World Cup: Can England Solve Sweden’s Stalwart Defense?

England vs. Sweden, 10 a.m. ET, Fox

  • England -112
  • Sweden +390
  • Draw +225

Bet to Watch:

England To Win By 1 Goal +246 

After England won only their second of eight major tournament penalty shootouts, and first at a World Cup, the English media are starting to believe that anything is possible. “Football’s coming home” as far as fans of the Three Lions  are concerned, but if their team is to lift the trophy for the first time in more than 50 years, there are a few roadblocks still to overcome.

Sweden are, without question, a favorable quarterfinal opponent, but that’s not to say Saturday’s match in Samara will be plain sailing for Gareth Southgate’s men. It never is as far as England are concerned, nor is it when they come to blows with this weekend’s challengers.

England have, after all, won just one of their last eight competitive meetings with the Swedes, who have developed a liking for what has become a familiar underdog status under coach Janne Andersson. Indeed, since exiting Euro 2016 and waving goodbye to their greatest-ever player in Zlatan Ibrahimovic, there has been a realization that without a star name to call upon, the players have needed to accept their limitations and, in a roundabout way, turn that into a strength.

The Scandinavians have shown this summer and well beforehand just how difficult they are to break down, simply by sticking to their rigid positions when out of possession and sitting deep. In the past 18 months, they’ve beaten Portugal, France and Italy, so they aren’t to be underestimated, keeping five clean sheets in their last six matches.

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It’s relatively clear how the pattern of this match will play out, with Sweden having had a lower possession share (36%) at this World Cup than any of the remaining teams. Plus, they’re well-aware that England are struggling to create meaningful chances from open play.

England have the tournament’s top scorer in their ranks, and Harry Kane will know that if he can add to his six-goal tally, he may well wrap up the Golden Boot. While there are those who will point to his duties as the penalty-kick taker as the main reason for his success this summer, he’s taken the chances that have come his way. Plus, his performance against Colombia was arguably the Tottenham star’s best all-around display of the tournament.

Sweden may have conceded only twice, but they have allowed their opponents the most shots on goal (61) of the quarterfinalists, and Kane doesn’t need a second invitation to shoot or indeed score. With odds over evens on the striker to do so at any time, that’s a bet that’s well worth considering, but I like the winning margin odds for England in this one.

It’s never straightforward when they are involved, after all, and Southgate’s charges are the only side remaining that are yet to keep a clean sheet. While their quality should win out, you can bank on a tight result, so England to win by exactly one goal would be my tip.

2022 Travelers Championship Round 3 Odds & Picks: Buy Rory McIlroy to Bounce Back

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It was a tale of two nines for Rory McIlroy on Friday as he was the story of the second round of the Travelers Championship. He was cruising right along after a 31 on his opening nine holes and another birdie at the par-3 11th. He then inexplicably lost much of his good work on the 12th hole right as I praised him on Twitter. Some are blaming me for the snowman he posted and the four dropped shots that eventually put him back where he started the day at 8-under.

The day instead turned into a big one for Xander Schauffele, who ran away from the field and has a five-shot lead through 36 holes after he matched his opening round 63 with another on Friday. He’ll get paired with his best friend on Saturday in the final tee time as Patrick Cantlay is his lead contender at 9-under on the week. Cantlay leads a group of five players, which includes defending champion Harris English, at that score through two rounds.

Schauffele’s struggles closing out leads has been well documented in recent years, meaning we may be in for an interesting weekend at TPC River Highlands. The Olympic Gold Medalist will look to capture his first solo TOUR win since the 2019 Sentry Tournament of Champions. This could go a long way toward getting the monkey off of his back if he can get it done this weekend.

I’ll certainly be looking to buy the chasers as we roll into Saturday and I’m hopeful Schauffele’s big edge will give us some good odds. Let’s take a look at how the data stands as the tournament heads to Moving Day.

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Strokes Gained Explanation

Strokes Gained can give golf bettors, DFS players and fans way more detail on how a golfer has truly played by measuring each shot in relation to the rest of the field.

Using the millions of data points it collects, the TOUR calculates how many shots on average it takes a player to get the ball in the hole from every distance and situation. If a player beats those averages, he’s gaining strokes on the field.

Every situation in golf is different. Strokes Gained measures how players perform relative to the situation.

In this piece, we’ll touch on a variety of Strokes Gained metrics:

  • Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee
  • Strokes Gained: Approach
  • Strokes Gained: Around-the-Green
  • Strokes Gained: Putting
  • Strokes Gained: Ball-Striking (which is Off-the-Tee + Approach)
  • Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green (which is Ball-Striking + Around-the-Green)

In general, SG: Ball Striking and SG: Tee-to-Green are the most stable long term, while putting is more prone to volatility.

You can often find live-betting advantages by identifying golfers who are hitting the ball well, but are just not getting putts to drop. Likewise, players with high SG: Putting numbers may regress moving forward.

3 Golfers to Buy in Round 3

The interesting part of this type of scenario is that if you’re betting down the board and saying that Schauffele won’t get it done, then it really brings a ton of players into the mix. There are 22 players within three shots of second place as they go to the weekend. We’ve got a mix of up-and-comers and more established names in that group and I’ll try to target one of each.

If we are looking for a big name to chase down Schauffele, my eyes are on McIlroy. I know he’s probably dragging a bit in his fourth straight tournament and after a disappointing and shocking day on Friday, but it’s impossible to ignore the rest of his play. He’s been phenomenal outside of those two holes and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it spark him a bit Saturday. I’m not exactly running to buy him at +800, but I think others may go a little too heavily on the narrative for DFS and possibly in odds for matchups in Round 3. I’ll take my shot McIlroy bounces back and only part of that is feeling bad because I totally mushed him on Friday.

Sahith Theegala sticks out for some value for me at 8-under as he is six shots back going into Saturday. He is listed at +5000 at most books and is a player who has shown the ability to contend in the weeks that he brings his game. He was right there early in the year at the Waste Management and this could be another good experience mark for him if he can stay in the mix this weekend. Theegala gained better than three shots on the field on approach in the second round and only lost strokes on four approach shots throughout the entire round. If he can keep that going and put it together with a hot putter, he can put himself in one of the final groups going into Sunday.


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Brendan Steele is the buy I am looking at further down the leaderboard as he has been really solid throughout the start of the week tee to green, but is still searching for it a bit with his putter. He ranks third in the field in SG: Tee-to-Green and was the best on the day on Friday. He shot a nice 4-under 66, but his better than three shots lost on the greens highlights just how strong of a round it could have been.

Steele was a popular pick coming into the week off of consecutive top 10 finishes and he is now positioned to have a shot at another. That’s the market I would look at for him as well as any short term matchups and DFS going into Saturday.

3 Golfers to Fade in Round 3

I’m doubling down on English. I still have the exact same concerns for the defending champion after Round 2 as I did after the first day. He is relying almost entirely on his short game to keep him in the hunt and unless he finds something on the range with his ball striking, it’s hard to imagine that turning. English has been out of the game for a long time and the added pressure of a late afternoon weekend tee time will only put more weight on that putter. I just don’t see him sustaining his spot at this stage, but it is certainly a good sign for him turning things around going forward.

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JT Poston looks like the player most likely to fall from the top 10 as we head into the weekend. He stormed out in the opening round and came back to earth a bit on Friday. His issues have always been around the ball striking as he just needs enough to get him on the greens to use that usually hot putter. Unfortunately for Poston, getting to the green started to become an issue in the second round. He lost nearly a full stroke to the field tee-to-green on Friday and really struggled to get off the tee. I expect we will continue to see him slip as play heads into the weekend in Cromwell, CT.

There are going to be a number of players who will be able to jockey for position up the leaderboard this weekend even if they aren’t likely to win. Placement position markets will be a great spot to take advantage and finding the fades is just as important as finding the buys. Wyndham Clark and Thomas Thorbjornsen are two guys who stick out as fades for Saturday. I’ll highlight Thjorbjornsen since he’s further up the board, but both players are in similar positions.

Thjorbjornsen has relied mostly on his short game and driver this week. He has seemingly rolled in every putt needed as he is losing strokes on the field on approach. I expect we see him and Clark drop away from the top 20 the rest of the way at the Travelers.

Strokes Gained Data for All Players in Round 2

2022 Travelers Championship Third Round PrizePicks Plays: Rory McIlroy Among 5 Saturday Picks

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Xander Schauffele is currently T1 with a commanding five-stroke lead at 14-under par following the second round of the Travelers Championship. Now, we look forward to Saturday’s third round, which features plenty of prop angles to attack on PrizePicks.

Below, I give out my five PrizePicks flex plays for the third round of the 2022 Travelers Championship. For those unfamiliar with flex plays in golf, different combinations of overs and unders generate different payouts.

Using the five plays below, getting five-of-five correct registers a 12.5x payout, four-of-five correct registers a 2x payout and three-of-five correct registers a 0.4x payout.

PrizePicks Plays

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Rory McIlroy: Round 3 Under 66.5 Strokes

Currently, Rory McIlroy is T7 at 8-under par after shooting a 70 on Friday. That being said, I expect a big bounce back from McIlroy on Saturday.

McIlroy has dominated this tournament except for a meltdown on two holes on Friday. Recording a quadruple bogey on 12 and a double bogey on 15, McIlroy’s round was ruined as he shot a 39 on the back.

However, McIlroy was once again on pace for another great day as he was 4-under par at the turn. On Thursday, McIlroy shot a 62, a score much more consistent with his play this tournament if you take out those two massively-outlier holes.

I would play this total down to 66.

Scottie Scheffler: Round 3 Under 66.5 Strokes

Another powerhouse golfer I am backing Saturday is Scottie Scheffler. Currently, Scheffler is T24 at 5-under par after shooting a 67 on Friday.

While Scheffler has failed to break this total in each of the first two rounds, we should see some positive regression over the weekend. Scheffler’s putter, which certainly will figure itself out, was his only detriment through the first two rounds.

Amongst the field, Scheffler ranks just 119th in SG: Putting through the first two rounds. However, the rest of his game has been outstanding as he ranks 17th in SG: Around-the-Green, 64th in SG: Approach-the-Green, fifth in SG: Off-the-Tee, and eighth in SG: Tee-to-Green.

Additionally, Scheffler ranks third in Greens in Regulation and 11th in Driving Accuracy. Those putts will start falling for Scheffler and when they do he should be able to fly back up the leaderboard.

I would not play this number any lower than 66.5.

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Keegan Bradley: Round 3 Under 68 Strokes

The last golfer I am backing on Saturday is Keegan Bradley. Currently, Bradley is T60 at 2-under par after shooting a 69 on Friday.

While Bradley’s metrics thus far put him right around where he is sitting, I would not be shocked if he gets better play from his irons on Saturday. Iron play is essential at TPC River Highlands, as evidenced by the last five winners at this tournament.

Here is how the previous five champions ranked amongst their field in SG: Tee-to-Green and SG: Approach-the-Green: 3rd/32nd, 7th/7th, 2nd/1st, 2nd/29th, and 1st/9th. Clearly, iron play is essential at this course.

This should be beneficial for Bradley as he has been excellent with his irons this season. On TOUR, Bradley ranks 24th in SG: Tee-to-Green and 38th in SG: Approach-the-Green.

I would not play this total lower than 68.

Harris English: Round 3 Over 67 Strokes

I am also fading a couple of golfers on Saturday, starting with last year’s champion, Harris English. Currently, English is T2 at 9-under par after shooting a 65 on Friday.

That being said, English’s metrics on Friday were awful outside of his putting as he was draining everything. Amongst the field on Friday, English ranked fifth in SG: Putting.

However, the rest of his game struggled as English ranked just 61st in SG: Around-the-Green, 66th in SG: Approach-the-Green, 95th in SG: Off-the-Tee, and 66th in SG: Tee-to-Green. That 65 is not sustainable with those metrics and we could see some big regression on Saturday if the rest of his game struggles again.

I would not play this number higher than 67.

Webb Simpson: Round 3 Over 67.5 Strokes

The other golfer I am fading Saturday is Webb Simpson. Currently, Simpson is T16 at 7-under par after shooting a 69 on Friday.

Friday was a much tougher day for Simpson as he dropped six strokes relative to Thursday, a trend that could continue into the weekend. With momentum obviously not on his side, Simpson would need a big bounceback to go under this total as his metrics took a massive dip Friday.

Between rounds one and two, Simpson saw a 124% decrease in SG: Putting, a 251% decrease in SG: Around-the-Green, a 31% decrease in SG: Approach-the-Green, a 6% decrease in SG: Off-the-Tee and a 58% decrease in SG: Tee-to-Green. With a decrease in production across every single metric, I would be shocked if Simpson bounces back by a two-stroke margin on Saturday.

I would play this total up to 68.

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College World Series Odds & Picks: How to Bet Ole Miss vs. Oklahoma In College Baseball Championship

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Ole Miss vs. Oklahoma

June 25-27
Ole Miss -130
Oklahoma +110

Projected Starting Pitchers & Head-to-Head Projections

  • Saturday, June 25: Jake Bennett (Oklahoma) v Hunter Elliott (Ole Miss)
  • Sunday, June 26: John Gaddis (Ole Miss) v Cade Horton (Oklahoma)
  • Monday, June 27 (If Necessary): David Sandlin (Oklahoma) v Dylan DeLucia (Ole Miss)


Even though the Ole Miss campus in Oxford sits just east of the wet delta that is the Mississippi River, a dry run of championships has hit the University of Mississippi.

Sure, the Ole Miss cheer squad won the national title back in January of this calendar year, but for the big three sports, it has been as dry as the Oklahoma panhandle.

Speaking of the 46th state, Oklahoma has enjoyed plenty of success in multiple sports on the national stage. While the women’s softball team has won six national titles, including each of the past two, the baseball team has been in a draught.

This year’s Sooners look to become the university’s third champion after winning it all in 1951 and 1994.

The story is always the same heading into the College World Series championship round. Both teams have great pitching and timely hitting.

While most journalists will expand on how great the teams have been with clutch hitting and quality starting pitching, bettors are forced to look at advanced statistics from Omaha to pick a winner.

Our projections for each individual pitching matchup are based on season-long ERA and WHIP numbers, along with the bullpen element.

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The real story is that Dylan DeLucia may not be available for this series after defeating Arkansas on Thursday and hurling 114 pitches in a complete-game shutout. That leaves a bevy of left-handed pitching that will dominate the narrative in the championship round.

Oklahoma’s Jake Bennett is the southpaw in the Sooners’ starting pitching rotation, and he’s accompanied by Carter Campbell in the bullpen. Ole Miss will look to lefty Hunter Elliott to start the first game, while fellow southpaw John Gaddis will start Game 2.

The key to most College World Series sits upon each starter’s ability to locate, bullpens that shut games down and lineups that can hit left-handed pitching.

Oklahoma has lost only two games since postseason play began on May 25 — an offensive slugfest against Virginia Tech at English Field in the Super Regional and a loss to Florida in the Gainesville Regional.

The loss to the Gators is of most importance, as lefty Timmy Manning was quickly taken out in favor of lefty Carsten Finnvold. At the time, Finnvold had pitched just nine innings on the season and owned an ERA and FIP over 7.50.

Finnvold recorded all 27 outs in relief, limiting the Sooners’ right-handed hitters to a 2-for-23 performance.

There could be plenty of reasons for the Sooners’ demise, with the best explanation being that head coach Skip Johnson didn’t prepare for a member of the Florida staff who was rarely used.

The better explanation may be the struggles against left-handed pitching.

Oklahoma’s other loss in the past month came against Virginia Tech in the Regionals. While plenty of runs were scored in the game, the Hokies threw left-handed reliever Jonah Hurney for four innings. Hurney allowed one earned run and recorded seven strikeouts.

That completes a theme: The Sooners can’t hit left-handed pitching.

Ole Miss will have its hands full with Oklahoma ace Jake Bennett, but no one can deny that this is the hottest team in college baseball.

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The Rebels managed to post an earned run in five innings against Arkansas’ Hagen Smith, another lefty hurler. In previous bouts against left-handed pitching, Ole Miss throttled Arizona’s Eric Orloff and generated four walks in a victory over Miami’s Carson Palmquist.

The opening game featuring Ole Miss’ Elliott against Oklahoma’s Bennett should be an automatic play on the under, but the Rebels’ ability to draw walks and rack up timely hits against lefties is the difference.

In Game 2, Oklahoma starter Cade Horton would be an underdog to any pitcher head coach Mike Bianco puts on the mound.

Because two lefty starters are scheduled for the first two games, the edge in this series goes to the Rebels. If Oklahoma forces a Game 3 on Monday, an opportunistic spot would emerge with DeLucia on short rest.

With the lack of left-handed pitching on the Sooners’ staff, Ole Miss will claim its first national championship in Division I baseball.

Pick: Game 1 Under 11 or Better · Ole Miss to Win Series

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Astros vs. Yankees MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Houston Bullpen Has the Edge (Saturday, June 25)

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Astros vs. Yankees Odds

Astros Odds +110
Yankees Odds -130
Over/Under 9 (+100/-120)
Time 1:05 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Cristian Javier has flown under the radar among the baseball media this season. On Saturday, he and the Astros face off against Gerrit Cole and the New York Yankees.

The 25-year-old Houston Astros pitcher has put together an encouraging start to his 2022 campaign as he owns a 3.07 ERA and 3.17 xERA, so expectations are right in line with results. His one problem has been issuing walks (9.9%), but as long as he can find the zone, he will induce weak contact and get a quality start.

Cole is shockingly similar. He has a 3.14 ERA and 2.94 xERA, so the two are neck-and-neck. Cole’s issue has been permitting Hard Contact at times. He ranks in the bottom half of the league in Average Exit Velocity, so the Astros might be a tough matchup for him.

Given this, does taking the Astros on the moneyline present good value in this matinee matchup?

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Javier and the Astros Bullpen Are Surging

Cristian Javier is a promising young arm. His xBA is only .204, so the Yankees have a tough matchup in store. Still, they do own a MLB-best 151 wRC+ in June off of right-handers. Luckily, Javier only has a 35.3% Hard Hit Rate, so he could mitigate the damage from the Yankee lineup.

The Yankees have 10 hitters over a .330 xwOBA. They are stacked top-to-bottom, and being at home will definitely help them. At one point, someone in this lineup will have to struggle. Astros manager Dusty Baker has not been shy to pull the plug on a Javier start if he cannot locate the strike zone, so the bullpen needs to be taken into consideration for this handicap.

Houston has the third-best xFIP in the MLB out of the ‘pen this month. They average over 10 K/9, so they should miss plenty of Yankee bats, as well. Blake Taylor and Parker Mushinski were having some trouble, but both have landed on the Injured List. Ryan Pressly, Hector Neris, and Brandon Bielak are above a 4.00 xFIP, so this is concerning for the back-end of the bullpen, but the Astros have multiple relievers to fill in after Javier leaves the ballgame.

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Yankees Are Vulnerable Behind Cole in the Bullpen

Cole has been rock solid this season for the Yankees. He has been consistent, hovering around the same ERA for three months now. That said, Houston owns a 140 wRC+ off of righties this season, so he is in store for a potentially brutal matchup.

Jeremy Peña is out for the Astros, but this lineup has not skipped a beat. Mauricio Dubón has a .384 xwOBA off of righties in June in Peña’s absence, and Yordan Álvarez has a .674 xwOBA in that same span. Kyle Tucker, Michael Brantley, and Alex Bregman are all above the .400 mark, and José Altuve is above .330. This is a difficult top of the order to navigate for Cole. There is a decent chance he could leave this game early due to troubles against these boppers.

The Yankee bullpen has some noteworthy injuries. Jonathan Loáisiga is on the 15-day IL, while Stephen Ridings, Domingo Germán, Zack Britton, and Chad Green are on the 60-day IL. The Yankees have succeeded without these arms, but sooner or later, they will have some issues. They own a 4.06 xFIP as a team, so this is one glaring weakness for an otherwise untouchable New York roster. The Astros have a strong lineup, so if they force Cole out of this game early, they should take advantage of a hobbled Yankee bullpen.

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Astros-Yankees Pick

Both of these starters are great, but they have their issues. Javier is about equal to Cole, and that is all a bettor needs to know going into this game.

The Astros bullpen has fewer injuries and weak spots, so they get the edge if Javier leaves early versus Cole. Since the Houston lineup is so potent at the top, taking them at +110 and playing to -110 is the right call.

Pick: Houston Astros Moneyline (+110) | play to (-110)

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‘We Got Smoked’: Oddsmakers React to Crazy NBA Draft

The 2022 NBA Draft will go down in history as one of the most nauseating events ever to set odds on.

Unprecedented topsy-turvy betting movement on who the Orlando Magic would select with the No. 1 overall pick sent oddsmakers into a week-long tizzy they’d never fully recover from.

“We got smoked,” said Andy Morrissey, a trader at WynnBet.

For months, nearly every mock draft had Jabari Smith Jr. as the prohibitive favorite to go No. 1 and the betting odds reflected that. But after surprise money started coming in on Paolo Banchero just a few days before the draft prices flipped and uncertainty ran rampant.

“This draft was different,” said Sam Garriock, Trading Manager at PointsBet. “There was less publicly-available information out there — or at least the stuff that was out there was incorrect — and therefore we had to be very responsive to money.”

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Slews of big bets on each prospect caused Banchero’s and Smith’s odds to fluctuate throughout the week, until Thursday night when the dust settled and Banchero went No. 1.

“If I were to base the scale on how unique it is a week or so before the draft, it would have to be an eight or nine,” said Motoi Pearson, a senior trader at Wynn Bet. “Paolo moving from 20/1 to the favorite within a couple days is just as aggressive as I’ve seen in the last drafts I’ve booked.”

How Oddsmakers React to Big Bets

After the first wave of sharp money on Sunday, PointsBet dropped Banchero from +1000 all the way down to +225 by Monday evening.  On Wednesday, he shot back up to +425 after another wave of sharp money — this time on Smith, who moved to -450.

“There could be certain bettors moving the line to cause an overreaction, but if they’re betting on something you must respect the money behind it,” Pearson said. “There can be information we aren’t aware of.”

Oddsmakers must consider whether huge bets signal there’s been a change in expected outcome, but it’s “really all about where we want to sit relative to the rest of the market and how it changes our fair price,” Garriock of PointsBet said.

But not all oddsmakers are the same. Michael Ranftle, a sports trader at BetMGM, leans on his customers more than the market.

“It’s best to just work with what the bettors are telling us rather than try to stay close to other market prices,” Ranftle said. “The books don’t know too much more than the players.”

How Oddsmakers React to the Media

Less than 13-hours before the draft Smith’s odds slipped to +130 — their best price yet at PointsBet — while Banchero was the favorite at -230.

A few minutes later, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski — widely considered the most plugged in NBA Insider in the world — seemingly put an end to the chaos.

“The media reports dictate a lot of the bettors behavior so we’re mostly watching our players, but also keeping an eye out for news,” Ranftle said.

After Woj’s tweet books closed their markets and came back later with totally different prices … again.

At PointsBet, Banchero was back to +300 and Smith was once again the favorite at -476. At FanDuel, Smith moved to an unbeatable -10000, while Banchero moved to a juicy +1000.

But Woj, wasn’t done. Less than an hour before the draft he tweeted again.

Oddsmakers finally had enough. A few minutes later they pulled odds on the bet. But the damage was done. Banchero, the underdog throughout most of the month and once again at the bitter end, was the winning bet.

Woj spent the rest of the draft tweeting out who each team would pick before they did so. He’s not often wrong, which is why the events leading up to Banchero’s selection left so many scratching their heads.

“Obviously, you have to stay up to date with the media, but you also have to understand incentives for leaks,” Garriock said. “An important part of last night’s result was that Woj very clearly was reporting what other GMs thought [Orlando] would do, based upon actions that had come from their team — trade calls for example.”

Good bettors try to identify a source and place their motivation, he added. “A good trader will be doing something similar.”

Here’s the final breakdown of how much each sportsbook took on either guy:

Paolo Banchero

Sportsbook Tickets (Bets) Handle ($)
WynnBet 54.5% 43.4%
PointsBet 20.2% 12.4%
BetMGM 22.8% 11.9%

Jabari Smith Jr.

Sportsbook Tickets (Bets) Handle ($)
WynnBet 20.7% 50.9%
PointsBet 47.6% 81.2%
BetMGM 34.3% 70.7%


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Draft Oddsmaking Stands Alone

Thursday night’s events are a microcosm of why oddsmaking — like betting —  the draft is so unique compared to everything else that gets wagered on.

There’s no stat-based formula or betting model with x or y return on investment.

Instead it’s much more akin to an awards race, like MVP or Defensive Player of the Year, where oddsmakers are trying to guess how the media will vote, Garriock said.

But even awards races are easier to set lines on than the draft, as oddsmakers have a year’s worth of statistics and line movement to base decisions off of, Pearson said.

He called the NBA Draft a headache, but added that he enjoyed the challenge.

USFL Picks: Expert Likes Sal Cannella, Bo Scarbrough, Darius Victor, More Props On PrizePicks For Playoffs

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Sean Koerner, our Director of Predictive Analytics, highlights his top USFL props to target on PrizePicks for the first round of the playoffs. He has a 27-7 record on picks he’s written about so far this season.

Below are his top props on PrizePicks this week.


What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in 30+ states! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more together.

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Postseason USFL Picks

Sal Cannella Under 35.5 Receiving Yards

The Breakers passing game has been trending down since Week 4, which is why Cannella has only cleared this number twice in the past six games. Another reason his production has taken a hit is that backup tight end Justin Johnson has seen an increase in playing time over the past few games. I’m projecting him closer to 27.5 receiving yards.
Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

Darius Victor Over 50.5 Rushing Yards

The Generals are a run-heavy team facing the league’s worst run defense in the first round of the playoffs. I expect them to lean on their run game, specifically Victor, who has been their top running back all season. His usage was down the past few games, but I suspect they were trying to keep him fresh once they clinched a playoff berth. I’m projecting him closer to 60.5 rushing yards. 
Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

Bo Scarbrough Over 40.5 Rushing Yards

Like Darius Victor, I suspect the Stallions wanted to limit Scarbrough’s workload once they clinched a playoff berth. I expect Scarbrough to see 11-13 rush attempts against the Breakers, which should be enough for him to clear this number. I’m projecting him closer to 50.5 rushing yards.
Confidence Rating: 7 out of 10

Jordan Suell Under 40.5 Receiving Yards

New Jersey should dominate time of possession as they will be able to run all over the Stars’ weak run defense. It will limit the overall volume of the Stars offense that loves to spread the ball around in the passing game. I’m projecting Suell’s receiving yards closer to 32.5.
Confidence Rating: 6 out of 10

MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: 6 Best Bets From Friday’s Slate, Including Phillies vs. Padres, Reds vs. Giants (June 24)

mlb odds-picks-predictions-best bets-reds vs giants-june 24

Ladies and gentlemen, the weekend.

It’s Friday night and the Major League Baseball slate is loaded with appealing betting options. Six of our analysts are on three of the games, and they’re all out west: Phillies vs. Padres, Tigers vs. Diamondbacks and Reds vs. Giants.

We have moneylines, run lines, first fives and player props in what sets up to be an extremely profitable start to the weekend.

Here are our six best bets from Friday night’s Major League Baseball slate.

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MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Phillies Moneyline
9:40 p.m. ET
Tigers-Diamondbacks Total
9:40 p.m. ET
Diamondbacks First Five
9:40 p.m. ET
Giants First Five
10:15 p.m. ET
Giants Run Line
10:15 p.m. ET
Alex Cobb Strikeouts
10:15 p.m. ET

Philadelphia Phillies vs. San Diego Padres

Pick
Phillies -123
Book
WynnBET
Pitchers
Aaron Nola vs. MacKenzie Gore
First Pitch
9:40 p.m. ET

Charlie DiSturco: Who doesn’t love some Friday night action out on the west coast?

The San Diego Padres look to bounce back against the Philadelphia Phillies in the second of a four-game series, sending rookie MacKenzie Gore to the mound opposite ace Aaron Nola.

Nola has been one of my favorite pitchers to back in 2022. Over the last three starts, he’s given up just two runs over 23 innings and his ERA has dropped all the way down to 3.11.

The crazy part? He’s still underperforming according to expected indicators.

His xERA is down at 2.73, and his xFIP is 2.89. Opponents have a .219 xBA against Nola, who is having his best season since 2018. The right-hander’s walk rate is a career-best 3.2 percent, and he remains around the 30 percent mark in strikeout rate.

Nola will be matched up with Gore, who has been torn apart over his last couple of starts. The southpaw has given up 14 runs over the last 6 1/3 innings, as his ERA ballooned up to 3.64.

But there’s still room for negative regression, as Gore’s xERA is 4.07. His walk rate is in the double digits and he is in the bottom 20 percent of all pitchers in hard-hit rate.

That is a problem against a Phillies offense that dominates against left-handed pitching. They rank sixth in wRC+, fifth in wOBA and fourth in isolated power versus southpaws.

The Padres, meanwhile, rank 17th in wRC+ and 25th in isolated power against righties. Manny Machado’s status also remains unknown as he’s been sidelined with an ankle injury.

I love the Phillies to roll on Friday night behind Nola, as they have the clear advantage both on the mound and at the plate. Bet this to -140.

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Detroit Tigers vs. Arizona Diamondbacks

Pick
Under 8.5 (+100)
Book
BetMGM
Pitchers
Rony Garcia vs. Merrill Kelly
First Pitch
9:40 p.m. ET

DJ James: These are the two worst offenses coming into this game against right-handed pitching in the month of June. Detroit is the worst at 58 wRC+, while Arizona has posted a paltry 61 wRC+. Both have a sub-.260 team OBP and sub-.340 team slugging percentage.

Rony García and Merrill Kelly will be the starters for the Tigers and D’backs, respectively. García is definitely the weaker of the two. He does rank in the bottom percentile in some important predictive metrics (i.e. average exit velocity, xwOBA, etc.), but the one captivating thing about the 24-year-old is he does not walk many batters, and he ranks in the 78th percentile in strikeout rate.

On the other hand, Kelly is solid. He has a 3.46 ERA and 3.59 xERA with a .299 wOBA and 35.3% hard hit rate. This should be enough to hold a moribund Detroit offense at bay.

Take the under and hope García can hold it together for a little while.

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Detroit Tigers vs. Arizona Diamondbacks

Pick
Diamondbacks First Five Innings -0.5 (-130)
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Rony Garcia vs. Merrill Kelly
First Pitch
9:40 p.m. ET

Nicholas Martin: Rony Garcia has ran with some very favorable luck to hold an era of 4.97 throughout 38 IP this season, and is as clear a fade candidate as exists in the majors for the time being.

Garcia has been barreled up 20% of the time, which has led to a shocking xSLG rate of .684, and both of those marks are among the very worst in the league from a pitcher with any sort of meaningful sample.

Same goes for Garcia’s shocking QOPA of 3.76, which heavily suggests batters are not likely to have a tough time making contact anytime soon.

Garcia will be backed by the league’s worst offence as well, which has hit to a wRC+ of just 68 versus right-handed pitching this season, with a wOBA of .261.

The Tigers will be offensively challenged against a very respectable righty in Merrill Kelly in this one, which is a massive pitching edge for the D’backs.

Take Arizona’s run line through the first five innings.

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Cincinnati Reds vs. San Francisco Giants

Pick
Giants First Five Innings -188
Book
FanDuel
Pitchers
Graham Ashcraft vs. Alex Cobb
First Pitch
10:15 p.m. ET

Sean Zerillo: Alex Cobb (5.62 ERA, 2.24 xERA, 2.64 xFIP, 2.92 SIERA) has been one of the most unlucky starters in baseball this season. The Giants’ righty is carrying a .381 BABIP and a 55% strand rate (career .295 and 72%, respectively), explaining the drastic difference between his ERA and expected indicators.

Cobb’s fastball velocity (95 mph) stands at a career-high mark, 3.3 mph over his career average, and his underlying metrics have never been better.

Among the 198 pitchers who have tossed at least 30 innings this season, Cobb ranks 40th (80th percentile) in strikeout minus walk rate, or K-BB% and 27th (87th percentile) in called-strike plus whiff rate, or CSW%.

Conversely, Graham Ashcraft ranks 170th (15th percentile) and 158th (20th percentile) in those two key metrics. And while Ashcraft has pitched well (3.51 ERA, 3.45 xERA, 3.91 xFIP, 4.14 SIERA) and generates a high number of groundballs (56%), he’s unlikely to maintain a .261 BABIP (league average .287) in front of the Reds porous defense (22nd in Defensive Runs Saved, 24th in Outs Above Average).

I projected the Giants’ moneyline for the first five innings at -228 (69.5% implied) for Friday night, and I would bet that F5 line up to -208 (67.5% implied) at a two percent edge.

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Cincinnati Reds vs. San Francisco Giants

Pick
Giants -1.5 (+105)
Book
Caesars
Pitchers
Graham Ashcraft vs. Alex Cobb
First Pitch
10:15 p.m. ET

Doug Ziefel: The league has begun to adjust to Graham Ashcraft. Yes, he has tremendous stuff and produces a great deal of soft contact, but the amount of contact is starting to catch up to him.

He’s allowed 10 earned runs on 17 hits over his last two starts. Now he’ll get to go on the road and face a Giants lineup that features two hot-hitting lefties in Joc Pederson and Mike Yastrzemski.

Opposing him will be Alex Cobb, who has pitched far better than his 5.62 ERA portrays. Cobb enters this start in the top eight percent of all qualified pitchers in every expected Statcast statistic and is in the top 13 percent in average exit velocity allowed as well as hard-hit rate.

He’ll face a weakened Cincinnati lineup, which only has one hitter in its lineup with an xBA above .270. The Reds also have quite a bit of swing and miss in their lineup, and Cobb revamped stuff has had him averaging over a strikeout per inning.

This is a game where we’ll see the Giants with constant traffic on the bases, and their lead will only get larger as the game goes on.

Cobb is well overdue for a solid outing, and the lowly Reds are the lineup to get him back on track. Play the run line to +100.

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Cincinnati Reds vs. San Francisco Giants

Pick
Alex Cobb Over 4.5 Strikeouts (+105)
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Graham Ashcraft vs. Alex Cobb
First Pitch
10:15 p.m. ET

Jules Posner: Alex Cobb’s K total is set at 4.5, which seems really low. Suspiciously low. Could be a trap, but I say, “Trap me, baby.”

So far in home starts, Cobb has struck out 10, 0, 8, 6, and 7. Obviously, one of these numbers is not like the others, but barring a catastrophe, Cobb has racked up K’s at home this season.

Cobb has also been one of the least lucky starters in MLB this season. Among starters, Cobb has the highest difference in xERA bs ERA as well as xBA vs BA. Dude just can’t catch a break.

While it is risky to back an incredibly unlucky pitcher, his 2.59 home FIP and and 12.68 K/9 at home don’t require much luck. Even if he experiences more tough luck, he still gets a fair amount of outs via the strikeout. Perhaps it’s possible that if batted balls find defenders, his K rates may suffer, but his stuff has been sharp this season.

The Reds are not a prolific strikeout offense as they are in the bottom half of the league in K% on the road vs RHP over the past few weeks. They still strike out 20% of the time, so if Cobb can get through two and a half turns through the line up, 4.5 K’s seems achievable.

The fact that this prop is in plus money makes it seem to good to be true. However, Action Labs rates this an 8/10, projecting 5.3 K’s, and Julesyboy Labs (my cat) gives it a 10/10 and projects 7 K’s.

This can be played from -120 or better.

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Lightning vs. Avalanche Odds, Best Bets: 3 Picks for Stanley Cup Game 5, Including an Andrei Vasilevskiy Prop

nhl-lightning vs. avalanche-odds-picks-best bets-player props-stanley cup game 5-valeri nichushkin-andrei vasilevskiy-june 24

NHL betting analyst Nicholas Martin has found three plays ahead of Friday’s pivotal Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Colorado Avalanche.

From a total to two player props, Martin has you covered for Game 5 below.

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Andrei Vasilevskiy Over 33.5 Saves · -120 (Play to -125)

Colorado has played at a pace nobody in the league can match all season, and the result has been a ridiculous amount of shots on goal.

In Game 4, we saw the Avalanche take some time to fully settle in, but by the time overtime came around, it was a full-blown onslaught. With the Cup in the building Friday, I expect Colorado to come out firing.

Colorado managed 34.6 shots on goal in the two series-opening contests in Denver, but that average came with Game 2 being an early blowout. Essentially, Colorado didn’t need to press for more offense.

I think Tampa Bay will hang around in this one and make it a game, but it’s hard to see Colorado not generating a ton of attempts on goal and sticking to its high-tempo style of play.

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Valeri Nichushkin Anytime Point · -130 (Play to -140)

Wherever Nichushkin has slotted into the Colorado lineup this postseason he has been quietly brilliant. He was effective again in Game 4 on a newly-formed unit with Gabriel Landeskog and Nazem Kadri, which controlled play to a 73.1 xGF%.

Nichushkin is one of the better forecheckers in the entire league right now, and his intelligent, aggressive puck-pursuit has generated a ton of opportunities for his side all series.

I suggested playing this in Game 4 at -140, and it was simply unlikely to miss considering what Nichushkin created, including a would-be game-winning assist on Bowen Byram’s crossbar shot in overtime.

We are now getting a price of -130 in a spot where I feel Colorado is far more likely to generate three or more goals compared to Tampa Bay.

Under 6 · -115 (Play to -120)

For an elimination game featuring this Lightning squad, a total of 6 at nearly even money seems to be worth a play — even if this Avalanche team is a different animal.

In four elimination games this postseason, the Lightning have played to an average of just 3.75 combined goals per contest, with the under going 3-1.

Those numbers are consistent with what we saw last season.

While I don’t expect Tampa to control the run of play, I do think it will strive to keep the game as battened down as possible. The Lightning will attempt to keep five players below the puck as much as possible and try to let Vasilevskiy steal this contest by making a lot of saves on shots of acceptable quality.

Darcy Kuemper was very steady in Game 4. Should he play reasonably well again tonight, I think that will likely mean a low offensive output for the Bolts considering Colorado’s tremendous defense throughout the playoffs.

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D.C. United vs. Nashville SC Betting Odds, Preview, Picks: Betting Value Sitting on Underdog Coyotes (June 25)

mls-betting-odds-picks-predictions-dc united-nashville sc-saturday-june 25

D.C. United vs. Nashville Odds

D.C. United Odds +125
Nashville Odds +200
Draw +230
Over/Under 2.5 (-110 / -130) 
Day | Time Saturday | 5 p.m. ET
How To Watch ESPN | fuboTV
Odds updated via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

In one of the more interesting Major League Soccer lines of the weekend, a struggling D.C. United team finds itself listed as a rare home favorite ahead of Saturday’s match with a Nashville SC side currently in playoff contention.

D.C. United has been very uninspiring this season, picking up only two wins in its last 12 games to sit in 13th place in the Eastern Conference.

Meanwhile, Nashville continues to be a steady squad since joining the league in 2020, entering the weekend sixth in the Western Conference standings.

The North American League is typically dominated by the home teams, but I’ll be rolling with the visitors in this fixture to avoid the defeat.

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D.C. United

If there’s one reason to be positive ahead of this fixture, D.C. United has been much more competitive at Audi Field this campaign.

Of the 14 points secured, 10 of them have come at home in victories against Charlotte FC, New England and Houston, to go with a draw against Toronto FC.

D.C. United also has a strong front three in Ola Kamara, Taxiarchis Fountas and Michael Estrada, who have combined for 15 goals in MLS play.


By The Numbers

  • 88% — The trio of Kamara, Fountas and Estrada have combined to score this extremely high percentage of D.C. United’s goals.
  • -2.1 — Even with the solid home form, D.C. United still owns this xGDiff on the campaign at home, according to fbref.com.
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Nashville SC

The big question is which Nashville team is going to show up: the one that beat playoff contenders Real Salt Lake, Montreal and Colorado or the side that lost to Houston and Sporting Kansas City?

This run of playing down to its opponents can’t continue for Nashville as more bottom feeders are coming up on the schedule. This contest is followed by a home match against the Portland Timbers.

There will be some serious questions to be asked if Nashville doesn’t pick up the needed results in this upcoming three-game window.


By The Numbers

  • 8 — While the finishing touches were being made to the new GEODIS Park, Nashville has played this many gamesaway from home on the season.
  • 1.08 — Nashville ranks top five in all of MLS in this many xG allowed per 90 minutes so far.
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Betting Analysis & Pick

While I do think you could take a shot at the juicy moneyline price, I’m taking a safer route by playing Nashville on the Draw No Bet market at +126 odds via FanDuel as my top selection.

This is the same Nashville team that has proven itself on the road, beating Colorado and Seattle away from home. Meanwhile, D.C. United has claimed most of its points against lower competition in Toronto FC, Inter Miami, Houston and FC Cincinnati.

I don’t think D.C. United should be favored over just about any MLS team, so I’ll take my chances with a playoff contender avoiding a defeat.

