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MLB Player Prop Picks, Predictions: Joe Musgrove’s Strikeout Total Worth Fading vs. Reds (April 19)

MLB Player Prop Picks, Predictions: Joe Musgrove’s Strikeout Total Worth Fading vs. Reds (April 19) article feature image
Credit:

Denis Poroy/Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Musgrove

  • Two pitchers stand out in the props market on tonight's MLB slate.
  • Houston's Framber Valdez is facing the Angels, while San Diego's Joe Musgrove squares off with the Reds.
  • Continue reading to find out how our expert is betting these two strikeout props tonight.

Tuesday’s MLB slate is loaded thanks to the weather issues on Monday. We have 17 games to pick from, including two doubleheaders.

Today I’m targeting a pair of pitchers who start later this evening, including one under and one over.

Our Action Labs Props tool grades each prop on a scale from 1-10, and I’ll be sure to include the grade for each of my betting recommendations in my discussions below.

Framber Valdez over 4.5 Strikeouts (-135)

Angels vs. Astros Astros -150
First Pitch 8:10 p.m. ET
Best Line WynnBet

Luis Garcia started against the Angels Monday with a 4.5 strikeout total. He struck out his first four batters and was off from there, finishing the game with seven punch outs.

I’m expecting Framber Valdez to be similarly dominant here.

The southpaw struck out at least five batters in 19 of his last 29 starts (66%), and that includes 10 of his last 14 home starts. His strikeout rate jumps significantly when pitching in Houston, as he posted a 9.77 K/9 at home against a 7.17 K/9 on the road in 2021.

Meanwhile, the Angels haven’t gotten off to such a hot start facing lefties this season. Their 30% strikeout rate against that side is fifth in MLB, and it’s over a decent 140-PA sample size.

Valdez also has a solid history against some of the Angels in this lineup. Valdez has:

  • Struck out Shohei Ohtani seven times in 22 PAs
  • Struck out Mike Trout four times in 14 PAs
  • Struck out Jo Adell five times in 12 PAs
  • Struck out Brandon Marsh three times in nine PAs

And in three starts against the Angels last season, Valdez struck out six Angels in each one.

Our Action Labs projections mark Valdez for a whopping 6.4 Ks Tuesday night, giving us over 15% of edge over the current line and making this a top-rated play.

Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (-135)
Action Labs Grade: 10/10

Joe Musgrove under 6.5 Strikeouts (+100)

Reds vs. Padres Padres -210
First Pitch 9:40 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

I had the privilege of watching Musgrove pitch live last week at the Padres’ home opener. I don’t think there is a pitcher in baseball who pounds the zone as much as Musgrove does.

Last season, he posted over 10 K/9 while keeping his BB/9 under about 2.7. Yet, the strikeout numbers seemingly weren’t there.

Musgrove has cashed this 6.5 number in just 14 of his last 34 starts (41%). He’s been moderately better at home, but he only hit seven strikeouts on eight of his 17 starts.

This line could be inflated due to Cincinnati’s lineup. Over the first 10 games of the season, the Reds have posted the third-highest strikeout rate against RHPs (28.1%).

But the Reds only struck out about 23% of the time against RHPs last season. Given the lineup is still rather talented and has plate discipline gurus like Joey Votto and Jonathan India anchoring, I’m expecting some positive regression in the strikeout department.

What better place to start than against Musgrove? In two starts against the Reds last season, Musgrove could only muster five strikeouts despite pitching 11 innings.

Our projections have him slotted for closer to 6.2 than 6.5 strikeouts today, and the even-money price makes Musgrove’s under good value late on Tuesday night.

Pick: Under 6.5 Ks (+100)
Action Labs Grade: 7/10

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