Well, it’s July. Congratulations. We made it. Seeing as this is my first betting article since the calendar flipped, it seems like a decent time to assess our results so far this season. After a 3-0 night last Thursday, we’re now sitting at 38-28 (+11.8u) on article plays for 2023 as a whole. Not too shabby, if I can pat myself on the back.
But today is a new day and tonight is a new slate. Let’s dive in.
As it did on Wednesday, this total simply feels high. While the Rangers are arguably the league’s most potent lineup, it’s worth considering that a majority of that success has come in Texas, where the team sports a 136 wRC+. That figure falls to a far more pedestrian 106 wRC+ when the Rangers are playing on the road. Speaking of location, despite the usually offense-friendly confines of Fenway, the Red Sox have hit the under in four straight home games and six of their last seven within the split. In general, that makes sense, as Boston has struggled to a microscopic 69 wRC+ as a team the past two weeks. Yuck.
Let’s not bury the lede, either. A huge part of believing in the under in this spot is tied to the right arm of Nathan Eovaldi — making his return to Boston after not being re-signed this offseason. Eovaldi has been everything Texas could’ve possibly dreamed for in the winter, posting a pristine 1.81 ERA across his last 12 outings. Eovaldi will be opposed by Kutter Crawford, who has been decent in 2023, pitching to a 3.92 ERA and a 3.34 xERA over 57.1 innings. Heck, if you remove a disastrous first start of the season against the Pirates, Crawford owns a 3.04 ERA. Any way you slice it, he’s certainly not a gas can.
There have been few bets this season safer than fading the Royals on the run line. Kansas City is just 30-57 on the run line in 2023 — a cover rate of only 34.5%. To put that in perspective, no other team is covering at a clip lower than 40%, so the Royals are on their own island. In their own stratosphere, if you will. Of Kansas City’s last 13 losses, 12 have been by at least two runs. The Royals are also a stunning 1-15 in games started by Jordan Lyles, with 13 of those defeats coming by at least two runs. You’re beginning to see a pattern, right?
Don’t feel bad for Lyles, though. He comes by the lack of positive results honestly. Among the 63 qualified pitchers in baseball, Lyles’ 6.68 ERA is the highest, despite a .251 BABIP that would suggest he’s somehow getting a little lucky. The veteran RHP possesses an 11th percentile opponent expected slugging percentage (.484) and a 13th percentile barrel rate (11.1%). By any metric you can think of, he’s been bad. Even the Guardians should be able to produce some crooked numbers on Thursday evening.
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All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
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