The Pick: Nashville — Draw No Bet (+126)

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Cubs vs. Cardinals MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: St. Louis Offense Should Get to Kyle Hendricks (Friday, June 24)

cubs vs cardinals odds-picks-predictions-mlb-june 24

Cubs vs. Cardinals Odds

Cubs Odds +140
Cardinals Odds -160
Over/Under 9 (-105/-115)
Time 8:15 p.m. ET
TV Apple TV+
Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Cardinals dropped Thursday’s game to the Brewers, bringing them to a tie with dueling 40-32 records sitting atop the National League Central division.

The Cubs aren’t enjoying the same kind of success this season as their 26-44 record has them 13 games out of the lead in the division. Chicago has a -79 run differential this year compared to the Cardinals’ +62 run differential, which is the best in the division.

Despite the Cubs’ down season, this is still an exciting matchup because of the history of their rivalry with the Cardinals. Who will get the job done tonight on national television?

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Can Cubs Hit Pallante?

The Cubs will face Andre Pallante, who is making the fourth start of his major league career. He’s been pretty impressive in his last two starts as he was able to complete five innings, allow no more than two earned runs, and strikeout at least four batters in both outings.

Pallante has good velocity as he averages over 95 mph on his fastball. He has faced the Cubs already this season, but that was the first start of his major league career. Pallante was OK in that game, but walked four batters and failed to complete five innings.

That start was at Wrigley Field, though, and  he’ll get the home field advantage on the Cubs this time around.

Chicago’s lineup has some power in it as Christopher Morel and Patrick Wisdom each have ISOs above .200 against right-handed pitching this season, but Pallante doesn’t give up much power to right-handed batters as he’s allowed a .094 ISO to them this season.

Pallante has a 16% K-rate this season and five hitters in the Cubs’ projected lineup have a K-rates of at least 21% against right-handed pitching this season.

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Cardinals’ Offense Getting Hot

The Cardinals’ lineup has been heating up lately as Paul Goldschmidt continues his potential MVP campaign and Nolan Arenado and Nolan Gorman continue to hit for power themselves.

Cubs starter Kyle Hendricks was absolutely blasted in his last start. Hendricks allowed six earned runs against the Braves without completing five innings. On the season, he has a 5.18 xFIP, 16% K%, 6% BB%, and 37% ground ball percentage.

St. Louis’ lineup has a lot of power in it as Goldschmidt, Arenado, Gorman and Juan Yepez all have ISOs above .200 against right-handed pitching this season.

Gorman especially could be in for a big game as Hendricks has allowed a .308 ISO to left-handed batters this season compared to just a .145 ISO to right-handed batters this season.

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Cubs-Cardinals Pick

I’m rocking with the Cardinals here. The Cubs aren’t contenders and Hendricks certainly isn’t anything special this year with an xFIP over 5.00.

St. Louis’ offense has been cooking and I expect the Cardinals to score early and often at home against Hendricks.

Pallante could struggle early in the game if his control issues return, but taking the full game moneyline makes this less of an issue.

Pick: Cardinals ML -155

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Stanley Cup Final Game 5 Odds, Preview, Prediction: How to Bet Lightning vs. Avalanche (June 24)

nhl-stanley cup finals-game 5-odds-picks-predictions-preview-betting-avalanche vs. lightning-june 24

Lightning vs. Avalanche Odds

Lightning Odds +146
Avalanche Odds -176
Over/Under 6 (-106 / -114)
Time 8 p.m. ET
TV ABC/ESPN+
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

Nazem Kadri’s beautiful overtime winner in Game 4 has his Avalanche on the cusp of finally hoisting the Stanley Cup, and Colorado will enter as heavy favorites Friday to cap off its magical run on home ice.

After Game 4 closed as a pick’em, does it seem fair for Colorado to be priced as a massive favorite at -185?

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Lightning Running Out of Gas?

What the two-time defending champion Lightning have done over the last two seasons has been nothing short of spectacular — and the resilience shown from this group to even get into this position has been nothing short of spectacular.

In each of the last two cup runs, Brayden Point was among the very best Lightning skaters, and getting through two very tough opponents without him is wildly impressive. I feel this potential series loss is far from the Lightning finally getting a tough team in the Cup final.

Tampa Bay has fought through a plethora of injuries this postseason. Now, it seems like Jon Cooper’s group is finally running out of gas as it meets an extremely talented and well-rested Avalanche squad.

Erik Cernak has quietly proven to be one of the toughest players in hockey over the last few seasons, but the quietly stellar defender was clearly dinged up badly before leaving Game 4.

It’s quite likely we’ll see him and maybe even Point skate in this contest. However, it’s hard to imagine either will be able to play anywhere near top form.

Tampa Bay got dominated in the opening two games of the series in Colorado, managing an expected goals rate of 33.85%. Even if some of the Lightning’s dinged-up players manage surprisingly strong performances tonight, it will likely take an all-world performance from Andrei Vasilevskiy to force a Game 6.

This’s very possible, as Vasilevskiy has been tremendous again this postseason, playing to a +13.7 goals saved above expected rating with a .920 save %.

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Colorado Benefiting From Postseason Dominance

Colorado enters this contest with a record of 15-3 this postseason. A victory tonight to cap off the run would have the Avalanche hoisting the Cup having suffered the fewest losses in the salary cap era.

While the Avalanche already possess the best roster in hockey, that advantage is compounded due to the fact that Colorado has not had to grind through nearly as many playoff outings.

Tampa Bay’s Cooper said earlier this postseason that he thought the fact his group had played fewer contests than the Rangers made a difference entering the back half of that series. Now, it seems that narrative is working against his group in this final.

Kadri served as the Avalanche’s most notable absence earlier in the series, and it was hard to say what kind of a difference he would make as he returned to the lineup in Game 4.

Yet, Kadri built upon what has been an amazing postseason with his seventh game-winning goal of the run. Colorado is clearly holding a far greater edge with him back in the lineup.

Darcy Kuemper has likely been asked to do less than any goaltender in recent history en route to this cup, as evidenced by his .898 save %. That mark could be the worst from a Cup winner in over 25 seasons.

Kuemper has now played to a -3.9 GSAx this postseason but was very solid in Game 4. If he can just stop the shots he’s supposed to, he could be hoisting the Cup Friday night.

Lightning vs. Avalanche Pick

As tough as closing out the back-to-back champions will surely be, I think Colorado’s going to come out and control the run of play in this contest.

Colorado’s dominance throughout this postseason seems to be paying off in this series, as I feel the Avalanche are far less withered than the Lightning. On top of that, Tampa has played to significant home and road splits this postseason, and the Avs thoroughly dominated the Lightning in Denver in Games 1 and 2.

It’s much easier to find arguments as to why the Avalanche will come out and dominate tonight than why a heavily beat-up Lightning team can post a win in Colorado after getting crushed there in the first two games of the series.

I feel we have some strong value for the Avalanche to win in regulation at -105 and would play that down to -115.

Pick: Avalanche Win in Regulation (-105)

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Friday MLB Props Odds, Picks: 2 Bets for Taijuan Walker and German Marquez (June 24)

friday-mlb-props-odds-picks-2-bets-for-taijuan-walker-german-marquez-june-24

I’m targeting two pitchers in the player prop market for today’s loaded Friday slate with all 30 teams in action.

Our Action Labs Props Tool grades each prop on a scale from 1-10, and I’ll be sure to include the grade for each of my betting recommendations in my discussions below.

Taijuan Walker Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-115)

Mets vs. Marlins Marlins -135
First Pitch 6:40 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

Taijuan Walker has had a fine season as he’s kept his ERA under 3.00 while winning games for the Mets (5-2 personal record).

But there are some concerning underlying statistics. His xERA and xFIP are approaching 4.00, his .278 BABIP is a little low, and his Strikeout Rate is way down.

After three straight seasons of posting a K/9 between 8.00 and 9.00, that number is down to 6.67 through 11 starts this season. He failed to cash this number in eight of his first nine starts, and his CSW% ranks in just the 25th percentile of qualified pitchers (25.8%).

However, I don’t expect this to be the case forever. Projections still have him finishing the season with close to 8.00 K/9, with the low end of that spectrum being around 7.55. His strikeout numbers should go up.

For example, Walker has struck out 19 batters over his last two starts. He posted 97 pitches in each start with a CSW rate of over 32%.

That second start was against the Miami Marlins, his opponent today.

Walker’s main strikeout pitch is the splitter, something he’s throwing more than ever before because of its high Whiff Rate (31.9%) and its -8 Run Value.

The Marlins are 24th this season in Weighted Splitter Runs Created (-3.0), and current Miami batters have struck out 21 times in 72 ABs against Walker lifetime (26.9%).

This is a very good matchup for Walker.

Our Action Labs Player Props tool projects Walker for 5.2 strikeouts today, while FanGraphs SaberSim projections have him closer to 4.8.

But either way, I think he strikes out plenty of Marlins today.

Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (-115)

Action Labs Grade: 7/10

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German Marquez Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-165)

Rockies vs. Twins Twins -165
First Pitch 8:10 p.m. ET
Best Line BetRivers

The juice is high on this line, but there’s too much to like about German Marquez’s chances today to pass on it.

Marquez has crushed this number in 10 of his 13 starts this season, and he’s recorded at least six strikeouts in six of his last eight starts. Since the beginning of 2021, Marquez has cashed over 4.5 Ks in 33 of 45 starts, a 73% hit rate that implies -275 odds to the over.

It’s not that Marquez has elite strikeout numbers, but he eats up innings for a Rockies squad that needs it. Despite his 6.19 ERA, Marquez has tossed at least six innings in six of his last seven starts. He’ll get plenty of strikeout opportunities, and his 8.14 K/9 implies he should get to this number by the sixth.

Meanwhile, the Twins have posted a top-10 Strikeout Rate against RHPs on the season (23.2%), and those numbers have only increased in the last month (23.8%).

FanGraphs SaberSim projections mark Marquez for 4.9 strikeouts today, while our Action Labs Player Props tool projects him for a whopping 5.7. That gives us enough value to back Marquez at this low number.

Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (-165)

Action Labs Grade: 7/10

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Tigers vs. Diamondbacks MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Merrill Kelly Gives Arizona an Early Edge Over Detroit (Friday, June 24)

tigers-vs-diamondbacks-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-friday-june-24-2022

Tigers vs. Diamondbacks Odds

Tigers Odds +140
Diamondbacks Odds -165
Over/Under 8 (-120/+100)
Time 9:40 p.m. ET
TV Apple TV+
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Diamondbacks will host the Tigers Friday night for some interleague play with each team looking to snap a three-game losing streak.

Arizona will send Merrill Kelly to the mound, who has been steady throughout the season over 78 innings pitched with an ERA of 3.46.

He will duel with Rony Garcia, who has been anything but steady while accumulating an ERA of 4.97 over 38 innings this season.

Will Arizona find some success against Garcia, or is he due for regression?

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Garcia and the Tigers Looking for Momentum

Garcia’s notably high ERA of 4.97 actually comes with what appears to be a fair bit of luck, and it actually seems clear the 24 year-old righty could fare much worse moving forward.

Garcia holds an xERA of 7.67, with a shocking Barrel Rate of 20% and an xSLG of .684.

Garcia’s holds one of the league’s lowest QOPA of 3.76, which suggests it’s far from surprising to see how much hard contact opponents are finding off him this season.

Garcia has allowed an Average Exit Velocity of 93 MPH, which is the highest among starters in the big leagues who have pitched at least 32 innings.

Detroit will field what is likely the league’s worst offense Friday, and even if top prospect Riley Greene continues making a difference, this unit is simply terrible.

The Tigers have hit to a wRC+ of just 68 this season, with a wOBA of .261 versus right-handed pitching.

In June the Tigers have not fared much better offensively and have batted to a wRC+ of 72 with a .268 wOBA.

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Kelly Gives the Diamondbacks an Advantage

The Diamondbacks have not fared much better offensively of late than the Tigers, with lowly 78 wRC+ and 278 wOBA marks in June.

However, on top of what still appears to be a slight edge offensively,  Merrill Kelly is offering the Diamondbacks a massive edge in starting pitching for this contest.

Kelly has pitched to a very respectable 3.60 xERA this season, which has come with a very strong QOPA of 4.60.

Kelly has also pitched to a home ERA of 3.15, including a stellar performance in his last start against a powerful Twins lineup in which he allowed just one earned run over seven innings of five-hit ball.

_PromoID=[16478, 16449]

Tigers-Diamondbacks Pick

Detroit’s anemic offense will start this contest at a massive disadvantage, as Arizona is fielding a considerably more effective starter with Kelly.

Even if Garcia manages to hang in better than expected, we may not see Detroit manage much of an output early from Kelly. At -130 for the D-Backs to cover -0.5 in the first five innings, I certainly feel there is some value looking for Arizona to extend Garcia’s struggles.

Pick: Diamondbacks -0.5 First 5 Innings -130 (Play to -140)

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Seattle Sounders vs. Sporting Kansas City Betting Odds, Preview, Picks: Can Hosts Down Midwest Foes in MLS Clash? (June 25)

mls-betting-odds-picks-predictions-seattle sounders-sporting kansas city-saturday-june 25

Seattle vs. Sporting KC Odds

Seattle Odds -140
Sporting KC Odds +340
Draw +275
Over/Under 2.5 (-135 / -110) 
Day | Time Saturday | 3 p.m. ET
How To Watch ABC | fuboTV
Odds updated via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

Kicking off Saturday’s Major League Soccer action, Sporting Kansas City travels West to take on the Seattle Sounders in ESPN’s national broadcast featured game.

The hosts have been climbing up the league table after the slow start, picking up four wins and only one loss in the last six outings in league play.

Meanwhile, this has been a rough season for Sporting KC, which is currently 12th in the Western Conference. However, the visitors are fresh off an impressive road victory against Nashville last weekend.

This is a matchup of teams headed in opposite directions, so I’m expecting the Seattle to continue its fine form at Lumen Field.

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Seattle Sounders

Following the long cup run that resulted in winning the CONCACAF Champions League, we are now starting to see Seattle churn out similar performances in MLS action.

This stretch of stellar play has included impressive home displays, including victories against Minnesota United, Charlotte FC and Vancouver before a solid draw against Los Angeles FC last time out.

However, the Sounders will likely be without star striker Raúl Ruidíaz, who leads the team with five goals in six MLS starts.


By The Numbers

  • 1.857 — Seattle’s average goals per game when playing at home this season, according to fbref.com, which is almost double its 1.0 goals per 90 minutes mark on the road.
  • +3.4 — In the last four home matches since the CCL run, Seattle has owned a this xGDiff in those contests.
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Sporting Kansas City

This has been a very disappointing season for a club that has reached the playoffs in 10 of its last 11 campaigns.

If there is any hope of extending this great postseason record, Sporting KC needs to improve in all areas of the field and start securing some road points.

Sporting KC only has one victory to go along with nine road losses this season, which also includes a -13 goal difference away from Kansas City.


By The Numbers

  • 21 — The number of goals allowed in away games this season by Sporting KC are the most in MLS this season.
  • -7.1 — To add to the misery on the road, the visitors have posted this xGDiff in away matches and haven’t won the xG battle in any of those fixtures.
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Betting Analysis & Pick

I’m electing to keep this play pretty simple and backing a much better Seattle side with a moneyline wager at the -140 odds via BetMGM as my top pick.

Even without Ruidíaz, the Sounders should have plenty of attacking prowess with United States internationals Jordan Morris and Cristian Roldan, as well as Colombian striker Fredy Montero as the front three.

You can look at playing Seattle on a spread of -1 at a better price if this moneyline drifts beyond what you want to pay, but I feel this number is still too good to pass up in this spot.

The Pick: Seattle ML (-140)

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MLB NRFI Odds, Pick & Preview: Value on Taijuan Walker & Sandy Alcantara in the First Inning (Friday, June 24)

mlb-odds-picks-predictions-nrfi-betting-sandy alcantara-taijuan walker-marlins vs. mets-june 24

Shayne Trail breaks down his favorite NRFI/YRFI bet of the day below, but you can follow all of his bets in the Action Network app.


Mets vs. Marlins — No Runs First Inning (-128)

Matchup Mets (Walker) vs. Marlins (Alcantara)
First Pitch 6:40 p.m. ET
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On Friday, we head to loanDepot Park to take an NRFI between two National League East rivals.

Sandy Alcantara has officially entered the Cy Young Award conversation, and his 11-3 NRFI record is among the best in the league. He’s now 37-10 in terms of not allowing first-inning runs since 2021.

When facing batters the first time through the order, he’s holding teams to a .189 average. When Alcantara has been the favorite since 2020, he’s gone 19-4 to the NRFI.

It’s safe to say Alcantara has had the edge in the matchups thus far:

  • Brandon Nimmo: 2-for-20
  • Starling Marte: 1-for-7
  • Pete Alonso: 4-for-21
  • Eduardo Escobar: 1-for-12

In the first inning in the month of June, the Mets have performed poorly in terms of soft and hard contact rates ranking 27th in soft contact at 22.2% and 27th in hard contact at 24.1%. This is a telling split, showing the Mets’ first-inning contact is not significant.

On the other side, we have Taijuan Walker and his respectable 8-3 NRFI record in 2022. This is an interesting spot here for Walker. He faced the Marlins just a few days ago, holding them to two hits with nine strikeouts in 6.2 innings pitched.

This is also the first time this season he has had back-to-back quality starts, as he pitched six innings, gave up one earned run and racked up 10 strikeouts against the Angels the game before.

With 19 strikeouts in 12 innings pitched in his last two starts, it’s safe to say Walker is having an excellent June.

Here’s how the Mets hurler has done in the past against some of the Marlins’ key hitters:

  • Jesus Aguilar: 2-for-8
  • Jazz Chisholm: 2-for-7
  • Garrett Cooper: 0-for-3
  • Avisail Garcia: 2-for-12

In the first inning this month, the Marlins rank 28th in first inning K% at 31.5%. It should also be noted that the Marlins’ home NRFI percentage is sitting at 82%, which is amongst the best in the league.

Look for Alcantara to continue his Cy Young campaign and pick up NRFI win No. 12, along with Walker to keep his June dominance going. Take the NRFI between the Mets and the Marlins.

For all of Shayne Trail’s favorite NRFI/YRFI bets, follow him in the Action Network app.

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Premier Lacrosse League Betting Odds, Predictions: Best Bets for Redwoods vs. Whipsnakes

premier-lacrosse-league-betting-odds-picks-pll-bets-for-redwoods-vs-whipsnakes

The Premier Lacrosse League heads to Baltimore for week four and kicks off on Friday night with a matchup between rivals — the Redwoods and Whipsnakes. The Whipsnakes boast a 5-2 record against the Redwoods, including three straight playoff wins. The undefeated Whipsnakes enter as 1.5-point favorites against a Redwoods team that has greatly underwhelmed through three games. Additionally, the total is the lowest of the week at 22.5.

Let’s take a look at each matchup and see which team has the betting edge.

If you’re an avid bettor who’s new to lacrosse or a lacrosse fan who’s new to betting, check out my guide on how to bet on lacrosse for some tips to use when placing a lacrosse bet.

Whipsnakes (-1.5) vs Redwoods

Whipsnakes Odds -185
Redwoods Odds +150
Total 22.5
Time Friday, 6:30 p.m. ET
TV ESPN2

Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

Whipsnakes Lacrosse Club

The Whipsnakes enter Friday night’s game following their most impressive win of the season — a 12-9 victory over the high-powered Atlas. The Whipsnakes starting goalie, Kyle Bernlohr, deserves a large amount of credit for the team’s 3-0 start. Through three games, Bernlohr has stopped a league-high 62% of shots and has averaged 13 saves per game. Last week, he held an Atlas team that had averaged 16.5 goals and a 38.5% shooting percentage through two games to just nine goals and a 16% shooting percentage. 

Through three games, the Whipsnakes defense boasts a 21.8% defensive efficiency, which is the best in the league. In addition to Bernlohr’s exceptional play in net, Matt Dunn has thrived as the team’s top cover guy and has been aided by the stellar off-ball defense of Tim Muller and Bryce Young.

The Whipsnakes’ main weaknesses have been on the offensive end as they are averaging just 10 goals per game, despite shooting a league-high 130 times through three games. Their shooting percentage ranks second-to-last at 23.1%, sitting barely ahead of the Redwoods at 22.3%. 

With that said, the Whipsnakes offense should get a major boost in the form of 2020 PLL MVP Zed Williams. When Williams and Matt Rambo are on the field together, this offense thrives. In the Whipsnakes’ past two meetings with the Redwoods, Williams and Rambo have combined for an average of 11 points per game and shot 53% and 37.5%, respectively. They’ll also face a defense that is tied for last in defensive efficiency during settled opportunities.

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Redwoods Lacrosse Club

The Redwoods offense ranks last in shooting percentage and second-to-last in offensive efficiency — a stark contrast from a 2021 Redwoods team that had the most efficient settled offense in the league. The Redwoods offense has also generated the fewest possessions and second-fewest shots through three games. Simply put, the Redwoods offense has struggled tremendously and it will have the misfortune of facing the league’s most efficient defense this week.

Additionally, the Redwoods’ greatest asset last season was TD Ierlan’s presence at the faceoff stripe as he won 65% of his faceoffs in 2021. However, through three games, he’s averaging 48% at the stripe and is winning the clamp at a measly 26.8% rate. This is especially problematic as he faces Whipsnakes faceoff athlete Joe Nardella, who is winning the clamp at a 56.9% rate and winning 93.9% of faceoffs following clamp wins this season. While Ierlan could look more like himself on Friday, it is unlikely he’ll have an overwhelming advantage against Nardella at the stripe.

Ultimately, the Redwoods offense hasn’t done enough through three weeks to instill enough confidence that they’ll be able to put up a healthy amount of points against this Whipsnakes defense. Likewise, Zed Williams’ reinsertion into the lineup should give this Whipsnakes offensive unit the spark it needs to defeat their rivals and cover the 1.5-point spread. While it’s already heavily juiced at -135, I like betting the Whips at -1.5 and would do so up to -145.

Pick: Whipsnakes -1.5

PropBetGuy’s MLB Player Prop Play for Friday: How to Fade Braves’ Ian Anderson (June 24)

propbetguys-mlb-player-prop-pick-for-friday-how-to-bet-braves-ian-anderson-june-24

PropBetGuy will break down some of his favorite MLB plays of the day, and will track all his bets in The Action Network app.


Ian Anderson Under 16.5 Pitching Outs (-120)

Prop Ian Anderson Under 16.5 Pitching Outs (-120)
Matchup Dodgers vs. Braves
Time 7:20 p.m. ET
Books Available

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We’ve got a fun weekend of baseball ahead of us with several intriguing series matchups – one of which is a rematch of last season’s NLCS between the Dodgers and Braves. Tonight, Ian Anderson toes the slab for Atlanta, and I’m looking to fade him in what should be a tough spot.

Anderson has had an up-and-down third year in the big leagues, pitching to a 4.35 ERA, and a 5.84 ERA at home. He’s struggled mightily the third time through the batting order, allowing a Yordan Alvarez-like OPS of 1.100. The Braves bullpen has been one of baseball’s best (3.09 ERA – fifth-lowest), and consequently, Anderson has seen quick hooks when he gets in trouble deeper into games.

I also like the Dodgers to drive up Anderson’s pitch count. The right-hander throws an average of 3.99 pitches per plate appearance, which is 25th-highest out of 112 qualified starters, and his Strike Percentage is the 10th-lowest (61.4%). As a team, the Dodgers have the lowest Chase Rate in baseball, which has led them to see the second-most pitches per at bat.

This means Anderson will have to throw more strikes to keep his pitch count down. But if he does, he should be hit hard by a Dodgers team that has the highest OPS against righties (.776) and the fourth-highest Hard Hit Rate.

It’s a tough matchup for Anderson tonight – I have him only finishing five full innings.

Pick: Ian Anderson Under 16.5 Pitching Outs (-120) | Play to (-140)


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Dodgers vs. Braves MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Will Atlanta Keep Rolling? (Friday, June 24)

dodgers-vs-braves-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-friday-june-24-2022

Dodgers vs. Braves Odds

Dodgers Odds -130
Braves Odds +110
Over/Under 9 (-120/+100)
Time 7:20 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

We have the first matchup of this three-game series as the NL East‘s Atlanta Braves host the NL West‘s Los Angeles Dodgers. This is the fourth meeting between these two teams this season and the Dodgers have won two of the first three matchups.

Will the Dodgers win once again, or can the Braves even the season series?

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Los Angeles Dodgers: Urias Has Struggled Against Atlanta

The Los Angeles Dodgers enter this contest in good form as they have won three straight games. However, they could be in a good fade spot as left-hander Julio Urias is slated to take the mound for Los Angeles.

While Urias is having yet another fine season for the Dodgers, he has struggled in his past few outings against the Braves. Over four appearances against Atlanta last season, Urias surrendered 10 earned runs on 19 hits over 17 innings.

Atlanta won two of those four outings. This season, the Dodgers have lost in seven of Urias’ 10 starts.

Additionally, the Dodgers may not get much run support in this matchup as they are slated to go against right-hander Ian Anderson. Through 55 career plate appearances against Anderson, this current Dodgers roster possesses a mere .156 BA, .200 SLG, and .243 wOBA.

Atlanta Braves: Matchups Look Good For Atlanta

Like the Dodgers, the Atlanta Braves enter this series in good form as they have won 18 of their past 21 games (86%). As I mentioned above, right-hander Ian Anderson is slated to take the mound for Atlanta.

Through 13 starts this year, Anderson is 6-3 with a 4.35 ERA and a 1.39 WHIP. While those numbers are not great by any means, his metrics suggest positive regression is looming.

Anderson boasts a .320 xwOBA, .249 xBA and a .388 xSLG. In those 13 starts, the Braves have won nine times.

Following Anderson is one of the league’s best bullpens. Since May 1st, the Braves’ relief pitching ranks third in the league in ERA, 10th in BA, fifth in SLG and fifth in wOBA.

This pitching staff should get plenty of run support as the Braves are slated to go against left-hander Julio Urias. Since the beginning of May, the Braves rank eighth in the league in BA, first in SLG, first in OPS and second in wOBA when facing left-handed pitchers.

Dodgers-Braves Pick

If Urias has yet another poor outing against the Braves, that should be enough to get the job done for us. Both bullpens are spectacular so we will probably need a lead entering the later innings, which is more than doable considering how well the Braves have been hitting left-handed pitchers recently.

This lineup should give Anderson a good amount of confidence to attack Los Angeles hitters, which is a good thing considering his track record against this lineup. Mixing Anderson’s success this season with how great the Braves have been recently — especially when facing left-handers — pushes me to take Atlanta as a short home underdog, despite facing a great Dodgers team.

Pick: Atlanta Braves ML (+110) | Play up to (-110)
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Astros vs. Yankees MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Will Justin Verlander & Luis Severino Stifle Hitters? (Friday, June 24)

astros vs yankees odds-picks-predictions-mlb-june 24

Astros vs. Yankees Odds

Astros Odds +110
Yankees Odds -130
Over/Under 7.5
Time 7:05 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

If game one of this series was any indication of how close these two clubs are to one another, then tonight’s matchup will be even better.

Thursday night, we saw the Yankees battle back from three-run deficits on two separate occasions. The second one was part of a four-run bottom of the ninth that would ultimately end in an Aaron Judge walk-off double.

Tonight, we have a marquee matchup on the mound as the ageless Justin Verlander will face off against Luis Severino. Verlander is coming off his shortest outing of the season as he allowed seven runs (four earned) and nine hits in three-plus innings against the White Sox.

Severino is also entering this start off a bit of a clunker. He gave up five runs on three hits and walked a season-high four batters in five innings against the Blue Jays. However, he did strike out nine guys, so his stuff was still great, but his command was not.

Will both of these elite starters right the ship and give us the pitching duel we all expect? Let’s dive in to find out.

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Navigating Astros Lefties is Key for Severino

What Yordan Alvarez has been doing this season has been incredible, and if not for Aaron Judge, Alvarez would be getting much more MVP hype. He comes into this game with 22 homers and 54 RBI while hitting .317.

He’s also been scorching hot in his last seven games as he’s bashed five homers and driven in 12 runs while batting .333. All Alvarez does is hit the ball hard, as he’s tied for the hardest average exit velocity in the majors with Giancarlo Stanton.

Alvarez is not alone. Kyle Tucker and Michael Brantley have also made a great deal of hard contact this season. Not letting these three do damage will be the key for Severino in this outing.

It is not like Severino will be overmatched by them at all. Severino enters ranking in the top 13 percent of all qualified pitchers in every expected statistic and strikeout rate. Also, Brantley is the only one with any history against Severino. He’s hit .313 with two extra-base hits in 18 plate appearances. Alvarez is 0-for-2 with a walk, and Tucker has never faced him.

The lack of history will play to Severino’s advantage as his stuff is tremendous and could give them fits the first two times through at minimum.

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Verlander to Continue Historical Domination of Yankees

Verlander returned from Tommy John surgery at the ripe age of 39 and looks to have not missed a beat. He enters this start with an 8-3 record and 2.30 ERA. His stuff is identical to the last time we saw him fully healthy in 2020, and the results are as well.

Verlander’s command is still top-notch, making his arsenal so difficult to deal with. We’ll see him utilize three pitches in any count, and each can be thrown for strikes. None of his pitches have a BAA higher than .219

So now that we’ve established that Verlander is similar to the pitcher he was in years past, then his great history against the Yankees will carry over into this start. Verlander has totaled 184 at-bats against the current Yankees lineup and only allowed them to hit .174.

Some notable averages in there: Gallo .097, Judge .167, Stanton .097, Torres .167. The only man in the New York lineup with good career numbers against Verlander is DJ LeMahieu.

Also, in those career numbers, Verlander has a 31.5 percent strikeout rate and a 33.7 percent whiff rate. The three most prominent contributors to those numbers are Gallo, Judge and Stanton.

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Astros-Yankees Pick

After Thursday night’s game which was highlighted by multiple three-run homers, tonight’s game will have a very different look to it. Severino’s stuff has been top-tier this season, and he has more than enough to navigate the Astros’ dangerous lefties.

Verlander is a veteran who knows how to deal with this potent Yankees lineup. I expect him to turn in a strong performance after his most recent outing and help keep this game well under the total.

Pick: Under 8 (Play to 7.5)

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Mets vs. Marlins MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Can Alcántara Bolster His Cy Young Candidacy? (Friday, June 24)

mets-vs-marlins-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-friday-june-24-2022

Mets vs. Marlins Odds

Mets Odds +100
Marlins Odds -120
Over/Under 7.5 (-115/-105)
Time 6:40 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Sandy Alcántara is one of the Cy Young leaders in the National League for a reason. He ranks among the top of MLB in most predictive metrics and owns a 1.72 ERA. He does have a 2.59 xERA, but this still ranks in the top 8% of the league. Taijuan Walker has been solid for the New York Mets and will face off with Alcántara and the Miami Marlins on Friday evening. Walker has a 3.83 xERA, so there is a notable difference between the two. In addition, Walker ranks in the bottom 25% of the league in Average Exit Velocity and Hard Hit Percentage.

Miami owns a 114 wRC+ off of right-handers this month, compared to a 101 wRC+ for New York. With the better starter and some decent relief pitching, the Marlins should come out victorious.

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New York Mets: Is Luck Running Out For Walker?

Walker is a decent back-of-the-rotation starter. He just does not compare to Alcántara, especially with how lucky he has been permitting hard contact and actually getting away with it. Of course, Alcántara has a higher ERA than xERA, but it is tough to go lower than 1.72. Walker’s xERA is over a point higher than his ERA. This displays luckiness.

The Marlins have six batters with a xwOBA over .340 off of righties this month. Nick Fortes, Jazz Chisholm, Jr. and Jorge Soler are all averaging at least 90 mph off the bat, as well. This should come into play considering Walker’s Average Exit Velocity is 89.9 MPH. In addition, Walker is only striking out opponents at a 18.3% clip. This is down 4% from last season. If more Marlins are making contact, that means more balls are getting hit hard off of Walker. Expect Miami to jump on him early.

In fact, the Marlins have the rest of the lineup floating above .300 xwOBA, so they are not necessarily automatic outs at the bottom of the order.

The Mets also have a great back end of the bullpen in Edwin Díaz, but they have a similar situation in middle relief to the Marlins. It may be slightly better, but Walker will not go deep into this game. If anything, this provides the edge to the Marlins in relief usage.

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Miami Marlins: Can Alcántara Continue His Dominance?

Building off of that, the Mets only have two hitters (Pete Alonso and Mark Canha) with a xwOBA over .340 off of righties in June. This is concerning coming into a game against a Cy Young contender. Even with an average fastball of 98 mph, Alcántara ranks in the 88th percentile in Average Exit Velocity. This context matters because Alonso crushes the ball. Alcántara should be able to hold Alonso in check and negate his massive power.

Now, Miami has a worse bullpen than New York (4.25 xFIP vs. 3.85 xFIP), but it is not a distinguishable difference. Even though the Marlins needed to use six relievers to finish Wednesday’s game, they still have enough artillery to throw at the Mets. Alcántara has gone at least seven innings in all four starts in June, so they should be fine.
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Mets-Marlins Pick

Alcántara is the better of these two starting pitchers and New York hits righties around a league-average level right now. This does not bode well for the Mets. On the contrary, expect negative regression for Walker. The Marlins have feasted on righties lately and have power throughout the order to give him and the Mets’ bullpen issues throughout this game. Take the Marlins from -120 and play them to -150.

Pick: Miami Marlins -120 | play to -150

How to Watch All of the 2022 Wimbledon Women’s and Men’s Matches

how-to-watch-2022-wimbledon-matches

The Wimbledon Championships fall in a period of the sports calendar where there isn’t much going on, so perhaps it’s no surprise that the coverage for the event has so much depth.

In the United States, ESPN will be airing each and every one of the main draw men’s and women’s singles matches for the Championships on ESPN, ESPN+ or ABC.

Because Wimbledon removed the “middle Sunday” break that typically divided the Championships into two portions of play, there will be 14 consecutive days of singles play.

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There are a number of interesting storylines to monitor as the play gets underway.

Serena Williams will return to the singles court for the first time since last year’s Championships. She had to retire from her first round match in 2021 due to injury, and she hasn’t played on Tour since.

Williams competed in the Eastbourne doubles event this past week, winning two matches with Ons Jabeur before her partner withdrew due to a knee injury.

Rafael Nadal will look to win his third consecutive Grand Slam title, matching the feat that Novak Djokovic accomplished last year. Nadal would give himself a chance at a calendar Grand Slam in New York if he can win in London.

Novak Djokovic enters the tournament having won the three prior iterations of Wimbledon.

The full singles schedule can be found below.

Day Round
Monday, June 27 Men’s/Women’s Round 1
Tuesday, June 28 Men’s/Women’s Round 1
Wednesday, June 29 Men’s/Women’s Round 2
Thursday, June 30 Men’s/Women’s Round 2
Friday, July 1 Men’s/Women’s Round 3
Saturday, July 2 Men’s/Women’s Round 3
Sunday, July 3 Men’s/Women’s Round 4
Monday, July 4 Men’s/Women’s Round 4
Tuesday, July 5 Men’s/Women’s Quarterfinals
Wednesday, July 6 Men’s/Women’s Quarterfinals
Thursday, July 7 Women’s Semifinals
Friday, July 8 Men’s Semifinals
Saturday, July 9 Women’s Final
Sunday, July 10 Men’s Final
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Arman Tsarukyan vs. Mateusz Gamrot UFC Odds, Pick & Prediction: 2 Bets for Saturday’s Main Event (June 25)

Arman Tsarukyan vs. Mateusz Gamrot-ufc-odds-betting-picks-predictions-main event-fight night-june 25

Arman Tsarukyan vs. Mateusz Gamrot Odds

Tsarukyan Odds
-300
Gamrot Odds
+250
Over/Under
4.5 (-120 / -105)
Venue
UFC APEX
Time
Approx. 12:30 a.m. ET
Channel
ESPN
Odds as of Friday and via Caesars.

Two of the UFC’s top prospects will square off in Saturday’s main event as No. 11 ranked Lightweight Arman Tsarukyan faces No. 12 ranked Mateusz Gamrot in what could prove a preview of a future Lightweight title bout down the line.

The 25-year-old Tsarukyan enters on a five-fight winning streak after losing a short-notice UFC debut to the next Lightweight title challenger, Islam Makhachev.

The 31-year-old Gamrot is 3-1 in the UFC after losing a split decision in his promotional debut to Guram Kutateladze, the only blemish on his career record.

Below, I’ll provide my analysis and projections for Saturday’s matchup and utilize those factors to bet on the main event.

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Tale of the Tape

Tsarukyan Gamrot
Record 18-2 20-1 (1 NC)
Avg. Fight Time 11:31 7:43
Height 5’7″ 5’10”
Weight (pounds) 155 lbs. 155 lbs.
Reach (inches) 72″ 70″
Stance Orthodox Southpaw
Date of birth 10/11/96 12/11/90
Sig Strikes Per Min 3.75 3.79
SS Accuracy 48% 47%
SS Absorbed Per Min 1.36 2.69
SS Defense 61% 64%
Take Down Avg. 3.47 5.83
TD Acc 37% 40%
TD Def 78% 100%
Submission Avg 0.0 0.5
    Tsarukyan’s favoritism is driven by 1) his close/competitive fight with Makhachev in a short-notice debut and 2) a pair of recent early finishes over Christos Giagos and Joel Alvarez.
    Still, until those recent finishes, Tsarukyan was considered to be more of a decision merchant who used his wrestling to grind on opponents. While Tsarukyan is strong, he’s not a particularly big puncher. He primarily uses his grappling to kill the clock against opponents rather than hunting for submissions.

    Considering the mystery surrounding his five-round cardio, I would have difficulty laying such a hefty price on the Tsarukyan side. This is the first five-round fight of his career, and while it doesn’t appear that Tsarukyan will struggle to fight for a full 25-minutes, it remains an untested area within his game.
    Conversely, Gamrot is both battle-tested and proven in the championship rounds.
    I’d say he’s better in five-round fights than three-round fights. He won the KSW Lightweight and Featherweight straps in Poland, defended the Lightweight belt four times and headlined numerous cards. He’s been to the fourth round or beyond on three occasions.
    Gamrot tends to pace himself for five-round affairs — partially explaining the loss in his UFC debut to Kutateladze — coming off of a five-round title fight and failing to show a ton of urgency early on (lost Round 1 on 2-of-3 scorecards).
    Both men are excellent wrestlers and blend their striking well with their grappling. I expect to see a back-and-forth affair in which all aspects of mixed martial arts are on full display.
    No matter who initiates the takedown or gets put on their back, I expect the opponent to be able to scramble back to their feet or reverse positions.
    And I would be surprised if either man can control their opponent in a particular position for extended stretches of the fight or if there isn’t a grappling sequence in every round.

    Both fighters are complete mixed martial artists, and this should be a close and competitive affair in which individual rounds may be challenging to score.
    To justify the steep price tag, one must assume that Tsarukyan has a cardio advantage, durability advantage or superior finishing upside. I think Gamrot comes closer to checking the boxes by all three of those measurements.
    Gamrot has proven five-round cardio; he’s never been finished (Tsarukyan was knocked out in 2015), and I give both fighters relatively similar finishing upside (50% of Gamrot’s win condition, 45% for Tsarukyan).
    This bout should look highly competitive unless one fighter can hurt their opponent. Skill for skill, I have difficulty separating the two in any particular aspect of MMA.
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Tsarukyan vs. Gamrot Pick

I projected Gamrot as a 32.2% underdog (+210 implied odds) in this fight, and I show value on his moneyline down to about +230 (30.2% implied) at nearly a 2% edge.

Gamrot opened at+188 (34.7% implied) for this fight at FanDuel, and the market has moved against him. Still, I had anticipated a line closer to +150 (40% implied) on the Gamrot side when the fight was announced, rather than the current odds.

Moreover, I projected the fight to go the distance 53% of the time (-115 implied odds) or roughly 5% higher than the Lightweight average (48%), and I would bet that prop up to -105 (51.2% implied) at a similar edge to the moneyline.

As a result, I also show value on Gamrot to win by decision (projected +521, listed +550) depending on the book. However, I’m simply splitting a unit between Gamrot’s moneyline and the distance prop rather than playing any winning method wagers.

If Tsarukyan becomes the first man to finish Gamrot, we’ll lose both bets; otherwise, we’ll break even at a minimum.

However, depending on the odds movement before fight time, I may add slightly more to Gamrot’s moneyline.

The Pick: Mateusz Gamrot (+240, 0.5u) at FanDuel · Fight Goes to Decision (+100, 0.5u) at BetRivers

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Braves vs. Dodgers MLB Props: Odds For Freddie Freeman, Matt Olson, More in Former Atlanta Star’s Homecoming

freddie freeman props-braves vs- dodgers-ronald acuna jr-june 24

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Atlanta Braves Odds

Dodgers Odds -134
Braves Odds +114
Over/Under 9 (o -118 / u -104)
Date Friday, June 24
Time 7:20 p.m. ET
Channel MLB.tv

*Odds via FanDuel as of Friday morning

Freddie Freeman makes his long awaited return to Atlanta just a season removed from winning it all with the Braves.

