With only six games on Thursday evening’s MLB card, we have less research to do but also fewer spots to key in on. Here are a couple of the strongest spots that stand out to me from a betting angle.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
CHICAGO WHITE SOX VS. MINNESOTA TWINS (8:10 P.M. ET)
We should get a pitchers’ duel between Jose Berrios and and Lucas Giolito. Giolito’s been spectacular this season, with an 11-4 record, and a 3.12 ERA. Giolito went through an insane stretch as the most profitable pitcher in baseball, with the White Sox winning nine consecutive games he started from the beginning of May through mid-June. However, Chicago’s dropped four of Giolito’s past six starts, with the ace giving up 18 earned runs by himself in the four losses.
Berrios has been similarly dominant this season but has been more consistent — a 2.96 ERA, with April being his worst individual month (3.69 ERA). The Twins somehow have dropped Berrios’ past four starts, but he’s yet to allow more than three earned runs in any of those outings. That might be helping us get a better price on him here. Prior to this four-game stretch, Minnesota came out on top in 12 of Berrios’ 16 starts. Look for the Twins to get back to being that type of team with Berrios on the mound, holding a huge offensive advantage here — averaging 6.06 runs per game on the road, versus 4.4 runs per game at home for the White Sox.
Related Bet: CHICAGO WHITE SOX VS. MINNESOTA TWINSTotal Runs: First 5 Innings UNDER 4.5 (-105)
While I like the Twins to prevail in this one, it doesn’t mean it won’t be tough to earn the lead. This one could get off to a low-scoring start given the elite pitching matchup. Giolito went five scoreless innings against the Twins earlier in the season, allowing just one hit — but the bullpen gave up three runs over the final four innings. Berrios has faced the White Sox twice this season, allowing four earned runs in 14 innings.
KANSAS CITY ROYALS VS. CLEVELAND INDIANS (8:15 P.M. ET)
While this is about as much juice as I’d lay on a moneyline play, I can’t turn it down with how large of an advantage the Indians have across the board in this game. There’s enough here to suggest making a play on the run line if you prefer getting the better price, but I’m going with a safer option in the moneyline. Starting pitching, relief pitching and offense all lean in favor of the Indians, and in pretty strong fashion.
Adam Plutko has a 4.81 ERA on the season and has given up just two runs to the Royals in 11 innings. Mike Montgomery has a 6.83 ERA this season and was rocked by the Indians for five runs in just two innings (which also happens to be his most recent outing and team debut — a 10-5 loss). Cleveland has the top ranked bullpen in baseball by a pretty wide margin, with a 3.30 ERA. Kansas City’s bullpen ranks just 22nd overall. Offensively, the Indians finally are picking up steam, while the Royals rank just 25th. Everything is pointing to the Indians in this one.
LOS ANGELES ANGELS VS. BALTIMORE ORIOLES (10:07 P.M. ET)
LAA -1.5 (-120)
The Angels are red-hot coming into this one, winners of three of their past four series, the outlier being a split against the Astros. The most recent series was their most impressive, winning both games across town at Dodger Stadium. Jose Suarez has been solid enough for the Angels. Despite a 5.51 ERA, the Angels have found ways to win two of his three starts this month, both by three-plus runs. The bullpen has been much improved in this stretch, as has the offense.
But as usual, this is more about fading the Orioles. Jimmy Yacabonis will make his third start of the season but has appeared in 23 games. He has a 6.95 ERA, including a 10.13 ERA in July. His most recent outing was his worst of the bunch, giving up seven runs to the Red Sox in just a third of an inning. Baltimore’s bullpen ranks dead last in baseball, leaving little help behind Yacabonis if he has a short outing. Offensively, the Angels have cracked the top 10 in runs per game and average 5.31 per game at home. Meanwhile, Baltimore ranks just 27th in runs per game.
PARLAY OF THE DAY
MIN/CLE/LAA ML (+304)
Nothing fancy here, just taking the three teams we like and going for a 3:1 payout on the moneylines. If you wind up reading this article earlier in the afternoon, you can add the Nationals to the parlay — Max Scherzer faces the Nolan Arenado-less Rockies at home at 4:05 P.M. ET and ups the payout to +438.
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