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e are set up for one of the most exciting weekends of the MLB season. We have multiple matchups with significant playoff implications, highlighted by a series between the NL’s top two teams. We are celebrating by sharing three of our favorite NRFI bets to help you pick winners this weekend.
Our first matchup is one of the key NL Central series of the weekend. The Cubs sit 3.5 games behind the Brewers and three ahead of the Reds. While they have been stringing together a lot of wins, Chicago’s offense has cooled off this week, scoring more than three runs in just one of their five games. The Reds have also been struggling to score runs, being held to three or fewer in five of their six games. While these slumps won’t last forever, we see this pitching matchup keeping them cold tonight.
Javier Assad (3-2, 2.96 ERA) went from the bullpen to the rotation in August and has not disappointed. The righty has a 2.48 ERA through five August starts, allowing no more than two runs in each. Assad has done his best work on the road this season, going 3-0 with a 2.16 ERA. Combine all that with the fact that he threw 3 ⅔ shutout innings against the Reds in July, and you have a recipe for a quiet first inning.
The Reds will send rookie Andrew Abbott (8-4, 3.35 ERA) to the mound tonight. While the 24-year-old had a rough August, we like his chances to bounce back tonight. Abbott has been fantastic at home this season, posting a 2.84 ERA and a .181 opponent batting average. The lefty faced the Cubs in July and struggled, but he had a clean first inning. He has shown how good he can be earlier this season, and he will show it again tonight against a slumping Cubs offense.
Our second matchup features a Houston team fighting for the AL West and a New York team desperate to salvage their season. Both have been hot over the last week, turning things around after slumping earlier in August. Now, both offenses are firing on all cylinders, and they will be primed to go off again tonight against these two pitchers. We saw the Yankees score three runs in the first inning last night, and you can expect to see more action in the opening inning of tonight’s game.
Luis Severino (4-8, 6.64 ERA) will be making the start for the Yankees tonight. The veteran righty missed the beginning of the season with an injury, and he struggled to regain his form after returning, leading to an ugly ERA. However, things have been turning around for Severino of late. He has not allowed a run in his previous two starts (13 ⅔ innings), ending a four-game losing streak in the process. His ERA has been under 3.40 over his last six seasons, and he seems to be turning back into that pitcher late in the season.
The Astros benefited from a fantastic first half of the season from Hunter Brown (10-9, 4.47 ERA), who will be starting tonight. Things have not gone as well since July 1, with Brown posting a 6.07 ERA. The young pitcher has allowed a first-inning run in two of his last four starts while allowing opponents to hit .255 against him the first time through the lineup. That is bad news against a Yankee offense that has rediscovered their confidence.
Our final game does not have playoff implications, but this is too good of an NRFI bet to miss. The Tigers and White Sox have nothing left to play for, and their performance on the field has shown that. Both offenses have been ineffective down the stretch, and it is leading to a lot of losses. It took these two AL Central rivals three innings to score a run last night, and you can expect the same tonight despite an underwhelming pitching matchup.
The White Sox waived Mike Clevinger (6-6, 3.32 ERA), but no one has claimed the veteran right-hander. That does not reflect his play this season, which has been fantastic. He has turned things around after a rough 2022 season that had many questioning what he had left in the tank. Clevinger has an impressive 2.44 ERA across nine home starts, and he shut out the Tigers earlier this season. Given that Detroit has scored the second least runs this season, he should have no problem replicating that tonight.
We don’t necessarily trust Tigers’ starter Reese Olson (2-6, 5.10 ERA), but he will have an easy matchup tonight. The White Sox rank twenty-fifth in the league in runs scored and twentieth in batting average amid an incredibly disappointing season. They expected their offense to perform far better, but things haven’t clicked. Reese made his big league debut against Chicago and held them to two runs on two hits, with both scores coming in the sixth inning. That will give the young pitcher the confidence to start hot against the Sox tonight.
Michael is an avid sports fan and a veteran bettor from Milwaukee. He learned the trade from his grandfather in Las Vegas as a kid and has turned that into a successful career. He cheers for all Wisconsin pro teams along with his Alma Mater Arizona State. He specializes in baseball betting, but has experience in football, basketball, and hockey as well. When he isn’t pouring over stats, he’s spending time with his two young children.More info on Michael Savio
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