Tuley’s Takes: Monday MLB Best Bets 7/31

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Sunday Best Bets results

Sunday was another day mostly spent out of the Tuley’s Takes home office, playing in a horse racing tournament at the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip.

 

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After being in 6th place most of the day on Saturday and feeling I missed some opportunities to move up the leaderboard in the National Horseplayers Championship qualifying event, Sunday was equally frustrating as I felt I did a great job of handicapping but just couldn’t get to the winner’s circle. I had three second-place finishers and six third-place finishers (points are earned by Win and Place payoffs), plus a 28-1 horse that lost by a head but finished fourth.
Still, it was a blast as I was able to share the races with several contest players that I’ve interviewed and met over the years from my days covering the NHC finals and other handicapping tournaments from my days at the Daily Racing Form. Back in the day, you had to go to a racetrack or casino to play in a tournament like this, so it was a true “tour” like golf or tennis, as opposed to nowadays with 90% of tournaments held online.
At least we broke even on our MLB bets on Sunday, though we officially went 0-1-1 with our plays in this column.
I lost my top play on the Cubs First 5 Innings at the Cardinals as the Cubbies, on an 8-game winning streak, suddenly couldn’t hit Stephen Mat, who came into the game with a 1-7 record. We pushed on the Tigers First 5 +130 at the Marlins despite the Tigers jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the top of the 3rd inning (First 3 woulda been the way to go there!) as the Marlins rallied with 4 runs in the bottom of the 5th to tie it 4-4.
Regular “Tuley’s Takes” reader, David Allison (on Twitter @DavidAI61763893) questioned why I didn’t have an “anti-swagger” play against the Red Sox on Sunday after their 5-game winning streak was snapped on Saturday. I replied: “There wasn’t a BOS-SF line when I filed overnight, but you’re right, I should have listed it as a play like I did yesterday w/ White Sox when I posted First 5 -105 after finding 1 book w/ a line as they went off around +120. Giants F5 -105 right now.”
So, hopefully other readers picked up on that as well.
As it is, our official Best Bets on the First 5 plays went 0-1-1 for a net loss of $100 based on $100 flat bets, according to the VSiN Pro Picks page, as we dropped to a dismal 20-34-5 in July for a net loss of $1,074.76.
Let’s try to get back on the winning track with two more F5 plays on Monday’s full 15-game card as we mercifully end the month of July.

Monday MLB Best Bets

Reds First 5 Innings +105 at Cubs: The Cubs are now in a big “anti-swagger” role after having their 8-game winning streak snapped on Sunday. The Reds are also coming to Wrigley after a confidence-building 9-0 rout of the Dodgers as they hold a half-game lead over the Brewers in the NL Central with the Cubs 4 games back. We’re not totally thrilled with fading Chicago’s Marcus Stroman (10-7, 3.51 ERA), but at least we get Cincinnati rookie Andrew Abbott (6-2, 1.90 ERA).

Orioles First 5 Innings +130 at Blue Jays: I also not overly thrilled with taking a team coming off a Sunday Night Baseball game and having to travel to over the border to Canada, but the AL East-leading Orioles are playing well and coming off a 9-3 win over the Yankees to maintain a 1.5-game lead over the Rays. We’ll take Kyle Gibson (9-6, 4.68 ERA) vs. Chris Bassitt (10-5, 3.91 ERA) as the Blue Jays are also in a “mini-anti-swagger” spot after having a 3-game winning streak snapped by the Angels on Sunday.