Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 1:00 PM EST.
Pittsburgh +120 over Chicago
7:40 PM EST. Bryce Wilson (RHP - PIT) has thrown eight frames this year with four K’s and four BB’s. He has an ERA/xERA split of 5.40/6.11 after posting a 5.35 ERA in 74 innings last year for at Atlanta and Pittsburgh. Wilson Bounced around between AAA and the majors prior to the trade deadline without much success in either place. Given a chance to stick in rotation after the trade to Pittsburgh, he posted a subpar swing and miss rate and his K% dipped further and then he dealt with arm and hamstring issues. Still young, but there's a lot of work to do. We don’t care, as this is simply the report on Wilson and we expect nothing out of him. If he delivers, it’s a bonus. This wager is all about fading a -140 favorite.
We’ll preface it by suggesting that we’re absolutely thrilled that the Pirates were swept in Milwaukee because it gives the impression of same ol’, same ol’, which works in our favor here. The Buccos stock has been so low for so long that they’re not even relevant but what it means is that the prices on them are inflated almost daily. That doesn’t mean we should bet on them every day but there’s no reason not to bet on them here. Before we start, it’s worth noting that the Pirates just faced Eric Lauer, Corbin Burnes and Brandon Woodruff. They take a massive step down in class when facing Mark Leiter Jr (RHP - CHC).
Mark Leiter has started one game this year. Before that, he hadn’t pitched in the majors since 2018. He’s 31 years-old and it’s almost like he hasn’t existed for the past four years. He throws 89 MPH. That would be a straight fastball. It’s a bad pitch and probably the reason he took so long to get to majors. Basically, no velocity or movement (horizontal or vertical). When he did pitch at this level back in 2018, batters scorched the ball and that continued in his first start this year when he was torched for seven runs on five hits with four walks issued across 3.1 innings. His xERA that first start was 7.55, which was the worst ERA among every start by any pitcher this year. Small sample, yes. One game, yes but dude has a history of getting whacked and has never been able to stick in the majors. He was a 22nd-round pick of the Phillies in 2013 and has 117 career innings with a career xERA of 6.22 and a career WHIP of 1.56. Today, Leiter is a bigger price than Carlos Carrasco. Yeah, we know Pittsburgh isn’t San Francisco but the Cubbies aren’t the Mets either.
Pittsburgh +146 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.92)