Happy Friday to one and all! There’s just one game in the NBA Playoffs today, so we’re able to turn our attention to MLB this evening.
Below are our picks and best bets for tonight’s baseball action. As always, special tip of the cap to our partners at Ballpark Pal and PointsBet for helping to make all of this possible – and profitable!
MLB Picks - Fri, 4/29/22
1. Rich Hill to record a win: NO (-300) – 2 units
There’s rarely value in backing juiced-up lines like this. But there’s ALWAYS value in taking free money.
Rich Hill has:
- Not pitched more than 4.2 innings in any of his 3 starts this season
- Has thrown 70, 80 and 62 pitches, respectively, in these 3 starts
- Averaged only 5.1 IPs per start across 31 starts in 2021
- Recorded a win in only 7 of 31 starts (22.6%) of his starts last year
- Has been listed as a likely “Opener” tonight, with Tanner Houck piggy-backing off of him
What am I missing? Why is this still on the board? I’m going to stop typing now (and even publish this article before it’s finished) so you can go and lock this in.
1. 7-inning total over 6.5 (-135) – 1 unit
2. Chas McCormick over 1.5 total bases (+130) – 0.5 units
3. Alex Bregman over 1.5 total bases (+110) – 0.5 units
Yusei Kikuchi(3.75 ERA) has scuffled out of the gates, going winless in 3 starts and posting bloated periphs (6.23 FIP, 1.75 WHIP) that suggest things might get worse before they get better. He faced these same Astros in his last start, posting an abhorrent line of 3.2 IPs, 3 H, 4, 2 ER, 5 BB in an 8-7 defeat at Minute Maid Park.
Jose Urquidy (5.52 ERA) has been even worse. He’s not missing bats (4.30 K/9, 7.0% SwStr%) and not keeping the ball in the park (1.84 HR/9).
McCormick will be leading off and has a career .352 wOBA against LHPs. In the aforementioned matchup with Kikuchi on Monday, he went 2-5 with 1 RBI and hit a 2B off Kikuchi himself. Bregman fared even better in that game (2-3, 1 RBI, 2 BB) and has a sterling .353/.522/.706 slash line with 6 BBs and only 1 K in 17 career ABs against Kikuchi. Yeah. I’d say he sees him well.
These are good lineups facing struggling flyball pitchers in a hitter’s park. I’m steering clear of the hook on the 8.5 total, but otherwise not overthinking the props above.
1. NYY -1.5 (-130) – 1.5 units
Speaking of pitchers off to nightmare starts, we’ve saved the best for last. Kris Bubic lost whatever momentum he built last September (26 IPs, 2.08 ERA, 21 Ks, 9 BBs) and is now losing some of his long-term luster, too. Through 3 starts this season, he has posted a 14.14 ERA (7.25 FIP, 7.18 SIERA) and 3.00 WHIP in 7.0 IPs. Hitters just aren’t being fooled by anything he throws (20.4% O-swing%, 36.8% Swing%) and aren’t missing when they do (5.5% SwStr%). Behind Bubic is the 2nd-worst bullpen in baseball (4.28 ERA, 1.38 WHIP) so there will be little chance of a KC turnaround if he’s chased early.
The Yankees lineup leads the AL with a .203 ISO against LHPs and have the 4th-highest wOBA at .338. Whether they murder or simply mash tonight, Nestor Cortes (1.15 ERA, 0.64 WHIP, 1.42 xFIP) should keep the Royals in check. The KC offense currently is one of the worst in baseball by every meaningful measurement.
Expect The Evil Empire to Strike Back.
– ATL (-130) – 1 unit
– CIN (+100) – 0.5 units
– LAD -1.5 (-120) – 1 unit