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MLB Best Bets – Player Props for Tuesday, 5/3

Yesterday’s player props went 4-0, so it is only right that we repeat that performance again today. There is a full 15-game slate plus an additional makeup game, so we have 16 games to dive into. What are our MLB best bets today? Let’s dive in.

MLB Best Bets – Best Player Props

Logan Webb Over 5.5 Strikeouts +120 (DraftKings)

This number makes sense to me, but the fact that it is +120 does not. Webb has gone over this number in every start but one this season, including in games against teams with lower strikeout percentages against righties than Houston, like the Mets and Cardinals. Webb has a higher K/9 on the road this season, and given the form he is currently in, he should go over this number. Webb is in the 79th percentile for K%, the 87th for chase rate, and the 49th for whiff%. Houston does not whiff often, but they are above the league average in chase rate. The Astros projected lineup has six players who chase more than the league average and six players who strike out more than the MLB average. Give me the plus money on Webb.

Clarke Schmidt Over 4.5 Strikeouts -116 (FanDuel)

Clarke Schmidt may allow a lot of hard-hit balls with high exit velocities and barrel percentages, but one thing he does well is strike people out. Schmidt is in the 70th percentile in K rate and the 78th in chase rate. He has gone over this number in four of six starts this year, and one of the starts he did not clear this number was against this same Cleveland team. However, digging into the stats, Schmidt is great at inducing chases, and the Guardians, while not a strikeout-heavy team, are a chase-heavy team. Normally I like to fade the pitcher seeing a team for the second time, but in this case, I think there is value in backing Schmidt to rack up five Ks. Cleveland will probably look to jump on him early, and Schmidt can pull the chair out from under them with his mix of off-speed pitches.

Shohei Ohtani Over 6.5 Strikeouts -112 (BetRivers)

The Cardinals are a team that does not strike out a ton, but asking Ohtani for just seven strikeouts seems a little disrespectful, and I will gladly dive in. Ohtani has gone over this number in all but two starts this year – one of those starts was postponed due to rain, and one was against the Nationals, who have a slightly lower K rate against righties than the Cardinals. No one on this Cardinals’ roster has ever seen Ohtani pitch in the Majors, and I believe the edge lies with the pitcher in these scenarios. The Cardinals can watch all the tape they want on Ohtani, it will not replicate his 87th-percentile extension, his 71st fastball velocity, and his 53rd fastball spin. I’m taking this and not looking back.

Charlie Blackmon to hit a Home Run +630 (FanDuel)

Not many batters own opposing starting pitching as much as Blackmon owns Eric Lauer. In 24 at-bats against Lauer, Blackmon is 12-24 with three doubles and two home runs. Lauer has not been great this season. He is in the 8th percentile in average exit velocity, the 15th in hard hit percentage, the 14th in xERA/xwOBA, the 19th in barrel%, and the 13th in xSLG. He has to pitch at Coors Field tonight. Blackmon has just two home runs this season, but he is in a prime spot to get 2-3 at-bats against a pitcher he owns at altitude. This is certainly worth a sprinkle.

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