Best MLB Bets Today - Free (Thursday 5/25)
FTN's MLBdream picks out his best MLB bet for the Thursday slate around baseball.
May 25, 2023, 11:46 AM EDT
Welcome to the FTN’s free MLB Picks of the Day, featuring our favorite or best MLB bets. FTN will be posting a play or two from the MLB card — for free!
Today, MLBdream provides his picks.
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Best MLB Bets and Picks Today
Chicago White Sox @ Detroit Tigers
White Sox -155 @ Tigers +130 — Total 8 (Caesars Sportsbook)
Winners of seven of 10, the White Sox are playing some of their best baseball of the season as they head to Detroit for a four-game set with their division foes. I bet the White Sox on the moneyline, but that was about 20 cents ago and I wouldn’t lay the current number. However, I do have an edge in the K prop market with Lucas Giolito on the bump.
After a rough start to the season, Giolito is looking like the guy he was from 2019 to 2021 for Chicago. The righty’s 12.2% swinging-strike percentage is on the lower end for his career, but that number has bumped up over his last four starts and sits at 13.9%. Over that same stretch, his K% is 26.3%, as the 28-year-old has done a better job of working ahead in the count. Even with his slow start, Giolito has gone over this number in seven of his 10 starts, missing once by the hook. Both his slider and changeup carry a whiff% north of 30% and his fastball has been his best punchout pitch with a K% of 26.3%.
I mentioned Gio’s whiff rate on his changeup, and that bodes well for this matchup as the Tigers have the highest K% in MLB against that offering at 29.1%. The Tigers have a batting average of .186 and a slugging percentage of .266 on changeups this season. Detroit’s strikeout percentage against sliders has been slightly better than the league average but that number sits at 28%. Overall Detroit’s 23.9% K% is the eighth highest in the show and isn’t much better against right-handed pitchers at 23.5%. The Tigers strike out an average of 9.06 times a game, which is also the eighth-most in baseball. Six of the nine projected hitters for the Tigers have a K% over 24% since the start of last season.
I’m projecting Lucas Giolito to pitch about six innings Thursday evening and punch out the six or seven batters we need to cash. It’s always nice when Frank Brank’s Strikeout Model identifies the same edge; Frank projects Giolito for 6.60 K’s. I wouldn’t play this any higher than -145 so be sure to check out FTN’s Prop Shop to grab the best number on the market.
Lucas Giolito Over 5.5 K’s (-127, Caesars)