May 11, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; Tampa Bay Rays left fielder Randy Arozarena (56) and center fielder Manuel Margot (13) and right fielder Josh Lowe (15) celebrate after defeating the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Gallery Sports’ Betting Picks for May 13, 2023
After a 2-1 Friday to improve to 66-62 on MLB picks this season, Dalton Brown is back with three angles for Saturday’s MLB slate.
12:05 p.m. CT: Tampa Bay Rays at New York Yankees
The Pick: Rays moneyline (-125) at WynnBet
Tampa Bay plays its third in a four-game series at Yankee Stadium on Saturday afternoon, and I think it prevails over New York and starter Nestor Cortes behind lefty Shane McClanahan. Cortes, a lefty, has not managed to replicate his impressive 2022 so far in 2023. Cortes has allowed two or more earned runs in all but one start, and has been allowing too much traffic on the bases recently – over 20.2 innings in his last four starts, opponents have scored 19 runs on 20 hits and nine walks. Tampa Bay’s wRC+ against lefties is more than 20 points higher than any other team’s wRC+ against either righties or lefties, too. The Rays are likely to cause Nestor major problems on Saturday, and Shane McClanahan is as steady as they come on the mound for Tampa Bay. McClanahan has allowed more than one earned run just three times over eight starts, and has yet to allow more than two earned runs in a start this season. New York ranks merely 15th against left-handed pitchers in wRC+ this season, and there is not a discernible advantage for either bullpen here – but on starting pitching value alone, Tampa Bay at minus-125 is too cheap on the moneyline here.
3:07 p.m. CT: Texas Rangers at Oakland Athletics
The Pick: Rangers team total over 4.5 (-120) at Caesars
If you read this column on any consistent basis, you’ve probably learned by now that the Oakland A’s struggle quite a bit with keeping their opponents off of the scoreboard. Even in Friday night’s win, Oakland allowed seven runs to the Texas Rangers before winning with a late rally. Put simply, Saturday will not be an exception to that rule either. JP Sears pitches for the A’s, and while Sears has looked promising at times, he’s a high-variance pitcher that has been hit around more often than not. His 4.89 xERA is nothing to write home about, and his left-handedness is a serious problem against the Rangers (third in MLB in wRC+ vs. lefties at 125). Sears has allowed five or more runs in two of his last three starts, and allowed five (four earned) against the Rangers on April 21 already. The bullpen that follows him for the A’s is an abomination, with a 7.11 ERA since April 22 and 6.79 since the season began. Just like the Yankees did during the week, the Rangers’ offense should eat well all weekend.
7:10 p.m. CT: San Francisco Giants at Arizona Diamondbacks
The Pick: UNDER 8.5 (-110) at FanDuel
Two of the better pitchers in the National League will square off when the Diamondbacks and Giants play their third in a four-game series Saturday night in Phoenix, with Anthony DeSclafani (San Francisco) opposing Zac Gallen (Arizona). DeSclafani has allowed two or fewer runs in five of his seven starts this season, and is pitching deeper into games of late (seven or more innings in both starts since May 1). He’s been especially effective away from Oracle Park, where he boasts a 0.87 ERA compared to 4.44 at home. For his career, DeSclafani is 4-2 with a 2.95 ERA against Arizona including 2-1 with a 2.57 ERA at Chase Field. Zac Gallen, an early contender for the Cy Young Award in the NL, has allowed a run or less in five of his last six starts. His WHIP is other-worldly at 0.85, and he’s struck out 64 batters to just six walks in 2023. Both of these starters ought to carry a low-scoring game deep into the night, at which point we are just hoping two mediocre bullpens can take us to the finish line. I make this line closer to 7.5, so I am more than comfortable taking that risk.