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Fantasy Baseball Picks: Top DraftKings MLB DFS Lineup Strategy for Dodgers vs. Rays World Series Game 2 on October 21

Garion Thorne gives his top lineup advice for Wednesday’s fantasy baseball Showdown contest on DraftKings between the Rays and the Dodgers, which starts at 8:08 p.m. ET.

After Tyler Glasnow issued six free passes and surrendered six earned runs in Game 1 of the World Series, it’s easy to suggest that the Rays are going to need more from their starters going forward. Tonight, that’ll mean a quality outing from 2018 Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell ($10,600). Considering the Dodgers will be going with another bullpen affair, this has the feeling of a contest that Tampa Bay needs to take down.

As for what all that means for DFS, let’s dive into this slate from a Showdown perspective.

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB® Showdown $500K WORLD SERIES® Scuffle [$100K to 1st] (TB vs LAD)


Captain’s Picks

Mookie Betts ($16,500 CP) - The most expensive play on the board, but one that is justified in that distinction. Betts’ outstanding glove had sort of been stealing the focus from his bat coming into the World Series, yet the former MVP quickly reminded people of his offensive potential in Game 1. Betts not only collected his first home run of these playoffs, he also stole two bases and used his amazing speed to score on a fielder’s choice in a pivotal fifth inning. With that performance, Betts is now slashing .327/.424/.510 with a 156 wRC+ in his 59 postseason plate appearances. He is, without question, the best overall hitter between these two teams and his placement at the top of Los Angeles’ order gives him a path to unmatched volume. What else could you ask for in a Captain?

Justin Turner ($13,200 CP) - Let’s allow ourselves to ignore Turner’s current underwhelming showing in the playoffs. Turner is a known commodity. We don’t need small samples to define him. In fact, when I think about the 35-year-old third baseman, I think of just one thing: An ability to crush left-handed pitching. Going back to the beginning of 2017, Turner’s managed to hit .323 off of southpaws in 554 plate appearances. Within that same span, the veteran possesses a .276 ISO, a 1.017 OPS and a 168 wRC+ that ranks as the fourth-best qualified mark in baseball across that specific stretch of time. This all bodes pretty well for a matchup with Snell, who has had his issues with RHBs away from Tropicana Field in 2020. To wit, the 87 righties Snell has faced under these conditions have combined to produce 2.61 home runs per nine and a .500 slugging percentage.


FLEX Value Plays

Ji-Man Choi ($6,800) - The nerve-wracking aspect of utilizing either Choi or Austin Meadows ($5,800) is the likelihood that both will be pinch-hit for at some point during tonight’s game. Really, with how Kevin Cash prefers to stack the duo and Brandon Lowe ($7,600) all within the first four slots of Tampa’s order against RHPs, you’re basically asking for Dave Roberts to turn to one of his many left-handed relievers at some point. Still, it’s the right-handed Tony Gonsolin ($10,400) that will start this contest and there’s a good chance that he’ll be followed by Dustin May ($9,400). So, if you want to play specific matchups, we know that Gonsolin is better versus RHBs due to his slider usage and we also know that May has conceded a .350 wOBA to LHBs across his entire MLB career. Choi could see as many as three plate appearances against these young arms and — for a man that’s produced a 164 wRC+ in the postseason — that’s an enticing proposition.

Nick Anderson ($4,800) - I’m expecting this to be a more competitive script than Game 1, which means we’ll likely end up seeing some of Tampa’s high-leverage relievers this evening. To me, despite his recent struggles, Anderson is the most interesting fantasy asset of that group. The hard-tossing RHPs has thrown multiple innings in five of his seven postseason appearances so far and, during the regular season, Anderson struck out an insane 44.8% of the batters he faced. Also, crucially, the 30-year-old hasn’t worked since Saturday, giving him three full days of much needed rest and recuperation. If Anderson can look anything like the September version of himself on Wednesday, he’s the exact archetype of relief pitcher that can have an impact in a Showdown setting.


Fades

Blake Snell ($10,600) - There’s some serious risk in fading the only pitcher that has a chance to go five innings in this game, but Snell hasn’t looked quite right in the playoffs. Not only does the left-hander own a 5.43 FIP and a 12.5% walk rate, but he’s struck out just 10 total batters and averaged 9.3 DKFP in his past three starts. Now, you could make the case that part of that lack of success is due to the presence of the Yankees and the Astros, but it’s not like things are getting easier with the Dodgers. In fact, Los Angeles led all of baseball during the regular season in ISO (.227), slugging (.483) and wRC+ (122). It also posted the lowest team chase rate (26.5%) and strikeout rate (20.3%) in the National League. So, even if Snell’s able to pitch into the sixth or seventh, he likely won’t have picked up many strikeouts along the way.


THE OUTCOME

For as much as I don’t love Snell’s DFS potential in this spot, that has more to do with strikeout upside than run prevention. Tampa’s bullpen is more rested than it’s been in weeks, they have a former Cy Young winner on the mound and the Dodgers will likely be relying on a pair of rookies that have struggled when called upon so far in the postseason. Los Angeles is winning this series, but I think the Rays will win this game. At the very least, they shouldn’t be the underdogs, as they currently are on the DraftKings Sportsbook.

Final Score: Tampa Bay 4, Los Angeles 3

Set your DraftKings fantasy baseball lineups here: MLB® Showdown $500K WORLD SERIES® Scuffle [$100K to 1st] (TB vs LAD)


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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 I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.