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MLB Best Bets: Baseball Picks, Predictions, Odds to Consider on DraftKings Sportsbook for May 18

Kenny Ducey gives his best bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for Tuesday’s MLB betting card.

MLB: San Francisco Giants at Pittsburgh Pirates Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday! We’ve got our first fully-loaded slate on the diamond this week, complete with some exciting divisional rivalries across the league. I’ve got my eye on quite a few bets today, but have narrowed it down to three. With that in mind, here are my best MLB bets to consider on DraftKings Sportsbook.

San Francisco Giants vs. Cincinnati Reds

Giants ML (+102)

We’re going back to a tried and true money-making strategy: Fading Luis Castillo. The once-exciting fireballer has struggled to a 7.71 ERA this year, making his dominance feel like a decade ago. His velocity is down across the board, which has led to fewer whiffs and fewer punchouts (he’s struck out a Kyle Hendricks-esque 16.3% of hitters).

While his xERA and xFIP are about three runs lower than his real-life ERA — signaling to many a turnaround is coming — I don’t buy it with these swing-and-miss numbers, and a hard-hit rate that continues to rise. That’s all without touching on the return of his home run demons, which should be out in full force with the team that’s hit the third-most in the league and now gets to play in the Great American Smallpark.

The Giants should beat up on Castillo, and Anthony DeSclafani should continue to shove against a Reds team that has gone cold at the plate.

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Washington Nationals vs. Chicago Cubs

Over 8.5 (-114)

One thing that’s been consistent about the Cubs is the fact that they’ve hit lefties, posting a 109 wRC+ against southpaws. One thing that’s been consistent about Patrick Corbin is that he’s been rocked all season long to the tune of a .396 xwOBA, and has struck out just 18.5% of the batters he’s faced. When he hasn’t been allowing hard contact, he’s been walking guys, walking three or more in four separate starts.

Now, Corbin’s gotten better of late, but digging deeper, the lineups he’s shut down had either been in a rut or were simply bad, like the Marlins. The Cubs have turned things around at the plate after a rough start, and have proven capable of getting five or more runs on the board almost every night. They should do their part to get us to this number.

On the other side of the coin, Zach Davies continues to allow baserunners at an alarming rate, but has been able to wiggle out of trouble in his last two outings against the Pirates and Indians, two of the worst offenses in baseball. Washington ranks ninth in wRC+ over the last two weeks and should represent a much tougher task for the right-hander, who ranks in the bottom 6% of the league in expected wOBA, expected ERA, strikeout rate and fastball velocity.

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Houston Astros vs. Oakland Athletics

Astros ML (-113)

I liked the Astros last night as the underdogs in this game, and I still like them up to -120 here. Cristian Javier has run into some trouble against three surging offenses in the Rays, Blue Jays and Ranger; but tonight he’ll encounter an A’s lineup that he’s not only held in check twice already this season, but has been hitting much worse than the last time he saw them. Their biggest contributors lately have been Elvis Andrus and Mitch Moreland, with the big bats having been relatively quiet.

Sean Manaea, on the other hand, does have a nice 3.50 career ERA against the Astros, but this is the third-best team in baseball against lefties at the moment, and they’ve struck out just 17.7% of the time within the split. Manaea is coming off a brutal outing against a similarly-gifted offense in the Red Sox, and his fate could very well be the same here.

Javier’s proven over his two seasons that he’s a good pitcher, and should see a bit of positive regression in a good matchup here. The Astros, on the other hand, should rake against Manaea just as they did earlier this season. They have a clear edge for me.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jetsfan196) and I may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.