Freeman was allowed to leave over the offseason in favor of first baseman Matt Olson, who was a cheaper alternative and had a comparable season to Freeman en route to his first All-Star nod in 2021.

The Dodgers first baseman ended up receiving a six-year, $162 contract in free agency.

Then, in April, Ronald Acuna Jr. was asked by a journalist whether he would miss Freeman in the wake of his absence.

Acuna said he would miss “nothing” about the former face of the franchise.

“[We were] close because we shared the same locker room but we had a lot, how do you say … clashes, a lot of clashes,” Acuna said, translated from Spanish.

The disagreements stemmed from incidents in which Freeman is alleged to have forced Acuna, then a rookie, to change the way he dressed.

“When you are coming up, there is always someone who wants to keep you in check,” Acuña Jr. said. “Someone comes up from the minor leagues … they come up with their eyeblack, the black thing you put on your face. Your glasses, your hat … a lot of people see it badly. And one, you don’t see it bad because it’s part of the game, you know? So for me, a lot of the veterans were trying to keep me in check, in 2018 a lot of guys were keeping me in check. They called me into the office … and told me: “No, you can’t use [the eyeblack]’ and they took it off me with a rag.”

Freeman responded to reporters that, “I didn’t view it as any friction or clashes or anything like that. I loved Ronald, I still love Ronald, I’m gonna miss Ronald.”

While there may be some animosity between the former face of the Braves franchise and the current one, there won’t be between the fans and Atlanta’s former chosen son.

Expect a warm reception tonight from Truist Park.

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Odds To Hit A Home Run

Player FanDuel Odds Caesars Odds
Freddie Freeman +385 +470
Matt Olson +370 +340
Ronald Acuna Jr. +310 +310

Acuna Jr. consistently has among the shortest odds in the league to hit a home run despite having just seven on the year. He’s hit a homer in four out of 19 games this month for a 21% clip. His implied odds at +310 give him a roughly 24% chance to hit one tonight.

Matt Olson has hit a homer in three of 21 games this month (14%). His best market price of +370 implies the odds that he’ll hit a homer are 21%.

And Freeman to hit a homer on his return to Atlanta is one of the most popular prop bets at FanDuel. It’s driven that price all the way down to +385.

Freeman has hit a homer in three of his last four games. His odds at Caesars at +470 give him implied odds of 17.5% that he’ll do it in his third straight game.

Odds To Get A Hit

Player FanDuel Odds Caesars Odds
Freddie Freeman -250 (o1.5) +145
Matt Olson -170 -188
Ronald Acuna Jr. -210 -208

Caesars is not providing odds on Freeman to get just one hit — in order to bet that market, you need to bet that he nets at least two hits.

The under on that market is -218 for the five-time All-Star to record one hit or no hits on Friday night. Freeman has nabbed a hit in each of his last seven games, including four of those with two or more.

Olson’s best odds at -170 at FanDuel imply the odds that he’ll get a hit tonight are about 63%. Olson has hit safely in 14 of his last 21 games for a clip of roughly 66.7%.

Acuna has hit safely in 11 of 19 games this month (58%). His best odds at -208 at Caesars imply the probability of him doing so tonight are about 67.5%.

Odds To Record an RBI

Player FanDuel Odds Caesars Odds
Freddie Freeman +135 +127
Matt Olson +145 +139
Ronald Acuna Jr. +150 +162

Generally speaking, RBI markets are fickle and subject to far more variance than other player props. They also have among the worst betting edges across the market.

For instance, Acuna has recorded just five over the last month for a 26% clip, but his odds at +150 imply he has a 40% chance to do so tonight.

And while Freeman has knocked a batter in each of his last four games, his 44% odds to do so tonight (+127) are far worse than his season suggests.

The same trend is true for Olson’s odds at a market-best of +139.

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Freddie Freeman Props: How to Bet Dodgers Slugger in Return to Atlanta vs. Braves

freddie freeman props-dodgers vs braves-june 24

On a long-awaited day for baseball fans across the sports landscape, Atlanta Braves legend Freddie Freeman will make his return to Truist Park tonight in his new uniform with the Los Angeles Dodgers

As such, this game should draw plenty of attention. It’s even been reported we’ll see capacity crowds at the field in Atlanta today. 

What’s more exciting is that both Freeman and the Braves are playing so well right now. The Braves are 18-3 this month after a walk-off win on Thursday, while Freeman is working on a seven-game hit streak. 

Given the excitement surrounding the game, I thought I’d take a deeper dive into Freeman’s matchup against his former team and see if there are any Freeman-related prop plays that may provide value. 

Let’s dig in. 

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Recent Trends and Performance Against Braves

Freeman has been on a tear. I’ve mentioned his seven-game hit streak, but four of those games have been multi-hit. He’s cashed his bases total in five straight games, racking up 24 total bases during the stretch. 

Expand the range a bit, and Freeman is slashing .304/.361/.532 since the start of May. 

Freeman has been a doubles machine this year, already having recorded 23 in 58 games after smacking just 25 all of 2021. But his home runs are way down. He managed to go long just once in the whole month of May. 

As a result, Freeman is on track to post the lowest season-long ISO since 2014 (.191). Although, I probably expect that number to slightly rise as the season progresses. 

Instead, Freeman is just peppering the ballpark. He’s currently hitting the ball the opposite way a whopping 33.3% of the time, which would easily be the highest of his career. 

Baseball Savant

However, the Braves shift against LHHs at the third-lowest rate in MLB, so I’m uncertain how much Freeman’s current opposite-field habits will matter against the Atlanta defense. 

We do have a small sample size to help examine that question, however. In three games and 13 ABs against Atlanta earlier this season in Los Angeles, Freeman went 4-for-11 (.364) with two walks (.462 OBP). It’s not out of control, but two of those hits went yard. 

Freeman’s home-away splits show nothing noteworthy, and we know of his spectacular career at Truist Park, so his past performance against Atlanta may be somewhat predictive of his future in this game. 

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The Matchup Against Ian Anderson

Ian Anderson — today’s starter for the Braves — hasn’t had the best season. Once heralded as the Braves’ most promising young starter, his ERA is up to 4.35 this season while his FIP is sitting at 4.34. 

He is due for some regression, as his xERA is down around 3.75. But his 4.09 BB/9 is concerning, and that’s one of the big reasons his WHIP is up to 1.39 this season. 

But let’s look primarily into his matchup with Freeman. 

In terms of platoon splits, it seems like a wash. 

Freeman’s ISO is slightly lower against the right side, but his xBA per plate appearance is slightly higher. His wRC+ is exactly the same.

Meanwhile, Anderson’s xFIP rises slightly against LHHs, but his xwOBA drops. What is noteworthy is that Anderson has allowed just one home run against 107 lefties faced, but six against 172 righties faced. 

Anderson throws a four-pitch mix, and all four pitches have combined for a -1 Run Value this season. I.e., everything has been completely average. What’s noteworthy is that Anderson’s spin rates are down across the board, especially on his changeup. 

Baseball Savant

If Freeman is going to get to Anderson, it’ll be on the changeup. It’s Anderson’s main secondary pitch, and Freeman has posted a whopping +9 Run Value on the pitch with a ridiculous .607 xSLG. 

Freeman’s xSLG on the pitch is reaching career highs, as well. 

Baseball Savant

It’s really tough to project how he’d perform against the Braves’ bullpen, mostly because I’m not sure who will pitch. But I’d look out for Collin McHugh, given Freeman went 2-for-5 against him in the last series and he hasn’t pitched in three days. 

I would expect Kenley Jansen to enter the game late today, and it’s worth noting that Freeman is 3-for-8 against him with a double. 

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Potential Value Bets

You have to wonder if Freeman will go yard again against his former team. It’s certainly a possibility given he’s done so four times this month. 

However, it’s not really my favorite value bet on the board. Anderson has limited home run opportunities against the left side this season and Freeman just isn’t hitting home runs at the same rate. Plus, the wind is expected to be blowing in toward the first-base line at about 8 mph. I’d need better than +425 to consider that

Our Action PRO projections have Freeman recording just one hit today, and under 1.5 hits on DraftKings is something I’d consider given his 1-for-7 performance in the first two games of the three-game set against Atlanta in April. However, with the line at -215 and with Freeman’s current hitting trends, this is also a pass. 

If you’re looking to target Freeman in his return to Atlanta, I’d look three places (in order of lowest-to-highest value). 

First, over 0.5 RBIs at +130 at DraftKings. Our Action PRO projections have him recording exactly 0.5 RBIs today, while FanGraphs SaberSim projections set it at 0.56. There’s projection value here, and Trea Turner has gotten on base in 18 of 19 games this month. 

Second, his total bases are obviously worth a look. He’s been too hot from a TBs standpoint this season to disregard this bet, and there’s always a chance he has a multi-hit game. But it’s not the best value at -120. 

But third — and my favorite prop for Freeman today — is over 0.5 doubles. As mentioned, Freeman has been a double machine this season, and I think there’s a good chance he barrels up an Anderson changeup that doesn’t quite have the juice to leave the park. And we know he can go both ways with the off-speed pitch. Plus, he’s already proven he can post an extra-base hit on the closer Jansen. 

And we’re getting juicy odds on this prop at +290. 

Leans: Freeman o0.5 RBIs (+130) | Freeman o1.5 TBs (-120)

Best Prop Bet: Freeman o0.5 Doubles (+290)

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UFC Fight Night PrizePicks Player Props: A Parlay for Saturday, Featuring Arman Tsarukyan & Rodolfo Vieira

ufc fight night-prizepicks-parlay-odds-betting-arman tsarukyan-rudolfo vieira-june 25

The UFC returns to Las Vegas for Fight Night, headlined by rising lightweight prospects Arman Tsarukyan and Mateusz Gamrot. If you’d rather bet on their — or any other fighters’ — statistical performances than on who’s going to win, PrizePicks has you covered.

Below, I’ll reveal my favorite PrizePicks parlay of the night, as well as other options to include for longer odds.

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What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in more states (30) than sports betting is! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more plays together.


UFC Fight Night PrizePicks Parlay

Arman Tsarukyan Fight Time — Under 22.5

The main event bout between Tsarukyan and Gamrot has roughly a 55% chance to end inside the distance, making this a reasonable line from PrizePicks. However, I think the odds should be a lot better than that.

Both fighters lost decisions in their UFC debuts before embarking on their current win streaks. Tsarukyan’s stands at five with two finishes, while Gamrot has three, all of which ended early.

Both fighters can end the fight wherever it takes place, with Gamrot probably holding the edge on the ground but Tsarukyan on the feet.

The real selling point is the five-round nature of this bout. Neither fighter has fought 25 minutes in the UFC, though Gamrot has done it a couple of times in regional fights. Regardless, there’s a decent chance that one or both of them gasses out, particularly if it’s a wrestle-heavy affair. These two combine for 6.65 takedown attempts per round in their UFC careers.

There’s a reason high-level wrestling matches are only six total minutes, but championship boxing is up to 36 — wrestling is far more taxing. Somebody should run out of steam before the 22.5 minute mark, leading to a finish for his opponent.

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Rodolfo Vieira Takedowns — Under 1.5

There are multiple factors at play in this line for Vieira.

First, his ability to land takedowns is somewhat questionable here. He’s not a great wrestler, and his opponent, Chris “Action Man” Curtis, has 100% takedown defense (in a very small sample size) in the UFC.

Vieira certainly wants this one to hit the canvas, but I’m not sure it will be so easy. It also wouldn’t shock me to see him pull guard, which barring incompetent official scoring, shouldn’t count as a takedown.

Beyond that, I don’t really see a situation in which Vieira needs more than one takedown here. He’s one of the best submission grapplers in the world and will likely be able to end this one with one trip to the mat.

This one’s a bit scary because sometimes fighters getting back to one foot or somewhat upright against the fence is scored as another takedown when they’re returned to the mat. However, Curtis is a much smaller fighter than Vieira, so his odds of doing that are lessened in this matchup.

I’m expecting a takedown singular from Vieira here, with the fight ending shortly thereafter.

Quick Picks

  • Chris Curtis Under 37.5 Significant Strikes: “Action Man” averages over seven significant strikes landed per minute in his UFC career, but that still might not be enough in this fight. It’s got an over/under of 1.5 rounds, with the under heavily juiced. It’s also likely that his opponent, Vieira, gets him to the ground, where Curtis also won’t be landing many significant strikes. This also correlates nicely with the Vieira takedown line — a quick fight means both unders are likely.
  • Alan Baudot Over 10 Minutes Fight Time: Baudot and his opponent, Josh Parisian, have six UFC fights between them, and neither has recorded a single knockdown. Neither has much submission ability either, with Parisian picking up two tap-outs in his first three pro bouts against low-level competition and none since. It’s hard to see where a finish comes from here.
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Women’s 2022 Wimbledon Odds & Best Outright Bets: Ostapenko’s Skill Set and Draw Presents Value

Wimbledon has arrived and despite no ranking points being at the tournament, the players are still ready to fight for the prestigious title.

While 2021 champion Ashleigh Barty has retired and will not defend her title, world No. 1 Iga Swiatek will be looking to extend her 35-match winning streak at the All England Club.

Read on for outright predictions for the 2022 Wimbledon women’s field.

Note: All odds came from FanDuelRead here for tips on viewing tennis matches. The full women’s draw can be found here.

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Outright Winner

Ons Jabeur (+900)

Yes, Jabeur just pulled out of the Eastbourne doubles semifinals, but I have to imagine that was precautionary as she never visibly got injured in her previous Eastbourne doubles matches.

Jabeur has both a terrific grass-court pedigree and a very manageable draw. The Tunisian made the Wimbledon quarterfinals last season and is an impressive 54-16 on grass in her career.

This season, Jabeur won a WTA title on the grass courts of Berlin, defeating Belinda Bencic in the final. Jabeur also beat other tough opposition in Berlin, including Karolina Muchova and Coco Gauff.

Jabeur was dominant in Berlin, winning 10-of-11 sets she played in the tournament. She won at least 65% of her first-serve points in every match, and over 70% in four of her five matches.

In addition, none of Jabeur’s opponents in Berlin won 70% of their first-serve points nor 45% of their second-serve points.

Jabeur’s game works very well on grass. The Tunisian hits her spots on serve, has a powerful forehand that controls the baseline well and a terrific drop shot that keeps opponents off-balance.

In addition, Jabeur’s backhand slice is key for her grass-court success. The slice is consistently well-placed and skids low, out of opponent’s strike zones.

Jabeur is also in the weaker half of the draw. While she might have to play giant-killer Kaia Kanepi in the third round, Kanepi has not looked great on grass this season, going just 1-2 on grass in 2022. Nonetheless, Kanepi’s big game is a worry.

And while Jabeur might have to face Angelique Kerber in the round of 16, the former Wimbledon champion is not nearly the player that she once was. In the other section of Jabeur’s quarter, the two highest seeds, Danielle Collins and Emma Raducanu, have gone a combined 0-1 this grass-court season.

At +900, this seems like a good price to get behind one of the best grass-court players in the draw.

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Jelena Ostapenko (+2100)

Jelena Ostapenko is looking very dangerous at the moment and she has a draw conducive for a long stay in London.

Ostapenko is currently in the final of Eastbourne, having easily taken out Camila Giorgi in the semifinals, 6-2, 6-2. She has not dropped a set in Eastbourne coming into the final, having won at least 70% of her service points in every match she’s played.

This has helped Ostapenko only get broken four times in her four matches this week.

In addition, none of Ostapenko’s four opponents this week have won 70% of their first-serve points and she’s broken serve a minimum of three times in every match.

Even Ostapenko’s round of 16 loss to Dayana Yastremska in Birmingham is not a bad loss, given the intense firepower that Yastremska possesses.

Ostapenko is 37-17 on grass in her career, with the grass accentuating her already-powerful game. Ostapenko plays a low-margin game, but when she’s in-form, she’s nearly unplayable from the baseline. She has extreme power from both wings and can rip winners from seemingly-neutral positions in points.

The vast majority of the matches that Ostapenko plays are entirely on her racquet. She’s going to either win the match if she’s able to find a rhythm from the baseline, or lose it because of her own unforced errors.

Ostapenko’s draw is very favorable. Her potential seeded third-round opponent is clay-courter Martina Trevisan, who is not a threat on grass. The highest seed in her eighth of the draw is No. 5 seed Maria Sakkari, who is also not at her best on the grass.

The highest seed in Ostapenko’s overall quarter is the out-of-form No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit. Given that Ostapenko is in the weaker half of the draw, it feels as if this is the perfect opportunity for Ostapenko to go on a deep run at Wimbledon.

So, while there’s always a chance Ostapenko throws in a stinker of a match at any point, the value is certainly there for her at +2100 to win the tournament.

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Bianca Andreescu (+3000)

While Bianca Andreescu has a tough draw, she has massive potential on grass and could rip through this field if she finds her stride.

Andreescu is currently into the final of Bad Homburg, as Simona Halep withdrew from their semifinal match, but she’s still had an incredible week of tennis.

She has not lost a set in her three matches this week, winning a combined 66% of her second-serve return points in Bad Homburg.

This has helped the Canadian to break serve a total of 14 times. It’s been a masterclass of returning from Andreescu and the Canadian does a great job of being aggressive and pressuring her opponents from the start of the point.

Even during Andreescu’s previous tournament in Berlin, where she fell to Karolina Pliskova in the round of 16, she looked like a contender on grass.

Andreescu won 62% of her second-serve points and held the big-serving Pliskova to just 43% of her second serves won.

Though Andreescu ultimately fell short in that match, it was a good sign that she was able to play last year’s Wimbledon finalist so well.

Andreescu perfectly places her serve and goes big on her groundstrokes, constantly trying to take the initiative in points and be aggressive. Sometimes, she is a bit too aggressive in her approach, but her mindset on court  is the right one.

She also has the variety that is so important on grass. Her slices knife through the court and she has excellent touch that can make opponents very uncomfortable.

It won’t be an easy draw for Andreescu, with either Shuai Zhang or Elena Rybakina in the second round. In addition, Andreescu is in Iga Swiatek’s quarter of the draw. It’s also true that Andreescu has only played 26 matches on grass as a professional, going 17-9 so far.

However, if Andreescu can continue to strike the ball like she has during the grass-court swing, she is a massive contender for the title at Wimbledon. Given her level of play and potential to put it all together over the next couple of weeks, +3000 is a good price to grab Andreescu at.

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Leave: Iga Swiatek (+155)

Yes, I am aware that Swiatek is on a 35-match winning streak. And I know she has a straightforward start to the tournament at the All England Club.

However, I just don’t trust Swiatek on grass yet, and at +160, with Jabeur next-closest at +750, the Pole feels overvalued.

Swiatek has not played since her Roland Garros title, meaning she has no grass-court preparation coming into Wimbledon. It’s not as if Swiatek has years of grass experience that she can fall back on. In Swiatek’s career, she is just 7-5 on grass, having played six matches on the surface since 2019.

It’s hard to say, given such a small sample size, how Swiatek will do at Wimbledon this year. Yes, she’s red-hot at the moment, but grass-court tennis is a completely different animal compared to hard courts or clay and the skill sets necessary to succeed do not always match up.

Swiatek has a heavy forehand that stays deep in the court and is typically hard for opponents to handle. But with the grass often blunting the effectiveness opponents’ topspin, how much damage Swiatek’s forehand will do at Wimbledon remains to be seen.

Her slice and her net play, while not weaknesses, are also not strengths of her game.

While it’s possible that Swiatek, due to her talent level and ability to play with controlled aggression from both wings, might be able to still fly through this draw, I think that at +155, the value just isn’t there.

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College Football Odds, Picks, Futures: Will Kentucky Hit Its Win Total?

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Another Friday, another future.

While we are still a ways away from the start of the college football season, it’s never too early to add futures to the portfolio as the calendar moves closer to the start of the season with each passing day.

I’ll be releasing a breakdown of my favorite futures every Friday leading up to the season. I will also be tweeting them out as I add them @kmalstrom, as well as putting them in my Action App profile.

So far this season, I’ve highlighted my favorite teams’ season win totals, divisions and conference futures and Heisman pieces.

The last time we saw the Kentucky Wildcats, they were losing to 15-seed St. Peter’s in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. I’m here to instill hope into the Wildcat fanbase as they gear up to prove that last year’s football season was no fluke.

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Kentucky’s Encore

While Kentucky’s second-place finish in the SEC East was one of the bigger surprises of last season, it looks poised to repeat its success with continuity on both sides of the ball.

On the offensive side, Kentucky brings back an Offensive TARP of 71% after finishing last season seventh in Offensive Success Rate, 59th in Finishing Drives, and 40th in Havoc Allowed.
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Will Levis will look to take the next step as one of the SEC’s best quarterbacks. Levis finished last season with 2,826 passing yards, 24 touchdowns and 13 interceptions with a 66% completion percentage while also adding 376 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground.

Gone is star receive Wan’Dale Robinson, who is now a member of the New York Giants. While replacing a No. 1 target is never easy, Kentucky will look to fill the void with Virginia Tech transfer Tayvion Robinson and a highly-touted freshmen tandem of Barion Brown and Dane Key.

Tight end Keaton Upshaw will also look to get into the mix after missing all of 2021 due to injury.

If It Isn’t Broke, Still Fix It?

While Kentucky’s offense proved to be above average in most metrics, prepare to watch a new scheme as head coach Mark Stoops brings in a new offensive coordinator in former San Francisco 49ers quarterback coach Rich Scangarello.

Coming from the sought-after Sean McVay/Kyle Shanahan coaching tree, Scangarello will focus on the run to open the field for Levis to punish condensed defenses.

This turns the focus to returning running back Chris Rodriguez Jr., who comes into the season 1,134 yards away from breaking Benny Snell Jr.’s Kentucky career rushing record. A physical back, Rodriguez ran over opposing defenses to the tune of 1,379 yards and nine touchdowns last season.

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Familiar Faces

While the offense was the highlight of Kentucky’s season last year, the defense kept pace with top-50 ranks in Success Rate, Havoc and Finishing Drives.

Bringing back an astonishing TARP number of 82%, we can expect Kentucky’s defensive success to continue.

While Josh Paschal and Marquan McCall moved on to the NFL, they will be replaced by former five-star Justin Rogers at nose guard with four-star prospects Octavious Oxendine, Josaih Hayes and Tre’vonn Rybka joining up front.

Kentucky’s deep at the linebacker position, so it will be able to rotate players in and out and allow them to stay fresh throughout the game in its 3-4 defense.

While the defensive line and linebacker groups will see some continuity, the secondary is a key focus. The cornerback position, in particular, brings some cause for concern.

Suffering from a lack of depth, junior Carrington Valentine will be paired with transfers Keidron Smith from Ole Miss and Zion Childress from Texas State in a critical position. Pressure up front will be more important than ever to limit secondary exposure.

Verdict on Wildcats

While Georgia is still in a class of its own in the SEC East, Kentucky is knocking on the door with experience on both sides of the ball and a revamped offense to give elite defenses fits.

While I personally will not bet it, Action Network’s Collin Wilson thinks Kentucky is the best value bet to win the conference. He projects the Wildcats’ win total at 8.74, while SP+ has them at 8.1

Instead, I will be on their season win total over.

While juiced to the over of 7.5 and climbing up to 8.5 at some books, I’m fine with tying my money up over the course of the season, as Kentucky has a legitimate shot of repeating a nine-win regular season.

If it can down a rebuilding Florida after the Gators take on Utah, Kentucky can start 4-0 before a date with Ole Miss.

There’s a chance Kentucky’s first loss comes on the road against Tennessee. Assuming Georgia takes care of business, this gives room for two more losses against any of Ole Miss, South Carolina, Mississippi State, Missouri, Vanderbilt and Louisville.

Pick: Kentucky Over 7.5 Wins (-160)

Previous Picks: Miami Win Total Over 8.5 Wins · Miami to Win ACC Coastal (+150) · Alabama to Win SEC · Utah to Win Pac-12 (+400) · Utah Win Total Over 8.5 · UCLA Under 8.5 Wins

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Best bets for every game

Collin Wilson’s biggest weekly edges

Profitable data-driven system picks

Wimbledon Schedule & Draw: What Paths Look Like for Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams

wimbledon-schedule-draw-path-novak-djokovic-rafael-nadal-serena-williams

The 2022 Wimbledon Championships are upon us.

This year’s draw was released on Friday morning for both the men and women, offering us a look into what each player could face if he or she wants to take home a Grand Slam title.

On the men’s side, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal open up on opposite halves of the draw as the first and second seeds.

Djokovic and Nadal both have potentially tricky second round opponents. Djokovic could face Thanasi Kokkinakis while Nadal may have to deal with grass-court specialist Sam Querrey.

The Serbian is the favorite to win Wimbledon at -130, but Nadal is only the third-favorite at +750 at FanDuel.

Matteo Berrettini is the oddsmakers’ second choice to win the event, with a +600 price. Berrettini has won two titles in the two grass events he’s played this year and reached the final at Wimbledon last year.

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On the women’s side of the action, world No. 1 and +155 favorite Iga Swiatek opens her campaign with what should be fairly straightforward matches.

Her first seeded opponent projects to be Yulia Putintseva, the world No. 33.

Serena Williams will be playing in the event after a year off of the singles tour. Her last match came at Wimbledon in 2021, but she had to retire in the first set due to injury.

Williams got some warm up work in during the week, playing at Eastbourne in the doubles draw with Ons Jabeur.

The duo secured two wins before Jabeur had to withdraw with a knee injury.

It appears to be a very manageable draw for Williams, who could have drawn anyone being an unseeded wild card. She’ll face Harmony Tan in the first round.

The full Wimbledon schedule can be found below.

Day Round
Monday, June 27 Men’s/Women’s Round 1
Tuesday, June 28 Men’s/Women’s Round 1
Wednesday, June 29 Men’s/Women’s Round 2
Thursday, June 30 Men’s/Women’s Round 2
Friday, July 1 Men’s/Women’s Round 3
Saturday, July 2 Men’s/Women’s Round 3
Sunday, July 3 Men’s/Women’s Round 4
Monday, July 4 Men’s/Women’s Round 4
Tuesday, July 5 Men’s/Women’s Quarterfinals
Wednesday, July 6 Men’s/Women’s Quarterfinals
Thursday, July 7 Women’s Semifinals
Friday, July 8 Men’s Semifinals
Saturday, July 9 Women’s Final
Sunday, July 10 Men’s Final

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Astros vs. Yankees Betting Model Picks & Predictions: An Edge With Value on Friday Night

astros-vs-yankees-betting-model-picks-predictions-mlb-edge-friday-june-24-2022

Astros vs. Yankees Odds

Astros Odds +110
Yankees Odds -130
Over/Under 7.5
Date Friday, June 24
Time 7:05 p.m. ET
Channel Prime Video

*Odds as of Friday morning

Friday’s Houston Astros vs. New York Yankees MLB matchup will clearly be the most highly-anticipated game of tonight’s baseball slate.

First, the Yankees and Astros, respectively, currently sport the two best records in the American League.

Add in Thursday night’s come-from-behind, walk-off victory for the Bronx Bombers, and there’s even more excitement ahead of tonight’s Astros vs. Yankees matchup.

For the reasons above, MLB fans and recreational baseball bettors should show plenty of interest in Astros vs. Yankees, but this game is also showing as one of Friday’s top betting model edges.

So for those looking for a smart way to bet Friday night’s biggest MLB matchup, let’s dig in.

Astros vs. Yankees Pick

Earlier today, Cubs vs. Cardinals was offering Friday’s biggest MLB edge per the Action Network’s betting model.

However, Cubs vs. Cardinals now has some competition via Astros vs. Yankees.

Our MLB PRO Projections make this total 8.22, suggesting there’s plenty of value in the Astros vs. Yankees over.

In fact, the difference between our projection and the latest total of 7.5 (click here for live MLB odds) translates to a 4.3% edge, which is tied with Cubs vs. Cardinals for the biggest edge as of the time of writing.

It’s not often that the best matchup in a given baseball slate is showing value toward the over, but that’s exactly what we have ahead of Friday night’s Astros vs. Yankees showdown.

PRO Report Pick: Over 7.5

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Cubs vs. Cardinals Odds, Picks & Predictions: Friday’s Biggest Betting Model Edge

cubs-vs-cardinals-odds-picks-predictions-betting-model-friday-june-24-2022

Cubs vs. Cardinals Odds

Cubs Odds +135
Cardinals Odds -160
Over/Under 9 (-105/-115)
Date Friday, June 24
Time 8:15 p.m. ET
Channel Apple TV+

*Odds as of Friday morning

One of the best rivalries in sports gets underway on Friday with the Chicago Cubs traveling to St. Louis to take on the Cardinals in the first game of a four-game series.

With the calendar only a week away from flipping to July, St. Louis finds itself in a dogfight with Milwaukee for the NL Central lead.

Chicago, on the other hand, is not.

At just 26-44 on the season, the Cubs have been one of the worst teams in baseball to this point.

But, you know what they say about rivalries: “When these two teams get together, you can throw the record books out the window.”

Using our MLB betting model, let’s examine the smartest way to bet Cubs vs. Cardinals on Friday night.

Cubs vs. Cardinals Pick


After opening at 8.5, the Cubs vs. Cardinals over/under has leaked up to 9 across the market, and our MLB PRO Projections suggest that it’s time to buy back that line move.

The Action Network’s MLB betting model projects this total at 8.06, resulting in a 4.3% edge, the biggest of Friday’s baseball slate, based on the latest Cubs vs. Cardinals odds.

Interestingly, the under is essentially settled at -115 as of the time of writing, but, as always, be sure to make a quick visit to our MLB Live Odds Page to confirm that there’s not a better line (or vig) available.

PRO Report Pick: Under 9 (-115)

_PromoID=[16451]

Caesars Promo: Code ACTION2215 Grants a $1,500 Risk-Free Bet on Stanley Cup Final Game 5!

Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final is scheduled for tonight at the Ball Arena. Do you think the Avalanche close out the series in front of their home crowd? Or can the Lightning rally for a win with their backs against the wall? Regardless of what you’re predicting for tonight’s matchup, you’ll want to bet the action with this NHL betting promo code from Caesars Sportsbook:

New Caesars users can claim a $1,500 risk-free first bet for Game 5 of Avalanche-Lightning! That’s right … a four-figure risk-free bet! And this promo code works for any betting market for the NHL Stanley Cup Final, including team moneylines, player props and much more. Not much of a hockey bettor? No worries — this code also works for MLB and the WNBA as well. Just make sure to use the code ACTION2215 when you sign up. Then you’ve locked in this special offer for a $1,500 risk-free bet.

Again, be sure to either use the links on this page or use code ACTION2215, or else you won’t be eligible for these offers.

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Caesars Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Michigan, New Jersey, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Tennessee, Indiana, West Virginia, and Virginia — is offering new users in all of its states a $1,500 risk-free bet!

Already have Caesars? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here and New York-specific offers here.

Best Caesars Promo Codes for the NHL Playoffs, MLB and More

Caesars is one of the fastest growing brands in the new sports betting industry, and for good reason: They’re one of the most generous sportsbooks to new and existing users, as shown by this offer. Not many places are giving away a $1,500 risk-free first bet!

Here’s how the promotion works: Sign up using the link on this page and with code ACTION2215 and make a deposit of up to $1,500 (you won’t need a deposit code). That’s all you have to do: Your first bet up to $1,500 will be completely risk-free.

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Here are the details for Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final (as if you needed a reminder):

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Colorado Avalanche, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use your $1,500 risk-free bet on baseball, here’s today’s MLB slate:

  • New York Mets at Miami Marlins, Friday at 6:40 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Friday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Boston Red Sox at Cleveland Guardians, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Pittsburgh Pirates at Tampa Bay Rays, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves, Friday at 7:20 p.m. ET
  • Washington Nationals at Texas Rangers, Friday at 8:05 p.m. ET
  • Oakland Athletics at Kansas City Royals, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Colorado Rockies at Minnesota Twins, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Toronto Blue Jays at Milwaukee Brewers, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals, Friday at 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels, Friday at 9:38 p.m. ET
  • Detroit Tigers at Arizona Diamondbacks, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Cincinnati Reds at San Francisco Giants, Friday at 10:15 p.m. ET

Caesars Odds Boosts and Offers for Friday, June 24

The bonuses keep coming at Caesars, even after you’ve redeemed a new user promo. For example, you can score new boosted odds markets daily! Here’s one available now:

  • Steven Stamkos Goal & Bryce Harper HR on 6/24: boosted to +1500 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5114, 5113, 1251, 25]

FanDuel Promo Code: Grab $200 on a Stanley Cup Close Out Game!

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Ok, there’s some good news and bad news tonight. Good news: we just might be crowning a new Stanley Cup champion tonight when the Colorado Avalanche square off against the Lightning up 3-1. Bad news: this very well could be your last chance to bet the NHL for the 2021-22 season. Well, if you’re going to go out, you may as well go out with a bang. FanDuel is letting you do just that, offering you free money on the Cup Final.

Not signed up at FanDuel yet? Then you can cash in with their special offer for new users (and you won’t need a promo code): Bet $5 on the Stanley Cup Finals, Get $200 No Matter What! Bet on the Avs to hoist the Cup. Or the Lightning to stay alive in the Rockies. It does not matter. You literally cannot lose here.

One thing to keep in mind: You don’t need a promo code for this offer for Action users, but you will have to click on the link below to redeem.

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FanDuel Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Arizona, Connecticut, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming — is giving all new users a risk-free sports bet.

Already have FanDuel? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best FanDuel Promo Codes and Bonus Offers for the Stanley Cup Finals, the MLB, and More

FanDuel, originally a company focused completely around daily fantasy sports (DFS), has now become a gambling giant in the U.S., with the country’s biggest sportsbook and online casino. They’re always on the cutting edge when it comes to their app and product, and you certainly won’t be disappointed with adding them to your sports betting portfolio.

They’re also very generous to both new and existing users. This offer is just for new ones, and here’s how it works: Simply sign up at FanDuel using this link, deposit, and place your risk-free bet. If you win, you keep the profits. If you lose, FanDuel gives you the money you wagered back, up to $1,000.

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If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 5:

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Colorado Avalanche, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for tonight:

  • New York Mets at Miami Marlins, Friday at 6:40 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Friday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Boston Red Sox at Cleveland Guardians, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Pittsburgh Pirates at Tampa Bay Rays, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves, Friday at 7:20 p.m. ET
  • Washington Nationals at Texas Rangers, Friday at 8:05 p.m. ET
  • Oakland Athletics at Kansas City Royals, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Colorado Rockies at Minnesota Twins, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Toronto Blue Jays at Milwaukee Brewers, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals, Friday at 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels, Friday at 9:38 p.m. ET
  • Detroit Tigers at Arizona Diamondbacks, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Cincinnati Reds at San Francisco Giants, Friday at 10:15 p.m. ET

_PromoID=[4778, 1251, 5113, 5114]

BetMGM Promo: Code ACTIONNHL Grants a FREE $200 on Avalanche-Lightning Tonight!

betmgm sportsbook promo code and bonus offer

Ready for Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final? The Avalanche host the Lightning tonight with a chance to close out the series and secure the Cup. And if you’re looking to bet on what could be the final game of this NHL season, you can take advantage of this amazing betting promo code from BetMGM Sportsbook: Bet $10 on Game 5 of Lightning-Avalanche, Win $200 if your team scores 1+ goal!

Yeah, you read that correctly. ONE goal! Just sign up using the links in this article or use the promo code ACTIONNHL to take advantage. Once your wager is placed, you’ll make an easy $200 on Friday night as soon as your team nets its first goal. It doesn’t get much easier than this no-brainer promotion.

To take advantage, make sure to use code ACTIONNHL simply click one of the links below.

Win $200 if the Avalanche or Lightning Score a Goal!

Bet $10+ on Avalanche-Lightning

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ goal

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible no-brainer promo to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best BetMGM Promo Codes the NHL Stanley Cup Finals, MLB and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $200 to start your account. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using code ACTIONNHL and bet $10 on the Stanley Cup Finals game of your choice. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus, and you’ll get credited $200 if your team nets a single goal (or more) in the game.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Win $200 if the Avalanche or Lightning Score a Goal!

Bet $10+ on Avalanche-Lightning

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ goal

New users only

 

Not a fan of this NHL offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

_PromoID=[245, 16447]

If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 5:

  • Colorado Avalanche at Tampa Bay Lightning, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for Friday:

  • New York Mets at Miami Marlins, Friday at 6:40 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Friday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Boston Red Sox at Cleveland Guardians, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Pittsburgh Pirates at Tampa Bay Rays, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves, Friday at 7:20 p.m. ET
  • Washington Nationals at Texas Rangers, Friday at 8:05 p.m. ET
  • Oakland Athletics at Kansas City Royals, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Colorado Rockies at Minnesota Twins, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Toronto Blue Jays at Milwaukee Brewers, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals, Friday at 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels, Friday at 9:38 p.m. ET
  • Detroit Tigers at Arizona Diamondbacks, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Cincinnati Reds at San Francisco Giants, Friday at 10:15 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Friday, June 24

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • 1 or less goals scored in the first period of Avalanche vs. Lightning: boosted to +110 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5113, 1251, 57, 4778]

BetMGM Bonus Code: Cash in on a Potential Cup Clincher!

betmgm sportsbook promo code and bonus offer

Ladies and gentleman, the Cup is in the building TONIGHT. That’s right — the Colorado Avalanche have the chance to finish off the Lightning and hoist the Stanley Cup on their own home ice. A win would mean their first Stanley Cup title since 2001. And in honor of this momentous occasion, BetMGM has decided to give you an amazing offer…

BetMGM Sportsbook is giving you a $1,000 risk-free bet on Game 5 of the Stanley Cup. That’s right — you can bet tonight’s game using only free money. You win and the winnings are yours. You lose and you get reimbursed what you lost. Special promos like this can’t be found just anywhere. To take advantage either use code ACTION or simply click one of the links below.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible risk-free offer to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here and use bonus code ACTION.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at other top sports betting sites.

Best BetMGM Bonus Codes for the Stanley Cup, and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $1,000 to start your BetMGM career. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using bonus code ACTION, deposit, and bet up to $1,000 on any Stanley Cup or MLB game. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus. If your bet wins, congratulations — you keep the profits. But if it loses, no sweat! BetMGM reimburses you up to $1,000 in free bets.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

 

Not a fan of this offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

_PromoID=[5114, 5342]

If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 5:

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Colorado Avalanche, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for Friday:

  • New York Mets at Miami Marlins, Friday at 6:40 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Friday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Boston Red Sox at Cleveland Guardians, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Pittsburgh Pirates at Tampa Bay Rays, Friday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves, Friday at 7:20 p.m. ET
  • Washington Nationals at Texas Rangers, Friday at 8:05 p.m. ET
  • Oakland Athletics at Kansas City Royals, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Colorado Rockies at Minnesota Twins, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Toronto Blue Jays at Milwaukee Brewers, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Friday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals, Friday at 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels, Friday at 9:38 p.m. ET
  • Detroit Tigers at Arizona Diamondbacks, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Friday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Cincinnati Reds at San Francisco Giants, Friday at 10:15 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Friday, June 24

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Mets, Yankees, and Red Sox all to win: boosted to +575 odds
  • Many more!

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Caesars Launches Horse Racing App in Ohio

horse racing picks santa anita-best bets-exotics pick 5-saturday may 16

Caesars Sportsbook has joined the Ohio horse racing stable as the Caesars Racebook App launched in The Buckeye State on June 1.

Caesars and the NYRA Bets (the New York Racing Association) partnered up to offer the online horse betting app in Ohio. The prominent sportsbook is expected to also join the Ohio sports betting market once legal mobile betting goes live on Jan. 1, 2023.

“The launch of Caesars Racebook is an important milestone as we continue to add wagering opportunities for our customers and live streaming content for the first time,” Dan Shapiro, Senior Vice President and Chief Development Officer of Caesars Digital, said in a statement. “Caesars Racebook is truly differentiated as the first horse racing advance deposit wagering app to include our award-winning Caesars Rewards loyalty program. We look forward to welcoming new horse racing customers and existing fans onto the platform and to working with NYRA Bets to grow horse racing as we deploy Caesars Racebook with plans to launch in about 30 states across the country.”

For horse bettors, this app couldn’t have come at a more optimal time as most of the major professional sports leagues are in their offseason this summer. Ohio bettors still have a while to wait for the online sports betting launch at the start of next year.

Caesars Racebook App Offerings

  • Caesars Rewards — As expected, users have access to Caesars’ renowned loyalty program. Reward points are available to redeem in the Caesars Racebook Store.
  • Live betting on over 300 races around the world — Bet on races at tracks like Belmont, Dubai, and Royal Ascot.
  • Live streaming capability — Users can track their bets through the app, which enhances the user experience. Streaming options include live or on-demand races.
  • Caesars Racebook welcome offer — New users are eligible to receive a  100% deposit match on up to $500.

