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MLB Daily Fantasy Helper: Monday 10/9/17

Hanley Ramirez is swinging a hot bat for the Boston Red Sox, and he is likely to be the cheapest first baseman starting today. Who else should you consider rostering on FanDuel's four-game MLB slate?

The beauty of daily fantasy baseball is that the top targets are different each and every day. Whether it's the right-handed catcher who destroys left-handed pitching or the mid-range hurler facing a depleted lineup, you're not going to find yourself using the same assets time after time.

While this breaks up the monotony, it can make it hard to decide which players are primed to succeed on a given day. We can help bridge that gap.

In addition to our custom optimal lineups, you can check out our batting and pitching heat maps, which show the pieces in the best spot to succeed on that slate. Put on the finishing touches with our games and lineups page to see who's hitting where and what the weather looks like, and you'll have yourself a snazzy looking team to put up some big point totals.

If you need help getting started on that trek, here are some of the top options on the board today.

Pitchers to Target

Max Scherzer ($10,300 on FanDuel): On paper, Max Scherzer had the best regular season stats among all of Monday's expected starters, sporting a 2.98 SIERA, 34.4% strikeout rate, and 26.5% hard-hit rate. The trouble is that he's been dealing with a hamstring issue that he suffered in his final regular season start, pushing his first postseason start back to this point. Scherzer has gone through similar scenarios over the last couple months with neck and calf injuries, and there's no telling what we're going to get on Monday afternoon. He claims he'll be able to go 100 pitches, but one would think the Washington Nationals will give him a quick hook against the Chicago Cubs if he shows any ill effects. He's potentially a boom-or-bust option, but offers the best upside in your tournaments. On the flip side, you can also consider attacking Scherzer with a Cubs stack in case he isn't right.

Luis Severino ($9,700): Luis Severino lasted all of 1/3 of an inning in the American League Wild Card game, but let's not forget he posted a 3.25 SIERA and 29.4% strikeout rate in the regular season. Given the poor performance it might feel risky to play him here, but perhaps that can benefit us through lower ownership in tournaments. And frankly, we've seen some crazy things happen already this postseason, with aces like Chris Sale and Corey Kluber getting lit up, so it's not like anyone is truly "safe." The season numbers favor Severino, and we shouldn't be surprised by a bounce back effort against the Cleveland Indians.

Hitters to Target

High-Priced Hitters

Aaron Judge ($3,900): Can Trevor Bauer hold the New York Yankees a second time? Despite posting a career-high 26.2% strikeout rate in the regular season, Bauer still allowed a 34.4% hard-hit rate, and his 3.80 SIERA rates worse than most of the other arms on the board. Judge remains one of the most likely bats to hit a dinger, and siding with the Bronx Bombers in round two could be a wise move.

Yasiel Puig ($3,300): Chase Field is the best hitting venue we have access to, so getting exposure to the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks is worth considering. Yasiel Puig looks to be rising to the occasion, going 5-for-9 with 2 extra base hits and 4 RBIs through two games. He's coming off a regular season in which he had a career-high 28 bombs and .224 isolated power (ISO), and shouldn't be too hard to fit in at his price. Zack Greinke put up a fine regular season himself, but allowed a 35.1% hard-hit rate, and struggled in the National League Wild Card game.

Value Hitters

Hanley Ramirez ($2,700): Hanley Ramirez has arguably been the best offensive player for the Boston Red Sox in the ALDS, going 6-for-10 with 2 doubles and 3 RBIs. The Sox were left for dead entering Sunday's game, but proved to have plenty of fight left in them, dropping 10 runs on the Houston Astros. They have a 5.11 implied team total against Charlie Morton, who's a tough customer, but has surprisingly only struck out righties 20.9% of the time this season, while allowing a .345 wOBA. Ramirez will likely be the cheapest first baseman on the board today, and makes a great addition to a Boston stack.

Josh Reddick ($2,700): Josh Reddick should be back in the two-hole against righty Rick Porcello, and these playoffs have reminded us what this Astros juggernaut is capable of. He's gone 4-for-12 with 3 runs scored so far, and if the Astros can get to Porcello, Reddick will undoubtedly be the beneficiary of some lucrative fantasy situations sandwiched between George Springer and Jose Altuve. Porcello is arguably the weakest arm on the mound today -- in the regular season he produced just a 4.28 SIERA, while allowing a 38.3% hard-hit rate. Houston has a 5.39 implied team total.

Ketel Marte ($2,200): In all likelihood, Ketel Marte will be batting second for the Diamondbacks against Yu Darvish. He's already produced some big performances in the playoffs, and is an amazing value at this near-minimum salary.

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