The MLB season is upon us, and with it, all the prop betting markets that we’ve come to love/hate. This article will try to find some of MLB’s best props and side bets for the day and does all the heavy lifting so you don’t have to. If there’s a line on it, we’ll look into it.
Today, we’re not getting bamboozled by Baddoo, stacking runs in Cincy and betting on a snoozefest in D.C. Check out our favorite MLB free prop bet picks and predictions for Saturday, April 17, 2021.
Today’s MLB props and picks
Akil Baddoo Over 0.5 total bases (-133)
If you haven’t been following Detroit Tiger Akil Baddoo’s assault on MLB pitching, you’re missing out. The 22-year-old former second-round pick is slashing an absurd .323./.333/.839 and single-handedly swept the Houston Astros in three games after finishing the series 5 for 11 with two homers and 13 total bases.
Baddoo has never played above High-A which makes the rookie’s debut showcase even more impressive. On Saturday, the Detroit outfielder will face Oakland lefty starter Cole Irvin. The southpaw has given up four runs in each of his two starts including two home runs in his most recent outing. Irvin pitches to contact (five Ks over his 9 2-3 innings) which is great news for Baddoo, who has a barrel/PA percentage of over 10 percent, which is considered elite. He also leads the team in sweet spot percentage at 57.1 percent.
Baddoo is sadly hitting near the bottom of the order in Detroit and has hit RHP better than LHP pitching, but with his market cooling off a bit with a 1-for-11 stretch, we can get his total bases prop at 0.5.
We also like the Casey Mize Over 4.5 strikeouts (-110) if you’re looking for more action on this game.
Washington Nationals team total Under 3.5 (+119)
We wouldn’t be doing our job if we didn’t handicap the day’s first game of the slate.
The Washington offense has done nothing out of the gates and sits in 26th with 3.70 runs scored per game. The Nats put up a single run yesterday (and won the game) and have scored three or fewer runs in five of their 11 games. The Nationals have a wRC+ below 100 (indicating a below-average run-producing offense), one of the league’s worst walk rates and don’t have much danger in the order after Trea Turner (1st) and Juan Soto (2nd).
Getting a plus match-up on the mound for the Diamondbacks is right-hander Luke Weaver. The former first-round pick is coming off a dominant scoreless outing that saw him give up just one hit while striking out eight over seven. Weaver has allowed just five hits across 12 2-3 innings this year, which includes a start in Colorado.
Washington has also launched just four long balls against RHP this season over 259 plate appearances, which is the second-lowest rate in the league behind the Mets.
With the Nationals’ cold bats playing in the cold air of the Nation’s Capital (52 degrees F) and a medium-sized wind (8 mph) aiding the pitchers, we’re hitting the Under on the home team’s total of 3.5 for plus-money.
Cincinnati Reds team total Over 3.5 (-135)
The Cincinnati Reds pace the league in runs produced at home by a wide margin. Over their seven games at Great American Ball Park, the Reds are averaging 9.50 runs per game, which is nearly three runs more than the next-best team. They hung a 10-spot on Cleveland yesterday and have now put up double-digits in four of their last five games at home.
Cleveland has the youngest pitching staff in the Majors and will send 23-year-old Triston McKenzie to the bump on Saturday. McKenzie is a raw right-hander with electric movement, but he has yet to harness it so far in his MLB career. The walks are starting to pile up and the young starter has given up seven homers in 41 innings of work in the pros.
Nick Castellanos is slashing .444/.483/1.148 at home this season across 29 plate appearances and should continue to push this offense to the moon. The wind is blowing straight out to center field which can only help in a ballpark that has the greatest home-run factor in the MLB at 1.324. Castellanos is paying plus-money (+110) on his Over 1.5 total bases.
We like this Cincy team total up to 4.5 and would rather take it at 4.5 (+118) than the juicier 3.5 (-135) if available.
Yesterday's MLB record: 1-1, -0.33 units
Season MLB betting record: 24-24, -2.4 units
MLB betting card for April 17
- Akil Baddoo Over 0.5 total bases (-133)
- Washington Nationals team total Under 3.5 (+119)
- Cincinnati Reds team total Over 3.5 (-135)
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