This article is part of our DraftKings MLB series.
Games 3 and 4 of the World Series were a study in contrast. In the former, Philadelphia smashed five home runs. In the latter, they managed exactly zero hits against Cristian Javier and company. What will Game 5 bring us Thursday? Well, on DraftKings, you have $50,000 to spend on six players. Your Captain earns you 1.5 times the points. The Phillies are leading with Noah Syndergaard, but it will be a bullpen game. Justin Verlander is starting for the Astros, and while he had a great season he struggled in Game 1. Thus, I am not going with either pitcher in my lineup. Instead, I went with these six players.
Kyle Tucker, HOU at PHI ($13,500): Tucker racked up 30 home runs and 25 stolen bases this season, and since I mentioned Game 1, let's not forget his two homers in that game. A few key Astros were dependent on their home ballpark, but Tucker had an .866 OPS on the road. Also, while he is a lefty, since 2020 he has an .802 OPS versus lefties.
Bryce Harper, PHI vs. HOU ($9,600): Harper didn't get a hit in Game 4, nobody did, but he's hit plenty in the playoffs. On top of that, he hit plenty when healthy this season and, you know, throughout his career. Since 2020 he has an 1.026 versus righties and an 1.000 OPS at home. Verlander may win the Cy Young, but for the last five or six seasons he has had an issue allowing home runs.
Yuli Gurriel, HOU at PHI ($7,200): Gurriel just won't stop hitting! He added two more hits in Game 4, and he's been the best hitter for the Astros in the playoffs, at least in terms of batting average. The Cuban keeps hitting, and I keep recommending him for my lineups, and it keep working. A bullpen game does not worry me in the least.
Chas McCormick, HOU at PHI ($6,800): With McCormick, the hope is a lefty hits the mound. This season, he had a .972 OPS against left-handed pitchers. In this salary range, that's a theoretical upside that is hard to find, and in a bullpen game, the odds of a southpaw on the mound at some point is high.
Martin Maldonado, HOU at PHI ($6,400): Maldonado didn't start Game 4 as the Astros looked for some more offense, but he started Game 1 when Verlander started, and Verlander gets the catcher he wants behind the plate. This is another case of simply spending salary on a guy likely to get four plate appearances, and he did hit 15 home runs this year.
Bryson Stott, PHI vs. HOU ($6,200): Stott had 10 home runs and 12 stolen bases this season. He's a lefty facing a righty. On top of that, he had a .692 OPS at home, which isn't good, but is better than he was on the road. At this salary, anything he does can provide you bang for your buck.