All 30 teams are officially ready for action as MLB gears up for its first full week of the 2021 season. Naturally, we also have some key betting headlines to run through, so let’s dive into all the sweet angles that apply for the first few days.
Mets (-200) @ Phillies (+180)
April 5, 7:10 p.m. ET
The Mets are laying heavy chalk in their season opener behind two-time Cy Young winner Jacob deGrom, who’s owned the Phillies.
The 32-year-old right-hander’s posted an 8-1 record against the franchise across 17 starts and a strikeout rate close to 31% against the current roster since debuting in 2014. His eight wins against the club are actually more than the number of home runs he’s surrendered versus Philly (seven).
DeGrom squares off against Matt Moore, who’s struggled in a small sample versus the Mets. Current hitters are slashing .304/.333/.457 off the veteran southpaw, who hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2019.
With the Phillies just 9-20 in the last 29 games as ‘dogs, take another look at the visitors.
Rays (-115) @ Red Sox (-115)
April 5, 7:10 p.m. ET
So much for that spring training surge for the Red Sox offense, whose 159 runs scored was the second most in exhibition play. Boston was swept by the Orioles in its three-game series opener, getting outscored 18-5. Perhaps Monday’s clash against the Rays is when the bats heat up.
The Red Sox have cashed five of the last six as home underdogs, while six of the previous seven matchups between these two at Fenway have gone over the total. Overall, Boston and Tampa are on a blistering 12-3-2 run to the over across the last 17 meetings. Expect some fireworks Monday.
Astros @ Angels
April 6, 4:07 p.m. ET
Plenty of runs should also be plated when Zack Greinke and the Astros take on Griffin Canning and the Angels. The two AL West offenses got off to hot starts in their respective openers, as both averaged six runs or better through the first weekend.
L.A. and Houston have been trending over the total of late, cashing 22 of the last 32 meetings. Greinke had a perfect bid against the Angels broken up in the sixth inning during his most recent start versus the club but has surrendered a collective .271/.327/.481 line against the current lineup. Canning, meanwhile, finished below average in categories such as barrel rate, exit velocity, and slugging percentage last season.
Both lineups should be licking their chops ahead of Tuesday’s tilt.
White Sox @ Mariners (N/A)
April 7, 4:10 p.m. ET
Wednesday’s matchup between the White Sox and Mariners features two potential regression candidates in Dallas Keuchel and Justin Dunn.
Keuchel was brilliant in 2020. He logged a 6-2 record and career-best 1.99 ERA en route to a fifth-place finish in AL Cy Young voting. However, he was lucky in a couple of categories, including batting average (.218 allowed, .278 expected), slugging (.286, .392), and ERA (1.99, 4.30). The left-hander’s already gotten off to a rocky start, allowing six runs on five hits and a pair of walks in a no-decision to the Angels this past weekend.
As for Dunn, he was the most profitable starter in baseball last season, if you can believe it. The 25-year-old made 10 starts and netted $100 bettors a $730 rake on his way to a 4-1 record. But after finishing in the bottom-15 percent in exit velocity, hard-hit percentage, barrel rate, and walk rate in 2020, he’ll come down to earth sooner than later.
This is a recipe for a high-scoring affair.
Alex Kolodziej is a betting writer for RunSportBet. He can quote every line from “Rounders” and appreciates franchises that regularly wear alternate jerseys. Find him on Twitter @AJKolodziej.