Zerillo’s MLB Daily Betting Model, 7/16: Should You Wager on Waguespack vs. Cashner, Red Sox?
Dan Hamilton, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Jacob Waguespack
- Sean Zerillo's MLB model helps you find edges when betting moneylines and over/unders for the full game and first five (F5) innings.
- He analyzes Tuesday's slate of games, including how to bet Rays-Yankees (7:05 p.m. ET) and Blue Jays-Red Sox (7:10 pm. ET).
- Plug in your odds to the spreadsheet at the bottom of this article to see where you might have an edge.
The Red Sox acquired Andrew Cashner from the Orioles earlier this week, and he will start for Boston on Tuesday against the Blue Jays. Cashner faced the Blue Jays in his most recent start on July 6 and defeated Toronto for the second time this season; allowing seven hits and one run over 13 total innings pitched.
Cashner has pitched to a 3.83 ERA over 17 starts in 2019 and has made a big change to his repertoire – drastically reducing his sinker and cutter usage while increasing his rate of four-seam fastballs and changeups. But with an xFIP (4.90) more than a run higher than his actual ERA, can bettors really trust Cashner going forward?
But first, I’m dropping this video of (lead-off hitter!?) Travis d’Arnaud shoving three balls over the short porch at Yankee Stadium on Monday:
The Mets released d’Arnaud on May 3, he signed with the Dodgers on May 5 and was traded to the Rays for cash on May 10.
In 39 games and 131 at-bats since, d’Arnaud has seven doubles, nine home runs, 26 runs scored, and 26 runs batted in. He’s a former Met, how else would you explain the breakout?
Recapping Yesterday’s MLB Model
At writing yesterday, the model would have gone 2-4 against full-game moneylines and 3-2 against moneylines for the first five innings (F5).
My plays went 3-2-1, and I finished up 1.12 units for the day.
It was a positive day in terms of generating Closing Line Value (CLV).
I gained 21 cents overall against the moneylines that I played – only losing five cents against the Rays game moneyline (+132 to +137), while the Rays F5 moneyline moved 18 cents in my favor (+133 to +115).
The under between the Astros and Angels also dropped from 10.0 to 9.5.
MLB Betting Model for Tuesday, July 16
Today, the model recommends six full-game moneylines and six moneylines for the first five-innings (F5).
As of writing, the 3.5% trigger threshold officially marked the Blue Jays, Diamondbacks, Giants, Orioles, Rays, and Tigers as full-game plays. The model also likes the Blue Jays, Diamondbacks, Rays, and Tigers, in addition to the Braves and Royals as F5 plays.
In our staff favorite bets for Tuesday, I already discussed why I like the Diamondbacks as my favorite bet of the night.
To quickly rehash it: Texas ranks 12th vs. right-handed pitching but 26th vs. left-handed pitching – and they are just 13-17 on the moneyline vs. lefty starters.
I think that there is considerable value in backing the Diamondbacks on Tuesday, and especially with the public piling on Cy Young candidate Lance Lynn.
I’m only going to play the Rays on the F5 moneyline today.
Tampa Bay’s bullpen blew another late lead on Monday, and Rays manager Kevin Cash looks visibility frustrated with his team’s inability to navigate the late innings against Gio Urshela and the Yankees offense.
The Rays have also been very profitable in the first half when Ryne Stanek opens games. Here’s how the Rays record breaks down in his starts since opener strategy was implemented in 2018:
- Full Game Moneyline: 33-23, 58.9%, +$342, 6.1% ROI
- F5 Moneyline: 34-16-6, 68%, +$1,190, 21.2% ROI
- F5 Spread: 37-19, 66.1%, +$1,329, 23.7% ROI
Stanek has been most profitable as a favorite against the F5 spread (23-10, 31% ROI).
This game also points to an under for two reasons:
Phil Cuzzi is behind the dish, and the under has hit 56% of the time in his career when he’s the plate umpire (248-195, +34.06 units).
Additionally, the game fits the system for contrarian unders for winning teams, which has continued to return a profit of nearly 5% even during the high scoring 2019 MLB season:
As of writing, the Astros-Angels game also matches the contrarian unders system, and 9.5 that total is still more than a run higher than my projection.
Lastly, I wanted to comment further on the Blue Jays – Red Sox game that I mentioned at the top today.
There are certainly signs that something is different with Andrew Cashner. His groundball rate is up, his swinging strike rate and strikeout minus walk rate have both improved, and his FIP is more than a run lower than it was last season.
But all of these metrics and the rest of the statistical profile remain below average, and its a mystery as to how Cashner has survived on a .256 BABIP (career .290) despite a 42% hard-hit rate.
The exit velocity against his pitches is 89.8 mph, up from 88.7 mph in 2018, and though his xwOBA has improved from .358 to .340, Cashner’s .288 wOBA this season is overdue for regression.
Cashner will face 6’6′” righty Jacob Waguespack, who allowed three runs to the Red Sox in a win on July 3.
He throws a four-seam fastball (94 mph), cutter (90 mph), 12-6 curveball, hard slider, and an occasional changeup, and generates weak contact with a high groundball rate.
He does have a bit of a funky delivery, so it remains to be seen if the Red Sox will adjust after having faced him already:
Bets (So Far) for July 16
- Arizona Diamondbacks (+153) Game Moneyline (1 Unit)
- Tampa Bay Rays (+145) F5 Moneyline
- Toronto Blue Jays (+180) Game Moneyline
- Under 11.5 (-120), Washington at Baltimore
- Under 10 (-120), Tampa Bay at NY Yankees
- Under 9.5 (-120), LA Dodgers at Philadelphia
- Under 10.5 (-120), Houston at LA Angels
Zerillo’s Full MLB Model, 7/16
Download the Excel doc with my projections to input odds from your sportsbook. These projections cover the full game and First 5 moneylines and over/unders. A sample of one of the sheets is below.