Billy J’s Monday MLB Pick – San Diego Padres @ Miami Marlins

Our in-house MLB expert, Billy J (+9.61 Units), gives his best bet for today!

What a run it was indeed for August. Can’t win them all unfortunately. We look to get back over double digits in the YTD column as there is a pretty healthy slate of games for a Monday to choose from. There are also tons of elite pitching matchups on the docket as well. So which pitching matchup looks best to choose from?

We can choose the Shohei Ohtani versus Luis Castillo matchup out west in Anaheim. There is an intriguing National League East matchup with 13-game winner Carlos Carrasco facing Braves strikeout sensation Spencer Strider. Gerrit Cole and the Yankees will continue to try and get past this slump as they travel to Tampa to take on the Rays whose right-hander Drew Rasmussen went eight perfect innings yesterday before losing the bid with the first pitch in the ninth inning.

All the games above sound very intriguing. However, we will pivot to another game in the state of Florida and focus on the Padres and Marlins matchup. Fresh off the Juan Soto reunion in D.C. over the weekend in which the Padres took two out of three, the Padres will shift gears and travel to South Beach to take on National League Cy Young favorite Sandy Alcantara (10-5, 2.01 ERA).

What else can be said for Alcantara at this point as he is the odds-on favorite to win the award. Next closest on the betting line is Brewers ace Corbin Burnes at +800. It’s Alcantara’s award to lose. Alcantara’s 2.01 ERA is third in the majors and his 145 strikeouts rank ninth in the league. The Marlins offense has not been kind to Alcantara most of this season as he has only collected 10 wins. In his 23 starts this season, Alcantara has 17 quality starts and the Marlins are just 14-9 when he starts. It is definitely reminiscent of those years with the Mets for Jacob deGrom.

Alcantara will be facing the Padres at home where he is 6-3 with a 1.80 ERA and only yields a .191 batting average against. This will be the second contest against the Padres this year as Alcantara’s first start at Petco Park didn’t go that well and was the shortest start of the season as he only went 4 2/3 innings. Alcantara was pulled after 94 pitches and got the losing decision in the 3-2 loss on May 6.

We said this was a pitching matchup kind of day. The Padres will look for right-hander Joe Musgrove (8-5, 2.91 ERA) to go head-to-head with Alcantara. Musgrove was exceptional on his May 8 start but did not factor into the decision as the Padres won in walk-off fashion with a three-run homerun from pinch hitter Jorge Alfaro. In that prior start, Musgrove went seven innings, gave up two earned, walked just one and struck out eight Marlins hitters. He will look to have a similar effort tonight against one of the league’s elites.

Most bettors are looking at every way possible to find the best value on the under. Whether it is the full game or innings plays such as the first five or first three innings. The Marlins offense in the last ten games has been woeful and that is putting it nicely as they have averaged just 1.9 runs for. And in the last ten contests, the over has not hit. The most runs the Marlins have scored in the last ten games has been three runs.

In tonight’s matchup it is already expected that runs will be near impossible as we have the best of the best so far in the National League with Alcantara pitching against Musgrove. The over/under is set at 6.5 runs. Alcantara will be looking to avenge one of his worst starts of the year and both starters are expected to go deep in this game. This can absolutely be a game in which the winning team wins 1-0. Until the Marlins can also show signs of life at the plate, the 6.5 runs total can actually seem pretty high.

The Pick: Under 6.5 runs -110 on Caesars Sportsbook to win 1 Unit

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