MLB Odds, Picks: Our 4 Monday Best Bets for Yankees vs. Blue Jays, Mariners vs. Astros, More (May 2)
Megan Briggs/Getty Images. Pictured: J.P. Crawford
- Marlins-Diamondbacks, Twins-Orioles, Yankees-Blue Jays and Mariners-Astros have all caught the eyes of our MLB experts.
- We have picks on those four games among the eight on today's schedule.
- Continue reading for full analysis and betting picks from tonight's MLB slate.
Despite the smaller slate, our analysts have found plenty of value across the board, with four picks on four different games. Those include favorites, underdogs and a player prop.
Here are our four best bets from Monday’s MLB slate.
MLB Odds & Picks
Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Miami Marlins
Jules Posner: Monday night’s showdown between Arizona Diamondbacks’ Zac Gallen and Miami Marlins’ Pablo Lopez may be the pitching duel of the year so far in 2022. Both pitchers have been at the top of their games and the baseball world is pretty jazzed about this game.
Speaking of jazz, Gallen may be coming into this matchup with a chip on his shoulder as he was traded from the Marlins to the Diamondbacks for Jazz Chisholm, which may be one of the most fair trades ever.
Gallen brings a 0.60 ERA, 2.18 FIP and 3.84 xFIP into his second road start of the season, where he is unscored upon over four innings.
However, he’s taking on a Marlins offense that is third in team wRC+ at home so far this season (135), which puts them ahead of teams like the Mets, Dodgers and Blue Jays.
Lopez has been the best starting pitcher in the majors so far in 2022 and he has been dominant at home over the past few seasons. Over his career, he’s posted a 2.89 ERA, 3.15 FIP and 3.58 xFIP at home, but since 2020 his home ERA has hovered around the 2.5 mark and his home FIP isn’t far behind.
So far at this season, he’s been unscored upon at home and rarely scored upon in any situation.
Although Arizona’s offense has been improving, the Snakes are still a below-average unit, despite averaging four runs per game in their last series in St. Louis.
Both bullpens are bottom third units and that may end up being the difference in this game. However, the Marlins have the slight edge overall. The Marlins moneyline is around -160 in most books, which isn’t the best value, but this game may be a tight one. The moneyline is the safe play here.
Minnesota Twins vs. Baltimore Orioles
Sean Zerillo: I’m not a Chris Paddack hater, but I’ve been highly skeptical of his pitch mix and overall effectiveness before this season. However, he’s doing things differently since arriving in Minnesota near the end of spring training, and I’m beginning to buy some Paddack stock.
From 2019 to 2021, Paddack threw his fastball and changeup a combined 86-89% of the time, on average. This season, through three starts, the combined usage is down to 75%, and in his most recent start against the Tigers, it was down to 71%.
Moreover, in that most recent outing, Paddack only threw his fastball 42.5% of the time — just the fourth time in 64 career appearances where it fell below 50% and the first time below 45%.
While reducing his fastball usage, Paddack is now throwing his curveball (21.2%, vs. 11% career) and cutter (3.9%, vs. 1.5% career) more often than ever before. And even if those aren’t the most compelling offerings, it’s still providing opposing hitters with different looks while forcing them to stop sitting on his heater.
Furthermore, after looking at heat maps, it’s apparent that Paddack is making a more concerted effort to focus his effort up in the zone — at the letters — instead of trying to paint corners.
He’s only walked one batter in 14 2/3 innings and has yet to allow a home run (career 1.39 HR/9). You can expect regression in both categories, but Paddack’s groundball rate (51.2%) is nine points above his career average, and his .356 BABIP should eventually move back toward his career mark (.279).
I like everything I see from Paddack this season and have upgraded his projection substantially. I show a significant edge on the Twins First Five Innings Moneyline (projected 68% or -214 implied), and you can play the line up to -190 (65.5% implied), though I doubt the number closes anywhere near that range.
New York Yankees vs. Toronto Blue Jays
Doug Ziefel: If you look a Giancarlo Stanton’s numbers, they are pretty typical of what we see out of him. He’s in the 100th percentile in average exit velocity and max exit velocity. He’s also in the top five percent of the league in hard-hit rate and barrel percentage.
There is one thing that is off from Stanton’s typical statistics, however. To this point in the season, his splits are reversed. He is known for mashing left-handed pitching over the course of his career, but this year he’s hitting just .160 against lefties. A large majority of that hard contact has come against righties as he’s hitting .298 against them.
Tonight he’ll face a right-hander in Ross Stripling who he has not seen much of, but in the 10 times the two have squared off, Stanton has gotten the better of the matchup twice. One was a homer, and the other was a double.
Stripling is a guy who produces a lot of soft contact but not many strikeouts. We know when Stanton puts the ball in play, it’s going to be walloped, and with him seeing the ball much better from righties thus far, I think he has an excellent chance to make an impact in this game.
Seattle Mariners vs. Houston Astros
Kenny Ducey: I simply cannot believe, in the year 2022, I am fading the Houston Astros in a game started by Marco Gonzales. The fact of the matter is, Houston has been terrible this season and Gonzales has been shockingly competent.
The left-hander is the owner of a .435 xwOBA on contact, which would certainly indicate he’s worse than he’s ever been. Despite that, he’s seen a marginal half-point increase in his hard-hit rate and improved strikeout and walk rates. The issue with Gonzales has always been that he won’t miss bats, and will compound walks with dangerous contact.
While he probably deserves a bit worse than a sub-four ERA, he’s done some good things. One of those good things was shutting down the Astros the last time he saw them, allowing just one earned run over seven frames with six strikeouts in his second outing of the year.
That’s been a theme for Houston, though, which ranks 18th in wRC+. Aside from a few explosive nights at the plate, it has been a thoroughly disappointing team on offense.
Enter Gonzales and Astros starter Jake Odorizzi, and I think the Mariners should actually be favored here. The righty has been dealing with big-time walk issues, issuing free passes to 11.6% of hitters and striking out just 13%. The Mariners rank top five in wRC+ and first in walk rate.