Marlins vs. Giants MLB Odds & Picks: Miami Has Value as Series Opens at Oracle Park (Thursday, April 22)
(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images. Pictured: Jazz Chisholm Jr.
- Both the Marlins and Giants are a surprising 7-3 in their last 10 games, with Miami recently taking two of three from San Francisco.
- The Giants have relied on their three best starting pitchers to keep pace, none of which are playing Thursday.
- Tanner McGrath explains why the Marlins have value to begin the series.
Marlins vs. Giants Odds
|Time||9:45 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Wednesday Night and via PointsBet.|
After playing a three-game series in Miami last week, the Marlins and Giants are preparing to play a four-game series in San Francisco through this weekend. These two teams will have played seven times in nine days after this series concludes.
Miami took two of three in that series, but both teams have been red-hot recently. Both the Giants and Marlins are 7-3 in their last 10 games, as Miami is coming off a win against Baltimore, and the Giants almost swept Philadelphia.
As these two prepare for another cross-country series, let’s examine where the value lies in the opener.
The Marlins are hanging around. As mentioned above, they are 7-3 in their last 10 games and just took two of three from the Giants, but they also are just one game back of the division lead.
However, the biggest storyline for the Marlins this season is newcomer Jazz Chisholm Jr.
Chisholm is a combination of speed and power like we’ve rarely seen. He ranks in the 92nd percentile of players in sprint speed and leads all qualified hitters in barrel percentage. He also walks 17% of the time and boasts a 1.077 OPS.
Plus, he hit this bomb off the best pitcher in the world:
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 10, 2021
And Wednesday against the Orioles, Chisholm went 2-for-4 with a stolen base in the win. Just another day for the talented young star.
Starting Pitcher: Daniel Castano (LHP)
Castano is 26 and entering his second season in the show. He’s coming off a decent 2020, where he posted a 3.03 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP. He performed well for a first-year starter but definitely got a little lucky (4.81 FIP, 5.24 xERA).
The lefty had an excellent spring training and followed it up with an excellent 2021 debut against these Giants. Most notably, he’s struck out 13 batters while walking just three in his 18 innings pitched since spring began.
Castano’s got a four-pitch mix but primarily throws a four-seam and a slider. His slider last year was outstanding, as he recorded just a .149 wOBA on the pitch. His fastball that he barely throws 90 mph and allows a high exit velocity on was much-less successful.
San Francisco Giants
I’d like to talk about how 2020 breakout star Mike Yasztremski is leading the Giants offense to an early-season surge that has them second in the division, but that isn’t the case. Yasztremski is slumping, as he’s batting just .197 and has already struck out 23 times on 73 early plate appearances.
Instead, the old-man duo of Buster Posey and Evan Longoria are turning back the clocks. The two have combined for eight home runs and 13 RBIs, and both boast a wOBA above .400.
In addition to Posey and Longoria, the Giants starting pitchers have been incredible. Specifically, the trio of Kevin Gausman, Anthony DeSclafani and Johnny Cueto are leading the charge, as the three have posted a 1.89 ERA, a .97 WHIP and 57 strikeouts over 62.2 combined innings.
Because of those three, San Francisco’s rotation currently ranks fourth in ERA (2.51), fifth in FIP (3.12) and 10th in WHIP (1.15).
Unfortunately for Giants backers, today’s starter is not one of those three guys.
Starting Pitcher: Aaron Sanchez (RHP)
After not playing in 2020 and recording an impressive 14 losses in 2019 (T-3rd among pitchers), Sanchez is back in 2021 with a new team.
Sadly, he’s 0-1 this season, but he’s thrown well so far. Sanchez has allowed just four runs on 14 2/3 innings pitched while recording 12 strikeouts to just four walks.
His last start was against these Marlins, where he went 4 2/3 innings, struck out five and allowed just one run. However, he did allow five hits and walked three, so Sanchez wasn’t infallible.
Sanchez is a fastball pitcher who mostly throws a four-seam and a sinker. Sanchez has, unfortunately, lost a lot of velocity over the course of his career. His fastballs hovered around 98 mph in 2014 but dropped to just 93 mph by 2019.
So far this season his stuff has looked really slow. Both his fastballs are barely topping 90 mph, and he’s throwing his curveball more than ever, but his curveball has been good, as he’s posting a .194 wOBA on the pitch.
The Giants were an elite offense at home last season. This season, however, has not been the case.
The Giants are scoring just 3.5 runs per game at home this season, instead, relying on the excellent starting pitching to keep offenses at bay.
I give the advantage to Castano in this matchup, however. He’s in a great situation tonight, as the Giants have been pathetic against southpaws at Oracle Park. At home this season, the Giants boast just a .552 OPS and a 68 wRC+.
Moreover, the Giants should struggle against Castano’s slider tonight. The Giants are currently second to last in weighted slider runs created at -11.7, and Castano’s wOBA on the slider is still well below .200.
I also think this is a prime letdown spot for the Giants. San Francisco’s bullpen pitched a lot in their series against the Phillies, and Evan Longoria is out of the lineup on a rest day.
Some combination of Castano and the Giants’ fatigue factor pushes me towards Miami in this spot. I played the Marlins at +133 on PointsBet Wednesday night and would bet them at +120 or better.
Pick: Marlins ML (+133) | Play to +120