The Caesars Racebook app is only available on iOS and Caesars plans to launch its platform on mobile web browsers, desktops, and Android soon. Keep in mind before creating an account that you will need an iOS mobile device (or iPad) to download and play the Caesars Racebook app.

“The new Caesars Racebook app, which utilizes the NYRA Bets interface and technology, will expand access to world-class horse racing now and in the future,” said Matt Feig, General Manager of NYRA Bets, in a statement. “The partnership between NYRA Bets and Caesars is a win for horse racing, its stakeholders and countless racetracks around the world.”

Background on the NYRA

The New York Racing Association was founded in 1955 and is headquartered in Jamaica, Queens. Additionally, the NYRA owns New York’s top-three racing tracks: Saratoga Racing Course, Aqueduct Racetrack, and Belmont Park.

The NYRA is also part of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA), which means they are a fully legit horse racing operator.

MLB Picks & Predictions for Friday: Mets vs. Marlins & Mariners vs. Angels Among Sharpest Baseball Bets

mlb-picks-predictions-sharp-betting-mets-vs-marlins-mariners-vs-angels-friday-june-24

It’s a Friday in June, meaning many will be taking advantage of the warm weather by heading straight to Happy Hour and dinner or even cutting out of work early for an extended weekend.

As a result, casual bettors may be distracted by social plans and not spend as much time handicapping Friday MLB slates throughout the summer as other days of the week.

If you’re one who does enjoy some action with your Friday after work beverages, fear not, because the Action Network’s MLB PRO betting tools can quickly pinpoint the games already attracting attention from the market’s top baseball bettors.

So with this in mind, here are Friday’s three sharpest MLB bets, including Mets vs. Marlins, Blue Jays vs. Brewers and Mariners vs. Angels.

MLB Picks for Friday

*Odds and betting data as of Friday morning

Mets vs. Marlins Pick

6:40 p.m. ET | BSFL

When it comes to one-sided wiseguy action, Mets vs. Marlins is leading the way as of the time of writing.

Miami opened as a -115 favorite over New York at DraftKings, and pro bettors quickly pounded the Marlins.

Six separate waves of market-moving action have been tracked on Miami by Action Labs’ Bet Signals, explaining why this line has settled between -140 and -145 at most shops.

PRO Report Pick: Marlins -140

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Blue Jays vs. Brewers Pick

8:10 p.m. ET | BSWI

This game is interesting because the line history tells a more important story than simply comparing opening to current odds.

For example, Milwaukee opened as a +125 underdog against Toronto, which is where this line sits at sportsbooks like DraftKings and PointsBet.

However, the key piece of data here is that the Brew Crew actually floated to +140 as recently as Friday morning, and that’s when the wiseguys struck.

Our MLB PRO tools tracked two separate smart money indicators this morning, so it’s no surprise to see this number back around its opener.

PRO Report Pick: Brewers +125

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Mariners vs. Angels Pick

9:38 p.m. ET | BSW

When it comes to Mariners vs. Angels on Friday night, pros are back on the favorites.

Sharp money has driven the Angels from -140 to -155 at DraftKings, with PointsBet and BetMGM already at -160.

PRO Report Pick: Angels -160

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Neil Magny vs. Shavkat Rakhmonov UFC Odds, Pick & Prediction: The Time Prop to Bet (Saturday, June 25)

neil magny vs. shavkat rakhmonov-ufc-odds-picks-predictions-betting-saturday, june 25

Neil Magny vs. Shavkat Rakhmonov Odds

Magny Odds +370
Rakhmonov Odds -450
Over/Under 2.5 (+125 / -145)
Venue UFC APEX
Time Approx. 12 a.m. ET
Channel ESPN
Odds as of Friday and via Caesars.

While the main event features lightweight contenders, ranked welterweights are squaring off in the co-main.

Neil Magny has been a fixture of the second half of the welterweight rankings for a long time, with a 19-7 UFC record dating back to 2013.

Across from the cage from him is the rising prospect Shavkat Rakhmonov. Rakhmonov is a perfect 15-0 in his professional fight career, with each win coming inside the distance. He’s 3-0 in the UFC and has the potential to be the next big thing at 170.

That is, if he can get through the veteran Magny on Saturday. We’ll break down his chances, as well as the best bet for Saturday’s co-main event below.

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Tale of the Tape

Magny Rakhmonov
Record 26-9 15-0
Avg. Fight Time 12:53 5:20
Height 6’3″ 6’1″
Weight (pounds) 170 lbs. 170 lbs.
Reach (inches) 80″ 77″
Stance Orthodox Orthodox
Date of birth 8/3/87 10/23/94
Sig Strikes Per Min 3.67 2.94
SS Accuracy 45% 53%
SS Absorbed Per Min 2.17 1.56
SS Defense 55% 57%
Take Down Avg. 2.37 1.88
TD Acc 40% 33%
TD Def 58% 100%
Submission Avg 0.3 1.9

After picking up finishes over lesser competition early in his career, Magny has settled in as a minute-winner against upper-level welterweights. He’s solidly well-rounded with above-average output in both striking and grappling.

His biggest strength is probably his reach. At 80 inches, it’s exceptionally long for the division, allowing him to stay out of range of most of his opponents. His striking defense is excellent from both a strikes absorbed and percentage standpoint.

He’s also solid on the ground, picking up over two takedowns per fight.  He has just one submission win in the UFC, though, and three losses. That could be a problem against Rakhmonov, and I doubt Magny tries to bring this one to the mat.

Rakhmonov is making a major step up in competition here after three extremely dominant UFC wins. While he has a Sambo background, his striking stands out compared to the other Soviet prospects we’ve seen.

That was on display in his spinning hook kick knockout of Carlston Harris in his last bout.

He’s been excellent defensively as well. Like Magny, he’s huge for the division with a 77-inch reach. Of course, he’s still at a disadvantage against Magny, his first UFC opponent who’s longer than he is.

His easiest path to victory is probably through grappling, given Magny’s track record. It’s telling that Rakhmonov has never scored multiple takedowns in a round — his opponents generally don’t get back up.

Getting Magny there in the first place will be a challenge, however, as Magny has solid takedown defense.

Of course, getting inside his reach will be an even bigger problem, especially for a Sambo fighter who relies more on throws and trips than shooting for takedowns from a distance.

Magny vs. Rakhmonov Pick

This is a major step up in competition for Rakhmonov, but betting markets think he’ll handle it easily. He’s a -410 or so favorite depending on the book, which is far more than I’m willing to lay against a dangerous veteran opponent.

It should be more competitive than that, though, which is why I’m targeting some time props here — my favorite of which is over 1.5 rounds, currently -177 on BetRivers.

Magny’s reach creates a tough puzzle to solve, and I expect some feeling out between these two fighters early on. Magny probably won’t succumb to the first takedown either and has enough up his sleeve to survive some time on the ground with Rakhmonov.

Since I don’t see Rakhmonov finishing this one on the feet — and it takes longer to get finishes on the ground — the fight to start Round 3 at -108 is interesting as well. Over 1.5 is my preference, though.

The Pick: Over 1.5 Rounds (-177)

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2022 Travelers Championship Round 2 Odds & Picks: Seamus Power, Joel Dahmen Have Value Entering Friday

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The stars came out firing on Thursday at TPC River Highlands as Rory McIlroy set the pace with an 8-under 62, besting Xander Schauffele by one shot. Patrick Cantlay put together a great round of his own in the afternoon with a 6-under 64 and will go into Friday just two shots back. JT Poston had the surprise round of the day as he matched McIlroy’s 62.

I expect we’ll see the course dry out as overnight rain helped contribute to the low scores, providing a soft track entering the opening round. If they can dodge the weather the rest of the way, hot temperatures should bring tougher conditions over the final 54-holes.

We are in a similar scenario to last week. With several of the field’s top players at the top of the leaderboard, we should find some good value going into Round 2. We’ll take a look at the stokes gained data to see who stands out with some value on Friday.

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Strokes Gained Explanation

Strokes Gained can give golf bettors, DFS players and fans way more detail on how a golfer has truly played by measuring each shot in relation to the rest of the field.

Using the millions of data points it collects, the TOUR calculates how many shots on average it takes a player to get the ball in the hole from every distance and situation. If a player beats those averages, he’s gaining strokes on the field.

Every situation in golf is different. Strokes Gained measures how players perform relative to the situation.

In this piece, we’ll touch on a variety of Strokes Gained metrics:

  • Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee
  • Strokes Gained: Approach
  • Strokes Gained: Around-the-Green
  • Strokes Gained: Putting
  • Strokes Gained: Ball-Striking (which is Off-the-Tee + Approach)
  • Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green (which is Ball-Striking + Around-the-Green)

In general, SG: Ball Striking and SG: Tee-to-Green are the most stable long term, while putting is more prone to volatility.

You can often find live-betting advantages by identifying golfers who are hitting the ball well, but are just not getting putts to drop. Likewise, players with high SG: Putting numbers may regress moving forward.

3 Golfers to Buy in Round 2

Seamus Power is the player who stands out as a traditional buy for us heading into Round 2. He gained better than a shot on the field in each category tee to green and 4.27 shots on the field total in that metric. Power’s issue came on the greens, where he lost better than a shot with the putter. It was a rare off day with the flatstick for the Irishman as he ranks 32nd on TOUR in SG: Putting this season. His ball striking was good enough to still carve out a 3-under round on Thursday despite the balky putter and I like his chances to bounce back on the greens in his early round on Friday morning. Power is listed at +3500 on DraftKings, which is a nice value for a player in good form and just a handful of shots behind the lead with a long way to go.

One of the more impressive performances of last week at the U.S. Open came from Joel Dahmen. He really showed that the top of his game could compete in an elite field like we saw at The Country Club and it appears he has carried that game with him to Connecticut.

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Dahmen gained 2.67 shots on the field with his irons on Thursday, which contributed heavily to his 2.91 SG: Tee-to-Green. He was also much better off the tee than the numbers show as he lost 1.77 shots when his tee ball went out of bounds off the tee on the par-5 13th. If we take that one errant swing away, he gained 1.45 shots on the field in that category on his 14 other drives. I’ll happily take a shot on him at extended odds, +6600 on BetRivers, to make a move Friday in order to get positioned for another late weekend tee time.

Brian Harman is a name who was popular coming into the week and he sent his gambling fans into a frenzy with an opening double bogey. Harman would eventually gather himself and post three straight birdies on his back nine to get to 2-under for the round. He was really pretty solid on the day outside of that one hole and this is a course where he is comfortable. It’s not out of the realm of possibilities he gets back in the mix to contend at +6600, but my focus would be on short term matchups, DFS and top 10 type of placement odds heading into Round 2.

3 Golfers to Fade in Round 2

Keith Mitchell sticks out in the fade column in part because he has a big negative number on approach, but that is due in large part to his approach at the 17th, which landed in the water. The bigger issue for me is that he lost strokes on approach on 10 holes today, meaning it wasn’t just one swing that was off for him. The former Georgia Bulldog has struggled with his irons this year and he did so again Thursday. I don’t see him being able to maintain his spot within the top 10 this weekend unless he gets his approach play going.

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It’s been quite a while since we’ve seen Harris English on the course, much less near the top of the leaderboard. He’s in the top 10 after the opening round, but he really needed a heavy lean on the short game in order to post his 4-under 66. He gained more than three shots on the field around the green as he holed one shot from off the green for birdie at the 10th. English was merely average with his ball striking in the opening round and I question if he is in form to really compete through the weekend. All of that adds up to a fade for me going into the second round.

Kevin Kisner hasn’t had his best year in 2022 and has really struggled with his game of late as he has five consecutive missed cuts. He’s 2-under going into the second round this week, but the numbers don’t look as though he has necessarily found anything in his game. He gained 3.66 shots on the field with his short game in the opening round and lost shots in both ball striking metrics. Even on some of the holes where Kisner was scoring, he was losing strokes to the field on approach and even as good as his short game can be, it’s just not sustainable for him to stay in the mix without striking the ball well.

Strokes Gained Data for All Players in Round 1

Early 2023 NBA Rookie of the Year Odds: Paolo Banchero & Jabari Smith Favorites Ahead of Draft

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2023 NBA Rookie of the Year Odds

Odds via Caesars

Player Odds
Paolo Banchero +350
Jabari Smith +350
Jaden Ivey +550
Chet Holmgren +550
Keegan Murray +900
Bennedcit Mathurin +1000
Dyson Daniels +1400
Shaedon Sharpe +1400
Johnny Davis +1800
Ousmane Dieng +1800
Jalen Williams +2000
Mark Williams +2500
Jalen Duren +2500
Ochai Agbaji +2500
AJ Griffin +3000
EJ Liddell +4000
Blake Wesley +4000
Jeremy Sochan +4000
Jaden Hardy +5000
Walker Kessler +5000
Malaki Branham +5000
Kennedy Chandler +6000
MarJon Beauchamp +6000
Dalen Terry +6000
Wendell Moore +6000

Ahead of Thursday’s NBA Draft, Paolo Banchero and Jabari Smith are the co-favorites to win the Rookie of the Year Award, according to odds posted at Caesars.

Smith is expected to be the No. 1 overall pick, although Banchero’s betting odds have been steamed the past few days to make it a sweat. If Banchero doesn’t go second, it’s widely reported his floor is No. 3 to the Rockets.

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Those two come in ahead of the favorites to go second and fourth on Thursday: Chet Holmgren and Jaden Ivey. Draft pundits drool over Holmgren’s potential, but he is also a bit of an unknown with his slim frame. Ivey had a monster year for Purdue and his game could translate better to the NBA than others. Where he lands is a bit of a mystery thanks to the unpredictable Sacramento Kings holding the fourth pick.

The only other player with single-digit odds is Iowa’s Keegan Murray (+900). Murray is considered by some to be more NBA-ready than others and could go as high as fourth. Another player in consideration for the top five is Arizona’s Bennedict Mathurin (+1000).

The draft is at 8 p.m. ET and these players will finally find homes after months of combines, workouts, interviews and rumors.

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Phillies vs. Padres MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Musgrove Set to Stymie Philadelphia (Thursday, June 23)

phillies vs padres odds-picks-predictions-mlb-june 23

Phillies vs. Padres Odds

Phillies Odds +145
Padres Odds -175
Over/Under 7 (-120 / +100)
Time 9:40 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

One of the hottest teams in baseball just a week ago, the Philadelphia Phillies, find themselves in search of a much-needed win here in San Diego against the Padres.

The test will be tough with Joe Musgrove on the bump for the home team, but is it one which Philadelphia may be able to pass? Let’s dig into this one.

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Phillies Need Bats to Come Back Around

Every good thing eventually comes to an end, and that’s what just happened to the Phillies’ insane run when they traveled to Texas. After winning 15 of 18, they were swept in a miniature two-game series, and now are suddenly staring down the barrel of a four-game losing streak.

Taking a step back and looking at the Phillies’ performance at the plate over the last week, it’s easy to see why things are crumbling. They’re down in 27th place in that span with a 74 wRC+ with just a .118 isolated power. They’re making enough contact and getting on base with a 10.9% walk rate and low 18.5% strikeout rate, but the contact simply hasn’t been of the highest quality.

Ranger Suarez hasn’t been of the highest quality, either. In what can only be considered a disappointing season to this point, the lefty has posted a 4.43 ERA in 65 innings with a 4.21 xERA a season after cruising through 106 innings with a 1.36 ERA.

Suarez’s strikeouts are down big-time from a 25.6% rate in 2021 to 18.8% this year, and his walk rate has climbed 2.2%. He’s been able to pitch to contact as well as he did last year, but the lack of swings and misses has taken a lot of the wind out of the lefty’s sails. He’s walked seven batters in his last two starts and just allowed three runs over 5 2/3 against the lowly Nationals.

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Musgrove a Force For Padres

On the other side of this one, Musgrove has managed to maintain the high level we’ve seen over the last couple of years. He continues to use his slider more and more, and that’s certainly no surprise given the success he’s had with the pitch.

Hitters are just 10-for-79 against Musgrove’s slider and that’s helped bring the batting average against his fastball down to .261 from .319 a year ago.

All that has amounted to a very good season. Musgrove has put up a stupid 1.59 ERA in 12 starts, going 8-0 in the process. His 2.55 xERA is in the top 8% of the league, and his hard-hit rate is a tasty 35.4% with a great 26.3% strikeout rate. He’s allowed just three earned runs in his last five outings.

The Padres also have been incredible at the plate over the last week with a fourth-ranked 134 wRC+ and super-low 19.1% strikeout rate. They’re also importantly ninth in contact rate.

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Phillies-Padres Pick

Contact is going to be hard to come by here for the Phillies, and the fact that they have made good contact at such a low rate is incredibly concerning here. Musgrove has truly been one of the best in the game this season, and Philadelphia’s struggles at the plate pre-date its three-game losing streak.

Suarez has been a nightmare for bettors this season, and while he hasn’t really blown up in any one start, this is going to be a really difficult challenge for him. I think the Padres are a bit mispriced here.

Pick: Padres ML (-150)

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Thursday MLB Props Odds, Picks: 2 Bets for Framber Valdez, Ranger Suarez (June 23)

mlb props odds-picks-predictions-ranger suarez-strikeout totals-phillies vs padres-june 23

The Action Network’s player prop team finally had an 0-2 day on Wednesday after a very hot string of days.

We’re looking to bounce back with two plus-money player props on Thursday’s slate.

Our Action Labs Props Tool grades each prop on a scale from 1-10, and I’ll be sure to include the grade for each of my betting recommendations in my discussions below.

Framber Valdez over 5.5 Strikeouts (+105)

Astros @ Yankees
First Pitch 7:05 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

Framber Valdez is just consistent.

Since he was inserted into the rotation full-time with Houston in 2020, Valdez has made 45 starts while pitching 286 2/3 innings. Valdez is pitching a whopping 6 1/3 innings during his average start.

That’s staggering in this era.

He’s done so effectively, as well. He carries a 2.78 ERA this season and his 3.15 xERA doesn’t show too strong a likelihood for regression. He’s allowed two or fewer runs in nine of his 13 starts this season, and the Astros are 8-5 in Valdez starts as a result.

Valdez doesn’t blow anyone away, averaging around eight K/9 with mediocre swing-and-miss statistics (10.1 SwSt%, 27.1 CSW%). But he pitches so many innings and generates so many outs that he often cashes these strikeout totals.

For example, Valdez has cashed this total in 7-of-13 starts this season (54%, -117 implied odds to the over) and in 21-of-40 starts dating back to 2021 (53%, -111 implied odds to the over).

Yet, we get to bet this prop at plus-money.

It also helps that the Yankees are the kings of the three true outcomes. The Yanks will either walk, strike out, or hit a home run. But their league-leading 120 wRC+ justifies that approach.

However, the Yankees’ platoon splits are must-know information.

  • 2022 Yankees vs RHP: 121 wRC+ (1st), 20.5 K% (8th)
  • 2022 Yankees vs LHP: 117 wRC+ (5th), 24.1 K% (27th)

And against lefties over the past month, the Yankees are striking out at a ridiculous 25.7% rate, good for the third-highest over that stretch.

Our Action Labs Player Props tool projects Valdez for six strikeouts on the nose today, and that gives me all the reason I need to bet this prop.

Pick: Over 5.5 Ks (+105)

Action Labs Grade: 8/10

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Ranger Suarez over 4.5 Strikeouts (+120)

Orioles @ Cardinals
First Pitch 9:40 p.m. ET
Best Line BetRivers

Ranger Suarez isn’t having the dominant season he had in 2021. After posting a 1.36 ERA over 36 appearances in the bullpen, as a closer and as a starter, Suarez is regressing in a full-time starter role.

His ERA, xERA, FIP and xFIP all sit between 4.17 and 4.43. His strikeouts are down, his walks are up, and his WHIP is up over 1.50.

All-in-all, it’s been ugly.

However, his strikeout totals are starting to come around.

After failing to reach this number in his first five starts, Suarez has now cashed over 4.5 Ks in six of his last eight. He even managed to sneak over 4.5 twice against the Dodgers and once against the Nationals, two of the better plate-discipline teams in the league.

Our Action Labs Player Props tool projects Suarez for five strikeouts tonight, giving us nearly a 10% edge over the plus-money line DraftKings is offering.

Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (+120)

Action Labs Grade: 8/10

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Kyrie Irving & Kevin Durant Trade Rumors Force Movement in Nets 2023 NBA Title Odds

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Welcome to the annual offseason game of “Where will Kyrie Irving play next season?” It just so happens it’s getting started on NBA Draft night.

According to reports from ESPN and Stadium, there is already drama building between Irving, Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets. The official word given to Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania is that Irving has a list of teams ready to request a trade to, should he and Brooklyn not agree on a contract.

And because Durant and Irving came to Brooklyn as a package, the Irving speculation brings Durant’s future into question.

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These are just rumors at this point, likely spread by Irving’s group to begin negotiating in the public. However, it’s strong enough to cause an odds movement on the NBA Championship board.

Following the Golden State Warriors‘ win over the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals, the SuperBook opened Brooklyn at +800 to win next year’s title. Following today’s news, that number has been adjusted to +1400.

The other moves are minor. Boston is down to +700 from +800 and the Philadelphia 76ers are now +1200, down from +1400.

The Warriors are still the +600 favorite. The Clippers are +700.

Irving’s early wish list, should he ask for a trade, includes the Lakers, Clippers, Heat, Mavericks, Knicks and 76ers. As ESPN notes, those teams do not have the cap space to make a move happen on their own without a trade from the Nets. That list is also from Irving’s point of view — not the other team’s.

If Irving goes, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Durant bolt, too. While Durant does not have any trade restrictions, it’s unlikely a team would send a haul for someone of his ilk who didn’t want to be there.

In the hours before the NBA Draft, with Irving leaks beginning, we can now say the offseason has officially begun.

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2022 NBA Draft Betting Picks: AJ Griffin to Knicks? Keegan Murray or Jaden Ivey?

nba-draft-bets-aj-griffin-to-the-knicks-keegan-murray-or-jaden-ivey

The NBA draft is less than 36 hours away and the information/rumors/intel/smokescreens/nonsense is flying fast and furious. Here’s a look at the latest intel through an actionable lens.

Top 3:

Jabari Smith is likely to go No. 1, but not at the prices he’s listed at. The implied odds for Smith (as high as 78% at some places) are not in line with the uncertainty surrounding Orlando’s decision. The Magic could take any one of the top three (Smith, Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren) and it would not be categorized as a “surprise.” But trying to find value is difficult.

The Magic are being impressively tight-lipped about this endeavor. Even ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski would only go so far as to say it was “likely” Smith goes No. 1. It’s not typical for there to still be this level of uncertainty. After sharp bettors hammered Banchero to go No. 1 on Monday, they came back and bet Smith at a lower price (-130 was the lowest I saw), effectively creating a hedge for “not Chet Holmgren.”

One suggestion that multiple league sources not involved with talks have bandied about (i.e. this is speculative) is that the Magic and Thunder are both trying to bluff Houston into giving up additional assets to draft Banchero. The Rockets are known to be locked in/zeroed in/completely comfortable drafting Banchero. He’s their guy.

So now it’s a question of whether Houston likes him so much to trade up a la Philadelphia with Markelle Fultz and Jayson Tatum, or whether they’ll call the bluff and dare either team to take him.

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There’s a lot of smoke around Holmgren to Oklahoma City if Smith goes to Orlando. I’m willing to be wrong on this, it isn’t sourced. But Holmgren genuinely does not feel like the kind of player OKC would pick with such an important selection.

If there was a bet available for “Houston takes Banchero, regardless of pick number” then I would bet that, even at a steep number. As it is, unless you got Smith at +1000 back in February (like a certain writer did) and then Banchero at +900 or better, there’s no value. Holmgren is the one bet with the best chance at a sizable plus number (+500 at Caesars), but his slip threat is higher than the other two.

Keegan Murray No. 4 +130 (PointsBet)

You have to sort through a key question here:

Is consensus best player available more important, or telegraphed information?

The CBPA by every smart draft person I know is that Jaden Ivey is (at least) the 4th best prospect in this draft, with some considering him as high as No. 2. So, by that logic, Ivey should go 4th.

But this is the Kings, with an inherent bent toward chaos. And Ivey’s a point guard when they have not only De’Aaron Fox and a commitment to seeing what it looks like with Fox and Domantas Sabonis together, but also Davion Mitchell ready for a larger role.

The Kings want to make the playoffs, now, immediately, next season. Does Ivey help them the most toward that goal? Setting aside whether you should be using the No. 4 pick in pursuit of that goal specifically, there are other players who may be better fits or more immediate contributors.

Enter Keegan Murray.

Murray’s fans have swelled in workout season, with the Spurs, Hawks and Pelicans among the team with interest in trading up to take him.

Then there’s the Knicks. Multiple league sources said the Kings rejected an offer from the Knicks for the No. 4 spot that was centered around former All-Star Julius Randle and other assets. If that offer wasn’t enough to get the 4th pick, what will? If the Knicks could get the pick somehow, the selection is likely Ivey. Not only does Ivey fit a need for the Knicks, but he’s repped by CAA. CAA has longstanding and current ties with the Knicks, including current Knicks President Leon Rose.

It’s no secret Ivey’s representatives have been trying to find a team to trade up and take Ivey given the Kings’ relative disinterest in Ivey.

So we get Murray at a plus number when multiple teams want him, the Kings reportedly want him if they keep the pick and the biggest threat to trade up and take Ivey has already had a significant offer rejected. That’s enough for there to be value there.

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Ousmane Dieng Top 10 +115 / 8th Overall +550

I’m not going to sit here and try and pass off this being leveraged from intel. Ryen Russillo on the Ringer said his understanding was that Dieng had a promise and he wouldn’t get to that promise on Sunday’s Bill Simmons Podcast.

From there, that’s where the intel helps. Dieng has picked up a lot of steam in the past few days. The Pelicans are actively looking to trade up and down, but if they stay at 8th, Dieng is an option. One source believes the Pelicans would rather trade back and take Dieng, but there’s buzz he might go in-between 8th and a trade-back spot, leading to the chance of him going 8th.

The safer bet is plus money Top 10 — 8th overall is if you want a longer shot.

AJ Griffin Under 11.5 +134 and 11th Pick, Johnny Davis Under 11.5 -130

The Knicks, as stated above, are “desperately” (per two sources) trying to move up to No. 4. But if they’re unable to, the two players linked consistently to New York over the past three weeks are Johnny Davis and AJ Griffin.

Davis has interest from the Spurs at 9 and Wizards at 10. His stop gap could very likely be the Knicks at 11. So … you take the Davis under to free roll the Griffin under and Griffin 11th. A likely scenario sees Davis go 9 or 10, Griffin goes 11 and you cash all three.

Oh, one more thing on Griffin: he’s represented by … CAA.

You can also just play it safe and bet Davis under 11.5 with the idea that the Knicks (or a trade partner) could take him at 11. I would not play the Davis under 10.5 that is out there at a shorter number, however.

Trevor Keels +350 to go 1st Round (DraftKings)

Once you get past 20-ish, things get dicey. Teams may trade out, take project swings, select a guy they had as a longshot. It’s not a free roll, but it’s closer to a free roll than a sub-20 pick.

That said, there are three teams between 20 and 30 who have interest in Keels, with a potential stopping point of 32, two picks after this would cash. That’s enough to bet the +350.

Bonus Bets

Jalen Williams +150 to be drafted by Cavaliers (DraftKings): This picked up a ton of steam Wednesday night into Thursday. Essentially the Cavs were shopping moving back but don’t like any of their options and if they stay where they are (14th), the pick is likely to be Jalen Williams. This at a plus-number is still good. If you can find an over 12.5 and under 17.5 you’re good there, too.

Patrick Baldwin Jr. first round +250 (DraftKings): Two teams including Memphis are looking at Baldwin. I wouldn’t go heavy here; late first round picks can get shaken and traded, things change quickly. But Baldwin projects as a first-rounder, if only by a hair.

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Thursday WNBA Picks: Allie Quigley, Nneka Ogwumike, Skylar Diggins-Smith, More Expert PrizePicks Props (June 23)

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Sean Koerner, our Director of Predictive Analytics, highlights his top five WNBA props to target on PrizePicks this Thursday. He has a 47-18 record on picks he’s written about so far this season.

Picks are listed below in order of his confidence, with a 10-rating being the highest. Note that Sean likes to play the following picks as a five-pack, then two- to three-packs based on the props he likes the most, hence why he provides confidence ratings.


What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in more states (30) than sports betting is! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more plays together.


Thursday WNBA Picks

Allie Quigley Over 9.5 Points

The Sparks are the worst defensive team in the league and are particularly vulnerable from beyond the arc as they have allowed 9.5 3PM/G (the most allowed per game). Quigley is the Sky’s 3-point specialist and she should thrive in tonight’s matchup. I’m projecting her closer to 12.5 points.

Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

NaLyssa Smith Over 7.5 Rebounds

The talented rookie is starting to hit her stride and has averaged 11 rebounds over her past five contests. Dallas averages 40.2 missed field goal attempts a game (2nd most in the league), which means Smith should have plenty of rebound chances tonight. I’m projecting her closer to nine rebounds.

Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

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Jordin Canada Under 4.5 Assists

Canada played a season-low 18 minutes last game after she was benched for Brittney Sykes. Canada is also losing playing time to Kristi Toliver, who returned to the lineup a couple of weeks ago. As a result, Canada will see her assist rate drop when playing with the reserves, as I expect her to take more shots. I’m projecting her closer to four assists.

Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

Kelsey Mitchell Under 2.5 3s

The best way to score against the Dallas defense is to attack the rim. Dallas allows the second fewest threes made per game, so I expect Mitchell to drive to the hoop at a higher rate tonight. I’m projecting her closer to two three’s made.

Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

Jewell Loyd Over 1.5 Turnovers

The Mystics generate turnovers at the second-highest rate in the league and Loyd averages 2.3 turnovers a game. I’m projecting her closer to 2.5 turnovers tonight. 

Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

Nneka Ogwumike Under 3.5 Free Throws Made

Ogwumike averages 3.1 FTM/G and the Sky allows the fourth-lowest FTA per game. I would not be shocked if Ogwumike finishes with exactly three free throws made. I love the value here. 

Confidence Rating: 8 out of 10

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Skylar Diggins-Smith Under 2 3s

Diggins-Smith has only made 3+ threes in two games this season while finishing with one or fewer six times. There is a decent chance this prop will push (if she ends with two exactly), but it seems less likely this one loses. I’m projecting her closer to 1.5.

Confidence Rating: 7 out of 10

Allisha Gray Over 13.5 Points

The Wings team’s total for tonight is nearly eight points higher than their season average. Gray should thrive against a Fever defense that struggles to defend similar players. I’m projecting her closer to 16 points.

Confidence Rating: 7 out of 10

Shakira Austin Over 7.5 Points

Elizabeth Williams is out for tonight’s game, so we could see Austin pick up an extra 3-4 minutes of playing time. The Storm are an excellent defensive team, but they can be vulnerable around the rim. The talented rookie should be able to take advantage of both factors tonight and I’m projecting her closer to 9.5 points.

Confidence Rating: 6 out of 10

MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: 2 Best Bets From Thursday Evening’s Slate, Including Orioles vs. White Sox, Phillies vs. Padres (June 23)

mlb odds-picks-predictions-best bets-phillies vs padres-june 23

Thursday’s afternoon MLB slate is loaded, but there are still three intriguing matchups this evening.

While the night is light, our analysts have found value on two of the games, including Orioles vs. White Sox and Phillies vs. Padres.

Here are our two best bets from Thursday evening’s Major League Baseball slate.

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MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Balitmore Orioles vs. Chicago White Sox
8:10 p.m. ET
Philadelphia Phillies vs. San Diego Padres
9:40 p.m. ET

Balitmore Orioles vs. Chicago White Sox

Pick
White Sox Team Total Over 4.5 (-120)
Book
Caesars
Pitchers
Dean Kremer vs. Johnny Cueto
First Pitch
8:10 p.m. ET

DJ James: The Chicago White Sox have one of the hottest offenses in baseball over the last week. They have scored at least five runs in seven of the last nine games, and six of these games took place against the Toronto Blue Jays and the Houston Astros.

In June, they have significantly approved their results (and expected results) off of right-handed pitching. This was one of their main cruxes early in the season, which has led them to be trailing both the Cleveland Guardians and the Minnesota Twins in the American League Central.

However, in June, they have a 110 wRC+ off of righties. Dean Kremer will throw for the Baltimore Orioles, and he has a 3.63 xERA against a 2.35 ERA, so there is room for negative regression. He is about league average in average exit velocity, but considering how the Sox have done lately, they should be able to take advantage of any shortcomings.

Baltimore has also underachieved in the bullpen, so the White Sox should tack on a few late-inning runs, as well. Since the Orioles have three southpaws in relief, Chicago will have the opportunity to exploit a true edge.

Take the team total over for the White Sox from 4.5 (-120) to 5 (-110).

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Philadelphia Phillies vs. San Diego Padres

Pick
Phillies +139
Book
WynnBET
Pitchers
Ranger Suarez vs. Joe Musgrove
First Pitch
9:40 p.m. ET

Tanner McGrath: Joe Musgrove is an astounding pitcher having a career year. He’s a guy who just fills up the strike zone, forces outs and eats up innings. He’s accumulated the fifth-best fWAR of any NL pitcher (2.4), posting a 1.59 ERA over 79 innings in the process.

As a result, Musgrove is a perfect 8-0 while the Padres are 11-1 in his starts this season.

Because of this hot streak, bettors are pouring money on the Padres in Musgrove starts. Padres ML is getting 84% of the tickets at the time of this writing, and the squares are eating.

But there must be a stop point, where Musgrove and Co. are finally overvalued in the market.

I believe this is that point.

The Phillies are a high-upside offense (think Bryce Harper and Nick Castellanos) with a high-upside pitcher in Ranger Suarez. Suarez is struggling this season (4.43 ERA, 4.17 xFIP), but we all remember what he was capable of last season.

Besides, Musgrove’s 3.07 xFIP shows he’s due for some negative regression, and we need to serious devalue the Padres’ lineup with Manny Machado sidelined.

Phillies ML today has lit up four signals on The Action Network App, including Big Money and Sharp Money. It also triggers one of our PRO systems, Contrarian Betting Against Good Teams, which has an 11% ROI over a 1,381-game sample size.

You can still get the Phillies ML at +139 at WynnBET, and I’m looking to play them somewhere in the +135 range.

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Buckets Podcast’s 2022 NBA Draft Betting Preview

Looking to bet the NBA Draft?

The Buckets Podcast, hosted by Action Network Senior NBA Writer Matt Moore and NBA Analyst Brandon Anderson, has been going heavy on draft coverage for the past week. Ahead of Thursday’s Draft, the crew welcomed The Vegas Refund (@Vegasrefund on Twitter) to talk all things NBA Draft.

Top Three Draft Picks

Jabari Smith, Chet Holmgren and Paolo Banchero are the consensus top three in the 2022 NBA Draft, but the No. 1 Pick is still not assured. The guys talk about their expectations.

Top-3 [02:45]

What Will the Kings Do?

The Sacramento Kings moved up to No. 4 in the lottery and have a bevy of options outside of the top group of prospects. Jaden Ivey is seen as the best option, but the Kings are known to be unconventional. The guys discuss the options.

Nos. 4-6 [18:30]

Portland Trail Blazers Moves

The Trail Blazers have been rumored to be looking for trades for the No. 7 pick, but they could still keep their pick. The group discusses how the Blazers’ night could play out.

No. 7 [30:40]

First Round Best Bets

The Buckets crew closes the show with first round sleepers, risers, fallers, and how to read the market and the media frenzy.

More Draft Coverage

PropBetGuy’s MLB Player Prop Pick for Thursday: How to Bet Yankees’ Jameson Taillon (June 23)

propbetguys-mlb-player-prop-pick-for-thursday-how-to-bet-yankees-jameson-taillon-june-23

PropBetGuy will break down some of his favorite MLB plays of the day, and will track all his bets in The Action Network app.


Jameson Taillon Under 17.5 Pitching Outs (-130)

Prop Jameson Taillon Under 17.5 Pitching Outs (-130)
Matchup Astros vs. Yankees
Time 7:05 p.m. ET
Books Available

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The Yankees’ success this season can be attributed to a slew of players taking the proverbial “next step” in their play. Jameson Taillon is easily in that conversation, with a pristine 8-1 record on a 2.70 ERA thus far.

However, when it comes to Taillon, Yankees manager Aaron Boone still proceeds with caution. Out of his 13 starts in 2022, the Yankee righty has stayed under this line nine times. The combination of his injury history with a stout Yankee bullpen has kept Taillon’s pitch count and innings in check.

Tonight he’ll face off against an Astros lineup that is once again one of the best in the big leagues. Against right handers, Houston ranks fifth in OPS (.743), third in ISO (.182), and fifth in wRC+ (116). And specifically, versus Taillon’s two primary pitches, the four-seam fastball and slider, Houston ranks fourth and seventh in wRC, respectively.

There is no love lost between these two teams, who once again sit atop of the AL standings. I expect both teams to manage this four-game set relatively tight, meaning Taillon should be on his typically short leash. I have the Yankee hurler projected at 16 outs tonight.

Pick: Jameson Taillon Under 17.5 Pitching Outs (-130) | Play to (-145)


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UFC Fight Night Odds: Updated Betting Lines for Tsarukyan vs. Gamrot, Magny vs. Rakhmonov

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The UFC returns to its Sin City headquarters for Saturday’s UFC Fight Night event at the APEX facility in Las Vegas. It’s the fourth of 12 straight weekends with a UFC event.

Saturday’s card, UFC on ESPN 38, features 12 bouts in all. The preliminary card airs on ESPN2/ESPN+ (7 p.m. ET) before the main card on ESPN/ESPN+ (10 p.m. ET).

In the main event, 25-year-old Armenian-Russian prospect Arman Tsarukyan (18-2), the UFC’s No. 11-ranked lightweight contender, meets Mateusz Gamrot (20-1), a 31-year-old Polish fighter who’s ranked No. 12. And in the co-main event, No. 15-ranked welterweight contender Shavkat Rakhmonov (15-0) meets perennial contender Neil Magny (26-8), who’s ranked No. 10.

You can check out the full list of UFC on ESPN 38 odds via Caesars for all of the bouts on Saturday’s lineup below.

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UFC Fight Night Odds

Preliminary Card

  • 7 p.m. ET
  • ESPN2 / ESPN+

Vanessa Demopoulos vs. Jinh Yu Frey

Women’s Strawwwight Bout Odds
Vanessa Demopoulos Odds +190
Jinh Yu Frey Odds -230
Over/under rounds n/a

Brian Kelleher vs. Mario Bautista

Bantamweight Bout Odds
Brian Kelleher Odds +145
Mario Bautista Odds -170
Over/under rounds 2.5 (-135 / +105)

JP Buys vs. Cody Durden

Flyweight Bout Odds
JP Buys Odds -115
Cody Durden Odds -105
Over/under rounds 2.5 (-150 / +125)
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Raulian Paiva vs. Sergey Morozov

Bantamweight Bout Odds
Raulian Paiva Odds +125
Sergey Morozov Odds -150
Over/under rounds 2.5 (-175 / +135)

Shayilan Nuerdanbieke vs. TJ Brown

Featherweight Bout Odds
Shayilan Nuerdanbieke Odds +175
TJ Brown Odds -210
Over/under rounds 2.5 (-220 / +170)

Carlos Ulberg vs. Tafon Nchukwi

Light Heavyweight Bout Odds
Carlos Ulberg Odds +105
Tafon Nchukwi Odds -125
Over/under rounds 1.5 (-175 / +135)

Main Card

  • 10 p.m. ET
  • ESPN / ESPN+

Chris Curtis vs. Rodolfo Vieira

Middleweight Bout Odds
Chris Curtis Odds -130
Rodolfo Vieira Odds +110
Over/under rounds 1.5 (+120/ -150)

Nate Maness vs. Umar Nurmagomedov

Bantamweight Bout Odds
Nate Maness Odds +600
Umar Nurmagomedov Odds -900
Over/under rounds 1.5 (-165 / +127)
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Thiago Moises vs. Christos Giagos

Lightweight Bout Odds
Thiago Moises Odds -240
Christos Giagos Odds +200
Over/under rounds 2.5 (-130 / +100)

Josh Parisian vs. Alan Baudot

Heavyweight Bout Odds
Josh Parisian Odds -105
Alan Baudot Odds -115
Over/under rounds 1.5 (-185 / +145)

Neil Magny vs. Shavkat Rakhmonov

Welterweight Bout Odds
Neil Magny Odds +320
Shavkat Rakhmonov Odds -410
Over/under rounds 2.5 (+110/ -140)

Arman Tsarukyan vs. Mateusz Gamrot

Lightweight Bout Odds
Arman Tsarukyan Odds -300
Mateusz Gamrot Odds +240
Over/under rounds 4.5 (-115 / -115)

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Arch Manning Commits to Texas: Social Media Reacts to Top Quarterback Prospect’s Decision

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Arch Manning, considered the top prospect in the 2023 college football recruiting class, announced his commitment to Texas on Thursday, sending social media into a frenzy with reactions.

