I’m pleased to announce that my weekly MLB betting feature is back this season. If you tailed “Bet on the Blue Jays” last year, you would have made some nice pocket change as I went 14-14 with +0.63 units in profit between my article and video plays. Now we’re back with a different name but the same goal: finding winners.
“Only 0.63 units of profit? That’s it?” Sure, I wasn’t the most successful MLB bettor in the world last season. But newsflash: I didn’t lose any money. That’s enough of a victory when it comes to betting on baseball, which is a much harder sport to handicap than football or basketball. I’ll take any winnings I can get.
Back to back nights with +money winners, with all legs except for the last hitting in the 3rd qtr ✅
— Nick Reid (@ReidAboutSports) April 14, 2022
I’ve had a scorching hot hand to kick off the NBA playoffs, and I’m hoping I can ride this wave into the baseball season. As I mentioned betting on baseball is not easy, especially in April coming off of an expedited spring training thanks to the lockout. A lockout that is to blame for Clayton Kershaw being pulled seven innings into a perfect game yesterday. Keep that in mind when placing bets and consider lowering your units until we get a bit of a better sample size.
I have two plays here, one for the Blue Jays vs Yankees season finale and one for another game on today’s 11-game MLB slate. While I like having bets for a game I’m watching, which is always the Jays, sometimes there just aren’t enough plays on one game that I like to place several wagers on it. That’s why sometimes I have to expand the board, and I found another play that looks real nice in today’s Rangers vs Angels matchup.
Odds will be measured in American-style odds, which is the most common gambling metric used in this part of the world, as well as decimal-style odds because that’s what I like using. If you’re interested in learning about American odds, or looking to convert American/Decimal/Fraction gambling odds, then you’re welcome. Both are good to know when first getting into sports gambling.
*And make sure to play responsibly. You shouldn’t try to make a living off of a regular season baseball game in September. This is for fun.
April 14, 7:05 PM: Toronto Blue Jays (+115 / 2.15) @ New York Yankees (-135 / 1.74)
Probable Pitchers: Kevin Gausman, RHP (TOR) vs Luis Severino, RHP (NYY)
Blue Jays First 5 Innings ML (+110 / 2.10)
This has been a great series between the Blue Jays and Yankees so far, with the good guys taking two out of the first three. Tonight we’ll see new Jay Kevin Gausman going up against Luis Severino, who has had a tumultuous young career in pinstripes. While the Yankees will be hungry to split the series, I like the Jays in this one and especially through the first five innings based on the pitching matchup.
Gausman was serviceable in his Blue Jays debut, allowing three earned runs while punching out five and walking none across five innings. His 0.98 FIP indicated he pitched much better than his stat line shows, and I was a big fan of Gausman’s pitch sequences. He has one of the most well-rounded arsenals in baseball and without a doubt the best splitter.
Kevin Gausman, 93mph Fastball (foul) and 85mph Splitter (swinging K), Overlay. pic.twitter.com/t01GvRoEIH
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 9, 2022
What I like most about this bet is the value we’re getting. I’ll take Gausman to outpitch Severino every day and twice on Sundays, and both offenses are about equal when you factor in that Teoscar Hernandez probably won’t be playing in this one after injuring himself on a swing last night. In that case give me the arm worth $110 million who has proven he can go deep in games and limit runs over the pitcher who is as big of an uncertainty as there is given his past injury history and inconsistencies. I like the Jays to win this one straight-up but I prefer backing them in the first five innings before bullpens make their way into the game.
Blue Jays F5 moneyline at plus money is a steal, especially because if it’s a tie through five the bet voids and you get your wager back.
Bonus: Dane Dunning (TEX) over 4.5 strikeouts (+128 / 2.28)
I’m sure you’re familiar with one of the starting pitchers in today’s bout between the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels. The Angels are expected to start Shohei Ohtani, who was lights out in his 2022 pitching debut with nine strikeouts and one walk in just 4 2/3 innings. But its his opponent who I’ll be backing in this one in Rangers righty Dane Dunning, who I like to record over 4.5 strikeouts.
Dunning, a 34th round pick by the Jays in 2013, hasn’t taken the league by storm since his debut in 2020 like we’ve seen with Ohtani. However, the 27-year old has made strides within the Rangers’ rotation and finished last season with a 3.94 FIP and 8.7 K/9, which aren’t bad numbers whatsoever.
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) April 18, 2021
Dunning is right around a strikeout-per-inning guy, which I think is what we’d need at minimum to hit this bet. Dunning went five innings in his first start of the season and only punched out four Jays at the Rogers Centre, but this matchup is much better. The Angels are whiffing nine times/game on average so far this season, and last night they struck out a whopping 15 times with a dozen of those coming at the hands of Miami Marlins starter Jesus Luzardo.
Dunning needed only 70 pitches to strike out six Angels in his first start against them last season, and with a start already under his belt I look for his pitch count to increase. The opposing lineup is daunting with Ohtani, Mike Trout, and Anthony Rendon, but there will be at least five batters in their lineup with K% rates above 25%. I think backing a pitcher going up against a strikeout-prone team who he has history of missing bats against is a fantastic play at plus odds. Pitcher K props was one of my most profitable bets last season and expect to see a bunch of them from me again in 2022.