San Francisco Giants at Pittsburgh Pirates
First pitch: 1:05 p.m. ET
Probable pitchers: Alex Wood (4-0, 1.80 ERA) vs. Mitch Keller (2-4, 7.81 ERA)
Since making his season, not to mention team, debut nearly a month ago after beginning the year on the injured list, no one’s held steadier than Wood. Considering it’s been five starts now, this renaissance is something worth tailing.
I’ve already taken two of Wood’s outings for unders and am feeling out a third on this Sunday afternoon. He’s just been so consistent and in his next assignment, he gets a hapless Pirates bunch that should have issues with the veteran southpaw, especially while down a few key regulars.
Even normally, this is an offense that holds the lowest team OPS (.631) and batting average (.197) against left-handed pitching in the National League. And being a getaway-day game following a nighttime clash, others might be absent.
Most challenging, of course, will be getting something useful out of the opposing starter as Wood does his thing. That would be Keller, who is seemingly going backwards in his third campaign.
The former second-round draft pick is coming off a showing in which he was hounded for seven runs. This was already the seventh time Keller’s allowed five or more runs in an outing in 23 career assignments, meaning he’s been tagged pretty hard in nearly a third of his starts.
When that doesn’t happen, though, Keller looks pretty good and like he can stick as at least a decent mid-rotation arm. Ironically, him coming off a bad performance could actually indicate success his next time out, being today.
In the previous six instances Keller was hit for five or more runs, he generally followed up with a fine rebound, yielding two earned runs or fewer in five of those ensuing starts. This will qualify as such.
Here, he doesn’t even have to be that dominant with an over/under of 8. Wood continuing his masterful work as a Giant figures to lead the way and as long as Keller hangs in there, that should suffice.
MLB Picks & Prediction
Pick: UNDER 8 @ -119 (Click to bet)
Sunday's MLB Leans
Rangers-Astros Under 8
Athletics-Twins Under 8.5
Nationals-Diamondbacks Under 9.5
2021 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: “19-22-2,” -5.99 units
Yesterday’s Result: Rangers-Astros Under 8.5 (loss)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit