MLB Props Today | Best Bets For Jordan Montgomery, Edward Cabrera (Monday, May 22)

MLB Props Today | Best Bets For Jordan Montgomery, Edward Cabrera (Monday, May 22) article feature image

Jasen Vinlove/Miami Marlins/Getty Images. Pictured: Edward Cabrera

Every day, I try to add an edge to my MLB betting card by selecting a few player props using our Action Labs projections.

Our Action Labs Player 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 picks in the discussion below.

Here are my picks for the MLB slate on Monday, May 22.

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MLB Player Props For Monday, May 22

Jordan Montgomery over 5.5 strikeouts (-105)

Cardinals @ Reds
First Pitch6:40 p.m. ET
Best LineDraftKings

Jordan Montgomery: The savior of the St. Louis pitching staff. The Ace that was promised.

Monty's been unable to replicate his star-studded second half of 2022, and his 4.21 ERA doesn't inspire much confidence. But don't be fooled; this is the best pitcher in the eastern part of Missouri.

Montgomery has been fine, as his expected statistics align with his actuals. His .321 BABIP and 3.97 xFIP indicate potential positive regression, but I'd wish he'd cut down the free passes (2.28 per nine innings).

Montgomery's strikeout metrics are slightly better than last season but are still down overall from his time with the Yankees. That said, he's still generating whiffs with his changeup (37.7% rate in 2023) and the curveball whiffs are beginning to come back.

Montgomery struck out seven Brewers across 98 pitches with a 35% CSW rate in his past start. Three of those Ks were on the curve.

That marked the fourth start in five tries that Monty has eclipsed six strikeouts. He's got a 10.7% Swinging Strike rate during that stretch, which is a marked improvement over his first four starts (8.7%).

Monty should keep the good times rolling on Monday, given the Reds are an ideal matchup.

The Reds struck out at the sixth-highest rate against southpaws last season (24.2%) and are on pace for the eighth-highest rate this year (24.5%). They boast a team wRC+ under 90 during that time.

Additionally, the Reds rank among the bottom-10 teams in Weighted Curveball, Changeup and Sinker runs created. Monty's got the platoon advantage and the arsenal advantage in this one.

In his lone start against the Reds last season, Monty struck out nine Reds across 5 1/3 innings and 100 pitches, tallying a 35% CSW rate.

The Action Labs Player Props Tool projects him for 6.3 strikeouts today, while BallParkPal projects him at 5.7.

Either way, the models and historical trends love Montgomery today.

Pick: Over 5.5 Ks (-105)

Action Labs Grade: 8/10

Edward Cabrera over 4.5 strikeouts (-140)

Marlins @ Rockies
First Pitch8:40 p.m. ET
Best LineBetMGM

It has not been an ideal start to the season for Edward Cabrera. He's walking too many batters (16.4%) and getting barreled up with ducks on the pond (9.3% Barrel rate, 42.3% Hard-Hit rate). As a result, Cabrera has a 5.13 ERA through nine starts this year.

Luckily, Cabrera is due for some positive regression. He boasts a 4.52 xERA and 3.97 xFIP alongside a steadily increasing ground ball rate (53.6%), and his inflated HR/FB rate should come down (21.4%).

It's a mixed bag with Cabrera, but he's beginning to harness his strikeout potential. He's striking out over 12 batters per nine innings so far, just eclipsing a 30% strikeout rate.

As a result, Cabrera has struck out at least five batters in six consecutive starts. He's struck out at least six batters in five of those starts and has accumulated a whopping 45 Ks in 28 2/3 innings during the stretch.

The key is Cabrera's disgusting changeup. It sits between 92 and 93 mph, making it the hardest-thrown changeup in baseball. The pitch has generated a Whiff rate over 40% this season.

However, Cabrera has also improved his curveball, as that pitch has a -2 Run Value behind a 39.8% Whiff rate.

Edward Cabrera’s best start this year, by far.

0 walks is the main takeaway for me. His only damage came on the Corey Dickerson home run in the 2nd inning.

Induced 6 whiffs on 12 swings via the curveball (42% CSW) and 9 whiffs on 18 swings for his changeup (37% CSW)

— Alex Krutchik (@AlexKrutchikCJN) May 18, 2023

Cabrera struggles with control and hard contact, but he won't struggle in the strikeout department.

I also wouldn't be scared of the Coors Field effect. Cabrera walked into Coors Field last year and struck out nine Rockies across 94 pitches, putting up an absurd 43% Whiff rate in the start.

Our Action Labs Player Props Tool projects Cabrera for 5.9 strikeouts on Monday, while BallParkPal's model projects a whopping 6.6. There's so much value on Cabrera over 4.5 Ks that I'm also considering betting the over 5.5 number available at plus-money on FanDuel.

Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (-140)

Action Labs Grade: 8/10

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