MLB Prop Picks, Predictions: 8 Bets for Dinger Tuesday, Including Trea Turner (July 12)
Todd Kirkland/Getty Images. Pictured: Trea Turner #6 of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Each Tuesday, FanDuel runs a popular promotion that allows each user to bet $25 on one player in every MLB game played that day to hit a home run. Regardless of whether or not the player you bet on homered, you receive $5 in free bets back for each home run hit in the game, with a max return of $25.
Given the average number of home runs in an MLB game in 2021 was 2.44, you will receive an average of $12.20 in free bets back for each $25 home run bet you make, without accounting for the loss in expected value on the vig of the home run yes prop. Even though home runs have been down in the 2022 season thus far, the promotion remains +EV, and there are signs that homers are trending up in the warmer months again.
If you want to learn more on how Dinger Tuesday works, here’s an explainer.
Here are my favorite selections for Tuesday’s slate:
Mariners at Nationals, 7:05 p.m. ET
Pick: Juan Soto +350
Chris Flexen and Josiah Gray both have allowed barrel rates above 10% this season and that makes this game a prime Dinger Tuesday opportunity. Both pitchers project out as fly ball pitchers with potential home run issues in their rest of season projections as well. I have a bet on Washington in the first five innings and thus am going to also target a National with my pick.
Juan Soto hasn't quite seen the same power numbers in terms of home runs as last season, but remember that the same was true at this point last season. Soto struggled, relatively, in the first half despite elite underlying numbers and then produced in a big way in July and beyond.
There are signs that Soto is doing the same thing again this season. The 15-game rolling SLG chart is trending upward and at +350 against Flexen, I'm taking the Nationals' best hitter here. Soto still has an excellent 12.6% barrel rate.
Phillies at Blue Jays, 7:07 p.m. ET
Potential Picks: Matt Chapman and Darick Hall
The Phillies are going to use a bullpen day, and their group has been pretty fortunate to keep the ball in the yard this season. The Phillies bullpen is fourth best in HR/9 allowed and that doesn't seem sustainable given their history and talent. Toronto is pitching Josê Berrios, who is getting hit as hard as any pitcher in MLB this season.
As of writing, we don't have lines up yet, but I'll be targeting two of the hottest sluggers on both rosters as both have posted elite barrel rates in the last month north of 15%.
Dodgers at Cardinals, 7:45 p.m. ET
Pick: Trea Turner +400
Turner has an excellent matchup with Cardinals lefty Matthew Liberatore, who has displayed mediocre stuff and very hittable pitching throughout his young big league career.
Even though the Dodgers don't grade as well against lefties generally, that's not true for Turner. His career batting average is 20 points higher against lefties than righties and he has graded well against curveballs this season. That's the main secondary pitch of Liberatore, who has allowed a hard-hit rate over 50%.
I don't love Busch Stadium for Dingers usually, but it has played as a much more hitter friendly ballpark in 2022.
Brewers at Twins, 8:10 p.m. ET
Pick: Alex Kirilloff +500
A quick look at this game and you probably wouldn't land on Kirilloff as your pick. There's a handful of good pitching options for a mediocre pitching matchup that includes a fly ball pitcher with mediocre stuff in Josh Winder and a 5.70 xERA guy in Jason Alexander.
Kirilloff's season long numbers don't really stand out when you consider his 7.7% barrel rate. That jumps to 10% if you include only the time since he returned from injury on June 17. He's been a solidly better hitter since returning to the lineup and displayed more power in his bat.
As a result, he's undervalued to homer in this game.
Orioles at Cubs, 8:05 p.m. ET
Pick: Christopher Morel +470
Jordan Lyles is consistently one of the worst regular starters in MLB and he has a 5.52 xERA with an 11.6% barrel rate allowed. He faces a Cubs lineup with a good amount of pop that includes consistent homer favorites Patrick Wisdom and Willson Contreras.
Those two are overvalued in the market, and the value instead lies further down the board with rookie Christopher Morel. He has the 10th-best barrel rate in MLB in the last month, with rates comparable to Aaron Judge, Ryan Mountcastle, Rhys Hoskins and better than Giancarlo Stanton.
Morel absolutely has strikeout issues and that will hurt him as a prospect, but that hasn't hurt his ability to hit the ball hard, lift the ball and hit homers. With nine in 200 at-bats in the MLB, Morel is pacing for 30 HR type power this season if he had played a full 162.
That's too good to pass up at Wrigley at +470 against Lyles.
Tigers at Royals, 8:10 p.m. ET
Pick: Vinnie Pasquantino +460
These may be two poor offenses, but the pitchers are bad enough for me to get involved with a Dinger pick. Pasquantino was on last week's card, and similar to Julio Rodriguez when he first came up, you can expect to see me betting Pasquantino quite a bit early in his career until the market adjusts to his real in-game power.
Pasquantino had a .296 ISO in Triple-A this season and has maintained his elite plate discipline thus far in the majors. Pasquantino has more walks than strikeouts through 58 plate appearances in the big leagues.
Even though he only has 39 batted balls, which isn't a particularly predictive sample, it is extremely encouraging that Pasquantino has produced five barrels and two homers already. His average exit velocity and hard-hit rates clearly show he's ready for MLB pitching and now he gets to face Beau Brieske. He's allowed a terrible 11.2% barrel rate as a rookie this year.
Padres at Rockies, 8:40 p.m. ET
Pick: Jorge Alfaro +420
Alfaro ranks in the top 15 in barrel rate since June 1 and he's having a career season for power at age 29. The Padres catcher also mashes left-handed pitching, and that's exactly what he'll see with Rockies starter Austin Gomber. Sixteen of his 46 career homers have come against lefties, despite seeing three times as many at-bats against righties.
Naturally, the prices are depressed across the board for this game because it is in Coors Field. Gomber has been especially terrible at home this season, allowing a .939 OPS to right-handed bats and a .971 OPS at home.
Other Picks: Austin Riley +370 (ATL) | Corey Seager +350 (TEX)