Wednesday MLB Betting Picks, Predictions: Our Bets for Orioles vs. Mets, Dodgers vs. Diamondbacks (Sept. 9)
Steven Ryan/Getty Images. Pictured: Pete Alonso
After a few loaded, doubleheader-filled baseball slates, Wednesday’s schedule is a bit more on the traditional side.
Twelve 9-inning games will get underway tonight, and two of them have caught the attention of our experts. Find out how we’re betting Orioles-Mets and Dodgers-Diamondbacks below.
Advanced Stats Glossary
FIP or Fielding Independent Pitching measures what a pitcher’s ERA would look like if the pitcher experienced league-average defense and luck. xFIP is a regressed version of FIP that adjusts or “normalizes’ the home run component based on park factors.
wRC+ or Weighted Runs Created Plus takes the statistic Runs Created and adjusts that number to account for critical external factors — like ballpark or era. It’s adjusted, so a wRC+ of 100 is league average, and 150 would be 50 percent above league average.
wOBA or Weighted On-Base Average is a catch-all hitting metric with more predictive value than on-base percentage. An average MLB hitter can be expected to post a .320 wOBA. xwOBA is a regressed version of wOBA that accounts for variables like park factors.
Danny Donahue: Mets -1.5 (+110) vs. Orioles
Everything about this line is gross, which unfortunately means I don’t have much choice but to bet it.
The earliest moneyline openers put the Mets in the high -160s, and no one seems to want any part of them. Not only is their record worse than the Orioles, but they’re just hours removed from an 11-2 loss to this same team.
So, we end up with a pretty unpopular favorite — only 33% of bettors are taking the Mets — which is kind of my sweet spot, and especially so when the line continues to grow.
The Mets are up to -180 now across most of the market, and historically speaking, that sort of movement has led to some nice profit. In our database (since 2005), teams that have opened favored higher than -130, and saw the line move at least 10 cents in their direction on no more than 45% of bets, have gone 131-42, winning 35.3 units for a 20.1% return on investment.
And on the run line, the return has been even greater. The 91-69-12 record has profited 43.8 units for a 25.5% ROI.
I’ll be taking a piece of both bets tonight, but as for my favorite, I have to side with the historically higher return.
BJ Cunningham: Dodgers Over 5.5 (-114) vs. Diamondbacks
Taylor Clarke is a below-average righty who has been going back and forth between the bullpen and starting rotation. He’s mainly been pitching out of the bullpen this year and has been a tad fortunate so far. Clarke has a 2.96 ERA but a 4.41 xFIP, meaning he’s due for some negative regression.
Clarke primarily operated as a starting pitcher last season, but he wasn’t very effective in his 15 starts, posting a 5.56 xFIP along with a 2.44 HR/9 rate.
The Diamondbacks bullpen has struggled mightily this season, recording a 5.16 ERA. Arizona’s relievers have combined for a 5.07 xFIP, which ranks in the bottom 10 in the entire league. And that’s not to mention the Diamondbacks dealt Archie Bradley and Andrew Chafin — their best relievers — at the trade deadline, so the Dodgers should feast on their depleted bullpen.
The Dodgers lineup has been on fire over the past two weeks, hitting 20 home runs, which has led to a .351 wOBA and 123 wRC+. Los Angeles has done most of its damage against right-handed pitching, with a .359 wOBA and 128 wRC+, which is the best mark in Major League Baseball. Mookie Betts and Corey Seager, specifically, have been crushing right-handed pitching, each boasting wOBAs over .465.
The Dodgers have also been really successful against fastballs this season, with 34.6 weighted fastball runs. So they’ll have a great matchup against Clarke, who throws his fastball more than 43.9% of the time.
I have the Dodgers projected for 6.61 runs on Wednesday, so I think there is value in backing their team total over 5.5 runs at -114.