MLB Expert Predictions for Monday: How to Play the Over/Under in Cardinals-Dodgers

MLB Expert Predictions for Monday: How to Play the Over/Under in Cardinals-Dodgers article feature image
Credit:

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Max Muncy, Cody Bellinger

  • Our MLB experts examine their four favorite bets for Monday night, including the St. Louis Cardinals at Los Angeles Dodgers (10:10 p.m. ET)

Sean Zerillo: St. Louis Cardinals at Los Angeles Dodgers

Michael Wacha (6-4, 5.15 ERA) vs. Tony Gonsolin (0-1, 5.63 ERA)

  • Cardinals Moneyline: 148
  • Dodgers Moneyline: -158
  • Over/Under: 9.5
  • First pitch: 10:10 p.m. ET


Tony Gonsolin and Michael Wacha aren’t the typical pitchers to inspire the public to bet the under on an MLB game, and you’d be right; as of writing, more than 65% of the tickets and 70% of the money being bet on the total in this game is backing the over.

The total did rise from 9.0 to 9.5, but the under is now juiced at -115. I projected the total at 8.2 runs and was happy to play the under with the hook at 9.5.

I would note that Michael Wacha has a 4.42 xFIP since the beginning of June, but I’m not going to try to sell you on either pitcher – you’ll be sweating when either one is on the mound.

Take solace in the fact that Dodger Stadium has a run-scoring environment about 11% below league-average, one of the five friendliest parks for pitchers.

Additionally, this game also fits my favorite system for unders, which has hit at a 54.8% rate (+9 units, 7% ROI) in 2019, going 8-2-2 at Dodger Stadium:

The PICK: Under 9.5

Danny Donahue: New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles

Masahiro Tanaka (7-6, 4.78 ERA) vs. Gabriel Ynoa (1-6, 5.55 ERA)

  • Yankees Moneyline: -250
  • Orioles Moneyline: +225
  • Over/Under: 10.5
  • First pitch: 7:05 p.m. ET

I’m prepared to feel like a real dummy in a few hours, but for now I’ve got plenty of reasons to think that the Orioles are worth a bet tonight against the Yanks.

Fading the elite teams (.600 or better) in the second half of the season has been profitable in years past, and the Orioles happen to fit just about every description of an especially profitable team in this spot.

They’re a divisional underdog receiving 20% or less bets (17% at the time of writing), and they’re coming off at least one win, providing casual bettors the incorrect narrative that “they’re due” for a loss.

When all the mentioned scenarios line up on the same team, those clubs have gone 85-95 since 2005, but have won 56.3 units for a 31.3% ROI.

The PICK: Orioles +225

John Ewing: New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles

Masahiro Tanaka (7-6, 4.78 ERA) vs. Gabriel Ynoa (1-6, 5.55 ERA)

  • Yankees Moneyline: -250
  • Orioles Moneyline: +225
  • Over/Under: 10.5
  • First pitch: 7:05 p.m. ET

The Yankees enter Monday on a five-game winning streak after sweeping the Red Sox over the weekend. New York has a comfortable eight-game lead in the AL East. Casual bettors would expect the Yanks to cruise past the Orioles but history says Baltimore could be undervalued.

As Danny noted above, it has been profitable to bet bad teams (won 40% or less of games) against good teams (won at least 60% of games) in the second half of the season.

This strategy works because oddsmakers inflate lines against great teams in the second half of the season, especially against the worst clubs.

Here’s the thing, the O’s aren’t playing all that bad lately. Baltimore is 14-14 in their past 28 games and have won or split its last three series. Underdogs of +200 or greater don’t often win but the Orioles have a puncher’s chance to cash for bettors tonight.

The PICK: Orioles +225

Mark Gallant: Kansas City Royals at Boston Red Sox

Mike Montgomery (1-4, 6.34 ERA) vs. Rick Porcello (9-8, 5.74 ERA)

  • Royals Moneyline: +225
  • Red Sox Moneyline: -255
  • Over/Under: 11.5
  • First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET

The Red Sox are a super-popular bet tonight, but I really don’t understand why. I think people just assume that their losing streak to come to an end because:

A) They’re the World Series champs
2) “Good” teams are more likely to win after a loss or multiple consecutive losses
D) The Royals Suck

As a result, the Royals’ line has ballooned from around +180 to +225 since opening.

Similar to a small child, I like balloons. Historically, teams with less than 20% of bets and a moneyline that has gone up at least 30 cents have yielded a 16.8% ROI. I’m going to bank on K.C. to keep the Red Sox down in the dumps at this inflated price.

The PICK: Royals +225

Evan Abrams: Toronto Blue Jays at Tampa Bay Rays

Jacob Waguespack (2-1, 4.80 ERA) vs. Charlie Morton (12-3, 2.78 ERA)

  • Blue Jays Moneyline: +230
  • Rays Moneyline: -260
  • Over/Under: 8
  • First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET

The Rays have won six straight games and eight of their last nine, so it’s not surprising to see them as a big favorite behind Charlie Morton against the Blue Jays tonight.

This will be Morton’s second start against the Jays this season, but the first one was against a very different Toronto lineup.

Morton has a 2.78 ERA this season, with virtually the same home and road splits across the board. Recently though, Morton has looked mortal, allowing 11 earned runs in his last 17.1 innings pitched.

That is one part of the bet, the second part has to do with the surging Jays’ offense. Toronto is averaging 4.48 runs per game this season (22nd), but over their last nine games, the Blue Jays are averaging 7.1 runs per game. Yes, Toronto is facing a different animal in Morton, but I think there is value in their team total and the run line on Monday night.

The PICK: Blue Jays First-5-Innings Team Total Over 1.5 (+115), Blue Jays +1.5 (+110)