MLB Odds, Predictions & Best Bets: Our Top Picks for Monday, Featuring Blue Jays vs. Orioles & Nationals vs. Cubs (Aug. 8)
Matt Dirksen/Getty Images. Pictured: Willson Contreras.
- Monday's MLB slate is small, with only 14 teams in action.
- However, our staff still found betting value on two games for Monday, including Blue Jays vs. Orioles and Nationals vs. Cubs.
- Check out both of our best bets below, including a breakdown for both games.
Monday’s MLB slate is not a big one. With only seven games on the docket, less than half of all major league teams will take the field on this early-August Monday.
But that doesn’t mean those 14 teams don’t hold betting value. Our staff hand-picked two best bets for Monday’s games, including a moneyline play for Blue Jays vs. Orioles and a run-line bet for Nationals vs. Cubs.
Read on for both of our best bets for Monday, and check back tomorrow for even more action on a loaded Tuesday slate.
MLB Odds & Picks
Blue Jays vs. Orioles
Sean Zerillo: While Baltimore’s Jordan Lyles (5.04 xERA, 4.45 xFIP, 4.40 SIERA) remains uninspiring, he has found more success this season — relative to prior years — by altering his pitch mix with more sinkers and changeups.
Conversely, Toronto’s Yusei Kikuchi (5.82 xERA, 4.36 xFIP, 4.32 SIERA) has posted the highest walk rate (13%) amongst starting pitchers and presents significant blowup potential in each of his outings.
When he has his command, Kikuchi can have dominant outings. More often than not, however, he struggles to locate his pitches, puts free runners on base and then gives up a bomb (career 1.66 HR/9).
I bet the Orioles overnight at +133 and played their first five innings (F5) moneyline at +125. I recommended those wagers down to +117 and +110, respectively.
After updating specific inputs this morning, I changed my projection slightly and would now place those bets down to +116 and +108, respectively.
As a result, I currently show value on the Orioles’ moneyline in either half of Monday’s contest, making them small F5 favorites and coin-flip underdogs for the whole game.
Nationals vs. Cubs
Jules Posner: The Cubs open up a three-game series against the Nationals on Monday night.
Although the Cubs have had their struggles this season, they’re coming off a series victory at home over the Marlins, and their offense has been one of the better units against right-handed pitching over the past couple of weeks.
Now that the trade deadline has passed and Cubs players could go about their business, things might be less tense in the clubhouse. However, their home offense has not really been the issue for them this season.
Keegan Thompson will make the start for the Cubs, and he’s been solid at home this season. He owns a 2.50 ERA, a 2.73 FIP and a 3.77 xFIP across 57 2/3 home innings. Those are solid marks.
Speaking of solid, Anibal Sanchez, the Nationals’ starter, has been the opposite of solid so far this season. So, he’s been liquid? So far, he’s posted a 7.65 ERA, 7.01 FIP and 5.27 xFIP this season. Those are… not solid.
The Nationals offense is also without Juan Soto and Josh Bell, so that’s a huge blow. They haven’t won a game since the trade deadline.
The Cubs’ run line opened in plus money, and that looks to be the play in this game. If you can still snag the Cubs at -1.5 for +120 or better, that’s the move. However, their run line should be in play as long as it remains in plus money.