MLB daily notes: Betting preview for Thursday's games

By Derek Carty  (VSiN.com) 

USATSI_16211712

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 RANKINGS

Today's Best Starting Pitchers

1. MIL - Brandon Woodruff (No. 3 out of 334)

2. COL - German Marquez (No. 21)

3. CWS - Lance Lynn (No. 23)

Today's Worst Starting Pitchers

1. CIN - Vladimir Gutierrez (No. 301 out of 334)

2. TEX - Mike Foltynewicz (No. 296)

3. STL - Wade LeBlanc (No. 256)

Today's Most Pitcher-Friendly Umpires

1. DET at BAL - Adam Hamari (No. 6 out of 111)

2. TB at BOS - Hunter Wendelstedt (No. 36)

3. TEX at SEA - Mark Ripperger (No. 37)

Today's Most Hitter-Friendly Umpires

1. LAD at PHI - Alfonso Marquez (No. 1 out of 111)

2. OAK at CLE - Stu Scheurwater (No. 10)

3. TOR at LAA - Junior Valentine (No. 13)

Today's Hottest Games

1. DET at BAL (96 degrees)

2. WSH at NYM (92 degrees)

3. TB at BOS (92 degrees)

Today's Coldest Games

1. COL at SF (62 degrees)

2. SD at ARI (78 degrees)

3. TOR at LAA (78 degrees)

THE BAT's Highest Projected Team Totals

·  Tampa Bay Rays

Projected: 6.15 runs | Vegas O/U: 5.5 O + 110

·  Atlanta Braves

Projected: 5.76 runs | Vegas O/U: 5.5 O + 105

·  Oakland Athletics

Projected: 5.71 runs | Vegas O/U: 5.5 O + 100

THE BAT's Lowest Projected Team Totals

·  Washington Nationals

Projected: 2.55 runs

·  New York Mets

Projected: 3.59 runs

·  Chicago Cubs

Projected: 3.62 runs | Vegas O/U: 3.5 O + 115

THE BAT's Highest Projected Game Totals

·  Rays at Red Sox

Projected: 11.73 runs | Vegas O/U: 11.0 O + 100

·  Reds at Braves

Projected: 11.00 runs | Vegas O/U: 10.0 O -115

·  Athletics at Indians

Projected: 10.34 runs | Vegas O/U: 9.5 O + 100

THE BAT's Lowest Projected Game Totals

·  Nationals at Mets

Projected: 6.27 runs | Vegas O/U: 7.0 O -105

·  Rockies at Giants

Projected: 7.72 runs | Vegas O/U: 7.5 O -110

·  Cardinals at Pirates

Projected: 8.46 runs | Vegas O/U: 9.0 O + 100

GAMES OF THE DAY

Baltimore Orioles (38-74) vs. Detroit Tigers (56-60)

O/U: 10.5 | BAL -145 | DET + 125

John Means (THE BAT's No. 67 SP) vs. Matt Manning (THE BAT's No. 238 SP)

Adam Hamari (Extreme Pitchers Umpire, No. 6 in MLB)

Oriole Park at Camden Yards (No. 4 Runs | No. 7 HR | No. 24 K)

96 degrees (No. 1 hottest today)

8 mph out to CF (No. 6 weakest winds today)

DATA NUGGETS

·  John Means (92.2 mph) has lost 1.2 mph off his fastball so far in 2021

·  John Means may be especially susceptible to the long-ball today pitching in the No. 2 best home run park in baseball (Oriole Park at Camden Yards) given his fly ball tendencies (43% FB% since 2019)

·  Fly ball pitchers tend to perform better against Fly ball hitters, and John Means (43% FB% since 2019) is projected to face three of them today

·  John Means has been one of the luckier pitchers in baseball this year. His 2.79 ERA is 1.62 points below his 4.41 FIP

·  The Orioles have four players (Pedro Severino, Maikel Franco, Trey Mancini, Anthony Santander) with a Max Exit Velocity in the 75th percentile or higher this season, No. 5 (tie) most in MLB

·  THE BAT X views the Tigers as the No. 4 most overperforming offense of 2021 and expects negative regression going forward

·  The Tigers offense knows how to optimize their launch angles for home runs; they have the No. 3 (tie) most players in MLB with a HR Zone Launch Angle in the 75th percentile or better this year (Niko Goodrum, Akil Baddoo, Robbie Grossman)

BETTING INSIGHTS

·  The Game Total has moved toward the UNDER after the Total opened at 11.0 Runs and is now 10.5 Runs

·  The Moneyline has lopsided action today with 75% of the cash and 58% of the bet tickets on the Orioles

·  The most profitable market for the Detroit Tigers has been their Moneyline which is 56-60 generating + 13.30 Units (11% ROI)

·  The Baltimore Orioles Game Total Over has been their most profitable market this season and is 58-50 resulting in + 2.80 Units (2% ROI)

·  John Means' Strikeouts Prop is priced at Over/Under 5.5 Strikeouts (-105/-125) is the most popular prop for the game

