Two teams in the midst of the ultra-competitive AL East divisional race will square off tonight to begin a three-game series, as the Blue Jays will be in Baltimore to take on the Orioles. We’ll preview game one of the series before going over which prop market I’ll be targeting for the action.
The Baltimore Orioles will enter this series on a high note, as they are in the midst of a four-game win streak, and after they completed their sweep of the Royals on Sunday, they got a rest day at home yesterday. Baltimore’s offense was phenomenal in Sunday’s 11-3 win over Kansas City, as they put up 14 hits and had three separate innings in which they scored three runs. One of those hits was a huge home run from Gunnar Henderson, who seems to have turned a corner since the beginning of the month.
As they look for their fifth straight win, the Orioles will send Dean Kremer to the mound for his 14th start of the season. The right-hander has racked up 70 innings up to this point, in which he has a 4.89 ERA with 59 strikeouts and 19 walks. Kremer is fresh off one of his worst outings of the year against the Brewers, as he allowed six earned runs in five innings.
Tonight Kremer will face a Blue Jays lineup that was able to put up seven runs on Sunday to avoid getting swept by the Twins. A massive three-run home run from Cavan Biggio in the 8th inning helped erase a 6-4 deficit and moved the Blue Jays record over their past ten games to 7-3. Matt Chapman also homered in the game, which is a good sign for Toronto fans since the third baseman has struggled a bit since his red-hot start to the season.
On the bump for the Blue Jays, tonight will be veteran righty Chris Bassitt. In his last two starts, Bassitt has been phenomenal, throwing 15 ⅔ innings with 13 strikeouts and just two earned runs allowed. With those outings, his season ERA is down to 3.29 in 82 innings of work.
For my prop play in this one, I’ll be targeting Chris Bassitt to go under his walk total of 1.5, which is priced at (+127). After a tough start to the season with command, the right-hander has seemed to have gotten it under control as of late by going under this total in four of his last five outings. In his last two starts, Bassitt has not issued one walk across those 15 ⅔ innings and now faces an Orioles lineup that has not taken many free passes as of late.
Since May 13th, the Orioles have a walk percentage of 6.6% at home against right-handed pitching, the fourth lowest in the league in that span. Baltimore is right at the league average in terms of 3-0 counts seen this season, and they are also tied for fourth in terms of the most swing attempts on 3-0 counts.
Aside from the Orioles' willingness and want to swing, Bassitt has also displayed more command when pitching on the road this season. The right-hander’s walk percentage on the road is currently at 7.5%, and his BB/9 is down to 2.46. With his first pitch strike percentage up to 64.2% and the way he’s been throwing lately, I think Bassitt continues to avoid free passes tonight.
Chris Bassitt Under 1.5 Walks (+127)