The MLB season has fewer than 50 games remaining before the playoffs, and there are several developments to review from the last 30 games.
The recent theme in that stretch has been the cream rising to the top. The Baltimore Orioles and LA Dodgers are tied for the best record in the league during that span (21-9), and teams like Houston, Texas, and Atlanta are all in the top ten. The Orioles have managed the second-best record in baseball despite playing the most games of any team against opponents with .500 or better records.
Meanwhile, upstart teams like Arizona, Miami, Cincinnati, and Tampa Bay have a combined record of 42-78 in their previous 30 games. The D’backs, Marlins, and Reds look to be hanging on by a thread among a group of six teams within 3.5 games of the NL wild card positions. Arizona’s current eight-game losing streak has dropped them 11 games behind the Dodgers in the West.
There are eight games on Thursday’s schedule, led by series finales between Baltimore-Houston and Atlanta-Pittsburgh at 12:35 pm ET and capped off with the Dodgers hosting the Rockies under the lights in southern California.
We’ve prepared a prop card for today’s matchups and present our best bets next.
Bailey Falter UNDER 3.5 Strikeouts (-130 @ FanDuel)
Falter is still looking for his first win of the season and was reasonably effective during his first start for Pittsburgh after being traded across the state from Philadelphia. He has yet to face the Braves this year despite coming from a division foe, and his recent performance indicates that he could struggle against Atlanta’s potent lineup.
Falter had not pitched since May 15 and has only struck out four or more hitters three times in nine appearances. His season-high performance is seven strikeouts in six innings against Seattle on April 25, but he hasn’t reached 5+ strikeouts in any other game.
Atlanta is chasing pitchers early this year thanks to scoring nearly a run per game in the first inning while striking out sparingly, and we expect Falter’s win drought to continue.
George Springer OVER 1.5 Total Bases (+105 @ DraftKings)
Springer’s bat has come alive in August, and today’s matchup with Noah Syndergaard is a friendly spot for him to continue an impressive stretch.
The 2-time Silver Slugger is slashing .382/.436/.559 this month and has three multi-hit games over his last five starts. His power numbers have been down all season, but he’s shown signs of a breakout with three doubles and a home run in Toronto’s last two series against Boston and Cleveland.
Syndergaard is experiencing a three-year stretch on the mound where his combined WAR is 0.9. He has allowed 11 hits and six earned runs in two starts for Cleveland since being acquired from the Dodgers, and we like Springer to take advantage amidst a hot streak on Thursday.
Bobby Witt Jr. OVER 1.5 Total Bases (-115 @ Bet 365)
The Royals’ shortstop has an OPS of nearly 1.000 since July 1 and has hit safely in eight of ten games, entering this series’ final matchup with Boston. His OPS is almost 80 points higher against lefties this season, and James Paxton takes the bump for the Sox today.
Paxton has given up 17 hits in his last two starts and has a 5.40 ERA over his previous five appearances. Given these recent trends, we like Witt to add multiple bases to his season total today.