As of writing, Washington and New York still hadnít decided on starting pitchers. The Nationals are likely headed toward using both Gio Gonzalez and Tanner Roark early in the game on Thursday, which makes using either in fantasy close to worthless. As for the Yankees, they may not decide on a starter until Friday, but Sonny Gray could get the call as he was originally slated for Game 5 against the Indians.
Dallas Keuchel, HOU vs. NYY ($43): The Yankees upset the Indians, but they won mainly through pitching. They also didnít face a lefty starter, so this will be something new. The most relevant stat for the Yankees may be that their numbers are much worse on the road. In the final month of the season, the Yankees had a .405 wOBA and .259 ISO against lefties at home, but those numbers drop to .332 and .194 on the road. Keuchel was solid in his first postseason appearance, striking out seven and allowing only three hits. In seven of his last nine starts, heís given up five hits or less. Keuchel faced New York back in May, giving up five hits to go with nine Ks.
Kyle Hendricks, CHC at WAS ($43): Washingtonís starter isnít expected to go deep into the game, so Hendricks is the reasonable pick after carving through this lineup in the opener for six strikeouts and two hits allowed through seven innings. Hendricks also went seven innings in his early August appearance against the Nats, giving up five hits. This should be yet another low-scoring game and Hendricks has it in him to go deep against a slew of Washington hurlers.
Willson Contreras, CHC at WAS ($16): Contreras only has two hits in this series, but one of them was a homer against Gonzalez, who he should face at least once in this game. That power, along with a lower 14.0 percent K rate in the last month, should help him reach base at least once in this game. In fact, due to his four walks, Contreras has reached base in every game of the series thus far.
Yulieski Gurriel, HOU vs. NYY ($12): Gurriel has been a steal the entire playoffs and his price remains low, despite nine hits in four games against the Red Sox. In all, heís hit safely in his last 10 games and heíll be one of my favorite plays in this series no matter the matchup. Projected starter Gray conveniently has worse numbers against righties this season (.297 wOBA allowed, 3.84 xFIP). He also couldnít make it four innings in his start against the Indians in the ALDS.
Ben Zobrist, CHC at WAS ($11): This is purely a cheap play with a guy that rarely strikes out (14.3 percent K rate this season). Zobrist has also been one of Chicagoís better bats this series, grabbing a hit in the last three games with two of those being doubles. As a switch hitter, that will also help plenty against Gonzalez (4.41 xFIP vs. righties) and Roark (5.09 xFIP vs. lefties), both of whom struggle against the opposite side of the plate.
Kris Bryant, CHC at WAS ($19): I know Iím going with a lot of Cubs, but their bats were much better in the early games in this series against weaker pitching. Max Scherzer may be available, yet itís doubtful heíll pitch more than a couple of innings. While Bryant has struck out nine times in this series, Iím still comfortable with him at the price. He doubled against Gonzalez in the opener and has a 5-for-11 career mark against Roark.
Carlos Correa, HOU vs. NYY ($19): Didi Gregorius ($14) is the only other viable choice at shortstop for this slate, but Iíll roll with Correa, who had four hits and two homers in the final three games of the Red Sox series. Prior to the playoffs, Correa was roasting righties with a .472 wOBA and .364 ISO in his last 49 plate appearances.
George Springer, HOU vs. NYY ($13): The Astros are heavily favored in this one, so Iíll continue stacking their bats. Springer has been huge in the playoffs with seven hits including two doubles and a homer. He has a solid .368 OBP in 16 at-bats against Gray in his career, which includes a home run and three walks.
Josh Reddick, HOU vs. NYY ($12): Reddick fits the mold of a cheap Astros bat that has been consistent in the playoffs. While his power is lacking, Reddick still has six hits in four games and rarely strikes out against righties with a 8.0 percent K rate in his last 25 plate appearances against them (not including playoffs) to go with a .423 wOBA.
Aaron Hicks, NYY at HOU ($12): Since I couldn't base my entire lineup off Astros, Iíll go with a guy thatís hit safely in all six playoff games this postseason. The Yanks may not get much off Keuchel, but if one player gets a hit, itíll be Hicks with the way heís swinging. Hicks has been better against lefties all season and has a minimal 9.7 percent K rate against lefties in his last 31 plate appearances.