MLB daily notes: Betting preview for Saturday's games

By Derek Carty  (VSiN.com) 

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This column will bring you the quick-hitting stats, tidbits and factors you need to know to evaluate today's landscape of MLB games. No narratives, no fluff, no editorializing; just the cold, hard data to help you plan out your bets. Projections and Bets Stats courtesy of THE BAT X and EV Analytics.

Today's Best Starting Pitchers

1. SD - Joe Musgrove (No. 17 out of 345)

2. HOU - Framber Valdez (No. 21)

3. LAD - Julio Urias (No. 25)

Today's Worst Starting Pitchers

1. MIN - Andrew Albers (No. 338 out of 345)

2. WSH - Josh Rogers (No. 337)

3. BAL - Chris Ellis (No. 326)

Today's Most Pitcher-Friendly Umpires

1. BAL at NYY - Mike Estabrook (No. 1 out of 111)

2. OAK at TOR - Dan Merzel (No. 16)

3. PIT at CHC - Cory Blaser (No. 24)

Today's Most Hitter-Friendly Umpires

1. PHI at MIA - Alan Porter (No. 17 out of 111)

2. CLE at BOS - Larry Vanover (No. 30)

3. TEX at LAA - Lance Barksdale (No. 39)

Today's Hottest Games

1. TEX at LAA (87 degrees)

2. ATL at COL (84 degrees)

3. SEA at ARI (78 degrees)

Today's Coldest Games

1. LAD at SF (64 degrees)

2. STL at MIL (72 degrees)

3. NYM at WSH (72 degrees)

THE BAT's Highest Projected Team Totals

·  Atlanta Braves

Projected: 6.10 runs | Vegas O/U: 5.5 O -105

·  Boston Red Sox

Projected: 5.84 runs | Vegas O/U: 5.5 O + 105

·  New York Yankees

Projected: 5.77 runs | Vegas O/U: 5.5 O -130

THE BAT's Lowest Projected Team Totals

·  Washington Nationals

Projected: 2.81 runs

·  Miami Marlins

Projected: 3.13 runs | Vegas O/U: 3.5 O + 105

·  Baltimore Orioles

Projected: 3.68 runs | Vegas O/U: 3.5 O + 115

THE BAT's Highest Projected Game Totals

·  Braves at Rockies

Projected: 11.41 runs | Vegas O/U: 11.0 O -105

·  Indians at Red Sox

Projected: 10.53 runs | Vegas O/U: 9.5 O -115

·  Twins at Rays

Projected: 10.28 runs | Vegas O/U: 8.5 O -120

THE BAT's Lowest Projected Game Totals

·  Mets at Nationals

Projected: 6.53 runs

·  Phillies at Marlins

Projected: 7.02 runs | Vegas O/U: 7.5 O + 100

·  Astros at Padres

Projected: 7.67 runs | Vegas O/U: 7.5 O -110

GAMES OF THE DAY

Washington Nationals (55-78) vs. New York Mets (67-67)

O/U: | WSH + 140 | NYM -160

Erick Fedde (THE BAT's No. 150 SP) vs. Marcus Stroman (THE BAT's No. 46 SP)

Nationals Park (No. 11 Runs | No. 12 HR | No. 14 K)

72 degrees (No. 3 coldest today)

3 mph out to LF (No. 5 weakest winds today)

DATA NUGGETS

·  Erick Fedde is throwing a fastball 21% less often this season (1% usage) than he did last season (22% usage)

·  Erick Fedde is throwing a sinker 12% more often this season (45% usage) than he did last season (33% usage)

·  Ground ball pitchers tend to perform better against Ground ball hitters, and Erick Fedde (52% GB% since 2019) is projected to face two of them today

·  Marcus Stroman (53% GB% since 2019) projects to face five Ground ball hitters today, which should play to his advantage since Ground ball pitchers perform best against Ground ball hitters

·  Marcus Stroman's 2.85 ERA is 0.60 points better than his 3.44 FIP, making him one of the luckier pitchers in MLB this season

