MLB Props Odds, Picks: 2 Bets for Sandy Alcantara and Kyle Gibson (Friday, September 2)
Kirk Irwin/Getty Images. Pictured: Kyle Gibson
- Cy Young favorite Sandy Alcantara is on the mound tonight and his strikeout total has caught the eye of our analyst.
- In addition, a pitcher in one of tonight's late starts has loads of value in the props market.
- Continue reading for a full breakdown of the top prop bets from tonight in Major League Baseball.
I faded Spencer Strider in Thursday's column, seeing value on his under 7.5 strikeouts given our projections.
Strider shoved it in our face by striking out 16 batters over eight almost-immaculate innings. I took some heat on Twitter for that.
So, we take the disgusting loss to the face and keep trusting the +EV projections.
Check out these two today.
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.
Sandy Alcantara Over 5.5 Strikeouts (-150)
|Marlins @ Braves|
|First Pitch||7:20 p.m. ET|
I don't need to tell you just how good Sandy Alcantara has been. After a complete-game, one-run winning performance against the Dodgers last week — which represented his fourth complete game this season — Alcantara has become the far-and-away favorite to capture the National League Cy Young.
Alcantara is not a strikeout pitcher, striking out just 23.2% of batters faced, which evens out to about eight per nine innings.
Instead, he's a workhorse who tries to pitch eight innings every time out. He does so by working ultra-efficiently in the first few frames, forcing groundball outs like crazy, and getting out of innings with just 7-10 pitches. Alcantara's 54.3% ground-ball rate is the third-highest in baseball, and his 185 2/3 innings are 15 more than the next highest total.
But as the game progresses, and we enter the seventh, eighth and ninth innings, "El Caballo" starts to rear back and attempt to overpower batters. His fastball velocity goes up each time through the order.
Sandy Alcántara, Overpowering 3 Pitch K Sequence.
101 & 100 mph Fastballs and 93mph Slider.
9th K. pic.twitter.com/07fLMBKRSU
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) August 28, 2022
Plus, his FIP drops each time through the order:
- 1st time through: 3.09 FIP
- 2nd time through: 2.80 FIP
- 3rd time through: 2.72 FIP
- 4th time through: 2.70 FIP
Therefore, Alcantara is going to create more strikeout opportunities as the game progresses. And, he'll already have had a lot of strikeout opportunities given the length he can provide.
Plus, this is a very good matchup. The Braves have struck out at the third-highest rate over the last 30 days (25.8%) and the second-highest on the season (25.3%). They've allowed three straight opposing starting pitchers to cash their strikeout totals, and nine of the last 12.
Plus, Alcantara has dominated the Braves recently. Check out his last three starts against Atlanta:
- 8/17/2021: 8.0 IP, 105 pitches, 1 ER, 5 H, 1 BB, 30% CSW, 19 swinging strikes, 7 Ks
- 5/22/2022: 9.0 IP, 115 pitches, 0 ER (3 unearned), 6 H, 2 BB, 31% CSW, 21 swinging strikes, 7 Ks
- 5/28/2022: 8.0 IP, 108 pitches, 1 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 35% CSW rate, 23 swinging strikes, 14 Ks
That is complete and utter domination.
Our Action Labs Projections mark Sandy for 6.5 strikeouts today, giving us plenty of value to lay the over here.
Pick: Over 5.5 Ks (-150)
Action Labs Grade: 7/10
Kyle Gibson Over 3.5 Strikeouts (-115)
|Phillies @ Giants|
|First Pitch||10:15 p.m. ET|
It's hard to see Kyle Gibson getting back to his old self. His ground-ball rate continues to drop year over year, and his strikeout rate is down 3% from a peak in 2019.
At the minimum, Gibson has been consistent and slightly above average. He's eaten up 140 innings with an ERA, xERA, FIP and xFIP between 3.99 and 4.09, accumulating 1.8 fWAR in the process.
Gibson gives the Phillies a chance to win, which is great when you can pair him with two top-tier starters in Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola. Philly is 15-10 in Gibby starts this year.
The Phillies trust him to manage at least five innings in every start, and he's managed at least six in 10 of his last 14. That gives him plenty of strikeout opportunities, and he's generally taken advantage. Gibson has struck out at least four in 14 of 24 starts this season, a 58% hit rate that implies -140 odds to the over.
Plus, he should do well against this San Francisco offense. San Francisco has struck out at a top-10 rate against RHPs this season (23.1%) and is 11th over the last month (23.4%). The Giants pair that with MLB's seventh-lowest wRC+ since August 1st.
Gibson has picked up at least four strikeouts in the last three starts against the Giants, including lines of:
- 5/10/2021: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 32% CSW, 6 K
- 6/9/2021: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 33% CSW, 5 K
- 5/30/2021: 6.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 23% CSW, 4 K
Our internal projections mark Gibson for 4.6 strikeouts today, making this one of the best strikeout props on Friday's board.
Pick: Over 3.5 Ks (-115)
Action Labs Grade: 10/10