Zerillo’s MLB Daily Betting Model, Aug. 24: Will Athletics Continue Southpaw Dominance vs. Bumgarner, Giants?

Zerillo’s MLB Daily Betting Model, Aug. 24: Will Athletics Continue Southpaw Dominance vs. Bumgarner, Giants? article feature image

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Oakland Athletics shortstop Marcus Semien (10) celebrates with first baseman Matt Olson (28).

  • 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 Saturday's slate of games, including how to bet Giants at Athletics (9:07 p.m. ET).
  • Plug in your odds to the spreadsheet at the bottom of this article to see where you might have an edge.

I talk about it a lot, but it bears repeating whenever possible: the Oakland Athletics dominate left-handed pitching, and they have been incredibly profitable against left-handed starters of late. 

Dating back to July 1, 2018, the A’s are 41-19 (68.3%, +17.8 units) on the game moneyline and 36-18-6 (66%, +15 units) in the first five innings when facing a southpaw.

That profit is backed up both by metrics — a 121 wRC+ vs. lefties, 4th in MLB over that span; and intuition — as the A’s have consciously built a team capable of batting nine right-handed or switch-hitting hitters on any given night.

The A’s most recent loss to a lefty? Against Madison Bumgarner, on August 13. The former World Series MVP struck out nine over seven innings, allowing two hits and a run without walking a batter.

Can he repeat that performance in Oakland on Saturday night, or will the A’s get back to their lefty-smashing ways?

Recapping Yesterday’s MLB Model

At writing yesterday, the model would have gone 2-3 against full-game moneylines and 1-1-2 against moneylines for the first five innings (F5).

My plays went 3-7, and I finished down 2.26 units for the day.

It was a mostly positive day in terms of generating Closing Line Value (CLV).

I gained 34 cents against the sides that I played, netting as much as 16 cents on the Mariners, who swung from a dog (+106) to a favorite (-110) by first pitch.

MLB Betting Model for Saturday, August 24

All odds as of Saturday morning (view live MLB odds). Stay tuned on Twitter or follow me in The Action Network App for my entire betting card for Saturday.

Today, the model recommends three full-game moneylines and two moneylines for the first five innings (F5).


As of writing, the 3.5% trigger threshold officially marked the Marlins, Rangers, and Reds as full-game plays. The model also likes the Marlins, Reds, and Twins as F5 plays.

I was able to grab Oakland when their opening number (-140) took a slight dip, but they’ve been bet back past that initial number now. Even at my price (-128), I didn’t see line value specifically, I have just been riding their lefty trend whenever possible.

I also enjoy backing Oakland’s defense, which currently rates as the fifth-best in baseball. They ranked third in 2018, and much of that credit is due to third baseman Matt Chapman, who rates as the best defensive third baseman in baseball for the second consecutive season.

Even more impressive? Chapman is rated as the second-best defensive third baseman in 2017 in total value, despite playing 540 fewer innings than Anthony Rendon — the only fielder to finish ahead of him in the past three seasons.

As for some plays where I still see line value, I’m going to back Alex Wood and the Reds once again today against the Pirates — a team who has struggled all season long with left-handed pitching.

They have been 29% below league average against lefties (71 wRC+), the worst team in baseball and a full six points clear of the Royals. Over the past 30 days, the Pirates sport a 68 wRC+ vs. lefties, just one point worse than the Royals.

Alex Wood continues to show promising signs under the hood (71% first-pitch strikes, 14% swinging strikes in his most recent start), and will look to help his team bounce back after Raisel Iglesias blew a ninth-inning lead on Friday.

Another lefty, Kolby Allard, will make his fourth start for the Rangers after coming over from Atlanta at the trade deadline.

Allard is still very young (22) and was the top-ranked high-school lefty in the 2015 draft – so he’s far from a finished product.

But he’s also one of very few pitchers who have made Bo Bichette look foolish thus far:

Kolby Allard, Filthy K (Changeup & 2 Sliders). 😨 pic.twitter.com/1WKWaLnrRm

— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) August 14, 2019

His curveball is supposed to be his best pitch, and yet he’s barely thrown it at the MLB level – as he probably doesn’t have a good feel for it right now.

This is a pitcher gaining confidence with a few starts under his belt, and I’ll back him at plus-money to lead his team to a win for the third straight outing.

Bets (so far) for August 24

  • Arizona Diamondbacks (+111) Game Moneyline
  • Cincinnati Reds (-108) Game Moneyline
  • Chicago Cubs (-137) Game Moneyline
  • Miami Marlins (+110) Game Moneyline
  • Oakland Athletics (-128) Game Moneyline
  • Texas Rangers (+121) Game Moneyline
  • Under 9.5 (+100), Yankees at Dodgers
  • Under 9 (-115), Phillies at Marlins
  • Under 10 (-115), Angels at Astros

Stay tuned on Twitter or follow me in The Action Network App for my entire betting card for Saturday, August 24.

Zerillo’s Full MLB Model, 8/24

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.

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