Tuesday MLB Odds, Picks & Predictions: Expert Betting Breakdown for Today’s 17-Game Slate (April 19)

Tuesday MLB Odds, Picks & Predictions: Expert Betting Breakdown for Today’s 17-Game Slate (April 19) article feature image

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images. Pictured: Freddie Freeman passes Matt Olson on the bases.

  • There's a whopping 17 games on today's MLB slate and our lead projections analyst is here to tell you how he's betting.
  • Sean Zerillo is the engine that runs our MLB projections and he goes in-depth with his favorite bets from today's slate.
  • Continue reading for a full breakdown of the slate as well as Zerillo's best bets.

Tuesday features a loaded 17-game MLB slate, including a pair of doubleheaders.

As a result, some starting pitching matchups for Tuesday are not official as of Monday night. Therefore, my projections for some Tuesday games could change, and I may still add some bets to my card.

You can find my projections for every MLB game in the Action Network App (on both the PRO Projections tab and the game pages) and our Projections Hub (which you should bookmark).

Using those projections, where can we find actionable value on Tuesday?

Odds tables via Caesars. You can shop for the best MLB lines all season long via our MLB odds page.

Chicago White Sox vs. Cleveland Guardians

Editor's Note: Tuesday's game between the White Sox and Guardians has been postponed because of inclement weather. It will be made up as part of a doubleheader Wednesday.

Jimmy Lambert vs. Shane Bieber

White Sox Odds+120
Guardians Odds-140
Over/Under7.5 (-110/-110)
First Pitch6:40 p.m. ET

Model Projection (full projections here)

  • White Sox probability: 41.5% (fair odds of +141)
  • Guardians probability: 58.5% (-141)
  • Projected total: 8.44

I had concerns about Shane Bieber coming into the 2022 season.

Bieber's performance dipped (3.76 xERA) last season after winning the Cy Young in 2020 (2.54 xERA) in a short sample (12 starts) against Central division competition only. That Cy Young campaign now looks like the outlier compared to his 50 starts on either side of that campaign (3.64 xERA in 20219).

Moreover, Bieber only tossed six innings after MLB began cracking down on the sticky stuff last season. Factoring in 2022 data, the spin rate on all of his pitches is down — relative to previous performances — and his velocity has also seen a noticeable dip following his pitching shoulder injury.

Bieber's fastball averaged 94.2 mph during his Cy Young season before decreasing to 92.9 mph over his first 14 starts last season. Since returning from the IL, Bieber has been sitting at 91 mph, ranging from 90.7 mph to 91.4 mph across four outings.

He can still be an effective pitcher, even at reduced velocity, but I suspect that he'll pitch closer to his Steamer (3.50 FIP) projections than his ZIPS (2.93 FIP) projections moving forward.

That said, I do show slight value on Cleveland's first five innings (F5) moneyline — perhaps because Jimmy Lambert (projected FIP range 5.01 to 5.25) is starting in place of Dallas Keuchel (projected range of 4.71 to 4.95). You can place that bet up to -140. I tossed it into a small parlay to limit exposure because I don't trust Bieber's stuff.

Some books probably have the game lined for Keuchel, which is ironic because they initially lined Monday's contest for Keuchel vs. Triston Mcenzkie — even though Bieber had been announced — and I had locked in the F5, and full game moneyline bets on Cleveland around -115; and both numbers closed around -140.

Unfortunately, I can't take that CLV with me after a postponement.

However, I still like the Overs in this contest either way, despite some potentially lousy weather in the area.

Bet the full game total up to 8 (-105) and the F5 total up to 4 (-110), compared to my projections of 8.44 and 4.35, respectively.

Recommended Bets

  • Cleveland Guardians F5 Moneyline (up to -140) at BetMGM
  • F5 Over 3.5 (-130) at BetRivers, bet to 4 (-110)
  • Over 7.5 (+100) at Wynn, bet to 8 (-105)

New York Yankees vs. Detroit Tigers

Gerrit Cole vs. Tyler Alexander

Yankees Odds-215
Tigers Odds+185
Over/Under8 (-110/-110)
First Pitch6:40 p.m. ET

Model Projection (full projections here)

  • Yankees probability: 60.7% (fair odds of -155)
  • Tigers probability: 39.3% (+155)
  • Projected total: 7.82

MLB started cracking down on spider tack and other substances last June. Since that time, Gerrit Cole has been carrying a 4.26 ERA, 3.66 FIP and 3.31 xFIP.

Overall, the expected indicators aren't far from his 2020 levels (3.38 xERA, 3.21 SIERA). However, as last season progressed, it was relatively evident that pitchers were figuring out a way to add substances back to the baseball.

After an initial drop last June, Cole steadily regained spin on his fastball. However, his limited two-start sample from this season indicates that he may never reach the heights from 2019 through early 2021 ever again:

Cole still rates as one of the better starting pitchers in the game, and even if I leave his model-weighted ERA (3.16) untouched, I still project value on Detroit for Tuesday.

