Freedman’s Favorite MLB Strikeout Prop (Friday May 31): Bet on Zack Wheeler

Freedman’s Favorite MLB Strikeout Prop (Friday May 31): Bet on Zack Wheeler article feature image
Credit:

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler

  • Matthew Freedman continues his series featuring at least one of his favorite prop bets for each day of 2019.
  • On Friday, he highlights the MLB strikeout prop he likes most for the Mets-Diamondbacks game, featuring New York pitcher Zack Wheeler.

Each day, I publish 1-2 pieces on props I like. See my master list of 2019 prop bets for more information.

In this piece, I highlight my favorite MLB strikeout prop for the New York Mets-Arizona Diamondbacks game (9:40 p.m. ET).

For up-to-the-minute lines, check out our live betting odds page.

For more daily player props, follow me in The Action Network app.

2019 Year-to-Date Record

851-627-46, +135.33 Units

  • NFL: 21-13-0, +11.72 Units
  • NBA: 411-308-7, +48.39 Units
  • NHL: 138-114-11, +24.38 Units
  • MLB: 51-57-14, -11.69 Units
  • Golf: 9-13-2, -1.70 Units
  • NASCAR: 12-17-0, -4.42 Units
  • NCAAB: 125-70-12, +38.82 Units
  • NCAAF: 0-1-0, -1.00 Units
  • Exotic: 79-34-0, +28.50 Units
  • Horse Racing: 4-0-0, +2.19 Units

Mets Pitcher Zack Wheeler: 6.5 Strikeouts

  • Over 6.5: -105
  • Under 6.5: -123

In the FantasyLabs MLB Models, we have Wheeler projected for 8.2 strikeouts, and in the FantasyLabs Props Tool, we have the over graded with a bet quality of 10, so that’s where I’m going.

The projected lineup for the opposing Diamondbacks has a 28% strikeout rate — the third-highest mark on the slate — and this year Wheeler has a career-best 10.0 strikeouts per nine innings.

And his strikeout improvement is probably not a fluke. If we compare 2019 to 2017-18, Wheeler has added significant velocity to his three main pitches (in mph, per FanGraphs).

  • Fastball: 96.8 vs. 95.4
  • Slider: 91.8 vs. 89.8
  • Curveball: 81.3 vs. 79.0

On top of that, Wheeler is a pitch accumulator. In his 11 starts this year, not once has he thrown fewer than 90 pitches. In fact, he’s had more than 100 pitches in eight of them.

He’s gone six-plus innings in all of his starts but two.

Against a strikeout-prone team like the Diamondbacks, Wheeler should be able to hit the over if he can last six innings, and I like his chances to pitch that deep into the game.

I’d bet over 6.5 strikeouts down to -140.

The Pick: Over 6.5 (-105)

Matthew Freedman is the Editor-in-Chief of FantasyLabs. He has a dog and sometimes a British accent. In Cedar Rapids, Iowa, he’s known only as The Labyrinthian.