The Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants will spend their Memorial Day at Oracle Park for game one of their three-game set. We’ll preview tonight’s matchup before going over my best prop play for the action.
After a solid win on Friday night over the Mariners, the Pittsburgh Pirates fell in the next two games, which gave them a series loss and brought their record over the past ten games to 4-6. The Pirates scored 11 runs in the series' first game with Seattle but only managed to score three over the next two games. Pittsburgh left 23 runners on base in yesterday’s extra-inning loss, as they fell victim to a Eugenio Suarez walk-off home run.
As the Pirates look to bounce back, they will send veteran lefty Rich Hill to the mound. In ten starts and 52.7 innings, the lefty has a 4.27 ERA with 52 strikeouts and 17 walks. Despite striking out nine in his most recent outing, Hill still took the loss as he was touched up for five earned runs in 5 ⅓ innings by the Rangers.
Hill will face a Giants team that is 7-3 over their last ten games, and even with their loss yesterday, they still took three out of four games over the Brewers to win the series. San Francisco scored five or more runs in three of the games, and even though they failed to secure a sweep yesterday, they still put up a five spot. Out of their seven hits in the games, the two biggest came off Mike Yastrzemski and Blake Sabol's bats as they left the yard.
Anthony DeSclafani will take the mound for the Giants this evening for his 11th start of the year. In 60.3 innings, the right-hander has pitched to a 3.43 ERA with 47 strikeouts and just nine walks. DeSclafani took the loss his last time on the mound, with the Twins scoring seven runs (four earned) off him in five innings.
Pittsburgh has been racking up strikeouts at an alarming rate during the month of May, and with that, I’ll be taking Anthony DeSclafani to go over 4.5 strikeouts, which is priced at (-120). The right-hander is averaging 4.7 per game this season and has gone over today’s total in six out of his ten starts, including his last two, in which he punched out six in both.
DeSclafani faces a Pirates lineup tonight with the highest strikeout percentage in the league against righties on the road this month at 32.8%. Pittsburgh also has a .185 average against right-handed pitching on the road, so it is a more than ideal matchup for him to continue to rack up strikeouts. Across the entire season, the Pirates also have the fourth-highest strikeout-looking percentage and are below the league average in contact percentage.
San Francisco has run out some interesting pitching strategies this season with a lot of long relievers and bullpen games, but DeSclafani is one of the starters that Gabe Kapler lets work a bit deeper into games. The righty averages 18.1 outs recorded per game, so mixed with his 21.4% strikeout percentage at home, I think he can exceed his total for the third straight game.
Anthony DeSclafani Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-120)