Tyler Alexander (4.24 xERA, 4.39 FIP, 4.86 xFIP, 4.47 SIERA over 106 1/3 innings in 2021) is an effective mid-rotation starter with four average offerings (sinker, cutter, slider, changeup) and solid command. He's a high-floor, low-ceiling pitcher who's particularly effective against same-side hitters (career .259 wOBA vs. RHH; .352 vs. LHH).

While the Yankees possess several potent right-handed bats (Josh Donaldson, Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and D.J. Lemahieu), their lineup used to crush left-handed pitching. Still, the additions of Anthony Rizzo and Joey Gallo have neutralized their splits to a degree).

Compared to my projections, the Tigers offer value here both on the F5 moneyline (to +185) and the full game moneyline (to +169), though I'll have a slightly larger wager on the full game bet.

Recommended Bets

  • Detroit Tigers F5 (+185) at BetRivers (bet to +185)
  • Detroit Tigers (+185) at BetMGM (bet to +169)

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Miami Marlins

Adam Wainwright vs. Jesus Luzardo

Cardinals Odds-115
Marlins Odds-105
Over/Under8 (-115/-105)
First Pitch6:40 p.m. ET

Model Projection (full projections here)

  • Cardinals probability: 50.4% (fair odds of -102)
  • Marlins probability: 49.6% (+102)
  • Projected total: 7.42

Adam Wainwright continues to defy father time, pitching better at age 40 (3.84 xERA, 3.87 xFIP, 4.13 SIERA last season) than he did from 2016 to 2020.

His pitch-to-contact style meshes well with the Cardinals' league-leading defense. According to my projection model, no other team projects half as good as St. Louis does on defense, enough to increase their projection by as much as four percent on a game-to-game basis.

I figured I'd be betting Jesus Luzardo in this spot until I remembered the Cardinals' offensive dominance against southpaw pitching (projected 122 wRC+, or 22% better than league average against lefties, vs. 101 wRC+ vs. righties). As a team, they showed a severe split last season (115 wRC+ vs. lefties, 92 wRC+ vs. righties).

Still, Luzardo reminded us of his potential in his first start against the Angels (5 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 12 K) while averaging 97.9 mph on his fastball — a career-high. He also threw his slider 50% of the time while offering just one changeup — a pitch he may need to deploy more frequently against right-handed hitters.

Jesús Luzardo, 10th, 11th and 12th Ks

Thru 5 innings (only 76 pitches). pic.twitter.com/sOgls1512s

— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 13, 2022

The Marlins changed Luzardo's position on the rubber (moved from the middle to the third-base side) and altered his delivery. Still, the improved velocity speaks to increased efficiency in his mechanics.

While I don't show value on either side of the moneyline in this matchup, I bet the under in both halves. You can play the F5 under to 4 (+100) and the full game Under to 8 (-112) and hope the baby lizard can keep slithering against an offense typically devastating for southpaws.

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Minnesota Twins vs. Kansas City Royals

Chris Archer vs. Carlos Hernandez

Twins Odds-115
Royals Odds-105
Over/Under8.5 (-105/-115)
First Pitch8:10 p.m. ET

Model Projection (full projections here)

  • Twins probability: 46.4% (fair odds of +115)
  • Royals probability: 53.6% (-115)
  • Projected total: 8.70

The Royals have several intriguing, high-upside arms, including Carlos Hernandez, a 25-year-old with a 60-grade fastball (average 97.2 mph last season) but a spotty command.

Hernandez's velocity was down a bit in his first start of the season (95.2 mph). However, he intentionally took something off of his pitches to refine his command. He also showed a slightly different pitch mix, using more sliders and introducing a splitter (11.8% usage) to his arsenal.

Hernandez pitched to a 4.37 xERA last season, per Statcast, and I tend to trust that number based on the arm talent, despite more discouraging indicators (5.28 xFIP, 5.43 SIERA) in his profile.

While the Twins have a superior lineup, I view the Royals as a far superior defensive club. They rank as the second-best defensive team in my model — while the Twins are a below-average defensive unit without Byron Buxton on the field.

The defense of Bobby Witt, Jr. pic.twitter.com/7ID9RpYIeZ

— Joel Goldberg (@goldbergkc) April 7, 2022

According to my projection model, the difference in defense upgrades the Royals' chances by more than three percent in this matchup.

I would bet the Royals' F5 moneyline up to -110 and their full game line up to -106, with either bet representing a two percent edge compared to my projection.

