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Major League Players Club MLB 1-5 Units (5/11/24)

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5 Picks.


FOLLOW THE UNIT INSTRUCTIONS. ASK IF YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND.


4:05PM EST: D-Backs ML +140 (4 Units)


Ryne Nelson starts for Arizona. He's really struggled at Chase Field, but he's been a road warrior for the D-Backs. He has a 3.86 ERA in 2 road starts this year and posted a 3.46 ERA in 16 Games (15 Starts) last season. He's allowed 1ER or less in 10 of those. As deep as the O's lineup is they really haven't produced too much. Over 9 innings they've scored 4 or less in 8 of their last 10 and 3 or less in 6 of those. Over the last 15 days the Orioles are batting .224 (23rd) with a modest .700 OPS. This is Nelson's 6th start of the season 2nd start following a short IL stint. He's working with an extra days rest and should be feeling good.


The Left-Handed John Means starts for Baltimore, and he was sharp in his 2024 debut. He tossed 7 scoreless in Cinci against an Ice-Cold Reds offense. He made 6 Triple A Rehab starts before getting the call up and posted an 8.68 ERA. He was a frontline starter for Baltimore back in 2021 with a 3.62 ERA across 26 starts. He's made just 7 MLB starts since as he's dealt with injuries. He's good when he's right but this Arizona lineup is the best in baseball against Lefties. They couldn't cash in on some opportunities against Cole Irvin yesterday, but they still laced 8 Hard-Hit balls against him and 13 total. Arizona just hit into some tough luck yesterday. They had a .292 xBA compared to Baltimore's .228 and but each team managed 7 Hits.


Each bullpen's had their fair share of issues, but the Diamondbacks high leverage guys got the night off is the loss yesterday. They also have something brewing with 22-year-old Justin Martinez. The hard throwing righty recorded 5 of his 6 outs via strikeout and he's pitched just once over the last week.


4:05PM EST: CHC/PIT Under 7 (2 Units).


Justin Steele's emerged as one of the best starters in baseball and he's allowed just 1 run through his first 2 starts of the season. The Cubs have been careful, but he'll be better stretched out today and he'll be plenty aggressive against the league's worst offense over the last week. The Cubs bullpen isn't reliable enough to back Chicago in this one.


One of the highest touted prospects in baseball history, Paul Skenes, is making his debut and we're buying into the hype. He had a .99 ERA in 7 Triple A starts with a ridiculous 14.82 K/9. He has some of the best stuff in the Majors. As long as he can hit the strike zone today the Cubs are going to have a very difficult time scoring runs against him and the Pirates top relivers are available behind him.


4:10PM EST: Nationals ML +135 (4 Units).


Jake Irvin starts for Washington. He has a 3.72 ERA but a 2.35 road ERA (4 starts). Outside of 1 bad start against the Dodgers (7ER) he's pitched incredibly well this year. It came in a back-to-back start against the Dodgers and that's a tall order for even the most seasoned arms. Boston's bats continued to struggle last night, going 1 for 9 with RISP and leaving 11 on base. It's been that type of run for them and the best part about yesterday's win for Washington was keeping Closer Kyle Finnegan out of the game. He's fresh and Boston hasn't seen him yet. He's 12 for 13 in SVO with a 1.65 ERA. Washington's bullpen continued to pitch well yesterday, tossing 4 scoreless innings. It's in good shape once again today.


Cooper Criswell is starting for Boston, and he's pitched well. He has a 1.74 ERA but an xERA of 3.65 so he's been a bit lucky. Still good either way but he doesn't provide length. He's pitched just 18.1 innings through 4 starts. He's a journeyman with a 4.47 career ERA across 17 games and 6 starts. He has a career 4.33 ERA in the Minors and had a 3.93 ERA at Triple A in 2023. Boston's got their entire starting rotation pitching well but this isn't some newfound stud featuring a sub 90 MPH sinker. The Nationals bats recorded 11 Hard-Hit balls on Tanner Houck last night. They also scored a couple runs on Kenley Jansen. The Boston Bullpen is good but it's not a truly elite group. Criswell's poised to get hit eventually and even if he doesn't, he won't pitch deep. The Nats offense has now scored 25 runs over their last 4 games.


4:10PM EST: Marlins ML +110 (2 Units).


This line alone pretty much tells you everything you need to know. The #1 team in baseball against the worst Team in baseball and they're just -130 without the line moving despite the entire universe hammering Philly. We'll break it down regardless...


Tajuan Walker starts for Philly, and he flat out sucks right now. His Velo's down and he's been blasted in Spring, in his Triple A Rehab starts, and in both of his MLB starts. Through 2 starts his average exit Velo, xSLG, xwOBA, xwOBACON, and xERA are all in the bottom 1% of baseball. He's been barreled up 9 times already (24.3%) which says a whole lot. His stuff flat out doesn't play right now, and even minor league hitters are squaring it up. He's also considerably worse on the road, posting a 5.25 ERA in 15 road starts last year and an 8.53 in his lone road start this year. This Marlins roster has a career .303 BA, .481 xSLG, and .386 xwOBA in 86 plate appearances against Walker.

 

The Left-Handed Jesus Luzardo returns from an IL stint today. He struggled earlier this year, and his health had a lot to do with it. He had a 3.32 ERA in 2022 and a 3.58 ERA in 2023. He also posted a 2.99 ERA at Home last year. He's a premier frontline starter when he's on and his stuff was sharp in his rehab assignment. He also has a 3.26 ERA in 5 career starts against the Phillies. The Marlins bullpen has plenty of very, very bad arms but they do have a few quality options. They have 4 relievers available today with ERA's that start with a 2 with at least 10+ appearances and Anthony Maldanado hasn't allowed a run through 6 games this season. They have the horses to back a vintage Luzardo start.


6:10PM EST: Astros Team Total Under 3.5 -120 (3 Units).


Lefty Tarik Skubal is arguably the best pitcher in baseball dating back to the end of last season. He has a 1.9 ERA through 7 starts this year with a .175 opponent BA and .77 WHIP. He's made 2 career starts against Houston, once in 2021 and another in 2022. He allowed a combined 3 runs across 13 innings pitched and that was before he turned into an Ace. Houston's most dangerous hitters are Left-Handed and Skubal's allowed just 3 hits to lefties this year with a 2.67 GO/AO ratio. He allowed just 5 hits to lefties in all of 2023 (15 starts). He's backed by one of the best bullpens in baseball and the top arms are ready. Joey Wentz (.61 ERA, 9G) and Alex Lange (.64 ERA, 16G) are both working on 2 days rest and Closer Jason Foley (9/10 SVO) is also available.

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