MLB Player Props: Expect Reds to Come out Swinging After No-No

MLB Player Props: Expect Reds to Come out Swinging After No-No article feature image

Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Brett Anderson

  • Using the FantasyLabs Player Prop model, we've found value on the strikeout over/under for Brett Anderson.

On Monday, Blake Snell was able to get off the schneid against the Diamondbacks, cashing our over 6.5 strikeout tickets in the process. Yesterday, I decided to retire on a high note. Just kidding, none of the strikeout props appealed to me and I wasn’t going to force anything. Have no fear, though …

MLB Player Props: Wednesday, May 8

Our FantasyLabs MLB Player Props Tool leverages our projections against odds offered at various sportsbooks and grades each prop on a scale of 1 to 10. All odds as of 2 p.m. ET. View live odds for individual games here.

Athletics SP Brett Anderson

Last night, mediocre pitcher Mike Fiers no-hit the Cincinnati Reds, marking the second time in his career that he’s accomplished the feat. He became the 30th man to have thrown multiple no-no’s, joining the likes of Nolan Ryan, Sandy Koufax, Max Scherzer, Jake Arrieta, Randy Johnson and so on. Fiers, Koufax, Ryan, Johnson — probably who we all think of when naming the best four pitchers in history.

Anywho, the Reds’ bats had been hot heading into the game, as they had scored 37 runs in their four-game series vs. the Giants before they ran into mighty Fiers.

Tonight, they’ll look to re-flip the switch against Brett Anderson — another dandy of an arm. Anderson boasts a 4-2 record and ERA of 3.89, both decent enough, but he’s really nothing special.

Here’s what he’s done since 2015:

  • 364.1 innings pitched, 4.55 ERA , 5.63 K/9

Just not impressive whatsoever. Of 179 pitchers with at least 300 innings pitched over that span, his K/9 ranks 175th.

Year in and year out, he has trouble striking out six batters per nine, which means that on average, he’d strike out fewer than four batters if he went six innings. In 24 starts over the past two years, here’s how many starts he’s had with each strikeout total:

  • 0: 2
  • 1: 3
  • 2: 5
  • 3: 5
  • 4: 6
  • 5: 1
  • 6: 2

While six strikeouts may be a so-so game for some pitchers, that’s essentially Anderson’s ceiling and both of those games happened to come against the Rangers last season, a team that ranked fourth in strikeout rate.

As you can see, chances are Anderson ends up with either two, three or four strikeouts today. There’s not a ton of wiggle room to be had.

Considering the Reds were just embarrassed to the tune of zero hits against Mike Fiers, I think they’ll be swinging early in counts to ensure they put the ball in play. Can’t get hits if you don’t swing the bat.

We’re projecting 2.9 strikeouts for Anderson. His over/under is just a hair higher than that, but with a plus-money payout on the under, it’s a fine choice. Of course, if you can find a 3.5 somewhere, that’d be even better.

The Pick: Under 3 (+115)