Manning, the son of Cooper Manning and nephew of Peyton and Eli, chose the Longhorns over Alabama and Georgia in the end. Manning is entering his senior year at Isidore Newman School in New Orleans, Louisiana.

It’s a huge get for head coach Steve Sarkisian, who is entering his second season at Texas.


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Does this mean Texas is “Back?” Not yet, according to oddsmakers. The Longhorns are +5000 at Caesars to win the national championship this season, which of course won’t involve Manning. When he does arrive on campus, he’ll find a quarterback room with another former No. 1-ranked QB in Quinn Ewers.

Maalik Murphy is also expected to be on the roster this fall. Murphy was a 4-star quarterback prospect in the Class of 2022 out of California.

But we aren’t here to discuss Manning’s impact on the future of Texas football or what the Longhorns will look like this year. We’re just here to see how social media reacted to the big news of the day in the sport.

Recruiting Reactions 

Is this just the start for Texas in 2023?

Manning joins an exclusive list.

Will he stick with Texas?

NIL Tweets, Of Course

Who better than our Darren Rovell to start off the Name, Image & Likeness portion of tweets?

Finally, is Texas Back?

…No, No They Are Not

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2022 NBA Draft Odds: 3 Most Popular Prop Picks, Which Involve AJ Griffin, Johnny Davis, Ousmane Dieng & Shaedon Sharpe

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This NBA Draft has seen one of the weirdest line movements in history for its biggest draft prop. Jabari Smith moved from a -600 favorite to a +150 underdog to a -1000 favorite again all in the span of about 12 hours.

That -1000 line got as short as +115 (!) at around 1 p.m. ET at PointsBet. Then, the line moved curiously back to -150.

(Keep up-to-date with the most recent odds via this tracker below.)

While the No. 1 overall pick is the consensus most popular NBA draft prop across all major American sportsbooks, the Action Network asked representatives at PointsBet to provide their three most popular bets outside of that particular one.

A matchup bet between former Duke guard A.J. Griffin and former Wisconsin guard Johnny Davis is the next-most popular bet at the sportsbook.

The money there is on Griffin to be selected before Davis at plus-money. That pick went off the board at PointsBet earlier this afternoon but had been priced at roughly +150.

DraftKings still has the matchup listed at Griffin +160 over Davis.

Popular mock drafts vary on which will be selected first. ESPN’s Jonathan Givony has Davis going No. 10 to the Washington Wizards and Griffin going No. 12 to the Thunder.

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Sports Illustrated’s Jeremy Woo lists Griffin as the favorite to go higher, with the former Blue Devil slotted at No. 11 and Davis at No. 13.

The Athletic’s Sam Vecenie lists Davis at No. 10 and Griffin at No. 11.

The second-most popular prop is on lengthy French international prospect Ousmane Dieng to go in the top 10. His stock has been steadily rising over the last several days and is mocked as high as No. 8 by reputable prognosticators.

His odds to go top 10 are +110 at PointsBet.

The third-most popular prop is for Shaedon Sharpe to be the seventh pick or better tonight.

All three of the aforementioned mock drafts have Sharpe listed after the seventh pick, but each had Sharpe up there at some point this month.

Sharpe’s odds to be a top seven pick are +175 at PointsBet.

PointsBet Holds Firm in 2022 NBA Draft Odds As Swings Between Jabari Smith & Paolo Banchero Continue

2022-nba-draft-poses-huge-challenge-for-oddsmakers

After a long night, PointsBet trader Sam Garriock didn’t need coffee to get him up this morning.

At 6:41 a.m. his time, ESPN insider Adrian Wojnarowski fired off a tweet.

Garriock alerted his staff and told them to take down first pick odds.

At 10:45 p.m. ET Wednesday night, Paolo Banchero was +425 to be the first pick. But three hours later, the Duke star was -140. He was as short as -230 before the Woj tweet and came back up to +300.

“Drafts are the hardest thing we do as far as trading goes,” said Garriock, who works out of PointsBet’s headquarters in Denver. “It’s a complex thing to set the odds to, and then, as long as you’re willing to take bets live during the draft, every pick and every trade affects the algorithm.”

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With games, sportsbooks have comfort in their systems, with each game adding to the pile of data. Each draft is different, though the principles are the same.

“We have an overall big board, we look at mock drafts and then we take into account overall team needs,” Garriock said. “And then things constantly change during the draft. If Charlotte doesn’t take Jalen Duren at No. 13, he’s not going No. 14 because they already have Allen and Mobley at center.”

While Garriock says his traders have conviction and do their own work, he also admits to look around more than he does for games in the draft, partly because a big bet at a sportsbook could be a signal that something is in the works.

FanDuel shot its odds on Smith all the way up to -10000 at one point before moving it down to -6000 and then -3000. Meanwhile, PointsBet held firm at -476. As FanDuel moved again to -1100, PointsBet remained the shortest option. It’s next move on Smith was to shorten him again to -325.

As for what will be offered live, Woj also becomes a factor there.

“He’s tweeting picks that are sometimes two picks ahead of the TV,” Garriock said. “So if the TV is on Pick 5, he could be on Pick 7, so, to be safe and not get caught, we will be offering odds on Pick 9 at that time.”

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Updated NBA Draft Top Pick Odds: Banchero Sudden Favorite to be Taken First

nba-draft-number-1-pick-odds-jabari-smith-paolo-banchero-chet-holmgren-2022

There may finally be a runaway candidate for the top pick in Thursday night’s NBA Draft — and it appears to be the player many predicted this whole time.

For much of the buildup, Auburn forward Jabari Smith has been the consensus betting favorite and No. 1 pick in mock drafts across the board. But recent steam on Duke forward Paolo Banchero put Smith’s status as the top choice in doubt.

Early in the process, Smith was around even money before settling around -200. That flipped early Thursday morning when Banchero became the -200 favorite with Smith dropping to +145.

All it took was a Thursday morning tweet from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski to change everything … again.

Still, the market continues to move.

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Smith was -10000 (bet $1000, profit $100) to be the first pick in the NBA Draft. That slid to -6000, then -2100, then -1600.

Meanwhile, PointsBet posted -476 on Smith.

Here are the latest, ever-changing odds to be the No. 1 pick.

Updated NBA Draft Top Pick Odds

*Odds updated as of Thursday at 7:50 p.m. ET and via FanDuel

Player Odds
Paolo Banchero -260
Jabari Smith +170
Chet Holmgren +2300

7:50 p.m. ET: Draft odds have taken another wild turn as Banchero is the new favorite to go No. 1 following a Wojnarowski Tweet.

At FanDuel, he’s a -260 favorite, at DraftKings Banchero is -200 and the wager isn’t even on the board at PointsBet.

You can find the Tweet below.


7:30 p.m. ET: We’re a half hour away from draft time and it appears oddsmakers believe they know who will go first.

Smith is a consensus -550 or shorter favorite at most major sportsbooks, with Banchero anywhere from +300 to +500.

Holmgren appears to be an afterthought at this point, with his odds at +1600 or longer.


6:35 p.m. ET: It appears we have some separation in the odds.

We’ve seen odds move in funky ways all day, but Smith is pulling away by the minute.

He’s -650 at FanDuel to be the first player taken in the draft, and at DraftKings he’s up to -750.


5:47 p.m. ET: As we’ve gotten deeper into the day, Smith is establishing a stronger grip on the market once again.

He’s -300 or shorter at FanDuel, PointsBet and DraftKings to be the first player taken in the draft.


4:30 p.m. ET: Odds have remained steady as we’re now 3.5 hours away from draft time.

At FanDuel, you can get Smith as the first pick of the draft at -280. Banchero is +200 while Holmgren is +2300.


3:24 p.m. ET: Once again, we’re reaching a bit of a stable position with the odds.

Smith is between -260 and -350 at FanDuel, PointsBet and DraftKings, and Banchero is between +190 and +200 at each. Holmgren checks in between +1600 and +2200.

We’ll see if that holds.


2:41 p.m. ET: Odds movement has tapered down slightly, at least for the time being.

Smith’s odds to go first overall are -260 at FanDuel, -350 at DraftKings and -210 at PointsBet.

Banchero is listed at +195, +200 and +150 at the respective books.


2:11 p.m. ET: We’re now at a point where books are offering significantly different odds.

You can find Smith at -191 to be the first player off the board at PointsBet, but at DraftKings he remains at -400. FanDuel has split the difference with a -260 number.


1:41 p.m. ET: Perhaps we’ve reached a consensus?

Smith is now a -480 favorite at FanDuel to be the first pick. He’s a -500 favorite at DraftKings and a -325 favorite at PointsBet.


1:17 p.m. ET: The ever-changing odds on the top pick continued to see wild shifts as Smith fell to even money before jumping all the way back up to -390.

Banchero was briefly at +100, but he’s swiftly been moved back to +240.


12:48 p.m. ET: Here we go!

Smith’s odds to be the top overall pick in tonight’s NBA Draft continue to shorten.

After sitting at -351 late on Thursday morning, Smith is now -175 to be the No. 1 pick, with Banchero sitting at +110.


11:30 a.m. ET: DraftKings has pulled all markets for the top three picks following Wojnarowski’s tweet shown above.

PointsBet finally made a move on Smith, shortening him even more to -351.

FanDuel has continued to creep down in the last hour.

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Jabari Smith, Paolo Banchero NBA Draft Top Pick Betting Liabilities Differ Among Sportsbooks

nba-draft-odds-jabari-smith-paolo-banchero-liabilities-differ-among-sportsbooks

What a whirlwind 12 hours.

Jabari Smith Jr. had been as long as -600 to go No. 1 overall in the NBA Draft heading into Thursday morning. Then right after midnight struck, his odds started to belly up.

Betting action pushed Paolo Banchero’s No. 1 pick odds from +300 to -200 when the dust settled just a few hours later.

By 8 a.m. ET Thursday, Banchero was the odds-on favorite at most sportsbooks, and perhaps for good reason.

By 8:41 a.m. ET, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the top three picks in the NBA Draft were settling in.

Swiftly, every book took down its odds. Many still haven’t reposted their No. 1 to No. 3 markets, including BetMGM. The ones that have slot Smith as long as -400 to go first overall, although even that’s ever changing.

(Keep up-to-date with the most recent odds here.)

Bad news for some sportsbooks: Smith to go No. 1 had been by far their biggest liability.

Great news for others: Banchero had been their biggest liability.

NBA Draft Betting Liabilities

At BetMGM, Smith has 70.7% of the total money while Holmgren is actually second with 15.7% of the loot.

Banchero comes in third with 12% of the handle.

Meanwhile, at PointsBet the Thursday morning steam got the better of their pricing. Banchero became their biggest liability in the process, a PointsBet representative told Action Network.

That’s despite the fact that Smith as the biggest handle at 74%. Banchero is in second at 16%, but many of those tickets have +300 to +1600 value.

So, had the Banchero late night steam been accurate, sportsbooks like BetMGM would make out like bandits.

Others like PointsBet would’ve had bad days at the office.

As it stands, it appears it was all a smokescreen, but who knows with this draft?

Smith’s odds rocketed to -6000 at DraftKings following Woj’s tweet, but they’ve steadily declined since.

DraftKings now prices Smith at -380.

FanDuel, meanwhile, is operating at a -260 clip. That’s down from -10000 just a few hours ago.

Still, Smith’s odds to go No. 1 were a consensus +150 at around 8 a.m. today. That implies odds of roughly 40%.

His current odds of about -300 imply a 75% chance that he’ll go No. 1.

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NASCAR Odds, Pick & Prediction: Best Featured Matchup Bet for Sunday’s Ally 400

nascar-odds-pick-betting-nashville-driver-matchup-ally-400-sunday-june-26-2022

There are a lot of unknowns heading into Sunday’s Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway.

For example, how will the Next Gen car perform on a 1.333-mile concrete racetrack?

In addition, how will the new underbody scanner affect how teams are setting up their cars and finding speed?

On the flip-side, there is a 50-minute practice session for the NASCAR Cup Series on Saturday evening, so we should have a decent amount of data to analyze to help solve those questions above.

With this in mind, I’m taking a very conservative betting approach until cars hit the track this weekend.

Though, because there is so much uncertainty, locking in a plus-money featured matchup isn’t a terrible strategy either.

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NASCAR Pick for Nashville

*Odds as of Thursday morning

While Ross Chastain should be favored over Trackhouse Racing teammate Daniel Suarez, the -175 price is simply too large.

Chastain has carried the banner for Trackhouse for most of the season, but Suarez finally parlayed a fast car to a victory at Sonoma two weeks ago.

Considering they’re teammates, they should have similar pace in their cars again on Sunday at Nashville, which, as I mentioned above, sports a concrete surface.

Dover, another concrete track, is arguably Suarez’s best racetrack, so there is a path for the Cup Series’ most recent winner to get up to speed quickly this weekend and potentially be even faster than his teammate.

Again, we don’t have a lot of data to lean on and won’t until Saturday’s practice session, but that’s also why +140 via BetMGM is a very bet-able number in the featured matchup.

The bet: Suarez +140 over Chastain

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MLB Odds, Prediction: Smart Money Pick for Brewers vs. Cardinals (Thursday, June 23)

brewers-cardinals-prediction-mlb-odds-thursday-june-23-smart-money-pick

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers Odds

Cardinals Odds -102
Brewers Odds -116
Over/Under 9.5 (o -105/ u -115)
Date Thursday, June 23
Time 2:10 p.m. ET
Channel MLB Network

*Odds via FanDuel as of Thursday morning

The Action Network’s proprietary tracking data indicates solid value on one side of the moneyline for this 2 p.m. Thursday matinee between the Brewers and Cardinals.

The line has already moved substantially in this team’s favor on account of sharp and big money action.

One of our most prominent MLB handicappers is riding with this pick alongside the rest of the sharps.

This pick fades retail bettors, whose prevailing notions can often be misguided.

Read further to see which line our algorithms are targeting on Thursday afternoon.

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MLB Algorithm Predictions for Thursday

Odds and betting data last updated at 10 a.m. ET.

The models are rolling with the Brewers this afternoon for this nationally televised affair.

Sharp and big moneyed bettors are tailing this pick in high order. While 58% of the money is on this line, only 36% of the individual bets are.

So, a small minority of the betting market for this game is betting massive amounts of money on the Brewers to win.

It’s been enough to move the Brewers from their opening line of +100 to a market consensus of roughly -115.

Over the long run, tailing smart money action exclusively will pay dividends. Of course, in the short term, variance is a constraint.

PRO Picks: Brewers -115 or better

How 3 Gamblers Struck Gold by Landing LeBron James Logoman Trading Card & What the Payout Might Be

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On Friday, May 6, Jason Hickey is in New York, Kevin Parker is in Utah and Zach Capp is sitting in Las Vegas. They didn’t know each other in the slightest, but moments later become connected forever thanks to the most sought-after card pulled out of a pack.

It was then that they became the owners of the elusive LeBron James Logoman. Soon, they’ll share millions after investing just over $1,000 each.

This is the story of their night, their future and the card that has the whole hobby talking.

***

As high-end trading cards made a huge comeback during the COVID Era, one of the cottage industries that emerged were breakers. Breakers secure high-end boxes and sell spots off. Those spots are slot numbers in a card pack –either randomly or by auctioning off teams.

Depending on the year, teams with the most coveted stars would go for the most money. The margins were huge, but for those buying a spot, it was a mitigated gamble. If they didn’t hit, they weren’t out tens of thousands of dollars from a box.

“It costs so much to buy a certain box or case, it’s a really bad game,” Parker said. “So instead of buying the box, the break makes it more affordable and sometimes you can pick your teams.”

With competition high, breakers, who stream the opening live and then send the buyer their cards, knew that future business was linked to two things — attention they could gain from social media when they hit the big score and entertainment value.

One of the big winners in breaking has been Backyard Breaks, which managed to be the most followed account on the popular new streaming selling platform WhatNot. Thanks to being entertaining and awarding their big winners with the Golden Ticket — which enables them a trip to see the Backyard Breakers, eat dinner and break with them — they’ve emerged as one of the best in-class with personalities like JMo, Nicky Sleeves and Nicky Ripz.

Frequent followers and buyers of their breaks are Hickey (jhic), Parker (Kopp99) and Capp (Kingmitz).

***

The biggest chase card in the business was already known — the Panini Flawless LeBron Logoman card, which featured NBA logo patches from game-used uniforms that LeBron wore for each of his teams: the Cavs Heat and Lakers.

For four months, no one had hit it. Breakers, sites and even Drake, who probably bought more boxes than any single person, were all getting antsy.

To motivate breakers to get it on their platform, WhatNot announced “Flawless Week.” If the LeBron Logoman was hit on their platform, they would give the breaker a $330,000 Lamborghini Huracan.

Backyard Breakers bought five cases, with two boxes per case, for $200,000.

The break that night included football and basketball with buyers, essentially getting cities. In some cases, buyers can pay a premium for specific teams in hopes of cashing in on the big names.

On this night, the teams were randomly selected with bidding taking place before each draw. Bidders know which teams are available, but they don’t know which will get drawn on their bid.

Capp, a filmmaker whose penchant for gambling and love of cards got him interested in breaks, landed Miami early with a $1,400 bid. That earned him any Dolphins and Heat players.

With four teams left, Cleveland and Los Angeles were among them. Knowing there was a chance to land something from the Rams, Lakers, Browns or Cavaliers, Parker bid up for $1,800 and sure enough pulled Los Angeles.

Hickey bid $1,400 for the next reveal, which happened to be Cleveland to pick up any Cavs and Browns. He later bid another $1,800 in hopes of hitting Memphis, thus having a chance to pull a Ja Morant.

None of the men have been particularly blessed with luck in their lives.

Parker still remembers the magic of pulling a 1986 Jose Canseco Donruss Rated Rookie as a kid and Hickey won a Nintendo console at school in the sixth grade.

“It’s the only thing I ever really won,” said Hickey, who found out 10 years later that the school rigged it, hoping to boost him up after his father had recently passed away.

The Panini Logoman is the modern day grail. A 1/1 Luka Doncic signed Logoman from the 2018-19 Panini National Treasures set sold in Feb. 2021 for $4.6 million, the record for a modern card. For the 2020-21 collection, Panini created five triple Logoman cards, including the LeBron James card. Although unsigned — James has an exclusive with Upper Deck — many had speculated that the card would top the Doncic and maybe even the Honus Wagner to become the most valuable card of all time.

Each Flawless box has 10 cards, an inner pack of eight and two encased on the outside. It is believed in the hobby that the worse the inner pack is, the better the two cards on the outside will be.

“This pack is such shit,” the breaker they call JMo recalled saying. “This is going to be the LeBron logo man or something massive.”

JMo saw the indicators — it was horizontal like the logoman is — and a Heat logo.

“And move it down and there it is!” JMo said.

As JMo screamed, the three men stared at their phones in shock.

Because they each had a team in the logoman, they split rights to the card in thirds.

Parker and Hickey are dropping F-bombs, while Capp is sitting there frozen.

“We became the Logoman brothers,” Capp said.

After the card was rushed to a safe location, the three quickly got together in person with the Backyard Breakers and worked on their future.

“The lawyers were the worst part, but we didn’t get into any fights,” Kevin said. “The love of the hobby immediately bonded us.”

After agreeing they would sell it, they made a deal with Goldin Auctions. While terms of the deal are confidential, Ken Goldin told the Action Network that the deal given was a deal that is commensurate with any card that would sell more than $1 million.

With two days to go in the auction, the top bid, with buyer’s premium, is $2.16 million. Assuming it closes on Saturday, and a sweetheart deal with Goldin, each “Logoman Brother” will make more than $650,000 each.

Hickey will put some money into 529 education plans for his two children, while the others plan on making some investments and donating some money to worthy causes to pay their luck forward.

As for the Backyard Breakers, they’re going to take the cash for the Lamborghini and hitting the LeBron logoman has boosted their business and viewership significantly.

Goldin says he finds it comical how many in the hobby are now bashing the card, including calling attention to the fact that it was graded “authentic” because the condition wasn’t good enough to give it a 10.

“There’s a lot of negativity in this hobby and a lot of jealousy from the people that didn’t pull it,” Golden said. “The fact is that there has never been a more valuable card that has come directly out of a pack in the year that it was offered.”

WNBA Odds, Picks, Predictions: 4 Bets From Thursday’s Slate, Including Mystics vs. Storm (June 23)

wnba odds-picks-predictions-mystics vs storm-june 23

There’s nothing I love more than accountability, especially when it comes to sports betting. I think it’s essential to know how the person you’re reading is doing on the whole before diving into the advice.

So with that in mind, I’m going to keep a few different tallies at the start of these articles so you know what you’re getting into, and I may use an introduction here and there to dive into some trends from these articles: Are we missing on unders, hitting on spreads, etc.

This is just my fifth article for Action, and how I am defining units for these articles is one unit to a “play” and a half unit to a “lean”. So far, the articles have produced a 2.1 percent return, as 10 of the 19 plays have landed.

However, that’s a very small sample of course. Overall, on the season, with picks on Twitter and picks on here, I have a 16.0 percent return, with 29 of 48 bets landing.

And just so you know that I’m not cherry-picking, I’m also going to include my bets on the app here, which because of misplaying a few best bets is negative so far, at -17.0 percent return with just 11 of 26 bets landing.

I am glad that the largest sample is also the best return so far, but I am going to be tracking these all year so that you can see them before we begin–I won’t dive into as much depth each time, but will just include them right before the main article.

I would recommend that everyone track their bets and look to see where they are doing best and worst. In my case, it has led me to target the quarters bets less often because those have been a struggle, while moneyline and spread bets have been far more profitable. Hopefully we have even more player bets and even same game parlays available some day, but for now, it’s good to know what are the best markets to attack with the options we have available.

Let’s get on to today’s action.

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WNBA Odds, Picks

Click on game to skip ahead

Matchup Time
Fever vs. Wings 8 p.m. ET
Mercury vs. Lynx 8 p.m. ET
Mystics vs. Storm 10 p.m. ET
Sky vs. Sparks 10:30 p.m. ET


Fever vs. Wings

Fever Odds +8.5
Wings Odds -8.5
Moneyline +320 / -417
Over/Under 168.5
Time 8 p.m. ET
Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.

Injuries/News

The only player out for either team is Satou Sabally who has already been ruled out for her fifth straight game.

Go Big or Go Home

We’re going for a little double entendre with today’s header. The first reading of “go big or go home” is about how the Fever will be looking to score on the Wings.

No team in the W takes a higher percentage of their shots from 0-3 feet than the Fever, who take nearly 30 percent of their shot from up close. That’s driven in part by a big-heavy offense, but also by wings and guards who prefer to do their work near the rim, like Emily Engstler and Tiffany Mitchell.

The good news for the Fever is that Dallas struggles to protect the rim.  Their 75.6 percent field goal percentage allowed in that 0-3 foot range is by far the worst in the W.

Coincidentally, despite such a high percentage of their shots coming from 0-3 feet, Indiana also struggles far more than any team in terms of actually getting in the basket when they’re there, coming in at just 54.4 percent, due in large part to those wings and guards who go in amongst the trees and can’t quite finish.

As such, here’s where the second part of “go big or go home” comes in. The Fever are 3-6 in their last nine games. In their six losses, not a single one has been by fewer than this 8.5-point line we have right here. On the other hand, they have those three wins, including an impressive W over the Sky last time out. So I’m going to offer two plays here and hope this game doesn’t thread the needle.

The two game scripts I see value in are the Wings’ interior defense not mattering that much because Indiana’s wings and guards just can’t finish near the basket and that 8.5-point spread isn’t an issue. BUT the other possible script I see is Indiana being able to score on the interior after all and clawing out the road victory.

So I’m going to suggest you go one of two routes. The clean Dallas -8.5, or make a pair of smaller bets: Indiana moneyline and over 168.5. I’m going to go with the second route here for my pick, and the former for my lean, and you can choose your own adventure with how you play it.

Pick:  Half a unit on the Fever moneyline +320; half a unit on over 168.5
Lean: Dallas -8.5

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Mercury vs. Lynx

Mercury Odds -1.5
Lynx Odds +1.5
Moneyline -120 / +100
Over/Under 165.5
Time 8 p.m. ET
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.

Injuries/News

As has been the case all season, the Phoenix injury/news section has to lead off with Brittney Griner who has been wrongly detained in Russia for more than 100 days.

Sophie Cunningham also remains out after injuring her elbow on June 5, and Kia Nurse has yet to make her 2022 debut.

For the Lynx, they are almost back to full health. Napheesa Collier remains away from the team during maternity leave, but the only other name on the injury list is Sylvia Fowles, who is the reason this line was posted so late because she may return to the lineup tonight after missing the last five games.

Rematch

These two teams played just two days ago in Phoenix, with the Lynx winning handily, 84-71. These “double-headers” or “home and homes” are common in the WNBA, but there doesn’t seem to be much an overarching trend to take away from them.

When the two played on Tuesday, I was on the Phoenix side, with the logic being that the Lynx are the worst team in the W at defending the three, and the Mercury have leaned fully into the “chuck as many threes as possible” stage of life.

Instead, the Mercury took fewer threes than their season’s average, and it was the Lynx who outpaced their season’s average on three-point percentage, making them at a 40 percent clip — more than eight points above their season average.

The Lynx have actually been playing very respectable basketball over the past few weeks, with three losses before the Mercury win, but none coming by more than four, and two coming against the Aces and Storm — two of the better teams in the league.

This is where we need to address our priors. Coming into the season, the Lynx were not thought of as one of the worst teams in the league, instead they were projected right around the bottom half of the playoff bracket. It’s starting to look like, despite that shaky start and all the roster change over, that’s around where this team is — not a bottom feeder, but a decent low-end side.

However, Vegas has read that well, and this line gives some respect to Minnesota, making the game right around a pick’em. So instead, I’m going to look to the total, and I’m eyeing the under. I like to eye unders when a star player like a Fowles returns, as there is often rust on the offensive side. The matchup Tuesday also easily went under on this total, and I don’t see Minnesota shooting 40 percent from three again.

Lean: Under 165.5 

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Mystics vs. Storm

Mystics Odds +4.5
Storm Odds -4.5
Moneyline +115 / -135
Over/Under 152
Time 10 p.m. ET
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.

Injuries/News

For the Storm, Mercedes Russell remains out, but everyone else should be in the lineup, barring any last-second scratches.

For the Mystics, Elizabeth Williams is going to miss the game to be at the NBA Draft with her brother, Mark. However, they should have Elena Delle Donne who flew out to Seattle early, so it’s hard to imagine her then missing this game.

Mirror Images

You never want to put too much stock into a regular season game in June, but I will definitely be watching this game with extra attention, as these two teams seem like near mirror images of each right now. Neither are in that top tier that they have been in the past, but they both have players who are in the running for best player in the world when healthy.

They are both hovering around that 4/5 seed, and it would almost be surprising if this wasn’t a first-round matchup at this point with the new set-up incoming later this summer.

The Storm currently sit higher in the actual rankings, but I think the Mystics have the higher ceiling overall. If you look at Pythagorean record, the Mystics are actually 2.5 games ahead of the Storm, with both teams having played a similarly difficult schedule. The Mystics have also had to deal with their best player having missed almost half their games.

This line opened at Seattle -2.5, which implies Vegas sees the two as near equals as well, but after moving down to -2, it suddenly jumped to -4.5 early Thursday morning, which leaves one wondering if Delle Donne is actually out (nothing has been reported as of this writing).

Both teams have impressive defensive stalwarts they can put on the other team’s best player, and there aren’t going to be any free baskets given away by these two veteran teams who both rank in the bottom three in terms of turnovers per game.

With all that said, I’m going to grab the points in what should be an excellent matchup,. But keep an eye on injury news with the line moving.

Pick: Washington +4.5

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Sky vs. Sparks

Sky Odds -6
Sparks Odds +6
Moneyline -260 / +210
Over/Under 171.5
Time 10:30 p.m. ET
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.

Injuries/News

The Sky don’t have anyone listed on the health report as of now, but I would tread cautiously on assuming Candace Parker will play. The Sky have been clear that they are not going to push Parker’s knee, and with Chicago having played an intense game just two days ago, she could be a late scratch.

For the Sparks, the big name that will be out is Chiney Ogwumike who has already been ruled out for personal reasons. Rae Burrell is still out for the foreseeable future with a knee injury

Do You Believe in Letdown Spots?

This has trap game written all over it. The Sky are fresh off an awesome win in which they came back from down 28 points on Tuesday to complete the biggest comeback in WNBA history, doing so against a team that many think is the best team in the league (despite Chicago still wearing the defending champs crown).

On the other side of the court, the Sparks just picked up their first win under new head coach Fred Williams on Tuesday, a two-point win over an EDD-less Mystics side. Everything about this game seems tricky, from the perfectly set six-point line to the just-high-enough 170 total to the fact that Parker might be a late scratch.

If you’re a believer in letdown spots, I do think that’s the one play I could potentially see, with a Sparks home cover, but I don’t like it enough to give as a recommended play.

Pick: Stay away


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MLB NRFI Odds, Picks, Predictions: Expect Justin Steele, Jose Quintana to Shut Down Scoring Early in Cubs vs. Pirates (Thursday, June 23)

mlb nrfi-thursday june 23-cubs vs pirates-justin steele

Shayne Trail breaks down his favorite NRFI/YRFI bet of the day below, but you can follow all of his bets in the Action Network app.


Cubs vs. Pirates — No Runs First Inning (-108)

Matchup Cardinals (Wainwright) vs. Brewers (Lauer)
First Pitch 12:35 p.m. ET
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On Thursday, we head to PNC Park to play a NRFI between two National League teams.

Justin Steele’s NRFI success since entering the league is remarkable. 12-1 in 2022 now makes him 20-2 since 2021. When facing hitters the first time through the order, Steele is holding hitters to a .209 average.

Here is how Steele has fared against these Pirates batters:

  • Ke’Bryan Hayes: 1-for-1
  • Bryan Reynolds: 1-for-4
  • Michael Chavis: 1-for-5
  • Diego Castillo: 0-for-2

The Pirates, to no surprise, are an inefficient first-inning hitting team. They are hitting the NRFI as a team 75% of the time, going 27-9 to the NRFI when playing at home. It should be noted their leadoff hitter Hayes is also slumping, in his last seven days, hitting just .190.

On the other side, we have the second coming of Jose Quintana. With an 11-2 2022 NRFI record, this now brings him to 18-4 since 2021. In 47 first-inning batters, Quintana is holding hitters to an impressive .136 average along with only allowing two walks thus far.

Here are some past notable matchups for Quintana:

  • Willson Contreras: 0-for-3
  • Patrick Wisdom: 0-for-2
  • Ian Happ: 1-for-2

Also note that Yan Gomes, who is projected to bat fourth today, is 3-for-21 against Quintana.

The Cubs are a well-known proficient first-inning hitting team, but they haven’t achieved a YRFI in their last three games, and regression has set in for an overachieving team.

Take these two 10-plus win NRFI pitchers to have a collective three up three down first inning. Take the NRFI between the Cubs and the Pirates.

For all of Shayne Trail’s favorite NRFI/YRFI bets, follow him in the Action Network app.

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Cardinals vs. Brewers Odds, Pick, Prediction: St. Louis Eyes Key Series Win (June 23)

mlb-odds-betting-picks-predictions-st louis cardinals-vs-milwaukee brewers-dakota hudson-jason alexander-thursday-june 23-2022

Cardinals vs. Brewers Odds

Cardinals Odds -105
Brewers Odds -115
Over/Under 9.5 (-105 / -115)
Time 2:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The St. Louis Cardinals took control of this four-game set with a 5-4 victory on Wednesday night. Propelled by a big performance from Nolan Arenado, St. Louis heads into Thursday’s game with looking to close out this critical NL Central series.

To do that, the Cardinals will hand the ball to Dakota Hudson. The sinkerballer enters Thursday’s starting appearance with a 5-3 record and 3.31 ERA. Hudson has had a tremendous year despite all of his underlying numbers being on the wrong end of the spectrum.

Another sinkerballer, Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Jason Alexander, will oppose Hudson. Alexander has compiled a 2.42 ERA in four career starts, but the stout Cardinals offense will be his most formidable opponent yet.

Will we finally witness either of these sinkerballers regress, or will they match each other groundball-for-groundball? Let’s take a closer look and find out.

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Expect Soft Contact from the Cardinals

I have broken down a few of Dakota Hudson’s starts this season and  have constantly faded him, because he has given up too much hard contact to sustain success.

Well, Hudson has proven me and the Statcast data wrong. The same goes for Jason Alexander.

Alexander’s underlying metrics look just as bad, with an Expected Batting Average (xBA) in the bottom 1% and Expected ERA (xERA) in the bottom 12% of all qualified pitchers. However, none of that matters, because those metrics are counteracted by his top-10% barrel rate.

What does this all mean for these sinkerballers? Put simply: It doesn’t even matter how hard the ball is hit; if it’s on the ground, it is more likely to find a glove.

Since being called up by the Brewers, Alexander has done a tremendous job of churning up groundballs and boasts an elite 56% groundball rate.

Meanwhile, St. Louis is not typically a team that hits the ball on the ground at a high frequency. The Cardinals rank 24th in team groundball rate, but their metrics don’t imply that they will be able to lift the ball all that often.

Only Paul Goldschmidt has an above-average exit velocity and hard-hit rate. The rest of the lineup — including Nolan Arenado, Tommy Edman and Brendan Donavan — has not made consistent solid contact this season.

So, it should be no surprise to see many of the Cardinals’ at-bats result in groundouts.

Another Tightrope Act From Hudson?

These sinkerballers specialize in defying Statcast data, and there is no better exemplar than Dakota Hudson. The Cardinals pitcher enters this start with nearly every underlying statistic in a shade of blue. However, like Alexander, he’s in the top 20% in barrel rate.

During his only other full season in 2019, Hudson produced similar expected metrics, including a 5.09 xERA versus an actual ERA of 3.35. That trend has persisted throughout the current season, in which Hudson reports a 3.31 ERA that data tells us should be closer to 4.48.

There are a few other concerns for Hudson — for instance, his walk rate ranks among the bottom 20% of MLB — but the groundball has been his savior. Hudson’s groundball rate is nearly 58%. Those groundballs have enabled him to generate multiple clean innings and work out of tight jams when his command fails him.

Also like Alexander, he will be facing a club that has put the ball on the ground quite a bit this season. The Brewers have the 17th-highest team groundball rate in the majors. With only a handful of Brewers batters creating hard contact, their outlook is disconcerting — especially when contrasted with Hudson’s elite groundball rate.


Cardinals-Brewers Pick

This matchup is a rare occasion with two sinkerballers squaring off against one another. Their styles make this angle very straightforward. Both pitchers possess an elite ability to produce groundballs, and neither will be facing a lineup that is particularly adept at getting the ball in the air.

Expect this game to fly by as each starter racks up groundballs and many outs in the process. Take the under 9.5.

Pick:  Under 9.5 (Play to 9).

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MLB Picks & Predictions for Rockies vs. Marlins: How Sharps Are Betting Thursday’s Matinee

mlb-picks-predictions-rockies-vs-marlins-sharp-betting-thursday-june-23-2022

Rockies vs. Marlins Odds

Rockies Odds +130
Marlins Odds -155
Over/Under 8.5 (-120/+100)
Date Thursday, June 23
Time 12:10 p.m. ET
Channel MLB Network

*Odds as of Thursday morning

An early afternoon MLB game between the 30-39 Colorado Rockies and the 31-36 Miami Marlins? Yup, a game that only bettors can love.

Considering many will be at work when this game gets underway, and the fact that it’s between two teams with losing records, it’s tough to imagine there being much interest in this game from casual bettors.

Interestingly enough, Rockies vs. Marlins has already quietly attracted oodles of market-moving action, and it’s fair to say that it’s professional bettors who are responsible.

Using the Action Network’s PRO betting tools, let’s dive into how the wiseguys are approaching Rockies vs. Marlins on Thursday afternoon.

Rockies vs. Marlins Pick

The action that we’ve tracked on Rockies vs. Marlins has been both one-sided and sharp.

On Wednesday night, Miami was listed as a -135 favorite at BetMGM, a number that now sits at -155.

Action Lab’s Bet Signals are reporting multiple waves of sharp action crashing on the Marlins, explaining why this moneyline has pushed north of -150 as of Thursday morning.

In addition, the Action Network’s MLB public betting data are showing that Miami is garnering 65% of the moneyline loot on just 53% of the tickets, confirming that oddsmakers are heavy on the home favorite.

As always, be sure to stop in at our MLB Live Odds Page before getting down on Rockies vs. Marlins to ensure you’re locking in the best line possible.

For example, FanDuel is hanging Marlins -148, which is top available number as of the time of writing.

PRO Report Pick: Marlins -148

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BetMGM Bonus Code: Place a Risk-Free Bet on the Stanley Cup!

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Oh my word … Can you say thriller? The Lightning and Avs took the ice in Tampa for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup. After a very intense back and forth affair, the Avalanche overcame a 3rd period deficit to treat us to free hockey. It was there that Nazem Kadri, fresh off thumb surgery, put one in the back of the net and put the Avs one game away from a Stanley Cup title. And BetMGM is letting you bet their quest for the Cup risk-free.

BetMGM Sportsbook is giving you a $1,000 risk-free bet on Game 5 of the Stanley Cup. That’s right — you can bet tomorrow’s game using only free money. You win and the winnings are yours. You lose and you get reimbursed what you lost. Special promos like this can’t be found just anywhere. To take advantage either use code ACTION or simply click one of the links below.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible risk-free offer to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here and use bonus code ACTION.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at other top sports betting sites.

Best BetMGM Bonus Codes for the NHL Playoffs, and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $1,000 to start your BetMGM career. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using bonus code ACTION, deposit, and bet up to $1,000 on any Stanley Cup or MLB game. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus. If your bet wins, congratulations — you keep the profits. But if it loses, no sweat! BetMGM reimburses you up to $1,000 in free bets.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

 

Not a fan of this offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

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If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 5:

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Colorado Avalanche, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for Thursday:

  • Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins, Thursday at 12:10 p.m. ET
  • San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves, Thursday at 12:20 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Cleveland Guardians at Minnesota Twins, Thursday at 1:10 p.m. ET
  • St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers, Thursday at 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics, Thursday at 3:37 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Thursday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Thursday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Thursday at 9:40 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Thursday, June 23

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Rockies to win by 4+ runs: boosted to +400 odds
  • Many more!

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FanDuel Promo Code: The Easiest Money You’ll Ever Make on the Cup!

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Ladies and gentleman, the Cup is in the building. Well, it will be tomorrow. Nazem Kadri’s hidden overtime winner was eventually uncovered and the Avalanche now find themselves leading the series 3-1 and on the precipice of their first Stanley Cup title since 2001. And FanDuel is letting you cash in on Game 5 guaranteed!

Not signed up at FanDuel yet? Then you can cash in with their special offer for new users (and you won’t need a promo code): Bet $5 on the Stanley Cup Finals, Get $200 No Matter What! Bet on the Avs to hoist the Cup. Or the Lightning to stay alive in the Rockies. It does not matter. You literally cannot lose here.

One thing to keep in mind: You don’t need a promo code for this offer for Action users, but you will have to click on the link below to redeem.

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FanDuel Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Arizona, Connecticut, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming — is giving all new users a risk-free sports bet.

Already have FanDuel? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best FanDuel Promo Codes and Bonus Offers for the Stanley Cup Finals, the MLB, and More

FanDuel, originally a company focused completely around daily fantasy sports (DFS), has now become a gambling giant in the U.S., with the country’s biggest sportsbook and online casino. They’re always on the cutting edge when it comes to their app and product, and you certainly won’t be disappointed with adding them to your sports betting portfolio.

They’re also very generous to both new and existing users. This offer is just for new ones, and here’s how it works: Simply sign up at FanDuel using this link, deposit, and place your risk-free bet. If you win, you keep the profits. If you lose, FanDuel gives you the money you wagered back, up to $1,000.

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If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 5:

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Colorado Avalanche, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for Thursday:

  • Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins, Thursday at 12:10 p.m. ET
  • San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves, Thursday at 12:20 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Cleveland Guardians at Minnesota Twins, Thursday at 1:10 p.m. ET
  • St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers, Thursday at 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics, Thursday at 3:37 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Thursday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Thursday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Thursday at 9:40 p.m. ET

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BetMGM Promo Code: Win $200 on Game 5 of Avalanche-Lightning w/ Code ACTIONNHL!

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Did you catch Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final last night? If not, you missed an Avalanche overtime victory to take a 3-1 series lead heading back to Colorado. Unfortunately, we have to wait until Friday night for Game 5 … but you don’t need to wait until then to bet Lightning-Avalanche at BetMGM Sportsbook. In fact, if you bet on Game 5 today, you can take advantage of this incredible NHL betting promo code: Bet $10 on Game 5 of Lightning-Avalanche, Win $200 if your team scores 1+ goal!

