MLB Saturday Forecast: Record-Breaking Weather Conditions in Store for Several Ballparks
Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
- With more hot temperatures on the way, several ballparks may see their highest Weather Rating ever.
- Using The Action Network's betting tools, we look at which games are being impacted the most on today's slate, including Padres-Cubs (2:20 p.m. ET) and Blue Jays-Tigers (6:10 p.m.).
On Friday, the Padres and Cubs played ball in some obscene weather conditions at Wrigley Field, including a 93-degree temperature and 12-mph winds blowing out. But the oddsmakers got the last laugh, as the two teams combined for 11 runs, falling short of the 12/12.5 total.
I’m going to show you a perfect example of how strong weather conditions help hitters and over bettors:
— Strand Sport Stats (@StrandStats) July 19, 2019
On a 60-degree night with winds blowing in, or even no wind at all, that ball is a lazy fly to left. Per Baseball Savant, the expected batting average on a 93-mph batted ball with a launch angle that high is just .150. The Anthony Rizzo grand slam was also a sub-100 mph exit velocity dong.
Even so, the weather can’t help a team like the Padres if they’re going to leave 11 runners on base, as they managed just five runs despite 13 hits, three walks and two Cubs errors.
But have no fear: On Saturday, the thermometer is going to be cranked up a few notches at Wrigley with essentially identical wind conditions. And that’s one of just four places that could set Weather Rating records for their respective ballparks.
Highest Weather Ratings
- Padres-Cubs: 91 (Wrigley record is 90, which was tied yesterday)
- Blue Jays-Tigers: 89 (Comerica record is 88)
- Rockies-Yankees: 87 (Yankee Stadium record is 81)
- Royals-Indians: 84 (Progressive record is 82, which was set yesterday)
- Red Sox-Orioles: 79
- Phillies-Pirates: 76
- Cardinals-Reds: 75
What a slate of weather.
There are not often games with Weather Ratings above 80 that are not at Coors Field or Globe Life Park. Since 2014, there have not been even 100 instances. For all you daily fantasy players, note that pitchers have averaged a Plus/Minus of -2.77 with batters checking in at a +1.09 on DraftKings in these spots (per the FantasyLabs Trends Tool). Odds change, but DFS salaries do not.
Anyway, back to Wrigley. Today’s game features pitchers Joey Lucchesi and Jose Quintana — another battle of the southpaws. As always, the over/under did not open until this morning. Yesterday’s game opened at 12 and rose to 12.5 in about 15 minutes, while today’s affair opened at 11 and has since moved all the way up to 12.5.
To the east in Motown, the Jays and Tigers will begin playing in mid-90s weather with a fairly stiff right-to-left breeze. Pitchers Trent Thornton and Daniel Norris are on the mound, and despite the over getting the majority of support, this total has remained at its opener of 10.5.
In New York, the Rockies and Bronx Bombers will be playing in weather that should easily topple the previous record set at Yankee Stadium. The game will begin with a temperature of 95 degrees and winds blowing out to center at seven mph, but those numbers will be up to 97 and 10 by 4 p.m. The over/under opened at 11 and is up to 11.5 with pitchers Antonio Senzatela and Masahiro Tanaka on the mound.
Cleveland, where temps will range from 88 to 93 degrees, features the last of the four record-setting conditions. A strong 11-mph breeze to right field will also be in play, but the wind by itself has historically not been a strong indicator of runs at Progressive Field. Overs are just 70-79-5 with the wind out to right, although the record improves to 25-26-1 when it’s blowing at 10+ mph per Bet Labs. More than 90% of the early money is on the over, which has caused the total to rise from 10.5 to 11 since opening.
While the Baltimore weather is record-breaking, the over/under may end up being the highest we’ve ever tracked at Camden Yards. After opening at 11.5, more than 70% of bets and 90% of dollars have helped push it up to 12.5, which would break the previous record of 12 set back in 2008.
Although not as historic or noteworthy, the weather in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh is still well above-average. Of all these games, Cards-Reds is the most intriguing. All of these games have double-digit totals — except for the game in Cincy, which is at 9.5. Why? Well, Miles Mikolas and Luis Castillo are pitching.
Not only are both pitchers “good,” but both have ground-ball rates higher than 50%. One would expect this game to have relatively few fly balls, and therefore home run opportunities, through the first six innings or so. More than 60% of early bets and 80% of early dollars are on the Cincy under, but sharp action has moved it up from 9 to 9.5 since opening.