Zerillo’s MLB Daily Betting Model, Aug. 12: Expect a Pirates-Angels Pitchers’ Duel?
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Mitch Keller
- 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 Monday's slate of games, including how to bet Astros-White Sox (8:10 p.m. ET) and Pirates-Angels (10:07 p.m. ET).
- Plug in your odds to the spreadsheet at the bottom of this article to see where you might have an edge.
The Angels (58-61) and Pirates (48-69) begin an Interleague matchup in Anaheim on Monday, and though this game won’t have an immediate impact on the 2019 playoff race, both teams will send out a couple of young starters who they are looking to develop as rotation pieces for potential runs in 2020.
Jose Suarez will make his 11th start for the Angels, while the Pirates recalled top prospect Mitch Keller from Triple-A to make his fourth career MLB appearance.
Though I don’t see a big edge on either side in this matchup, I did make a play on the total. Where should you lean in this game?
As a quick aside, on Sunday the Baltimore Orioles pulled maybe the biggest single-game upset in MLB history:
Orioles walk-off to beat the Astros!
Biggest MLB moneyline upsets since 2005:
+406: Orioles (Today vs. Astros)
+395: Nationals (2007 at Twins)
+360: Royals (2018 at Yankees)
+351: Tigers (2018 at Astros) pic.twitter.com/uFkOs6ZYCw
— The Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) August 11, 2019
The Orioles led by two runs in the top of the ninth inning before Michael Brantley scored two baserunners runners and himself on a triple down the line, giving the Astros a one-run lead after a defensive misplay in the outfield:
The Baltimore Orioles, 2019: pic.twitter.com/ardpuZbmKR
— Connor Newcomb (@ConnorNewcomb_) August 11, 2019
Not to be outdone, Rio Ruiz launched a 417-foot moonshot to cash those Orioles tickets anyway:
So nice you'll want to hear it twice! 🗣️
— Baltimore Orioles (@Orioles) August 11, 2019
Recapping Yesterday’s MLB Model
At writing yesterday, the model would have gone 2-3 against full-game moneylines and 1-3 against moneylines for the first five innings (F5).
My plays went 5-6-1, and I finished up 1.1 units for the day.
It was a very mixed day in terms of generating Closing Line Value (CLV).
I gained 25 cents overall against the sides that I played, though most of that profit came by way of the Angels moneyline, which moved from +135 to +112.
I lost about 30 cents of vig on the totals that I played, and also had a couple of numbers move away from my bets.
MLB Betting Model for Monday, August 12
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 Orioles, Rays and White Sox as full-game plays. The model also likes the Rays and White Sox as F5 plays.
The Rays are going to use Austin Pruitt as a bulk pitcher against the Padres on Monday.
He is a 29-year-old righty who has bounced back and forth between the Rays’ Triple-A and MLB squads in recent seasons, compiling a 4.19 FIP over 175 innings pitched at the MLB level.
He throws a four-seam fastball (92 mph), cutter or slider (87 mph), curveball (82 mph) and changeup (86 mph) and owns a 49% groundball rate, but Pruitt’s high strikeout rates from Triple-A haven’t translated to the majors.
His swinging-strike rate has increased to a career-high 11.1% this season, and the groundball rate is at a staggering 57% (albeit in a small sample), so I think better days are ahead.
The Rays know how to optimize their pitching staff on these bullpen days, and I typically find them to be undervalued in these spots. I have them as slight favorites in this game against the Padres and was pleased to grab them at plus-money.
Dylan Cease has had two consecutive strong outings for the White Sox, and I’m ready to trust him again on Monday. He threw his fastball just 42% of the time in his last start, a big indicator that he’s confident in his secondary stuff.
I’m not going to back the White Sox to win, but I will take the spread at plus-money, as the White Sox fit this contrarian system for Monday:
I also bet the under in that game.
I also like the under in the Angels-Pirates game that I mentioned before the jump today.
Mitch Keller was running hot in the minors prior to his callup today, with a strikeout to walk ratio of 5:1 over his past five starts, including a 12-strikeout game in his last outing.
He is a former second-round pick, and rates as the Pirates top prospect and the No. 28 overall prospect per MLB Pipeline.
Keller primarily relies on his big fastball (touches 99 mph), sharp slider and biting curveball:
— Alex Fast (@AlexFast8) June 19, 2019
He’s not a finished product, but I’m expecting Keller to make some major noise down the stretch this season.
Note that the Pirates also have the worst offense in MLB vs. lefties per wRC+, so this is also great matchup for Andrew Suarez, making this game a prime candidate for an under.
Bets (So Far) for August 12
- Arizona Diamondbacks (+106) Game Moneyline
- Chicago White Sox (+1.5, +155) Game Spread
- Tampa Bay Rays (+120) Game Moneyline
- Under 10.5 (-108), Boston at Cleveland
- Under 9.5 (-115), Houston at Chicago White Sox
- Under 10 (-110), Pittsburgh at Los Angeles Angels
Zerillo’s Full MLB Model, 8/12
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.