Best NRFI Bets Today, July 6

Written by: Bryan Zarpentine
Published July 6, 2023
5 min read
Best NRFI Bets Today July 06

Chicago Cubs vs Milwaukee Brewers - Marcus Stroman vs Freddy Peralta

Under 0.5 Runs (-130 at DraftKings)

This is a somewhat rare matchup between two teams that both hit NRFI more than 50% of the time. In fact, the Cubs are tied for the third-best NRFI record in the majors at 48-37 (56%). When you factor in a good pitching matchup between Marcus Stroman and Freddy Peralta, a scoreless first inning makes all the sense in the world.

Stroman has had a fantastic season, going 9-6 with a 2.76 ERA heading into his final start of the first half. Even after getting knocked around in his last two starts, Stroman still has a 2.76 ERA. He's also been dominant in the first inning of games, allowing two runs on 10 hits in the first inning of his 18 starts, giving him an ERA of 1.00 in the first inning. Even though he's allowed eight earned runs over nine innings across his last two starts, none of those runs came in the first inning. That trend should continue, especially with the Brewers going cold offensively early in games lately.

On the other hand, Peralta has experienced some ups and downs lately. He posted a modest 4.73 ERA in June and has a 4.67 ERA on the season. Also, the Brewers are just 2-5 in his last seven starts. Nevertheless, Peralta has thrown a scoreless first inning in five consecutive starts. His first-inning ERA is 4.50, which isn’t that spectacular but is mostly a result of a few bad outings rather than consistent struggles in the first inning. The Cubs actually have the fourth-fewest first-inning runs in the majors this season, putting Peralta in a good position to throw a scoreless first inning. See our list of popular MLB betting sites for some exciting betting opportunities!  

Baltimore Orioles vs New York Yankees - Kyle Bradish vs Luis Severino

Under 0.5 Runs (+105 at DraftKings)

With favorable odds for this game, we’re going against the grain a little bit with this pick. However, both the Orioles and Yankees are middle of the pack in NRFI this year, so it’s a toss-up with both teams whether there is first-inning scoring or not. But keep in mind the Yankees are still operating without Aaron Judge and the Orioles have scored the third-fewest first-inning runs in the big leagues. That means it’s worth taking a chance on favorable odds.

Admittedly, there is some risk with Luis Severino starting for the Yankees. In his eight starts this year, he owns a 10.13 ERA, allowing nine runs on 14 hits thanks in part to three first-inning home runs conceded. He also owns a 6.30 ERA after allowing seven earned runs in four innings against the Cardinals in his last start. However, Severino is just one start removed from tossing six scoreless innings against the Rangers. He's also pitched a scoreless first inning in his last three starts, so he appears to have turned a corner, at least early in games.

On the other side, Kyle Bradish is a little more reliable early in games. In his 15 starts this year, Braddish has a 1.80 ERA, conceding just three runs on seven hits. With his 3.58 ERA, Bradish is typically at his best early in games. In fact, he’s pitched 25 innings over his last four starts, allowing just six runs on 17 hits, so he’s been at the top of his game heading into the all-star break. Not surprisingly, Bradish has thrown a scoreless first inning in all four of those starts, doing so against good offensive teams like the Blue Jays and the Rays. Bradish also pitched a scoreless inning when he faced the Yankees earlier this season, so he’s a safe bet to do it again on Thursday.

Kansas City Royals vs Cleveland Guardians - Jordan Lyles vs Tanner Bibee

Under 0.5 Runs (+105 at DraftKings)

This is definitely a contrarian pick because both the Royals and Guardians hit YRFI more times than not. However, both teams also average less than 0.5 runs in the first inning of games. Neither is that strong offensively, so both are good candidates to fail to generate much offense in the first inning on Thursday, making this a good opportunity to take advantage of favorable NRFI odds

Obviously, Jordan Lyles starting for Kansas City screams first-inning runs being scored. But despite his 6.68 ERA, Lyles is coming off his first win of the season. He also posted a 5.40 ERA in June, so things are slowly turning around for him. Oddly enough, Lyles allowed first-inning runs in that game before settling down. But he failed to concede a first-inning run in his three previous starts, so there is some hope for Lyles against the Guardians, who have scored just nine total runs over their last three games.

Meanwhile, Tanner Bibee should be a safe choice to pitch a scoreless first inning against the lowly Royals on Thursday. Opposing hitters are batting just .163 against Bibee in the first inning, leading to a 3.75 first-inning ERA. The 24-year-old is yet to face the Royals, so all of Kansas City’s hitters will be seeing him for the first time. That may not be a recipe for success against a young right with a 3.46 ERA. Bibee is fresh off 5.2 scoreless innings against the Cubs, striking out nine and allowing just three hits. He’s now won his last three starts, so his confidence is high. Obviously, Bibee didn’t allow a first-inning run against the Cubs in that start, and he should be able to replicate that against the Royals on Thursday.

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Bryan Zarpentine

Sports Betting Analyst

Online Sports Betting
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.
Nationality: American
Education: Bachelor of Arts
Favourite Sportsbook: BetMGM Sportsbook
Favourite Casino: BetMGM Casino
14 years
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