MLB Odds, Picks | 3 Best Bets for Astros vs. Marlins, Guardians vs. Reds & More (Wednesday, August 16)

MLB Odds, Picks | 3 Best Bets for Astros vs. Marlins, Guardians vs. Reds & More (Wednesday, August 16) article feature image

Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images. Pictured: Paul Blackburn (Athletics)

We have four day MLB games on Wednesday, but our staff is targeting the night slate for their best bets.

Below you'll have the chance to tail three best bets, including picks for Astros vs. Marlins and Guardians vs. Reds.

Dive in now for picks, odds and MLB best bets for today.

Wednesday's MLB Best Bets

The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that our MLB betting staff is targeting from today's slate of games. Click on the team logos for any of the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.

GameStart Time (ET)Pick
6:40 p.m. ET
6:40 p.m. ET
6:45 p.m. ET
Specific betting recommendations come from the sportsbook offering preferred odds as of writing. Always shop for the best price using our MLB Odds page, which automatically surfaces the best lines for every game.

Guardians vs. Reds

Wednesday, Aug. 16
6:40 p.m. ET ET
Guardians Under 4.5

By D.J. James

I was absolutely astounded by this, but the Guardians have a 12 wRC+ in August off of left-handers. The month is halfway over, and even though they have a sub-19% strikeout rate, their OPS is a paltry .417 with an ISO of only .047.

They'll have their hands full against Andrew Abbott and the Reds tonight. Abbott owns a 2.95 ERA and 3.44 xERA. Yes, his walk rate is over 8%, but the Guardians are only walking 6.5% off of southpaws this month.

Abbott is also striking out 27% of batters, so Cleveland may be whiffing more than it's used to.

Abbott has some tendencies to allow hard contact. His hard-hit rate is over 40% and his average exit velocity ranks in the 11th percentile. That said, Cleveland ranks dead last in both metrics, so this shouldn't be much of a concern.

In addition, the Guardians do have four bats above a .330 xwOBA off of southpaws in August, but other than that, they don't have a single batter above the .270 mark. This means Abbott might easily take care of business against the lower part of the batting order.

Lastly, the Reds also have five arms below a 4.00 xFIP in August, so they should be able to take down the Guardians when Abbott needs to exit this game.

Expect Abbott to have a strong outing, as he's continued his solid form in the second half of the season.

Take Cleveland’s under to 4 (-133).

Astros vs. Marlins

Wednesday, Aug. 16
6:40 p.m. ET ET
Astros -124

By Tony Sartori

This play is going to be chalky/square and whatever else you want to call it, but I'm not sure what the justification is for the Astros' moneyline only sitting at -124 for this game.

Yes, they're on the road and the Marlins are a capable team, but Houston is better across the board.

Let's start with the pitching matchup, which is Justin Verlander versus Jesus Luzardo. Verlander is better both statistically and analytically, pacing Luzardo in ERA, WHIP, average exit velocity, HardHit%, xERA/xwOBA, xBA, xSLG and Barrel%.

Additionally, Luzardo enters this game in terrible form, posting a 0-2 record with a 10.13 ERA and 2.10 WHIP over his past three starts. He's also 0-1 with a 6.06 ERA and 1.29 WHIP through three career starts against Houston.

Not only do the Astros possess the stronger starting pitcher, but they also boast the better lineup. Entering this game, Houston ranks higher than Miami in runs scored per game, SLG, OPS and home runs.

Finally, Houston also boasts a stronger bullpen, with its relief staff ranking higher than the Marlins' in ERA, BA, SLG and WHIP.

Even if Jose Altuve doesn't play, that doesn't justify such a low line on the team that's superior in every facet of the game.

Athletics vs. Cardinals

Wednesday, Aug. 16
6:45 p.m. ET ET
Athletics F5 +0.5

By Kevin Rogers

The Athletics try to avoid the sweep against the Cardinals at Busch Stadium tonight, as Oakland has allowed 13 runs in its first two defeats.

Matthew Liberatore is coming off a career start at Tampa Bay in his last start by tossing eight scoreless innings and striking out seven batters in a 5-2 win as a +180 road underdog.

Also, Liberatore was drafted by the Rays in the first round before getting traded in 2020, so there was definitely extra motivation for the left-hander.

However, Liberatore hasn't fared well at home this season, especially in the first five innings. The Cardinals have trailed through five innings in his last three starts at Busch Stadium while going 3-5-2 in his 10 outings this season from a first-five perspective.

Oakland has trailed only three times through five innings in its last 10 series finales, as the Athletics send out Paul Blackburn to the mound.

The Athletics trailed just once in Blackburn’s five road starts this season, and Oakland has trailed at the halfway point of the game only three times in his 12 starts.

The Cardinals have won five of their last six games overall, but are still outside of playoff contention in the NL.

I'm backing Oakland at +0.5 (-114) in the first five innings tonight at FanDuel. I recommend taking this up to -120.

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