The MLB schedule is a long journey lasting more than half of the year. While that makes it a grind, it also makes it a tremendous betting opportunity. It gives our MLB picks ample time to build a sample and hopefully overcome variance, and it provides the biggest menu of bets (and potential value) when compared to almost any other sport.
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MLB Picks For Tuesday, July 5
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Cleveland Guardians At Detroit Tigers
Drew Hutchison is bad. And I don’t mean garden-variety, replacement-level bad. I mean “hasn’t belonged on a Major League mound since 2014” bad. It baffles me that he’s getting a check. He hasn’t even been a good reliever this year or last, with a 5.88 xERA followed by a 5.53. His 21.1% called strike+whiff rate would very easily be the worst among MLB starters if he qualified.
I don’t think the Tigers mean for him to go long, but a lot of damage can be done in 4 IP. Complicating matters, long man Tyler Alexander is likely unavailable after working 3.1 IP on Monday. This doesn’t look like a great spot for Detroit, although the value is still admittedly thin here because Cal Quantrill is no great shakes either. I’d only bet this to -155.
Current best price: Guardians
Toronto Blue Jays At Oakland A’s
I was once a Yusei Kikuchi stan but have given up the idea that he’s ever going to pitch to the level that his SIERA or swinging strike numbers say he should. I think he needs to radically alter his pitch mix since he throws his two worst offerings — fastball and slider — the most, but that’s another story for another time. I’m not sure I’ve backed him once this year, but I guess I’ll take a taste against this sorry Oakland team.
Once again, the pitcher on the other bump looks like batting practice fodder to me. While the projections seem infatuated with Adrian Martinez for some reason, I stare at the 5.xx FIPs he put up at his last two Triple A stops across more than 100 IP and I don’t understand it. He wasn’t a prospect of any note either. The Blue Jays just have an immense advance in offensive firepower here, and I’m surprised they aren’t closer to -190.
Current best price: Jays
What to know about using MLB Picks
Generally, when looking over these MLB lines and breakdowns, there are a few things to keep in mind.
First, it’s a long season. There will be hot and cold streaks. Swings of 20+ units will happen. While I’ve had multiple winning seasons, there’s no guarantee I’ll come out ahead this year or any other. Always bet responsibly, and always line shop using our MLB page to find the best lines available at legal sportsbooks in your state. That will give you the best chance of turning a profit.
- MLB futures bets from TheLines writers Eli Hershkovich and Mo Nuwwarah
Furthermore, note that because of the process I’ll be using (attacking overnight markets), lines may shift significantly by the time you read this if you’re checking it out on game day. Hopefully the lines have moved in my favor, and if that’s the case – use your best judgment as to whether you still think the bet is as good as the current line.
I’ll base my plays heavily on starting pitchers, like most any MLB bettor. If you want to learn more about baseball so you can do your own handicapping, start with these resources breaking down a variety of useful metrics:
If you prefer your MLB previews in video form, subscribe to the YouTube channel of TheLines‘ sister site, PlayPicks. We’ll go over daily breakdowns there with the Coast 2 Coast crew.
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