MLB Odds, Expert Picks, Predictions: 4 Best Bets for Orioles vs. Rays, Mets vs. Giants & More (Monday, August 16)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images. Pictured: Luis Rojas, Brandon Drury and Kevin Pillar.
- With a new week upon us, our MLB analysts have plenty of bets to recommend.
- There are 10 games tonight, and we have angles on four of them.
- Continue reading for our staff's best bets from Monday's MLB slate.
With 10 games on the slate, our analysts have found plenty of angles with value, including Orioles vs. Rays, Indians vs. Twins, Athletics vs. White Sox and Mets vs. Giants
Here are our four best bets from Monday’s MLB slate.
MLB Odds & Picks
Orioles vs. Rays
Sean Zerillo: Collin McHugh will only pitch a few innings at the start of this game, but he has still been tremendous (1.93 xERA, 2.57 xFIP, 2.25 SIERA) in 25 appearances this season. Tampa Bay increased McHugh’s slider usage to a career-high 51.1% (up 28% from 2018), while swapping out his four-seam fastball for cutters.
Matt Harvey remains a disaster (5.45 xERA, 4.84 xFIP, 4.88 SIERA) but he has been better of late, carrying a 3.50 FIP through his past six starts. Even using a worst-case scenario projection for Harvey, there is still value on the under in this matchup.
Tropicana Field remains one of the more underrated pitchers parks in baseball. Since 2005, totals listed at 8.5 or higher at The Trop have gone under at a 54.9% clip (326-267-23), good for a $3,824 profit for a consistent $100 bettor (6.2% ROI).
I projected this total closer to 8 for Monday night, even with Harvey starting, and I was able to bet the under at 9 before it moved down to 8.5. You can still bet the under at the current number, up to -110.
Indians vs. Twins
Brad Cunningham: Cal Quantrill has made the move to the starting rotation and his numbers have been very average this season, posting a 4.39 xERA. But he’s been pitching really well over his past six starts, only giving up a total of 22 hits and six runs in 42 innings. He mainly utilizes a sinker/slider combination, which will come in handy against a Twins lineup that has a combined -26.5 run value against those two pitches.
Griffin Jax is probably wishing he was born with a different last name because he’s been dreadful in his 38 innings in the big leagues, posting a 5.33 xFIP. Jax is giving up jacks left and right as his HR/9 rate is a shockingly high 2.37. He mainly utilizes a fastball/slider combination, but his fastball has been his biggest issue, allowing a .391 xwOBA, and the Indians’ lineup has been hitting fastballs well over the past 30 days with a +4.3 run value.
The bullpen matchup is also a complete mismatch, Cleveland has an outstanding ‘pen, ranking in the top six in ERA, K/9 rate, and LOB%, while Minnesota ranks in the bottom 10 in all of those categories.
Athletics vs. White Sox
Mike Ianniello: The Oakland A’s are getting hot at the perfect time. As we begin the playoff push, they sit 2.5 games behind Houston for the AL West lead and tied with the Red Sox for a top wild-card spot.
Oakland is 9-3 since the start of August and the offense, which has been streaky all season, is red-hot once again. Over the last month, the A’s rank ninth in wOBA and fourth in wRC+. The deadline trade for Starling Marte has given them a huge boost; he is batting .383 with a .946 OPS with 11 stolen bases in 15 games since joining the Athletics.
Frankie Montas had a couple duds early in the year but has really settled in and found a groove. Since July 1, he has just a 2.42 ERA and has pitched into the sixth inning in each of his seven starts.
On the other side, 33-year-old Dallas Keuchel has an xERA of 5.93 and ranks in the bottom-six percent of the league in xERA, xwOBA, xBA and K%. Kuechel has one of the lowest strikeout rates in the league and Oakland has the fifth-lowest strikeout rate in the league.
Oakland has the starting pitching advantage, backed with a lineup that has been hitting the ball better recently, so I’ll back the A’s at -120 in the first five innings and would play it to -125.
Mets vs. Giants
Kenny Ducey: Just about everything is working against the New York Mets at the moment. Their top bat, Francisco Lindor, and their ace, Jacob deGrom, are on the shelf. They’ve lost three in a row to fall to third in the NL East race. Now, they’re going to be zombies out there against the San Francisco Giants.
No, I am not referring to Rich Hill’s perennially exhausted-looking face. I’m talking about the fatigue that’s going to be built up here for New York. After being flexed into primetime on Sunday night, the Mets had to take off for the West Coast roughly around midnight, and will be turning around to get to the ballpark on probably six hours of sleep, at best. Mixed with jet lag, it’s not going to be very easy.
The Mets will also be up against Kevin Gausman and a Giants bullpen that carries a sparkling 2.72 second-half ERA into this one. The biggest strength of San Francisco, and one shared by Gausman, has been limiting walks, and walking is just about the only thing that the Mets have done well.
The matchup is poor, the Mets will be tired, and they will send to the mound Hill, who has yet to allow fewer than three runs since joining the Mets. This is a recipe for disaster, and I don’t expect the Mets to recover from their stumble.