Saturday MLB Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Houston Astros (Sept. 19)

Credit:

Harry How/Getty Images. Pictured: Diamondbacks starting pitcher Luke Weaver (24).

  • The Houston Astros take on the Arizona Diamondbacks tonight at 7:10 p.m. ET.
  • The Astros are motivated to improve their playoff positioning, while the D-Backs have nothing to play for, having recently been mathematically eliminated from postseason contention.
  • BJ Cunningham breaks down tonight's MLB matchup and formally advises fading Luke Weaver and the Arizona bullpen.

Diamondbacks vs. Astros Odds

Diamondbacks Odds +155 [Bet Now]
Astros Odds -182 [Bet Now]
Over/Under 9 (-113/-108) [Bet Now]
First Pitch 7:10 p.m. ET

Odds as of Saturday at 5 p.m. ET and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.


Houston looks improve its sixth-seed position in the playoff picture on Saturday night against Luke Weaver and Diamondbacks. The Astros lineup is finally healthy and looking to turn things around offensively. Meanwhile, Arizona’s season is over as the D-Backs have been mathematically eliminated from the playoff picture.

Advanced Stats Glossary

FIP or Fielding Independent Pitching measures what a pitcher’s ERA would look like if the pitcher experienced league-average defense and luck. xFIP  is a regressed version of FIP that adjusts or “normalizes’ the home run component based on park factors.

wRC+ or Weighted Runs Created Plus takes the statistic Runs Created and adjusts that number to account for critical external factors — like ballpark or era. It’s adjusted, so a wRC+ of 100 is league average, and 150 would be 50 percent above league average.

wOBA or Weighted On-Base Average is a catch-all hitting metric with more predictive value than on-base percentage. An average MLB hitter can be expected to post a .320 wOBA. xwOBA is a regressed version of wOBA that accounts for variables like park factors.

BaseRuns is a formula designed to estimate how many runs a team would be expected to score (or allow) given their underlying offensive (or defensive) performance. In other words, BaseRuns is a context-neutral run estimator used to evaluate teams. Major League average for an individual batter per game is 0.50 BaseRuns and a for a pitcher its 0.52 BaseRuns per inning.

Diamondbacks Probable Starter

Luke Weaver, RHP

Projected & Actual Stats (via Fangraphs)

Pitch Arsenal (via Baseball Savant)

Luke Weaver has been an unmitigated catastrophe this season. He’s accumulated an ERA of 6.70 and an xFIP of 5.23 through 41.2 innings. Weaver’s main issue has been his fastball, which has allowed a .329 batting average and .429 wOBA to the opposition.

He’s also had a big-time issue giving up the long ball, as his HR/9 rate is all the way up to 1.91 this year. Weaver’s secondary pitches haven’t been effective either, with his cumulative arsenal allowing a wOBA over .350.

Houston Astros

Houston has struggled offensively, accumulating a .311 wOBA and 98 wRC+. Kyle Tucker and George Springer have been bright spots in the Astros lineup, combining for 20 home runs and 66 RBIs. Even though Houston has struggled offensively this year, I think they’ll be able to get to Weaver and the D-Backs’ bullpen tonight.

Bullpens

Arizona’s bullpen has struggled mightily this season, recording a 4.76 ERA. The Diamondbacks’ relievers have combined for a 5.01 xFIP, which ranks in the bottom-five in MLB. The team dealt Archie Bradley and Andrew Chafin — its best relievers — at the trade deadline, so the bullpen is very weak at the moment.

Projections and Pick

Check out our new MLB PRO Report, where we highlight factors that provide betting edges — like large wagers, historically profitable betting systems, model projections and expert picks — that when combined with sharp money can powerfully detail the smartest bets on a given slate.

With Weaver on the mound, I think the Astros have a fantastic matchup offensively. I have Houston projected for 5.97 runs today, so I am going to target their team total of Over 4.5 runs at -134 (DraftKings). However, I would only bet it up to -138.

Pick: Astros team total over 4.5 (-134).

[Bet the Astros team total now at DraftKings and get a $1,000 bonus, including a $500 risk-free bet]

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