Best Baseball Bets to Make on August 15

Rich Holman highlights Saturday's best bets.

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Phillies vs. Mets First Five Run Line
(-.5 -135 FD, -.5 -143 DK)


The Phillies bullpen has been the whipping boys of the league, as they’ve allowed an ERA north of 10.00 to start the year. How am I supposed to take advantage of Nola Day? Aaron Nola has looked like the ace we know and love. He’s throwing straight filth, as he’s posted a 39.7% K-BB%. WHAT?!?!? On the bump for the Mets is Steven Matz, who has struggled to open the year. The Mets southpaw has allowed 17 earned runs in 18.1 IP and a whopping 8 homers. Matz has struggled mightily away from Citi Field, posting a 7.01 ERA in 73.2 IP since the start of 2019.

When we take a look at the offenses, we find a Phillies team that has hit left-handed pitching very well. As a team, the Phillies have put up a .384 wOBA against lefties this year, while walking 14.5% of the time. The Mets are no shlubs themselves as they’ve posted a .334 wOBA against righties to start the season. That places them in the top third of the league, although they’ll likely be without Jeff McNeil again tonight. Make sure you check FTN’s Lineup page to ensure we get the optimal matchup before placing this bet. To max out our advantage of Phils bats against lefties, plus Nola, let’s roll with the Phillies -.5 after the first five innings.

Pick: Phillies -.5 First Five (-135 FD)


Indians vs. Tigers Under (7.5 -110 FD, 8 -120 DK)


In Detroit, we get a classic pitchers duel featuring Shane Bieber and Spencer Turnbull. Bear with me and maybe I can turn you on this one. I don’t think you need me to tell you that Bieber’s a stud. I also shouldn’t have to sell you that hard on the Tigers being bad against right-handed pitching (.263 wOBA over the last 14 days). Part three of the “Under Info” is that the Indians bullpen has been very good to start the year, posting a 2.98 ERA. Let’s see if I can sell you on this play.

Spencer Turnbull is off to a hot start, allowing just four earned runs over 18 innings thrown while striking out 17 batters. Two of those starts came against the Reds. Part one of our “info that might surprise” is that the Cleveland offense has actually been worse than the Tigers against right-handed pitching this year. For the season, they’ve put up a .270 wOBA against righties, with that number dwindling over the last 14 days (.259 wOBA) as well as the last week (.259 wOBA). Part two of our surprising info is that the Tigers bullpen has actually been decent. For the year, they’ve posted a 3.75 ERA which ranks in the top third of the league. When we look at what they’ve done more recently, we get a 2.61 ERA over the last 14 days and 2.89 ERA in the last 7 days. When you put all six pieces of the puzzle together, it leads me to bet the under.

Pick: Under 8 Runs (-120 DK)


Baltimore Orioles Team Total Over (4 +100 FD, 3.5 -112 DK)


This one may start off a little frightening, but don’t worry, I’m here for you. The Orioles get a matchup with Patrick Corbin, a pitcher that I really do like. However, the Orioles as a team have been absolutely crushing lefties this year. On the year they’ve posted a .391 wOBA against southpaws which is good for the second-best in the league. When we look at what they’ve done lately that number balloons to .431 wOBA over the last 14 days and an eye-popping .623 wOBA over the last 7 days. Yes, it’s a smaller sample size, but it confirms that the Orioles are indeed hot against lefties. FTN’s Lineup Optimizer has the Orioles’ team total set at 4.4 runs.

Corbin has been good to open the year, allowing just four earned runs over 18 innings pitched. However, since the beginning of 2019, Corbin has allowed a 4.02 ERA over his last 103 innings pitched on the road. That’s not awful, but it is a small dig in Corbin’s nearly-impenetrable armor. Finally, when we take a look at the Nats bullpen, we find they’ve allowed a 4.16 ERA this year — not the worst. However, when we trim that down to the last 14 days and last 7 days, we find ERAs of 5.51 and 5.85, respectively. Long story short, the bullpen is struggling as of late. I don’t expect to cash this ticket early, but with the O’s swinging hot bats, I expect them to grind out a “W” for us today.

Pick: Over 3.5 Runs (-112 DK)


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Featured image by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm on Twitter)

Rich Holman

Tax Auditor by day (I promise I'm not the devil), dad to twin velociraptors by night. Complete sports junkie. Philly fan that only boos occasionally.

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