The National League Playoffs get going on Tuesday with a pair of Game 1’s in Texas, while the American League is on to Game 2 from their neutral sites in California. This gives us a full-day four-game slate for Tuesday, with baseball getting underway at 2:08 p.m. ET.
Editor’s Note: Padres SP Mike Clevinger will start tonight’s game vs. the Dodgers.
Tyler Glasnow ($9,300) - Unlike yesterday where Gerrit Cole was by far the best pitching choice, today’s slate is jumbled at the top with a few options that could potentially be the No. 1 pitcher. Glasnow is the most expensive pitcher today, and he draws a tough matchup against the Yankees that could end in disaster, but there isn’t a pitcher going on this slate with more upside. Glasnow has been among the league’s best starters in strikeout rate for the last couple of years, and 2020 was especially strong as he struck out more than 14 batters per nine innings. His 14.3 K/9 was actually the highest for anyone with more than 50 innings pitched.
Max Fried ($7,700) - Fried enters the playoffs off of a decent regular season, one in which his ERA (2.25) was far better than his underlying numbers would suggest. His strikeout rate per nine dropped from 2019 (9.4 to 8.0) and his walk rate went up (2.6 to 3.1). While Fried was closer to average in 2020 than he was in his strong 2019 season, there’s still plenty to like for today’s matchup against the Marlins — assuming Starling Marte ($4,700) doesn’t play. Fried becomes a lot less appealing if Marte is in the lineup, so it’ll be important to see if he can make it back from the hand injury that kept him out of Game 2 in the Wild Card round.
Deivi Garcia ($7,200) - Garcia is the least established starting pitcher on this slate, making his MLB debut in the second half of the 2020 season and logging just six total starts. Despite struggling with a high walk rate, Garcia was dominant in the minor leagues and his strikeout potential should be able to translate to the majors. That’s the key here, as Garcia is likely to have a shorter leash than most, but he’s a good bet for some strikeouts and has a decent shot at run prevention — especially if Austin Meadows ($3,900) is out again today. Meadows is on the Rays ALDS roster, but didn’t start in Game 1 and struck out in his lone pinch hit appearance.
Houston Astros - The Astros didn’t disappoint in Game 1, as they fell behind 3-0 early on but ultimately found their offense and ended up winning 10-5. The Astros were dominant as they racked up 16 hits and three homers — including two from Carlos Correa ($4,500) — and they’ll be looking to keep it going today against A’s starter Sean Manaea ($6,900). Like Bassitt from yesterday, Manaea is a decent but not great starting pitcher and that’s essentially a plus-matchup considering most starting pitchers in the playoffs are better than average. There are other offenses with similar scoring potential today, like the Dodgers and Braves, but the Astros are substantially cheaper with only George Springer ($5,100) priced above $5K.
DraftKings Slate Strategy
San Diego Padres - Like yesterday, the Astros offense is seemingly the best combination of scoring potential and price, but that also means they’ll likely be the most popular offensive choice. It’s probably going to be difficult to differentiate while stacking the Astros since a lot of these pitching choices are relatively close, so it could be worth looking elsewhere in GPPs. One team that figures to be lower owned today is the Padres, who are up against Walker Buehler ($8,500). Buehler didn’t warrant a mention amongst top pitchers today in part because he’s been pitching fewer innings of late, but also because the Padres are a difficult matchup (fourth in wOBA and fifth in wRC+ this season). The Padres are expensive, but with the Dodgers, Braves and Yankees up in the same price tier, it’s unlikely that many people will gravitate towards a Padres stack.
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