MLB Picks Today, Best Bets, Odds, Predictions for April 9, 2024

Two MLB Picks for April 9!

Kyle Harrison of the San Francisco Giants pitching against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Oracle Park.
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 1: Kyle Harrison #45 of the San Francisco Giants pitching against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Oracle Park on October 1, 2023 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Suzanna Mitchell/San Francisco Giants/Getty Images)

One pick, one winner yesterday, again! We bet the over 10.5 runs in the Diamondbacks vs. Rockies game and it smacked in the eighth inning. Charlie Blackmon sealed the deal with a home run in the eighth inning, and the Diamondbacks added the 12th run to give everyone the win, even if you could only bet over 11.

Today, I’m back with two picks. I’m having more success by narrowing in my absolute favorite plays. We have had two straight winning days, how about a third?

These picks are available on BetMGM. Code “JustBaseball” for a first bet offer up to $1500.

2024 Record: 16-19 (-3.23 U)

Washington Nationals vs. San Francisco Giants @ 9:45 PM EST

Pitching Matchup: Josiah Gray vs. Kyle Harrison

Josiah Gray is on fade watch until proven otherwise. Maybe today is the day he figures it out, but I’m not about to stay away from the Giants’ history against him.

Ad – content continues below

When I was looking at the board last night, this one shot out at me immediately. Gray has been terrible to start the season, Harrison is a good matchup against the Nationals, and Washington got fat and happy off a win last night. The Giants are the better team on all sides of the ball; they are at home, and they get to show it against Josiah Gray.

Through 49 PA against the Giants’ current roster, his strikeout rate is lower than his walk rate. You rarely see that with a sample near 50 PA. While the opponent’s batting average is .200, the xBA is .300. Not to mention a .435 xwOBA and .657 xSLG. He has the worst expected numbers against an opponent on the board today.

We are seeing value here because his game logs look good. As I said, the ERA and opponent average are solid, but the elite quality of contact against him is undeniable. He’s allowing a 50% hard-hit rate with a drop in velocity across the board on his pitches. The Giants’ offense against righties could have been better, but this is an excellent spot to rebound.

I’m not a fan of this Nationals offense against lefties. While they did hit Blake Snell yesterday, it’s clear that Snell wasn’t fully ready. He had no command; it felt like a spring training ramp-up game.

The National’s offense has a 50 wRC+ against lefties this season, 50% below the league average. The only teams who can say they are worse are the White Sox and Marlins. They are tied with the Marlins for the worst ISO in the league, so I’m expecting almost no power from them. That’s important because Harrison gets in trouble with the long ball, allowing three home runs in just 11 innings.

I see a significant gap in the starting pitching matchup and a gap in the bullpen, but it’s not worth paying the expensive price. Let’s get and get out with the night game. Take this to -125, but it’s available at the same price on BetMGM.

Ad – content continues below

Projection: Giants First 5 -0.5 (-140)

The Pick: Giants First 5 Innings -0.5 (-115) Risk 1.15 Units

Player Props

Sonny Gray Under 4.5 Strikeouts (-125) Risk 0.625 Units

With a full workload, this would not be a play. Gray has an above-average strikeout rate against the Phillies overall. Philly is doing a better job not striking out, as we noted with MacKenzie Gore. They strike out near the league average rate against righties, ranking 13th highest.

It’s hard to make an accurate projection when someone is on a pitch count, but with 65 pitches being the rough estimate, I set his outs line at 13.5. With that outs line, I make the strikeout projection 3.9. That’s also generous with his health, as this is his first start this season. He dealt with a hamstring injury in spring training, and it’s not fully ramped up yet.

With a healthy Sonny Gray, I see value on the under. We’ve seen pitchers struggle in their first true start coming off an injury, so I think the ceiling is capped on Gray.

Busch Stadium also ranks as the sixth worst ballpark for strikeouts according to Baseball Savant Park Factors.

I won’t hammer it because of Gray’s excellent numbers against the Phillies, but it’s definitely worth a play.

Ad – content continues below