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Sixty percent of Thursday’s Major League Baseball games are between divisional opponents, so bettors should have more data to make informed wagers. Read on for our top MLB prop picks and best bets for Thursday based on the best MLB odds.

No National League team has longer than a two-game active winning or losing streak, as parity has reigned supreme over the last few days. Meanwhile, the Seattle Mariners can tie the Los Angeles Angels for the longest active winning streak at four games if they can sweep the Oakland Athletics.

Here are our top MLB prop picks and best bets for Thursday (odds via DraftKings, Caesars, and BetMGM; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Thursday’s MLB schedule and odds

(odds via DraftKings)

  • St. Louis Cardinals (-165) vs. Cincinnati Reds (+140)
  • Toronto Blue Jays (+120) vs. Tampa Bay Rays (-140)
  • Miami Marlins (-125) vs. Colorado Rockies (+105)
  • San Diego Padres (-180) vs. Washington Nationals (+155)
  • Chicago White Sox (-140) vs. Detroit Tigers (+120)
  • Baltimore Orioles (+105) vs. New York Yankees (-125)
  • Philadelphia Phillies (-115) vs. Atlanta Braves (-105)
  • New York Mets (-110) vs. Chicago Cubs (-110)
  • San Francisco Giants (OFF) vs. Milwaukee Brewers
  • Oakland Athletics (+195) vs. Seattle Mariners (-230)

Thursday’s MLB best bets

  • Player prop: Alek Manoah Under 2.5 earned runs (+111 via Caesars) vs. Rays ⭐⭐⭐
  • Player prop: Kyle Freeland Over 15.5 outs recorded (-110 via DraftKings) vs. Marlins ⭐⭐⭐
  • Player prop: Cedric Mullins Over 1.5 hits + runs + RBIs (-130 via DraftKings) vs. Yankees ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Moneyline: Cubs ML (-110 via BetMGM) vs. Mets ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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Thursday’s MLB prop picks

Player prop: Alek Manoah Under 2.5 earned runs vs. Rays (+111 via Caesars) ⭐⭐⭐

The Tampa Bay Rays had long held the title of the highest-scoring team in the majors but have since been surpassed by the Texas Rangers, as they have been held to two or fewer runs in three of their previous seven games. 

The fact that Toronto Blue Jays starter Alek Manoah has held current Rays to a .148/.183/.193 slash line in 88 combined at-bats should be taken with a grain of salt, considering this is by far the most potent Tampa Bay lineup he has ever seen. But we like his chances of success again Thursday as he has held two top-10 MVP candidates (per current MLB MVP odds) in Wander Franco and Randy Arozarena to a combined 6-for-26 with just one extra-base hit and eight strikeouts.

We are headed to Caesars for this wager, the only sportsbook offering plus-money odds for your Blue Jays vs. Rays picks.

Player prop: Kyle Freeland Over 15.5 outs recorded vs. Marlins (-110 via DraftKings) ⭐⭐⭐

Colorado Rockies lefty Kyle Freeland has made 10 starts, five of which are against teams currently without a winning record. In those starts, he has pitched to a 1.79 ERA (six earned runs in 30 2/3 innings) compared to a 6.89 ERA against teams over .500. Freeland also has recorded at least 18 outs in all five starts against non-.500 teams.

This is only a three-star play, as Miami is in its better-hitting split with a top-10 wRC+ against left-handed pitching. However, the Marlins also rank 14th in ISO against southpaws, and their sixth-ranked slugging percentage is less threatening to Freeland, who has allowed just one home run in the last 20 innings.  

Making this wager at DraftKings saves quite a bit in juice compared to the -119 odds at Caesars.

Player prop: Cedric Mullins Over 1.5 hits + runs + RBIs vs. Yankees (-130 via DraftKings) ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Baltimore Orioles leadoff hitter Cedric Mullins entered Wednesday on a six-game hitting streak, going 10-for-23 in that span with two home runs, four runs scored, six RBIs, and just one strikeout. His ability to consistently put the ball in play is a big reason for his .359 OBP, which ranks second among all Orioles hitters (min. 100 AB). 

Mullins now faces New York Yankees righty Clarke Schmidt, who is just 1-3 with a 5.20 ERA in six home starts. This is a four-star play, as Schmidt has been torched by left-handed batters, allowing five home runs and a .356 OBA. In addition, per Inside Edge, Mullins entered Wednesday with the most late-inning RBIs (20) in the majors, which means that he has an excellent chance for offensive success even after Schmidt is removed from the game.    

Given that Mullins is as high as -230 at other sportsbooks to record at least one hit, this is a five-star MLB pick as we are getting much better value at DraftKings by combining those odds with him either scoring a run, driving in a run, or getting a second hit. 

Thursday’s MLB game picks

Moneyline: Cubs ML vs. Mets (-110 via BetMGM) ⭐⭐⭐⭐

The New York Mets’ recent five-game winning streak was met with skepticism by many, considering all five wins were by one run. Inevitably, that streak was halted with back-to-back losses by a combined 11-4 in the first two games of the series against the Chicago Cubs, who have a +23 run differential at Wrigley Field compared to a +5 differential away from home.

No Mets starter outside of Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander, or Kodai Senga can be trusted, as all other pitchers who have made four-plus starts have an ERA of 4.32 or higher. The worst is Carlos Carrasco, who has an 8.68 ERA and has not shown an ability to strike people out. Carrasco has an 11:10 K:BB ratio through 18 2/3 innings and ranks in the ninth percentile or lower in barrels and xSLG. 

The Cubs are 0-7 in Taillon’s seven starts this season, but four of the previous five losses have been by two or fewer runs, and the Mets have won just three of their last 11 road games and nine of the last 33 overall against Chicago.

BetMGM is one of three sportsbooks (DraftKings and PointsBet are the others) that have this game as a virtual pick’em, but we are jumping at these odds now before bettors fade the slumping Mets and drive the Cubs’ price up.

MLB best bets made 5/25/2023 at 6:34 a.m. ET.

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