We finished August on a high note, hitting on 8 of our 10 picks yesterday, and will look to carry our hot streak into September. We start the month with a 13-game slate that isn’t especially interesting, but does have a few contests worth targeting. We’ll break down each of these below.
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Let’s get into tonight’s picks! All lines provided by PointsBet.
Reds -1.5 (+120)
Sonny Gray has been one of the best pitchers in baseball this season and he projects to be one of the top starters tonight, too. The former first-round pick is opposed by junk-balling southpaw Kwang Hyun Kim, who has been wholly hittable across his 16.2 major-league innings pitched to date.
This is as simple as my eyes and Excel spreadsheets aligning: St. Louis won’t score many runs, and Cincinnati will score a handful. The Reds should cover the run line.
Blue Jays under 3.5 (-105)
Marlins starter Elieser Hernandez is one of the most extreme fly-ball pitchers in the game (32.2% GB%) and plays in one of the most homer-suffocating home stadiums in baseball. He doesn’t walk batters (1.52 BB/9) but does strike them out in bunches (12.17 K/9). He has struggled against LHBs his first two seasons in the majors, but appears to have made adjustments in 2020, limiting lefties to a .326 wOBA and 3.36 xFIP to date. I (and my projections) think the Blue Jays have a tough time scoring tonight, and I think their pu pu platter of relievers (the team’s treating this as a bullpen game) will give up their fair share to the upstart Marlins. I might regret not having the extra half-run on the team total, but I like the Marlins to win while limiting Toronto to 3 runs or less.
Phillies -1.5 (+130)
Nationals-Phillies 3-inning total under 3 (-160)
My projections like Patrick Corbin, but they love Aaron Nola. The defending champs are beat up and have lost three straight. I don’t see them winning tonight and I certainly don’t see them scoring much off Aaron Nola. The line on the three-inning total currently on offer is a bit weird, but I have enough confidence it’ll hit to recommend it. Back Nola and the Phightin’ Phils.
Cubs -1.5 (+110)
I don’t believe in Jon Lester. I *really* don’t believe in Chad Kuhl, though, and think tonight is as good of a night as any for his sterling 2.32 ERA to regress towards his underlying peripherals of a 5.45 FIP and a 5.05 SIERA. PNC Park squashes the output of even the most ferocious offenses, but the Cubs will score enough and the punchless Pirates will not. Tak the visitors to cover the run line.
Brewers -1.5 (-105)
Nobody in baseball is more due for positive regression than Milwaukee starter Josh Lindblom. He has an inflated 6.31 ERA, despite striking out more than 30% of the batters he faces. While has walked a few too many batters (4.2 BB/9) and served up a few too many dingers (1.79 HR/9) his .356 BABIP and strikeout upside suggests better days are ahead. My models agree and think he tames the Tigers tonight, to the tune of the home team tallying more than 2 over the visitors from Detroit.
Astros -1.5 (-140)
One of the top projected starters on tonight’s slate (Framber Valdez) not only gets to take on one of the worst (Luis Garcia opening, with Jordan Lyles in long relief), but also faces a Rangers lineup that has been gutted since Opening Day. The Astros lineup is slowly getting healthy again and should hit on all cylinders tonight – trash can or not. Lock them in to cover.