Tuesday’s MLB Betting Odds, Expert Picks, Predictions: 5 Best Bets, Including Angels vs. Yankees, Rangers vs. Athletics & More (June 29)
Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images. Pictured: Matt Olson
- Angels-Yankees. Mariners-Blue Jays. Diamondbacks-Cardinals. Rangers-Athletics.
- With plenty of games on tap tonight, our staff has found plenty of value on the board.
- Continue reading for our staff's best bets from Tuesday's MLB slate.
We’ve got overs, we’ve got unders, we’ve got plus money underdogs, and we even have a No Runs First Inning bet. Here are our five best bets from Tuesday’s MLB slate.
MLB Odds & Picks
Angels vs. Yankees
Kenny Ducey: Jameson Taillon is a pitcher who’s always been a positive regression candidate this year thanks to an expected ERA that’s a full run lower than his real-life mark of 5.18. There are obviously some real concerns here, like a barrel rate nearing 10% and a home park that could assist even me in hitting a few homers. There’s also the fact, though, that this guy has turned in two straight solid outings.
He will face an Angels lineup that has gone ice-cold over the past week, hitting .198 and posting just a 66 wRC+. I like this matchup for him against a team that has also struck out more against righties than against lefties.
That’s one half of our under, and the other half is that the Yankees have historically struggled against lefties, dating back the last couple of years. They’ve garnered some pretty high totals over the last week with better hitting, but this isn’t one with much value in taking the over. Expect New York to continue struggling against lefties, and for Taillon to keep finding it against the Angels.
Angels vs. Yankees
Tanner McGrath: The Angels and Yankees are two high-powered offenses that will often draw juiced totals, and Andrew Heaney and Jameson Taillon won’t knock your socks off, but I think 10 runs is a tad high in this spot.
Three reasons why:
First: Taillon has been due for regression all season and is a much better pitcher at home. He pairs his 5.18 ERA with a 4.34 FIP and a 4.19 xERA, and while he’s posted an atrocious 11.12 ERA in five away starts this season, he’s got a 3.04 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP in nine home starts this year.
Second: Heaney’s numbers drop away from Angel Stadium and his strikeout tendencies should work in his favor here. Heaney’s posted a 5.45 ERA in seven home starts this season, but a 3.90 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP in six road starts. His biggest attribute is missing bats, as he ranks in the 79th percentile among qualified pitchers in whiff rate and is striking out more than 11 batters per nine. He should be able to notch quite a few punchouts against a Yankees lineup that whiffs at a high rate.
Third: Both of these offenses are overvalued given their recent performances in this spot. Over the past two weeks and against southpaws at home, the Yankees rank 23rd in wRC+ (80). They’re batting just .133 in that span with a .644 OPS and a .287 wOBA. Plus, they’re striking out 34.2% of the time, good for second in this category.
Meanwhile, over that same timeframe but against right-handers on the road, the Angels rank 21st in wRC+ (82). They’re batting just .206 during this stretch with a .671 OPS and a .286 wOBA. They also are striking out over 28% of the time, good for fourth in this category.
- The Action PRO report shows we’ve tracked sharp money coming in on the under, with the under receiving just 46% of the tickets but 77% of the handle.
- The Action PRO projections have this total listed at around 9.7, meaning there’s a bit of value to be found on the under 10 number.
- We have an under-leaning umpire on the mound in Dan Iassogna, who is 245-221 to the under in his lifetime (52.6%, +12.91u).
I’ll happily play the under 10 at anything better than -120.
Mariners vs. Blue Jays
Collin Whitchurch: I continue to be bullish on Chris Flexen, who looks like quite the find for Seattle after spending 2020 with the Doosan Bears in the KBO. The 26-year-old isn’t an extreme bat-misser like his counterpart on Tuesday, but he limits free passes and does a solid job of keeping the ball on the ground and, as a result, in the yard.
Flexen changed his pitch mix quite a bit this year compared to his previous, unsuccessful MLB stint. He didn’t add velo — in fact, his average fastball is down a few mph — but he’s throwing it less often and relying on a newly discovered cutter more than ever. Flexen was throwing his fastball more than half of the time in the past, but that usage is down to 37 percent and the cutter is being thrown 27 percent of the time. It’s helped him turn into a true four-offering pitcher, and he even mixes in a slider a bit to give him a fifth and help keep hitters off-balance.
The Blue Jays’ offense is fierce, but Flexen presents a challenge in that they’re below-average for the season against cutters, and it will be an interesting matchup for a team with a high HR/FB rate and low groundball rate against a guy who induces balls hit on the ground about half the time.
I like Flexen’s chances, and while Robbie Ray’s transformation into bat-missing monster who actually seems to know where the ball is going when he throws it for the first time in his career seems legit, I think Seattle can keep pace at least for the first half of the game. There’s CERTAINLY a better chance than the 33.3 percent these implied odds suggest. I’ll ride with the Mariners at +200 for the first five innings and would bet it down to +185.
Diamondbacks vs. Cardinals
Jeff Hicks: Since rejoining the Diamondbacks’ rotation in June, Caleb Smith has not allowed a first inning run. The Cardinals average 0.61 runs in the opening frame, but the average dips to 0.51 at home.
Carlos Martinez is more likely to give up a run in the first. His range of runs allowed in the first ranges from 0 to 11. I am putting faith in the former All-Star; he shut down Arizona to open their game May 27. The D’backs average 0.44 first inning runs overall and 0.52 runs in road games.
Arizona has a 71 wRC+ against right-handers in road games. I believe Smith can get through the top of the St. Louis lineup unscathed despite its 130 wRC+ at home against southpaws. Smith has limited right-handed hitters to a .188/.316/.391 slash line. That covers the potential of facing Paul Goldschmidt, Nolan Arenado and Tyler O’Neill should Tommy Edman or Dylan Carlson reach base.
Rangers vs. Athletics
Brad Cunningham: James Kaprielian has been good on paper so far, he’s got a 2.86 ERA, opponents are only hitting .190 against him and he has 1.11 WHIP. But when you dive into some of his advanced metrics he’s a guy who screams negative regression. His xERA is at 3.79, his xFIP is almost two runs higher than his ERA at 4.68 and he’s giving a ton of hard contact.
Kaprielian is also mainly a fastball pitcher, as he goes to it more than 50% of the time, but he hasn’t been that great with it because opposing hitters have a .368 wOBA against it this season. While the Rangers’ offense hasn’t been great this season, the one pitch they’ve actually had some success against is fastballs, as they rank 14th in MLB with 11.5 weighted slider runs. In fact, 38 of the Rangers’ 87 home runs this season have come off of fastballs, so it’s a good matchup for a struggling offense.
Mike Foltynewicz has been terrible for the Rangers, as his xERA and xFIP are well over five. He’s having issues keeping the ball inside the yard, as his HR/9 rate is at 2.03, and he’s struggling with pretty much his entire pitch arsenal, as everything but his slider is allowing an xwOBA over .350. Oakland ranks 12th against righties in terms of wOBA and will have a fantastic matchup against Foltynewicz’s three main pitches of fastball, slider, and sinker. The A’s are top 10 against both fastballs and sliders and they have five guys in their lineup with a xwOBA over .380.