I caught a nice win on Tuesday, when the Oakland Athletics secured a home win and provided you with a sweet +110 price. That’s the type of value I try to get you and while it doesn’t always work out, landing those solid value picks is how you can win consistently.
I think you can get more of it on Thursday, but perhaps not quite as tasty as +110. There are certainly some MLB upset picks to at least consider, but on a small seven-game slate, you should be careful not to reach too much.
The Rays (+154) to beat the Yankees again is certainly a tall order, while backing teams like the Tigers (+141), Royals (+120) or Padres (+117) is no way to sweat through a night of baseball.
Instead, I’ll go with Atlanta, who will be at home and offer a solid price (-102 at GTbets) as a mild underdog.
I said it more than once over the last couple of days; anytime you can get a viable home team as an underdog, you need to strongly look at that bet. I think the Braves are a very tempting play on Thursday and there’s plenty of reason why:
Colorado Rockies (-108) vs. Atlanta Braves (-102) Total: 8.5 (+100/-114)
Obviously, this is a tight line and no matter which way you bet (if you win), you’re getting solid value. However, the Rockies are traditionally not a very reliable offensive team on the road and the Braves (34-24) tend to get the job done at their home ballpark.
Both offenses are capable of blowing up, though, regardless of matchup.
There’s a chance Ronald Acuna (elbow) could sit this one out after exiting last night’s game, but no matter what, bettors are looking at two very capable lineups. Despite some quality pitching toeing the rubber, I really like the Over at a cool +100 price.
Either one of these teams can mash their way to nine runs all on their own, so that’s a bet I like no matter what happens.
I do respect the pitching here – to a degree.
Jon Gray is arguably Colorado’s top ace and considering the guy can spin a beautiful yarn at Coors Field of all places, you have to like his chances at SunTrust Park, which has increasingly become more pitcher-friendly.
That being said, Gray does have some serious issues with viable left-handed hitting. That’s where 11 of his 14 home runs allowed have come in 2018 after all.
I don’t know if that alone has Gray being a marked man, but he wasn’t spot on in his most recent outing (4 earned runs, 8 hits allowed) and he’s had some issues (4-4, 4.88 ERA, 7 HR) on the road.
Normally I’d point to the park upgrade and his overall recent form, but Gray doesn’t have an easy matchup in the Braves. Freddie Freeman and Ozzie Albies stand out as problematic lefties he’s going to have to work his way around, while Ender Inciarte, Johan Camargo and Nick Markakis have all been a handful from the left side.
I don’t exactly trust Julio Teheran, either. He has just as much trouble against the left side of the plate as Gray, while he’s been an equal opportunity sad sack to both sides of the plate (22 HR allowed) when it comes to dingers.
In the end, I really like two bets for Thursday night.
I trust these offenses to rip it up in this spot and I very much prefer Atlanta at their home base at this price. The value isn’t staggering, but at +100 and -102, you surely could do a lot worse on a pretty suspect MLB betting slate.