Best MLB Bets Today: Picks for Braves vs Guardians, More Monday Games (July 3)

Best MLB Bets Today: Picks for Braves vs Guardians, More Monday Games (July 3) article feature image

Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images. Pictured: Gavin Williams

We're on the eve of a national holiday, meaning you've either taken today off, too, or you're just watching the clock waiting to go home and get ready to enjoy the day off tomorrow.

What better way to spend it than betting on baseball?

Monday's MLB slate brings with it 10 games. Two get going this afternoon, and there are eight more under the lights. Our analysts have bets on three of those games, including Cardinals vs. Marlins, Orioles vs. Yankees and Braves vs. Guardians.

Here are our best bets from the MLB slate on Monday, July 3.

MLB Best Bets · Monday, July 3

The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that our MLB betting staff is targeting from today's slate of games. Click the team logos for one the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.

Time (ET)
6:40 p.m.
Over 8 (-110)
7:10 p.m.
Over 8.5 (-105)
7:10 p.m.
Gavin Williams Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-122)
Specific bet recommendations come from the sportsbook offering preferred odds as of writing. Always shop for the best price using our MLB Odds page, which automatically surfaces the best lines for every game.

Cardinals vs. Marlins

Monday, July 3
6:40 p.m. ET
Over 8 (-110)

By BJ Cunningham

Miles Mikolas has not been good this season. He’s outperformed his 4.44 ERA because his xERA is up at 5.24, and he’s not doing a great job at getting swings and misses with a K/9 rate at 6.34.

Mikolas is successful when he’s getting a high number of groundballs, with his main pitch being a sinker and his two-out pitches being a slider and curveball. He’s always been somewhere around 50%, but this season his ground ball rate is all the way down at 37.6%, which is the lowest of his career.

Overall, his Stuff+ is just 89, which is ninth worst among qualified starting pitchers, but his Location+ is 107, so that is inflating his Pitching+ rating. The Cardinals' bullpen hasn’t been that great, either, ranking 18th in both xFIP and Stuff+.

Braxton Garrett has been one of the most profitable pitchers to bet on this season, but looking at his expected metrics, he’s a very average MLB pitcher. His xERA is sitting at 4.14 and a .318 xwOBA. Then when you dig into his Statcast numbers it starts to get a little more concerning: 45.9% hard hit rate allowed, 12th percentile for average exit velocity allowed and 35th percentile for barrel rate allowed.

The Cardinals have been above-average against lefties this season and especially against left-handed sinkers with a .424 xwOBA and +11.6 run value, which is Garrett’s main pitch.

I have 8.9 runs projected for this game, so I like the value on Over 8 runs at -110.

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Orioles vs. Yankees

Monday, July 3
7:10 p.m. ET
Over 8.5 (-105)

By Kenny Ducey

Yankee Stadium is not a good place for fly-ball pitchers. It has the third-highest park factor for home runs according to Statcast, and it’s also where the New York Yankees play. Only four teams have a higher home run to fly ball ratio than the Bombers.

Tyler Wells is one of the most extreme fly-ball pitchers in the league, allowing them at a 37.2 clip, which is around 14 points higher than the league average, and the last time he started a game at Yankee Stadium he allowed three round-trippers.

Between Wells, who owns an 11.6% barrel rate, and Domingo German, who owns a fly-ball rate firmly above the league average, I think the ball should be flying out of the park here. German is coming off of a perfect game in Oakland, but he was aided by one of the friendliest parks for pitchers.

He won’t have the same level of success keeping fly balls in the yard here, and with that the over is a solid play.

Pick: Over 8.5 (-105)

Braves vs. Guardians

Monday, July 3
7:10 p.m. ET
Gavin Williams Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-122)

By Anthony Dabbundo

The Braves' offense is peaking right now with a league-low 18.1% strikeout rate as a team in June and a 149 wRC+ overall. The rest of season projections suggest that Atlanta will maintain its elite offensive profile, but that strikeout regression is looming.

Gavin Williams has an excellent fastball (109 Stuff+) and pairs it with an elite changeup. His minor-league strikeout numbers suggest he should strike out at least one batter per inning in MLB this year. The stuff is good enough and Cleveland is an average strikeout park. This is the same Braves lineup that had a strikeout rate third highest in MLB in 2022 with largely the same players.

The market can be slow to adjust on some young pitchers and the stuff is good enough (15.4% swinging strike rate in Triple-A) for me to believe in his ability to miss bats. It hasn't quite shown up through two starts, but he projects better going forward.

If Williams faces 21 hitters at his 24% projected strikeout number — based on the Braves expected lineup — I'd project him for 5.04 Ks. I'd bet over 4.5 strikeouts at -125 or better on Monday night.

Pick: Gavin Williams Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-122)

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