Zerillo’s MLB Daily Betting Model, Sept. 29: Projecting Globe Life Park Finale, Bochy’s Farewell
Stan Szeto, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Bruce Bochy
- 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 the New York Yankees at Texas Rangers (3:05 p.m. ET).
- Plug in your odds to the spreadsheet at the bottom of this article to see where you might have an edge.
Heading into the final day of the MLB season, the NL Central is still on the line.
If the Cardinals win, they clinch the division and would begin a playoff series in Atlanta on Thursday.
If the Cubs sweep the Cardinals, and the Brewers also win in Colorado, Milwaukee would fly to St. Louis for a game 163 tiebreaker on Monday afternoon.
All odds as of Sunday afternoon and via PointsBet, where Action Network users get an exclusive 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).
Two other things worth watching – Bruce Bochy’s final game with the Giants, as they take on the Dodgers in San Francisco. And the last game at Globe Life Park before the Texas Rangers move to a new stadium next season.
The Yankees are 11-3 in games started by Chad Green in 2019, but they effectively have nothing to play for in Texas – before they start their playoff series against the Minnesota Twins on Friday.
As of Saturday night, Houston locked up home-field advantage through the World Series
Recapping Yesterday’s MLB Model
At writing yesterday, the model would have gone 5-6 against full-game moneylines and 3-5-1 against moneylines for the first five innings (F5).
My plays went 3-5-1, and I still finished up 0.06 units for the day.
It was a mixed day in terms of generating Closing Line Value (CLV); however, as I only gained 25 cents against the sides that I played.
MLB Betting Model for Sunday, Sept. 29
Today, the model recommends seven full-game moneylines and four moneylines for the first five innings (F5).
As of writing, the 3.5% trigger threshold officially marked the Cubs, Indians, Mariners, Marlins, Orioles, Rangers and Royals as full-game plays. The model also likes the Cubs, Indians, Rangers and Rays as F5 plays.
One potential play that I will avoid is the Rays – whom I show value on in the first five innings (F5) against the Blue Jays. The Rays have nothing to play for until their Wild Card game in Oakland on Wednesday – so I’ll stay away from today’s matchup.
On the other hand, I will back the Angels against the Astros, who will face the Wild Card winner on Friday. Gerrit Cole is starting for Houston, as he makes his final bid for the AL Cy Young award.
I have the Angels listed closer to +260 than +325 for Sunday, and anything over +300 is worth taking a shot at on an underdog on the final day of their season – and against a team that has accomplished all of their own regular-season goals.
Additionally, I’ll back the Cubs for the third consecutive day against the Cardinals, even though St. Louis will send out Jack Flaherty, who has been otherworldly (0.93 ERA, 2.24 FIP, in 14 starts and 92.1 innings) since the All-Star break.
If the Cardinals give away this game and have to play a Game 163 tomorrow without Flaherty, followed by a potential Wild Card game on Tuesday in Washington, they could be in serious trouble.
Anything above +245 on the Cubs is a substantial value, as I have them projected around +205; even with Derek Holland (5.47 ERA, 5.87 FIP, 5.06 xFIP) getting the start.
The Cardinals bullpen has pitched 29 innings in their past five games, compared to 16 for the Cubs, and Chicago could have a rare advantage in the late innings.
Looking at the Marlins, I have been hesitant to bet on Sandy Alcantara, but the recently turned 24-year-old might be turning a corner down the stretch:
Over 10 starts dating back to the beginning of August, Alcantara has a 2.90 ERA (3.70 FIP, 4.57 xFIP), and his strikeout rate has ticked up by nearly a full batter per nine innings; while his walk rate has declined by a similar amount.
His strikeout-minus-walk rate stands at 8.1% on the season, fourth-worst amongst qualified starters. That rate has improved to 13.6% during this recent stretch.
Alcantara ranks in the top eight in pitch velocity on each of his four-seam fastball, sinker, and changeup:
Sandy Alcántara, Disgusting 92mph Changeup. 😧
[H/T many Ninja followers 😃] pic.twitter.com/Xj8wb9Cb99
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 24, 2019
It’s only a matter of time before he improves as a pitcher, and we’re in that midst of his first significant uptick.
The one team that I love for Sunday is the Texas Rangers – and I backed them in a variety of ways,
I show them as a 54% favorite in the first half of the game, with Lance Lynn pitching, and selected both the F5 moneyline and spread.
Remarkably, Lynn’s fastball velocity has continued to rise throughout his career-best season (6.4 WAR):
At 71.3%, Lynn’s combined fastball usage is higher than any other qualified pitcher.
Here’s how he stacks up against that group of starting pitchers:
- WAR: 4th
- FIP: 7th
- xFIP: 24th
- SIERA: 17th
- K-BB%: 13th
Though I do show the Rangers as a slight underdog (48.5%) over the full contest, I played them on the full-game moneyline and spread too.
As a result, I split two units between those four bets (spread and moneyline in each half) and will back 2019’s most surprising pitcher in a good spot:
I would also continue to target unders here on the final day of the regular season.
The under 8 in Braves-Mets triggers several profitable Bet Labs systems, and I projected the total for 7.4 runs; so there’s a bit of line value too.
The wind is blowing in at Citi Field, and the under is 45-29-4 (60.8%), generating a consistent $100 bettor $1,207 (15.5% ROI) at that park when it fits this system:
Additionally, the Mets are on an under streak:
Over the past two seasons alone, if you bet $100 on every under that fit that streak system, you would be 290-240-26 (54.7%) and up nearly $3,700 (6.6% ROI).
Bets (so far) for Sept. 29
- Chicago Cubs (+260) Game Moneyline
- Cleveland Indians (-0.5, -115) F5 Spread
- LA Angels (+330) Game Moneyline
- Kansas City Royals (+169) Game Moneyline
- Miami Marlins (+165) Game Moneyline
- Seattle Mariners (+165) Game Moneyline
- Texas Rangers (+0.5, +100) F5 Spread
- Texas Rangers (+150) F5 Moneyline
- Texas Rangers (+1.5, +100) Game Spread
- Texas Rangers (+165) Game Moneyline
- Under 8 (-110), Braves at Mets
- Under 9.5 (+100), Padres at Diamondbacks
Zerillo’s Full MLB Model, 9/29
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.