The 2024 MLB season begins Wednesday morning at 6am ET in South Korea with a two-game set between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres. We are more than ready to dip our toes into some early MLB daily fantasy baseball contests! 



DFS Showdown slates for baseball can be a little crazy, but we can set this up as a primer for what we at Fantasy Alarm expect to be a spectacular season of building winning MLB DFS lineups. We don’t need to build a full lineup for these first two games, but what these early contests can help us with is identifying some of the deeper plays within these teams. 

Everyone knows they want to play Mookie Betts, Shohei Ohtani and Fernando Tatis, but who are the DFS bargains further down the order we need to target in order to fit those top plays? Let’s take a look at who our favorites are regarding MLB DFS picks for Wednesday’s Seoul Series action!

MLB DFS Picks & Playbook: 2024 Seoul Series - Dodgers vs. Padres, 3/20

MLB DFS Starting Pitchers

Tyler Glasnow, Los Angeles Dodgers

While he’s the most expensive player on the slate, people are likely to still flock to Glasnow, given the hype of his moving to Los Angeles and getting a big contract extension. The righty is having a strong spring, posting a 0.90 ERA over 10 innings (three spring starts) and getting rave reviews for his whiffs, both in games and on the back fields. 

Just keep in mind that the Dodgers are thinking long haul, so expect a pitch-count and no more than five innings, depending on his pitch-efficiency. The Padres were not a big strikeout team against righties last season, though they also don’t have much experience against him outside of Xander Bogaerts. If you’re using a starting pitcher, the lean is Glasnow with the hope that he mows down the bottom half of the lineup. 

Yu Darvish, San Diego Padres

Darvish is the contrarian play given the firepower we’ve got with the Dodgers lineup. While I don’t like to invest heavily in BvP (batter vs pitcher) data, Darvish’s numbers against some of the big boys in L.A. are pretty good. 

Of the four players who have at least 20 at-bats against him, only Freddie Freeman has given him trouble while Mookie Betts, Max Muncy and Will Smith have had some trouble. Darvish has had a decent spring but will also likely be on a pitch-count as well, having thrown just nine competitive innings this spring, so there’s a little more risk given the Dodgers lineup and the potential of him being chased early. 

*Side Note: You cannot use starting pitchers for this Showdown slate on FanDuel. They limit it to hitters only, but they also offer you an MVP (2x points) as well as a STAR (1.5x points) which makes it a little more interesting.




MLB DFS Hitters: Recommended Options

Freddie Freeman, 1B Los Angeles Dodgers

I’ve always been a big fan of Freeman and for this run of DFS contests, he definitely warrants Captain/MVP/STAR status, depending on how you construct your lineups. As I mentioned above, he’s got strong and successful experience against Darvish, posting a .290/.353/.645 slash line with two doubles and three home runs over 31 at-bats. With Betts and Ohtani setting the table for him and Will Smith providing solid lineup protection, he should get off to a great start this season.

Shohei Ohtani, DH Los Angeles Dodgers

Last season, Ohtani posted a .327 average with 33 of his 44 homers coming against right-handed pitching. With his focus solely on hitting this season, we expect another strong performance at the plate and it’s likely to get going here in the first game. Even though the game is in Seoul, watching these two Japanese stars facing each other is going to be crazy-hyped in this park and Ohtani should deliver in style.

Fernando Tatis, OF San Diego Padres

It’s been a fairly quiet spring for Tatis, but we are all very much aware of his talent and abilities. A career .272 hitter against righties, Tatis also boasts an impressive .262 isolated power mark with a .365 wOBA (weighted on-base average). The added speed is a nice bonus as well and we expect the Padres to try and be aggressive on the bases.

Ha-Seong Kim, SS San Diego Padres

Kim spent seven seasons in the KBO before joining MLB so the return should have him amped up for this two-game series. Kim is expected to lead off for the Padres and his 38 stolen bases last season show you he can not only be aggressive on the basepaths, but successful as well. He’s shown solid plate discipline and can draw the walks when needed, so that .340 OBP vs RHP last season should certainly play here.

Mookie Betts, SS Los Angeles Dodgers

We certainly can’t leave off Betts for this first game, can we? He’s leading off for one of the most potent offenses in the game and while some may believe he could be focused more on his defense at shortstop than at the plate, his skills at the plate and on the bases are elite. 

He may not have strong BvP data against Darvish (.182 average over 33 at-bats), but he still posted a .309 average with a .237 ISO and eight stolen bases against right-handed pitching last year. The smaller ballpark in Seoul should also help boost that power.




MLB DFS Bargains: Recommended Options

Jason Heyward, OF Los Angeles Dodgers

While we all know Heyward has never been someone you want to use in season-long fantasy baseball, getting him into your lineups as a one-time DFS bargain works. He doesn’t have much success over just 13 at-bats against Darvish, but the pitcher allowed lefty hitters to post an impressive .364 wOBA against him last year. If you want the big boys in your lineups and in the top spots, you need some pay-downs and Heyward lines up well here.

James Outman, OF Los Angeles Dodgers

Outman has faced Darvish just six times in his career, but he does have a home run against him. He’s another bargain lefty bat in this Dodgers lineup and posted a .359 wOBA with a .238 ISO against righties last season. He’s a little pricier than Heyward but should be worth the spot.

Jurickson Profar, OF San Diego Padres

The switch-hitting Profar could be one of the better bargains on the slate. His overall numbers have never been much to write home about, but a .702 OPS with a .311 wOBA against righties should play in a showdown lineup against a righty like Glasnow.

Gavin Lux, 2B Los Angeles Dodgers

One more lefty bat for the Dodgers here with Lux. He’s had a tough spring, but mostly in the field which is why the team moved him back to the keystone. Offensively, he’s looked good this spring with a .343 OBP and strong plate discipline. You’re not getting much in the way of power or speed, but perhaps the ballpark dimensions in Korea give him an added boost.

Jackson Merrill, OF San Diego Padres

Why not give the lefty-swinging rookie a look in his first game as a MLB player? Merrill made a huge splash this spring and earned the starting centerfield job for the Padres. He’s more of an on-base guy than he is a power-hitter, but what power he has displayed has come against righties. 

Both his manager and GM are raving about what he’s done and what could be, so the opportunity is there. Expect him to be amped up for his first big-league game so he might press a little at the plate to start, but still worth the look on this Showdown slate.