MLB Player Prop Bets & Picks: 2 Strikeout Totals, Featuring Touki Toussaint & Adam Wainwright (Sunday, August 22)
Todd Kirkland/Getty Images. Pictured: Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Touki Toussaint.
- Touki Toussaint? Adam Wainwright? That's where Mike Ianniello has taken us on Sunday's MLB card.
- Check out his reasoning below on why he likes these starting pitchers and their respective strikeout props.
Throughout this season, I'll be evaluating my favorite MLB player props of a slate based on what the Action Labs Player Prop tool likes — the tool grades each bet on a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the best possible grade.
MLB Player Props & Picks
Touki Toussaint — Over 5.5 Strikeouts (+128)
|Braves vs. Orioles||Braves (-164)|
|Time||1:05 p.m. ET|
The Atlanta Braves are absolutely rolling right now. On Saturday, they set a franchise record with their 12th consecutive road win. They will wrap up the road trip with the former first-round pick Touki Toussaint on the mound.
Entering the season, Toussaint had made just 11 big league starts, mostly due to control issues. He had posted a BB/9 rate of at least 5.6 in each of his first three big league seasons. This year, he has managed to drop that number down to 2.94 this year.
This year, Toussaint has totally changed his approach on the mound, nearly completely ditching his four-seam fastball. It was his most used pitch last season at 36% and now it is his least used pitch at just 2.4%. Instead, he is using his sinker 48.3% of the time, along with a curveball and splitter.
In six starts this season, Toussaint has a 4.01 ERA but most of that came in one blow-up outing against Milwaukee. Take that out and he has a 2.37 ERA, allowing two runs or less in each of his other five starts. He has also been able to rack up a little more than a strikeout per inning. If he can pitch six innings against a Baltimore team ranking 23rd in wOBA, I like him to go over this total.
Action Labs Grade: 10/10
Adam Wainwright — Over 5.5 Strikeouts (+100)
|Cardinals vs. Pirates||Cardinals (-230)|
|Time||2:15 p.m. ET|
Somehow at age 39, Adam Wainwright continues to defy time. Only four players in the entire league this year are older than Wainwright. Yet in his 16th big-league season, he is still one of the better pitchers in the game.
In 24 starts, Wainwright is 11-7 and has a 3.26 ERA. His velocity has not really dropped off at all, averaging 89.6 miles per hour on his fastball but that is right in line with his career average of 90.6 mph. He is missing bats at an 8.2 K/9 rate, which is actually higher than his 7.63 K/9 career average and his second highest mark since 2012.
Wainwright still has one of the best curveballs in the game, throwing it 35.1% of the time and allowing just a .202 average against it. His sinker has been dominant this season allowing just a .183 average and .242 wOBA against it.
The most important thing is he's still pitching deep into games. Wainwright is averaging 6.4 innings per start, pitching at least six innings in 17 starts and seven games in a row. He leads the league with three complete games.
In both of Wainwright’s starts against the Pirates, he has gone over this total. Strikeout out eight in his first outing and seven during a complete-game shutout just 11 days ago. He has allowed just one run in 15 innings against the Buccos this year. Over his career, Wainwright has owned the Pirates.
He is 19-7 with a 3.95 ERA against Pittsburgh in his career, the most wins he has tallied against any opponent. I trust Wainwright to pitch deep into this game for a Cardinals team that needs a win and go over this total.
Action Labs Grade: 10/10