MLB Sharp Report: Pros Betting Angels-Rays, 2 Other Friday Games

MLB Sharp Report: Pros Betting Angels-Rays, 2 Other Friday Games article feature image

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Shohei Ohtani

  • Wiseguys are betting two over/unders and one moneyline on "Fade-the-Public Friday."
  • Sharps are getting down on Angels-Rays, Pirates-Marlins and Rangers-Reds (all at 7:10 p.m. ET).
  • Using the tools available at The Action Network, we analyze how pros are betting each game.

Wiseguys got back to their winning ways yesterday, going 2-1 with their Thursday plays. Now it’s on to “Fade-the-Public Friday.”

Historically, Friday is the best day of the week for sharps because casual bettors are finishing their workweeks and are more apt to get down on games, leading to higher-than-usual ticket counts and more contrarian value. With NBA and NHL officially over, baseball is now the only game in town for the foreseeable future, which means public money will be flooding the market even more.

After analyzing Friday’s stacked 15-game schedule using the betting tools available at Sports Insights and The Action Network, I’ve identified sharp action coming down on a trio of MLB games.

>> All odds as of 2:10 p.m. ET.  Download The Action Network App to get real-time MLB odds and track your bets.

Betting Terms to Know

Steam Move: Sudden, drastic and uniform line movement across the market caused by an overload of sharp action from respected players.

Reverse Line Movement (RLM): When the betting line moves in the opposite direction of the betting percentages. It’s a top smart money indicator.

Line Freeze: When one side is getting heavy betting, but the line won’t budge, indicating sharp liability on the other side.

Juice: The tax or commission that bettors must pay sportsbooks in order for them to accept your wager. A -115 juice means a bettor would have to wager $115 to win $100.

Los Angeles Angels (34-35) @ Tampa Bay Rays (41-27)  

7:10 p.m. ET | Andrew Heaney (0-1, 5.40 ERA) vs. Blake Snell (4-5, 3.50 ERA) 

Wiseguys cashed their Angels-Rays under in last night’s series opener. Tonight, Average Joes see Andrew Heaney’s bloated ERA combined with a low total and that’s all they need to know. Easy over. But sharps see rare contrarian under value with ace Blake Snell on the mound.

This total opened at 8. Currently 71% of bets are taking the over, yet we’ve seen this line tumble to 7. This is a classic case of sharp reverse line movement, with books taking in heavy under smart money which forced them to drop the line despite the lopsided public over betting.

Using our Sports Insights Bet Signals, we tracked eight separate steam and reverse line moves on the under, all coming at 7.5 (not 7). Reading between the lines, sharps are telling you the hook (extra half-run) is crucial, that way a 4-3 game cashes instead of pushes.

The under is receiving only 29% of bets but 51% of dollars, further evidence of pro wagers backing a low-scoring game.

James Hoye is also behind the plate tonight. Since 2005, the under has won 10.37 units with Hoye calling balls and strikes.

And oh yeah, Tropicana Field is one of the top under stadiums historically, especially in non-division games (54.8%, 32.12 units won since 2005).

Sharp angle: Under (moved from 8 to 7)

Pittsburgh Pirates (30-38) @ Miami Marlins (24-42)

7:10 p.m. ET | Steven Brault (2-1, 5.05 ERA) vs. Trevor Richards (3-6, 3.31 ERA) 

The Pirates are mired in a 7-game losing streak. What better opponent to get off the schneid against than the cellar-dwelling Marlins?

This game opened at a pick’em, with both sides listed at -110. Currently 55% of bets are backing the Buccos, however we’ve seen this line move away from Pittsburgh (-110 to +106) and toward Miami (-110 to -116).

Why would the oddsmakers hand out a better payout to Pirates backers if the public is already on them?

When betting on sports, always remember: If it looks too good to be true, chances are it is.

We noticed sharps hammer the Marlins at -112 and -115, triggering a pair of reverse line moves across the market. We haven’t seen any conflicting signals (or buyback) on the Pirates.

This contrarian favorite spot, also known as fading the trendy dog, has been a reliable money maker for the pros this season. According to our Bet Labs database, unpopular favorites (receiving less than 50% of bets), have gone 90-58 (60.8%) in 2019, winning 15.03 units with a 10.2% return on investment.

Sharp angle: Marlins (moved from -110 to -116)

Texas Rangers (36-32) @ Cincinnati Reds (30-36)

7:10 p.m. ET | Jesse Chavez (2-2, 3.62 ERA) vs. Tyler Mahle (2-6, 4.21 ERA)

Recreational bettors are conflicted and don’t know which way to go with this interleague series over/under. They see homer-happy Great American Ballpark and think easy over, but are nervous because of the high total.

Not the sharps. They’ve taken a clear position.

This total opened at 10. Currently 60% of bets are taking the over, indicating a slight public lean. However, a whopping 80% of dollars have come in on the under. This massive bet vs. dollar discrepancy signals heavy smart money from pro bettors sweating a low-scoring game.

This influx of wiseguy money forced oddsmakers to drop the total down from 10 to 9.5. The under 9.5 is even being juiced up to -120, which means liability remains on the under despite the total falling (it might even go further down to 9).

We noticed a trio of steam and reverse line moves on the under, the first at 10 and two more at 9.5.

Historically, interleague showdowns have provided an edge to unders, mostly due to the lack of familiarity which provides an advantage to pitchers. Since 2005, the under has won 5.99 units in interleague play. This might not seem like much, but in comparison overs have lost 185.03 units.

When an interleague total falls at least a half run, the under has won 19.85 units.

Sharp angle: Under (moved from 10 to 9.5)

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