Double Play: 2 Starters on Fade Watch Prompts Wagers on Phillies, Giants

Mark Lathrop

Wednesday, April 18, 2018 12:46 PM UTC

Wednesday, Apr. 18, 2018 12:46 PM UTC

It's hump day and MLB handicapper Mark Lathrop has two picks to add to your card that he believes have tremendous value. Read on as he breaks down Wednesday's top MLB selections.

2018 MLB Record: 18-11-2, +6.10u (3 pending)

MLB: Wednesday's Double PlayPhiladelphia Phillies (9-6 SU) vs. Atlanta Braves (9-6 SU)Free MLB Pick: Phillies ML +100Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3387756, "sportsbooksIds":[19,274,139,238,1389], "LineTypeId":2, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]

The Philadelphia Phillies finish up the sixth and final game of their road trip tonight against the Atlanta Braves. Their offense has struggled in recent games against the Braves, but a matchup with Brandon McCarthy may just be what the doctor ordered. There are six Phillies in the expected lineup that have an OBP over .333 against McCarthy, and also some red flags for the Braves pitcher going in. First is McCarthy’s line drive percentage, which is at 29.8 percent after his first 3 starts and is unsustainable at that rate without getting absolutely destroyed. Second is McCarthy’s velocity, which is down more than two ticks over last year -- with rumblings of a shoulder issue to boot.

The Phillies will counter with Vince Velasquez, who has pitched well this season and has also been the recipient of terrible luck. Velasquez is sporting an elite 1.65 FIP, even after giving up four earned runs in his first start of the year. Unearned runs were the culprit in that game, which are hard to predict and even harder to count on.

I’m firmly in the camp of fading McCarthy in this spot and, based on the MLB odds board numbers, will take Philadelphia on the moneyline as one of my Wednesday MLB Picks.

[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "

#RingTheBell pic.twitter.com/kxRcg2Q3lQ

— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) April 18, 2018
\n\n"}[/]

San Francisco Giants (SU) vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (8-5 SU)Free MLB Pick: Giants ML +145Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3387955, "sportsbooksIds":[19,274,139,238,1389], "LineTypeId":2, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]

I jumped on this line early and grabbed the San Francisco Giants at +145 while it was available on the MLB odds board, and one of the reasons was the splits the expected Giants lineup has against Arizona starter Robbie Ray. Hunter Pence (.700), Evan Longoria (.600), Austin Jackson (.500), Joe Panik (.444), and Andrew McCutchen (.400) all have on-base percentages over .400 against the left-hander. He is also coming off of a start against the Giants in which he pitched badly, allowing 3 earned runs while not getting out of the fourth inning. Walks have been a huge hindrance to Ray; he has a 6.32 BB/9 rate to start the year.

Chris Stratton gets the start for the Giants and carries a 3.20 FIP into this matchup. He hasn’t given up a home run on the year over 17.1 IP and has a .172 BAA. That level of dominance is unlikely to continue, but I like his chances here given his positive splits against an Arizona lineup batting just .234 against righties on the season. What’s better is the value presented by the line, with the hot start of the Diamondbacks skewing what should be a tossup game.

I’ll take the positive juice here and the Giants on the moneyline as another Wednesday MLB Pick.

comment here