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Top MLB Betting Picks for Today's Slate (5/18/19)

Welcome back RotoBallers! Saturday May 18th sees a full 15 game slate spread across an afternoon and evening session. There are some interesting games on both slates with the Rockies @ Phillies the headliner this afternoon, and games between the Red Sox and Astros, Brewers and Braves, and Cubs and Nationals likely drawing most national attention.

In this article, we will slice through the numbers and pick out our top recommended betting picks for today's slate. Feel free to hit me up on Twitter @benrolfe15 if you have any questions.

So without any further delay, below are my picks for Saturday March 18th. Good luck!

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Oakland Athletics @ Detroit Tigers (+1.5)

O/U: 9

This is a fascinating game, which recent history would suggest should go over. However, Matt Boyd is the best Detroit pitcher to have taken the mound against the Athletics so far. Daniel Mengden on the other side does give me reason for pause, but the Tigers lineup has really struggled this season, so betting against them scoring too many runs feels a safe angle. Additionally, in games where the total is set at nine, the Athletics have seen the under hit 10-of-17 times and the Tigers 14-of-22 times.

Recommended Picks: Total Under 9


Baltimore Orioles @ Cleveland Indians (-1.5)

O/U: 9.5

There is nothing hugely special about this game. The Indians are the better team but they are as cold as ice at the plate this season. Additionally, John Means has been solid for the Orioles, and there should be no reason this is the game he suddenly implodes. This season the Orioles have averaged 3.4 runs per game on the road, with the Indians scoring just 4.05 at home on average. As a kicker, Orioles games at this line go under 61% of the time, and Indians games go under 67% of the time.

Recommended Picks: Total Under 9.5


Chicago Cubs @ Washington Nationals (-1.5)

O/U: 8.5

This is going to be a fascinating game, with two good pitchers on the mound. Friday's game got out of control with the Cubs chasing Max Scherzer from the game and then taking the Nationals for 14 runs. In Saturday's game, Jon Lester and his sub-two ERA should give the Cubs every chance of having success. The numbers are also on their side as the Nationals cover the spread just 23% of the time as favorites. Additionally, the success that Lester has had makes the Cubs a good pick as underdogs for the five-innings money line pick.

The way these two offenses went after the bullpens yesterday also puts the over in play. Cubs games go over 62.5% of the time when the total is set at 8-or-8.5, and in Nationals home games the over has hit 75% of the time on those totals.

Recommended Picks: Cubs 5-inning ML, Cubs + 1.5 & Total Over 8.5


Kansas City Royals @ Los Angeles Angels (-1.5)

O/U: 9

This is more of a hunch than a reliance on the numbers. If you trusted the numbers then all of the evidence suggests this game should go under. However, looking beyond the numbers and who the pitchers are on the mound in this matchup makes me desperate to take the over, both for the game and over the first five innings (5-innings O/U: 5). For the Angels, Griffin Canning has struggled so far allowing a total of nine earned runs in 14 1/3 innings this season. As for Jakob Junis, he has allowed nine earned runs in the last 9 2/3 innings, and currently owns a 5.77 ERA. If you want to take the bullpens out of this then just take the 5-innings line, but there is a chance the two starters account for the best part of those nine runs needed for the total.

Recommended Picks: 5-Innings Total Over 5 & Total Over 9


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