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Friday MLB Odds & Best Bets: Our Favorite Picks, Including Mariners vs. Astros

Friday MLB Odds & Best Bets: Our Favorite Picks, Including Mariners vs. Astros article feature image
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Cooper Neill/MLB Photos via Getty Images. Pictured: Alex Bregman.

  • The weekend starts early with plenty of MLB action on Friday.
  • Our staff sees value on two games: Giants vs. Guardians and Mariners vs. Astros.
  • Check out all three of our best bets for Friday's games below.

Friday’s MLB slate featured plenty of midday action, but we’re looking to start the weekend off right with the night games.

Our action starts in Cleveland as Zach Plesac and the Guardians take on Carlos Rodon and the Giants. A couple of hours later, we’ll head south to Houston to see Julio Rodriguez and the Mariners go to battle against Alex Bregman and the Astros — and we have two bets for that nightcap.

So, lock in for a fun night of baseball. Here’s to starting the second weekend of the young season out on the right foot.


MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
San Francisco Giants vs. Cleveland Guardians
7:10 p.m. ET
Seattle Mariners vs. Houston Astros
9:42 p.m. ET
Seattle Mariners vs. Houston Astros
9:42 p.m. ET

San Francisco Giants vs. Cleveland Guardians

Pick
Under 8
Book
BetMGM
Pitchers
Carlos Rodon vs. Zach Plesac
First Pitch
9:42 p.m. ET

Jules Posner: The Cleveland Guardians are set to take on the San Francisco Giants in their home opener Friday night. Both teams are off to 4-2 starts heading into this interleague match up.

The big surprise of the season so far has been the Guardians offense. They lead MLB in runs scored and team wRC+, which is a far cry from where they were last season.

The San Francisco Giants have been anchored by solid starting pitching so far in 2022. Although their offense has been above average at creating scoring opportunities, they have struggled to convert those opportunities in the early going.

With the exception of a blowout win on Tuesday night, all of the Giants’ wins have been by one run so far in 2022.

The Guardians offense has been explosive, but it’s much easier to be explosive when you take on the Kansas City Royals’ and Cincinnati Reds’ young pitching staffs.

The San Francisco Giants have Carlos Rodon on the hill for Friday night’s game and he was absolutely electric in his team debut. This will be the Guardians’ first true challenge of the season. Rodon pitched like an ace, while the Guardians struggled against the likes of Zach Greinke and Mitch Keller to open the season.

On the other side, Zach Plesac is a solid starting pitcher at home. Giants offense has struggled a little bit out of the gates, and a lot of that has to do with missing some LH bats that allow them to leverage platoons.

Considering this pitching matchup and the Giants not being at full strength offensively, this could be a low scoring affair. The under is set at 8 around -110 and should be a solid play even if it moves to 7.5.

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Seattle Mariners vs. Houston Astros

Pick
Over 8.5
Book
Caesars
Pitchers
Marco Gonzales vs. Jake Odorizzi
First Pitch
9:42 p.m. ET

Charlie DiSturco: The Mariners welcome the Astros in an AL West bout that should be exciting — if you like offense.

Starting with the home team, the Mariners hand the ball to southpaw Marco Gonzales, who was forced out after just two innings in his season debut against the Twins. He finished the game giving up six runs (two earned) in just two innings of work.

Gonzales has trended downward since a strong 2020 campaign. Last season, he had a 5.05 xERA, 5.16 xFIP and ranked in the bottom 6% of all pitchers in max exit velocity. Hitters had no problem torching the lefty who battled control issues and gave up nearly two home runs per nine.

This all happened while he left 82% of batters on base. The problem there? That was actually a career-best for Gonzales, who averages about 10% lower from year to year, signaling a potential for negative regression for an already struggling pitcher.

Houston’s Jake Odorizzi has been better than Gonzales, but he’s by no means unhittable. In his first year with the Astros, the right-hander posted a 4.66 xERA and rarely pitched deep into ball games. He didn’t look particularly sharp against the Angels in his 2022 debut either despite giving up just two runs on six hits over four innings.

To me, this is the perfect game to back an over. The line is currently 8.5, and I like this number up to 9. We’re getting two pitchers that grade out poorly when it comes to advanced metrics against two capable offenses.

Expect the ball to be flying around the park in Seattle on Friday night.


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Seattle Mariners vs. Houston Astros

Pick
Astros ML -120
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Marco Gonzales vs. Jake Odorizzi
First Pitch
9:42 p.m. ET

DJ James: The Astros will travel to Seattle to take on the Mariners in the opener of a three-game set. Jake Odorizzi will throw for Houston with Marco Gonzales going for the Mariners.

Seattle is coming off of a lost series in Chicago with the White Sox, and Gonzales did not look too sharp in his first outing. Odorizzi limited a potent top of the order for the Angels to only two runs. Even if he’s not the best pitcher, the starters here are a wash.

The edge is the ability of Houston to hit lefties hard.

The Astros have not done so this season, but the sample size is small. They have an elite set of veterans who can handle a soft-tosser like Gonzales. Houston held a 117 wRC+ collectively against southpaws last season.

Typically, avoiding a team that has not quite turned it on yet may be the correct move, but this lineup is stacked from top to bottom, and outside of Carlos Correa going to the Twins, the rest has not changed all that much. This team had eight batters with a 100+ wRC+ while facing lefties last year.

In addition, Gonzales throws his sinker around 88 MPH and uses it over 40% of the time. On similar sinkers and fastballs, six of the players in their current lineup boasted a .400+ xwOBA. The average exit velocity for five of them was over 90 MPH.

The Stros will crush Gonzales, and Odorizzi being on the hill will not hinder that. Take Houston to -145.

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