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Matt Zylbert kicks the week off with a pick for White Sox vs. Mariners

Chicago White Sox vs. Seattle Mariners

Chicago White Sox at Seattle Mariners

Over/Under: 8.5

First pitch: 10:10 p.m. ET


Probable pitchers: Carlos Rodon (0-0, -.-- ERA) vs. Justus Sheffield (0-0, -.-- ERA)

Chicago White Sox vs. Seattle Mariners Predictons

An advantage of betting on early-season games is catching rising pitchers in buy-low spots before the linesmakers adjust.

This series opener in Seattle tonight fits the bill, containing two starters that are clearly much on the verge of ascending.

There is Carlos Rodon, a former No. 3 overall draft pick that hasn’t quite lived up the high hype bestowed upon him awhile ago, but a lot of that has been due to injuries. In six seasons, Rodon has been limited to less than 20 starts three times, including just nine total the last two years.

However, this seems to be the prime version of Rodon beginning the 2021 campaign. He certainly looked healthy during spring training, where he notched a superb 1.32 ERA. Yes, it was just 13.2 innings but Rodon looked sharp enough in my book to merit backing coming out of the gate. He also strung together a 16:1 K/BB ratio and yielded only two earned runs.

Rodon in rhythm is an All-Star caliber pitcher. He’ll get a favorable first draw to prove that once again, as not only does this road assignment supply a date in a real pitcher-friendly ballpark, it also pits him against the offense that was dead-last in team OPS (.609) and average (.190) opposite southpaws a year ago.

Though the Mariners are out to a fine start with 15 runs scored through their 2-1 start, they haven’t shown much improvement when dealing with left-handed pitching, sporting a putrid .286 OPS in that department to rank second from the bottom. Without injured Rookie of the Year Kyle Lewis, there isn’t going to be a sudden jump in this difficult matchup.

Rodon’s counterpart, Sheffield, is another lefty ready to emerge if he can just maintain his development from last year. In the shortened pandemic season, the 24-year-old registered a respectable 3.58 ERA, including a September that saw him allow two runs or fewer in his four turns.

Outside of one rough outing, Sheffield looked solid during the spring, and most importantly, ended it on a high note to keep his confidence going after last season’s success. He’ll start things off having to face a tough lineup, but without Eloy Jimenez and possibly Tim Anderson, this is a date he can handle effectively.

As the over/under has already gone down in many spots, try to find one that still has 8.5. Even if you are unsuccessful in that, it’s still worth a wager with 8 on the board.

Pick: UNDER 8.5 @ -120 (Click to bet)

Monday's MLB Leans

Mets-Phillies Under 7

2021 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: 2-2, -0.3 unit

Yesterday’s Result: Twins-Brewers Under 8 (“loss”)

*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit

Friday's MLB Leans

Giants-Mariners Under 8.5

2021 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: 1-0, +1 unit

Yesterday’s Result: Rays-Marlins Under 7.5 (WIN)

*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit


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