MLB Bets for Monday, April 12: Home Favorites White Sox and Astros to Cover

SI Gambling analyst Roy Larking previews Monday's MLB betting action and shares the two top picks on his baseball betting card.
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Cleveland at Chicago White Sox

Cleveland visits Chicago to begin a four-game AL Central Division series tonight. Game time for the Cleveland vs. White Sox matchup is slated for 8:10 p.m. ET at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago. This is the first of 19 meetings this season. Cleveland won the season series 8–2 last year and has won six straight against Chicago. Cleveland won two of three games (7–1 and 5–4 F/10) in Chicago. The White Sox avoided a series sweep with a 2–0 win in the first game. Cleveland sits first in the AL Central standings and has a 1.5-game lead on Chicago, fourth overall.

Cleveland (5–3) enters this contest on a four-game winning streak. Cleveland opened its season on the road against the Tigers. Cleveland lost the first two games (3–2 and 5–2) before a 9–3 win in the series finale. Cleveland opened its home schedule with a 3–0 loss and a 4–2 win against Kansas City. That was followed by a 3–0 weekend series sweep of Detroit. Cleveland outscored the Tigers 20–6 during three games at home. The MLB futures board at DraftKings lists Cleveland (+1000) as the third favorite to win the AL Central title. It is a +4000 long shot to win the World Series.

Chicago (4–5) opened its season with a 3–1 series loss on the road to the Angels. Los Angeles outscored the White Sox 16–10 during three wins. Chicago avoided a sweep with a 12–8 victory in the second game. That was followed by a 2–1 series win in Seattle. The White Sox won the first two games, 6–0 and 10–4, before the Mariners' winning 8–4 to close out the series. Chicago opened its home schedule with a 6–0 win and a 4–3 F/10 loss against the Royals. The White Sox (-106) are favorites to win the AL Central, and their current +1100 World Series price is sixth overall chalk.

Going deep into their respective pitching rotations, fifth-ranked starters get the call for both teams in this contest. LHP Carlos Rodón (1–0, 0.00 ERA) makes his second start for Chicago. He allowed just two hits, over five scoreless innings, and earned the victory during the White Sox 6–0 win in Seattle. RHP Triston McKenzie (0–0, 2.45 ERA) is making his first start for Cleveland. He relieved starter Logan Allen and allowed one run, on two hits over 3.2 innings, during the Cleveland 3–0 loss to Kansas City. Take the generous run-line juice and back Chicago to cover the spread against Cleveland.

Pick: Chicago White Sox -1.5 (+150) ATS at DraftKings

Betting Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook: Game Time 8:10 p.m. ET

Betting Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook: Game Time 8:10 p.m. ET

Detroit Tigers at Houston Astros

Unfamiliar foes meet when Detroit opens a three-game series in Houston tonight. The Tigers vs. Astros contest's first pitch is slated for 8:10 p.m. ET at Minute Maid Park in Houston. These teams didn't meet last year due to the pandemic-shortened schedule, and this is the first of seven games this season. The Astros dominated the Tigers with an 11–2 record during the two previous seasons. That includes a 6–1 record in 2019, and Houston won five of those games by two runs or more. The Tigers' lone win, 2–1 in Houston, was historic as Detroit was a +435 moneyline underdog.

Houston entered that game with a 45–15 home record and was 81–46 overall, while Detroit had a 38­–86 record. Justin Verlander pitched a complete-game two-hitter for the Astros, but both Detroit hits were home runs. The Tigers are 3–6 this season, and they are looking to snap a four-game losing streak. Detroit won its season-opening series 2–1 at home against Cleveland. That was followed by a 2–1 series loss at home to Minnesota and a 3–0 sweep on the road in Cleveland. The Tigers placed veteran slugger Miguel Cabrera (biceps) on the 10-day injured list after the game on Saturday.

Houston (6–3) begins a second straight home series and enters this contest following a rare off-day on Sunday. The Astros opened their season with a 4–0 sweep on the road against the Athletics as they crushed Oakland by a 35–9 margin. That was followed by a 7–6 loss and a 4–2 win on the road against the Angels in Los Angeles. Escaping reactions from hostile crowds on the road, Houston defeated Oakland 6–2 during its home opener before losing 6–2 on Friday and 7–3 on Saturday. The Astros have a .280 team batting average, and they've scored 56 total runs. That ranks fourth overall in both categories.

Now in his second season, RHP Casey Mize (0–0, 2.25 ERA) gets the start for Detroit. He allowed one run on five hits over four innings. He took a no-decision during the Tigers' 4–3 F/10 win against Minnesota. Mize posted a 0–3 record, with a 6.99 ERA, over seven starts as a rookie. RHP Zack Greinke (1–0, 1.38 ERA) is making his third start for Houston. He pitched seven scoreless innings during the Astros' 8–1 Opening Day win against Oakland. He allowed two runs, over six innings, and took a no-decision during the Astros' 4­–2 win against the Angels. Lay the runs and bet on Houston.

Pick: Houston Astros -1.5 (-112) Against the Spread (ATS) at DraftKings

Betting Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook – Game Time 8:10 p.m. ET

Betting Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook – Game Time 8:10 p.m. ET

2021 MLB Regular-Season Betting Record: 4–8 (-4.9 Units)