Betting against 10-0 Alex Wood on the run line was a winner last time out, and in this game another situation presents itself with an even money run line underdog in Miami.
Miami Marlins starter Jose Urena takes the mound on Saturday against undefeated Alex Wood, and he brings a record of consistent performances with him. Although I’ll be the first to admit that he is due for some FIP regression because of his 3.54 ERA vs. 4.97 FIP discrepancy, he hasn’t given up more than 3 runs in any of his last seven starts. Urena has always been good at limiting dingers and runs an above average 10.8% HR/FB rate on the year through 86.1 innings pitched. He’s allowing just a .229 batting average allowed and carries a 1.22 WHIP.
Although I was thinking of holding off from fading Wood in this start because he should have a bounce back with velocity after the All-Star Break, the line value offered here is too good to pass up. The Marlins can be found at -110 on the underdog run line in this game with a winning pitcher at home. That’s an autobet given the situation, so I’ll be taking the Marlins +1.5 runs as one of my Saturday MLB Picks of the Day.
MLB Pick: Miami Marlins +1.5 RL, Best Line Offered, Heritage
In a battle of old and new, 2nd year pitcher Michael Fulmer takes the mound at home against Francisco Liriano in his 11th MLB season. There was a reason that Fulmer was getting votes for AL Rookie of the Year last year – he’s good.
Michael Fulmer has denied the recent home run trend by putting up a 6.6% HR/FB rate over his first 115.2 innings pitched in 2017. He’s the 7th ranked pitcher according to accrued WAR so far this season for qualified pitchers, and his 3.26 FIP is ranked 11th in the MLB. He has excellent control and a 5.6% BB rate, .235 batting average against, and 1.12 WHIP. There really are not a lot of holes in his game right now.
Francisco Liriano has had a rash of short starts this year because his high walk rate gets his pitch count up. He’s running the lowest K/9 rate he’s had in his last 5 years as well with an 8.21 K/9. Liriano allows a .282 batting average against right-handers over 55.1 innings pitched, so expect the Tigers to try to take advantage of that with lineup construction. And he’s been terrible on the road putting up a 7.63 FIP and walking batters at a 6.12 BB/9 rate. I’ll back Fulmer here as the more trustworthy pitcher at home, taking the Tigers at -132 on the moneyline at Pinnacle as one of my Saturday MLB Picks of the Day.
MLB Pick: Detroit Tigers ML, Best Line Offered, Pinnacle
2017 MLB Record, 135-123-7, +1.44 Units