This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
This isn't how anyone thought the World Series would go. The Nationals are up 2-0 after dispatching both Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander. The Astros are favored in Game 3, but at -125, it's almost a pick 'em with an over/under of 7.5 runs.
After the first two games totaled 24 runs with each team's top pitchers on the mound, most will be expecting another high-scoring affair. That could be the case, but Anibal Sanchez has been oddly good in the postseason, allowing one run and five hits while striking out 14 in 12.2 innings. But unlike most pitchers, he's been slightly worse at home, allowing a .312 OBP and .306 wOBA compared to .293 and .287 on the road, respectively.
It hasn't been as clear cut for Zack Greinke, who hasn't had a great outing in the playoffs. He was better in his last start in New York, giving up three hits and one run in 4.1 innings, though he also walked four batters. Prior to that, he gave up nine runs in his first 9.2 innings pitched. Similar to Sanchez, his numbers are also better on the road, allowing a .254 OBP and .257 wOBA compared to .266 and .269 at home, respectively.
Like the previous matchups, you can throw out most of the regular season numbers because otherwise, the Nationals wouldn't have won the first two games. If you think they continue that dominance, righties have had the most success against Greinke with a .378 SLG allowed and higher 4.01 xFIP. And while he didn't allow many home runs in the regular season, he allowed five in his first two postseason starts.
If you care about BVP, this isn't the matchup for Anthony Rendon ($8,000), who is 1-for-12 in his career against Greinke. On the other end of that, Asdrubal Cabrera ($5,500) has three hits in this series and has a career .512 OBP in 43 plate appearances against the righty hurler. The downside is that four of his 16 hits have gone for extra bases, meaning he may not be worth an MVP selection. Kurt Suzuki ($5,000) is also somewhat viable after homering last game and he is 7-for-24 in his career against Greinke. The most popular MVP pick may be Juan Soto ($8,000), who has been awesome with two doubles and a homer in the first two games. Elsewhere, Adam Eaton ($7,000) continues to get on base every game with four hits this series and eight in the last six games. He doesn't have power, but if you're expecting this one to go under, he's a safe pick.
The downside for the Astros is that Sanchez is worse against lefty bats with a .311 wOBA and 1.34 HR/9 allowed. At home, he's allowing a .344 OBP and .336 wOBA to lefties. Of course, righty bats are also in play because of a higher 5.36 xFIP. Surprisingly, Sanchez hasn't faced a ton of Houston bats given his time in Detroit, but those he has faced like Jose Altuve ($9,000), Michael Brantley ($6,500) and Josh Reddick ($4,500) all have OBPs of at least .300 against the righty. If you ride the lefty stack, it's been a tough series for the trio, Yordan Alvarez ($6,500) included. Yet if you think they can turn their fortunes, Alvarez is the guy who could break open the slate despite a poor postseason. He closed the regular season with a .309 ISO in his last 94 PA against righty arms.
If you think the Astros bounce back, Altuve is the MVP play, at least in cash games. You know he's going to get on base, having done so in every postseason contest, but it's a matter of getting an extra-base hit or two to be worth it. Otherwise, George Springer ($9,500) and Alex Bregman ($8,500) could be better choices if you want to bank on a homer. Springer has three in the last seven games, while Bregman gained some confidence with a dinger on Tuesday. Those two closed the regular season on a tear, both sporting ISOs above .400 against righties in the final month.
It's the same story as previous games if you're in need of value plays. Reddick has been popular because he's a lefty, but he doesn't have a hit in the last four games and will likely be removed later in the game when a lefty pitcher inevitably takes the mound. If you want an Astro, you may be better off going with the catcher or one of the lefties in Alvarez or Brantley.
However, considering the odds are almost even, it makes more sense to grab a couple of the cheap Nationals, Cabrera and Suzuki included. Ryan Zimmerman ($6,000) and Howie Kendrick ($6,000) have had more consistent postseasons, but Victor Robles ($5,500), who was dealing with a hamstring injury, has quietly gotten on base in his last five starts and could be a viable tournament play.