Joey Ricotta | October 15th, 2019
Last night didn’t exactly go the way I thought it would. But that’s what makes baseball so great, right? We just never know what’s going to happen. The St. Louis Cardinals are on the verge of elimination and the Washington Nationals are one game away from childhood dreams. Before that, the New York Yankees will host the Houston Astros for what will be Game Three of the ALCS. The series is currently tied at one game apiece and this sets up to be a critical swing game. As the title reads, these picks are more for GPPs/tournaments. For cash games, you may want to use a different strategy and take a safer approach. Without further ado, let’s get to the picks.
Gerrit Cole ($10,200 DK, $11,800 FD)
He’s the best pitcher on the slate. Even if you’d like to argue that he’s not, he’ll most likely go the deepest into the game. Patrick Corbin can get into walk trouble at times and basically gets a six-inning cap. Luis Severino hasn’t been fully stretched out since returning on September 17th, after missing the entire season to that point. Severino has been very good, don’t get me wrong. He still has massive K potential tonight, but if he gets the early hook due to pitch count and Aaron Boone‘s willingness to use the pen early and often, he might not get a chance at picking up the victory. No victory, no extra DFS points. Furthermore, Cole has been lighting it up this postseason with a 2-0 record, 0.57 ERA, and 25 Ks in 15.2 IP. He’s also pitched well against these Yankees. The Yankees that are in today’s lineup are 7-46 (.152) with zero homers and 13 Ks against Cole.
Dakota Hudson ($5,600 DK, $7,300 FD)
Hudson is only in play on two-pitcher sites like DraftKings. Otherwise, it’s a very clear decision, in my opinion, to use Gerrit Cole. Hudson is more of a ground ball pitcher. He ranks second behind only Dallas Keuchel among pitchers with at least 100 innings pitched for the highest GB rate (56.9% GB). Ground balls, generally, aren’t what we are looking for when trying to pinpoint pitchers to use. Normally, we are looking for strikeouts. The reason why he might be a solid option is if he’s able to get some early weak contact and induce a lot of ground balls, he might pitch deeper into the game than the other pitchers on the slate tonight. I could see a scenario where he holds the Washington Nationals in check, throwing seven innings of four-hit, one-run baseball.
C Yadier Molina ($3,300 DK, $2,600 FD)
Molina is a veteran bat-handler facing a left-handed pitcher, and he’s the cheapest catcher I’m willing to roll out tonight. Most of the time, I’m looking for a cheap, punt option at catcher and I don’t expect much out of Martin Maldonado tonight.
2B Jose Altuve ($4,800 DK, $4,200 FD)
I can’t go entirely against the grain. Altuve has looked like the star he is this postseason, batting .370 with 3 HRs, 5 RBIs, and a 1.192 OPS. He’s also hit pretty well against Severino (6-18 .333 avg). Altuve isn’t afraid of the moment or the opponent, I’m locking him in.
SS Carlos Correa ($4,600 DK, $3,800 FD)
After four games during which Correa was non-existent at the plate, he started to get it going in Game Two of the series, going 2-5 with a homer, a double, and two RBIs. Correa has also popped Severino to the tune of a .357 batting average (5-14) with one home run. I think the last game was just what he needed to get himself going.
OF Jose Martinez ($4,000 DK, $2,400 FD)
Manager Mike Schildt made it a point to get Jose Martinez in the lineup for Game Three and you have to think he’ll be in there again tonight. Martinez didn’t disappoint, going 2-4 and scoring a run. He’s the hottest hitter on the Cardinals right now (6-9 in the postseason), and he gets the platoon advantage against Corbin.
St. Louis Cardinals vs Patrick Corbin
No one believes in this offense and it’s clear they are the weakest group of hitters left in the playoffs. However, Corbin does give up some power to right-handed hitters and the Cardinals still have some heavy hitters like Paul Goldschmidt and Marcell Ozuna waiting in the wings. Much like last night, which I was absolutely wrong about, I feel like the Cardinals will take at least one game in this series. As pesky as they’ve been this season, you have to think they won’t go down without a fight. This could be a good stack to win a tournament.
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Main Credit Image: Embed from Getty Images