Diamondbacks vs. Giants Odds & Pick: How to Bet this NL West Duel (Wednesday, September 29)
Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images. Pictured: San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Alex Wood.
- The Giants put their four-game winning streak on the line as they face the Diamondbacks at 9:45 p.m. ET
- Alex Wood takes the hill for San Francisco while Merrill Kelly will pitch for Arizona.
- Mike Vitanza breaks down the matchup and offers up his pick.
Diamondbacks vs. Giants Odds
|Over/Under||8 (-110 / -110)|
|Time||9:45 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.|
The San Francisco Giants took the first game of their series against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Tuesday’s 6-4 victory.
The Giants’ offensive production was spread out amongst multiple contributors, with Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford, Wilmer Flores and Mike Yastrzemski contributing hits and driving in runs in the home win.
Meanwhile, the Diamondbacks also received offense from multiple sources, with RBI knocks coming from Kole Calhoun, David Peralta, Miguel Rojas and Jake McCarthy. McCarthy’s effort also included a solo home run in the seventh inning of the road defeat.
With the Giants entering Wednesday’s matchup as strong home favorites with starter Alex Wood on the mound, does the total offer better value in this National League West bout?
Merrill Kelly will take the hill for the Diamondbacks in what will amount to his 27th start of the season thus far. Kelly has struggled a bit this season, especially if you compare against a 2020 campaign which, albeit limited, saw him put up a 2.59 ERA over five starts.
This season, he’s reverted to a 7-11 record and 4.09 FIP over 153 innings pitched. He’s also seen his strikeout rate fall from an average of 8.3 K/9 to just 7.4 K/9. While he’s been successful in limiting the longball, averaging just 1.24 HR/9, a deeper look suggests that he is lucky to have maintained that figure. Per Stat Cast, Kelly is allowing a 39.1% Hard Hit rate to opposing hitters, well above the league average.
His struggles have been more apparent of late, particularly over his last three starts. During that time, Merrill has pitched to a 6.87 FIP and allowed a staggering 2.9 HR/9 average to opposing hitters.
This matchup also won’t be an easy one. He’ll take on a Giants team that has been one of the best in baseball this year against right-handed pitching, collectively hitting to a .334 wOBA (fifth best in all of baseball).
San Francisco Giants
Wood gets the nod for the Giants in what has been a resurgent season for the veteran left-handed starter. Over 25 appearances this year, Wood has pitched to an impressive 10-4 record, 3.56 FIP and 9.9 K/9 average. He’s also been extremely successful in limiting the long ball, holding opposing batters to an average of just 0.94 HR/9 innings.
Wood has been particularly effective in limiting his opponents Barrel-rate to a low 5.5% on the season. To be barreled, a ball requires an exit velocity of at least 98 miles per hour off the bat, so this measure shows he’s been successful in limiting very hard contact this season.
Part of that is due to his repertoire of pitches, which completely excludes a fastball and instead focuses exclusively on a sinker, slider, and changeup. These pitches have been exceptionally effective this season, as evidenced by his above average 12.4% Swinging Strike rate.
This matchup won’t be particularly daunting. He’ll take on a Diamondbacks team that has been around the league average this season against southpaws, compiling a .322 wOBA and 98 wRC+ in such situations so far.
While the Giants are the clear home favorite, the current money line of -275 offers no value at this mark. Given the way Wood has pitched this season, theirs is little chance it moves down further enough for consideration.
That said, the total is a better target in this game. Kelly issues have been well documented, but he’s struggled substantially of-late and now takes on a Giants team that has been one of the best in baseball against right-handed pitching this season.
They’ve also been hot at the plate, averaging 6.4 runs per game over their last five. If Kelly’s struggles continue, manager Torey Lovullo will be forced to turn the ball over to a bullpen with an MLB-worst 5.01 FIP on the season.
While Wood has been good this season, he hasn’t been unhittable. In fact, he’s allowed at least two runs in seven of his last eight starts. While Giants bullpen has been very good on the season, they’ve been more susceptible of late.
Over the past 30 days, their 3.92 FIP is only 11th-best in baseball. I don’t expect the D-backs to score a ton of runs, but they should do just enough to do their part toward the over in this spot.
As such, I’m targeting over 8.5 runs as my top pick. I’m comfortable with it at the current line, but would likely look away from this game if it moves any higher before the first pitch.
Pick: Over 8.5 (-105)
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