MLB Props | Odds, Picks for Lance Lynn & More

MLB Props | Odds, Picks for Lance Lynn & More article feature image

Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images. Pictured: Lance Lynn (White Sox)

  • With all 30 MLB teams in action, there is plenty of value in the player prop market.
  • Tanner McGrath is fading two pitchers' strikeout props.
  • Below, find out which two and why he's targeting them.

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 Wednesday, June 7, including picks for Jon Gray and Lance Lynn.

MLB Player Props For Wednesday, June 7

Jon Gray Under 6.5 Strikeouts (-160)

Rangers vs. Cardinals
First Pitch8:05 p.m. ET
Best LineFanDuel

This line is ludicrous. Gray has cashed over 6.5 strikeouts in two of his past 10 starts, while the Cardinals strike out at one of the lowest rates in baseball.

The recent numbers make the Cardinals an even tougher matchup. The Redbirds are striking out only 19% of the time against righties over the past two weeks, the third-lowest rate in baseball.

Yet, the oddsmakers set Gray's line at a whopping 6.5, even when The Action Network's Player Props Tool and BallParkPal's model project Gray for about 5.2 K.

I'm going to bet on Gray's under — the value is too good to pass up — but there has to be something I'm missing.

Gray's strikeout rate has dropped from 25.7% last season to 20.1% this year. So, my best guess is that books haven't caught up to his drastic decrease in strikeouts.

Or, perhaps the books are still pricing Gray based on his underlying metrics. Gray's Swinging Strike rate currently sits at 11.7%, exactly 0.1% higher than last year's mark.

Hypothetically, Gray still forces Whiffs, but the strikeouts haven't come yet.

However, I dug one level deeper.

The Stuff+ on Gray's fastball and slider have dropped significantly year-over-year, and his fastball velocity is down a tick. After finally breaking through with a league-average Stuff+ rating in 2022, he's back down to 95 across his arsenal in 2023.

I see a few effects of this.

First, Gray's Zone-Swing rates have jumped about 5% and his Zone-Contact rates have jumped about 3%. Additionally, his Called-Strike rate has dropped about 2%.

Second, Gray's early-count strike rate (defined as strikes thrown when the count is 0-0, 0-1, 1-0, or 1-1) has dipped by 3% year-over-year, and he's on pace for a career-low mark in that category.

What does this tell me?

I think Gray has lost some stuff on his fastball and can't attack hitters as much anymore, especially early in counts. Instead, he's throwing his changeup earlier (76% early-count usage rate), falling behind and seeing fewer two-strike counts (about 3% fewer than last year).

This is a long-winded way of saying that Gray is still worth fading at this high number. I don't know why the books are pricing Gray at this number, but it's far too high considering his performance, the Cardinals' plate discipline and the projections.

Pick: Under 6.5 Strikeouts (-160) | Action Labs Grade: 8/10

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Lance Lynn Under 6.5 Strikeouts (-134)

White Sox @ Yankees
First Pitch7:05 p.m. ET
Best LineFanDuel

The thought of backing the current Yankee offense doesn't entice me. This team is significantly worse with Aaron Judge sidelined, and they've allowed five straight pitchers to crush their strikeout prop.

That said, I can't help but fade Lynn at such a high number.

Lynn's strikeout numbers are up, but so are his walks, and his batted-ball profile is a complete mess.

So, Lynn checks in with a 6.55 ERA and a 5.40 expected ERA. He's just getting knocked around like crazy.

Also, I'm not entirely sold on Lynn's improved strikeout numbers. The Stuff+ metrics on his arsenal have dropped for four consecutive seasons, and he's hitting rock bottom in 2023.

Also, his Swinging-Strike and Chase rates have dipped considerably. It seems like fewer strikeouts are on the horizon for Lynn.

The Action Labs Player Props Tool projects him for 6.0 strikeouts on Wednesday, while BallParkPal's model has him at 5.9.

The value seems to be on the under, and I'm looking to fade Lynn more generally, so I'll take a shot with Under 6.5 Ks (-134) here.

Pick: Under 6.5 Ks (-134) | Action Labs Grade: 7/10

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