This article is part of our MLB Betting series.
Overall 2-1 67% +1RW buck
The Monday slate is not a very attractive one, but I tried to focus on games with strong starting pitchers at home to find some value. We also have some weather issues to take those games out of the mix.
Texas Rangers at Tampa Bay Rays
Start Time: 7:10 pm EDT
Whenever I see a huge favorite like Tyler Glasnow is against the Rangers (-265), I immediately look to the strikeout prop to get a piece of the pitcher but at a much more attractive price. Glasnow is a great play here as his K/9 in 2020 was over 14 and is not limited to either left-handed or right-handed hitters. This combined with the Rangers' total team strikeout rate of 28.8% (4th worst in baseball) and a 7.2% walk rate (also 4th worst) makes for a solid play. Another factor is the low run total which has already moved down from 8 to 7.5. Low-scoring games make for high strikeout outcomes.
Looking at Glasnow's box scores from 2020, he threw at least eight strikeouts in 8 out of 11 starts and did not need a ton of innings to do it. Several of those starts were only five to six innings, so no worries there.
The only hitter in the Rangers lineup with under a 25% K rate is Isiah Kiner-Falefa (14.3%).
BET – Tyler Glasnow over 8.5 strikeouts (-125) for 1 RW buck
NOTE – This line went from 8 to 8.5 overnight, but also the run total went from 8 to 7.5
Miami Marlins at Atlanta Braves
Start Time: 7:20 pm EDT
Alcantara has started off 2021 where he left off in 2020 with two strong performances against the Cardinals and Rays. He struck out 10 and 7 respectively in those games, so getting him at 5.5 today looks good. I tend to like the Marlins pitchers more at home because of the huge park effect, but on a strikeout prop this low I am fine with grabbing him on the road. The key for me is how many innings he will last, and with him facing Ynoa I like Alcantara to go at least six innings.
The Braves have struck out 27.1 of the time, which is the ninth-highest rate in baseball.
Another tip I will give is the edge you get on K props with a NL vs NL team as the pitcher or a weak pinch hitter take up three at-bats.
BET – Alcantara over 5.5 (-143) strikeouts for 1 RW buck
NOTE – This has gone up from -110 to -143 or higher
Detroit Tigers at Houston Astros
Start Time: 8:10 pm EDT
Another big home favorite with Greinke at -250 so we need to find the angle to get a piece of the Houston side. I look for early trends that hit at a high rate that offer favorable odds. We know the Astros offense has been firing on all cylinders so the team total is where I would look to. Initially I looked at the Astros team total over 4.5 runs at -140, but looked around and found first to score 5 runs at a much better price +102. There really is not much of a difference, especially when the Astros are such a heavy favorite.
The Astros have scored at least 5 runs in 8 out of 9 games this year and carry a .362 wOBA which is 3rd in baseball. On the opposite side is Casey Mize who has a tremendous pedigree, but will be in for a difficult task on the road and then leaving it up to a Tigers bullpen with a 7.08 ERA.
BET – Astros 1st to score 5 runs +102 for 1 RW buck
Other games I considered just so you can get my thought process
Cardinals/Nationals over – Was hoping to get word about some guys being back for the Nationals, but it has not happened as of yet. Also, the total did go from 8.5 to 9 putting a slight damper on it. The Cardinals team total over was attractive but with the game total getting bumped, I passed.
Freddy Peralta vs. the Cubs – I tend to avoid the 2nd start of a back-to-back outing.
Oakland and over team total – Line jumped to 9.5 and 10 in some spots. Just too rich for me to take a shot on a bad offense vs. an even worse pitcher in Madison Bumgarner.
Giants team total under – Even bad offenses like the Giants can put up runs against Wade Miley.