My MLB Best Bets ended up 10-7-1 at BetRivers Sportsbook for a net gain of $115 throughout all of last week. Last Tuesday didn’t treat us kindly however. Josiah Gray grossly failed to exceed his K prop due to getting into a number of extended counts that saw him need 98 pitches just to get through five innings; the 4 BB didn’t help the situation either. I’m still scratching my head as to how the only game of the series between the Pirates and Rockies failed to go over. Eight runs were on the board through four innings and eight remained when it was said and done which means both shockingly pens kept both offenses scoreless in the back half – at Coors! We cashed the F5 but lost the FG over. Seattle closed the night out with a loss after dropping a 6-5 decision to the Brewers in extras. Let’s see if we can get back to adding to the bottom line with Tuesday’s installment of best bets – SLAM YOUR MAN!!
YTD: 34-30-3 ($332)
LW: 10-7-1 ($115)
Bet Major League Baseball at BetRivers Sportsbook
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
So you’re either in or out on the Buccos hot start to the 2023 campaign. By logging wins in 16 of their 23 played games and entering the season with a 67.5-game season win total, it’s pretty safe to assume Derek Shelton’s troops are overachieving immensely. However, the Pirates have been getting the job done both in the batter’s box and on the bump with the offense ranked No. 8 overall in averaging 4.95 run per game and the pitching staff churning out the most quality starts in the game. With a 24.3 percent K rate and 7.8 percent BB rate paired with a 37.7 percent hard hit percentage – second best output of career – Johan Oviedo has played a large role in the pitching staff’s rise from the ashes.
I’m willing to take another flier on him in this spot against a Dodgers outfit that’s been hitting for power evidenced by ranking No. 3 in OPS (.785) and launching the second most long balls into the cheap seats (40), but has had issues batting for average (No. 23) with a bulk of LA’s lineup having issues with the curve and slider per Baseball Savant. So long as Max Muncy and Co. doesn’t demolish his 4-seamer, Oviedo can have success in this start. I’m not bullish on Noah Syndergaard whose peripherals haven’t bred confidence to this point (4.91 ERA). If his sinker isn’t sinking, Andrew McCutchen and Co. will pepper his changeup and 4-seamer offerings much like they have all season long. Fingers crossed we get a nice plus-money return offered up with the hosts!
BET THE PIRATES
A fun pitching matchup will play out in the second game of this three-game set between the Astros and Rays with Luis Garcia set to square off against the surging Drew Rasmussen. The former was excellent in his most recent start at home against Toronto shutting the Blue Jays out through seven innings with a stellar 9:1 K/BB ratio. He did so by dramatically cutting down on his 4-seamer usage and buried the Jays inside with his cutter. That allowed for the slider, curve, and changeup to do damage by way of garnering a plethora of whiffs and Ks. If Garcia sticks to this plan of attack, he’ll be able to go into “The Trop” and handle what’s been the league’s best offense by a country mile.
As dominant Rasmussen has been through his first four starts, MLB bettors must take into account the caliber of opposition faced that’s allowed for him to rack up such a gaudy stat line. Save for the Blue Jays, the Reds, A’s, and Nationals all rank in the bottom third of the league in OPS against RHP. While Houston currently clocks in at No. 19 overall (.697), the defending champs rank No. 7 over the last 15 days and No. 11 over the last week. Yordan Alvarez and Co. stands 9-7 versus righties and 5-3 on the road. With Garcia on the up-and-up and squaring off against the tougher cast of opponents, I’ll test fate and see if tonight’s the night Tampa drops its first home game of the year - provided it doesn’t lose the series opener with the rookie on the bump.
BET THE ASTROS
Chicago White Sox vs. Toronto Blue Jays
We’ll close the night out in Toronto in the second game of the series between the Palehose and BJs. Mike Clevinger and Jose Berrios have done nothing but toss batting practice to this point of the season. The former enters his fifth start 2-1 with a 3.26 ERA and 1.50 WHIP. While those outputs look competitive his 8.4 hit per nine average is the highest of his career, and his 5.1 BB/9 is laughable to say the least. The latter enters start No. 5 off his best showing to date after hurling seven innings of three hit and 2 ER ball at the Astros. Still, the Twins lost and his record remained 1-3 with a 6.23 ERA and .259 BAA.
Berrios will have his hands full with the White Sox’ bats that’ve crushed the curve and 4-seamer per Baseball Savant. He was raked for nine hits (3 HR) and 6 ER in just four innings of his lone start against Chicago last season. Bo Bichette and his mates have teed off on the 4-seamer. Not so much against the slider. But if it isn’t moving the way Clevinger would like, he’ll be hard-pressed to go deep in this one. With both pens representing two of the league’s worst, I expect runs to be scored early and late over the course of this matchup.
BET THE F5 & FG OVER