This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
The World Series shifts to Atlanta for the next three days, taking the DH out of play and presumably a viable bargain bat as well. Other than that, we shouldn't expect much lineup fluctuation, and we're just trying to pick the right matchups.
Atlanta will turn to Ian Anderson Friday, a young arm they've made a concerted effort to throw at home when possible. The splits aren't supremely different; he posted a .266 wOBA (.220 to lefties) and 3.66 FIP inside Truist Park against a .317/4.54 on the road. His go-to pitch is a filthy change up, which could be effective against an aggressive early-count swinging Astros' lineup. The converse is Anderson is supremely inefficient. His 3.72 BB/9 during the season were his lowest in his young career and he averaged only 5.1 innings per start. Houston is doing him a favor if they are chasing early.
Houston counters with righty rookie Luis Garcia, who has struggled on the road, allowing a 4.24 ERA and 4.41 xFIP. He's been particularly vulnerable to lefties away from Minute Maid Park, allowing a .374 wOBA to opposite-handed bats as opposed to .276 to same-handed hitters. He's been feast or famine in his postseason appearances, but overall has walked seven, struck out 12, allowed eight hits, 10 runs and two homers across 9.1 innings.
Yordan Alvarez ($9,500) should get his own segment in this column. He's as automatic of a producer as there is in a DFS baseball setting at this point, and should be nearly 100 percent used in cash games, and likely near that number as your MVP. Only in the craziest of multi-entry GPPs would I expect him left off rosters. Everything below assumes he's in your lineup.
Given Garcia's issues against lefties noted above, conventional wisdom will have many targeting Freddie Freeman ($9,000), but he's not feasible with Alvarez already locked in. That leaves us with Eddie Rosario ($7,000), who's white-hot 14-game hitting streak ended in Game 2, or Ozzie Albies ($7,500), who's riding his own 11-game post season hit streak. With a righty on the mound, Rosario likely slots in as the leadoff hitter, with Jorge Soler ($6,500), who's hit it hard since his return, hitting fifth. I think he'll be popular, and I'd honestly prefer to build around Albies, but Rosario's form and price are difficult to pass on.
A cash lineup core of Alvarez, Michael Brantley ($6,000) and Yuli Gurriel ($6,500) is almost too obvious and equally too cost effective, still leaving $13,000 for two spots. Neither of the latter two offer any power upside if we're trying to differentiate, but are a lock to put the ball in play. The rest of the top of the Astros lineup is laboring, and hasn't proven that one past game will be a spring board. That has me leery on a homer-needy Jose Altuve ($8,000). This lineup is too loaded to be scare away from, but it truly feels a bit of a guessing game.
Soler's price point atop the lineup is really appealing, and he's hit the ball hard in both games. Austin Riley ($6,000) is ice cold, but isn't moving out of his cleanup spot and will have run producing chances at a huge discount. GPP MVP? Travis d'Arnaud ($5,000) may finally be getting into a rhythm after an injury plagued season and is my preferred Brave in the bottom third of the attack.
Gurriel and Kyle Tucker ($8,500) have been terrific, but it's still hard to build around the bottom of this lineup. I like Tucker a great deal otherwise. But their combined production continues to give Martin Maldonado ($4,500) chances for RBIs. He's rarely cashing them in, but he's minimally priced and is getting opportunities, which is all you can ask for if you need a dart throw.