MLB Props Today | Best Bets For Eduardo Rodriguez, Shohei Ohtani, More (Thursday, March 30)
Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images. Pictured: Shohei Ohtani
I love the spring, but not just because the freezing winter temperatures begin to fade away. It also means the return of the MLB season.
This year, we were treated to meaningful baseball a bit earlier with the World Baseball Classic. However, nothing many things top the excitement of Opening Day around the league.
This year, all 30 teams will be in action on Opening Day. That means there will be an endless amount of player props to choose from. These are the three that I like the most. Hopefully, today begins a long and very profitable baseball season.
MLB Player Props For Thursday, March 30
Austin Riley Over 1.5 Total Bases (+105)
|Braves vs. Nationals|
|First Pitch||1:05 p.m. ET|
Last year, Austin Riley set career-highs with 39 doubles and 38 home runs. He hit .273 and had a slugging percentage of .528. Much of that damage came against left-handed pitchers. Against LHP, Riley slashed .329/.413/.671 last season. He had to crack a smile when he saw Atlanta’s Opening Day opponent and Washington’s starter.
Patrick Corbin will get the ball for the Nationals after being arguably the worst starting pitcher in the major leagues last season. He was 6-19 with a 6.31 ERA and 1.69 WHIP. In his career, Riley is 8-for-28 (.286) with three doubles and two home runs against Corbin.
Riley will take care of this line very quickly with a double or home run. Given his track record against Corbin, there is a good chance that Riley gets an extra base hit.
Riley hit four of his 38 home runs at Nationals Park last season, his most in any road ballpark. However, two singles would do the trick as well. However he gets it done, I like his chances to get two bases.
Pick: Austin Riley Over 1.5 Total Bases (+105)
Eduardo Rodriguez Over 3.5 Strikeouts (-145)
|Tigers vs. Rays|
|First Pitch||3:10 p.m. ET|
Last year, Eduardo Rodriguez played his first season in Detroit to kick-off a five-year deal. Unfortunately for him, it was a rough year on and off the field. He was limited to 17 starts for personal reasons. He worked 91 innings, had 72 strikeouts and a 4.05 ERA. As Rodriguez gets ready for his second consecutive Opening Day with the Tigers, he will see a familiar opponent.
Rodriguez had many AL East starts against the Rays as a member of the Boston Red Sox. His lone start last year against Tampa Bay was rocky. He recorded just one out, gave four hits, three earned runs, two walks and did not record a strikeout.
However, Rodriguez recorded four strikeouts in 10 of 17 starts last season. He also has 80 strikeouts in 67 2/3 career innings against the Rays.
There is a lot of juice with this line, however, BetMGM has it at -150. For a straight bet, it may be not playable much past those odds, but I do expect it to hit.
Tampa Bay had the 12th-most strikeouts last season and Rodriguez may not even have to pitch long to get four. At one strikeout per inning, Rodriguez could clear this line in the fourth inning.
Pick: Eduardo Rodriguez Over 3.5 Strikeouts (-145)
Shohei Ohtani Over 6.5 Strikeouts
|Angels vs. Athletics|
|First Pitch||10:07 p.m. ET|
On the first day of the season, why not bet on the best player in the sport? That would be Shohei Ohtani, who will be starting on the mound and batting on Opening Day against the Oakland Athletics.
Tonight, I am going to focus on Ohtani as a pitcher. This will be the second consecutive Opening Day start for Ohtani after he gave a run on four hits and struck out nine against Houston last year.
This year, Ohtani gets a far easier assignment against the Athletics as they are a team he has dominated in his career. In 10 career starts against Oakland, Ohtani has a 2.50 ERA and 69 strikeouts in 57 2/3 innings. With a career average of 6.9 strikeouts against the A’s, an average outing would clear this line. However, Ohtani has had seven starts with six or more strikeouts against the A’s. In five of them, he finished with seven or more.
Last year, Oakland was dead-last in batting average at .216 and ranked 15th in MLB in strikeouts. Offense should continue to be a struggle for the A’s this season, particularly facing Ohtani in the season opener.
It is also worth noting that Ohtani is averaging about 5.7 innings per start in his career against Oakland. On Opening Day, I would not expect Ohtani to work longer than six innings. However, that may be just enough to clear this line.
Pick: Shohei Ohtani Over 6.5 Strikeouts (-120)
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