Zerillo’s MLB Daily Betting Model, 8/4: Will D-Backs’ Offense Stay Hot vs. Nats?
Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Patrick Corbin
- 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 Sunday's slate of games, including how to bet Reds-Braves (1:20 p.m. ET) and Red Sox-Yankees on Sunday Night Baseball (7:05 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 NL-East leading Braves (66-46) outlasted the Reds (51-48) in 10 innings on Saturday, winning 5-4 on a walk-off single by Ronald Acuna Jr.
Atlanta edged ahead 4-3 in the eighth inning without putting a ball into play, as Amir Garrett and Michael Lorenzen combined to walk four batters before Cincinnati re-tied the game in the ninth inning off of new Braves closer Shane Greene.
The Reds ran out of position players in the game, forcing Raisel Iglesias to take an at-bat in the 10th inning before being lifted for a new pitcher. Now 6.5 games back of the wild card (despite a +28 run differential), the Reds are going to need to roll off a winning streak to stay relevant in the playoff race.
Reds-Braves was just the start of the craziness on Saturday.
We didn’t have any pitchers dominating defensively in left field like Vince Velasquez, but we did see a more position players take the mound.
The Nationals gave “Baby Shark” enthusiast Gerardo Parra a turn, but things really got fun when Brian Dozier came in to pitch to his former infield partner in Minnesota, Eduardo Escobar, with former Twin Kurt Suzuki also catching for Dozier.
Dozier, Escobar, and Suzuki are on a group text where the two Nationals torment their former teammate with pictures of cats, but it was Escobar who got the last laugh on Saturday as part of a seven RBI night:
All smiles on this home run! 😁 pic.twitter.com/QPI6MAnF1t
— ChangeUp on DAZN (@changeupondazn) August 4, 2019
Walker Buehler dominated the Padres: 9 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 15 K
He is now the only Dodgers pitcher other than Sandy Koufax with two games of 15 or more strikeouts in the same season, and he also joins this exclusive group:
Pitchers with multiple 15+ K, 0 BB games in a single season (since at least 1908):
2019 Walker Buehler
2000 Pedro Martinez
1999 Pedro Martinez
1984 Dwight Gooden
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) August 4, 2019
Nelson Cruz had ANOTHER three home run game for the Twins, and is getting better with age:
— MLB (@MLB) August 4, 2019
The 39-year-old’s first three-homer game came on July 25, after more than 1,640 MLB games. Cruz has 390 career home runs, and 233 of those (59%) have been hit since 2014.
The Astros also threw a combined no-hitter in Aaron Sanchez’s first start, so, yeah, it was quite a unique evening of baseball:
Quite the day in MLB:
This is the 1st time in MLB history there was a no-hitter (combined or individual), a 3-HR game and a 15-K game on the same day.
— Stats By STATS (@StatsBySTATS) August 4, 2019
Recapping Yesterday’s MLB Model
At writing yesterday, the model would have gone 2-3 against full-game moneylines and 2-4 against moneylines for the first five innings (F5).
My plays went 7-3, and I finished up 2.17 units for the day.
It was an extremely positive day in terms of generating Closing Line Value (CLV).
I gained 97 cents overall against the seven sides that I played, beating the closing line on each. And the Tigers F5 spread also flipped from +0.5 (-120), to -0.5 (+108); another big win.
The Tigers F5 moneyline opened at +115 and closed at -125. That opening number was one of the silliest lines I have seen all season, and the market proved me correct.
None of the totals moved off of my number, though I did lose 20 cents worth of vig.
MLB Betting Model for Sunday, August 4
Today, the model recommends seven full-game moneylines, and three moneylines for the first five innings (F5).
As of writing, the 3.5% trigger threshold officially marked the Brewers, Diamondbacks, Giants, Orioles, Reds, Royals, White Sox, as full-game plays. The model also likes the Reds, Red Sox, and White Sox as F5 plays.
I played every team except for the Orioles, and I think that the Phillies-White Sox game sets up for a sneaky under even though I projected the game for 10 runs, and the total has fallen from 10.0 to 9.5
Does anything jump out to you about Reynaldo Lopez’s pitch mix adjustment against righties this season?
Unless you have a particularly elite changeup, you shouldn’t be throwing it to same-sided hitters so frequently. And now Lopez is fastball-slider roughly 90% of the time against righties.
How about vs. lefties?
Slightly fewer fastballs and changeups, and more curveballs.
His past four starts have produced eight walks against 31 strikeouts with a 14% swinging-strike rate, about 4% above his season average.
Meanwhile, Drew Smyly has looked extremely sharp in his first two starts with the Phillies (13 IP, 8 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 13 K), and I think he can mostly keep the White Sox offense down, but he’s still far too big of a favorite in this matchup.
I won’t go into Tyler Beede and his slider again, I did that on July 30, and July 19, but he is a pitcher that I will continue to back and this Giants team is red hot. I’m not going to overthink it, though I do have concerns about him controlling his breaking stuff in the thin air in Colorado.
Without harping too much on the Diamondbacks, they continue to beat up good teams and stay in the wild card hunt, and they have an ideal matchup for their offense today vs. a lefty (114 wRC+, 5th) and a pitcher they know well in Patrick Corbin.
I like what Adrian Houser is doing for the Brewers, averaging over a strikeout per inning with a 54% groundball rate.
Lastly, Sonny Gray and the Reds are probably my favorite bet for today. Julio Teheran’s 5.16 xFIP screams regression against his 3.38 ERA, but Teheran is a guy who always seems to be able to out-pitch his peripheral stats.
Conversely, Gray seems to pitch to his underlying stats, and his ERA (3.45), FIP (3.50, 17th), and xFIP (3.46, 13th) place him as a clear top 20 pitcher in 2019.
He more than doubled the horizontal break on his slider last season, giving it significantly more depth:
Gray’s slider ranks fifth in weighted slider value on a per-pitch basis, giving him a second plus-pitch to go along with his changeup.
Sonny Gray, Filthy 86mph Slider. 😨 pic.twitter.com/Fk49jXhOjk
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 22, 2019
Bets (So Far) for August 4
- Arizona Diamondbacks (+145) Game Moneyline
- Boston Red Sox (-107) F5 Moneyline
- Cincinnati Reds (+110) F5 Moneyline
- Cincinnati Reds (+115) Game Moneyline
- Milwaukee Brewers (+131) Game Moneyline
- San Francisco Giants (+120) Game Moneyline
- Over 11.5 (+100), Tigers at Rangers
Zerillo’s Full MLB Model, 8/4
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.