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Wednesday MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Our 4 Best Bets, Including Astros vs. Red Sox and Padres vs. Phillies (May 18)

Wednesday MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Our 4 Best Bets, Including Astros vs. Red Sox and Padres vs. Phillies (May 18) article feature image
Credit:

Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images. Pictured: Jeremy Pena of the Houston Astros.

  • Wednesday's 15-game MLB slate is already underway, but some of the best games to bet today begin early this evening.
  • The Action Network MLB betting staff has highlighted three games that stand out from today's slate, including Phillies vs. Padres and two picks aligned on the same side for Astros vs. Red Sox.
  • Check out our MLB best bets for Wednesday, including comprehensive analysis for all four of our top picks.

Looking for best bets to fill out your Wednesday MLB betting card? Our staff of MLB betting analysts and writers has you covered with four picks from three games today.

Check out all four picks below, complete with full breakdowns for each of our four best bets and where to bet each game at the best price currently available in the market.


Wednesday 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 the team logos for one the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.

Game
Time
Pick
3:37 p.m. ET
Twins RL +110
6:10 p.m. ET
Astros -135
6:40 p.m. ET
Phillies -1.5 (+135)
Specific bet 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.

Twins vs. Athletics

Wednesday, May 18
3:37 p.m. ET
MLB Network
Twins RL +110

By Jules Posner

The Minnesota Twins look to take the rubber match of their three-game series at the Oakland Athletics — and they’re in a good position to do so.

A’s starter, Daulton Jeffries, has struggled during his last four starts, posting a 7.65 ERA — but a 3.93 FIP — during that timespan. Moreover, even given Jeffries’ decent peripherals, Oakland’s offense has really struggled to put up runs at home this season.

Despite putting up five runs last night — which may be considered an outburst for Oakland — the A’s still rank 26th in team wRC+ at home vs right-handed pitching They have been entrenched in the bottom five in that category all season.

Sonny Gray makes his return to RingCentral Coliseum, where he struggled in his only appearance as visiting member of the Cincinnati Reds. He gave up three earned runs and walked five batters during four and 1/3 innings.

Nevertheless, Gray has a 3.53 career ERA and 3.68 FIP lifetime at RingCentral, and he may benefit from positive regression this time around against a sluggish Oakland offense.

Furthermore, the Twins have been one of the best road offenses against right-handed pitching, and they should be able to take advantage of Jeffries in today’s matchup.

The moneyline is in the -200 range, but the runline is plus-money. If you can grab the runline in that area, it’s probably the best value play in this matchup.

Pick: Twins RL +110



Astros vs. Red Sox

Wednesday, May 18
6:10 p.m. ET
NESN

Astros -135

By D.J. James

The Houston Astros have been the best-hitting team against right-handed pitchers during the month of May. The Astros will once again have another opportunity agaisnt right-handed pitching on Wednesday afternoon when Nick Pivetta takes the mound for the opposing Boston Red Sox.

Opposing Pivetta will be Astros pitcher Luis Garcia, who boasts a 2.75 xERA and 2.94 ERA. If anything, he has actually been somewhat unlucky — even with great results. He has an above-average strikeout and walk rate, as well. This bodes well against a team like the Red Sox, who report the second-highest Chase Rate in MLB, trailing only the Miami Marlins at 30.4%.

Pivetta, on the other hand, has allowed an exceptional amount of hard-hit balls. He ranks in the fourth percentile in Average Exit Velocity and ranks in the sixth percentile in Hard Hit Percentage.

Houston’s 147 wRC+ against righties this month, combined with the team’s Hard Hit Percentage of 41.6%, is a perfect concoction to defeat Pivetta and move the game to the rough Boston bullpen earlier in the contest.

Take Houston at -135, and play to -150. There is enough value to play them with how well they have played this month. At the least, they should be able to put up plenty of runs on Pivetta.

Pick: Astros -135 (Play to -150)


Astros -135

By Kenny Ducey

At this point, we know who Nick Pivetta is. A couple of good starts in a row doesn’t change the fact that he’s a lackluster starter with some dastardly numbers.

This season, more than 50% of the contact he’s allowed has traveled at least 95 mph, which is one of the worst marks in all of baseball. On top of that, he’s walked near 10% of the batters he’s faced and pitched to a .466 xwOBA on contact.

When hitters get their bat on the ball, good things are happening — and when they’re not, they’re still finding ways to get on base. The Astros are an incredibly dangerous lineup for a pitcher like Pivetta: Houston ranks second in wRC+, seventh in walk rate and top-three in all expected statistics at Statcast.

The Red Sox, on the other hand, are further down the list at 15th when it comes to expected wOBA. Now, Boston must contend with one of the best young pitchers in the American League, Luis Garcia. The righty has struck out nearly 28% of all opposing batters, which should jive with the Red Sox contact-oriented approach. I think this is a really great deal.

Pick: Astros -135



Padres vs. Phillies

Wednesday, May 18
6:40 p.m. ET
NBCS-PH
Phillies -1.5 (+135)

By Nicholas Martin

Blake Snell returns to the mound for the Padres on Wednesday evening. He will look to kick off his 2022 campaign with a strong start after his poor showing in 2021, which featured an xERA of 4.86.

He faces a tough matchup in his return: The Phillies have absolutely crushed left-handed pitching in the early going this season. Philadelphia boasts the fourth-best 119 wRC+, and third-best .342 wOBA against left-handed pitching. Even without Bryce Harper, the Phillies pose a very formidable challenge for Snell in his return.

Additionally, Snell will face workload restrictions and is likely to pitch four to five innings. After that, the plan is for Nick Martinez to enter the game, which should also be advantageous for Philadelphia.

Zack Wheeler will get the start for Philly and has looked true to form throughout his 31.2 innings this season, aptly following up a spectacular 2021 campaign. He will face a Padres team that has been relatively ineffective against hit right-handed pitching. San Diego ranks 20th in wRC+ (93) and ranks 23rd in wOBA (.293).

Altogether, the Padres appear due for some regression at the plate as well, as evidenced by the team’s .400 xSLG, and xWOBA of .320.

This sets up as a tough matchup for Snell before Martinez takes over — and a good spot for Wheeler to manage a strong outing. Therefore, I see value backing the Phillies run-line to +125.

Pick: Phillies -1.5 (+135)



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