MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: 6 Best Bets From Friday’s Slate, Including Diamondbacks vs. Rockies, White Sox vs. Giants (July 1)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images. Pictured: Tommy La Stella and Wilmer Flores
- July is here, and as we get a holiday weekend started, there's plenty of betting options in MLB.
- With 13 games under the lights, our analysts are all over it with betting picks galore.
- Continue reading for full analysis of all of our favorite bets from Friday night's MLB slate.
Ladies and gentlemen, the weekend.
Friday kicks start a holiday weekend with a solid, 15-game slate. There are two afternoon affairs, and then we’ve got a robust 13 games under the lights, and our analyst have eyes on six of them: Cardinals vs. Phillies, Rangers vs. Mets, Angels vs. Astros, Diamondbacks vs. Rockies, Athletics vs. Mariners and White Sox vs. Giants.
There’s betting value scattered throughout the card, including your usual moneyline plays and total plays, but also team totals, run line bets, props and more.
Here are our six best bets from Friday night’s Major League Baseball slate.
MLB Odds & Picks
Tony Sartori: Taking the mound for the Phillies in this contest is young left-hander Bailey Falter. Since joining the starting rotation, Falter has been solid as he has allowed just six runs over three starts.
Philadelphia has won two of those three outings (67%). Falter has yet to go further than five innings since joining the rotation, which means Philadelphia’s bullpen will most likely play a big role in this game once again.
Since June 1st, the Phillies’ relief pitching ranks fifth in the league in BA, sixth in SLG, and fifth in wOBA. Aaron Nola went seven innings in a blowout for Philadelphia Thursday night, so all of their best bullpen arms will be available for this game.
This pitching staff should get plenty of run support as the Phillies are slated to go against right-hander Miles Mikolas. When facing right-handed pitchers at home, the Phillies rank fifth in the league in BA, second in SLG, second in OPS and second in wOBA since the beginning of June.
This offense has been on fire at home recently as they are averaging 5.4 runs over their last 10 home games. The public is all over St. Louis in this contest as they are starting Miles Mikolas, who has been great this season.
We have seen some reverse line movement for this game as around 80% of the bets are on St. Louis while the line continues to move in favor of Philadelphia.
This spot could be a good opportunity to sell high on Mikolas as he runs into a hot Philadelphia offense that will be backed by a solid starting pitcher and a strong bullpen.
Mets Run Line
Editor’s Note: Chris Bassitt has been placed in the IL and David Peterson will start in his place tonight.
Nicholas Martin: Glenn Otto has been among the worst pitchers in baseball this season, and hasn’t offered any indication of turning things around after a stint on the COVID-19 IL.
His lone rehab start in Triple-A was far from encouraging before making a disastrous return to the big-leagues Sunday, allowing six earned runs over two innings against the Nationals.
Otto has now allowed an OBP of .366 this season, which is the 10th highest among starters who have pitched over 35 innings, led by an alarmingly high walk-rate of 13.9%.
His xWOBA of .404 suggests things could be even worse, and a matchup with a pesky, disciplined Mets lineup could certainly compound the biggest concerns with Otto’s game.
So while the Mets are showing some indications that regression could be coming offensively, they have been the fifth most potent team offensively against right-handed pitching up to this point, and I believe they match up well against Otto.
Chris Bassitt has been quite steady all season long with quality starts in 10 of 14 outings, and a strong xERA of 3.22.
Bassitt has been particularly dominant over his last three starts in which he has allowed a WHIP of just 0.79, while averaging 9 K/9.
A reasonable start could go a long way Friday in a duel against Otto, and with the Mets’ solid bullpen lying in wait behind Bassitt I feel we could see New York snap it’s three-game slump with a comfortable win Friday, and I see value backing New York to cover the run line at +105.
Alex Bregman Prop
Jules Posner: Over the past 12 games, Alex Bregman is hitting .390 with a .268 ISO. He’s gotten over 1.5 total bases in seven of those games, and he’s got home field advantage. Bregman hasn’t had a great offensive season overall, but he has been really strong against RHP at home this season.
