By now, we know what Fridays are for: betting baseball to get a head start on the weekend.
That’s where we come in. Our baseball writers came up with two best bets in an attempt to help get your weekend started out on the right foot.
Our action tonight starts with Chicago White Sox vs. Detroit Tigers in an AL Central matchup at 7:10 p.m. ET before shifting to a matchup between the Los Angeles Angels and Arizona Diamondbacks on the West Coast.
Check out each pick complete with a full breakdown, and use the table below to navigate to either game.
MLB Odds & Picks
|Click on a game to skip ahead|
|White Sox vs. Tigers||7:10 p.m. ET|
|Angels vs. Diamondbacks||9:40 p.m. ET|
White Sox vs. Tigers
|Pick||White Sox Team Total Over 4.5 (-107)|
|Pitchers||Lucas Giolito vs. Tarik Skubal|
|First Pitch||7:10 p.m. ET|
Brad Cunningham: In case you didn’t know, the White Sox absolutely crush left handed pitching. They have an incredibly high .350 wOBA and 126 wRC+, both of which are second-best in MLB.
Two of the pitches they’ve had the most success against are fastballs and sliders, ranking eighth against fastballs and third against sliders — and those just so happen to be the two main pitchesTarik Skubal goes to over 73% of the time.
This is probably the worst possible matchup for Skubal, who’s been pretty bad for the Tigers this season. He’s posted a 4.99 ERA, and he’s having some issues with his control because his BB/9 rate is all the way up at 4.33 and his HR/9 rate is at 2.
Angels vs. Diamondbacks
|Pitchers||Shohei Ohtani vs. Merrill Kelly|
|First Pitch||9:40 p.m. ET|
Matt Trebby: Fading the Diamondbacks seems like a solid strategy anyway, but when you take into account that they’re taking on a surging Angels team with Shohei Ohtani on the mound, it’s even easier to do.
The Angels, who are unlikely to get Mike Trout back this month, have won six of their first eight games in June and are coming off a three-game sweep of the Royals at home. Arizona, meanwhile, has lost seven straight and is terrible, with all due respect.
While Ohtani has kept raking this month, the key for the Angels’ current run has been new leadoff hitter Justin Upton, who has a 1.515 OPS with four home runs in eight June games. It’ll be fun for Los Angeles to likely hit its pitcher second behind Upton in the National League ballpark.
On the mound, Ohtani has been brilliant. He has a 2.76 ERA and 3.44 xFIP through eight starts this season and has only improved as the year has gone on.
Ohtani has allowed more than two runs twice, and he gave up three and four, respectively, in those starts, and he has allowed a .589 OPS against in his last five starts. The only concern with him is walks, although he’s issued just seven in his last four outings, spanning 23 2/3 innings.
On the other side, you shouldn’t feel too bad about fading Merrill Kelly. His 5.12 ERA should be a little lower, according to his xFIP of 3.95 and BABIP of .313, but he simply hasn’t shown much since returning to the majors from the KBO other than being a bottom-of-the-rotation arm.