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MLB Picks For Sunday, June 12
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Baltimore Orioles At Kansas City Royals
Major League starters don’t come a whole lot worse than Dean Kremer. With a 5.87 career FIP and a 5.11 career SIERA, he may not keep pitching to his career 6.81 ERA, but I don’t expect anything particularly good to come from his right hand. Brad Keller may not be a good pitcher, but he’s certainly projecting well ahead of those numbers. My main concern here is Baltimore is quite good at lifting the ball (second-lowest GB%), which matches up well for them against Keller and his grounder lean.
I still think the Royals should be bigger favorites around -130 than where I got them south of -120. I think their offense is probably underpriced by the market since Bobby Witt Jr. and MJ Melendez have added quite a bit after being awful (Witt) and absent (Melendez) early in the season.
Current best price: Royals
Miami Marlins At Houston Astros
This one moved quite heavily against me, so not looking like a good play. I bet the Marlins and cashed in the previous two games in this series and tried to go back to the well here. I guess I’m going to just keep fading Justin Verlander until I lose all my money, but I fail to see how he can keep anything close to his 2.13 ERA going when he has a below average called strike+whiff rate. His BABIP (.216) and LOB (91.3%) also remain incredibly lucky.
Edward Cabrera has all of the arm talent (13% swinging strikes) but walks way too many guys. The Astros are bottom-10 in chase rate, but at this price, I’m willing to gamble that this will be one of Cabrera’s good days. The Marlins also bring a top-five offense to the table in terms of hitting right-handed starters.
Current best price: Marlins
Texas Rangers At Chicago White Sox
No more value in this one unfortunately as the market slammed Rangers overnight. I was stunned to see them this big of favorites against a decent right-handed pitcher when the formula has been clear: bet them versus lefties (143 wRC+) and fade them versus righties (78 wRC+). Jon Gray has been solid this season.
The projections like Michael Kopech but I’m not convinced. He walks way too many guys (4.24 BB/9) and is running a .180 BABIP and a 3% HR/FB rate. With a below average zone rate, first-strike rate and chase rate, I’m not sure I expect a ton of positive regression from him. The Rangers don’t match up amazingly as they’ve hit lefties much better and do play into Kopech’s fly ball tendency, but again, for the massive price I got, that’s OK. I wouldn’t bet this now unless a buy back comes in and you can get +135 or so.
Current best price: Rangers
New York Mets At LA Angels
This was a tough one to handicap yesterday, so much so that I skipped it entirely, but we got some clarity on key injured hitters. Mike Trout played and looked like his best self, blasting two homers, while Anthony Rendon also got back in the mix to leave the Angels close to full strength, although they still miss Taylor Ward. Pete Alonso also returned for the Mets.
Now that we know the Angels have the punch mostly back in their lineup, I’m comfortable laying a small price here against an awful pitcher in Taijuan Walker. Walker can barely miss a bat (9.5% swinging strikes) and his 3.28 ERA way outpaces his 4.96 SIERA. I have Patrick Sandoval rated quite a bit better, and the Mets have not hit lefties nearly as well this season.
Current best price: Angels
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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