YRFI and NRFI MLB Best Bets for Saturday, August 5

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Best Bets on Today’s MLB YRFI and NRFI Markets

I started the week with mixed results going 1-1 with Friday’s best bets. Adam Wainwright continued to be the leader in the clubhouse for YRFI pitcher of the year while Jesus Luzardo got touched up a bit in Texas. The Marlins also scored on Jordan Montgomery in the first inning thanks to an RBI from the newly acquired Josh Bell. I think it’s important to make a manual adjustment on Miami to account for Bell being added to the mix and Jazz Chisholm returning from injury. The Marlins lineup is no longer an automatic NRFI and might actually present a good buying opportunity on the YRFI. Wild times indeed.

 

Keep reading to find out my best bets for Saturday, August 5th. I recommend two units for each. All odds are via DraftKings but be sure to shop around for the best line as prices vary dramatically in this market. 

Best Bets Season Record: 43-37 (53.8%) +0.84u +0.5% ROI

 

Kansas City Royals at Philadelphia Phillies

Rookie Alec Marsh returns to the rotation after pitching a clean inning of relief against the Mets earlier this week. Prior to that, he labored through the first five starts of his career going 2-3 to the NRFI and pitching to a 6.75 ERA. Perhaps he found something during his time in the bullpen, but I think the Phillies came out with a little urgency after losing last night’s game. It’s hard to explain Philadelphia’s early struggles, especially at home, where they have posted a subpar 26.5% scoring rate (13-for-49). For perspective, the MLB average for home teams is around 33% this season. With the firepower Philly has at the top, I expect them to have some positive scoring regression in the first inning down the stretch. 

Christopher Sanchez has put together a solid 7-1 NRFI season with a 2.28 xFIP and .128 batting average against in the first inning. On the surface, that looks like it favors the NRFI, but when I dug deeper, I learned that Sanchez is in the 40th percentile or lower in several key categories including average exit velocity (39th) barrel rate (30th) whiff rate (23rd) chase rate (29th) and fastball velocity (23rd). The Royals have also handled lefties pretty well, especially Bobby Witt Jr. whose OPS is over 100 points higher against southpaws. 

I was able to find plenty of -120 available in the overnight market and would feel comfortable playing this up to -130 but not at -140 which was the price being offered by DraftKings at the time of publication. Always shop around.

Here’s how the starting pitchers have fared against the projected top of each lineup:

Alec Marsh vs.:

Kyle Schwarber (never faced)

Alec Bohm (never faced)

Bryce Harper (never faced)

Nick Castellanos (never faced)

 

Christopher Sanchez vs.:

Maikel Garcia (never faced)

Bobby Witt Jr. (never faced)

Salvador Perez (never faced)

MJ Melendez (never faced)

Bet: Yes Run First Inning (-140)

 

Colorado Rockies at St. Louis Cardinals

Even after failing to score last night, St. Louis has still pushed across an early run in 39% (22-for-56) of their home games this season. Ty Blach has pitched surprisingly well since being moved into the rotation last month, including five scoreless innings in his last start against the Athletics. I think Blach will eventually revert back to the pitcher who had a 6.75 ERA in seven prior bullpen appearances.

Steven Matz is 10-5 to the NRFI this season and just 4-3 at home. His underlying data is about average, and he’s been susceptible to the long ball with three of 10 home runs allowed coming in the first inning. The Rockies lineup has been better than expected away from Coors Field this season with the third-highest first-inning scoring rate on the road at 35% (19-for-54) just behind the Diamondbacks and Astros. 

I was able to find plenty of -120 available in the overnight market and even a rogue -115. I would feel comfortable playing this up to -130 but not at -140 which was the price being offered by DraftKings at the time of publication. Shop around.

Here’s how the starting pitchers have fared against the projected top of each lineup:

Ty Blach vs.:

Dylan Carlson (never faced)

Paul Goldschmidt (3-for-10, HR, 2 Ks, BB)

Nolan Arenado (10-for-16, 3 2Bs, 3B)

Willson Contreras (3-for-9, 2B, 2 Ks, BB)

 

Steven Matz vs.:

Jurickson Profar (1-for-3)

Ezequiel Tovar (1-for-2, 2B)

Ryan McMahon (0-for-1, K, BB)

Brendan Rodgers (1-for-3, 2 Ks)

Bet: Yes Run First Inning (-140)

 

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