Arizona Diamondbacks (35-80) vs. San Diego Padres (66-50)

O/U: 9.0 | ARI + 195 | SD -235

Taylor Widener (THE BAT's No. 208 SP) vs. Yu Darvish (THE BAT's No. 26 SP)

Chase Field (No. 11 Runs | No. 25 HR | No. 26 K)

78 degrees (No. 2 coldest today)

Roof Closed (No. 1 weakest winds today)

DATA NUGGETS

·  Taylor Widener's fly ball nature (43% FB% since 2019) should play well in Chase Field (No. 2 best homer-suppressing park in MLB) today

·  Given that Fly ball pitchers are least effective against Ground ball hitters, Taylor Widener (43% FB% since 2019) will be at a disadvantage today with four Ground ball hitters in the opposition's projected lineup

·  So far in 2021, Taylor Widener has been one of baseball's luckier starting pitchers, boasting a 4.89 ERA despite a 5.83 FIP

·  THE BAT X projects the D-Backs (No. 6 most underperforming offense in MLB) as a much better squad than they've performed like (0.298 wOBA) thus far in 2021

·  The Padres are the No. 3 least strikeout prone offense today, projecting for an underlying K% of 22.7% according to THE BAT X

·  The Padres have five players (Eric Hosmer, Manny Machado, Victor Caratini, Ha-seong Kim, Tommy Pham) with a Max Exit Velocity in the 75th percentile or higher this season, No. 1 (tie) most in MLB

BETTING INSIGHTS

·  There is lopsided action on the Moneyline as 68% of the bet tickets and 63% of the cash is on the Padres

·  This season the Padres Game Total Over has been their most profitable market and is 63-50 resulting in + 8.70 Units (7% ROI)

·  The most profitable market for the Arizona Diamondbacks has been their Game Total Over which is 62-50 generating + 7.40 Units (6% ROI)

·  Manny Machado's Home Runs Prop is the most popular prop for the game and is priced at Over/Under 0.5 Home Runs (+ 260/-430)

San Francisco Giants (73-41) vs. Colorado Rockies (51-63)

O/U: 7.5 | SF -190 | COL + 165

Logan Webb (THE BAT's No. 45 SP) vs. German Marquez (THE BAT's No. 21 SP)

Oracle Park (No. 16 Runs | No. 27 HR | No. 11 K)

62 degrees (No. 1 coldest today)

10 mph out to CF (No. 4 strongest winds today)

DATA NUGGETS

·  Logan Webb is throwing a fastball 20% less often this season (13% usage) than he did last season (33% usage)

·  Logan Webb has been throwing a sinker (21% increase) far more often in 2021 (34% usage) than he did in 2020 (13% usage)

·  Logan Webb has been throwing a slider (10% increase) far more often in 2021 (26% usage) than he did in 2020 (16% usage)

·  Given that Ground ball pitchers are least effective against Fly ball hitters, Logan Webb (54% GB% since 2019) will be at a disadvantage today with two Fly ball hitters in the opposition's projected lineup

·  While THE BAT projects Logan Webb's ERA going forward to be 3.71, his actual has been 3.19 ERA, indicating some regression may be in order

·  This season, German Marquez's fastball (94.3 mph) has been 1.0 mph slower than it was in 2020

·  German Marquez's slider usage (28% in 2021, 17% in 2020) has increased 11% this season

·  Ground ball pitchers tend to perform worse against Fly ball hitters, and German Marquez (51% GB% since 2019) is projected to face three of them today

·  According to THE BAT X, the Giants and their 0.327 wOBA have been the No. 3 luckiest offense in 2021

·  San Francisco boasts three active bats with a 75th percentile or higher Home Run Zone Launch Angle% this season, No. 3 (tie) most in MLB (Brandon Crawford, Brandon Belt, Wilmer Flores)

·  The Rockies are the No. 2 most strikeout prone offense today, projecting for an underlying K% of 27.6% according to THE BAT X

·  The projected lineup for the Rockies holds three extremely strikeout-prone bats today: Sam Hilliard, Dom Nunez, German Marquez. THE BAT projects all for a Sam Hilliard, Dom Nunez, German Marquez+ underlying K%

·  The Rockies offense is quite fast; they have the No. 7 (tie) most hitters in baseball with a Sprint Speed in the 75th percentile or better this year (Yonathan Daza, Trevor Story, Garrett Hampson)

BETTING INSIGHTS

·  The Giants Moneyline opened at -160, but is now -190 and is showing the most line movement on the slate today

·  The Giants Moneyline has 98% of the cash and 58% of the bet tickets resulting in a very lopsided handle

·  The most profitable market for the San Francisco Giants has been their Run Line which is 72-42 generating + 35.20 Units (25% ROI)

·  The most profitable market for the Colorado Rockies has been their Game Total Under which is 61-51 generating + 4.05 Units (3% ROI)

·  German Marquez's Strikeouts Prop is priced at Over/Under 5.5 Strikeouts (-145/+ 110) is the most popular prop for the game

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