Baseball is back, and we have another full slate of games on Monday. There are 12 games to choose from, and the action gets underway at 2:10 p.m. ET.
Let’s break down some of my favorite wagers to target on DraftKings Sportsbook.
The Pick: Mets ML (+140)
Full disclosure – I’m a Mets fan. I like to think I’m pretty realistic about my team, but I get it if you want to think that I’m biased. However, I don’t think this team deserves to be a +140 underdog vs. the Phillies.
The Phillies will send Ranger Suarez to the mound, who was nothing short of fantastic last year. He pitched to a 1.12 ERA over 40 1/3 innings out of the bullpen and a 1.51 ERA as a member of the rotation. That said, some of his metrics suggest it will be tough for him to duplicate that success. He pitched to an unusually low .257 batting average on balls in play, and just 5.8% of his fly balls turned into home runs. Overall, his 3.38 FIP was significantly higher than his traditional ERA, and some of the more advanced projection systems project him to be closer to a 4.00 ERA pitcher this season.
That doesn’t make this as big of a pitching mismatch as it may seem on paper. Taijuan Walker had a disastrous second half in 2021, but he was outstanding before the All-Star break. He pitched to a 2.66 ERA over his first 94 2/3 innings, which was good enough to get him the first All-Star nod of his career. Both of these teams can do some damage offensively, but I’ll roll the dice with the Mets as moderate underdogs.
The Pick: Padres ML (+130)
Remember back to the beginning of 2021. The Giants were not expected to be serious contenders, while the Padres were one of the World Series favorites. That’s not how things played out, but it goes to show the talent disparity between these two squads.
The Padres are still without their best player in Fernando Tatis Jr., but they are arguably still the better squad. They’re off to a 3-1 start this season, and their lineup is loaded with talent. They have All-Star-caliber hitters in Manny Machado and Jake Cronenworth, and they should get a boost from top prospect C.J. Abrams.
The Padres will also turn to an interesting starting pitching option in Nick Martinez. He’s been out of the majors since 2017, pitching instead in Japan. He was outstanding in 2021, posting a 1.62 ERA across 23 starts. The Giants probably still have the edge with Alex Wood on the mound, but I’ll take my chances with what I believe is the superior squad.
EDIOTR’S NOTE: Monday’s Pirates-Cardinals game has been postponed due to inclement weather.
The Pick: Pirates ML (+170) The Pirates came through for us yesterday as big underdogs, and I’m going right back to the well. The Cardinals are clearly the better team, but I’m not sure they’re as good as the current betting line indicates. The Cardinals will turn to Dakota Hudson, who has barely pitched over the past few seasons. He logged just 8 2/3 innings in 2021 and 39 innings in 2020 following Tommy John surgery, making him a bit of a question mark. Meanwhile, the Pirates will hand the ball to Zach Thompson, who put together an extremely underrated campaign in 2021. He pitched to a 3.24 and 3.69 FIP, making him a nice addition to the Pirates’ staff. Targeting divisional underdogs in this price range has also historically been a solid investment. Road underdogs in particular have been strong options in this price range. Finally, the Pirates are getting a bit of sharp action in this spot, logging 55% of the dollars on just 29% of the bets. This line has already dipped a bit since opening, so locking it in now makes sense.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
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