Recommended Bets

  • Carlos Hernandez, Over 3.5 Strikeouts (+100) at Rivers
  • Kansas City Royals F5 (+102) at FanDuel (bet to -110)
  • Kanas City Royals (+107) at DraftKings (bet to -106)
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Texas Rangers vs. Seattle Mariners

Jon Gray vs. Robbie Ray

Rangers Odds+130
Mariners Odds-150
Over/Under7.5 (-110/-110)
First Pitch9:40 p.m. ET

Model Projection (full projections here)

  • Rangers probability: 45.9% (fair odds of +118)
  • Mariners probability: 54.1% (-118)
  • Projected total: 7.27

Mariners executives might be sweating each of Robbie Ray's starts moving forward after signing the reigning AL Cy Young to a five-year, $115M contract this summer.

Ray's velocity in his most recent start sat at 91.8 mph — its second-lowest mark over the past three seasons:

Ray averaged 94.6 mph on his fastball in 2021 — a career-high — and though he previously struggled with command, he's not having an issue finding the zone (career-high 52.2% zone rate) so far this season.

Still, he will miss far fewer bats with reduced velocity on all of his pitches, which lowers what previously looked like substantial upside.

After posting a 3.57 xERA and a 3.36 xFIP last season, projections were calling for regression (projected FIP range 3.85 to 4.36) for Ray, even without a substantial decline in stuff.

In my projections, I still have Ray at a 3.89 model weighted ERA, but I make him a reasonably comparable pitcher to Jon Gray (3.95 xERA, 4.04 xFIP, 4.17 SIERA last season).

The righty worked to refine his slider after moving to Texas this offseason. After dominating hitters with the pitch last year (..238 wOBA, .236 xwOBA), he's managed to increase horizontal movement on the pitch even further:

I would bet the Rangers at +128 or better for Tuesday's contest and take plus money on the starting pitcher trending in the right direction.

Recommended Bets

  • Texas Rangers (+130) at PointsBet (bet to +128)
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Atlanta Braves vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

Max Fried vs. Walker Buehler

Braves Odds+140
Dodgers Odds-160
Over/Under8 (-110/-110)
First Pitch10:10 p.m. ET

Model Projection (full projections here)

  • Braves probability: 42.1% (fair odds of +138)
  • Dodgers probability: 57.9% (-138)
  • Projected total: 7.74

Max Fried has allowed seven runs through his first 11 innings this season, despite showing a slight velocity uptick (95.2 mph) in his first start, representing a career-best mark.

Both Fried (1.93 ERA, 2.83 FIP, 3.08 xFIP) and Walker Buehler (2.60 ERa, 2.82 FIP, 3.39 xFIP) were dominant in the second half of last season, en route to their NLCS faceoff.

Some projection systems view Fried ( projected FIP range 3.26 to 3.80) as a superior pitch to Buehler (range 3.44 to 4.07), though I rate Buehler (3.26 to 3.60 model weighted ERA) as the better arm in my projections.

Still, while the Dodgers crush right-handed pitching (projected 130 wRC+, 107 in 2021), they rate much closer to league average against lefties (projected 112 wRC+,  104 in 2021), and I would bet Atlanta here at +150 or better.

Recommended Bets

  • Atlanta Braves (wait for +150)

Bets (April 19)

  • Cardinals/Marlins, F5 Under 4.5 (-125) at DraftKings (bet to 4 (+100))
  • Cardinals/Marlins, Under 8 (+100) at PointsBet (bet to -112)
  • Carlos Hernandez, Over 3.5 Strikeouts (+100) at Rivers
  • Cincinnati Reds F5 (+185) at MGM (bet to +165)
  • Cincinnati Reds (+167) at WynnBet (bet to +153)
  • Colorado Rockies (+120) at MGM (bet to +120)
  • Diamondbacks/Nationals Game 1, F5 Over 4 (-125, bet to -125)
  • Diamondbacks/Nationals Game 1, Over 8 (-110, bet to 8.5 (-105))
  • Diamondbacks/Nationals Game 2, Over 8.5 (+102, bet to -115)
  • Detroit Tigers F5 (+185) at BetRivers (bet to +185)
  • Detroit Tigers (+185) at BetMGM (bet to +169)
  • Framber Valdez, Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-135) at Wynn
  • Guardians/White Sox, F5 Over 3.5 (-130) at BetRivers, bet to 4 (-110)
  • Guardians/White Sox, Over 7.5 (+100) at WynnBet, bet to 8 (-105)
  • Kansas City Royals F5 (+102) at FanDuel (bet to -110)
  • Kanas City Royals (+107) at DraftKings (bet to -106)
  • Milwaukee Brewers F5 (-235) at FanDuel (bet to -260)
  • Parlay (+189): Boston F5 (-145) & Cleveland F5 (-140)
  • Oakland Athletics (-115) at Caesars (bet to -120)
  • Phillies/Rockies, F5 Under 6.5 (+100) at Rivers (bet to -120)
  • Reiver Sanmartin, Over 3.5 Strikeouts (-110) at FanDuel
  • Texas Rangers (+130) at PointsBet (bet to +128)

Watching (April 19)

  • Atlanta Braves (wait for +150)

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