Today’s MLB Prop Bets, Picks and Predictions: Kikuchi's Lack of K's Highlight Labor Day Plays

Yusei Kikuchi has six combined strikeouts in his last two starts against the Astros, and he's struck out just 25 batters over his last 30 innings overall. We're not banking on him logging Over 4.5 Ks tonight, highlighting our best Labor Day MLB prop plays.

Andrew Caley - Senior Betting Analyst at
Andrew Caley • Senior Betting Analyst
Sep 6, 2021 • 11:14 ET • 3 min read
Yusei Kikuchi Seattle Mariners MLB
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

It may be Labor Day, but just like MLB players, we are putting in the work to find you the best value in the baseball prop bet market. And because it’s a holiday, that means prop bets can fuel you all day long.

We start by looking at a prop for one of baseball’s most reliable innings-eaters, and then we break out an oldie but goodie as a solid pitching matchup has us looking at an elevated five-inning total in Colorado.

We break down and pick these games and more with our best free MLB prop bets and predictions for Monday, September 6.

Today’s MLB props and picks

Zack Wheeler Over 18.5 Outs Recorded (-115)

Our favorite innings eater is back on the mound Monday as Zack Wheeler takes the ball for Philadelphia Phillies as they visit the Milwaukee Brewers. 

Despite Wheeler’s recent struggles, he is still one of the most reliable arms the Phillies have at their disposal, so don’t expect Joe Girardi to have a short leash with him in this one — even if he gets in a little trouble. The right-hander has a 6.41 ERA in his last four starts but has still averaged 6.7 innings per game over that span.

The National League Central-leading Brewers will provide a tough test for Wheeler, but he should have a chance to have success in this matchup. 

For starters, the Brewers aren’t the strongest against right-handers, ranking 21st in batting average and 14th in OPS against RHP. And second, Wheeler has also recorded a complete-game shutout earlier this year against the Brewers — where he allowed just three this.

Wheeler has also gone over this number of outs recorded six times in his last eight starts and 18 times over his 27 starts this season — we’re betting he does so once again today.

San Francisco-Colorado Under 6 Five-Inning Total (-115)

Last week we brought back one of our classic MLB prop bets — the Rocky Mountain Low — to great success, and the opportunity presents itself once again as the San Francisco Giants visit the Colorado Rockies.

The Giants hand the ball to ace Kevin Gausman while the Rockies counter with Kyle Freeland, which makes the first-half total of 6 look a touch too high. For those who aren't in the know, the Rocky Mountain Low refers to betting the Under on the first-five or full-game total in Rockies home games that feature good starting pitching matchups — but have an elevated total due to the thin air at Coors Field (just like today's game).

Gausman has been one of the best starters in the National League all season long, pitching to a 2.52 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP while limiting opponents to a .193 batting average. While the Rockies lineup is much more adept at showing up at home, overall they rank 14th in batting average and 20th in OPS when facing right-handers this season.

On the other side, Freeland is quietly having himself a nice little comeback season. The lefty has allowed three earned runs or fewer 12 times in his last 13 starts, where he has a 2.66 ERA and 1.07 WHIP over that span. He goes up against a deep Giants lineup, but one that doesn’t fare as well against southpaws, ranking a mediocre 16th in batting average and OPS vs lefties.

This one should sneak Under the first half number.

Yusei Kikuchi Under 4.5 Strikeouts (-150)

It has been a tale of two halves for Seattle Mariners starter Yusei Kikuchi. The lefty pitched to a 3.48 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP in the first half of the season, earning his first career All-Star selection. 

But the second half hasn’t been as smooth, with his ERA ballooning to 5.48 and his WHIP to 1.54 in nine starts since the break. That said, maybe he has found that first-half form, coming off seven shutout innings against the American League-West leading Houston Astros. 

He goes up against those same Astros tonight in Houston but even if Kikuchi has another strong outing, don't expect it to be because he is racking up the strikeouts. The lefty has faced the Astros twice in his last three starts, striking out just six total batters in those games, and he has struck out just 25 batters over his last 30 innings of work.

When you consider that the Astros have one of the best lineups in baseball and are incredibly patient, striking out less than anyone in the MLB at just 7.53 times per game, then taking the Under on Kikuchi’s strikeout total seems like a safe bet in this one.

MLB betting card for September 6

  • Zack Wheeler Over 18.5 Outs Recorded (-115)
  • SF-COL Under 6 Five-Inning Total (-115)
  • Yusei Kikuchi Under 4.5 Strikeouts (-150)

Picks made on 9/6/2021 at 11:53 a.m. ET

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