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MLB Best Bets for June 19: Moneyline and NRFI Picks Today

Publish Date: 06/19/2024
Fact checked by: Allan Howe

Wednesday is always an exciting day in baseball with so many series concluding and play beginning early in the afternoon. There should still be plenty of ways to get down on this slate in the evening, and we'll get into them below.

(Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)

I'll be going back to the well with the Boston Red Sox for a third straight night, and celebrating the return of one of the game's top arms with a play on the Over/Under in Orioles vs Yankees. Finally, we've got a NRFI pick today out West.

Let's get into the slate and give out our MLB Best Bets for Wednesday, June 19.

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MLB BEST BET FOR BALTIMORE ORIOLES VS NEW YORK YANKEES

Today marks the long-awaited season debut of reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Gerrit Cole following an injury that's kept him away for the past few months, and I think he's ready to come out hot here in a big divisional matchup.

  1. The right-hander has looked like himself this month, firing 12 1/3 innings of one-run ball on rehab down in the minors with 19 punchouts and no walks. His fastball velocity is there, and that should mean his strikeout prowess should continue in a great spot on Wednesday.
  2. Cole, who punched out a high 27% of the batters he faced last season, will meet an Orioles team that has produced a wealth of power over the last two weeks but has struck out in nearly 24% of their plate appearances to rank inside the top 10 of the league over that span.
  3. They've also failed to take many walks and have offered at over 48% of the pitches they've seen -- another figure that's in the top 10 of the league -- and that should help the righty navigate this order with relative ease and get through a good portion of this game even if he's on a pitch count.

I'm similarly feeling it with Cade Povich, one of the top pitching prospects in baseball, who pitched relatively well despite allowing six runs in his debut a couple of weeks ago and reaffirmed that sentiment with six shutout innings against Atlanta last time out.

  • The key there was that the Braves are loaded with power and were facing Povich in the hitter-friendly Camden Yards, so for a guy who is still working on producing more ground balls it was highly encouraging.

The lefty was also able to make it through six frames without walking a batter, after walking four in his debut which opened the floodgates for Toronto, and for a guy who has struggled in that area throughout his minor-league career it's a great step in the right direction.

The Yankees are a considerably worse offense with Trent Grisham in the lineup, not only because he's one of the worst hitters on the planet, but it's meant Aaron Judge or Juan Soto has been out of the order.

  • That'll likely be the case on Wednesday after Judge was hit by a pitch last night, and with that I think he should remain effective and deliver an Under.
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Best Bet: Under 8 Runs (-115 at FanDuel)

Looking to bet this one as the action unfolds? Check out our MLB Live Betting Guide.

MLB BEST BET FOR BOSTON RED SOX VS TORONTO BLUE JAYS

It's Red Sox 2, Blue Jays 0 in this series, and it's also Kenny 2, Oddsmakers 0 if you've been scoring at home. I'm going to back Boston one more time, as we both aim for a sweep in Toronto.

  1. The thing is, Kevin Gausman isn't very good -- and you can make a very good case that aside from his career resurgence in the pitching factory known as San Francisco, he hasn't ever been good.
  2. The righty's strikeout rate has plummeted from 31.1% a season ago to 23.8% this season, something that's going to be of note here considering what we've laid out all week about Boston. This is a team that has one of the highest Isolated Power marks in the league, but has been held down by a gaudy strikeout rate.
  3. With more balls coming back in play against Gausman given his lack of punchouts and a ridiculously high .484 Expected Slugging, this reeks of disaster for the Blue Jays' starter on Wednesday.

Toronto is mired in a massive slump right now with an 87 wRC+ over the past two weeks, and against ground-ball pitchers they're hitting just .234 to rank 18th in the league with a 24th-ranked slugging percentage.

That should help the Ground Ball Man known as Brayan Bello return to form, considering he has the talent to get outs with consistency but has run into a month and a half of trouble on contact.

Bello's expected rates are still right around the league averages, so I think a below-average team on contact should not project to be nearly as dangerous as the offense on the other side of the matchup.

The youngster may not be the tantalizing arm he once promised to be with his rise through the minor-league ranks years ago, but he should be a serviceable one at the very least -- and serviceable will do just fine against a lineup this bad.

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Best Bet: Red Sox ML (+115 at Caesars)

Not sure where to place your bet? Be sure to check out our ballislifebets section. 

BEST NRFI BETS TODAY

We targeted the YRFI in Dodgers vs Rockies at Coors Field last night, watching the Rockies hang four runs in the first inning against Walker Buehler.

I don't think their luck will be quite the same against the returning Bobby Miller, who has been nothing but brilliant since making his debut last season.

Miller's incredible strikeout numbers should return immediately in his first start back from injury against a Rockies team which has one of the five worst punchout rates in baseball, and while Colorado has returned two key bats to the top of its order you can make a good case for that actually hurting this team given Nolan Jones hasn't had a great season.

  • With the free-swinging Ezequiel Tovar hitting third, and a frequent strikeout victim in Charlie Blackmon leading off, I think Miller should navigate the top of the order quite well here.
  • For the Dodgers, they're no longer able to pencil in Mookie Betts at leadoff after his injury over the weekend and they'll have to face arguably the top arm on the Rockies in Ryan Feltner, who's pitched to a solid 3.98 xERA and has managed to keep the ball out of the air which is vital at Coors Field.

The NRFI here is the best contrarian bet on the card and offers a ton of value.

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NRFI Predictions: Dodgers vs Rockies NRFI (+116 at FanDuel)

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