Welcome back for another Sunday. As is the case on most Sundays, we have a full slate of day games and one game, the St. Louis Cardinals at the Chicago Cubs, on Sunday Night Baseball. If you look around the league, only two divisions have a positive run differential. The AL East is at +95, and the NL West is at +91, while every other division is at -18 or more. The NL Central, at -82, is the lowest. If you had to guess blindly, those are probably the divisions you would pick as the best and the worst. But would you have guessed the disparity was that substantial? That’s something to keep in mind when making picks going forward, especially when it comes to recent performances and strength of schedule.
Here are my top betting plays for Sunday, June 13. Have questions or want to talk baseball or betting? Feel free to reach out on Twitter @mikeMaher.
View the best player prop bets for today’s slate with our MLB Prop Bet Cheat Sheet >>
Cincinnati Reds ML (-154)
At an abysmal 5-26, the Colorado Rockies have the worst road record of any team in baseball. Sunday is also their last game of a seven-game road trip before they head home for a seven-game homestand. I like to target teams on the last day of a long road trip ahead of a long homestand for obvious reasons, and this one has the added bonus of being the worst road team in the game. The Rockies are sending Antonio Senzatela and his 4.62 ERA and 42 strikeouts over 64 1/3 innings against the Reds’ Top 5 offense, while the Reds are countering with Tony Santillan, who will be making his first big league start.
It can be risky betting on a rookie pitcher making his debut, but Santillan has a 2.51 ERA and 45 strikeouts over 32 1/3 innings in Triple-A this season. We don’t have any statistics on him from 2020 because of the lost minor league season, but he’s a former second-round pick striking out more than 12 batters per nine innings. This one would be scarier if the game were at Coors Field, but the Reds are home and should be able to win this one even if Santillan disappoints.
Houston Astros over Minnesota Twins: -1.5 runs (+114)
The Astros have the best offense in baseball in the month of June, with a team wOBA of .370 to go with a team average of .289 and a team slugging percentage of .501. For the Twins, starting pitcher Michael Pineda has hit a rough patch after a strong start to the season. He entered June with an ERA of 2.62, but that number is up to 3.46 after allowing seven earned runs over 7 1/3 innings over his last two starts. That number more closely aligns with his expected numbers, as his FIP, xFIP, SIERA, and xERA are all above 4.00. The Astros are countering with Framber Valdez, who has looked excellent since being activated from the injured list. Through three starts, Valdez has allowed just three earned runs while striking out 22 over 18 1/3 innings for a 1.47 ERA and 0.87 WHIP. If you give up the 1.5 runs in this one, which I’m willing to do, you can get this for +114 over at FanDuel Sportsbook.
Cardinals-Cubs OVER 9.5 Runs (-105)
The Cardinals and Cubs are the night game on Sunday, and this one features two struggling pitchers. I was hoping to find this over/under at one of the sportsbooks at 8.5 while scrolling through all of the odds on BettingPros, but they all have it at 9.5. That’s fine. I’m still going with it. Cardinals starter Carlos Martinez has allowed 15 earned runs over his last 4 2/3 innings. That is not a typo. He allowed 10 earned runs while recording just two outs in a start against the Dodgers and then allowed five earned runs over four innings in a loss to Cleveland. For the Cubs, Zach Davies is coming off a strong performance in a win over the Padres, but he has a 4.45 ERA with expected numbers that suggest that number should be about a run higher. I took a look at Davies in a Statcast Review piece for FantasyPros a couple of weeks ago, and his xwOBA, xERA, xBA, and K% were 3rd, 3rd, 2nd, and 1st percentile, respectively. This one has the potential for a blowup from either starting pitcher.
That’s it for today. Have questions or want to talk baseball or betting? Feel free to reach out on Twitter @mikeMaher.
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Mike Maher is an editor and featured writer at FantasyPros and BettingPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive, follow him on Twitter @MikeMaher, and visit his Philadelphia Eagles blog, The Birds Blitz.
The post Top 3 MLB Betting Picks for Sunday, June 13 (2021) appeared first on BettingPros.