MLB Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: New York Mets vs. Toronto Blue Jays (Friday, Sept. 11)
Al Bello/Getty Images. Pictured: Jacob deGrom.
- The New York Mets are 2.5 games out from a playoff spot in MLB's expanded 2020 postseason format.
- The Amazins enter Friday's game against the Blue Jays as -215 favorites with Cy Young Award contender Jacob deGrom on the mound.
- Michael Arinze argues why the real betting value is on Toronto on Friday night.
Mets vs. Blue Jays Odds
|Mets Odds||-215 [Bet Now]|
|Blue Jays Odds||+170 [Bet Now]|
|Over/Under||8.5 (-120/+100) [Bet Now]|
|First Pitch||6:37 p.m. ET|
With Major League Baseball playing a shortened season, the 2020 playoff push is guaranteed to be a wild ride. I don’t know about you, but one of the first things I do every morning is to check the standings and, more importantly, the Wild Card race. This year’s playoff format guarantees postseason baseball for every division leader, two wild cards per league and all division runners-up.
The New York Mets are 2.5 games behind for the final playoff spot with just 16 games left in their season. Meanwhile their opponent, the Toronto Blue Jays, has a two-game lead for second place in the AL East.
The Mets will send out their ace, Jacob deGrom, in the series opener, and the Blue Jays will counter with Chase Anderson.
New York opened as a -175 favorite, and they’ve already been bet up to -200 at some sportsbooks. However, that line movement is starting to create significant value in the other direction with the dog.
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New York Mets
If I had a Cy Young vote, it would go to Jacob deGrom. The Mets right-hander has been the epitome of consistency this season. DeGrom is 3-1 with a 1.69 ERA and 0.88 WHIP. He’s racked up 70 strikeouts in just 48 innings and he’s yet to allow more than two runs in his eight starts this season.
While his 2.03 FIP is higher than his ERA, any regression for this pitcher will be marginal at best. For one, deGrom is actually throwing harder in his seventh season than at any previous point in his career. Per Baseball Savant, his four-seamer is averaging 98.4 mph, which is 1.5 mph faster than it was last year. That increase in velocity has generated a 12% increase in his whiff rate.
There’s no end to the superlatives one can bestow on Jacob deGrom, but the fact of the matter is that he’s not an infinite resource. Degrom is averaging six innings pitched per appearance, and at some point the Mets bullpen is likely to factor in the game. While they’ve been better of late, the Mets relievers still rank in the bottom-half of MLB with a 4.24 ERA.
At the current price, bettors are paying a premium on deGrom, but it would be a disservice to discount the impact the Mets bullpen could have in this game.
Toronto Blue Jays
Chase Anderson will make his seventh start this season. He hasn’t pitched more than five innings in any game this season and that’s partly why he hasn’t factored in any of the decisions. Through six starts, he has a 4.94 ERA with a 1.44 WHIP. After Toronto had a scheduled day off yesterday, the Blue Jays bullpen should be well positioned to handle some extra workload if Anderson has another short outing.
Anderson’s 4.91 FIP is similarly close to his ERA, so he’s probably right around where he’s going to be. At best he’s an average pitcher, but his teams have had success when going up against the Mets.
For his career, Anderson’s teams are 5-2 against New York. If you take a look at the current Mets lineup, they’ve had 46 at-bats against Anderson and are hitting .196 with a .302 OBP.
The fact that Anderson has yet to figure in any decision suggests to me that his games are being decided in the middle and later innings. That highlights the importance of the Blue Jays bullpen, and they’ve been up to the challenge thus far. Note that Toronto’s bullpen is ranked third in the league with a 3.27 ERA, and they’re actually first in all of baseball with a 3.2 WAR rating.
Betting Analysis & Pick
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I want to be clear on something. It’s not that I think the Mets won’t win this game. I’m just saying I wouldn’t look to bet them at the current number. I mentioned that Anderson’s teams are 5-2 against the Mets, but they’ve also won his last four outings.
This season, favorites that have closed with a moneyline between -190 and -200 are 7-10 with a loss of 12.52 units whereas underdogs that have closed with a moneyline between +170 and +180 are 13-13 for 9.83 units.
Something else intrigued me when I looked at Anderson’s game log: Five of his six starts this season have been one-run games.
While the standard metrics might grade him as just average, Toronto’s bullpen has done a good job of limiting the damage or keeping games close.
At FanDuel, we can grab a plus-price on the run line with the Blue Jays at +112. I think think that’s worth a look here as this game should be a close one down the stretch.
I’ll take Toronto for a half-unit to keep the game within a run against the Mets ace deGrom.
The Pick: Blue Jays run line +112. Risk: 0.5 units. Play down to -105.