This article outlines the best daily fantasy MLB plays of the day at every position. We take a comprehensive look to uncover these core recommendations, factoring respective salaries into the analysis.
Please note, these player picks were organized early in the day. For MLB contests, always check lineups and weather closer to game time. Rain, wind, or unexpected managerial decisions could open up additional sources of value. Be sure to keep an eye on the MLB Headlines and Injuries desk.
We will be looking at the two-game slate starting at 5:07 ET.
Clayton Kershaw - LA Dodgers (vs. Atlanta) - DK: $9,400 FD: $10,100
At the time of writing this article (Thursday morning), the Rays and Astros have not named a starter. I’m expecting both teams to enact a bullpen game anyway, so it’s tough to rely on a fantasy pitcher from that game. In fact, Clayton Kershaw will probably be the only legitimate hurler on this slate. He has looked very good this postseason (not to jinx it), allowing three earned runs with 19 strikeouts through 14 innings. The Braves’ offense is tough, but I’m expecting Kershaw to flirt with another quality start.
Will Smith - LA Dodgers (vs. Atlanta) - DK: $4,400 FD: $3,100
The Dodgers presumably hold the highest run-scoring projection of the night, so you’ll want to stack several LAD bats into your lineup. It all starts with Smith, who has collected seven hits over his last four outings. The matchup against Atlanta RHP Bryse Wilson (5.91 career ERA) looks good, and I’m even considering Smith in the C/1B spot on FanDuel.
Also Consider: Mike Zunino (punt)
Ji-Man Choi - Tampa Bay (vs. Houston) - DK: $3,600 FD: $2,500
We’ll need to see who Houston names as a starter and how that impacts the Tampa lineup. Either way, Choi could hit cleanup against a right-handed pitcher, representing a premium lineup spot with RBI potential. That makes him an interesting value play on both sites, serving as a salary relief option to help stack those Dodgers.
Also Consider: Max Muncy
Jose Altuve - Houston (vs. Tampa Bay) - DK: $4,600 FD: $3,700
Altuve was the hero again yesterday, and he has now hit a homer in four of his last five games. After a miserable regular season, the former AL MVP has finally found his groove when it matters most. Sure, he’s pretty expensive in DFS tonight, but Altuve is far and away the best second baseman on this slate. Lock him in!
Also Consider: Brandon Lowe
Justin Turner - LA Dodgers (vs. Atlanta) - DK: 5,100 FD: $3,100
FanDuel limits how many players you can select from one team, and the LAD hitters are pricey on DraftKings. That means we’ll have to pick our spots with the Dodgers’ offense, and I believe Turner is a priority within that. He has a comfortable contact/power profile that translates to all DFS formats. Tonight’s matchup looks good, and we could get another multi-hit showing from the Dodgers’ third baseman.
Also Consider: Alex Bregman
Carlos Correa - Houston (vs. Tampa Bay) - DK: $4,300 FD: $3,400
Correa has followed the exact same path as his teammate, Altuve. The Houston shortstop was disappointing in the regular season, hitting .264 with only five homers in 201 at-bats. Correa now has five homers in just 34 postseason at-bats. The Astros are looking to keep their season alive, and their “big three” could make that a reality.
Also Consider: Willy Adames
Mookie Betts - LA Dodgers (vs. Atlanta) - DK: $5,600 FD: $4,400
This shouldn't be a surprise, as the Dodgers are set up very nicely tonight. They scored 15 runs last night, and I'm expecting the offense to come through once again - just not to the tune of double figures. Betts is the best overall hitter on this slate, and you would be wise to try and build your lineup around him. I'm personally making him a centerpiece of my cash game lineups on FanDuel and DraftKings.
George Springer - Houston (vs. Tampa Bay) - DK: $4,800 FD: $4,200
I mentioned Houston’s “big three” in the previous write-up, referring to the experienced trio of Altuve/Correa/Springer. They have marshalled this playoff surge, and Houston will need production from all three of them in order to keep the dream alive. It’s nice that they are all right-handed bats who won’t fall victim to a tough lefty/lefty draw out of the bullpen. I believe combining these Houston core players with a Dodgers’ stack will give you an excellent chance of cashing in all DFS formats.