Yeah, you read that correctly. ONE goal! Just sign up using the links in this article or use the promo code ACTIONNHL to take advantage. Once your wager is placed, you’ll make an easy $200 on Friday night as soon as your team nets its first goal. It doesn’t get much easier than this no-brainer promotion.

To take advantage, make sure to use code ACTIONNHL simply click one of the links below.

Win $200 if the Avalanche or Lightning Score a Goal!

Bet $10+ on Avalanche-Lightning

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ goal

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible no-brainer promo to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best BetMGM Promo Codes the NHL Stanley Cup Finals, MLB and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $200 to start your account. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using code ACTIONNHL and bet $10 on the Stanley Cup Finals game of your choice. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus, and you’ll get credited $200 if your team nets a single goal (or more) in the game.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Win $200 if the Avalanche or Lightning Score a Goal!

Bet $10+ on Avalanche-Lightning

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ goal

New users only

 

Not a fan of this NHL offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

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If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 5:

  • Colorado Avalanche at Tampa Bay Lightning, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for Wednesday:

  • Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins, Thursday at 12:10 p.m. ET
  • San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves, Thursday at 12:20 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Cleveland Guardians at Minnesota Twins, Thursday at 1:10 p.m. ET
  • St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers, Thursday at 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics, Thursday at 3:37 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Thursday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Thursday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Thursday at 9:40 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Thursday, June 23

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Giants to score 7+ runs: boosted to +300 odds
  • Many more!

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Caesars Promo Code: Bet $1,500 Risk-Free on Lightning-Avalanche Using Code ACTION2215!

Now that last night’s Game 4 is in the books, are you ready for Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final? The Avalanche will have a chance to close out the series at home and win their first Cup since 2001, while the Lightning need a road win in order to stay alive. No matter what you’re expecting on Friday night, you should be betting the action with this incredible promo code from Caesars Sportsbook:

New Caesars users can claim a $1,500 risk-free first bet for Game 5 of Avalanche-Lightning! That’s right … a four-figure risk-free bet! And this promo code works for any betting market for the NHL Stanley Cup Final, including team moneylines, player props and much more. Not much of a hockey bettor? No worries — this code also works for MLB and the WNBA as well. Just make sure to use the code ACTION2215 when you sign up. Then you’ve locked in this special offer for a $1,500 risk-free bet.

Again, be sure to either use the links on this page or use code ACTION2215, or else you won’t be eligible for these offers.

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Caesars Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Michigan, New Jersey, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Tennessee, Indiana, West Virginia, and Virginia — is offering new users in all of its states a $1,500 risk-free bet!

Already have Caesars? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here and New York-specific offers here.

Best Caesars Promo Codes for the NHL Playoffs, MLB and More

Caesars is one of the fastest growing brands in the new sports betting industry, and for good reason: They’re one of the most generous sportsbooks to new and existing users, as shown by this offer. Not many places are giving away a $1,500 risk-free first bet!

Here’s how the promotion works: Sign up using the link on this page and with code ACTION2215 and make a deposit of up to $1,500 (you won’t need a deposit code). That’s all you have to do: Your first bet up to $1,500 will be completely risk-free.

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Here are the details for Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final (as if you needed a reminder):

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Colorado Avalanche, Friday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use your $1,500 risk-free bet on baseball, here’s today’s MLB slate:

  • Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins, Thursday at 12:10 p.m. ET
  • San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves, Thursday at 12:20 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds, Thursday at 12:35 p.m. ET
  • Cleveland Guardians at Minnesota Twins, Thursday at 1:10 p.m. ET
  • St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers, Thursday at 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics, Thursday at 3:37 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros at New York Yankees, Thursday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles at Chicago White Sox, Thursday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres, Thursday at 9:40 p.m. ET

Caesars Odds Boosts and Offers for Thursday, June 23

The bonuses keep coming at Caesars, even after you’ve redeemed a new user promo. For example, you can score new boosted odds markets daily! Here’s one available now:

  • No Run in 1st Inning of Rockies @ Marlins, Guardians @ Twins & Mariners @ Athletics on 6/23: boosted to +575 odds
  • Many more!

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Astros vs. Yankees MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Back Yordan Alvarez and the Road Dogs in Houston (Thursday, June 23)

astros-vs-yankees-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-thursday-june-23-2022

Astros vs. Yankees Odds

Astros Odds +105
Yankees Odds -125
Over/Under 8.5
Time 7:05 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The New York Yankees and Houston Astros are the two best teams in the American League with records of 51-18 and 43-25, respectively. They seem destined to meet in the Championship Series in the playoffs, which would be a rematch of the 2017 ALCS.

The Yankees are 8-2 in their last 10 games and have a +145 Run Differential this season compared to the Astros who are 7-3 in their last 10 games and have a +61 Run Differential. Who will get the job done in this probable postseason preview?

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Valdez and the Astros Look to Limit the Long Ball for New York

Framber Valdez has a 2.78 ERA and a 3.65 xFIP, which points to possible regression, but there are a few factors that should give him the edge in the pitching matchup compared to Jameson Taillon.

First, of course, is that Valdez’ xFIP is still lower than Taillon’s, and he’s completed six innings in 11 of 13 starts this year. Second, his power prevention numbers are quite a bit better as Valdez has allowed a .086 ISO to right-handed hitters and .024 ISO to left-handed hitters this season. The Yankees have a lot of power in the lineup as six hitters have ISOs of at least .180 against left-handed pitching this season, but Valdez has allowed just four home runs all year (0.44 HR/9).

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Can Taillon Continue Over-Performing for the Yankees?

The Yankees have the best record in all of baseball, and they’ve allowed only 208 runs this season, which is the fewest in the majors. The starting rotation has helped carry them to their sterling record so far, but they have to give up some runs eventually. Starters Nestor Cortes and Jordan Montgomery did that in each of the last two games when they allowed four earned runs each.

Thursday’s starter, Jameson Taillon, hasn’t completed six innings in any of his last three starts. Despite his 2.70 ERA, he has a 4.07 xFIP, which points to him also being a candidate for regression. Taillon has allowed a .145 ISO to right-handed batters and a .162 ISO to left-handed batters this season, but the main offensive weapon for Houston is Yordan Alvarez, who has a .409 ISO against right-handed pitching this year.

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Astros-Yankees Pick

I like the Astros here with the pitching advantage. Not only do they have the starting pitching edge, but the Yankees also used their closer Clay Holmes Wednesday and Monday night. It’s unlikely that New York would use him in three out of four days at this point in the season, so he could be unavailable in the late innings. Houston moneyline is a value play at plus-money here, and the best current line is at +114 at FanDuel.

Pick: Astros ML +114 | Play to +100

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2022 NBA Draft Odds: Paolo Banchero New Betting Favorite to Go No. 1 Overall After Massive Upheaval

nba-draft-number-1-pick-odds-jabari-smith-paolo-banchero-chet-holmgren-2022

It happened again — but this time, it seems far more serious.

As the Action Network reported Monday, several major American sportsbooks took significant sharp action on Paolo Banchero to go No. 1 overall in the 2022 NBA Draft. Those odds moved from +1600 on Sunday to less than +300 on Monday evening.

But, the sharps eventually bet back on Jabari Smith after multiple reporters — including ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski — said the Magic were still “likely” to take Jabari Smith Jr. with the No. 1 overall selection.

Over the next few days, the sharps continued their churn on Smith Jr. and his odds lengthened precipitously. The steam on Smith Jr. ended with Caesars listing him as long as -600. 

And then Wednesday night happened.

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Late Wednesday night at around roughly 12 a.m. ET, the books started moving toward Banchero to go No. 1 again.

This time, the movement was far more aggressive.

By the time the dust settled around 3 a.m. ET, there was a new favorite to go No. 1 in Thursday night’s draft: Banchero at a rough consensus of -200.

Smith Jr. had been as long as -600 but was now a consensus of +150 across major American sportsbooks. That’s a reduction in implied odds from 86% to 40% — a staggering change for the No. 1 draft prop, especially so considering the timeframe.

At Caesars, Smith Jr. is +140 with Banchero the favorite at -200. 

FanDuel held out changing their lines for longer than other sportsbooks, keeping Smith Jr. at a clip of -230 for some time. Eventually, FanDuel moved Banchero to even, then made him the favorite. The former Duke standout is -175 at the book as of publish.

Same roughly at DraftKings, Superbook, BetRivers, and PointsBet. Even factoring line copying from book to book, the pattern in which the books have gradually moved further and further toward Banchero is startling. 

This is the first time since the odds for the No. 1 pick opened that Smith has not been the favorite. 

Adrian Wojnarowski had said Wednesday that the Magic would take Smith No. 1: 

Kevin O’Connor of the Ringer had a much more skeptical view while still having Smith No. 1 in his latest mock draft. 

The odds for Smith to go No. 3 shortened considerably as well, with Smith now the favorite at +150 at PointsBet. There’s been a consistent thread of reporting indicating that the Thunder plan to take Chet Holmgren, though it should be noted OKC keeps its cards extremely close to its vest. 

The most logical path to Banchero going first given all of the prior reporting is a trade between the Rockets and Magic. The Magic, if they prefer Smith or Holmgren, could potentially trade back to third. Houston would get Banchero, who they are clearly locked in on, and the Magic still get the player they would take at No. 1. 

However, why does Houston do that deal? Why does Houston blink and offer up more assets to take the same player they’ve been consistently projected to take, especially given it’s more money for the No. 1 pick along with whatever assets are included?

We’ll keep you updated on the markets for the No. 1 pick but headed into the day of the draft, the upheaval Wednesday night forecasts more unexpected turns before the Magic — or whoever holds the No. 1 pick — sends its selection to the league.  

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Cubs vs. Pirates MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Value on Both a Side and Total in Pittsburgh (Thursday, June 23)

cubs-vs-pirates-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-thursday-june-23-2022

Cubs vs. Pirates Odds

Cubs Odds -115
Pirates Odds +100
Over/Under 8.5
Time 12:35 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Chicago Cubs look to escape Pittsburgh with a series split against the Pirates as they head into the finale of this four-game series.

So far, the series has been one of lopsided victories as the winner has won by six or more runs in each contest. This has also been surprising offensive output from two struggling offenses.

Justin Steele will look to clinch the series split on the hill for the Cubs and he’ll take on the surprisingly steady Jose Quintana.

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Chicago Cubs: Steele due for Strong Outing

The Chicago Cubs are still a mess. Somehow they are even more messy than the Pirates — a rarity in this day and age. The Cubs are 3-7 in their past 10 games and are simultaneously trying to keep up with the Pirates, while staying ahead of the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Central.

Cubs’ starter Justin Steele’s home/road splits can be a little deceiving. Only four of his 13 starts this season have come on the road and in that small sample he has only racked up 15 1/3 innings. His ERA in those four road starts is 7.04, but his FIP is a healthy 2.73.

Considering his home peripherals align with his traditional home stats, Steele could be due for some positive regression against the Pirates.

Unfortunately, the Cubs’ offense does not look as though they will be experiencing a positive regression. They are 29th in MLB in team wRC+ on the road against lefties over the past month.

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Pittsburgh Pirates: Signs of Progress Over Past Few Weeks

The Pirates have put their fate in the hands of their young prospects and they are going to let them learn at the big league level it seems. This is good.

Although the Pirates offense has struggled at home against lefties over the past month, the influx of youngsters should certainly give them a boost heading into the halfway point of the season.

Jose Quintana has also been a very steady option in the rotation and has gotten comfortable pitching at PNC Park. He has struggled over his past three starts as he’s been hit around for a 7.24 ERA and a 6.71 FIP. The Cubs’ offense could help him get back on track.

Additionally, the Pirates bullpen has been in the top half of the league in FIP and ERA over the past few weeks, so the signs that the Pirates rebuild is making progress are there.

Cubs-Pirates Pick

This isn’t the most exciting match up on the slate, but there are actually a few things that have some appeal in this game. The starting pitching against the opposing offenses alone are worthy of a look at the total. It’s presently at 8.5 runs, but may move down to 8 if it gets hammered hard.

Also, the Pirates’ moneyline near, or in some cases in, plus money with their “ace” on the mound is also another intriguing option. If the moneyline stays at +100 all the better, but this should be taken to the -110 threshold. Might as well take the under too. If it stays at -115 or moves to 8 and the odds are around -110, have yourself a day.

Pick: Pirates ML +100 and Under 8.5 -115

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MLB Odds, Picks & Previews: 3 Best Bets for Thursday Afternoon’s Slate, Including Dodgers vs. Reds & Mariners vs. Athletics (June 23)

mlb picks-odds-predictions-june 23-mariners vs athletics

Thursday’s MLB schedule is littered with afternoon affairs. What better way to spend your work day than sweating out some baseball?

There are seven games today that start before the sun goes down, and our analysts are on three of them, including a couple of first five inning bets and one player prop.

Here are our three best bets from Thursday afternoon’s Major League Baseball slate.

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MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Cincinnati Reds
12:35 p.m. ET
Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
12:35 p.m. ET
Seattle Mariners vs. Oakland Athletics
3:37 p.m. ET

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Cincinnati Reds

Pick
First Five Innings Under 4.5 (+100)
Book
FanDuel
Pitchers
Clayton Kershaw vs. Hunter Greene
First Pitch
12:35 p.m. ET

Will Boor: Taking an under in a game involving the high-powered Dodgers’ offense seems counterintuitive, but we have a few things working in our favor.

We’re getting a solid number here in part because Hunter Greene’s 5.26 ERA doesn’t inspire a ton of confidence. However, the hard-throwing right-hander has pitched to a 3.68 xERA, meaning he’s thrown better than the surface numbers indicate. Greene also ranks in the 73rd percentile in Hard-Hit%, the 82nd percentile in xBA and the 87% percentile in K%.

It’s also telling that Greene has lowered both his ERA and WHIP each month this season, a sign he’s improving and learning what it takes to succeed at this level. Yes, he gave up four runs in five innings in his last start, but all those runs came via the homer and prior to that he’d given up just one run over 12 innings across two starts.

Greene’s ERA is a little more than a half-run better at home (4.91) than on the road (5.49) and he’s shown an ability to pitch well against the Dodgers, having thrown five scoreless against them in mid-April before running out of gas in the sixth.

Not only do the metrics suggest Greene is going to start having better results, but the Dodgers are playing without Mookie Betts. Yes, the lineup is still loaded, but Betts is obviously mega-talented and there’s always a drop whenever a player of his caliber is absent.

If Greene can keep the Dodgers’ offense in check, we should have a good chance of cashing this ticket as Clayton Kershaw — who has a 2.64 xERA and is in the 80th percentile or better in a number advanced metrics — should carve his way through a Reds lineup that ranks toward the bottom of the league in numerous offensive categories.

The Reds’ bullpen ranks last in the league in ERA and it’s entirely possible the Dodgers pile on runs late, so let’s have Greene get us through five innings and get out while it’s still safe. The first five under has hit in 52% of both Dodgers and Reds games this season.

This line opened at 4.5 (+100), play it down to -120. I wouldn’t play it if it drops to 4.

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Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates

Pick
Cubs First Five Innings -120
Book
FanDuel
Pitchers
Justin Steele vs. Jose Quintana
First Pitch
12:35 p.m. ET

Anthony Dabbundo: Jose Quintana has managed to avoid disaster on the mound at this point in the MLB season, but I’m not convinced his 3.66 ERA is going to last much longer.

When you look at his underlying numbers, he has the lowest K-BB% of his career because he’s not generating as many strikeouts as he used to at age 33. Despite a career zone rate in the 40s, Quintana’s percentage of pitches in the zone has dipped below 35%. This means he’s reliant on getting a lot of chases and swings and misses outside of the zone.

I’m skeptical of how sustainable that strategy is for a pitcher who has clearly below-average stuff with just three pitches and a fastball that sits at 91 mph.

Quintana’s xERA of 4.98 is a much better indicator of where he is as a pitcher and the Cubs’ lineup has plenty of power in the middle of the order to take advantage of when Quintana is forced to come into the zone. His barrel rate allowed remains solidly below league average and the Cubs are above average at avoiding chases on pitches outside of the strike zone.

Justin Steele is the much better starting pitcher and I’m going to back him in the first five innings on Thursday afternoon. His xERA of 3.39 and ability to avoid hard contact is much more impressive than Quintana.

I’d play it at -120 or better.

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Seattle Mariners vs. Oakland Athletics

Pick
Ramon Laureano Over 1.5 Total Bases (+160)
Book
FanDuel
Pitchers
Robbie Ray vs. Frankie Montas
First Pitch
3:37 p.m. ET

Jules Posner: Ramon Laureano broke an 0-for-13 skid in his first at-bat on Wednesday night. He gets a pretty appealing matchup Thursday afternoon against the Seattle Mariners’ Robbie Ray.

Ray has struggled on the road this season and over his past four road starts, he’s surrendered a .279 batting average to right-handed hitters. Additionally, righties are slugging .574 against Ray in his road starts and nine of the 17 hits Ray has given up to righties have gone for extra bases.

Laureano hopefully can build upon Wednesday’s game and take advantage of Ray. Over his past 24 plate appearances at home against LHP, Laureano is hitting .333 with a .238 ISO. Overall, Laureano is hitting .316 against LHP and .286 against LHP at home this season.

Another item worth noting is that he did go 1-for-4 with 2 Ks a walk against Marco Gonzalez and Daniel Lynch in his last two games against LHP, so he could be due Thursday afternoon.

It is highly likely Laureano’s total bases will be in plus money, so that should be the move. However, this could be played at -120 or better.

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Giants vs. Braves MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Another Low-Scoring Affair in Atlanta? (Thursday, June 23)

giants-vs-braves-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-thursday-june-23-2022

Giants vs. Braves Odds

Giants Odds +140
Braves Odds -165
Over/Under 9.5 (-110/-110)
Time 12:20 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

We have the fourth and final game of this series as the NL East‘s Atlanta Braves host the NL West‘s San Francisco Giants. Two of the first three games of this series went under this total.

Will we see another low-scoring affair between these two teams, or can the bats pick it up this time around?

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San Francisco Giants: Runs Likely at a Premium

The San Francisco Giants enter this contest with many low-scoring games under their belt recently as there have been nine or fewer runs scored in 15 of their past 17 contests (88%). I expect this trend to continue as left-hander Alex Wood is slated to take the mound for the Giants.

Through 13 starts this season, Wood is 5-5 with a 4.32 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP. While those surface-level stats are not very good, Wood’s metrics suggest some positive regression should be around the corner.

This season, Wood boasts a .321 xwOBA, .270 xBA and a .429 xSLG. There have been nine or fewer runs scored in four of Wood’s past five starts (80%).

In his one appearance against the Braves last season, Wood threw three perfect innings and recorded four strikeouts. However, Wood may not get much run support as the Giants are slated to go against right-hander Kyle Wright.

Since May 1st, the Giants rank just 22nd in the league in BA and 18th in SLG when facing right-handed pitchers.

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Atlanta Braves: Wright Looks to Keep Rolling

Just like San Francisco, the Atlanta Braves have seen many low-scoring games of late. There have been nine or fewer runs scored in 11 of Atlanta’s past 18 games (61%).

As I mentioned above, right-hander Kyle Wright is slated to take the mound for the Braves. Through 13 starts this season, Wright is 7-4 with a 2.94 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP.

Wright’s metrics are just as strong as he boasts a .297 xwOBA, .235 xBA and a .369 xSLG. There have now been nine or fewer runs scored in 11 of Wright’s 13 starts this season (85%).

Following Wright is one of the league’s best bullpens. Since May 1st, the Braves’ relief pitching ranks third in the league in ERA, seventh in BA, fourth in SLG and fifth in wOBA.

However, this pitching staff may not get much run support as the Braves are slated to go against left-hander Alex Wood. Through 79 career plate appearances against Wood, the current Braves roster possesses a mere .184 xBA, .303 xSLG and a .228 xwOBA.
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Giants-Braves Pick

Backing all of the strong trends in this matchup, I am riding with the under to hit for the third time in four games between these two teams. I am more than comfortable with backing the Braves pitching staff as Wright has been dominant this year and the relief pitching has been on a tear recently.

Add to the fact that San Francisco has struggled recently against right-handed pitchers and it’s clear we shouldn’t see too many runs scored from the visiting club. However, trouble may arise with Atlanta’s offense as they square off against a left-hander.

I believe we are getting good value in the under here because Atlanta has crushed left-handers recently. That being said, Wood has had good success against this Atlanta lineup.

If he can get deep enough into the game, then hopefully San Francisco’s struggling bullpen will not have the opportunity to surrender too many runs.

Pick: Giants/Braves u9.5 (-110) | Play up to (-125)

Rockies vs. Marlins MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Pitching Depth Gives Road Underdog an Edge (Thursday, June 23)

rockies-vs-marlins-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-thursday-june-23-2022

Rockies vs. Marlins Odds

Rockies Odds +110
Marlins Odds -130
Over/Under 8.5 (+100/-120)
Time 12:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Kyle Freeland and the Colorado Rockies wrap up a series against Braxton Garrett and the Marlins in Miami. Freeland has struggled this season and his peripherals are almost all below average, with the exception of his fastball spin rate and walk rate. Garrett, however, only flashed a semblance of being a reasonable starter against the Houston Astros when he pitched 5 2/3 strong innings on June 11. That said, the Marlins are abysmal against left-handed pitching. They rank second-to-last with a 68 wRC+. The Rockies, meanwhile, have a team wRC+ of 103. This is the difference in this game and reason to take the Rockies on the moneyline. There is not enough of a difference in the pitching for either of these teams. Colorado’s above average offense against lefties should propel the Rockies to victory.

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Colorado Rockies: Matchup sets up well for Freeland

Freeland has not had a good season. Luckily, the Marlins are only walking at a 7.8% clip off of southpaws in June — a clear edge for Colorado, as mentioned above.

The Marlins only have four players — Miguel Rojas, Jesús Aguilar, Nick Fortes and Jacob Stallings — who have a xwOBA over .330 off of left-handers as Joey Wendle and Brian Anderson are on the Injured List. The bottom of this lineup has not succeeded lately against lefties and Freeland should at least be able to hold his own. After all, he has pitched well in June with a 3.15 ERA, so hopefully that is a signal for a strong start here.

Tyler Kinney and Ty Blach are both on the Injured List, which means the Rockies will be without some pivotal relievers. Colorado has five other relievers with an xFIP under 4.00, so even if the bullpens are close, expect Freeland to go deeper into this game and save the ‘pen some relief duties.

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Miami Marlins: Lack of Bullpen Depth Could be an Issue

Braxton Garrett has had a rough go of it. He has faced some great offenses in the San Francisco Giants, the Houston Astros and the New York Mets. It is not like the Rockies are an offensive juggernaut, but they have pretty capable bats to match up with Garrett. Kris Bryant is on the Injured List, but Colorado has five hitters with a xwOBA over .340. The Rockies have more depth in their starting lineup, so Garrett will have some strenuous innings. Ryan McMahon is a name to watch, since he boasts a .517 xwOBA with a 91.7 mph Average Exit Velocity off of lefties in June.

The Marlines have Cole Sulser on the IL, but the rest of the bullpen is healthy. They have a similar bullpen to the Rockies, but the issue here is Garrett will not go as deep into this game as Freeland because of the offense he is facing. This could present some problems for Manager Don Mattingly and the Marlins’ bullpen depth as they used six relievers on Tuesday night. Miami will be short-handed, which should give the Rockies another leg up.
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Rockies-Marlins Pick

Kyle Freeland is no Cy Young contender, but he has strung together a few promising starts and won’t issue many free passes. Braxton Garrett is still raw and given the major discrepancy between how these teams have hit lefties of late, the Rockies have the edge. Freeland should be able to log at least five innings and give the game over to a fresher bullpen. Garrett will not have that luxury. Take the Rockies at +110 and play them to -130. Colorado is the better hitting team with more pitching alternatives than the Marlins.

Pick: Colorado Rockies +110 | play to -130

Orioles vs. White Sox Odds, Pick, Prediction: Thriving Offenses Face Off in Chicago (June 23)

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Orioles vs. White Sox Odds

Orioles Odds +135
White Sox Odds -160
Over/Under 9 (-105/-115)
Time 8:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The White Sox were expected to run away with the AL Central division and began the season as the betting favorite. Now as we turn to summer, they find themselves with a losing record and sitting in third place.

Baltimore was expected to finish last in the AL East and that is right where the Orioles find themselves. However, after going 52-110 last season, they are on pace for 72 wins and have been pretty feisty lately.

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Baltimore Orioles: Mountcastle, Rutschman Heating Up

The Orioles have a pitching staff full of young arms and 26-year-old Dean Kremer will make his fourth start of the season Thursday. Kremer was acquired as part of the trade from the Dodgers for Manny Machado in 2018 and has been up and down from Triple-A over the past three years.

In 20 career starts, Kremer has a 6.06 ERA, but in three starts this year he has an ERA of 2.35. He has gotten better in each start this season and tossed six scoreless innings against the Rays in his last outing. Kremer throws his fastball over 51% of the time and while it has allowed a .183 wOBA, the .309 xwOBA is a bit concerning.

Baltimore’s offense has been very mediocre this season and ranks just 26th in wOBA and wRC+. However, some of that can be attributed to the ridiculous new stadium changes at Camden Yards. On the road this year, the Orioles have 97 wRC+, 17th in baseball. Compare that to their 85 wRC+ at home.

Two Orioles players have been really heating up recently. Ryan Mountcastle has a .423 wOBA and a 180 wRC+ with four home runs over the past 12 games. But more importantly, top prospect Adley Rutschman has a .382 wOBA and a 152 wRC+ over past two weeks.

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Chicago White Sox: Is Regression Coming for Cueto?

We aren’t actually buying that Johnny Cueto is somehow good again, are we? The 36-year-old is somehow sporting a 2.95 ERA through seven games and is coming off seven shutout innings in a dominant win over the Astros.

The negative regression has to be coming though. Sure, his 3.25 xERA is still pretty good. But Cueto hasn’t posted an ERA under 4.00 since 2018. He ranks in the bottom 30% of the league in strikeout percentage and the bottom five percent in Whiff rate. He sits in the bottom 21% in average exit velocity and gives up a lot of hard contact.

The league’s most disappointing offense looks like it has finally turned the corner. Over the season as a whole, Chicago ranks below average in most offensive stats, but the White Sox rank third in wOBA and second in wRC+ over the past two weeks.

With all the big names on this roster, it is 24-year-old Andrew Vaughn who has led the way. The right fielder is hitting .376 over the past 30 days and has a .418 wOBA over the past two weeks.

Orioles-White Sox Pick

The White Sox offense finally appears to be rounding into form and is playing like one of the best teams in the league over the past few weeks. Andrew Vaughn and Luis Robert are red hot.

Despite his solid recent form, Dean Kremer is still an experienced pitcher and likely has negative regression coming his way. An upward trending Chicago lineup is certainly in good position to bring it.

Speaking of negative regression, Johnny Cueto can’t possibly keep this up. He began the year in the minors and is giving up a ton of hard contact.

Baltimore’s biggest weakness is that it has the fifth highest strikeout rate in the league. Well Cueto rarely strikes anybody out (6.96 K/9 rate) and has one of the lowest Whiff rates in the league.

Behind these two starting pitchers are two bullpen units that rank 23rd and 24th in reliever ERA over the past month.

Over the past 10 games, these teams are a combined 15-5 with two offenses rounding into form and two pitchers due for negative regression. I’ll back over 9 at -105, play to -110.

Pick: Over 9 (-105)
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How to Bet on the NBA Draft: 7 Tips and Betting Strategies

The NBA season is officially over, but there’s still plenty left to bet around the Association with the 2022 NBA Draft on Thursday. The approach to betting on drafts — NBA, or NFL — is different from betting on an actual game.

Let’s say you have the perfect read on some NFL bet, like Bills -3. Your confidence couldn’t be higher. The game starts, Josh Allen goes down with an injury on the first play, and all the sudden your perfect Bills -3 ticket is toast. There was no way of predicting Allen was going to be injured. (Just like there’s no way you can predict whether James Harden had a night out at the club the night before a game.)

There are so many unpredictable variables that can make a seemingly perfect bet go wrong in the regular betting space. For the draft, though, fewer variables like game-day injuries exist. Adam Silver just has to walk 20 feet to the podium, read the card and you’re a winner. Obviously it’s not that easy, but the secret sauce to betting the draft is pretty simple.

Here are my seven core principles to betting a draft.

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Eliminate Your Own Bias

It’s almost cliche at this point, but it’s the most important aspect to the process and work. Eliminate any personal bias and opinion you might have on a player. It does not matter.

You are not a general manager and you are not the one making the pick. Think of it like you’re working for TMZ and your only job is to figure out what each team’s front office is thinking.

Mocks, Mocks, and More Mocks … But Not Too Many Mocks

Mock drafts are addicting, click-bait monsters. Narrowing down a core group of experts you trust and sticking to their mock is important. If you just start looking at every single mock draft that hits the internet, you’re creating a chaos of opinions that makes the process messy and suboptimal.

The context that goes along with projected order of picks each expert writes is almost as important as where they put them. Some experts just break down the team needs and an analysis of the player — which I just don’t bother reading — but draft experts and NBA insiders will add what they are hearing in terms of intel, which can be gold.

Combining your mock drafts into an aggregate EDP (Estimated Draft Position) is essentially the draft equivalent to creating a power rating for a sport. The difference between your mock EDP and an individual player’s over/under will tell you how much value there is in the number.

Luckily, I did all the work here for you here (you’re welcome).

Pay Attention to Big Boards

Here, you’ll follow the same process with mocks, taking player rankings of the experts you value, creating a rating and cross referencing that to an individual player’s over/under.

I value big boards a lot more for the NBA draft than I do for the NFL draft. In the NFL draft, teams are betting a lot more based on need, and certain positions in the NFL having far more value than others. In the NBA, you find teams drafting the best available player a lot more often, so an aggregate ranking relative to the field has a lot more value.

The best example when comparing the two: You wouldn’t see someone ranked similar to Pittsburgh Steelers Quarterback Kenny Pickett going in the first round of the NBA draft, but since he’s a Quarterback, it doesn’t matter in the NFL. (Picketts mittens for hands also wouldn’t work in the NBA.)

Keep Track of How the Odds Move for the Draft

There isn’t a more sensitive type of bet than draft odds. Books will move the juice on the smallest of bets, and pull any bet within seconds if it gets a storm of money coming in.

When there is a huge line move on a player, it’s easy to jump to conclusions and say “someone knows something” and chase steam. It could very well have been books reacting to one person betting a larger than normal amount on a side.

There’s the age old theory that “Vegas knows everything” and they have inside sources that bettors don’t. Even if that’s true (could be), it doesn’t really apply to the draft.

Books know just as much as everyone else, while also having to worry about all the other sports going on they have to set lines for. And when “sharps” consist of the vast majority of bettors who are betting draft, you can probably understand why books might be extremely reactive to any larger-than-normal action coming in.

There isn’t a public or contrarian side to a draft bet. The public and the sharps are all the same in this context. I am by no means saying to blindly bet the juiced side, but you can reasonably assume the juiced side is the right one. You need to be OK with laying juice. Laying -300 when the price really should be minus-infinity is better than betting -110 when it should be +300.

Don’t Squeeze Yourself Into Needing the Perfect Draft

A couple years ago for the NFL draft I had a bunch of under bets and they were all sub 10.5 lines. I didn’t realize I set myself up where I basically needed to predict the top 10 picks perfectly in order to make any money. David Gettleman drafted Andrew Thomas at No. 4 and I was wrecked. I learned that lesson the hard way, but it was one of the simplest and most important lessons I’ve learned.

This past NFL draft I had 24 over/under bets — 15 unders and nine overs. The more you have on one side the more you need to break your way. If I have an under 20.5 on a specific player, the next bets I’m looking at are all the overs in the 15-plus range. Hoping that the under hitting means some guy is falling and his over will hit.

Take (Almost) Everything With a Grain of Salt

Unless it’s someone like Adrian Wojnarowski or Adam Schefter of ESPN tweeting out a rumor, don’t overreact to any intel one guy is hearing. Wait for supporting intel that aligns with it from other guys reputable sources.

When you’re on the fence, sleep on it. I’d rather miss out on a bet that I waited on, then bet something based on intel that was just not true.

Chaos is good. More chaos means more opportunities you can leverage. If there wasn’t any chaos, sportsbooks would  just make every bet -10000.

Twitter and Reddit Are Underrated

Search Player X, Player X & Team, and click into “latest”. The actionable intel should be from established media people, but there is a ton of value in stumbling upon random Twitter accounts that are replying to tweets you might have missed, or tweeting about intel they might have seen elsewhere. This stuff isn’t actionable, but it creates the idea of XYZ happening so you can be on the lookout for anything that might align.

Leverage the unique betting opportunity the draft presents. There’s only two of them a year and there’s no guarantee the valuable draft markets will be offered every year. The process for each is essentially the same, all gas baby.

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North Carolina’s Online Sports Betting Hopes Go Up in Flames

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After concocting a last-minute deal, hurrying bills through multiple committees and both the House and Senate passing online sports betting, North Carolina will continue to outlaw it.

Hope for online sports betting died Wednesday night when the House of Representatives voted 50-51 against a bill (S.B. 688) that would authorize up to 12 mobile wagering apps, effectively killing it with seven days left in the 2022 session.  It was a complete nose-dive for this year’s push, which had gained steam in the past couple of weeks.

Moments before voting down S.B. 688 the House passed a near identical bill (S.B. 38) 51-50 that would legalize online sports betting, but at a higher tax rate.

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While it’s scheduled for another vote Thursday, S.B. 38 was tied to the fate of S.B. 688, which passed the Senate last year before failing in the House Wednesday.

Rep. Jeffrey Elmore voted different ways on each bill.

The notion of expanding betting beyond casinos, where it’s currently confined to in the Tar Heel State, was met with a diverse array of criticism from lawmakers, who discussed addiction, corruption and constitutionality.

Last Minute Deal to Blame?

Why two bills, you ask? 

You’re not alone. A lot of lawmakers asked that very question during Wednesday night’s debate.

Rep. Pricey Harrison called it the most confusing legislative process she’s been a part of in her 18 years in the statehouse. She led the charge against both bills.

S.B. 38 originally authorized small business owners to represent their firms in court, but on Tuesday it was gutted and replaced with language from S.B. 688 — except with a 14% tax rate instead of an 8% one. This allowed changes without having to restart the legislative journey.

That was expected to satisfy demands from Gov. Roy Cooper and key House lawmakers that the state would make more revenue off online sports betting, but that wasn’t enough to sway others.

“These bills are running in concurrence so that if one is passed the governor has the right to veto and consider both bills,” said Rep. Jason Saine, who carried both bills for the House. “We believe we have a construct that allows us to do what we want to do.”

Myriad of Concerns

The extra $25 to $50 million a year the state would make under online sports betting isn’t worth the cost of spreading addiction, Rep. Pat B. Hurley said.

That revenue amounts to less than .2% of this year’s budget, Harrison pointed out.

Rep. Wesley Harris pushed back on that, saying that without the bill the state would continue to lack the resources to help gambling addicts. 

Under an amended version of S.B. 38 $2 million a year would go toward gambling addiction treatment and awareness.

Lawmakers also criticized the irregular process in which the bills progressed, but Harris pushed back on that as well.

“688 was passed last year and I don’t think there’s been a day that’s passed where the lobbyists haven’t come to our offices asking us what issues we have with this bill,” Harris said. “That’s what 38 is. It’s been an open dialogue.”

Another key reason proponents created the trailer bill: North Carolina’s constitution prevents lawmakers from imposing an income tax higher than 7%. After concerns that the original bill could be struck down by a court,  SB 38 sought to remedy that with alternate language, though some still had their doubts.

“I appreciate the argument being brought up, but at this point in time there’s no clear cut constitutional issue with this bill,” said Rep. John Szoka. “We can argue back and forth about it, but like with every other bill, someone can bring it to court if they wish.”

No College Betting

Perhaps the  only thing more shocking than a lawmaker voting for and against essentially a word-for-word copy of the same bill was the overwhelming appetite lawmakers had to ban betting on college sports.

An amendment to ban online betting on all college sporting events passed 62-39. If both bills had passed North Carolina would’ve been a Governor’s signature away from becoming the first state to institute a ban on college athletics.

Oregon is the exception, though its ban on college betting comes from a tie-up with the state lottery controlling education, not from a law. Other states like New Jersey and New York don’t allow betting on their own colleges, though no states ban betting on out-of-state schools.

Rep. John Autry referenced a few point-shaving scandals that allegedly occurred under legendary basketball coach Jim Valvano in the 1980’s and 1990’s during his tenure at North Carolina State.

Saine warned that it would cost the state much of its projected revenue.

“If we want to protect integrity we need to know who’s betting what,” he said. “If we take it out we won’t.”

Saine’s running for reelection next year. Unless many of his colleagues lose their seats its hard to see the legislature passing online betting next year — or allowing college betting.

Until then, North Carolinians will likely continue to bet offshore or travel to Virginia or Tennessee to place legal wagers.

Those states have generated $92 million combined in revenue from sports betting taxes.

Travelers Championship Market Report: Bettors Targeting Scottie Scheffler, Keegan Bradley

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We’re a week removed from the U.S. Open and after a grueling period of play, the absence of a number of big names from this week’s Travelers Championship has opened up the betting pool.

Justin Thomas, Will Zalatoris and, of course, Brooks Koepka, are out of this week’s field.

At Caesars, Scottie Scheffler has drawn 11% of the betting tickets and 12% of the handle. At BetMGM, Scheffler has drawn 7.4% of the tickets and 7.2% of the handle.

GolfBet

Jordan Spieth is another popular candidate at the Travelers. He’s attracted 6.0% of the tickets at Caesars and 7.1% of the tickets at BetMGM, but he accounts for the highest handle at BetMGM.

Another popular name for bettors this week is Keegan Bradley, who grew up in the New England area. At +2500, Bradley has drawn the second-most money at Caesars to take home the Travelers.

Bradley had an impressive U.S. Open, but he’s missed the cut at the past two iterations of this event. At BetMGM, Bradley is generating 3.3% of the betting tickets and a near-identical 3.4% of the handle.

Rory McIlroy is generating single-digit betting ticket numbers and handle percentages at both BetMGM and Caesars.

He earned a T5 finish at the U.S. Open.

Wimbledon Qualifying Odds, Picks, Analysis: Best Bets for the Final Round (June 23)

It all comes down to this, as 32 men will vie for the 16 spots awarded to qualifiers in the main draw at Wimbledon.

With an incredibly important payday on the line for all the men in this rankings range, let’s take a look at a pair of matches that present a good betting opportunity for Thursday.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

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 Andreas Seppi (-210) vs. Lukas Klein (+155)

6 a.m. ET

It’s important to keep in mind that the final round of qualifying at Wimbledon is unique to the other grand slams, with the matches shifting to best-of-five sets from the best-of-three format employed in the first two qualifying stages.

That’s something to note as we delve into the match between Lukas Klein and the veteran Andreas Seppi.

Despite Klein only having six professional matches to his name on grass courts and Seppi being comfortable on quick, low-bouncing surfaces, Klein at a very cheap price is a play to get behind.

In his six career grass court matches, Klein has posted an impressive 5-1 record. His wins in qualifying over the big-serving Yannick Hanfmann and consistent baseliner Billy Harris were both in straight sets and rather convincing.

His big serve and forehand combination play well on the surface. Klein’s hold rate last season was an impressive 86% and in the two matches in qualifying to this point, he’s gone 20-for-20 on serve, winning over 78% of points behind his first serve.

The lower bounce hasn’t hurt him yet and he’s already dispatched a consistent, flat hitter in Harris.

Finally, the aforementioned prolonged format is another reason to like the 24-year-old Klein. He has a powerful game and an aggressive style, while the 38-year-old Italian is in the twilight of his career.

While I don’t mind the over, going for the moneyline looks to be the better position here.

Pick: Klein ML (+155 via FanDuel)

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Lukas Rosol (-192) vs. Renzo Olivo (+142)

6 a.m. ET

Another choice that may seem odd on the surface, but looks to present some value once you dig into it features Lukas Rosol and Renzo Olivo.

While the clay-court grinding style of the Argentine may not seem like a logical fit on grass, there are a few reasons to like him in this spot.

The first is that he can be really strong on return when he’s on top of his game. That ability is worth a lot on a surface that is heavily serve-oriented.

Secondly, he’s the much better mover/athlete and his dropshot has proven to be a key weapon in his first two rounds. Anyone that can effectively pull the string effectively with the dropshot on a court that rewards slicing and lower bounces is going to have an advantage.

That becomes an even more potent weapon against a poor-moving 36-year-old. It also forces Rosol to concede points or expend energy. Again, in a format that will reward athleticism and endurance, that is an advantage for Olivo.

With Rosol being in pretty poor form entering qualifiers – he had won just one match in five events on any of the professional tours – and having beaten a fish out of water in Seyboth Wild and a totally different type of opponent in Chris Eubanks, I’m keen to fade him.

