May 12, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Dalton Brown is back with three more picks for Wednesday’s MLB slate, including bets on two undervalued AL Cy Young contenders.
MLB record to date: 71-68
12:10 p.m. CT: Pittsburgh Pirates at Detroit Tigers
The Pick: Tigers First 5 Innings -0.5 (-110) at BetMGM
The Pittsburgh Pirates and Detroit Tigers have been heading in entirely different directions since the month of May began, and Detroit sends one of the hottest pitchers in baseball to the mound Wednesday in lefty Eduardo Rodriguez. Since May 1, the Tigers are 9-4 while the Pirates are 2-11 – and Pittsburgh has scored three or fewer runs in 12 of 13 games. Eduardo Rodriguez (4-2, 1.57 ERA) has been borderline unhittable this season and has allowed just one run over his last five combined starts (35.2 innings). Pirates starter Rich Hill (3-3, 4.35) has been due negative regression in a major way all season, and it has begun to arrive since the calendar turned to May. Hill’s 6.58 xERA is putrid, and he’ll take on a Tigers lineup that is much more comfortable against left-handed pitching than they are against righties. I’m expecting a quick 3-4 runs to knock Hill out early for a third consecutive start, setting the stage for E-Rod to cruise all afternoon.
5:35 p.m. CT: Anaheim Angels at Baltimore Orioles
The Pick: Orioles moneyline (-135) at WynnBet
The Baltimore Orioles and Anaheim Angels will play the third in a four-game set Wednesday night from Oriole Park at Camden Yards, and I’m backing the Orioles to take their second straight from the Angels. Baltimore is looking to win its fifth consecutive series at home, and I give starting pitcher Kyle Bradish the edge over Angels starter Griffin Canning. Bradish’s numbers (1-1, 4.56) are pedestrian as a whole this season, but he’s posted a 2.45 ERA so far in May and has consistently kept Baltimore in games outside of one ugly outing against the Red Sox in mid-April. Canning, meanwhile, has struggled on a consistent basis since joining the Angels rotation. His 5.25 xERA is a concern, and in May the righty has surrendered 10 earned runs over just 8.2 innings of work. While Bradish’s edge over Canning isn’t massive, this is more a play on each pitcher’s current form – but when the bullpens enter, the Orioles’ advantage becomes massive. Baltimore’s pen ranks second in baseball with a 2.71 ERA since April 22, while Anaheim’s ranks in the middle of the pack. I think we are getting the better team, better starter, and better bullpen here, so I am more than comfortable drinking the 35 cents worth of juice to bet the O’s. If you aren’t, I think Baltimore -1.5 (+140) is also a solid angle.
6:07 p.m. CT: New York Yankees at Toronto Blue Jays
The Pick: Yankees First 5 Innings moneyline (-112) at FanDuel
Don’t look now, but the New York Yankees are starting to hit – and with ace Gerrit Cole taking the mound on Wednesday, any price below minus-140 is too cheap to back the Bronx Bombers over the first five innings. Cole dominated Toronto in his only outing against the Blue Jays this season (5.2 IP, 0 ER on April 22), and is 6-2 against the Jays with a 3.48 ERA for his career. Chris Bassitt will oppose Cole for the Blue Jays, and while the righty has been the hottest pitcher in baseball over his last two starts (16 scoreless innings), his xERA of 4.69 tells the story of a pitcher due for significant negative regression. If not for those two starts, this line is nowhere near minus-112 for New York – and that is precisely the kind of market overreaction a smart bettor wants to pounce on. The Yankees’ offense has produced six or more runs in five straight games and nine of their last 10, a mind-numbingly hot streak that unsurprisingly coincides with players like Aaron Judge and Harrison Bader returning to the fold.