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 12
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Cincinnati Reds At New York Yankees
Graham Ashcraft has come out of nowhere and pitched pretty well for the Reds. His 4.35 ERA doesn’t excite but he does have a 3.74 xERA and his 53.4% grounder rate makes me think his stuff should play up a bit in Yankee, where grounders are at more of a premium. With three starts of 5+ ER allowed this year, Gerrit Cole has not been immune to the occasional dud, and that’s all that’s needed to justify a bet at this monster price. I wouldn’t bet this lower than +265 as I do think the Yankees rate as large favorites, just not quite to the -300 level. Joey Votto returning to the lineup would make me feel a bit better here as well.
Current best price: Reds
Detroit Tigers At Kansas City Royals
This was my favorite play of the day, although the market has not come with me as it did on the other two. So, I may be missing something. But more than anything here, I’m staggered by how poor of a lineup the Royals ran out in the first game of this series on Monday. With Whit Merrifield likely hitting the IL, Michael A. Taylor and his career 81 wRC+ batted leadoff. The Kyle Isbel/Cam Gallagher/Ryan O’Hearn/Nicky Lopez bottom of the order is as bad as you’ll find. Closer Scott Barlow looks likely unavailable as well for KC.
And Beau Brieske has actually pitched reasonably well since adding a sinker in late May. Meanwhile, the Tigers lineup, while admittedly atrocious overall, has quietly hit lefties at an acceptable level with a 100 wRC+. I had the Tigers favored here and still think the current line around +105 is good for a bet.
Current best price: Tigers
San Diego Padres At Colorado Rockies
The Pads came through yesterday even if Taylor Rogers decided to make things interesting in the ninth. I’m back on them, but unfortunately, the price I got is long gone, so you’ll have to monitor this one and see if the line shifts due to any buy back.
Austin Gomber has been simply abhorrent at Coors this year with a .411 wOBA allowed, a striking development since he’s actually been better at home in his career. His command has just stunk, which you can see with his crashing called strike rate (down to about 14% from 18%) and a drop in swinging strikes as well. Nowhere will that get you punished harder than Coors, as mistakes get sent over the fence much more frequently. The Rockies lineup remains a bit short-handed without Kris Bryant. And the Padres have hit lefties much better this season, while the Rockies have been much, much worse against right-handed pitching, so a lot of matchups and trending season stats favor the Friars here.
Current best price: Padres
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:
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