MLB Props Odds, Picks: 5 Bets For Dinger Tuesday, Including Byron Buxton, Jack Suwinski and More (June 21)
Abbie Parr/Getty Images. Pictured: Byron Buxton
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:
Dodgers at Reds, 6:40 p.m. ET
Pick: Joey Votto +380
Votto has been a frequent pick of mine for Dinger Tuesday in the last couple months as he made a change in his bat by switching to a knob-less one. The results have been impressive. Votto is back up above a 10% barrel rate and has improved his SLG considerably after one of the worst stretches of his career in April and early May.
Cincinnati remains the number one park for home runs in the Statcast park factors at this point in the season and any game in the Great American Ball Park is going to be atop the list of games to choose for this promotion.
Votto gets a matchup with excellent right-hander Tony Gonsolin, but the Dodgers right-hander has a 6% HR/FB rate. That suggests that regression is coming for him, as does his 1.42 ERA with expected indicators closer to 3.00.
Votto opened at +480 and has since come down considerably to +380. If he goes below this number, I’d look to play Brandon Drury — the hitter with the highest barrel rate on the Reds — instead.
Cubs at Pirates, 7:10 p.m. ET
Pick: Jack Suwinski +480
Suwinski made a lot of headlines with his three-homer game on Sunday against the Giants and I was afraid that would hurt his odds ahead of a potential Dinger Tuesday pick.
With a +480 next to his name against a pitcher with home run problems, Suwinski is still an excellent choice. As tempting as it is to pick Pirates top prospect Oneil Cruz, I’m not sure how Suwinski has worse odds.
In the last month (since May 21), Suwinski has the sixth-highest barrel rate in all of MLB. He has strikeout problems and fly ball problems that will keep his overall hitting numbers down across the board, but the power and barrel rate can’t be ignored for home run props.
Suwinski ranks only behind Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Kyle Schwarber, Jake Burger and Ryan Mountcastle barrel rate, and while his mark of 19.6% will not be sustained forever, his raw power should stick.
Cubs starter Matt Swarmer is a former 19th-round pick who has allowed a 14.8% barrel rate and lacks a good enough third pitch after his fastball and slider. The Pirates should be able to get to Swarmer for some dingers.
Tigers at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET
Pick: Rafael Devers +315
The odds are admittedly not great here, but Devers has the second-best barrel rate on the Red Sox and this is a dream matchup for home runs.
Fenway Park is a homer-friendly park to begin with and now we get two of the worst starters going on Tuesday night with Beau Brieske and Rich Hill.
Detroit’s lineup has been quite terrible, but it has a number of big right-handed bats that could slug more against a soft-tossing southpaw in Hill.
Devers has been especially dominant against right-handed pitching. He has 13 homers against righties this season, a 1.023 OPS and a top-30 barrel rate vs. RHP. Throw in Brieske’s 11% barrel rate allowed and I’m happy to take the chalk here.
Guardians at Twins, 7:40 p.m. ET
Pick: Byron Buxton +350
It’s rare we get odds this good on a hitter as elite as Buxton, especially given the poor underlying metrics of Cleveland starter Aaron Civale. I expected Buxton to be in the +200s, but I’m happy to take him at this number.
Buxton has a 17% barrel rate and has shown an ability to generate elite power numbers against even the best of pitchers when he homered twice off Gerrit Cole a couple weeks ago.
Civale has allowed a career-high barrel rate of 10.9% and has an xERA of 5.06, also the worst of his career.
Royals at Angels, 9:38 p.m. ET
Pick: Taylor Ward +540
Ward is in the top-10th percentile in MLB in both xSLG and barrel rate. He’s seen an explosion in his power numbers and production in his age-28 season and now gets a favorable matchup with Royals starter Jonathan Heasley.
Angel Stadium does have the wind blowing out tonight, Heasley has allowed more barrels than league average and Ward is the best combination of price and barrel rate available in this game on Tuesday.
Reid Detmers hasn’t been particularly good either and will regress from his .198 BABIP, so the Royals might also be able to contribute to the home run hitting in this game.
Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani are always decent options for the Angels, but FanDuel knows that too and lines them too low. Ward at +540 is too good to pass up.