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Back to the Seattle Well: MLB Bets for April 9

Logan Gilbert

Logan Gilbert

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

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Going and partying on a weekend? Never heard of her. Well, actually I have, but that is beside the point. I would much rather spend my day watching all the MLB action on my new MLB.TV subscription that does not allow you to watch the in-market games or the ones shown on ESPN and now… Apple TV. Lol, seriously Apple TV? Give me a break. Nonetheless, it’s back to business as usual to kick off the weekend.

JohnnyVTV with a nice Friday bounce back. On the hunt in a locked and loaded Saturday slate.

Chicago White Sox (-136) @ Detroit Tigers (+115) | Over/Under 8.5

HELLLOOOO. The first F5 bet of the season for the South Side Sox cashed Friday. As I explained yesterday, this was one of the best bets for 2021, and probably my personal favorite. I’m fully expecting Chicago to be ripping F5 wins all season long. On the bump today, they have the guy I invested a lot in with Dylan Cease… something you also should have seen from my preseason articles. I hate trying to carry over one season to the next, but for much of the first few weeks that is really all we have to go off of. Against the Tigers in 2021, Cease had his best statistical profile. He tallied a 3-0 record with a 1.17 ERA and 31 ringups in just 23 innings to go along with a .188 opponent batting average.

The Tigers are trotting out Casey Mize to the mound today to try and slow down a potent White Sox offense. Mize has the makings to be a good starter in the MLB, so it’s fair to wonder if this is the year he makes that leap. In terms of today, I say the same thing Arya Stark learned to say to the God of Death in the first season of Game of Thrones, “Not today!” Chicago should jump out to another fast start.

Prediction: White Sox F5 ML (-125) - 1 unit

Dylan Cease O/U 6.5 K’s vs. Detroit Tigers

The kid has strikeout stuff. 226 punchout in just 165.2 innings a season ago with the second-best K/9 rate in the MLB at 12.6, which was just a shade behind Corbin Burnes. Cease is the guy I backed for the AL Cy Young and strikeout leader in 2022 because I believe this is the year he takes a big step. The Tigers lineup as a team notched the fourth-most strikeouts last season with 1,514. Now they insert strikeout enthusiast Javier Baez into that lineup, and it could be looking like a repeat.

However, if you read my write-up on the Gerrit Cole K prop yesterday, then you would have remembered for the first few weeks it might be time to adjust the approach on the strikeout totals. Yeah, sure look at the above where I mentioned how well Cease dominated the Tigers last year. Especially with the news that Lance Lynn will be out for at least a month, I expect Chicago to take it slow with their starting pitchers in the beginning, like most of what we have seen thus far. The lack of Spring Training has not only caused wildly lighter pitch counts but less than A+ stuff in most cases. Not sure Cease goes beyond five innings today. The line is juiced like a bodybuilder show, but I ultimately think this is the side to play.

Prediction: Dylan Cease UNDER 6.5 K’s (-150) -1 unit

Seattle Mariners (+120) @ Minnesota Twins (-140) | Over/Under 8.5

Back to the well. Seattle made me sweat yesterday but ultimately came through with a nice Opening Day dub. Today they are sending out Logan Gilbert to the bump to try and capture their second win of the new season. Gilbert quite simply was terrible in his rookie campaign, compiling a 4.68 ERA over 119 innings. Oof marone. The word around camp during the spring was that he’s ready to take a big leap forward in 2022.

The Twins are deploying their new acquisition, Sonny Gray, to handle the young gun Mariners lineup. Gray was okay in ‘21. He totaled a 4.19 ERA in 135.1 innings. The issue with Gray was that he was pretty much hit or miss. Despite notching nine quality starts (6 IP with three runs or better), he also had nine starts where he submitted five innings or less while surrendering at least three runs. Facing a Seattle lineup that left 10 runners on base yesterday, he cannot afford to allow the base paths to be occupied in his inaugural start with his new squad.

This is a pitching matchup of inconsistency. Given that fact, I would not feel comfortable backing Minnesota at this price even if I wanted to.

Prediction: Mariners ML - 1.0u

Boston Red Sox (+135) @ New York Yankees (-160) | Over/Under 9

Yesterday’s game was a good old-fashioned AL East slugfest. After trading blow for blow, the Yankees ultimately pulled out the walk-off win in the bottom of the 11th inning courtesy of a Josh Donaldson base hit. On Saturday, the Red Sox will task Nick Pivetta with slowing down the Yanks’ powerful offense. Pivetta certainly had some struggles a season ago with his 4.53 ERA, especially against New York where he clocked a 6.43 ERA in only seven innings across two starts. However, with a dangerous lineup like the Bo-Sox have, it is still difficult to count him out.

Welcome back, Sevy! Luis Severino has not started a game since October 15th of 2019 vs. the Houston Astros in the playoffs. Last season he managed to log a few appearances via the bullpen to dip his toes back into some live game action. The concern for him is not only the pitch count today, but what will we see from him? Being thrown into the fire immediately against a Red Sox team that can plate runs in a hurry is less than endearing.

This could be another over game the way both starters can implode along with the quick appearances the bullpen had to make in Friday’s game but based on the price I think Boston evens up the series today. Gimmie that on a plus money platter. Your honor, no objections!

Prediction: Red Sox ML - 1.0u

Justin Verlander O/U 6.5 K’s vs. the LA Angels

Welcome back to the show, Mr. Verlander. In his first start since July 24th of 2020, the “other JV” will be squaring off against a strong Angels lineup. Of course, Verlander is one of the best strikeout artists of not only the last decade but all time with his 9.1 K/9 rate.

Not only does my synopsis of early-season strikeout props apply with pitchers getting a lighter pitch count, but he has not pitched in two years. If the Astros want to make another deep postseason run, they need JV to be available for the entire season. That translates to the probability that he will not be hurling more than five innings today. I do love being in lockstep with my guy Vaughn Dalzell. Straight from his article on today’s write-up is an interesting note.

“Dating back to last season, the previous eight starting RHP went Under 6.5 Ks versus Los Angeles. Out of the last 25, there were only 10 (40%), per statmuse. In 2019, Verlander threw the four-seam fastball in 54.8% of his pitches, per, which is not a recipe for strikeouts.”

Over the course of the season, we likely see the leash lengthen for the two-time Cy Young winner. However, for today’s game, this ain’t it. Given this look, I would rather be wrong about going under than taking his over, but I doubt he notches seven-plus punchouts.

Prediction: Justin Verlander UNDER 6.5 K’s (-125) -1 unit

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