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baseball | Friday, June 17, 2022 2:42 PM (Revised at: Friday, June 17, 2022 7:13 PM)

MLB Moneyline Best Bet: Friday June 17th

MLB Moneyline Best Bet: Friday June 17th
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The Detroit Tigers, on a 3-9 run, host the Texas Rangers for the second of their four-game set on Friday evening. Texas won Thursday’s game 3-1 and has won four of its last six, moving into second in the American League West ahead of the slumping Angels.

MLB Best Bet: June 17th

  • Detroit vs Texas: Texas Rangers to win


The Tigers have their ace on the mound in the shape of Tarik Skubal. Up in the 83rd percentile in expected ERA, Skubal is well above average when it comes to striking hitters out and limiting the bases on balls. For all that dominance, Detroit is only 7-5 in Skubal’s 12 outings this season, and he’s conceded seven earned runs across 11 innings over his last two starts. This is not a pitcher at his best.

Off-season acquisition Jon Gray gets the ball for Texas. His 4.85 ERA might be a concern for bettors, but the former Colorado right-hander has an xERA over a run lower. The walks have been a bit of a problem (10% BB rate), yet Gray is striking out plenty and has generally done a decent job at limiting hard contact. He’s also coming off six innings of three-hit ball with 10 Ks against the Chicago White Sox in his last start.

Gray is facing the league’s worst offence. Detroit has a wRC+ of 67 since May 14th. His issue with letting hitters force walks is unlikely to be a factor – the Tigers are at a league-worst 4.4% walk rate over that span. Only three teams have made hard contact less often over this period, too. What we’ve seen from the Tigers of late does not suggest they can get to Gray, who has been better than his results suggest. A.J. Hinch’s team have scored just seven runs over their last five games.

Texas, meanwhile, has been far better on offence. They are above-average in hard-hit rate over that same spell with only the surging Braves and Yankees hitting more homers. Their 109 wRC+ is a marked improvement from where they were earlier in the year.

Skubal has the stuff to shut teams down, and his command has been stellar this year. The one weakness is the amount of hard contact the concedes, which could prove problematic against a Texas offence with a knack for doing damage when it gets the chance.

The pitching matchup favours the Tigers, but not by as much as traditional metrics would suggest. When it comes to the offences, however, the Rangers are a long way clear of the Tigers, who are struggling to get on base or hit the ball hard.

The Rangers are simply a better team than the Tigers at the moment. Detroit is low on confidence. Gray could go deep into this game, and we like Texas to win this at 21/20.

  • Selection: Texas Rangers Moneyline
  • Best Odds: 21/20 (Paddy Power)
  • Stakes: 6/10

Odds as of 3:00 pm June 17th, 2022. Odds may now differ.

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