For the year, Bregman is hitting .329 with a .263 ISO and 10 of his 25 hits have gone for extra bases. He’ll also get to hit against an Angels bullpen that has allowed a .241 BA against over the past three weeks.
Angels’ starter Michael Lorenzen has struggled on the road and against right-handed hitters as of late. He’s given up a .318 BA and a .455 SLG against right-handed hitters in his two road starts in June.
Bregman’s total bases sits at +140 for 1.5 and he should get 4-5 cracks at that total Friday night against the Angels. Bregman is hot and the value is there. As long as this sits in plus money, it’s worth the risk.
Diamondbacks F5 and ML
Brad Cunningham:Arizona definitely should not be an underdog with Merrill Kelly on the mound against Antonio Senzatela:
On top of that, Senzatela is a heavy fastball pitcher, going to it over 55% and that is the only pitch the Diamondbacks have had success against this season (+11.4 run value, per FanGraphs). So, this is a really good matchup for Arizona to open a three-game series in Denver.
I have the Diamondbacks projected as pretty significant favorites for the first five innings and full game, so I would play anything first five innings up to -135 and full game up to -110.
Athletics Team Total
Charlie DiSturco: Is there anything better than watching the Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners duke it out on a Friday night?
The Athletics seem to find new ways to consistently blow leads every night. While their offense has been able to keep games close, the bullpen inevitably implodes. That’s why I’m staying away from a side and targeting a total in this AL West matchup.
I think Oakland holds value on their team total of 1.5 against a pitcher long overdue for negative regression in Marco Gonzales.
Gonzales has been one of the most fortunate pitchers in baseball this season. He has a 3.31 ERA but his expected indicators are incredibly alarming. His xERA sits nearly a run and a half higher at 4.71, and his xFIP is an even worse 4.91.
The southpaw does not strike out batters, is sporting a career-worst walk rate and relies too heavily on pitching to contact. While this method has worked out in the early going — Gonzales’ BABIP is .243 — that number should balloon up, as opponents have an xBA of .276 against the lefty.
I know the Athletics’ offense isn’t a fun one to back, but they’ve actually been about league average over the last week. They are 17th in wRC+ and have scored 5+ runs in four of their last seven games.
They are by no means a good team, but I think it’s worth backing Oakland to score two runs over the first five innings given how fortunate Gonzales has been through the first three months of the season.
I will be consistently fading Gonzales over the month of July and it starts with a gross Friday night matchup against the Athletics. Hold your nose and dive in!
Giants First Five ML
Sean Zerillo: I may sound like a broken record by continually backing Alex Cobb, but he has been the unluckiest pitcher in baseball this season. Cobb’s 5.48 ERA is far higher than his underlying indicators (2.33 xERA, 2.7 xFIP, 2.95 SIERA).
Cobb has been victimized by the three stats which typically drive pitcher luck, with a .378 BABIP (.295 career), 55.7% strand rate (71.9% career), and a 17.9% HR/FB rate (13.9% career).
Cobb’s velocity sits at a career-best 95 mph this season — up two ticks relative to last year and a 3.3 mph increase over his career average. Moreover, he’s maintained that velocity bump in each of his starts. Additionally, Cobb has a career-best 62% groundball rate, the second-highest mark in baseball.
Over a limited sample after returning from injury, Lance Lynn’s velocity is down a tick relative to previous seasons, and he’s carrying an xERA north of 5. His Stuff+ rating (97) is right around league average.
Additionally, the Giants should get the better of the offensive splits over the first five innings (F5). The Sox have smashed left-handed pitching, with an MLB-best 134 wrC+ against southpaws. However, they rank 23rd against righties (89 wrC+), well below average.
Conversely, the Giants are in a superior offensive split, ranking ninth against righties and 16th against lefties.
I set the Giants’ F5 line at -177 (63.9% implied) for Friday night and would bet their first half price up to -162 (61.8% implied) at a two percent edge.
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