MLB Odds & Picks: Saturday Afternoon Best Bets, Featuring Phillies vs. Cardinals & More
(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images). Pictured: Johnny Cueto.
- There's a full slate of baseball games on Saturday and our analysts have found value in the afternoon slate.
- We are targeting a pair of totals for our best bets.
- Keep reading four our picks and full analysis.
There's a full slate of afternoon baseball on Saturday and our staff has identified value and a pair of totals to target.
MLB Odds & Picks
Phillies vs. Cardinals
Tanner McGrath: The wind is projected to be blowing straight in on Saturday afternoon, but I can’t resist fading two of my favorite pitchers to fade.
Kyle Gibson isn’t as bad as his 4.91 ERA shows, but he isn’t much better. A 4.41 xERA is paired with a near 5% drop in his ground-ball rate. His batted ball profile isn’t pretty, either. Meanwhile, Dakota Hudson has been much worse than his 4.29 ERA shows. He’s got a 5.12 xERA and ranks below the 20th percentile of pitchers in:
- Avg. Exit Velocity Allowed (20th percentile)
- Hard-hit rate (16th percentile)
- xBA allowed (6th percentile)
- xwOBA allowed (15th percentile)
- xERA (15th percentile)
- Strikeout rate (4th percentile)
- Walk rate (16th percentile)
- Whiff rate (4th percentile)
- Chase rate (4th percentile)
There is not one part of Dakota Hudson’s game worth appreciating. At least not right now. The bats got shutdown in the battle of the aces last night with Zack Wheeler and Adam Wainwright pitching a combined 16 innings of two-run ball. So, the bats are due!
Both lineups have a wRC+ north of 110 over the past month and the Phillies have posted a 116 wRC+ over the past two weeks. I’d rather avoid the bullpens, considering both units are well rested. But I’ll happily play the first-half over and hope my two “favorite” pitchers blow-up in their usual fashion.
Tigers vs. White Sox
Although the Detroit Tigers have been in an offensive malaise most of the season, they have scored four or more runs in seven of their past eight games. Over the past two weeks, the Tigers have a team wRC+ of 105 and that does not include their production from Friday night. Riley Greene has clearly been the spark the Tigers’ offense needed as they’ve posted a 118 wRC+ since his call up, which is seventh best in MLB.
The Sox’s offense is still hitting well at home as they have posted a 108 wRC+ at home against right handers over the past couple of weeks. Of course, for the total to hit we'll need some lackluster pitching and Johnny Cueto has been rough at home this season. He’s posted a 4.97 ERA and a 5.03 FIP over 29 innings at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Between Johnny Cueto, the warm weather and the White Sox’s potential to also put up big offensive totals, the over seems attainable and should be played at -120 or better. Take it at 9 if it’s in plus money if you’re okay with leaving room for a push.