After a winner on Saturday, MLB handicapper Dalton Brown is back with a pair of best bets for Monday's baseball action.
By Dalton Brown
7:40 p.m. ET: Cleveland Guardians at Minnesota Twins: Twins F5 -0.5 (-115) at PointsBet
The Cleveland Guardians and Minnesota Twins will kick off a three-game set from Target Field on Monday. The series feels like a last gasp for Cleveland, which sits six games behind the Twins in the AL Central with no chance at a wild-card berth. Still, I’m rolling with Kenta Maeda and the home Twins - at least in the game’s early innings.
Maeda has been a bastion of consistency for Minnesota, consistently eating at least five innings and allowing three or fewer runs in 11 straight starts. He’s been especially stellar since the All-Star Break, pitching to a 3.46 ERA - including a 2.93 in July and a 3.43 mark in August.
He’ll be opposed by Guardians starter Xzavion Curry, a righty who has struggled since moving from the bullpen into Cleveland’s rotation. Curry’s last start against the Dodgers was cut short due to rain, but he hadn’t been effective. He’s allowed a 5.50 ERA over his last four starts, and his Baseball Savant page places him in the bottom 10% of pitchers in average exit velocity allowed, hard hit percentage allowed, and strikeout rate. Monday’s assignment sees him take on a Twins lineup that ranks fourth in baseball with a 127 wRC+ since the All-Star Break, too.
7:45 p.m. ET: San Diego Padres at St. Louis Cardinals: Padres F5 -0.5 (-120) at BetMGM
The San Diego Padres will head to Busch Stadium to open up a series with the Cardinals on Monday, a matchup of floundering teams who never lived up to lofty expectations. The same cannot be said for Padres starter Blake Snell, who we are once again backing on a first-five inning line here.
Snell hasn’t allowed more than three runs in a start since May 19, consistently delivering a competitive advantage to San Diego. His counterpart Adam Wainwright… well, that's a different story.
Wainwright’s 8.61 ERA speaks for itself, and his 7.63 xERA doesn’t provide much evidence that he deserves better than he’s achieved. Waino has surrendered six or more runs in three of four starts in August, giving him an absurd 14.73 ERA this month. He hasn’t picked up a win in more than two months, and I don’t see that changing here.