Sitting at 13-8 for +6.21 units so far, Dalton Brown is back with two more best bets for Monday's MLB slate of games.
7:07 p.m. ET: Houston Astros at Toronto Blue Jays: Astros moneyline (+115) at WynnBet
The Houston Astros will open up a series north of the border with the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday, and I'm backing Houston while once again fading Alek Manoah.
Manoah, once Toronto's ace, has fallen on exceptionally hard times this season. He is 1-6 with a 5.46 ERA, but his xERA of 6.44 suggests things could have been even worse for him so far. The righty completed only seven total innings over his last two starts, but still managed to walk eight batters en route to allowing seven earned runs.
Brandon Bielak will start for Houston, and while his Baseball Savant metrics aren't pretty, his results have been better than even Houston bargained for. The righty is 2-2 with a 3.19 ERA, and has allowed just one run in three of his last four starts.
While Toronto has been the better of these two offenses against right-handed pitching this season, Houston is more than capable of getting after Manoah and will find its way into Toronto's bullpen before long. In a game that should produce plenty of runs, it's difficult for me make Houston anything worse than a pick'em here against Manoah - so we will gladly take the 15 cents of value on the moneyline.
8:05 p.m. ET: St. Louis Cardinals at Texas Rangers: OVER 9.5 (-106) at FanDuel
The St. Louis Cardinals are traveling south to begin a three-game series with the Rangers Monday night in Arlington, and both starting pitchers are primed to surrender runs in this spot.
Adam Wainwright (2-1, 6.15 ERA) is looking his age and then some for the Cardinals, surrendering an xERA of 6.48 and three or more earned runs in every start. The Texas Rangers are not a group to throw a below average righty at right now, either - Texas ranks second in baseball in wRC+ (116) against righties since May 1, and swept the Mariners over the weekend while scoring 28 runs over the last two days. To say that the Rangers are in an offensive rhythm would be underselling their current form, and Adam Wainwright is as hittable as anyone right now.
Texas will counter with Martin Perez (6-1, 4.43), a pitcher who doesn't jump off the page as fade material but is stepping into a hornet's nest against the Cardinals. Perez has seen cracks in his foundation of late, surrendering a 6.91 ERA since May 1, seven or more hits in four of his last five starts, and four of more earned runs in three of his last five. His xERA of 5.31 suggests that this negative downturn is a continued regression toward his actual form, and St. Louis has dominated left-handed pitching (110 wRC+ since May 1, and 117 wRC+ for the season).
Neither bullpen has been particularly dominant, either - since May 1, St. Louis' unit ranks 16th in reliever ERA while Texas ranks 28th.