It has been awhile since my last write up due to some much needed time away over the holiday weekend combined with the return of football season. To say time is crunched right now is an understatement. As baseball winds down and the masses turn their attention to football (myself included to some degree) there is still an opportunity to find value on the MLB board and zig when everyone zags. The last round of plays on August 30th did not go well going 1-3 but we have some strong options today!
Tuesday, September 13th, 2022
Cubs @ Mets 7:10 p.m. ET
Cubs UNDER 0.5 runs first 5 innings (+100) Draftkings
One name immediately jumps off the board today, Jacob deGrom. Arguably the best pitcher in the game gets a home matchup vs a Cubs lineup that is probably ready to call it for the year. Starting with the Cubs, yesterday I tweeted out a play on Chris Bassitt to hold the Cubs under 1.5 runs through the first 5 innings. This season vs pitchers with sub 3 ERAs the cubs allow pitchers to average
1.6 earned runs
1.3 runs in the first 5
deGrom’s numbers are significantly better with a 1.66 ERA and 0.55 WHIP. His xERA is only slightly higher at 1.8. In 7 starts this year he has allowed more than 1 run twice, both of which were to Atlanta who we can all agree is significantly better than the Cubs (top 10 offense vs league average). He has also been taking on an increased workload going 87 or more pitches in 4 straight. When going over 90 pitches he has gotten into the 7th inning each time. Lastly, the Braves recent push has made for a tight NL East race and the Mets can’t afford to be too careful with deGrom as they need wins. You cannot go wrong backing deGrom.
Cardinals @ Brewers 7:45 p.m. ET
Jordan Montgomery OVER 17.5 outs up to (-140)*no lines at time of publishing, will add updates on twitter when available
Since joining the Cardinals Jordan Montgomery has been lights out. He has made 7 starts, given up more than 1 run once, and allowed 0 runs 4 times. One of those starts was against today’s opponent, the Brewers. In that start he went 6 innings, gave up 4 hits, and 0 runs. The flip side of this is that all of these starts have been at home with the exception of 1 (at Chicago where he threw a 1 hit shutout). For the season Montgomery’s home road splits are similar and nothing concerning jumps out.
As for the Brewers, they have had their struggles vs lefties this year with an 87 WRC+. Since the all star break they are averaging 1.25 earned runs against lefties over an average of 5.1 innings. The innings sounds low but it's largely due to the quality of pitchers they have faced. Urias, Heaney, Steele, and Freeland are some of the better arms they have faced and Heaney gets pulled early regularly. The question for Montgomery is how deep will he go? The Cardinals have pulled him under 90 pitches on occasion and have an 8 game lead over the Brewers so they may choose to do it again if the situation dictates to manage his workload as the postseason approaches.
Phillies @ Marlins 6:40 p.m. ET
- Sandy Alcantara OVER 19.5 outs up to (-120)
*no lines at time of publishing, will add updates on twitter when available
I see Sandy Alcantara as a buy low today, if you could ever consider him a buy low. While he remains the hands down Cy Young favorite he has had a few rough outings recently by his standards.
9/8 @ PHI - 6 innings 3 earned runs (5 total)
9/2 @ ATL - 5 innings 6 runs
8/21 @ LAD - 3.2 innings 6 runs
The theme is road starts vs strong line ups. While a true ace he is even more dominant at home. His ERA is 1.61 at home vs 3.38 on the road. He averages almost 7.2 innings, 1.3 earned runs, and 104 pitches per home start (less than 100 pitches once in last 12 home starts). A great example of his home success is that after the 3.2 inning disaster at Dodger stadium he bounced back at home throwing a complete game allowing 1 run vs the very same Dodgers lineup.
Now for the opponent. The Phillies have seen Sandy 5 times this year and I have added the results below.
The theme with these is Mattingly leaving him in too long and giving up runs late as he has held the Phillies under 1 run 4 times in the first 5 innings. The most recent start had several “flukey” events. In the 4th inning he gave up a single to Hoskins with an expected batting average of .160 and a 2 run double to Stott with an exit velocity of 63.7 mph (it traveled a whopping 199 feet). In the 5th an error led to 3 additional batters coming to the plate and 2 unearned runs. I would call these breaks bad variance and if they didn't occur assume he would have pitched in the 7th, given up less than 1.5 in the first 5, and 2 or 3 runs overall. To apply another angle to the Phillies offense outside of just games against Sandy Alcantara, they have had 8 road games against pitchers who have performed similarly to Alcantara this season (Gallen, Scherzer, deGrom, Strider, Burnes). In those games starters have averaged 6.1 innings and 1.3 earned runs and 1.1 runs in the first 5 innings. Everything points to Sandy getting back on track.
- Jay Ray, Special to The Betting Predators