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Best MLB Bets Today | MLB Picks, May 31

Written by: Bryan Zarpentine
Published May 31, 2023
13 min read
MLB Best Bets Today May 31

Pittsburgh Pirates vs San Francisco Giants 

Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook

My Pick: Giants ML

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4.3/5

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The Giants have found themselves during the second half of May, which should bode well for them in Wednesday’s rubber match. They are 11-4 over their last 15 games and haven’t lost back-to-back games in over two weeks, so they should bounce back well from Tuesday’s loss. Meanwhile, the Pirates have gone in the opposite direction, going just 7-19 in May. Naturally, the Pirates have won back-to-back games just once this month, which also points to a San Francisco win on Wednesday.

The good news for Pittsburgh is that Mitch Keller is on the mound. He’s in the midst of a breakout season, going 6-1 with a 3.01 ERA thus far. But he’s not a panacea for the Pirates, especially against a hot San Francisco lineup. The Giants torched the Pirates for 14 runs in Monday’s win and have scored at least five runs four times in the last six games. Mitch Haniger and Michael Conforto have heated up lately, allowing the Giants to start living up to their potential offensively.

Meanwhile, the Giants will have Alex Wood on the mound to complement their red-hot lineup. Despite missing time on the IL, Wood has pitched well when healthy with the Giants going 5-1 in his starts. The lefty allowed one run over 5.2 innings in his last start, so he’s starting to get in a groove. Wood will also be facing a Pittsburgh lineup that’s scored three runs or less in seven of its last 10 games, which also points to the Giants being able to win Wednesday’s rubber match.

Philadelphia Phillies vs New York Mets

Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook

My Pick: Mets ML

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4.3/5

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The Phillies are slight favorites in this game, which is why it’s a good opportunity to bet on the Mets with a positive moneyline, giving them tons of value. New York is 3-2 as a home underdog this season and 13-9 overall at home following a 2-0 win over the Phillies on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Phillies have been a disaster on the road, going 11-19. They are also just 12-22 against teams with a winning record, which the Mets have after Tuesday’s win. While the Phillies have a perceived edge in starting pitching, it’s not enough to overcome their struggles against good teams on the road this year.

With Carlos Carrasco’s 6.75 ERA, it’s easy to dismiss the Mets in this game. But that number is inflated by some poor outings while Carrasco was dealing with an elbow problem. He gave up three runs in his first inning back from the IL but has allowed just three runs over the last 10.2 innings, so it’s a different story with Carrasco now that he’s healthy. Plus, key hitters for the Phillies like Trea Turner, Bryce Harper, and Kyle Schwarber have slumped lately. That explains why the Phillies were shut out on Tuesday and have scored three runs or less in six of their last 11 games.

To be fair, Aaron Nola starts for Philly on Wednesday, giving them a chance in this game. But Nola has been wildly inconsistent this year, posting a 4.59 ERA. The Phillies are just 5-6 in Nola’s starts, including 2-5 in his road starts. Plus, Pete Alonso, Jeff McNeil, and Starling Marte are all hitting over .300 against Nola in their careers with Alonso going 15 for 43 (.349) with eight extra-base hits. In other words, the Mets are poised to give Nola some trouble on Wednesday night and beat the Phillies for the second straight day.

New York Yankees vs Seattle Mariners

Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook

My Pick: Mariners ML

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4.3/5

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The Yankees have come on strong lately, winning four in a row and scoring 10 runs in three straight games. On Wednesday, they have a chance to complete a road sweep of the Mariners. However, the Yankees are going to have to overcome Clark Schmidt on the mound, which is why they are slight underdogs in this game. Wednesday looks like a day that the Yankees could cool off, allowing the Mariners to salvage the series finale.

Schmidt is 2-5 with a 5.58 ERA and a 1.60 WHIP this year, so he’s not a safe bet to give the Yankees a quality start. While he’s been a little better lately, it’s still hard to give him the benefit of the doubt, especially with the Yankees just 4-7 in his starts this year. After all, the Mariners have the pieces to do some damage offensively, averaging 5.1 runs per game during their current homestand. Jarred Kelenic has been good all season while Julio Rodriguez, Cal Raleigh, and Ty France have come on strong lately, so the Mariners are positioned to hurt Schmidt.

Seattle also has a chance to cool off the Yankees with George Kirby on the mound. He’s allowed two runs or less in six of 10 starts this year and three runs or less in eight of 10 starts, making him a good candidate to slow down a hot lineup early. Keep in mind that virtually nobody on the Yankees has faced him before, so it could take some time for the Yankees to adjust to him. That’s not something they can afford with Schmidt on the mound, giving the Mariners a big edge in this game.

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Bryan Zarpentine

168 Articles

Bryan Zarpentine is a 2008 graduate of Syracuse University and has been working as a freelance writer and editor since 2010. During that time, he has contributed to countless sites while covering baseball, soccer, the NFL, college football, and college basketball.

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