After our second consecutive 1-2 week last Wednesday, my record for article plays stands at 8-6 for the season as we sit in mid-May. Not terrible, but I’d certainly like to be better. Well, good news! There’s a whole lot of baseball to bet this evening and I’ve got some takes.
Let’s try to get back in the green. Here are my favorite MLB bets on the DraftKings Sportsbook.
Team Total: White Sox OV 4.5 Runs (+112)
Despite losing the bats of Eloy Jimenez and Luis Robert, the White Sox have continued to absolutely punish every left-handed pitcher they come across. In fact, Chicago enters play on Wednesday leading the league with a .300 batting average and a 141 wRC+ within the split. So, why should J.A. Happ be any different? Yes, the veteran left-hander has managed to pitch to a surprisingly low 1.91 ERA through his first five starts of 2021, but the advanced metrics tell a very different story. Happ’s currently in possession of 5.39 xFIP, which is directly correlated to insanely low marks in both BABIP (.171) and HR/FB ratio (5.0%). It also doesn’t help matters that Happ is inducing fewer swings and misses than he ever has at any point in his career. Heck, his 6.8% swinging strike rate would be the lowest mark in all of baseball had the southpaw the innings to qualify. Happ’s due for some serious regression and the White Sox are the exact lineup to make that happen.
There’s a couple things that draw me towards the Phillies in this spot. First and foremost, the lopsided pitching matchup. Zach Wheeler has been incredible so far in 2021, pitching to an expected ERA of 3.00 through 47.2 innings of work. That includes his most recent three outings, in which he’s held opponents to a paltry .173 wOBA. I can’t say I have the same level of confidence in Jon Lester, who has survived his first two starts since coming off the IL, but has done so with decreased fastball velocity (88.7 mph) and an opponent zone contact rate of 90.0%. Those two things don’t tend to mix. On top of that, this is a Philadelphia lineup that should start having more success against LHPs. Though the overall numbers for this season are middling, the individual figures jump off the page. Rhys Hoskins owns a 187 wRC+ within the split. Andrew McCutchen is up at a 174 wRC+. While the likes of J.T. Realmuto, Jean Segura and Alec Bohm all own marks above a 139 wRC+. History has proven this team can mash left-handers and I expect they’ll put up some runs this evening.
Parlay: New York Yankees + Los Angeles Dodgers
The classic parlay of two massive favorites. It never fails. ...It fails all the time?! Well, I’m still going to suggest this one. What a time to be alive. Each team has an ace taking the mound this evening as Gerrit Cole and Julio Urias are the scheduled starters for the Yankees and the Dodgers, respectively. New York comes into it’s matchup with Tampa Bay red-hot, having gone 8-2 in its past 10 games and 6-1 in its last seven contest against an opponent with a record above .500. As for Los Angeles, it’ll have the pleasure of facing a Seattle squad that’s dropped seven of its past nine games on the road. The Mariners have also had their fair share of issues with left-handed pitching in 2021, as the team’s 29.5% strikeout rate within the split is the fourth-highest mark in baseball.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) and I may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
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