Wilson’s MLB Umpire Betting Guide (5/19): Will Ryu’s Hot Run Continue in Cincinnati?

Wilson’s MLB Umpire Betting Guide (5/19): Will Ryu’s Hot Run Continue in Cincinnati? article feature image

Jayne Kamin-Oncea, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Hyun-Jin Ryu

  • Umpires, wind and other situational factors can play a big role in the outcome of an MLB game.
  • Collin Wilson analyzes today's MLB slate and has a play on a pair of Over/Unders.

Today is all about getaway Sunday — and thankfully the Baltimore Orioles will not be included in this column.

Before diving into the analysis below, be sure to check out colleague Danny Donahue’s complementary piece about the importance of monitoring the boys in blue. This column will integrate advanced stats on projected pitchers and hitting lineups to help get wagers to the window. As always, check the Action App for my latest MLB bets.

Find all MLB umpire assignments and betting records here.

Umpire Betting Trends

Tampa Bay Rays at New York Yankees

Umpire: Lance Barksdale

  • Home Record: 268-177, 60.2% (+46.17 units)
  • Under Record: 234-186, 55.7% (+33.93 units)
  • Odds: Rays -150
  • Total: 9
  • Time: 1:05 p.m. EST
  • Projected Wind: Right to Leftfield, 11 mph

With James Paxton on the shelf, the Yankees will go with a bullpen game on Sunday afternoon, using Chad Green as “the opener.”  On the other side, Charlie Morton has collected three quality starts in his past four games and has made a habit out of making Yankees look silly at the plate.

Lance Barksdale will be calling the balls and strikes, further increasing our chances of a low scoring game. Per BetLabs, Barksdale has been a profitable Under Umpire in almost every season of his career.

Blue Bet: Under

Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds

Umpire: Dan Bellino

  • Home Record: 134-115, 53.8% (-4.50 units)
  • Under Record: 132-100, 56.9% (+24.96 units)
  • Odds: Dodgers -165
  • Total: 9.5
  • Time: 1:10 p.m. EST
  • Projected Wind: Right to left, 18 mph

There’s a good recipe of ingredients for a low-scoring game at Great American Ballpark. Dan Bellino, another pitcher-friendly umpire, will be calling balls and strikes and the wind will be howling.

But the most important factor is the Dodgers’ starting pitcher — Hyun-Jin Ryu. The Korean southpaw has an impressive 1.99 ERA since the beginning of 2018, best of any pitcher in the majors.

Ryu has been one of the best ground-ball pitchers in the game. The Reds offense ranks third in soft-contact percentage and 25th in wRC (weighted runs created, a catch-all offensive stat that adjusts for factors like ballparks, etc.). Notice the wind blowing hard to left field, which could be troublesome of a Reds team that is top 10 in pull percentage.

Meanwhile, Tanner Roark is known for avoiding hard contact. That will be needed against a hefty Dodgers offense that ranks third in wRC and third-to-last in strikeout rate. Expect plenty of groundballs, a low number of homers, and an assist from the weather and umpire.

Blue Bet: Under 9.5