MLB weekend best bets: Padres to rebound vs. Rockies
Only five games are scheduled on the second day of the MLB season. Thankfully, things kick back into full swing with a hefty slate of games Saturday.
Let's look at a couple of sides worth backing over the next two days.
Rockies (+170) @ Padres (-200)
Mar. 31, 9:40 p.m. ET
Kyle Freeland does not like facing the Padres; at least, he shouldn't like it. Dating back to last season, Freeland conceded 17 runs and 37 baserunners over his last four starts versus San Diego. That's a ton to give up in just over 19 innings of work.
Although I don't expect Freeland to give up nearly a run and two baserunners per inning, there's plenty of reason to believe San Diego can get to him again.
Freeland doesn't strike many batters out. He needs help to go above his usual floor and ceiling, and the Padres aren't a team who will give him that. Six of their top seven projected batters strike out at a below-average rate.
Freeland struggles with righties, but he's especially bad against lefties. That's hardly ideal when going up against a potential MVP candidate in Juan Soto and a dangerous bat in Jake Cronenworth.
Fresh off a disappointing effort in the season opener, I expect San Diego to bounce back Friday and look like the potent offensive team it is.
Assuming that's the case, the Friars should have a strong chance of winning the first five innings - and the game as a whole - against this weak Rockies side.
The Rockies ranked 29th in wOBA - and dead last in ISO - on the road against righties last season, which is the situation they find themselves in. They're not a good offense if they aren't at home and/or facing a lefty.
Expect that to shine through.
Bet: Padres F5 -0.5 (-125)
Twins (TBD) @ Royals (TBD)
Apr. 1, 4:10 p.m. ET
The Twins took care of business in their season opener, shutting out the Royals in Kansas City.
The stars are aligning for Minnesota to bag another win in Game 2 Saturday, and the fun should start early.
The Twins have another big pitching advantage, with Sonny Gray going opposite Jordan Lyles.
Lyles posted a FIP above 5.0 in two of the last three seasons. While last year was an exception, his xERA still finished just under 5.0. Not good.
Gray is coming off a much better campaign, posting a 3.40 FIP. That was the second-best total since his first full MLB season in 2014.
He records strikeouts at a healthy rate, doesn't allow many free passes, and has done a consistently good job keeping the ball inside the park.
The Royals ranked 25th in wOBA and 26th in ISO against righties last season. The Twins slotted eighth in wOBA and 14th in ISO, while their best player, Byron Buxton, appeared in only 92 games.
Buxton's healthy now, so it stands to reason that Minnesota's offense, in its current form, could be better than last year's - which was still above average across the board.
With a more dangerous offense and a better pitcher, the Twins should be able to get off to a strong start in this one.
Bet: Twins F5 -0.5 (projected odds: -110)
Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @ToddCordell.
- Judge out vs. Dodgers after banging toe making spectacular catch
- Cora fed up with mistakes from Red Sox: 'Defensively, we're not good'
- White Sox closer Hendriks earns win on National Cancer Survivors Day
- Diamondbacks extend Lovullo's contract through 2024 season
- Twins' Lewis avoids serious injury after flipping over 1B, landing on head