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MLB Picks Today: Baseball Best Bets, Predictions, Odds on DraftKings Sportsbook for August 15

Matt LaMarca gives his best bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for Tuesday’s MLB betting card.

Tuesday is always a great day for baseball. All 30 teams are scheduled to take the field, with each game slated to start at 6:40 p.m. or later.

Let’s dive into three of my favorite wagers on DraftKings Sportsbook for Tuesday’s slate.

Houston Astros at Miami Marlins

The Pick: Marlins Moneyline (+105)

The Astros have had another strong season, but they haven’t been quite as potent as they have been in years past. They trail the Rangers by 3.5 games in the AL West standings, and they’re just 2.0 games above the Blue Jays for the final Wild Card spot. In other words, their spot in the playoffs is far from guaranteed at this point.

One of the biggest differences between this year’s squad and last year’s is Cristian Javier. Javier broke out as a superstar in 2022, posting a 2.54 ERA and 2.43 xERA while striking out just under 12 batters per nine innings. If not for the fact that he started the season in the bullpen, he would’ve been in the thick of the AL Cy Young race.

However, he’s regressed massively in 2023. His ERA is up to 4.36, while his xERA has crept to 4.68. His K/9 has also fallen off a cliff, dipping to just 8.41. Things have been even worse for Javier over the second half of the year, and he’s handed out nearly 5.5 walks per nine innings since the All-Star break.

The Marlins are not the same cellar-dwellers that they’ve been in the past, so listing the Astros as road favorites is based more on reputation than results. I’ll take my chances with the Fish.

Cleveland Guardians at Cincinnati Reds:

The Pick: Reds Moneyline (-108)

It’s Graham Ashcraft Day. Ashcraft has become a personal favorite of mine in the betting market. He started the year by posting some of the worst numbers in baseball, pitching to a dreadful 6.28 ERA in the first half of the season. However, the pitch modeling numbers absolutely love his stuff. In fact, no qualified pitcher has a better Stuff+ mark than Ashcraft for the year. The rest of the top six is comprised of superstars like Spencer Strider, Corbin Burnes, Gerrit Cole, and Shohei Ohtani, which goes to show just how filthy Ashcraft has been.

The good news is his traditional numbers have finally started to reflect his pitch modeling stats. He owns a sparkling 2.11 ERA since the All-Star break, and he’s allowed two earned runs or fewer in seven of his past eight outings.

He should be able to keep the Guardians’ bats at bay on Tuesday. Their offense has struggled against right-handers all season, ranking just 20th in wRC+. They’re also dead last in ISO, so they’re not particularly well-equipped to take advantage of the fact that the Great American Ball Park is a home run hitter’s paradise.

The Reds’ offense is significantly better, ranking seventh in the league in runs per game. They’ll have their hands full with Logan Allen, but Allen has shown signs of slippage over the second half of the year. His FIP has decreased to 4.93 since the All-Star break, and he’s averaged nearly 1.5 fewer strikeouts per nine innings over that time frame.

Oakland Athletics at St. Louis Cardinals:

The Pick: Athletics Moneyline (+190)

Let’s wrap things up with a long shot. There has been plenty of ink spilled about the A’s disastrous season, and they deserve every ounce of criticism that they’ve received. They’ve gone just 33-86 this season, good for a 27.7% win percentage. The 1962 Mets hold the record for most losses in a season at 120, and the A’s are a serious threat to break that mark.

Still, I think the A’s are being undervalued on Tuesday.

The Cardinals obviously aren’t as bad as the A’s, but they might be more disappointing. They have the second-worst record in the National League, despite the fact that they were expected to contend for the NL Central crown. What has this team done to deserve being -230 against anyone?

That’s particularly true with Dakota Hudson on the mound. Hudson has been one of the worst starters in baseball dating back to 2022, pitching to a 5.01 xERA. He’s a low strikeout pitcher who also struggles with control, which is a rough combination. Hudson has started three games for the Cardinals after spending most of the year in the bullpen, and he owns a 5.74 FIP in those outings.

Spenser Watkins isn’t any better, and he’ll make his first start for the A’s after spending time in the Orioles and Astros minor league systems in 2023. However, I don’t think he’s ultimately much worse than Hudson, and one of those pitchers is priced at -230 and the other is priced at +190. I’ll roll the dice on the long shot every time in that situation.

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All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.

I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is mlamarca) 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.