MLB Props, Best Bets | Top Picks For Paul Goldschmidt & More
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images. Pictured: Paul Goldschmidt (Cardinals)
- Tanner McGrath is looking for extra value for Wednesday's MLB slate so he's targeting three player props.
- Tanner begins with two pitchers who should nail their strikeout props before backing Paul Goldschmidt in San Francisco.
- Read below for a full breakdown of the MLB player props market.
Every day, I try to add an edge to my MLB card by adding 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 my discussions below.
Here are my picks for the MLB slate on Wednesday, April 26, which include Hunter Brown, Logan Gilbert and Paul Goldschmidt.
MLB Player Props For Wednesday, April 26
Hunter Brown Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-155)
|Astros @ Rays|
|First Pitch||6:40 p.m. ET|
We’ve been waiting for a spot to open up in the Astros’ rotation for Brown. It’s finally happened, and it’s glorious.
After carving up Triple-A last season, Brown is proving to be a very productive MLB pitcher. He has a 3.89 ERA through four starts despite a relatively low strand rate (64.5%).
More importantly, Brown is a strikeout machine. He has a Justin Verlander-like delivery that he pairs with electric stuff and high-level command.
Brown is a slider-first pitcher, but it’s almost a fastball considering how hard he throws it. His slider sits between 92 and 93 mph, forcing a 30% whiff rate despite little movement.
However, Brown pairs that slider with a hammer-of-god curveball. It’s a true plus-plus, 70-grade curveball with over 53 inches of drop, five more than the average MLB curveball, which also forces a 30% whiff rate.
Brown also has a hard, high-90s fastball, which he uses to spam the top of the zone.
Put it all together, and Brown has one of the best young three-pitch mixes in the sport.
Línea de Hunter Brown hoy en Atlanta:
4.2 IP | 7 H | 4 R | 4 ER | 2 BB | 7 K
Dejó su ERA en 3.09 y realizó 93 envíos (61 strikes), con una velocidad máxima de 97.8 mph. Su arsenal:
• 34 Slider
• 30 knucklecurve
• 29 fastball
📹: 🍎TV+ pic.twitter.com/MBLE4f7RS7
— Javier Gonzalez (@Astros_Coverage) April 22, 2023
Brown also uses this stuff to produce a 25% strikeout rate, and he’s eclipsed five strikeouts in all four of his MLB starts this season. He has an 11.4% swinging-strike rate and a CSW rate approaching 30%.
And that might be underselling Brown.
Projections are unanimous that he’s underperforming from a strikeout rate perspective, with ZiPS and FGDC both projecting he finishes the season with over 10 K/9.
Projections today are also high on Brown. The Action Labs Player Props Tool projects Brown for 6.6 strikeouts on Wednesday, while BallParkPal’s pitcher simulations put up around 5.5.
The Rays should oblige, considering they usually strike out at a top-10 rate. That number is down in April of this year, but the Rays are too swing-happy for their number to stay near 20% all season.
I love Brown’s stuff, I love his ceiling and I love this strikeout prop today.
Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (-155) | Action Labs Grade: 10/10
Logan Gilbert Over 5.5 Strikeouts (-140)
|Mariners @ Phillies|
|First Pitch||6:40 p.m. ET|
I’m slightly worried about Gilbert moving forward, mostly because his Stuff+ is down drastically.
Hopefully, that’s only a small sample size problem.
But I can’t stay away from Gilbert’s strikeout prop today.
Gilbert added a splitter in the offseason, and it’s already been his best pitch. He’s thrown it only 49 times, but is generating a 33.3% whiff rate and a xBA under .100, adding up to a -3 Run Value.
Look at how deadly this thing is — that’s a lot of drop with even more arm-side run.
Logan Gilbert's new Splitter. pic.twitter.com/aOLIddhk9L
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 2, 2023
Gilbert now has three pitches that could generate a 30% whiff rate (splitter, curveball, slider). His chase rate is up significantly, as his outside-swing rate is up 5% and his outside-contact rate is down 3%.
As a result, Gilbert has crushed his strikeout prop. He’s eclipsed 5.5 strikeouts in all four of his starts this season, recording at least seven in three.
Projections expect another solid performance, as The Action Labs Player Props Tool projects him for 6.0 strikeouts, while BallParkPal’s player simulations project 6.1.
Philadelphia’s lineup strikes out at an average or above-average rate, but Gilbert dominated the Phillies in a mid-May start last season. Gilbert struck out nine Phillies across just 95 pitches, and he has plus strikeout matchups against Brandon Marsh (4 Ks in 10 PAs) and Kyle Schwarber (5 Ks in 6 PAs) on Wednesday.
I’m unsure if the market has caught up to Gilbert’s splitter, so I’ll hammer him to crack six strikeouts again.
Pick: Over 5.5 Ks (-140) | Action Labs Grade: 6/10
Paul Goldschmidt Over 1.5 Total Bases (+100)
|Cardinals @ Giants|
|First Pitch||9:45 p.m. ET|
We’re going back to the well with Goldschmidt’s props. This guy was a cash cow toward the end of last season, and he’s gone over 1.5 total bases in 11 of 23 games this year.
Goldschmidt is actually slightly underperforming in the early going, recording a lackluster — for him — .149 ISO and 138 wRC+.
I suppose you could bet on some normal regression after his MVP season last year, but his early 2023 batted-ball profile looks nearly identical to 2022, so we could also project him for some positive regression.
Also, a good amount of perfectly barreled balls have found gloves, and I’m looking for more to drop going forward.
Anyway, Wednesday is perfect for Goldschmidt to get back on track. He has a great matchup against the Giants.
Anthony DeSclafani is a soft-tossing, sinker-slider pitcher. Meanwhile, Goldschmidt has recorded his highest Run Values against sliders and sinkers this year, slugging around .530 on 206 sinkers and sliders seen.
And Goldschmidt has smashed DeSclafani in the past. Goldy is 14-for-27 lifetime off Tony Disco, with five doubles and two home runs, racking up a .502 xwOBA behind a 92 mph avg. EV and 19.5-degree avg. launch angle.
And if Goldschmidt can’t smash one of DeSclafani’s sinkers or sliders, he’ll have a solid opportunity against San Francisco’s bullpen, which ranks 27th in ERA (5.24) this year.
Goldschmidt has cashed his bases prop in seven straight games against the Giants, including the first two games of this series.
Bet on him to cash it one more time.
Pick: Over 1.5 TBs (+100)
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