MLB Best Bets, April 29th, 2023
Back-to-back clean sweeps as we look for our third straight winning day. There are four games that caught our attention in today's MLB slate.
For those of you who have been watching the Not Gambling Advice stream, I’ve been appearing and giving my picks. Throughout the season, I will continue to make my picks on the show, which streams on YouTube and Twitch every day from 4:00 to 6:30 PM ET.
We have found ourselves on a little bit of a heater. We have had back-to-back perfect days, and it feels good being on the right side. Let’s take this momentum and finish the weekend with some winners. There is a loaded slate of games today, and we got five plays on the card. Let’s rock.
Just so we all know, I’m using BetMGM lines only this year. Here’s a link to get started with a risk-free $1000 bet. You can also use code “JB200” if you’re betting on MLB. Wager $10 on any MLB game and receive $200 instantly. All prop entries will be on PrizePicks: Here’s a link to get a 100% deposit match.
2023 Overall Record: 74-42-1 (+33.61 U)
Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Washington Nationals @ 1:05 PM ET
Pitching Matchup: Rich Hill vs. Patrick Corbin
This game has already begun as of publication.
System play! Non-divisional road favorites! We had the Pirates yesterday as well, but they were postponed due to the weather, and we are looking at Game 1 of the doubleheader. The Pirates enter this game tied with the Atlanta Braves for the best record in baseball. Nobody expected this out of Pittsburgh, but I want to ride their hot streak as long as I can.
The line for this game opened at -132 and is steamed up all the way to -147. I’m glad I locked this one in early. Non-divisional road favorites with steam up ten cents are hitting at over 70% this season. This is also a spot to fade Patrick Corbin, who is coming off his best start of the year, allowing only three runs in six innings and striking out six.
The Nationals have typically hit left-handers better, and Rich Hill isn’t going to blow it by Washington’s hitters. However, the Pirates have been hitting lefties well as of late; they are 5-0 in their last five games against a left-handed starter.
The Pirates are better on the road with a 9-4 record, while the Nationals are just 2-9 at home. I get this might be a square play, but I’m going to bet on a team that’s won nine of their last ten games. It’s a system play as well, and we aren’t going to overthink it. Pirates by a million.
The Play: Pittsburgh Pirates ML (-132) 2.64 U to win 2 U
Atlanta Braves vs. New York Mets @ 4:05 PM ET
Pitching Matchup: Spencer Strider vs. Tylor Megill
We cashed the Braves yesterday on a two-unit play, and I always say if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it. Atlanta is by far the better team, and Spencer Strider is turning into one of the best pitchers in all of baseball. It’s hard for me to see the Mets have much success against the Braves right-hander.
The line for this game opened at -148 in favor of Atlanta and is now sitting at -170. Everyone is on Strider and the Braves, and I’m more than comfortable paying the juice. Tylor Megill comes into this game with a 3-1 record and a 3.96 ERA. Those numbers are deceiving – Megill’s expected ERA is above six and ranks toward the bottom in xBA, xSLG, and chase rate, according to Statcast. He’s facing a Braves lineup that is betting .255 with a .448 SLG.
Atlanta is just like Pittsburgh and is one of the hottest teams in the league. The Braves are 5-1 in their last six road games against a righty, 9-1 in their last ten road games, and 11-2 overall on the road. An even bigger stat for you, Atlanta is 42-10 in their last 52 games during Game 2 of a series. Yeah, give me the Braves.
The Play: Atlanta Braves ML (-170) 1.7 U to win 1 U & Braves -1.5 (-110) 1.1 U to win 1 U
Chicago Cubs vs. Miami Marlins @ 4:05 PM ET
Pitching Matchup: Caleb Kilian vs. Edward Cabrera
The Marlins squeaked out a 3-2 win yesterday in walk-off fashion. Miami is quietly sitting a game above .500 and has shown some bright spots early on this season. Heading into this matchup, the Marlins send out Edward Cabrera, who continues to struggle with finding the strike zone.
Cabrera is in the 2nd percentile of the league in BB%, which is absolutely dreadful. He is walking batters 19.2% of the time, and those numbers won’t cut it for the former top prospect. He is known for his electric stuff and ability to strike out any hitter, but he’s only managed to go past the fifth inning once this season.
For the Cubs, they are sending out Caleb Kilian, who is making his first start of the season. He started three games last year for Chicago and finished with a 10.32 ERA. Having to make his first start on the road isn’t going to help the young starter. Miami usually plays better at home and is batting .250 as a team in their own stadium.
Our eyes are on the total in this game, and with it set at 8.5 at -120, I expect for it to move to 9 come gametime. With a pitcher making his first start of the season on the road and with the other struggling to throw strikes, I see this one going over.
The Play: Chicago Cubs vs. Miami Marlins O 8.5 (-120) 1.2 U to win 1 U
Los Angeles Angels vs. Milwaukee Brewers @ 7:10 PM ET
Pitching Matchup: Reid Detmers vs. Corbin Burnes
We are fading the Angels. This is another system play that is hitting over 62% of the time, and that’s interleague favorites. The Brewers are -140 favorites at home, and with the system match and trends in their favor, it’s tough not to ride with the Brew Crew.
The Angels lost the series opener yesterday, and today they send out left-hander Reid Detmers. He has pitched well this season with a 4.15 ERA and is averaging over a strikeout per inning. The Brewers, however, have had success against lefties this season – the Brewers have a .640 winning percentage against left-handers and are 7-1 in their last eight interleague games against a lefty.
Corbin Burnes hasn’t returned to his Cy Young form quite yet. He has a 4.55 ERA, but his expected ERA is 3.57, according to Statcast. He hasn’t pitched poorly, but we haven’t seen the dominance we saw in years prior. Burnes is still in the upper percentiles in xERA/xwOBA, chase rate, and barrel rate, and he should have success against Los Angeles.
The Angels are 2-10 in their last 12 interleague road games and 1-9 in their last ten interleague games against a right-handed starter. I mentioned the trends earlier, and none of them favor Los Angeles. Burnes has pitched worse at home this season, but this is a prime bounce-back opportunity. Give me the Brew Crew.
The Play: Milwaukee Brewers ML (-140) 1.4 U to win 1 U