World Series Game 2 between the Braves and Astros in Houston is set for Wednesday. SuperDraft has a unique way to play with the “multiplier” mode where there is no salary cap, so enjoy picking everyone you want. Instead, the safer/chalkier players have lower multipliers, while the players that appear to have more risk have higher multipliers, allowing for more upside. With just one game, you will select a “Champion” that has a 50% boost on their “Superflex” multiplier. Typically pitchers will score higher and thus are usually better in the “Champion” spot but that will be popular so it could make sense to pick a hitter instead.
Max Fried, Atlanta Braves (1x score multiplier)
I am fairly shocked at Fried’s multiplier, as the Astros are one of the best-hitting teams in baseball, especially against left-handed pitching. He was absolutely fantastic in his first two starts this postseason, pitching six scoreless against the Brewers and then allowing just two earned runs in six innings against the Dodgers. His third start was a different story, giving up five earned runs in less than five innings in Los Angeles. I think any range of outcome is really on the table for this matchup so I’m more interested in the Astros hitters. However, if I play Fried, it would likely be at the Champion spot because I’d want the risk to come with more reward and the 1.5x multiplier.
Jose Urquidy, Houston Astros (1.6x)
After a solid regular season, Urquidy was unable to replicate that same success in his only start this postseason. He allowed five earned runs in 1.2 innings to the Red Sox in Game 3 of the ALCS. Also during the regular season, he threw 31% of his pitches over the heart of the plate according to StatCast, which was the sixth most in baseball (min. 1,000 pitches). He is also a reverse-splits pitcher, allowing a .325 wOBA, .209 ISO and 45.7% fly ball rate to right-handed hitters since 2019. The fact that his multiplier is higher than some hitters is enticing but it also speaks to the risk involved with inserting him into your lineup. I do not have much interest in him in the Champion spot and prefer to pick another hitter over him for my lineup(s).
Austin Riley, Atlanta Braves (1.75x)
Typically better against left-handed pitching, Riley has actually performed better against righties this season (.396 wOBA, .248 ISO, 146 wRC+) and coincidentally having the best season of his career. Factoring this season into his career against right-handed pitching he is still doing well with a .351 wOBA, .219 ISO and 36.6% hard contact rate. He also is hitting each of Urquidy’s pitches with at least a 114 wRC+ this season. I love Riley in this game and like him in the Champion spot where his multiplier jumps to 2.65x.
Freddie Freeman, Atlanta Braves (1.6x)
The reigning National League MVP, having an incredible postseason, is another Champion candidate for me. If it weren’t for an insane run from Eddie Rosario, Freeman likely would have won NLCS MVP. He has the platoon advantage, which would normally be in Urquidy’s favor, but not when it’s Freeman and his .420 wOBA, .266 ISO and 44.3% hard contact rate against righties since 2019. I will have Freeman in every lineup and definitely in some Champion spots as well where he has a 2.4x multiplier.
Adam Duvall, Atlanta Braves (1.9x)
It hasn’t been the best postseason for Duvall, but it hasn’t been the worst either. He just walked and hit his second home run of the postseason in Game 1. He’s certainly better against left-handed pitching than right, but he absolutely can hold his own against righties with a .340 wOBA, .286 ISO and 53.1% fly ball rate. I want this fly ball hitter vs. pitcher matchup, especially with the short porch in left field and his multiplier.
Alex Bregman, Houston Astros (1.55x)
One of the best hitters against left-handed pitching in all of baseball with a .423 wOBA, .282 ISO, 38.5% hard contact rate, and 44.8% fly ball rate since 2019. Bregman’s fly ball rate should help counter Fried’s ground ball tendencies. He is very talented, so I have no issue throwing him in the Champion spot, but I prefer the Braves.
Fried is the more talented pitcher and the only one I’m considering for a roster spot. However, the Astros are also very good so I’m not sure if I get there and may just roll out five hitters. Urquidy leaves too many pitches over the middle of the plate and the Braves are playing on another level right now. I prefer to approach this with a Braves stack and likely Freeman or Riley in my Champion spot. Bregman is my favorite Astros hitter, but I also like Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel.
This article expresses the personal views of the writer and does not reflect the view(s) of SuperDraft in any way.