Happy Labor Day! Major League Baseball is celebrating the holiday with a full slate of games, including nine starting at 4:10 p.m. ET or later.
Diamondbacks ML (+200)
The Padres have a quick turnaround on Monday. They played on Sunday Night Baseball against the Dodgers — a game they lost 9-4 — and now they have to start a series with the Diamondbacks. That’s obviously a much more exploitable matchup, but the Diamondbacks will have a slight rest advantage.
The Diamondbacks will also be calling up one of their best pitching prospects to make his major league debut. Ryne Nelson is considered the No. 6 prospect in the Diamondbacks’ system, per FanGraphs, and he has excellent strikeout ability. He averaged at least 12.16 strikeouts per nine innings in 2019 and 2021, and he’s racked up 8.47 in Triple-A this season. His run prevention numbers aren’t good, but the Pacific Coast League is known for gaudy run totals. The Aces’ ballpark — where Nelson plays his home games — is the second-best offensive park in that league, so it’s hard to judge him too harshly on his ERA.
The Diamondbacks have received some early sharp activity in this matchup, so don’t be surprised if this number dips below +200.
Rays ML (-110)
The Rays dropped a one-run game vs. the Yankees on Sunday, but they’ve still been one of the hottest teams in baseball recently. They’ve won 11 of their past 14 games, which has given them a bit of breathing room in the AL Wild Card race. They’re also just five games behind the Yankees for the division crown, which seemed impossible just one month ago.
They’ll play host to the disappointing Red Sox on Monday. Boston will turn to Michael Wacha, who has been one of their best starting pitchers this season. He’s racked up a 2.56 ERA across 95 innings, but his advanced metrics suggest he’s been incredibly lucky. His 4.26 xERA is nearly two full runs higher than his actual mark, and opposing batters have limped to an unsustainable .232 batting average on balls in play. The Rays got to Wacha for four earned runs over six innings in their last meeting, and further regression should be expected.
The Rays have also been the best hitting team in baseball against right-handers over the past 14 days, ranking first in wRC+. It’s a great spot for them to pick up another win at a reasonable price tag.
Over 8.0 Runs (-110)
The Rangers will send one of the most underrated starters in baseball to the mound on Monday in Martin Perez. He’s pitched to a 2.89 ERA over 159 innings this season, which is the 14th-best mark among qualified starters. He’s also averaged a career-best 8.15 strikeouts per nine innings while continuing to churn out ground balls at a high clip.
However, the Astros have been his kryptonite. He’s faced them twice in his past five outings, and they’ve racked up 12 earned runs over 10 innings. The Astros have a host of batters who feast on southpaws, and that’s been evident against Perez. Overall, the Astros rank sixth in wRC+ against left-handers on the year.
On the other side, Hunter Brown will be making his first career start for Houston. Brown is considered the Astros’ best pitching prospect, and he just barely cracks the top 100 overall, per FanGraphs. Still, he just turned 24 years old, and the jump from Triple-A to the big leagues is massive. He’ll face a stiff test from the Rangers, who rank sixth in wRC+ against right-handers over the past 14 days.
Ultimately, this total feels too low at 8.0.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
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