MLB Betting: Friday Best Bets

MLB Betting: Friday Best Bets

This article is part of our MLB Betting series.

Previous day: 0-1, -1 RWBucks (one void)

Season: 30-45, -20.41 RWBucks

How the sausage is usually made: I write the introduction relatively early in the day, then do the work on the games themselves, then glue them together for publication.

How the sausage was made today: I did the work on the games, and flipped the usual order of them, working from the late games forward. Then I looked up at 3 p.m. and had no introduction. Look, your shoe's untied!

[runs away]

7 p.m. Angels (Griffin Canning)/Red Sox (Nick Pivetta) over 9.5 (-117)

By Defensive Efficiency, these are the two worst defensive teams in baseball; the Sox have the excuse of Fenway Park, where the Green Monster turns a lot of routine flyouts into hits. The Angels are just bad defensively, and have allowed the most runs per game in baseball because of it. Nick Pivetta leads the AL in walks allowed, and the Red Sox won't have their best middle reliever in Garrett Whitlock after the rookie threw 52 pitches last night. 2 RWBucks, only because I'm too chicken to make it four.

7 p.m. Cubs (Jake Arrieta) -130 over Tigers (Tarik Skubal)

It's just not happening for Tarik Skubal, who has a 5.67 ERA that doesn't actually describe how poorly he has pitched. He has a 7.88 FIP, has allowed ten homers in 27 innings, and posted some of the worst skill numbers in baseball. There aren't many spots in which I'll be looking to bet on Jake Arrieta, but "against the worst team in baseball using one of the worst starters in baseball at -130" seems like a credible exception. 1.5 RWBucks.

8 p.m. Twins (Matt Shoemaker) -109 over Athletics (Frankie Montas)

This is a pick'em game at DraftKings. (Why, yes, I do miss a certain Website and its -105 lines.) I figure I have a week, maybe two, to continue betting my evaluation of the Twins before I have to concede I'm wrong. If I'm right, there's going to be a lot of value on a top-four AL team currently posting the worst record in baseball. If I'm wrong, I'll tell everyone I was kissing up to Pete Schoenke, Twins homer. The Twins' pen is a disaster; it has an above-average strikeout rate and xFIP, but has been getting crushed on contact, with the worst barrel rate, highest exit velo allowed, and highest hard-hit rate of any pen in baseball. It's better than it's shown, and this is still a strong offensive team, sixth in MLB in wOBA. 1.5 RWBucks.

8:40 p.m. Reds (Wade Miley)/Rockies (German Marquez) over 10.5 (-118)

I know I'm setting myself up here, having eaten the bad loss at Coors Field on Tuesday and then missed the 13-8 game yesterday. No-hitter notwithstanding, Miley has been living on weak contact, which is a good way to have an early night in Denver. These are two of the worst bullpens in baseball, so be patient if it starts a bit slow. 1.5 RWBucks.

10 p.m. Mariners (Chris Flexen) +103 over Indians (Aaron Civale)

This is an Aaron Civale fade, even against a poor-hitting Mariners team. Civale has a very low strikeout rate, 18%, and has been getting by inducing somewhat soft contact. Even at that, he's getting results better than the contact he's allowed to date. The Indians will probably be down Emmanuel Clase tonight after he walked three men on his second night of work and had to be rescued. 1 RWBuck.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joe Sheehan
Joe Sheehan has been a contributing writer to RotoWire since its inception and can frequently be heard as a guest on RotoWire Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM Radio. A founding member of Baseball Prospectus, Sheehan writes the Joe Sheehan Baseball Newsletter, an e-mail newsletter about all things baseball, at JoeSheehan.com.
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