 30 DKFP last night and accounted for almost all of the Rays’ offense.


The Outcome

Imagine if the Astros end up winning the World Series after getting down 3-0 in this series. It would be one of the more perfect 2020ish storylines. Almost nobody wants to see the Astros win, although it’s starting to look like the might be the best team in the league. If not for bad luck on batted balls, the Astros should have already won this series. They have a higher expected batting average in every game of this series while the Rays have gotten lucky to scratch out runs. I am siding with Houston to become the second team in baseball history to win after falling into a 3-0 hole.

Final Score: Houston 4, Tampa Bay 3

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB Showdown $150K Primetime Pennant Push [$50K to 1st] (HOU vs TB)


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is gehrenberg) 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 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.


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