Even if at first glance, Olivo doesn’t seem to be the best candidate to beat Rosol, this is a great price.

Pick: Olivo ML (+142 via FanDuel)

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2022 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship Odds & Picks: Can Minjee Lee Fend Off Nelly Korda, Lydia Ko, Others at Congressional?

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As the men compete in this week’s Travelers Championship in Connecticut, the women tee off not far down the road at their third major championship.

Things will hit a fever pitch in Bethesda, Md., on Thursday when the 2022 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship gets under way at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md.

The winner of the four-day, 72-hole event will walk away with a $1.35 million prize from the $9 million purse. The total purse has doubled from the $4.5 million awarded at the 2021 championship.

Headlining the field is Minjee Lee, who earned the second major title of her career last month in a convincing, four-shot victory at the U.S. Women’s Open in Southern Pines, N.C. The Australian star, who’s at No. 3 in the latest Rolex Women’s World Golf rankings, won her first major last year at the Amundi Evian Championship.

Right behind Lee among the logical contenders is Jin Young Ko, who’s currently atop the latest Rolex rankings. The South Korean standout has won two of the five major titles contested in women’s golf, both coming three years ago at the ANA Inspiration (now called the Chevron Championship) and the Evian Championship. Ko finished in fourth place at the U.S. Women’s Open.

Rounding out the featured list is Nelly Korda, the world’s No. 2-ranked player with seven career wins. Korda missed several events, including the Chevron, after being diagnosed with a blood clot in her arm.

Pictured: Nelly Korda plays a second shot at the 2022 U.S.Women’s Open at Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club in Southern Pines, N.C. Photo credit: David Cannon/Getty Images

This will be Korda’s third start since the Drive On Championship back in the first week of February in Fort Myers, Fla., with a T8 effort at the U.S. Women’s Open and runner-up showing at the Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give last time out. Jennifer Kupcho outlasted Korda and Leona Maguire in a three-way playoff at last week’s tournament.

So, let’s take an in-depth look into this deep field and see where we can find betting value. Obviously, there is a ton of it out there.

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Top Contenders

Nelly Korda (+900 at BetMGM)

It has been quite a long haul for Korda, who dealt with that aforementioned health issue/scare that kept her sidelined for almost four months.

However, the seven-time winner hasn’t missed a beat since her return. That  T8 effort at the Pine Needles probably felt more like top 3 performance due to the fact it was her first event back after the long hiatus and the tournament was played in ghastly weather conditions.

The tournament’s reigning champion was brilliant at last year’s event, finish at 19-under en route to a three-shot victory. Korda fired a sizzling 9-under 62 in the second round that set the stage for a pair of 4 unders on the weekend.

Korda is part of one of the featured groups, teeing off at 7:33 a.m. ET with former champions Brooke Henderson (2016) and Hall of Famer Inbee Park, who won this major three consecutive times from 2013 to 2015.

You can shop around for the best number for Korda prior to making your bets, but I don’t think we’re going to find anything better than the +900 being offered at BetMGM, Caesars and others at the time of this writing.


STATISTICS (RANK) Nelly Korda Lydia Ko
Scoring Average 69.579 (5th) 69.698 (6th)
Strokes Gained Total/Round 2.410 (2nd) 2.180 (5th)
SG — Tee to Green/Round 1.900 (3rd) 0.670 (T32)
SG — Off the Tee/Round 0.940 (3rd) -0.530 (T143)
SG — Putting/Round 0.520 (36th) 1.500 (1st)

Lydia Ko (+1200 at BetMGM)

You really have to love what Lydia Ko is doing on the golf course after going through such an extended rough patch. After numerous changes in coaches, caddies and equipment sponsors, the world’s No. 4-ranked player is in some of the best form of her entire career.

Ko, who won the Gainbridge LPGA at Boca Raton in Florida in her second start this season, finished solo fifth or better in four of her last five outings. Suffice it to say, she’s probably the most in-form player in the world at the moment, but just can’t seem to get over the hump and land her 18th career tour win.

The reason I like Ko so much is what she does on and around the greens. She ranks No. 1 in Putting Average (28.51) and Strokes Gained: Putting per Round (1.500), plus she’s third overall (1.72) in Putting per Greens in Regulation. You need that skill set at Congressional, so I think she’s a perfect fit for this venue.

Throw in the fact Ko is first in Sand Saves (69.81 percent) and sixth in SG: Approach The Green (1.060), and I like her chances of picking up the victory.

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Minjee Lee (+1400 at BetMGM)

It’s really hard to find any flaws in the latest major champion’s game. She was fantastic navigating the course and weather conditions at Pine Needles on her way to what turned out to be a comfortable victory.

Now, Lee looks to secure her third win in her last five starts — she triumphed at Cognizant Founders Cup on May 12 — and will hope her uncharacteristic final round, 2-over 74 at the Meijer was just an anomaly.

Lee, who wound up T18 at the Meijer, leads the tour in an array of statistical categories, including Scoring Average (68.81) and Rounds Under Par (28) this season. She is also No. 1 in Rounds in the 60s (21), but her putting is still an area that needs to improve. Lee ranks a dismal 143rd overall in SG: Putting Per Round at -0.870 during the campaign.

Oddsmakers at BetMGM are offering the best current price on Lee, with other books putting her as low as +1100 in the market. I actually think this is a fair number, but if you feel like taking a risk you could hold out on an even bigger number in live wagering if she starts slow.


STATISTICS (RANK) Minjee Lee Brooke Henderson
Scoring Average 68.806 (1st) 69.538 (3rd)
Strokes Gained Total/Round 2.560 (1st) 2.000 (6th)
SG — Tee to Green/Round 3.420 (1st) 2.050 (2nd)
SG — Off the Tee/Round 0.640 (12th) 0.880 (5th)
SG — Putting/Round -0.870 (143rd) -0.050 (88th)

Brooke Henderson (+1600 at PointsBet)

It has been a while where I’ve had Henderson among my top selections, but her inclusion in this quartet is more than warranted.

The Canadian has been lights out the majority of the season, sans a three-event stretch in April that saw her withdrawal from LOTTE Championship in Hawaii before missing the cut at DIO Implant LA Open and Palos Verdes Championship presented by Bank of America.

Henderson was dealing with some health issues, according to a story in the Toronto Star, but was feeling good enough to play the U.S. Women’s Open and wound up a solid T15 at Pine Needles.


“I’m really looking forward to getting back out there. When you’re not feeling well, trying to compete against the best in the world can be really difficult. Listening to your body and knowing when to take a step back is key for any athlete.” — Henderson, in a May 30 report from the Toronto Star


The standout followed up that effort up with her 11th victory on June 10 at the ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer. Her T9 performance at the Meijer would have been even better — perhaps even worthy of a win — had she not settled for an even-par 72 in the final round after going 15 under through her opening match 54 holes.

I jumped on these +1600 odds when PointsBet opened wagering and will probably tack on more before the betting window closes. Henderson enjoyed a magical moment at Sahalee Country Club in Sammamish, Wa., at the 2016 edition of this tournament.

Don’t be shocked if Henderson is right there come Sunday’s final round.

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Our 6 Favorite Player Prop Bets

ODDS BEST BOOK
Nelly Korda (Top 5 | Top 10) +200 | +105 DraftKings | PointsBet
Lexi Thompson (Top 10) +160 PointsBet
Lydia Ko (Top 5) +230 DraftKings
Brooke Henderson (Top 5 | Top 10) +300 | +140 DraftKings
 Sei Young Kim (Top 10) +300 PointsBet
Jessica Korda (Top 5 | Top 10) +550 | +250 PointsBet

Analysis

Korda speaks for herself. There’s no need for an explanation as to why I’ve landed on her for both Top 5 and Top 10 in the tournament.

I was all about Lexi Thompson at the U.S. Women’s Open and felt like we had something going after her solid opening round. However, the American just couldn’t get things to fall with the putter and settled for a few T20 showing. However, Thompson might have less focus than normal at the major, as we learned her ailing grandmother passed ahead of Sunday’s final round.

That said, she rebounded with a T5 effort last week at the Meijer and could be sitting on a huge performance.

And like Thompson, Ko is due for more major success and will be there come Sunday at Congressional.

We obviously love Henderson and how she looks, but we also have our eyes on Sei Young Kim. The 2020 champion wound up T12 a year ago and just one shot out of the top 10. She was winless on tour last season, snapping a six-year run of winning at least once. Maybe she can find her mojo at Congressional.

Rounding out of our plays is Jessica Korda, who’s Nelly’s older sister. The world No. 14 has six career tour wins, but has never won a major. However, she has been playing some good golf, with a solo second at The Chevron and T5 last week at the Meijer. She was T15 at this event last year, so I think the veteran could be primed for a strong showing.

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Our 6 FRL Best Bets

ODDS
Nelly Korda +2000 | Caesars
Minjee Lee +3000 | DraftKings
Jessica Korda +4000 | Caesars
Xiyu Lin +4500 | Caesars
Lilia Vu +7500 | Caesars
Anna Nordqvist +8000 | DraftKings

Analysis

The heat and humidity were issues at the U.S. Women’s Open.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the projected forecast for Bethesda, Md. from the National Weather Service looks decent for Thursday’s opening round. However, things are going to heat up as we move through the weekend (see below graphic), with light winds coming in at 10 miles per hour or less at Congressional.

*Graphic courtesy of weather.gov

For those reasons, I’m not finding anyone having any real advantage when it comes to the AM/PM or PM/AM tee times for the first two rounds. I think it’s going to play fairly even, so we’re targeting players in solid form with past success at this major championship.

And she might be +8000, but Anna Nordqvist came flying out of the gates with a 5-under 67 in the opening round of the U.S. Women’s Open. Last week, she fired a 7-under 65 at the Meijer, so I think we’re getting a very live FRL longshot in the three-time major champion.

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Our 6 Live Longshots

Odds BEST BOOK
Jessica Korda +3000 Caesars
Hannah Green +3500 Caesars
Xiyu Lin +3500 BetMGM
Inbee Park +4000 PointsBet
Jennifer Kupcho +4000 BetMGM
Sei Young Kim +6600 PointsBet

Analysis

We’ve pinpointed six players who are live at long odds, but the one who really sticks out when looking at form and value is Kupcho. I mean, why in the world are we getting +4000 on the American who has two wins this season, including a major triumph at The Chevron back in March.

Kupcho, who’s ranked No. 9 in the world, is sitting third overall in the Race to CME Globe standings behind Nelly Korda and Lydia Ko. She’s also within striking distance of Minjee Lee in the Rolex Player of the Year standings.

We also like Jessica Korda and Hannah Green — the 2019 event champion — at these odds, as well as Xiyu Lin (T9 at the KPMG a year ago). All three are due for a win, especially Lin. The Chinese standout is a model of consistency, having not missed a cut in 11 events this season and finishing T17 or better in eight of those events.

Throw in Park and her three at this major and Kim at long +6600 odds, and we like this group of outside contenders.


The Pick

Six years ago, Henderson captured the Women’s PGA Championship at Sahalee, which she said forever changed her life on and off the golf course.

Since that monumental performance, she has been chasing that coveted second major crown and I think this is the spot she secures No. 2 for her trophy cabinet. Henderson is giving us better value than the likes of Nelly Korda and Minjee Lee in the betting market, so I’m making the Canadian my top pick.

It wouldn’t surprise me whatsoever if Henderson and Nelly Korda are duking it out in the final pairing on Sunday’s back nine.

As for the longshots I’ve mentioned, I can’t get over the numbers we’re getting on Kupcho and Park. When it comes to the latter, I don’t know if you leave her off your card even if she isn’t at the top of her game (T3-T16-T15-Cut in her last four events) at her current odds.

However, Henderson is due to another shining moment and is my featured selection heading into what should be an exciting event at Congressional.

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Arizona Sets State Betting Handle Record in March

colorado vs. arizona-odds-preview-prediction-pac 12-january 13

Arizona sports betting continues to be among the leaders in online gaming in 2022.

The Grand Canyon State brought in almost $691 million in sports betting revenue in March, according to statistics from the Arizona Department of Gaming. Arizona surpassed its previous high mark which was set in January 2022 by almost $127 million.

The three sportsbooks that led the way were DraftKings, FanDuel and BetMGM, which generated a combined $551.4 million in March alone. The three books generated 79.4% of the total revenue.

Here are the individual earnings for each of the top three books:

  1. DraftKings = $230.2 million
  2. FanDuel = $187.5 million
  3. BetMGM = $133.7 million

Since legal online sports betting launched in September 2021, all three books have led the way for sports betting in Arizona. That is expected to continue as the books look to create more partnerships with teams and casinos in the state.

FanDuel may have an upper hand long term, as they generated almost $3 million from their existing partnership with the Footprint Center, which is home to the Phoenix Suns.

What to Expect From the Major AZ Sportsbooks Moving Forward

Since most professional sports leagues are in their offseason or wrapping up soon, baseball is the only major professional league with games being played until September, when the 2022 NFL season begins.

The Arizona Cardinals will offer a new BetMGM Sportsbook at State Farm Stadium this upcoming season. This addition will mark the first sportsbook to open a retail location at an NFL stadium.

Caesars has an existing partnership with Chase Field, which is home to the Arizona Diamondbacks.

TPC Scottsdale, which is operated by the PGA Tour, will open a retail sportsbook with DraftKings within the next two years.

Wednesday MLB Props Odds, Picks: 2 Bets for Carlos Rodon & Triston McKenzie (June 22)

mlb-odds-player props-betting-carlos rodon-triston mckenzie-june 22

Our Action Network’s MLB Player Props team is now on a 17-4 run over the past few weeks. After a poor-variance month of April, the breaks are falling our way again.

Here are two more pitchers worth betting in the strikeout market Wednesday.

Our Action Labs Props Tool grades each prop on a scale from 1-10, and I’ll be sure to include the grade for each of my betting recommendations in my discussions below.

Carlos Rodon Under 7.5 Strikeouts (-115)

Orioles @ Cardinals
First Pitch 7:20 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

I have now successfully faded Carlos Rodon three straight times in this column, and I’m ready to do it again.

When I see Rodon’s name pop up on the Action Network App, the first thing I see is this:

He’s coming off of two incredibly strong starts. He threw six shutout innings against the Dodgers and then six more shutout innings against the Pirates. Moreover, he struck out eight in each contest.

But over the past 30 days and against southpaws, Pittsburgh has the highest strikeout rate in MLB, while the Dodgers have the 13th-highest. Both also rank in the back half of the league in wRC+ against that side.

Rodon has shown vulnerability to righty-heavy lineups that mash left-handed pitching — the Cardinals (8 ER over 3 2/3 innings) and the Reds (3 ER and 7 H over 5 1/3 innings) come to mind.

The Braves have seven righties in the lineup, and with the exception of Marcell Ozuna and Orlando Arcia, they all have standard platoon splits with massive success against left-handed pitching.

Here’s how those five have performed against LHPs this season:

  • Ronald Acuña Jr.: 193 wRC+
  • Dansby Swanson: 155 wRC+
  • Austin Riley: 175 wRC+
  • Travis d’Arnaud: 167 wRC+
  • Adam Duvall: 151 wRC+

Put it all together, and the Braves have posted the third-highest wRC+ against southpaws in MLB this year (126). And while they’ve been strikeout prone this season, they combine the fifth-lowest strikeout rate (18.2%) against the left side with the second-highest wRC+ (159) over the past month.

Our Action Labs Payer Props Tool projects Rodon for only 6.9 strikeouts today, while FanGraphs SaberSim projections mark him closer to 6.6.

I absolutely love this under, and I’m considering the Braves ML as well.

Pick: Under 7.5 Ks (-115)

Action Labs Grade: 8/10

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Triston McKenzie Over 5.5 Strikeouts (+130)

Guardians @ Twins
First Pitch 7:40 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

I was honestly hoping we’d see a 4.5 pop across the market for Triston McKenzie. But considering we’re playing his 5.5 at solid plus-money odds, I think this is a good value play to add to your Wednesday card.

McKenzie has cashed this number in three of his past four starts and in 7 of his 12 this season. That 58% hit rate should imply -140 odds to the over.

While Minnesota has been crushing right-handed pitching, the Twins also have posted the ninth-highest strikeout rate against that side over the past 30 days (23.7%).

McKenzie failed to cash over 5.5 against Minnesota in his last start, but he struck out 8 Twins over three starts last season. And in those three starts, he managed just 72, 83 and 72 pitches, respectively.

While McKenzie isn’t the most prolific strikeout pitcher, he eats up innings. He’s pitched a whopping 70 innings over just 11 starts this season, meaning he manages about 6 1/3 per start on average. That places him among the league’s better starters in that category.

Considering our Action Network Player Props Tool projects McKenzie for 6.4 strikeouts today, it’s very much worth playing the over in this spot. As long as he eats up the expected innings and the Twins continue to be strike out, there’s a good chance McKenzie punches out six today.

Pick: Over 5.5 Ks (+130)

Action Labs Grade: 10/10

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North Carolina Nearing Finish Line for Online Sports Betting

north-carolina-nearing-online-sports-betting-finish-line

North Carolina could pass online sports betting any time this week.

Both the House Finance and House Rules Committees approved two bills (S.B. 688, S.B. 38) Wednesday that would authorize up to 12 sports betting apps throughout North Carolina, where only in-person betting is currently allowed.

After gathering dust all year, each bill has cleared three committees in the past 24-hours — setting them up for final passage at any time. Online sports betting could start no earlier than January 1, 2023.

The full-House is slated to take up S.B. 688 during its Wednesday evening meeting.

Tandem of Bills Steps From Passage

The product of behind-the-scenes negotiations, S.B. 38 was gutted and replaced Tuesday to up the tax rate in S.B. 688 from 8% to 14% and to make a few other changes. Advancing them in tandem should help the General Assembly meet the June 30th deadline to get something to Gov. Roy Cooper.

“We had no idea that we’d get hung up on budget related conversations that caused delays,” bill sponsor Sen. Jim Perry said during the Rules Committee hearing. “That’s why both bills are running at the same time.”

S.B. 688 passed the Senate last year and just needs a House vote, while S.B. 38 needs House and Senate approval before it can be sent to Cooper.

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Amendments Incoming

There will be at least one amendment offered during the House vote.

Rules Rep. Destin Hall allowed his colleagues to take up only one amendment to S.B. 38 during their hearing and told interested lawmakers to hold their proposed changes for later.

The amendment, passed unanimously, shortens the time in which sportsbooks can deduct revenue tied to promotional credits from their taxable income from five to three years.

Earlier Wednesday, the Finance committee passed a few more amendments, that mostly change where revenue is distributed under the larger tax:

  • 10% of revenue to Historically Black colleges and universities, athletic programs at UNC-Pembroke and UNC-Asheville
  • 30% of revenue to attract sporting events with high economic impact potential for the state
  • $2 million for problem gambling services

College Betting, Tax Structure May Change

During Tuesday’s hearing in the Judiciary committee, Rep. Pricey Harrison took issue with the tax structure, as well as an amendment she had hoped would prohibit wagers on college sports.

Under that amendment only Olympic betting is banned. Harrison did not respond to Action Network’s request for comment, though she’s expected to propose a college betting ban during the House vote.

She or another lawmaker may also introduce an amendment that further addresses the tax structure. Under S.B. 38 sportsbooks would pay a 14% tax though they’d be afforded deductions not only for promotional credits, but for deposits tied to promotions.

That language hasn’t popped up in any other state and it’s unclear what definition would be used to determine when a bettor’s deposits is tied to a promotion.

Cooper is expected to sign S.B. 38 should it reach his desk.

Tigers vs. Red Sox MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Bet on Tarik Skubal and Detroit to Bounce Back in First Five (Wednesday, June 22)

mlb-odds-picks-betting-predictions-detroit tigers-vs-boston red sox-pitcher-tarik skubal-wednesday-june 22-2022

Tigers vs. Red Sox Odds

Tigers Odds +120
Red Sox Odds -140
Over/Under 8 (-105 / -115)
Time 7:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Boston Red Sox have been red-hot in June and can close out a series sweep against the lowly Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night.

Boston will send Michael Wacha to the mound, while the Tigers match with Tarik Skubal. Detroit’s young ace has struggled in his most recent appearances and will be motivated to right the ship against the Red Sox.

Can Skubal control the Boston bats and avoid a series sweep, or will Boston continue to roll at Fenway Park?

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Detroit Tigers

Few players have made a bigger leap in 2022 than Tarik Skubal has.

Last season, the 25-year-old was barreled nearly 14% of the time, and his .508 Expected Slugging Percentage (xSLG) ranked in the bottom 4% of MLB. Skubal had a 5.58 Expected ERA (xERA) and was ineffective, to say the least.

Those previous struggles notwithstanding, this season has been a completely different story for Skubal. His barrel rate has declined from 13.9% to 5.4%, and his walk rate has also improved from 7.4% to 4.7% year over year. On top of that, the southpaw is forcing ground balls at a markedly higher rate (48.5%) — a 9.2% year-over-year increase — and has improved across the board analytically.

Rather than relying on his fastball, which he threw 43% of the time during the 2021 season, Skubal has turned to his slider and sinker much more frequently. His arsenal includes five pitches, the most effective of which is his changeup (52.2% whiff percentage).

In fact, given the magnitude and breadth of Skubal’s holistic improvement, he arguably has underperformed despite a 3.13 ERA this season.

Skubal’s xERA is down at 2.94, and his FIP (2.48) is even lower. Opposing batters are hitting at an unsustainable rate (.315 batting average) on balls in play compared to his .238 Expected Batting Average (xBA).

Granted, Skubal has struggled in each of his last two starts, conceding nine total runs in as many innings. Nevertheless, I think he should bounce back against Boston on Wednesday night.

Skubal has really settled into his role atop the Tigers rotation and has been the team’s best starter — it’s not particularly close, either.

Boston Red Sox

Michael Wacha ranks near the top of my list as a premier fade candidate in MLB.

Take a look at his 2.27 ERA, and you’d think the right-hander made some sort of change when he joined Boston and has reverted back to his early Cardinals days. But, you’d be wrong.

Wacha has been one of the most fortunate pitchers in baseball. His 4.25 xERA and 4.23 Expected Field Independent Pitching (xFIP) are nearly two full runs higher than his actual ERA. Furthermore, Wacha’s walk rate is up, and he has stranded 84% of runners on base, the latter of which is particularly unsustainable.

Despite Wacha’s .270 xBA, opponents are hitting just .224 on balls in play. To Wacha’s credit, he has been barreled significantly less frequently, but he has also been remarkably fortunate when it comes to damage control.

All this to say — Wacha has over-performed across the board — especially when compared to his career averages and expected indicators. He should be hit with a swift gust of negative regression in the coming weeks.

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Tigers vs. Red Sox Pick

It is often difficult to bet the Detroit Tigers, but I think Wednesday night is the right time to do it.

Detroit’s offense is dead-last in runs per game (2.88), wRC+ (76) and isolated power (.101). The Tigers have been woefully ineffective; as a result, betting overs or the Tigers on the moneyline can be a harrowing experience.

Yet, despite those concerns, Wacha’s expected indicators are too egregious to ignore. He has been incredibly fortunate to avoid being hit harder, and I believe that Detroit is capable of scratching a couple runs against the 30-year-old.

Tack on the fact that Wacha lines up against Skubal — a pitcher who I am incredibly high on — and I think the Tigers hold some value at plus money.

The edge on the mound is significant, and so I’m betting Skubal and Detroit on the first five moneyline in this matchup.

Back Skubal to rebound from disappointing performances in his last two starts en route to a Tigers first-half win.

Pick: Tigers F5 ML (+110) · Play to -105

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MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Our 5 Best Bets, Featuring Orioles vs. Nationals, Rays vs. Yankees (Wednesday, June 22)

mlb-odds-best bets-picks-yankees vs. rays-giants vs. braves-orioles vs. nationals-phillies vs. rangers-june 22

Wednesday’s MLB slate is packed, with 15 games taking place from the afternoon all the way through the late night.

Our staff is taking full advantage, coming through with five best bets for Wednesday, including Phillies vs. Rangers, Nationals vs. Orioles, Yankees vs. Rays and Giants vs. Braves.

Check out all five of our staff’s top picks for Wednesday’s games below — and be sure to check back tomorrow for more action.

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MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Phillies vs. Rangers
4:05 p.m. ET
Nationals vs. Orioles
7:05 p.m. ET
Nationals vs. Orioles
7:05 p.m. ET
Yankees vs. Rays
7:10 p.m. ET
Giants vs. Braves
7:20 p.m. ET

Phillies vs. Rangers

Pick
Phillies ML -135
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Zack Wheeler vs. Jon Gray
First Pitch
4:05 p.m. ET

Jules Posner: The Phillies look to split the short two-game series against the Rangers Wednesday evening.

Zack Wheeler seems to be back at full strength, and he’s starting to pitch much better on the road after a rocky start in away games. He’s given up two or fewer earned runs in his last three road starts, and his road FIP is down to 2.88, which outperforms his 4.50 road ERA.

On the other side, the Phillies offense has been pretty solid, posting a 100 team wRC+ against right-handed pitching on the road over the past few weeks.

Jon Gray is also settling in as a Ranger, and his home FIP is 1.70 — almost two full runs better than his ERA. However, the Rangers offense owns a 94 team wRC+ at home against RHP over the past few weeks, and with Wheeler on the mound, runs will be hard to come by.

If Bryce Harper is healthy enough to return to the lineup, that would also a huge factor. The Phillies moneyline is around -145 right now, and if it remains there or moves to -150, it should still be a solid play.

The Phillies have been playing well as of late, and favorites are performing well this season in general. We might as well tail that.

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Nationals vs. Orioles

Pick
Orioles F5 ML -145
Book
BetMGM
Pitchers
Patrick Corbin vs. Tyler Wells
First Pitch
7:05 p.m. ET

Sean Zerillo: Despite a low strikeout rate, Tyler Wells has excelled in the rotation for the Orioles (3.62 ERA, 3.65 xERA, 4.71 xFIP, 4.72 SIERA) while limiting hard contact. And I suspect that the latter indicators (xFIP and SIERA) are underestimating his actual talent level.

The righty generates more pop-ups than any other pitcher (min. 50 innings pitched) in baseball (18.4%), so he creates a ton of unproductive outs for opposing offenses despite the lack of strikeouts.

Moreover, Wells limits free passes (5% walk rate; 19th amongst 112 qualified pitchers), so opponents need to string multiple hits together to score runs against him.

Conversely, Patrick Corbin has fallen on hard times in his fourth year in Washington. His strikeout minus walk rate or K-BB% (9%) is at the lowest mark of his career, along with both his whiff rate (9.1%) and his chase rate (30.1%).

A .363 BABIP (.313 career) and a 59% strand rate (72.2% career) suggest that Corbin may be due for some positive regression moving forward. However, Corbin’s xERA (6.32) isn’t far off from his actual mark (6.59), as he has allowed more hard contact than all but two pitchers (Yusei Kikuchi and Nathan Eovaldi).

I projected the Orioles as -167 favorites (62.5%) for the first five innings of Wednesday’s contest. You can bet that line up to -153 (60.5% implied) at a 2% edge compared to that projection.

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Nationals vs. Orioles

Pick
Ryan Mountcastle Over 1.5 Bases (+100)
Book
bet365
Pitchers
Patrick Corbin vs. Tyler Wells
First Pitch
7:05 p.m. ET

Nicholas Martin: Patrick Corbin has been arguably the worst starter in baseball this season, and his shocking numbers get worse on the road, where he has pitched to an ERA of 7.47.

Corbin’s analytical profile suggests these dreadful results should continue. It’s unlikely he would still be in the rotation on any team other than the Nationals.

Behind Corbin, the Nationals boast a dreadful bullpen, which has struggled to an ERA of 4.73 in the month of June.

Baltimore has hit to better splits against left-handed pitching this season with a 93 wRC+ and .298 woba.

Ryan Mountcastle, in particular, has hit left-handed pitching effectively this season with a .288 average so far. That’s not surprising, as his 27 barrelled balls versus left-handed pitching since the start of 2021 ties for 12th in the league.

Over the last 14 days, Mountcastle has slugged .800 versus lefties and should prove to be a very tough target for Corbin.

I see value for Mountcastle to hit for over 1.5 bases in this matchup at +100, especially as the Orioles should be able to turn the lineup over often. I would play this prop down to -110.

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Yankees vs. Rays

Pick
Over 7
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Jordan Montgomery vs. Shane Baz
First Pitch
7:10 p.m. ET

DJ James: Shane Baz, the top prospect for the Rays will throw against Jordan Montgomery and the Yankees on Wednesday.

Baz has pitched just twice this season. He exited one after only 2 1/3 innings of work against the Twins and tossed six strong shutout innings against the Orioles in the other.

To make a long story short: He could be volatile going up against the Yankees and the No. 1 offense against right-handers in June (158 wRC+).

Montgomery is one of the most consistent arms on the Yankees. However, he’s punching above his weight with a 2.73 ERA and 3.83 xERA. He will give up a few runs, especially when facing the Rays lineup.

The Rays have a team .346 OBP off of southpaws in June, as well as a team 124 wRC+. Since the Yankees and the Rays have both experienced some up-and-down bullpen performances, seven total runs is far too low for the abilities of these offenses against these starting pitchers.

Baz could very well become the ace the Rays expect, but the Yankees will tag him for a few early. The same should be said about Montgomery. Take the over 7 (-115), and play to 8 (-110).


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Giants vs. Braves

Pick
Giants ML +125
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Carlos Rodon vs. Charlie Morton
First Pitch
7:20 p.m. ET

Anthony Dabbundo: Charlie Morton looked like vintage Morton on Friday against Chicago when he struck out nine Cubs in seven scoreless innings. His strikeout numbers have made a clear recovery in recent weeks, but the veteran right-hander is still struggling with allowing hard contact this year.

Hitters are barreling him more, hitting more balls in the air, and the results have been suboptimal for Morton’s batted ball profile. Morton has lived in the 40s in his ground-ball rate each of the last three seasons, but that number has dipped to 37.5% this season.

His barrel rate is below average for the first time in the Statcast era, and his 4.45 xERA is a full run higher than the last two seasons.

Morton’s Stuff+ rating has dropped off marginally this year as he’s getting fewer outs with his best pitch, the curveball. His xwOBA allowed on the breaking ball went from .180 last season to .342 this year. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle, but hitters are clearly reading it more this season.

At this point in their careers, Carlos Rodon is the considerably better pitcher. His Stuff+ rating is higher, and his slider is dominant.

Take out his one blow-up against the Cardinals — who are elite against lefties — and Rodon has allowed two or fewer runs in 11 of his 12 starts. Only the Reds, who scored three on him, and the Cardinals, who scored eight, have tagged him considerably.

Atlanta has been dominant against lefties this season (126 wRC+), but I’m a bit skeptical of the predictiveness split given how much it struggled against them in 2021 (93 wRC+) and 2020 (100 wRC+).

Odds are it’s just statistical noise, and the Braves will only be league average against lefties going forward. I’d play San Francisco at +110 or better.

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Avalanche vs. Lightning Odds, Picks: 2 Bets for Stanley Cup Final Game 4

Stanley Cup Final Game 4: Avalanche vs. Lightning Odds

Avalanche Odds -105
Lightning Odds -115
Over/Under 6 (+105 / -125)
Time 8 p.m. ET
TV ABC / ESPN+
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Tampa Bay Lightning used their home ice to its full advantage in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final, cutting the Colorado Avalanche‘s series lead to 2-1. Now, they can turn the final into a best-of-three series with another win in their friendly confines.

Offense has been a common theme in the final, with all three games going over the total. However, both teams have played a stifling brand of defense that lends itself to a low-scoring game.

Let’s dive into the matchup and find some betting value in Avalanche vs. Lightning Game 4.

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Colorado Avalanche

Nobody has been able to reign in the Avalanche this postseason. The Western Conference Champions are averaging 4.6 goals per game en route to a 14-3 record. In doing so, the Avs have elevated their scoring metrics beyond sustainable levels, putting themselves at risk of regression over the coming games.

The Avalanche ended the regular season with an 8.9% shooting percentage at five-on-five, increasing to 10.7% across all strengths. So far this postseason, those metrics have been elevated to 9.7% and 11.5%, respectively. Colorado was held to two goals on Monday, which came on the man advantage. That was the sixth straight game in which the Lightning held their opponents to zero goals at five-on-five, a span that includes just seven goals against.

That brings into focus another trend we’ve caught onto from the Avs. Colorado has executed their powerplay flawlessly this season, operating one of the most efficient units in the league. However, as powerplay opportunities dry up, so too do their scoring chances.

A more disciplined effort from the Lightning would prevent the Avalanche from having the additional scoring opportunities they rely heavily on.


Tampa Bay Lightning

As noted, scoring has been hard to come by at the Amalie Arena this postseason. Improved team defense and Andrei Vasilevskiy are two factors shifting the balance in Tampa Bay’s favor, and we’re expecting both to be an emphasis in Game 4.

The Lightning have stymied opponents at home, limiting guests to six or fewer high-danger chances in six of nine home games. They aren’t making scoring chances any easier to create, holding opponents to 18 or fewer in five of nine.

That correlates with improved play from Vasilevskiy, who has allowed just six goals at five-on-five at home this postseason, resulting in a 97.2% save percentage. He’s been equally impressive stopping shots across all strengths, posting a 94.7% save percentage.

Scoring hasn’t flowed naturally for the two-time defending champions, but we have seen them deploy a more effective offense at home. Tampa’s scoring jumps to 3.9 goals per game at home, compared to just 2.4 as the visitors.

It’s evident that the Lightning rely on line matching to hamper their opponents’ scoring and get their skilled group out under more ideal circumstances. That should help them again on Wednesday night.

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Avalanche vs. Lightning Pick

Although we can’t dismiss the importance of Tampa Bay’s defensive structure, nobody has been able to solve Vasilevskiy at home. Colorado was limited to two goals on Monday night, and further correction could be expected as their shooting percentages fall back to average.

Along with the Bolts’ line matching at home, we’re anticipating goals coming at a premium tonight. That plays right into the Lightning’s MO at home, leaving an advantage in backing them on the moneyline.

Pick: Lightning Moneyline (-110) | Under 6 (-115)

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Avalanche vs. Lightning Odds & Picks: Our Best Bets for Game 4 of Stanley Cup Finals, Featuring a Nathan MacKinnon Player Prop

nhl-odds-picks-predictions-best bets-avalanche vs. lightning-stanley cup-game 4-june 22

NHL betting analyst Nicholas Martin has found three plays ahead of Wednesday’s pivotal Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals between the Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning.

From moneyline plays to player props, check out all three of his top bets for Game 4 below.

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Colorado Avalanche ML · -105 (Play to -110)

The Avalanche can be found at as high as -105 to take this contest, and we have some strong value backing the Avalanche to bounce back in this spot. I feel Colorado should still be favored.

The Avalanche clearly did not play their sharpest contest in the Game 3 loss, but with that said, the 6-2 final scoreline doesn’t convey the Avs’ overall play.

Obviously, Colorado will always need to control more of the overall play to find success considering the disparity in goaltending between Darcy Kuemper and Andrei Vasilevskiy, but I believe we’ll see the Avalanche do exactly that tonight.

Nazem Kadri was a full participant in the morning skate, and based on the fact that Nicolas Aube-Kubel remained out with the extras afterward, it’ quite likely Kadri will return.

If Kadri can play at anywhere near the level we saw prior to his injury, that will be a gigantic boost for Colorado. It could go a long way in helping shore up 5-on-5 play behind the MacKinnon line, which has still been dominant even if the puck hasn’t gone in yet.

Nikita Kucherov was injured late in Game 3 as well, and while he’s most likely going to play in this game, it would a significant loss for the Lightning if he can’t play to his full ability.

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Nathan MacKinnon Anytime Goalscorer · +164 (Play to +155)

Scoring on Vasilevskiy and the Bolts at home has proven to be very tough this postseason, but the same could be said for shutting down Colorado’s ridiculously strong top-unit.

Based on the gameplay in Game 3, it was somewhat of a fluke the trio didn’t find the scoresheet. I believe they will tonight.

MacKinnon has yet to break through with a goal in the opening three contests of this Cup final, but it has been quite clear how involved he and the Avalanche’s top line has been.

In Game 3, MacKinnon generated a ridiculous 1.42 expected goals by himself off 13 shot attempts, and he now leads the series with 19 scoring chances in three games.

The slump is clearly getting to MacKinnon a little bit, and it was far from surprising to see that he spent extra time after practice yesterday working on releasing shots through a stick-check considering his otherworldly work ethic.

However, with his ridiculous skill set and the way Colorado has controlled play with him on the ice, it’s only a matter of time before he nets one in this series.

Playing MacKinnon to go over 4.5 shots could be reasonable as well, but I like backing him to find what will likely be a crucial goal at a long number tonight.

Valeri Nichushkin Over 0.5 Points · -140 (Play to -145)

Nichushkin has been brilliant all season and serves as another reason why Colorado’s clearly skating the deepest and most talented roster in hockey.

MacKinnon, Nichushkin and Gabriel Landeskog played to a 75.1% expected goals rate in Game 3 after a hard-to-believe 100% xGF rate in Game 2 and a 71% mark in Game 1.

Considering the number of attempts on goal Colorado has generated with Nichushkin on the ice, it’s far from surprising to see he has managed four points in the opening two games of this series.

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Yankees vs. Rays Betting Odds & Picks: Value on Wednesday’s Favorite

Yankees vs. Rays Odds

Yankees Odds -156
Rays Odds +132
Over/Under 7 (-115 / -105)
Time 7:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Tampa Bay Rays proved on Tuesday night that they’re one of the few teams in the league capable of consistently giving the New York Yankees fits this season, and they’ll be out for a series win in Wednesday’s rubber match.

With Shane Baz finding his form, is this line fair to the Rays? Are the Yankees well-positioned to win yet again, this time as a short favorite? Let’s answer those questions below.

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Yankees’ Offense, Pitching Still Humming

The Yankees continue to hit, and they continue to win. They’ve dropped just 18 games through 68 game to this point in the season. They’re 6-3 against the Rays, which is hardly bad at roughly 66%, but somehow considerably worse than their season-long winning percentage of 73.5%.

I say all of that because the Yankees and Rays just seem to play close games. Along the same lines, six of the nine games they’ve played have gone under the total, with Tuesday’s game just sneaking over on what proved to be an inconsequential homer by Marwin Gonzalez late. We already know the drill with the Yankees offense, ranking third in wRC+ in the last two weeks and first in barrels per plate appearance for the season.

Let’s turn to pitcher Jordan Montgomery, who has been pretty great this season. He stands at 3-1 with a 2.72 ERA, and while his 3.84 xERA isn’t the best, you could do much worse. He’s also sporting a 34.4% hard-hit rate with a whiff rate in the top 20% of the league despite a measly 19.4% strikeout rate.


Rays Slipping On Offense in Recent Games

Shane Baz is the total opposite of Montgomery, starting with his right-handedness and his pitching style. A highly-regarded prospect who debuted a year ago to much fanfare, Baz has now fully come back from injury in 2022.

His first start, against the Twins, was a pretty brutal one where he allowed five earned runs over 2 2/3 innings with a home run and three walks, but his second — against Baltimore — was much better. There, he yielded just two hits over six scoreless frames with seven strikeouts.

While we know Baz to be a great swing-and-miss pitcher with a career 32.9% strikeout rate, we hardly know much else about him. He’s made just five starts at the major-league level, spanning 21 2/3 innings. He had two pretty good starts last year against the Jays and Marlins and then he lasted just 2 2/3 against the Yankees in October.

As an offense, the Rays have failed to make consistent contact of late. They’re 14th when it comes to swinging strike rate in the last two weeks and just 26th in Barrel Rate — which is where they are for the season. They’ve also struggled a bit against lefties this year, ranking 14th in wRC+.

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Yankees-Rays Pick

The Rays have had issues against lefties all season and they’ve had issues with swinging strikes lately. While it doesn’t seem as if Montgomery is a pitcher who is going to get whiffs due to his below-average strikeout rate, his top-20% whiff rate would tell a different story.

I expect Tampa Bay to struggle here offensively, and with that it’s very hard for me to get excited about this team. I like Baz, and he may even win a Cy Young Award one day. I also know he wasn’t sharp the last time he faced the Yankees and that we’ve only seen five starts out of him.

Throw in the fact that two of his three good outings were against bad teams, and that’s enough to convince me of the Yankees at a discount.

Pick: Yankees ML (-144)

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MLB Odds & Picks for Nationals vs. Orioles: Why to Bet a Ryan Mountcastle Over

Nationals vs. Orioles Odds

Nationals Odds +130
Orioles Odds -155
Over/Under 9 (-105 / -115)
Time 7:05 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Erick Fedde and the Washington Nationals bullpen combined for a 3-0 shutout in the series opener Tuesday Night.

A similar result Wednesday could be quite surprising however as the Nationals will send Patrick Corbin to the mound who owns the highest ERA amongst qualified starters of 6.59. The Baltimore Orioles will counter with Tyler Wells, who has pitched to an ERA of 3.62 throughout 59.2 innings this season.

