MLB Picks Today, Best Bets, Odds, Predictions for Sunday, April 21, 2024

One MLB Pick for Sunday, April 21!

Jason Foley
CLEVELAND, OHIO - AUGUST 19, 2023: Jason Foley #68 and Jake Rogers #34 of the Detroit Tigers celebrate the team's 4-3 win over the Cleveland Guardians at Progressive Field on August 19, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by George Kubas/Diamond Images via Getty Images)

We won yesterday! That was fun.

The Guardians almost blew the first five innings, but Josh Naylor had our back. Eflin went over his strikeouts at a big plus price, but we lost on Gavin Stone and Reese Olson. That’s why I like these alt lines, I’d rather lose at a plus price then paying juice on a regular line.

Today, BetMGM revealed a challenging board. A lot of the lines are spot on, but I found one play I really like.

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

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2024 Record: 25-30 (-6.85 U)

Detroit Tigers vs. Minnesota Twins @ 2:10 PM EST

Pitching Matchup: Casey Mize vs. Louie Varland

These starters aren’t big names, but they have qualities that should make them successful in these matchups. We also have tremendous pitching weather, rested bullpens, and two below-average offenses. We should stay under if both starters can make it through five innings without blowing up.

Casey Mize will pitch for the Tigers. He’s been really solid so far, averaging 5-6 innings per start while allowing two runs. On the surface, I think he’s a solid number four in a rotation, but he matches up well against the Twins.

Mize has been exceptional against left-handed bats. Most right-handers have much better stats against right-handed bats, but not Mize. His split-finger is his best pitch, and it’s a left-handed hitter’s nightmare. Opponents are hitting .133 against the pitch with a 33% whiff rate. He relies on his slider to righties more often, and it’s been getting hit, but luckily, the Twins lineup will have few righties. Overall, lefties are hitting .103 against Mize.

Carlos Correa and Royce Lewis, the two best hitters in the Twins lineup and both righties, are on the IL. It makes sense why the Twins have a .176 batting average against Mize.

The Twins in general are a bad offense against right-handers. The Twins have the second lowest wRC+ against righties, just above the White Sox and below the Rockies.

I’m not a big Louie Varland guy, but this seems like the matchup for him to perform above his averages. He has great stuff, but the long-ball always hurts him. He’s allowed five home runs in 14 innings so far this year.

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Varland has faced a gauntlet of a schedule to start. He faced the Brewers, Dodgers, and Orioles, three teams with plenty of power.

Detroit is not a power-driven team. They have the third-lowest ISO in the league against righties, the second-lowest hard-hit rate, and the fourth-lowest slugging percentage. They have ten home runs against righties this year, the second-lowest in baseball, only above the White Sox. In general, they are the seventh worst offense by wRC+ against righties.

We are in a good spot if both starters allow two runs each in five innings. The Tigers have the number one bullpen ERA in baseball, while the Twins sit at sixth.

The Twins have Jorge Alcala, Brock Stewart, and Caleb Thielbar, three of their best four arms, ready to go. They also have Jay Jackson and Matt Bowman, who are both fine arms, if needed. The Twins bullpen is set up well after Varland exits.

The Tigers bullpen is also in a good spot. Will Vest, Shelby Miller, Jason Foley, and Tyler Holton are all ready to go. All four of these pitchers are rocking an ERA below 2.00.

The cherry on top is the weather. It’s supposed to be in the mid-high 50s during the game, with 16 MPH wind gusts blowing sideways. It’s chilly and windy, generally suboptimal hitting conditions. Target Field already leans towards pitchers, but the weather should help them even more.

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Overall, we have two bottom-ten offenses, two decent starters, two elite bullpens, and bad-hitting weather in a pitcher’s park.

Runs should come at a premium today. You can find a few 8.5s out there juiced towards the under, but I’ll take the better price at eight as I don’t see this game exceeding eight runs.

The Pick: Under 8 Runs (+100) Risk 1 Unit

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