8/18 Starting Pitcher Report Highlighting MLB Betting Edge

Ross Benjamin

Monday, August 18, 2014 11:58 AM GMT

Our sports betting odds guru looks at two National League starting pitching matchups tonight, and searches for the best MLB betting value in each game. Read this informative MLB handicapping article which includes a pair of MLB free picks.

Atlanta Braves (Santana) vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (Worley) 1:40 PM ET
The Braves starter Ervin Santana has gone a very profitable 4-1 in his last 5 versus the money line while displaying good form in the process. In those 5-starts, the Braves hurler posted a stellar 2.38 ERA, and close to a 4:1 strikeout to walk ratio. He’s been a bit unfortunate on the road in 2014, going 4-7 against the money (-4.00 units) despite compiling a respectable 3.88 ERA in those outings.

The Pirates starter Vance Worley has gone an identical 4-1 in his last 5 against the money while displaying superb form. In those 5-outings the right-hander posted a brilliant 1.62 ERA. He’s started 4-times at PNC Park in Pittsburgh this season, going 3-1 against the money, and posted an impressive 2.00 ERA.

Advantage: Vance Worley has posted a very good 2.32 ERA in 10-starts this season, and that’s significant from a MLB handicapping perspective. He will be facing an Atlanta team that’s gone a dismal 0-13 the last 2-seasons when facing a National League starting pitcher with an ERA of 2.70 or less on the season. The Braves had an OBP of .306 heading into their game last night. Worley has gone a terrific 21-5 against the money in his career versus National League opponents with an OBP of .315 or less. I’m giving the advantage in this one to Vance Worley of the Pirates over Ervin Santana of the Braves and will apply this betting edge at a sportbook like 5Dimes.

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Find out who are the top ten pitchers as of August 15th in this FIP Leaderboard 

Cincinnati Reds (Leake) vs. St. Louis Cardinals (Masterson) 8:15 PM ET
The Reds starter Mike Leake comes off a shaky start last Tuesday at home versus the Red Sox. In that outing Leake allowed 5 earned runs and 8-hits in 5.0 innings during a 5-4 Reds loss. The Reds right-hander has gone 10-15 against the money (-5.20 units) this season with a 3.64 ERA. However, he’s seen both starts versus the Cardinals in 2014 go under the total while posting an excellent 0.86 ERA.

The Cardinals will counter with Justin Masterson who will be coming off his best start in nearly 2-months. The veteran hurler pitched 7.0 innings of scoreless baseball at Miami this past Wednesday, and allowed just 3-hits while not issuing any walks. Prior to that start, Masterson had allowed 5 earned runs or more in 5 of his previous 7-starts. Since the start of the 2011 season, Masterson has gone a perfect 3-0 against the money versus the Reds, had a microscopic 0.78 ERA, and a better than 4:1 strikeout to walk ratio.

Advantage: Based on both of these pitchers recent success when facing their opponents this evening, I’ll look for this game to be a surprisingly low scoring affair. I will be leaning toward making my MLB pick on going under the total in this game.

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