The crack of the bat. The pop of the glove. The fresh chalk on the field. Baseball is back!
Yes, it’s Opening Day which means so too are MLB player prop odds. Baseball is great because there are so many options to bet on. Strikeouts, hits, total bases, stolen bases, walks. It’s never-ending.
So I dug through the MLB odds and found you three "home runs" in the player prop market for Opening Day.
Today, we look at one of our favorite fades from last season, Patrick Corbin. Hunter Greene will rack up the strikeouts against the Pirates. And is Javy Baez still waving at sliders like it’s going out of style?
Here are my best MLB player prop picks for Thursday, March 30.
MLB props for March 30
Picks made on 3/30/2023 at 12:25 p.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.
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Best MLB bets today
The odds widgets below represent the best odds currently available for each betting market at regulated sportsbooks.
Prop bet #1: Hit parade
It wouldn’t be Opening Day if we didn’t fade Patrick Corbin. The Washington Nationals money pit, I mean starter, could be in big trouble when he takes the ball today against Ronald Acuna Jr., Matt Olson, and the rest of the Atlanta Braves.
Corbin signed a big deal with the Nationals heading into 2019 and helped the team win the World Series that year. But since then, Corbin has fallen off a cliff, and last season it felt like he hit rock bottom.
No pitcher in the big leagues gave up more hits and earned runs in 2022 than Corbin. The left-hander pitched to a 6.41 ERA and a .304 expected batting average. Those numbers ranked in the Bottom 1% of the league.
The Braves were one of the teams that gave him the most problems, which isn’t surprising considering their lineup. Last season they ranked third in OPS and fourth in batting average when facing southpaws, and they feasted on Corbin.
Atlanta got to Corbin for an ugly 9.42 ERA, hitting for a .391 average in four starts against him last season. In one of those starts, he was pulled after 2/3 of an inning due to an injury, but in the other three, he allowed eight, nine, and eight hits.
Corbin’s hits allowed prop is sitting at 5.5. He went Over that number in his three full starts against the Braves, and in 21 of his 31 starts last season. You know we’re betting the Over on Opening Day.
Patrick Corbin Prop: Over 5.5 hits allowed (+110)
Prop bet #2: Bucs bamboozled
There’s nothing like starting the new MLB season than with a strikeout prop, and Opening Day means there are a ton of big-name starters on the mound. But I’m focusing on an up-and-coming ace for the Cincinnati Reds, Hunter Greene, who takes the ball today against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Greene’s rookie season was cut short due to an injury, but the 23-year-old right-hander flashed his dynamic arm over his 24 starts last season. Greene has an electric fastball that averaged 98.9 miles per hour, and mixed with a devastating slider, he quickly became a strikeout artist.
Greene struck out 10.6 batters per nine innings last season and ranked in the 91st percentile in strikeout rate. And he’ll have a chance to keep racking up the Ks today against the Pirates.
The Buccos went down swinging a lot last season. In fact, they had the highest strikeout rate in baseball in 2022, and the third-highest K-rate when facing right-handed pitching. Pittsburgh added some veteran bats like franchise icon Andrew McCutchen to mentor its young core, but that move won’t be enough to improve this lineup too much.
The guys who did face Greene last season looked overmatched. In two starts against the Pirates, Greene racked up 19 strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings pitched, notching at least nine Ks in each.
Greene’s strikeout total for this one is set at 7.5. He not only went over that number in both games against Pittsburgh, but in each of his final five starts of the 2022 season. He starts the season by punching out a lot of Pirates.
Hunter Greene Prop: Over 7.5 strikeouts (+106)
Prop bet #3: Baez blanked
The Detroit Tigers were one of the worst-hitting teams in baseball last season, and after this offseason, it doesn’t look like that will change in 2023.
The Tigers ranked dead-last in scoring, plating just 3.4 runs per game while ranking 25th in batting average and 29th in OPS. Part of the reason for that is that Javier Baez's first season in Detroit did not go well.
The Tigers signed the shortstop to a big deal last offseason, and he managed just 17 home runs and a .238 average. Baez has had the same problem for much of his career. While he has some pop, there is a big hole in his swing.
Baez ranked in the Bottom 4% of the MLB when it came to whiff percentage and chase rate last season. He also ranked in the 26th percentile in K-rate. He’s had a particular problem with waving at sliders.
Now, Baez had an interesting offseason. He performed well for Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic, but struggled in Spring Training, hitting just .167. And he gets a tough matchup on Opening Day.
Today, he goes up against Tampa Bay Rays’ ace Shane McClanahan. While Baez does a better job against lefties, McClanahan isn’t your average southpaw.
McClanahan is coming off a season where he pitched to a 2.54 ERA, a 0.93 WHIP, limited opponents to a .194 batting average, and stuck out 10.5 batters per nine innings. He also faced Baez six times, giving up just one hit and striking him out once. McClanahan will then hand the ball off to another excellent Rays bullpen.
Baez is the ultimate boom-or-bust player. I’m betting on bust today against the Rays and taking the Under on his hits prop.
Javier Baez Prop: Under 0.5 hits (+160)