Clayton Kershaw

Wednesday brings us an awesome MLB card, and the action gets going early. There are just too many strong plays to completely gloss over the afternoon plays, so I’ll provide some late afternoon ones, as well as breakdown this evening’s card. Here are my top bets to consider:

All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.


Moneyline First 5 Innings: SD (-112)

Cal Quantrill quietly has been one of the best pitchers in baseball since the All-Star break. He already had been tremendous in San Diego all season, with a 2.93 ERA in nine outings (40 innings), but has just a 0.93 ERA in his past five outings. Quantrill’s allowed just three earned runs in his past 29 innings and is 4-1-2 ATS in the first five innings of his past seven outings.

Jalen Beeks will start for the Rays and has been going in the complete opposite direction since the break. Beeks has a 6.75 ERA in his past five outings (two starts), giving up 16 runs in 18 2/3 innings. Tampa’s bullpen has been much better than San Diego’s, and Beeks rarely goes more than four innings. So keeping this one to the early innings makes more sense.


Lead After 3 Innings: LAD (-117)

It’s very difficult to find a bet you don’t have to lay too much juice on to get a piece of Clayton Kershaw facing the Marlins on this slate. The Dodgers are -305 on the moneyline, which is a price we just can’t play. I am comfortable using LAD as a parlay piece, which we’ll touch on later, or even playing the run line at -167 odds.

But I wanted to find something we can play that has as close to even odds as possible, which is where the first three inning bet comes into play. Kershaw’s hit his stride out of the break, going 4-0 in five starts with a 1.74 ERA. When he faced Miami earlier in the year, he threw six shutout innings, allowing just two hits. We’re banking on Kershaw holding the Marlins scoreless for the first three innings here and being able to do some damage against Elieser Hernandez. Hernandez got destroyed in his lone outing against the Dodgers earlier in the season, giving up four runs in the time it took him to record just two outs. Hernandez also has a 6.32 ERA over the past month. The Dodgers should jump out to an early lead in this one.


Moneyline First 5 Innings: SEA (-143)

Edwin Jackson played a nasty little trick on us Friday night, holding the Royals to just one run, and lasting over six innings. I’m going to stick to the numbers that tell me Jackson is the worst pitcher in baseball, rather than buy into one good start — he had an 11.12 ERA entering Friday. The Seattle bats went off for 11 runs in Detroit on Tuesday and will carry some momentum into this matchup.

While Seattle’s bullpen is nearly as bad as Detroit’s, we’re just going to cut them both out of the equation here. Marco Gonzales has the pitching advantage in this one, and that’s what we want to highlight by playing the first five innings. Gonzales has been pretty solid all season, particularly away from home, where he has a 3.88 ERA. He faced the Tigers once this season, just recently in July. Gonzales allowed just six base-runners and one run in seven innings, punching out eight Detroit bats, en route to an 8-1 victory (SEA led 4-1 after five).


UNDER 9.5 (-106)

St. Louis unders have been a trend recently, hitting in 11 of its past 13 games. After flirting with a division lead in the NL Central, the Cardinals’ bats have gone ice cold. These are a couple of the worst offenses in baseball at the moment, particularly against RHPs, which makes Dakota Hudson and Brad Keller perfect starters for another under.

Four of Hudson’s past six starts have stayed under this number, and it’s probably the best spot of this streak, playing in Kansas City. Keller’s been much improved since the break, with a 3.05 ERA in six starts. He also has seen four of his past six starts go under this number. The Cardinals’ bullpen has been one of the best in baseball lately, which has helped continue driving this under trend.


LAD/SEA (+123)

The logic to this one is simple. We get Kershaw against the Marlins and fade Edwin Jackson all rolled into one bet for plus money. Getting the Dodgers down from -305 to plus-odds in just a two-team parlay with another favorable pitching mismatch feels like good value.

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