It’s Thursday, and that not only means the weekend is around the corner, it means we’ve got plenty of baseball on the docket. I’ve taken a look at the entire card and I think I’ve picked out three winners.
Here are my best MLB bets to consider on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Kansas City Royals vs. Cleveland Indians
Royals ML (+112)
It’s pretty crazy to think about, but there was a time in the first month of the season where the Indians were raking lefties. Fast forward to Thursday and the Indians are dead last in wRC+ to left-handers with a mark of 83, and come in struggling to hit the ball.
I don’t think Danny Duffy is particularly good, but even if he sees the regression we all think he will judging by his peripherals, he’d still be an average pitcher. An average lefty is going to look like an above-average lefty against this Cleveland team, and that’s exactly the story with Duffy, who’s thrown 11 2⁄3 innings against the Indians and allowed just three runs on 10 hits with 11 strikeouts.
The Royals come in with some better form after a long losing streak, having had a few nice nights at the dish over the past week. With Zach Plesac coming in off a couple stinkers, I certainly don’t hate this spot for KC, who shouldn’t need much to get past a team which can’t hit lefties.
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Pittsburgh Pirates at New York Mets
Under 7.5 (-108)
Editor’s Note: Tonight’s game between the Pirates and the Mets has been postponed due to inclement weather.
Taijuan Walker has been a revelation for the Mets this season, after years of failing to live up to his great potential. His strikeout rate has climbed back up to 25.9%, and he’s proved capable of maintaining an ERA in the twos after a hot start to the season, checking in at 2.44. He draws a Pirates team that’s risen to around average numbers in July, but which also has had plenty of awful nights mixed in with some good ones. Walker’s swing-and-miss stuff should help him against a contact-oriented lineup. On the other hand, we have a Mets team that is struggling at the plate. Their .702 OPS in July ranks 23rd, and while Jeff McNeil has begun to feel it a bit, Francisco Lindor and Michael Conforto remain ineffective at the plate. They’re running into JT Brubaker on Thursday, a pitcher who I feel is very good and one who doesn’t walk many and at the same time is able to generate plenty of swings and misses. New York’s strikeout rate this month is an alarming 27%, and punchouts have been a huge issue for this team. I think we see a low-scoring affair with both pitchers finding a groove in good matchups.
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Cincinnati Reds at Milwaukee Brewers
Brewers ML (-117)
The Brewers may be the hottest team in baseball right now, and aside from Christian Yelich, everyone is hitting. Luis Urías is beginning to see the ball very well, and even Jace Peterson is ripping the cover off the ball, accenting a brilliant run with a bomb to dead center off Jacob deGrom on Wednesday.
Only four teams have a better OPS than the Brewers over the last two weeks, and their offense should get hot enough here to get a win. Adrian Houser has had a very erratic season, but his last start against the Reds was a great one, and it’s not as if this lineup has been super-imposing over the last couple of months.
Tyler Mahle has hit a backslide after a solid first month and a half, and should be no match for a Brewers team in great form. Mahle’s four walks in his last outing are alarming, considering the hard contact numbers are up. I like the Brewers to out-slug the Reds.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jetsfan196) 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.