MLB Daily Betting Model, 5/11: Will Kevin Gausman Shut Down D-Backs?

MLB Daily Betting Model, 5/11: Will Kevin Gausman Shut Down D-Backs? article feature image

Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kevin Gausman

  • Sean Zerillo's MLB model helps to find edges in betting moneylines and over/unders for the full game and First 5 (F5) innings.
  • He analyzes the full slate of games on May 11 with his model below, and highlights Angels-Orioles (4:05 p.m. ET) and Indians-Athletics (4:05 p.m. ET) as potential edges.
  • Plug in your odds to the spreadsheet at the bottom of this article to see where you might have an edge.

On Friday, Luis Castillo was basically unhittable for six innings in San Francisco, allowing a single, a double, and five walks with 11 strikeouts in a 7-0 shutout victory.

Per Ryan Bloomfield of Baseball HQ, Castillo is the only starter with a 59% groundball rate and a 30% strikeout rate, and his changeup is the ONLY PITCH in baseball with a 30% whiff rate:

When you can paint upper 90’s with ridiculous movement:

How do you respond when Castillo pulls the string like Bugs Bunny?

Recapping Yesterday’s MLB Model

At writing yesterday, the model would have gone 0-4 against full-game moneylines, and 0-1 against moneylines for the first five innings (F5).

This is why I never play the numbers blindly and have mostly avoided the Marlins, Orioles, and Royals, who are flagged virtually every day.

My actual picks went 2-6, and I was down 2.85 units for the day.

It was a tough-luck loss with Tampa Bay, which was my biggest bet of the day. The Yankees scored three of their four runs via a passed ball on a cross-up (after an error), and then an infield pop up that hit The Trop’s roof and dropped in for a single.

Tyler Glasnow also removed himself from the game with forearm tightness, which is the worst possible news, but perhaps not the most surprising outcome.

Apparently, Glasnow will only miss 4-6 weeks with a forearm strain, but injuries like this do compound over time. If he’s on your fantasy team, I would look to trade him when he returns.

It’s not much consolation, but I have shown extremely positive closing line value of late — the results just haven’t been going my way.

The Rays moneyline moved 33 cents from where I played it at open (-135 to -168), I gained 17 cents on the Cleveland moneyline (+148 to +131), and five cents on the Reds F5 spread (-110 to -115), but lost five cents on the Padres line (+160 to +165).

On Deck for Saturday, May 11

All odds as of Saturday morning (view live odds). Stay tuned on Twitter or follow me in The Action Network App for my entire betting card for Saturday, May 11.

The model recommends seven full-game moneylines and three moneylines for the first five innings (F5) on Saturday. 

As of writing, the 4% trigger threshold officially marked the Baltimore Orioles, Detroit Tigers (Game 1), Pittsburgh Pirates, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners, and Texas Rangers as the full-game plays. It also likes the Giants, Orioles, and Tigers, in addition to the Atlanta Braves as F5 plays.

I selected the Orioles and Tigers F5 lines; a rarity for me as I have mostly avoided those teams.

You’re getting a nice price on the Tigers with Spencer Turnbull, whose 2019 metrics (3.30 FIP, 4.25 xFIP) outclass his opponent Michael Pineda (4.92, 4.69). Turnbull throws up to six pitches, with a fastball, slider, and changeup that all rate average or better; but his curveball is what jumps off the screen:

In Baltimore, Dylan Bundy (5.78 FIP, 5.00 xFIP) takes on Matt Harvey (5.46 FIP 5.05) in what could prove to be a high-scoring affair. Harvey has looked completely hopeless, striking out fewer than 5.5 batters per nine innings with a 1.57 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

At least Bundy is generating whiffs (14.4%) and striking guys out (24.5%, the same rate as 2018). His problem has always been the home run ball, surrendering 41 in 2018 (2.15 HR/9) and nine in 35 innings this season (2.27 HR/9).

Bundy carries a career 14.6% home-run-to-flyball ratio, but that’s been over 18% since the beginning of last season. It’s certainly a legitimate weakness, but he’s also due for a hint of regression, too, and should probably be slightly favored in the first half of the game.

Instead, we’re getting the Orioles at +117.

The Oakland Athletics are only a small edge in my projections, but they have seen sharp action today, likely as a result of Cleveland’s bullpen situation. The Athletics and Indians went 12 innings last night, and Cleveland starter Cody Anderson only pitched three innings. That means the Indians ended up using three extra pitchers in the game.

Cleveland will be looking to ride Trevor Bauer deep into this ballgame, but he’s surrendered 12 runs in 12 innings in his last two starts against the Marlins and White Sox.

Despite Bauer’s struggles, the Athletics are still an extremely contrarian side, as we’re backing Aaron Brooks (4.91 xFIP) with the public looking for a bounce-back win from the Tribe.

The Pirates are also a contrarian side today against the Cardinals after a 2-1 victory last night. Going against the public is a scary proposition, but is typically profitable in divisional games.

I also like the Braves as a short favorite in the First 5 tonight against the Diamondbacks. Atlanta has had bullpen issues, losing Arodys Vizcaino for the season and recently demoting A.J. Minter to the minor leagues, so I will look to avoid the back half of this game in what has been a tight series.

Arizona’s Merrill Kelly keeps hitters off-balance with a diverse arsenal, but he is visually unimpressive with below average command, and the numbers bear it out: 5.25 FIP, 4.82 xFIP, 9.3% swinging strike rate.

While Kevin Gausman is very enigmatic, his strikeout rate (26.3%) and whiff rate (13%, 10.7% career) are higher than ever in 2019, as he continues to increase the use of his splitter.

Gausman threw his slider about 14% of the time with the Orioles; that’s down to 2% in Atlanta, and his splitter usage has increased from 19% to 33%.

Bets (So Far) for May 11

  • Atlanta Braves (-110) F5 Moneyline
  • Baltimore Orioles (+117) F5 Moneyline
  • Detroit Tigers (+135) F5 Moneyline
  • Oakland Athletics (+120) Game Moneyline
  • Pittsburgh Pirates (+165) Game Moneyline
  • Under 10.5, Seattle at Boston
  • Under 9, Philadelphia at Kansas City

I’ll be monitoring other potential plays throughout the day based upon signals and movement in the betting market.

Stay tuned on Twitter or follow me in The Action Network App for my entire betting card for Saturday, May 11.

Zerillo’s Full MLB Model, 5/11

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.