It’s do-or-die time in the MLB, which means a lot is riding on every pitch from here until October. 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.
We're coming off a 3-0 +3u Wednesday and are looking to carry that heater into the weekend. Today, we’re looking for a better performance out of a Toronto starter, hitting a first-inning over in New York and rolling with a 40-year-old vet.
Check out our favorite MLB free prop bets and predictions for Saturday, September 18.
Today’s MLB props and picks
Minnesota team total Under 4.5 (-147)
The Twins got the best of the Jays last night in a 7-3 win, but they also got to tag struggling starter Hyun Jin Ryu for five runs before the fourth inning. This afternoon, they’ll face another lefty, but one who has pitched to a 2.79 ERA over his last seven starts.
Steven Matz has been one of the more underappreciated starters in baseball this year. He has given the Jays 128 innings of solid left-handed pitching and has allowed two or fewer runs in seven of his last eight starts. Matz has been so good of late that he sits 15th in second-half ERA amongst all MLB starters. Right now, he is the fourth-most trusted pitcher on a talented rotation.
Although Matz has yet to see the Twins this year, he’s made three starts at Rogers Center and is 1-0 with a 1.59 ERA with a 14/5 K-BB split over 17 innings. He will likely hand things over in the seventh inning to a bullpen that has the sixth-best ERA (3.54) in baseball over the last 30 days.
The Twins have not been swinging a hot stick over the last 30, despite last night’s results. They have scored the fourth-fewest runs in baseball over that stretch and are hitting .223 with a sub-.300 OBP, as well. We like the Jays to get back on track Saturday and that means keeping the Twins off the scoreboard.
Shopping around for this prop is tricky, as it can be found at 4.5 with the Under paying -147 or at 3.5 with the Under paying +117. These two prices vary substantially, with the Under 4.5 implying 59.5 percent probability while the Under 3.5 has a 46.1 percent probability. With the Twins averaging 4.43 runs per game on the road and the Jays allowing 4.10 runs per game (they have wonky home stats thanks to moving so much), getting this number at 4.5 might give us a little better than 59.5 percent probability, as it is Under both teams’ season averages.
Phillies/Mets first inning Over 0.5 (-105)
Aaron Nola and the playoff-hopeful Phillies will face Carlos Carrasco and the Mets Saturday night in a game that could see plenty of runs from the starters. Offenses aside, both starters have plenty of split data to back up an early-inning Over or a run in the first inning bet.
Nola comes into the start with a 4.58 ERA, but it's been his pitching of late that has us hitting the fade button. The Philly right-hander is pitching to a 7.58 ERA across three starts in September. He has struck out 21 over his last 14 1-3 innings but Nola has been getting squared up and hit hard of late. No. 1 batters in the order are hitting .333 with a near-1.000 OPS against Nola.
Carrasco has turned things around after a disastrous start to the campaign, but the former Cleveland pitcher has struggled early in his starts. Teams’ No.1 and No. 2 batters are hitting a robust .425 with a 1.321 OPS versus the Mets’ right-hander while he owns an insane 15.00 ERA in the first inning.
Carrasco and the Mets have hit a first-inning Over in eight of the pitcher’s nine starts this year, including all seven of his previous starts. It’s another quick and dirty first inning Over for us at Citi Field Saturday, especially at better than -110.
St. Louis first five innings ML (-122)
It’s safe to say that 40-year-old Adam Wainwright is enjoying his 16th season in the Bigs. He’s 10th in the league in ERA at 2.88 and has collected 16 wins on the year including five victories in his last five starts. He owns a 1.24 ERA over his last seven games to go along with a 0.79 WHIP.
Wainwright has been methodical in his approach and is giving batters nothing, having surrendered just one long ball over his last 57 2-3 innings. He has also been stingy AF with just 11 free passes allowed over that stretch. Waino is a hard story not to get behind in the final weeks of the 2021 season.
The St. Louis pitcher got hit hard in his only start against the Padres this year giving up six runs in four innings but that was back in May when the right-hander wasn’t on fire. Wainwright has recorded at least 18 outs in 12 straight starts and nine of those he has gone six-plus innings.
Wainwright and the Cards have plenty to play for Saturday with the Wild Card race getting really tight down the stretch. We expect the veteran to bring his A-game versus the Padres and get deep in this important meeting.
The Cards have won eight of their last nine games, while the Padres aren’t in great form, having won just two times over their last eight matches. Yu Darvish has been one of the worst starters in baseball in the second half with a 7.20 ERA over nine starts. We’re firing up the Cards on the first five ML in a pitching matchup we think substantially favors the home team.
MLB betting card for September 18
- Minnesota team total Under 4.5 (-147)
- Phillies/Mets first inning Over 0.5 (-105)
- St. Louis first five innings ML (-122)
Picks made on 9/18/2021 at 6:30 a.m. ET
Did you know that if you parlayed today’s MLB prop picks, you could win $49.69 on a $10 bet?
Use our MLB parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.