MLB Props Today | Odds, Picks for Kevin Gausman, George Kirby, More (Tuesday, September 26)
Alika Jenner/Getty Images. Pictured: George Kirby
Last week, the Blue Jays took two of three from the Yankees in the Bronx to help strengthen their hold on the second AL wild-card spot. Michael King and Kevin Gausman started the second game of the series. While the Blue Jays pulled away for a 6-1 victory, the first seven innings was a pitchers' duel between them. Tonight, they will oppose each again.
The Cubs are tied for the second NL wild-card spot with Arizona. They may end up facing the Braves in the NLDS. Tonight, they will send their Cy Young candidate Justin Steele to the mound in Atlanta. However, he may have his hands full with MVP candidate Ronald Acuña Jr.
Last night, Justin Verlander dominated the Mariners, unfortunately kept J.P. Crawford hitless and outdueled Luis Castillo. However, we were able to cash on Castillo, who punched out eight in six innings. The Mariners will likely need at least six innings from George Kirby to even up this series.
MLB Player Props For Tuesday, September 26
When betting strikeouts props, I typically try to avoid starters facing a team in consecutive starts. However, there are cases where I make exceptions. Last Wednesday, Kevin Gausman dominated the Yankees with 10 strikeouts while allowing just three hits in six scoreless innings. He is second in MLB with a career-high 232 strikeouts.
Gausman has struck out 10 batters or more in all three starts against the Yankees this season. While not back-to-back, his first two starts against them were close together, coming on April 23rd and then on May 16th. It helps the Yankees have ninth-highest strikeout rate against right-handed pitchers this season and rank third over the last month.
Now, Gausman gets the Yankees at home. His ERA home (3.30) and away (3.27) has virtually evened out over the course of the season. However, Gausman has a 12.2 K/9 at home compared to 11.2 K/9 at home. He has hit this line in eight of 15 starts at the Rogers Centre, punching out 10 in seven of them.
I prefer Gausman in this game because of his dominance at home and the Yankees are more prone to striking out. However, it cannot be ignored that Michael King struck out 13 batters in seven innings against the Blue Jays. If you had parlayed Gausman and King in the neighborhood of 10 batters each, you would have had a massive payday.
There may not be a repeat performance tonight, but you can take Gausman for 10 strikeouts and King for eight at +1513 on FanDuel if you want to sprinkle.
Pick: Kevin Gausman Over 7.5 Strikeouts (-115 at DraftKings)
Last Friday, Ronald Acuña Jr. made history by becoming the fifth player in MLB history to join the 40/40 club. With two more stolen bases, Acuna Jr. will start his own club with 40 home runs and 70 stolen bases. Facing a left-hander tonight may make it more difficult for Acuña to steal a base tonight, but he will likely be on base.
Against left-handed pitching this season, Acuña is slashing .323/.414/.573 with seven doubles, eight home runs and 20 runs batted in. He is 3-for-5 against Cubs lefty Justin Steele, including going 2-for-3 with a double against him last month in Chicago. Acuña will enter tonight's game with a nine-game hitting streak and he has a hit in 15 of his last 16 games. He has a scored a run in 13 of those games.
That has helped Acuña hit this line in 12 of his last 15 games overall. He has also hit this line in 11 of his 15 games at Truist Park and in 108 of 153 games this season. With a 71% hit rate this season and 80% recently, we are getting excellent value on Acuña tonight. Additionally, Steele starting may be getting us a discount because Acuña's hits + runs + RBI line is at 2.5 on some nights.
Acuña has been one of the league's most consistent hitters this season. As the leadoff hitter, he will get four plate appearances for sure and perhaps five depending on how the Braves' offense fares. That should give him enough opportunity to clear this line once again.
Pick: Ronald Acuña Jr. Over 1.5 Hits + RBI (-160 at DraftKings)
Last night, the Astros jumped on Luis Castillo early and got four runs in the first three innings. While he did not post a quality start, Castillo did battle and was able to go six innings. Tonight, I am backing George Kirby to pitch six innings and it is something he has done very consistently.
Kirby has pitched at least six innings in 21 of 29 starts this season and he is averaging 6 1/3 innings per start. He has hit this line in each of his last two starts against the Astros, going seven innings in last year's ALDS and 6 2/3 innings against them in July. In his career, Kirby has a 1.53 ERA in 17 2/3 innings against Houston.
Kirby has allowed three runs in each of his last six starts, so he may not dominate the Astros tonight. However, that has not stopped him from going deep into games. In four of those starts, he completed six innings and he went 5 2/3 innings in another.
Kirby is able to go deeper into games because he is an elite control pitcher. He has walked just 18 batters in 178 innings. Assuming the Astros push across a couple of runs and Kirby walks one or no batters again, he will likely be around 90 pitches. That should put him at six innings and cash his outs recorded line tonight.
Pick: George Kirby Over 17.5 Outs Recorded (-125 at DraftKings)