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The final weekend of the MLB season will kick off on Friday night. Both playoff contenders and non-contenders alike will take the field for their final few games, starting with tonight’s slate of matchups. In those games, there are several opportunities to place quality bets on the NRFI markets.
Our first NRFI bet for Friday comes from the interleague matchup between the Houston Astros and Arizona Diamondbacks. Both of these teams are hoping to hold onto Wild Card spots in their respective leagues when this weekend is in the books. Here, we like both teams to be held scoreless in the first inning in what should be an intriguing matchup between teams looking to make the postseason.
The most notable reason for betting on the NRFI in this matchup is the presence of Zac Gallen on the mound for the Diamondbacks. Gallen has been lights out at home this season, despite his struggles on the road, likely costing him the NL Cy Young award. He should come out strong for the D-Backs in this matchup by holding the Astros scoreless in the top half of the first.
On the other side of this matchup, JP France has been very good on the mound in his own right. France is 11-6 with a 3.83 ERA for the year. He should be able to hold his own in this game to help the Astros stay competitive in what should be one of the games of the night in the major leagues.
Two teams who will not be participating in the playoffs this year are the New York Yankees and Kansas City Royals. The Yankees have been a huge disappointment this season, while the Royals were one of the worst teams in all of baseball. But we like both starting pitchers in this game to find a way to hold their opponent scoreless for the opening inning of play.
Carlos Rodon is on the hill for the Yankees to start this game, which does not always inspire confidence. But the Yankees pitcher should be better than usual in this game due to the opponent he is facing. Against a Royals team that ranks 25th in baseball in runs scored this season, look for Rodon to get off to a better start than usual.
Meanwhile, Jordan Lyles should be able to throw a scoreless first inning as well, despite his monumental struggles this season. Lyles is a miserable 5-17 on the year thus far, but he is facing a Yankees team that ranks 24th in the league in runs scored. Both of these poor offenses will continue to struggle early in this meaningless matchup from Missouri.
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Last up in our NRFI bets for Friday is the huge AL West matchup between the Texas Rangers and Seattle Mariners. Coming into this final series of the season, the Rangers hold the AL West lead, while the Mariners are a game out of the final Wild Card spot in the American League. Both teams will struggle offensively under the weight of this moment.
The pitching matchup for this game will also help contribute to a scoreless first inning, as Nathan Eovaldi takes on Bryan Woo. Eovaldi is 12-4 with a 3.26 ERA on the season thus far, while Woo is 4-5 but has a respectable 4.39 ERA. Look for both men to come out firing early, as they know that anything less than their best on the hill could result in a loss that could lead to the unraveling of the postseason hopes of these teams.
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Jay Sanin is a sports bettor and writer from New York. He has been handicapping since the moment he was old enough to gamble legally, with his specialties being niche sports like the WNBA and XFL. He’s been told he has a voice for radio. He also has a face for radio.More info on Jay Sanin
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