Will Baltimore breakthrough with a big offensive performance in this soft matchup?

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Can the Nationals Overcome Poor Pitching?

Patrick Corbin was among the worst starters in baseball in 2021 with an xERA of 5.62, and the aging veteran has followed that up with a shocking expected mark of 6.34 throughout 69.2 innings in 2022.

His ERA on the road is way up at 7.47, which is the highest mark in the league amongst qualified starters. Right-handed batters are hitting .306 against Corbin since the start of the 2020 season, which is the highest amongst MLB starters with over 140 innings pitched over that time.

That’s an especially concerning mark looking towards the Orioles right-heavy lineup, as Cedric Mullins is essentially the only relevant left-handed bat.

All of Corbin’s underlying numbers suggest he is simply a far below league average pitcher at this point, and opponents xwoba has actually risen over the last 250 PA’s so a turnaround in form may be more unlikely now than ever.

Behind Corbin the Nationals boast a dreadful bullpen, which has struggled to an ERA of 4.73 in the month of June and been a large part of the Nats 7-13 record throughout the month.

The Nationals have been more productive than you might expect considering that record, with a 99 wRC+ and .314 woba, and will likely need a reasonable output to have a chance in this contest.

Orioles Offense Showing Signs of Life

While Baltimore is far from an offensive powerhouse, the order has hit to better splits against left-handed pitching this season with a 93 wRC+ and .298 woba. The Orioles have also been more productive of late, batting to a 102 wRC+ and .302 woba throughout the month of June.

Ryan Mountcastle has been a big part of that productivity, as he has hit .320 over his last 78 PA’s. Mountcastle has hit left-handed pitching effectively this season, with a .288 average so far, and that’s not surprising as his 27 barreled balls versus left-handed pitching since the start of 2021 ties for 12th in the league.

Tyler Wells, with his giant 6-foot-8 frame, offers a lot of upside at age 27, and has more consistently put it all together this season on route to an xERA of 3.66. Wells clearly has some great stuff as evidenced by a stellar QOPA of 5.17, and is certainly someone to watch moving forward for Orioles fans.

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Nationals-Orioles Pick

It seems likely the Orioles should put together a strong output at the plate today against Corbin and the Nationals lowly bullpen, which should allow several opportunities for Mountcastle to do some damage at the plate.

As alluded to above Mountcastle has managed some big numbers altogether of late, and over the last 14 days Mountcastle has slugged .800 versus lefties in specific.

At +100 for Mountcastle to get over 1.5 bases in this matchup I see value, especially as the Orioles should be able to turn the lineup over a higher than average amount, and I would play this prop down to -110.

Pick: Ryan Mountcastle Over 1.5 Total Bases (-105)

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Bettors Favoring Jabari Smith to Be First Pick in 2022 NBA Draft Despite Recent Odds Movement

nba-draft-odds-pick-prediction-how-to-bet-jabari-smith

Jabari Smith hasn’t been the name making headlines over the past few days in the NBA Draft rumor mill, but he’s quietly become the public’s pick to go first overall.

Paolo Banchero has been the talk of the draft in recent days, as his odds to be the first pick in the draft have been chopped from +1600 all the way to +275 at BetMGM. However, Banchero isn’t getting the most action from bettors.

Smith is receiving 33.3% of the betting tickets and 64.6% of the handle at BetMGM, while Banchero has gotten 23.8% of the tickets and 13.3% of the handle.

The Auburn standout’s odds have moved from -105 to -300, despite consistent movement on Banchero’s line.

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Chet Holmgren, the only other player truly in the mix for the first overall pick, has seen his odds go from +145 to +400. He’s amassed 19.5% of the betting tickets and 20.1% of the handle.

Jaden Ivey has earned a solid portion of bets, receiving 9.5% of the tickets, but he accounts for just 1.1% of the handle. His odds have moved from +5000 to +20000.

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The NBA Draft is set to take place on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET and can be watched on ABC or ESPN. If you’re looking for up-to-date announcements, however, your best bet is probably Twitter.

Full first pick odds across BetMGM, FanDuel and PointsBet can be found below.

Player BetMGM FanDuel PointsBet
Jabari Smith -300 -290 -276
Paolo Banchero +275 +270 +270
Chet Holmgren +400 +420 +500

MLB Betting Odds, Breakdown: Our Expert’s Top Picks for Wednesday, Featuring Giants vs. Braves

mlb-odds-picks-predictions-expert-betting-orioles vs. nationals-tigers vs. red sox-yankees vs. rays-giants vs. braves-june 22

All 30 teams in Major League Baseball take the field Wednesday in a full 15-game card. There are a handful of games to provide some afternoon action, but 11 of the games on Wednesday begin at 6:40 p.m. ET or later.

You can find my colleague Sean Zerillo’s projections for every MLB game in the Action Network App (on both the PRO Projections tab and the game pages) and our Projections Hub (which you should bookmark).


Follow all of Anthony Dabbundo’s bets in the Action Network app! Click here.


Here are some of my favorite angles and games I’m targeting across Wednesday’s evening MLB card.

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Nationals at Orioles, 6:40 p.m. ET

The Beltway Series concludes on Wednesday night with the second of two games, as Patrick Corbin of Washington takes on Baltimore right-hander Tyler Wells.

I think I’ve bet on Wells in almost every start he’s made this season, and that’s not going to change on Wednesday night.

Wells has displayed excellent command with his 5% walk rate, and his batted ball profile remains above average for MLB pitchers. He’s slightly better than league average in xwOBA, barrel rate and hard-hit rate allowed.

He doesn’t have overpowering strikeout stuff, but he has four usable pitches and above-average spin rates on most of them. He won’t generate a ton of swings and misses but is well above average at getting hitters to chase pitches outside of the zone. Washington is 10th in chase rate, so Wells should be able to induce a bunch of weak contact.

Wells’ xERA sits at 3.66, and I’m pretty confident that he’s a sub 4.00 ERA pitcher at this point in his young career.

I don’t think Corbin, his counterpart, is anywhere near that anymore. Corbin’s fastball is one of the worst in all of baseball this season, per Eno Sarris of The Athletic’s Stuff+ model that judges pitch shapes and velocity.

Corbin’s defense hurt him in his last start with a two-out error, but he still allowed seven runs (all unearned) immediately thereafter.

His slider used to be his most effective pitch, but his whiff rate on that pitch has dropped every year since 2019. His fastball and sinker are both allowing an xwOBA of .438 and .427, respectively.

You’d probably think he was due for some positive regression with a 6.59 ERA, but the underlying metrics haven’t been much better. He’s allowed a barrel rate over 10% and has an xERA of 6.34.

The gulf in quality in the starting pitchers only points me in one direction — Baltimore.

Recommended Bet: Orioles F5 ML -145 (-150 or better)

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Tigers at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET

Tarik Skubal did get roughed up for five runs in five innings in his last start for the Tigers. But the lefty has three established pitches and is arguably the most improved pitcher in baseball in 2022.

At age 25, Skubal has changed his pitch mix to more of a sinker/slider combination. It better hides his mediocre fastball, and the results are impressive.

Hitters had a .429 xwOBA against his fastball last year, a pitch he threw more than half of the time. This season, his fastball usage has dropped to 27.6%. Hitters are seeing it less and hitting it less, too. The xwOBA allowed comes in at .341, and all of his other pitches are sub .300.

His strikeout rate has been stable in each of his three seasons in the big leagues, but he’s cut his walk rate almost in half from 8.2% in 2020 to 4.7% in 2022. The improved control and pitch locations means that he’s getting barreled a lot less, and his xERA has dipped from 5.58 last season to 2.95 this year.

His FIP (2.48) and xFIP (3.02) are also clear indicators that Skubal’s first half of the season is no fluke.

Michael Wacha is an impressive story with his 2.27 ERA currently, but he is a prime regression candidate right now. Wacha has allowed a HR/FB rate below 10% and is stranding 84% of batters while allowing a career-low .224 BABIP.

That’s the triumvirate of concerning regression indicators, which is being picked up in his metrics. Wacha has a 4.25 xERA and 4.23 xFIP, his Stuff+ is below average and his Pitching+ sits right around league average.

His K-BB% is actually lower than it’s been each of the last two seasons, too. As bad as the Detroit lineup is, I’ll be betting the Tigers in the first five innings.

Recommended bet: Tigers F5 ML +120 or better

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Yankees at Rays, 7:10 p.m. ET

Shane Baz steadied himself with six shutout innings against Baltimore after a disappointing first start to the 2022 season against Minnesota.

Of course, Minnesota is a much better lineup than Baltimore, and his matchup with the Yankees will be the toughest test of his young season. But I’m trusting Baz’s stuff here, which is as good as any pitcher in baseball.

When Baz pitched in the big leagues for the first time at the end of last season, it’s important to remember just how good he was.

The sample is too small on Baz in 2022 to meaningfully glean anything from those first two starts. He struggled a bit with command, but I don’t expect that to be a lasting issue.

The price here as a +120 home underdog is surprising. The Rays were just +115 at home with Shane McClanahan pitching against Gerrit Cole. Now, they’re +120 at home with a slightly worse pitcher in Baz but are now facing a considerably worse pitcher in Jordan Montgomery for the Yankees.

Montgomery is a fine middle-of-the-rotation starter with an xERA who has hovered around 4.00 each of the last three seasons. He’s been improved with his command but is also allowing more balls in play this year, and his career-low .245 BABIP is unlikely to persist.

I bet Tampa Bay on Monday and am going to do so again. As Baz stabilizes closer to what his stuff suggests he is, we won’t get this many good numbers on him in the weeks and months to come.

Recommended bet: Rays ML +110 or better

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Giants at Braves, 7:20 p.m. ET

San Francisco and Atlanta have played two thrillers in the first two games of their series after Atlanta walked off on Monday and the Giants won, 12-10, on Tuesday night.

Charlie Morton looked like vintage Morton on Friday against Chicago when he struck out nine Cubs in seven scoreless innings. His strikeout numbers have made a clear recovery in recent weeks, but the veteran right-hander is still struggling with hard contact this year.

Hitters are barreling him more, hitting more balls in the air, and the results have been suboptimal for Morton’s batted ball profile. Morton has lived in the 40s in his ground-ball rate each of the last three seasons, but that number has dipped to 37.5% this season. His barrel rate is below average for the first time in the Statcast era, and his 4.45 xERA is a full run higher than the last two seasons.

Morton’s Stuff+ rating has dropped off marginally this year as he’s getting fewer outs with his best pitch, the curveball. His xwOBA allowed on the breaking ball went from .180 last season to .342 this year. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle, but hitters are clearly reading it more this season.

At this point in their careers, Carlos Rodon is the considerably better pitcher. His Stuff+ rating is higher, and his slider is dominant.

Take out his one blow-up against the Cardinals — who are elite against lefties — and Rodon has allowed two or fewer runs in 11 of his 12 starts. Only the Reds, who scored three on him, and the Cardinals, who scored eight, have tagged him considerably.

Atlanta has been dominant against lefties this season (126 wRC+), but I’m a bit skeptical of the predictiveness split given how much it struggled against them in 2021 (93 wRC+) and 2020 (100 wRC+).

Odds are it’s just statistical noise, and the Braves will only be league average against lefties going forward.

Recommended bets:

  • Giants F5 ML +100 or better
  • Giants ML +110 or better

Anthony Dabbundo’s Bets (June 22)

  • Giants F5 Innings (+100 or better)
  • Giants ML (+110 or better)
  • Rays ML (+110 or better)
  • Tigers F5 Innings (+120 or better)
  • Orioles F5 Innings -145  (-150 or better)
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MLB Odds, Predictions: Betting Algorithm Picks for 4 Games, Including Tigers vs. Red Sox (Wednesday, June 22)

tigers-red-sox-predictions-algorithm-picks-mlb-wednesday-june-22

The Action Network’s proprietary betting models indicate solid value on four MLB games on Wednesday.

The MLB algorithms are operated by our senior writer, Sean Zerillo, and factor in injuries, matchups, conditions and more.

Each edge provides over 4% in betting value, which indicates the pick has implied odds that are more than 4% higher than the odds available to you in the markets.

One of the picks has an edge of roughly 6%.

Over the long run, if you only bet on lines with at least a 4% betting edge, you’re very likely to make a profit. In the short term, of course, variance is a constraint.

Read further to see which line our algorithms are targeting on Wednesday.

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MLB Algorithm Predictions for Wednesday

Odds and betting data last updated at 1 p.m. ET.

The models are rolling with the Royals’ moneyline as the best pick of the night.

The algorithm thinks their moneyline should be closer to +162. Meanwhile, the best price you can get on the market is with Wynn at +210.

That’s a roughly 6% betting edge.

The other picks are the A’s at +115 vs. the Mariners (projected: -103), Phillies vs. Rangers over 7.5, +100 (projected: 8.22 runs should be the total) and Tigers vs. Red Sox over 8 runs, -105 (projected: 8.74 runs should be the total).

Each of those aforementioned picks have more than a 4% betting edge.

PRO Picks: Royals +210 or better | Athletics +115 or better | Phillies vs. Rangers o7.5 (+100) or better | Tigers vs. Red Sox o8 (-105) or better

MLB Odds, Picks for Phillies vs. Rangers: Betting Value on Underdog

mlb-odds-picks-betting-predictions-philadelphia phillies-vs-texas rangers-starting pitcher-jon gray-wednesday-june 22-2022

Phillies vs. Rangers Odds

Phillies Odds -145
Rangers Odds +120
Over/Under 7.5 (-105 / -115)
Time 4:05 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The series opener did not go as planned for Philadelphia, culminating in a 7-0 shutout loss to the Texas Rangers.

Tuesday’s opening matchup revealed a glaring difference between the Phillies’ and Rangers’ respective bullpens. Phillies relief pitcher Jeurys Familia entered the game during the seventh inning and allowed four runs on four hits in one and one-third innings of work.

Contrast Familia’s performance with the collective efforts of Matt Bush, Dennis Santana and Brock Burke for the Texas Rangers. Starting pitcher Martin Perez left the ballgame at the end of the sixth inning, and the trio of Bush, Santana and Burke did not allow a single Phillies baserunner during the last three innings of play.

However, Game 2 may play out very differently with Phillies ace pitcher Zack Wheeler on the mound. Wheeler has been dominant during his last three outings: In 19 combined innings of work, Wheeler has struck out 20 batters and conceded only three total runs en route to three consecutive winning decisions.

Jon Gray will toe the slab for the Rangers, and just like his counterpart, he has been excellent of late. Gray enters with a 2.52 ERA spanning four starts during the month of June. He has allowed seven runs — five of which came in one outing against Cleveland on June 7 — and he has struck out 31 batters in 25 innings of work.

Will this pitchers duel live up to expectation? Or can the Rangers keep the bats hot and roll through Philly’s ace? Let’s dive deeper to find out.

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Expect Gray to Excel With Reverse Splits

In the previous section, I discussed the strength of Jon Gray’s recent performances, which also extends to his dominance against lefties. This season, Gray has limited left-handed hitters to a combined .196 batting average. Accordingly, Gray’s advantage versus lefties suggests that two of the Phillies’ best bats may be in for a long night.

Bryce Harper and Kyle Schwarber are two of MLB’s elite hitters in terms of average exit velocity and hard-hit rate. However, if Gray stifles Harper’s and Schwarber’s offensive impact, then Philly will have big shoes to fill in order to to get on the board. Alec Bohm and Rhys Hoskins are the only other Phillies hitters with above-average exit velocities and hard-hit rates.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Phillies lineup will spend the duration of the evening deciphering Gray’s slider from his fastball. His slider has been his weapon of choice more than 33% of the time, and for good reason: Opposing batters have hit just .188 off Gray’s slider this season.

Still, that is not the only weapon in his pitching arsenal. Gray will throw his slider against both lefties and righties, but with multiple left-handed bats in Philly’s lineup, Gray will also mix in quite a few changeups.

His changeup is a weapon almost exclusively reserved for left-handed hitters. In fact, Gray has only thrown 17 changeups to righties all season. Lefties have done virtually nothing against Gray’s changeup, which has produced a batting average against (BAA) of .077.

Gray may be the underdog, but he draws the better matchup between Wednesday’s two starting pitchers.


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Philadelphia’s Bullpen is Vulnerable

Famila’s most recent outing adds to an ever-growing list of poor performances from the Philadelphia bullpen. The Phillies enter today’s matchup with the seventh-worst bullpen ERA in the majors. Expect the Rangers to do everything they can to get Wheeler out of the game so that they can pounce on Philly’s bullpen.

However, it is no easy task to force Zack Wheeler off the mound. He has become a bulldog since joining the Phillies in 2020. Furthermore, Wheeler has delivered six or more complete innings in eight of his last nine appearances. So, in order for Texas to attack the vulnerable Philadelphia bullpen, it must do one of two things: Either hunt fastballs early in at-bats — or work deep counts.

Texas has not been a very patient lineup this year, as evidenced by the team’s walk rate (2.72) that ranks 27th in MLB. However, the Rangers feature several players who can turn around a fastball. Adolis Garcia, Brad Miller and Nathaniel Lowe each report above-average exit velocities.

Last night, we witnessed how dangerous this Rangers lineup can be. Nevertheless, Texas must pounce on every mistake against Wheeler if it wants to win this game.


Phillies vs. Rangers Pick

Ironically, in a matchup featuring the Phillies’ ace starting pitcher, it is the Rangers who have the edge on the mound. Gray has been tremendous against lefties, and he has the arsenal to contain Philly’s big bats.

On the other side, getting to Wheeler will not be easy, but the Rangers have shown that they can hit the hard stuff. If they work the count a bit, we could see an earlier exit than expected from Wheeler. That, in turn, would put the Phillies even further behind as they get into their bullpen.

Back the Rangers, who are very live dogs here.

Pick: Rangers +125

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Lightning vs. Avalanche Odds & Pick: Sharps Hitting Game 4 of Stanley Cup Final (June 22)

lightning-avalanche-odds-pick-sharps-hitting-game-4-stanley-cup-finals-june-22

Lightning vs. Avalanche Odds

Lightning Odds -110
Avalanche Odds -110
Over/Under 6
Time 8 p.m. ET
TV ABC
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL odds here.

After a pivotal Game 3 saw the Tampa Bay Lightning fight their way back into the Stanley Cup Final against the Colorado Avalanche, they’ll have a chance to even the series on Wednesday night.

The Avs still lead the series, 2-1, but neither team has been able to take a game on the road thus far. Stealing just one game away from home would give the Avalanche a massive boost in their efforts to take home the Cup.

Brayden Point is day-to-day for the Lightning, but Nikita Kucherov is expected to play after suffering a small injury in Game 3.

The Action Network’s proprietary betting data has indicated that there is an edge to be gained by monitoring sharp betting action on Wednesday.

Read on to see which side the sharps are targeting in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final.

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Lightning vs. Avalanche Sharp Betting Report


Sharps are all over the Avalanche to bounce back and take their third game of the series this evening.

Though just 37% of the overall betting tickets are siding with the Avalanche on the moneyline, 80% of the handle is on the Avs. That means there is a 43% differential in tickets to handle, activating our ‘big money’ signal.

Our data has indicated movements on this line that are correlated to sharp action, and with that ticket to handle split it’s no surprise.

Against the spread, 27% of the tickets are on the Avalanche to cover 1.5 goals, but 68% of the money is on that side.

Sharp Action: Avalanche -110

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Justin Thomas Withdraws From Travelers Championship; Betting Odds Change for Favorites

Justin-thomas-withdraws-travelers-championship-betting-odds

The top of the oddsboard will look a little different this week as Justin Thomas became the latest player to withdraw from the Travelers Championship.

Thomas, who was +1200 to win the tournament, cited a back injury as his reason for skipping the event.

With just under a month before the Open Championship, Thomas is one of a few players electing to take the week off following the U.S. Open. Thomas joins Will Zalatoris, Russell Henley, Erik Van Rooyen and Patrick Rodgers as those to officially withdraw.

Bet the Travelers Championship risk-free up to $1,000.

Oh, and Brooks Koepka, who is off to join LIV Golf.

Thomas was quick to quiet any speculation about his future, revealing he tweaked his back earlier in the week and is opting for rest and recovery.

With Thomas out, the odds on co-favorites Rory McIlroy and Scottie Scheffler shortened. Both players dropped from +1000 to +900. Patrick Cantlay (+1400), Sam Burns (+1800) and Xander Schauffele (+2000) remain unchanged.

McIlroy and Scheffler both finished near the top at the U.S. Open. Scheffler fell one stroke short of a playoff with eventual winner Matthew Fitzpatrick. McIlroy finished in a tie for fifth, four strokes behind Fitzpatrick. McIlroy won the Canadian Open the week prior.

The 2021 Travelers Championship was won by Harris English (+4000) in a playoff over longshot Kramer Hickok. English is +10000 this week.

Bubba Watson is a three-time champion of the tournament but will not be teeing it up this week. Other past champions of the event in the field include Chez Reavie, Jordan Spieth, Russell Knox, Kevin Streelman, Marc Leishman and Stewart Cink.

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MLB NRFI Odds, Picks, Predictions: Adam Wainwright, Eric Lauer Have Good Value For Scoreless Opening Inning (Wednesday, June 22)

Shayne Trail breaks down his favorite NRFI/YRFI bet of the day below, but you can follow all of his bets in the Action Network app.


Cardinals vs. Brewers — No Runs First Inning (+100)

Matchup Cardinals (Wainwright) vs. Brewers (Lauer)
First Pitch 8:10 p.m. ET
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On Wednesday, we’re eyeing a matchup in Milwaukee between two NL Central division rivals.

Adam Wainwright in his career has been a dominant NRFI pitcher. With his 7-5 in 2022, he’s now 36-10 since 2021. In that same span, Wainwright is 34-9 to the NRFI when the total is 9.5 or lower. Despite having five NRFI losses, Wainwright is still holding opposing No. 1 and 2 hole hitters below .200 averages so far this season.

Here is how the Brewers hitters have fared against Wainwright in the past:

Christian Yelich: 9-for-34
Willy Adames: 1-for-11
Rowdy Tellez: 3-for-10
Keston Hiura: 4-for-14

Yelich is in midst of a slump, hitting 5-for-28 (.179) over the past seven days. The Brewers have been underperforming in the month of June. Against right-handed pitching, in the first inning, they rank 29th with a .163 average with over 51 plate appearances. This is just a small split as their overall month of June is ranked 28th with a .182 average. This sample size is with over 75 first-inning plate appearances.

On the other side, we have 2022 NRFI standout, Eric Lauer. 10-2 in 2022 paired with a perfect 4-0 home NRFI record. When facing batters for the first time through the order Lauer held teams in check with a .163 average.

Here is how Lauer has done in the past matchups:

Paul Goldschmidt: 1-for-9
Tommy Edman: 2-for-7
Nolan Arenado: 3-for-14
Juan Yepez: 0-for-2

The Cardinals are a completely different NRFI hitting threat on the road compared to at home. Their road-hitting woes have continued into June. In 47 plate appearances on the road, they are hitting for a .136 average good for 27th in the MLB. They also rank 27th in hard contact in the month of June. When they do make contact is not where near significant at only 19.4% of the time.

Look for this 2022 NRFI breakout Eric Lauer to remain perfect at home and for Wainwright to continue his NRFI proficiency. At plus money odds, take the NRFI between the Cardinals and the Brewers.

For all of Shayne Trail’s favorite NRFI/YRFI bets, follow him in the Action Network app.

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2022 Travelers Championship FRL Picks: First-Round Value on Jason Day, Joel Dahmen, More

travelers championship-odds-picks-frl-jason day-joel dahmen-2022

The PGA Tour will head to TPC River Highlands this week to play the 2022 Travelers Championship. 

One of the most fascinating aspects of the Travelers Championship is that any skill set can be successful at TPC River Highlands. In the past, we’ve seen big hitters like Bubba Watson and Dustin Johnson bomb their way to victory, plotters like Chez Reavie and Kevin Knox rely on their strong iron play and golfers like Harris English, who do a little bit of everything. 

There are plenty of ways to get it done at this course, but strong current form approaching the event has been a pretty good indicator in past years. Reavie won in 2019 following his T3 finish at the U.S. Open the week prior, and Harris English did the same in 2021 after his third-place U.S. Open finish. 

TPC River Highlands isn’t an easy course and I don’t expect a “birdie fest,” but we’ve seen golfers go extremely low here in the past.

The course is home to the TOUR’s only round of 58, which was posted by Jim Furyk in 2016. We also saw Patrick Cantlay famously shoot a 60 here as an amateur back in 2011.

Any golfer we target in the first-round leader market must have the capability of going low. 

When looking at past first-round leaders’ starting times at TPC River Highlands, there have been plenty of first-round leaders from both the morning and afternoon tee times. There have been seven leaders or co-leaders who have started in the morning, and 11 leaders or co-leaders who have started in the afternoon.

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2022 Travelers Championship First-Round Leader Bets

Jason Day (+6500)

There’s no denying that Jason Day has been extremely inconsistent throughout the past few years. He’s looked good some weeks and flat-out horrible in others.

However, one thing that we have seen from him this season is his ability to repeat strong performances on courses where he’s had success in the past. TPC River Highlands is one of those courses. 

Last season, the Australian had missed three of his past four cuts heading into the Travelers Championship. Despite his poor form, he managed to finish in 10th place for the week and gained 4.8 strokes from tee to green.

More importantly for the first-round leader market, he showed the ability to shoot an extremely low round at the course.

I was in attendance that day and got a chance to follow him around for a good portion of his round. I saw firsthand how comfortable he felt at the course, which wasn’t a big surprise considering how well he’s played at Pete Dye designs throughout his career.

He shot an 8-under 62 that day, and I believe he’s capable of having a similar round on Thursday. 

Mackenzie Hughes (+6500)

Mackenzie Hughes has already been the first-round leader or co-leader at the Travelers Championship twice in the past three years. In 2020, he was the solo leader after the first round and shot a ridiculous 10-under 60.

This year, the Canadian is heading to TPC River Highlands in solid form. He finished 28th at the RBC Canadian Open and 24th at the U.S. Open.

In 2020, Hughes gained 11.9 strokes with his short game, which will be a useful way to attack this course once again in 2022. 

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Joel Dahmen (+8000)

Joel Dahmen had one of the most impressive performances of any player at last week’s U.S. Open. He gained a whopping 8.0 strokes on approach for the week, which ranked fourth in the star-studded field. 

After his final round was over, Dahmen spoke about how confident he felt in his game at the moment. 

“I can hit it with the best of them,” he said Sunday night. “I learned that, especially on a course like this, where you have to hit it in the fairway and it’s not overly long. I think I was one of the best ball-strikers over the four days. I always knew I needed to kind of clean up the wedges and the putter if I really wanted to do this, and the putter just wasn’t quite there. It wasn’t bad. It just wasn’t good enough to win, especially with the wedges. I kind of impressed myself, I guess, in this situation. I hung in there.”

The 34-year-old now heads to a golf course that should be much more manageable for him to contend on. In his 2020 start at TPC River Highlands, Dahmen shot four rounds in the 60s, highlighting how well the course may suit his game. 

Cameron Davis (+10000)

It’s been a bit surprising to see how well Cameron Davis has played short courses throughout his career considering he hits it a long way off the tee.

Earlier this year, he finished in a tie for third place at the RBC Heritage, which is another short Pete Dye track. He shot a final-round 63 and is the type of golfer who’s capable of posting a low round at any time.

Speaking of Dye-designed courses, the Australian has been excellent on other Dye designs as well, ranking 10th in the field in that department over his past 24 rounds. 

Davis has a 7:15 a.m. tee time and will look to get out of the gates hot. 

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What Michael Rubin Selling Stake in 76ers & Devils Says About Future of Fanatics Sports Betting Operation

Michael-rubin-sells-ownership-stake-76ers-devils-fanatics-sports-betting

How big is Fanatics’ sports gambling operation going to be?

Apparently really big.

We watched as Fanatics made big hires, including FanDuel co-founder Matt King to head up the gambling venture and our own Ari Borod as Chief Commercial Officer. We watched as the number of job postings on the gambling side ballooned in recent weeks.

But mark down June 22, 2022 as a fundamental day in Fanatics history. It’s the day sports gambling became real for the company.

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No, Fanatics didn’t buy a company, receive a license or go live anywhere as a gambling operation. But chairman Michael Rubin announced he will be selling his roughly 10 percent stake in HBSE, the holding company that owns the Philadelphia 76ers and the New Jersey Devils.

Why is that so important?

As far as billionaires go, there aren’t many that top the passion and enthusiasm of Rubin. Despite growing Fanatics to the business it has become, Rubin has been such a constant in the front row of Sixers games that he has a better record of showing up than almost any owner in American sports.

And not only does he show up. He screams and jumps around and enjoys every minute of being there.

That’s why Wednesday’s announcement means so much. Sure, Rubin still keeps the seats and will be there, but he’s obsessed with the business of everything.

That part — owning a piece of the sports team he grew up with — will leave a hole in his life. Not to mention sacrificing his overall goal he had of one day being the primary owner of a team; he last gave hedge fund manager David Tepper a run for his money in the bidding for the Carolina Panthers.

But, as Fanatics gets ready to make a run at becoming a sports gambling company, Rubin realized it was time to get his priorities straight. As an owner, he couldn’t have a company that takes bets on games. And, as much as he loved being an owner, the goal of being a giant in the sports betting game became a greater priority.

Blue Jays vs. White Sox MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Betting Value on Toronto? (June 22)

blue jays vs. white sox-mlb-odds-picks-predictions-betting-wednesday, june 22

Blue Jays vs. White Sox Odds

Blue Jays Odds -110
White Sox Odds -110
Over/Under 9
Time 2:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The White Sox look to complete the series sweep over the Blue Jays on Wednesday afternoon after a dramatic come-from-behind victory Tuesday night.

The White Sox took a 2-0 lead into the seventh inning Tuesday and gave up a run in the seventh and three in the eighth to hand the Jays a 4-2 lead. The White Sox would come back in the ninth to tie the game and snagged the W in extras.

Lucas Giolito looks to guide the Sox to another win as he takes the mound for Wednesday’s series finale. He’ll be opposed by Ross Stripling, who looks to salvage the road series for the Jays.

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Blue Jays’ Bullpen Causing Problems

The Blue Jays looked to rebound from dropping a series at home to their AL East rival Yankees. After dropping the first game of the series, their bullpen let them down Tuesday.

Stripling has put together a solid season for the Jays, and he’s been particularly solid on the road this season. He has a 3.52 ERA but a 2.61 FIP over 23 road innings.

However, these numbers can be a little deceiving when looking at the quality of competition Stripling has faced in his road starts. Additionally, his numbers are watered down by solid bullpen innings as well.

Unfortunately for Toronto, the Jays’ bullpen has been a little erratic of late. The blown save on Tuesday night only exacerbates the numbers of a pen that’s been bottom-five over the past few weeks.

The Jays offense is still a wrecking crew, posting the third-best team wRC+ against right-handed pitching on the road over the past few weeks.

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White Sox Bouncing Back?

Despite showing brief signs of a return to form, the White Sox continually slip back into being a below-average team. However, a series sweep over the Jays could help them turn the corner.

Giolito also looks to turn a corner, as he’s had a rough run over his last four starts. He’s posted an 8.71 ERA and a 7.00 FIP over that span, including one so-so start at home against the Rangers.

Additionally, the White Sox offense finally looks like it’s starting to wake up — especially at home. Over the past few weeks, the Sox have posted a team wRC+ of 100 against RHP at home, which is a huge upgrade from the 60s range they were stuck in before this series began.

Chicago’s bullpen also seems to be in a little bit of an upswing as well despite a disappointing showing so far in 2022. Perhaps a big series victory will help the unit get back on track.

Blue Jays-White Sox Pick

It’s hard to bet against Giolito, especially at home. However, Stripling has put up really solid numbers as a starter this season. And overall, the White Sox offense has been relatively weak against right-handers.

Additionally, underdogs have not fared particularly well this season, so rolling with the Jays moneyline seems like a good bet. It’s at -125 and should be taken as long as it stays in that range.

Pick: Blue Jays ML -125

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MLB Odds & Picks for Mets vs. Astros: Bet Houston in Afternoon Action

mets vs astros-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-wednesday june 22 2022

Mets vs. Astros Odds

Mets Odds +120
Astros Odds -140
Over/Under 8 (-115 / -105)
Time 2:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Luis García and Carlos Carrasco have eerily similar results this season from the pitching rubber. They will go head-to-head when the Houston Astros host the New York Mets on Wednesday.

Carrasco has a 3.45 xERA against a 3.95 ERA, so he’s been fairly unlucky. Meanwhile, García comes into this game with a 3.57 xERA and 3.41 ERA. The difference between the two of them is negligible.

However, the Mets have only been slightly above average against right-handed pitching in the month of June (105 wRC+). The Astros own a 129 team wRC+ and .348 OBP off of righties during that stretch.

This is the angle in this game. A moneyline bet on the Astros is the right call and presents a little value.

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Mets Have Bullpen Issues

Carrasco has an elite walk rate, as he only walks around 5.4% of batters. That means the Astros have to be ready to pull the trigger in the batter’s box.

He’s also upped his strikeout rate two percentage points since last season. He’s a little above average in every peripheral metric, which has led to his favorable results.

Now, the Astros will be without Aledmys Díaz and Jeremy Peña, so they’re short-handed at shortstop. Otherwise, the roster is healthy. Mauricio Dubón has filled in nicely with a .375 xwOBA off of righties in June.

The Astros have five other hitters in the lineup who are over the .335 mark, so this will throw a wrench in Carrasco’s plans. It could force him to exit early.

In the bullpen, the Mets have a team 4.15 ERA and 3.68 xFIP in June, meaning they have been unlucky.

They are down Trevor May and Colin Holderman. Trevor Williams and David Peterson have been getting the starting pitcher duties, so the Mets are coming into this game with a short relief staff and only 13 possible pitchers on the roster.

This could allow the Astros to exploit these issues late in the game.

Edwin Díaz has a sub 0.00 xFIP in June, so as long as Houston takes care of business before he enters the game, it’s in good shape.

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Astros’ Garcia Should Be Able to Handle Business

García has been getting similar results to Carrasco, but he does permit a little harder contact (39th in Average Exit Velocity). That said, he’s above average in walk rate and chase rate, like Carrasco.

The Mets are without James McCann and Travis Jankowski. Jeff McNeil exited the game against the Marlins on Monday (due to a sore hamstring), so this is another blow to the lineup.

Even without those names present on the lineup card, the Mets only have four hitters over the .330 xwOBA mark, so this is a distinguishable difference from the Astros.

They are top-heavy lately, so García should be able to take care of business with the bottom of the New York order.

The Astros, on the other hand, have had a top-three bullpen in June with a 2.81 collective ERA and 3.45 xFIP.

Blake Taylor and Parker Mushinski were two of the weaker bullpen pieces for manager Dusty Baker, but they find themselves on the injured list.

Otherwise, aside from maybe Rafael Montero and Hector Neris, the rest of the relief corps is serviceable.

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Mets-Astros Pick

The Astros have a noteworthy advantage, since they can hit throughout the batting order. The Mets have been weaker at the bottom of the order, so García should win the battle of the starting pitchers.

Once he exits, Houston has more options in the bullpen. Take the Astros from -130, and play them to -145.

Pick: Houston Astros -130 | play to -145

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2022 Travelers Championship Odds & Picks: 2 Outright Bets & 1 DFS Value

travelers championship-odds-picks-dfs-patrick cantlay-lanto griffin-2022

Read more of Derek’s content at RotoGrinders.


The wait is finally over.

We picked up our first winner of the season thanks to Matt Fitzpatrick at the U.S. Open. He has always been known for his short game, but his ball striking carried him to victory on Sunday. The Englishman has added a ton of length off the tee (so much so that I thought about ordering the swing speed system he uses) and hit 17 of 18 greens in the final round. Fitzpatrick became the second male player to win both the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Open on the same course.

While I would love to recap everything great about the U.S. Open last week, we are here to talk about the Travelers Championship. The event will be held at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Conn. This has been a regular stop on the PGA TOUR for many years and one of my favorite non-majors of the year. The course is a par-70 that measures only 6,852 yards. It features two short par 5s and a drivable par 4.

As with most Pete Dye designs, there is more of an emphasis on iron play than on power off the tee. While the fairways are wide, many opt to club down off the tee. The penalty for missing fairways here is one of the greatest on tour. That’s not to say the rough is impossible, but finding birdie opportunities on these small greens is much easier from the fairway. If you like to use putting splits, the greens here feature a mix of bentgrass and poa annua grass.

There isn’t a specific skill set that you need to contend at this course. The leaderboard will likely feature a mix of short and long hitters. The recipe for success is to keep it in the fairway, be precise with your irons, and make a lot of putts. With very little wind in the forecast, we can expect some very good scoring this week.

Bet Patrick Cantlay, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

Favorite Bet: Patrick Cantlay (+1400)

While he hasn’t performed as well as expected in majors the last few years, he’s arguably been the best on tour in the non-majors. He quietly finished in the top 15 of last week’s U.S. Open, which was his 10th top 15 finish in his last 14 starts. During that stretch, he’s picked up two wins, two seconds, and fourth place finishes. He’s played TPC River Highlands four times in his career and has never finished outside of the top 15. He’s the best in the field in strokes gained per round on Pete Dye courses and he loves putting on bentgrass and/or poa annua greens. I like his chances to be in the mix on Sunday.

Longshot Bet: Brendon Todd (+10000)

I was ready to bet Todd at +6000 this week, so I happily put my wager down when I saw him listed at +10000. He’s coming off of finishes of T3 at Colonial and T13 in Canada. His two biggest strengths have long been hitting fairways and making putts. More importantly, he has gained on approach in six of his last seven starts. If the irons show up again, he could find himself on the first page of the leaderboard once more. He might have a tough time closing the door with so many big names in the field, so I’m backing up this outright with a top 10 and a top 20.

DFS Value: Lanto Griffin ($7,100 DraftKings / $8,400 FanDuel)

Griffin hasn’t finished better than T51 in any of his last four starts, but I didn’t consider any of them to be strong course fits.

Griffin’s biggest weakness is his around the green play and that’s put to the test at courses like The Country Club, Southern Hills and Muirfield Village. With greens being easy to hit this week and with the scrambling success rate high, I’m essentially not factoring in around the green play.

When you do that, Griffin vaults up the ratings. He has played well on Pete Dye tracks in the past and is 3-for-3 in making the cut at TPC River Highlands.

As always, good luck this week!

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BetMGM Promo: Code ACTIONNHL Unlocks $200 on the Stanley Cup Final!

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The wait is over, NHL fans. Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final is tonight! And whether you’re backing the favored Avalanche or the underdog Lightning, you’ll want to bet on tonight’s game between Colorado and Tampa Bay with this incredible hockey betting promo code from BetMGM Sportsbook: Bet $10 on Game 4 of Lightning-Avalanche, Win $200 if your team scores 1+ goal!

Yeah, really. ONE single goal! Just sign up using the links in this article or use the promo code ACTIONNHL to take advantage. Then, you’ll be $200 richer as soon as your team nets its first goal of the game tonight. It doesn’t get easier than this no-brainer promotion.

To take advantage, make sure to use code ACTIONNHL simply click one of the links below.

Win $200 if the Avalanche or Lightning Score a Goal!

Bet $10+ on Avalanche-Lightning

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ goal

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible no-brainer promo to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best BetMGM Promo Codes the NHL Stanley Cup Finals, MLB and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $200 to start your account. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using code ACTIONNHL and bet $10 on the Stanley Cup Finals game of your choice. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus, and you’ll get credited $200 if your team nets a single goal (or more) in the game.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Win $200 if the Avalanche or Lightning Score a Goal!

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Not a fan of this NHL offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

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If you need a reminder, here are the details for Game 4:

  • Colorado Avalanche at Tampa Bay Lightning, Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. ET

And if you’d rather use an MLB promo code, here are your betting options for Wednesday:

  • New York Mets at Houston Astros, Wednesday at 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Toronto Blue Jays at Chicago White Sox, Wednesday at 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Philadelphia Phillies at Texas Rangers, Wednesday at 4:05 p.m. ET
  • Arizona Diamondbacks at San Diego Padres, Wednesday at 4:10 p.m. ET
  • Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds, Wednesday at 6:40 p.m. ET
  • Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins, Wednesday at 6:40 p.m. ET
  • Washington Nationals at Baltimore Orioles, Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates, Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. ET
  • New York Yankees at Tampa Bay Rays, Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Detroit Tigers at Boston Red Sox, Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. ET
  • San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves, Wednesday at 7:20 p.m. ET
  • Cleveland Guardians at Minnesota Twins, Wednesday at 7:40 p.m. ET
  • St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers, Wednesday at 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics, Wednesday at 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Kansas City Royals at Los Angeles Angels, Wednesday at 9:49 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Wednesday, June 22

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Avalanche to lead at the end of the first period: boosted to +175 odds
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