MLB Best Bets for Monday (7/5)
FTN's Pat Matvichuk picks out his favorite bets around baseball for the MLB Monday slate.
Jul 05, 2021, 11:06 AM EDT
After a long Fourth of July weekend celebration, we ease back into a new betting week with an 11-game MLB slate. With no afternoon action scheduled, bettors will have plenty of time to nurse their hangovers without having to miss an inning of action. We’re looking to keep the momentum rolling after yesterday’s two best bets cashes, so let’s dive into Monday’s slate and see where the value is trying to hide today.
Milwaukee Brewers @ New York Mets
Milwaukee and New York will open up a three-game series tonight in the Big Apple. Milwaukee’s ace, Brandon Woodruff, will be on the mound to try and seal a game one win against New York rookie Tylor Megill.
For two teams leading their respective divisions, Milwaukee by seven games over Cincinnati and New York 3.5 games over Atlanta, they’re both fairly terrible at the dish against right-handed pitching. New York’s .297 wOBA and 92 wRC+ rank 24th and 17th in the majors while Milwaukee’s .302 wOBA and 89 wRC+ finish 18th and 21st respectively. Both teams are firmly in the lower half of the league in terms of OBP and OPS while checking in even lower with two bottom-10 SLG marks. Over the last 30 days, Milwaukee and New York have identical 7.5% barrel percentages, ranking in the bottom half of the league, to go along with average exit velocities that don’t even crack the top 20. To make matters worse in terms of any offensive production, New York is one of the worst offensive teams at home while Milwaukee is a below-average offense on the road. With this game being played in one of the worst run-scoring environments in all of baseball, offensive production could be scare in this one.
On the bump for Milwaukee is their No. 1 starter, Brandon Woodruff. Through 16 starts on the year, he’s pitched phenomenally to the tune of a 1.87 ERA and a 2.79 FIP. Excluding his one hiccup against Colorado where he allowed five earned runs, he’s only been tagged for three runs once (on Opening Day) and has let up two or less runs in his other 14 starts. Opposing batters are hitting a putrid .155 against Woodruff while his WHIP sits at a minuscule 0.78. He ranks in the top 15% of major league pitchers in terms of average exit velocity, hard hit%, xBA, barrel%, K% and BB% to go along with his elite top-10 percent marks in xwOBA, xERA and xSLG. No matter which way you slice it, Woodruff has been one of the best starters in the league right now, and I doubt New York’s offense will be the one that gets to him.
For New York, it’s Tylor Megill that gets the pleasure of trying to outduel Woodruff. Through just two starts on the year, Megill currently doesn’t have a decision but comes into the game with a 4.82 ERA and a 4.66 FIP. Certainly numbers that aren’t intimidating, but he has been touched by some bad luck with a 22.2% HR/FB rate that, when taking into consideration, actually puts his xFIP around 3.57, a respectable number for anyone, let alone a rookie with two starts to his name. Matchup-wise, he’s also had some tough luck, as his only two starts have both come against Atlanta, who happens to be one of the better offenses in the majors, especially against righties. Milwaukee’s lineup should be much easier for Megill to navigate and if he can continue his big K/9 figure (11.57 K/9) while some positive regression in terms of HR/FB ratio comes his way, he’ll be able to limit Milwaukee’s scoring chances.
It’s been a little while since we’ve touched on a total in a best bets article, so no better time than the present, right? This game consists of two bad offenses, one of the least hitter friendly parks in the league, an ace starting pitcher and a rookie with decent underlying stats. Milwaukee’s road unders have been 22-19 (53.6%) to start the year while New York’s home unders have been a ridiculous 24-8-3 (72.8%). I expect both teams’ offenses to continue to struggle, so look for a low scoring affair in this one. Under 7, +100.