Hard to believe that we are getting close to the home stretch of the 2021 baseball season, but alas here we are. Take a look at three bets for Thursday that include a red-hot Blue Jays team and a pair of interesting young pitchers:
Angels @ Rangers Total Runs O/U 9
On Thursday afternoon, an immovable object in the struggling offenses of the Angels and Rangers meets an unstoppable force in the form of extremely subpar pitchers Dylan Bundy and Spencer Howard. While both the Angels and Rangers have been at the bottom of the MLB in wOBA over the last two weeks, but there is still a decent amount of offensive talent on both teams, especially LAA. Bundy has certainly earned his 6.66 ERA and wouldn’t even be in the rotation if not for a few injuries and the surprising trade of Andrew Heaney. Howard never quite put it together with the Phillies and a change of scenery might do him some good. However, I don’t think this is the best matchup for him to turn things around and 9 runs is simply too low for two starting pitchers of this low-caliber.
Pick: OVER 9 (-115 DK, -114 FD)
Blue Jays Total Runs O/U 5.5
The vaunted Blue Jays offense has been on fire over the last few weeks, led by George Springer who has slashed .517/.559/1.103 with 4 HRs over the last week. On Thursday, Toronto faces enigmatic Cleveland starter Triston McKenzie, who has looked masterful at times and befuddled at others. He has been more befuddled of late, allowing 13 runs over his last three starts including 6 HRs. That is not a good trend for the young starter especially going into a matchup against the powerful hitters that litter the Toronto lineup. Six runs should be easy for the Blue Jays and at +100, I will be taking that all day long.
Pick: OVER 5.5 (+100 DK)
Tarik Skubal/Touki Toussaint O/U 4.5 Ks
To wrap up our bets for today, we are going to parlay a couple of strikeout props for two young pitchers who are quietly coming into their own this season. Tarik Skubal has always showcased tantalizing stuff and strikeout numbers but has struggled with home runs in his brief Major League career. Skubal turned it around during June and started to look like the top prospect the Tigers had hoped for, but the home run problems have cropped back up of late. That is most likely why his strikeout prop on DraftKings is all the way down to 4.5, which is way too low for someone of Skubal’s caliber. On top of that, the Red Sox have the 2nd-highest K% (25.3%) over the past two weeks and have struggled offensively overall (.304 wOBA, 88 wRC+).
Touki Toussaint has eclipsed 4.5 Ks in each of his three starts this season, even in a rough outing last time out against the red-hot Milwaukee Brewers (3.1 IP, 7 ER). The St. Louis offense isn’t exactly striking fear into the hearts of pitchers these days and has incurred the 6th-highest K% over the last two weeks in baseball (24.1%). These two bets by themselves don’t provide great odds (Skubal -140, Toussaint -160), but parlayed at +178 presents a great payout for what should be a relatively easy strikeout over.
Pick: Skubal/Toussaint over 4.5 Ks (+178 DK)
Kyle Stanzel Overall Record: 39-42-2
Net Money (Assuming all wagers are $100): +$302.70
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)