Monday’s MLB Over/Under: Handicapping Twins-Brewers Series Opener
Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kyle Gibson
All right, a rough end to what started out as a nice week, but it’s a new week now and time to get this train back on track.
Zylbert’s 2018 MLB Over/Under Betting Record: 55-35-2, +16.25 units
Yesterday’s Result: Pirates-Padres Under 7.5 (loss)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit
Minnesota Twins @ Milwaukee Brewers | O/U: 8
8:10 p.m. ET
Probable Pitchers: Kyle Gibson (2-6, 3.48 ERA) vs. Brent Suter (8-5, 4.28 ERA)
Former American League Central neighbors, the Twins and Brewers will resume their interleague rivalry in the first of three this evening at Milwaukee’s Miller Park to finish off their season series after Milwaukee took two of three at Target Field in the latter half of May. And they’ll be kicking things off with a pretty underrated pitching matchup.
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I pledged my allegiance to Gibson going into his last start, so you already know I’m a big fan of the 22nd pick of the 2009 draft. While he didn’t provide us with the best work in that outing (season-high 11 hits allowed), Gibson was still mostly solid, hanging in there to last seven innings for the third time in his past four starts.
That’s just further proof of how the 30-year-old has really come into his own, as he was never someone you could trust to consistently go deep into a ballgame. But this season, he’s registering 5.98 innings per outing, his best mark since he threw a career-high 194.2 innings three years ago.
Aside from that, you have to credit Gibson for how he’s picked up where he left off from last year’s successful second half, when he was 7-3 with a 3.76 ERA and nearly struck out one batter per inning. This year, he’s averaging career-best marks in ERA (3.48), WHIP (1.24), BAA (.225) and K/9 (8.75).
He’ll be taking on someone who also might be on the verge of breaking out, Suter, who looks like he’s finally sticking in the Brewers’ pitching rotation. If nothing else, the Harvard graduate has displayed tremendous consistency, recording at least five innings in all 15 of his starts this season. Additionally, he’s surrendered more than four runs in a start only once.
That consistency is very valuable when we’re talking about a total as high as 8 because it means both starters are able to provide a steady bridge to their back end of the bullpen. Suter will draw a matchup that figures to help him maintain that streak, as the Twins have put up the fourth-worst OPS (.690) versus left-handed pitching this year. Furthermore, they strike out once every 3.78 at-bats when a southpaw is on the hill, which can help Suter continue to post something in line with his career-high 7.44 K/9.
But the item that can aid Suter the most is Minnesota’s limited power against left-handers, especially while Miguel Sano bafflingly remains in the minor leagues. The Twins hit one home run every 49.6 at-bats opposite lefties, which is the second-worst mark in all of baseball. Suter is yielding 1.43 HR/9, a career high, so this matchup could help minimize the damage in that department.
Play: UNDER 8 (-110)
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