·  THE BAT X views the Nationals as the No. 2 most overperforming offense of 2021 and expects negative regression going forward

BETTING INSIGHTS

·  There is two-way action on the Game Total as 82% of the bet tickets are on the UNDER, but 14% of the cash is on the OVER

·  The Mets Moneyline has 83% of the bet tickets and 94% of the cash resulting in a very lopsided handle

Kansas City Royals (60-74) vs. Chicago White Sox (78-57)

O/U: 9.0 | KC + 140 | CWS -160

Daniel Lynch (THE BAT's No. 187 SP) vs. Reynaldo Lopez (THE BAT's No. 136 SP)

Kauffman Stadium (No. 18 Runs | No. 30 HR | No. 29 K)

76 degrees (No. 6 hottest today)

6 mph in from LF (No. 7 strongest winds today)

DATA NUGGETS

·  Daniel Lynch's large platoon split makes him especially ineffective against opposite-handed hitters, and he's projected to face nine of them today

·  Reynaldo Lopez may be on a pitch count today, with THE BAT projecting a max of roughly 80 pitches

·  Thus far in 2021, Reynaldo Lopez's fastball (94.6 mph) has been nearly a full mph faster than it was last season

·  Reynaldo Lopez is throwing a changeup 17% less often this season (3% usage) than he did last season (20% usage)

·  Reynaldo Lopez and his 1.54 ERA have been overperforming THE BAT's projected talent level of 4.42 thus far in 2021

·  The Royals have been underperforming thus far in 2021, with THE BAT X viewing them as the No. 3 unluckiest offense and projecting an increase on their 0.299 wOBA going forward

BETTING INSIGHTS

·  The UNDER has 98% of the cash and 64% of the bet tickets resulting in a lopsided handle for the Game Total

·  The White Sox Moneyline has 88% of the bet tickets and 66% of the cash resulting in a very lopsided handle

·  The most popular prop for the game is Reynaldo Lopez's Strikeouts Prop which is currently priced at Over/Under 4.5 Strikeouts (+ 125/-160)

Milwaukee Brewers (82-54) vs. St. Louis Cardinals (69-64)

O/U: 8.5 | MIL -130 | STL + 110

Adrian Houser (THE BAT's No. 130 SP) vs. Kwang-hyun Kim (THE BAT's No. 183 SP)

American Family Field (No. 17 Runs | No. 9 HR | No. 6 K)

72 degrees (No. 2 coldest today)

9 mph out to RF (No. 2 strongest winds today)

DATA NUGGETS

·  American Family Field is baseball's No. 10 best park for home runs, but Adrian Houser's ground ball-heavy skillset (59% GB% since 2019) should help insulate him against the long-ball

·  Adrian Houser (59% GB% since 2019) projects to face two Fly ball hitters today, which could play to his disadvantage since Ground ball pitchers perform worst against Fly ball hitters

·  Adrian Houser has been one of the luckier pitchers in baseball this year. His 3.69 ERA is 0.89 points below his 4.57 FIP

·  Kwang Hyun Kim may be on a pitch count today, with THE BAT projecting a max of roughly 79 pitches

·  Kwang Hyun Kim (88.4 mph) has lost nearly a full mph off his fastball so far in 2021

·  Kwang Hyun Kim is projected to face seven opposite-handed hitters today, which makes this matchup more difficult given his huge platoon split

·  The Milwaukee Brewers' 26.0 projected K% (via THE BAT) is the No. 5 most on today's slate of games

·  According to THE BAT X, the Cardinals and their 0.307 wOBA have been the No. 3 luckiest offense in 2021

BETTING INSIGHTS

·  There is reverse line movement as only 16% of the cash is on the St. Louis Cardinals, but their Moneyline has dropped from + 120 to + 110

·  There is lopsided action on the Moneyline as 73% of the bet tickets and 84% of the cash is on the Brewers

·  The most popular prop for the game is Paul Goldschmidt's Home Runs Prop which is currently priced at Over/Under 0.5 Home Runs (+ 335/-635)

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