College Baseball Odds, Picks & Predictions: Best Bets for Wednesday, May 11
Zachary BonDurant/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Tyresse Turner (10) of the USC Trojans.
With just 19 days until the NCAA Division-I men’s baseball tournament field of 64 is announced, the pressure of each game is only ratcheting up. Any midweek slip-ups could prove fatal for teams’ postseason hopes.
That being said, we’re going to highlight a top-five team looking to cement their success with yet another top 50 RPI win. Then we’ll cap off the night with everyone’s favorite Pac-12 underdog, who is once again not being given enough respect.
Liberty vs. Virginia Tech
7 p.m. ET · ACC Network
The No. 5-ranked Virginia Tech Hokies play host to another 30-win team in the Liberty Flames, and these two teams should combine to light up the scoreboard.
Jordan Gerber will be on the bump for the Hokies, and he has been lit up in 16 innings of work this season: Gerber enters with a 7.02 ERA and .360 BAA.
Much of the contact he’s surrendered has been hard: 12 of his 27 surrendered hits have gone for extra bases. Gerber may not have a long leash in this one, but the Flames are capable of doing damage in a hurry.
Dereck Orndorff and Brady Gulakowski lead a Flames lineup that has averaged more than 6.5 runs per game. The duo of Orndorff and Gulakowski have combined for 28 homers this season, and they could add a few more on Wednesday. Gerber is tied for second on the Hokies in homeruns allowed.
However, Liberty’s starter, Trey Gibson, has also given up more than his fair share of extra-base hits. Gibson enters this start with a 6.21 ERA and has given up a staff-high 12 doubles during 42 innings of work.
I expect Virginia Tech’s potent lineup to feast against Gibson, reinforcing the Hokies’ reputation as one of the best offenses in the country. The Hokies are hitting .315 as a team and have averaged nearly nine runs per game this season. If they can hit their average, this game should fly over the total.
Pick: Over 12
USC vs. Long Beach State
9 p.m. ET · ESPN+
The Trojans came through for us last Friday when they pulled off the upset against Arizona. Now they’re being undervalued on the road once again against the Dirtbags.
Long Beach State may have a handful of solid arms on its staff, but Kaden Moeller has not been one of them. Moeller has only thrown 8.2 innings and has been hit hard by the only two capable lineups that he’s faced: UCLA and San Diego State.
This USC lineup is sneaky good.
The Trojans enter this matchup slashing .277/.356/.452 and averaging about six runs per game. If they can grab an early lead off Moeller, they should be in good shape.
Issac Esqueda, the Trojans’ midweek starter, will once again get the call on Wednesday. While his 6.98 ERA may be startling, it is actually inflated from two bad outings against Oregon State and Utah.
The Dirtbags lineup is nowhere near as potent as some of the other lineups that Esqueda has faced. They’re only hitting .261 and slugging .375 on the season.
Back the Trojans to pull off yet another upset on the road.
Pick: USC -110
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