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MLB Best Bets for Friday Night, Including J.D. Martinez in a Single-Game Parlay

More plus-money picks to help build the bankroll.

The first week of MLB flew by! I can’t believe it’s already Friday -- but that means it’s time for more plus-money MLB bets!

If you’re just starting to follow along, in this series we are betting mostly for value. You won’t see a lot of heavy favorites.

We won four of our seven bets for the opening weekend at SISB. With plus-money returns for all our wagers, those who tailed our picks and bet their bankroll evenly across all seven bets should have seen a 135% payout -- a 35% profit margin.

Now, let’s see if we can keep it rolling here…

Astros left fielder Yordan Alvarez reacts after hitting a three-run homer in Game 6 of the World Series

Houston Astros ML (+105) vs. Minnesota Twins

Let’s not overthink this: The reigning World Series champs are plus money.

Sure, the Astros have gotten off to a bit of a bumpy start with a 3-4 record, but they are still averaging 4.86 runs per game while the Twins (4-2) are averaging 4.00 per game.

Twins pitching has been sharp this season, leading the league with only 1.89 runs allowed per game. Sonny Gray allowed zero runs in his first start of the season, and he gets the start for the Twins’ home opener. Though Gray didn’t allow any runs in his start vs. Kansas City, he did allow three hits and four walks in just five innings pitched. The Astros could capitalize on any command issues as they are tied for the third-most walks in the league this year.

Jose Urquidy gets the start for Houston. He allowed three runs and seven hits in his last start vs. the Chicago White Sox. However, this current Twins lineup is hitting only .138 vs. Urquidy, so he certainly could keep the Astros in this game.

Yes, there are four automatic outs at the bottom of the Astros lineup right now, but with Kyle Tucker, Jeremy Pena, Jose Aubrey and Yordan Alvarez still swinging the bat well, I’ll take the plus money for Carlos Correa not to have a revenge game.

Chicago White Sox -1.5 (+115) vs. the Pittsburgh Pirates

Lucas Giolito gets the start for Chicago vs. a Pirates team that is striking out 24% of the time and batting only .211. Giolito allowed only two runs while striking out six last week vs. Houston.

Veteran lefty Rich Hill gets the start for the Pirates in their home opener. Hill allowed three earned runs in his first start vs. the Reds, and Chicago should be able to get to him, as the White Sox have hit .271 as a team vs. lefties since the start of 2022.

Chicago is averaging 4.57 runs per game this year, while the Pirates are averaging 3.83.

Yes, the White Sox bullpen could blow this, but that’s why we’re getting plus money.

Los Angeles Dodgers slugger J.D. Martinez

Los Angeles Dodgers -1.5 over Diamondbacks (-135)
J.D. Martinez over 1.5 TB (-110)
Single Game Parlay +125

Clayton Kershaw and Madison Bumgarner face off Friday night, and if this were 2016, this would be an epic pitcher’s duel. As it is, only one of these pitchers looks like he’s still capable of being an ace.

Kershaw continues to defy Father Time, and he should be trusted to get the Dodgers off to a good start. Bumgarner, on the other hand, just allowed five runs to the Dodgers and lasted only four innings in his last start. Kershaw was the winning pitcher in that matchup, striking out nine D-backs on the way to a 10-1 victory.

The Dodgers have been hot at the plate, averaging 6.14 runs per game while the Diamondbacks have mustered only 3.

J.D. Martinez has dominated left-handed pitching his entire career, with a .306 batting average and .965 OPS vs. southpaws. On April 1, Martinez had two hits and cranked his first home run of the season vs. Bumgarner. We will bet he can get at least two bases on Friday night.

I like both the run line bet and the Martinez bet individually, but if you want to get to plus money, play a single-game parlay on SISB for a +125 potential payout.

Looking ahead to the weekend

Saturday: Freddie Freeman and Will Smith have both been hot to start the season, and they have both been hot specifically vs. Zach Davies. Consider their hit and TB props for Saturday’s matchup vs. Arizona, as well as a Dodgers stack for DFS.

Sunday: Mike Trout has an OPS of 1.484 vs. Yusei Kikuchi. He’s batting .429 with two homers. You know what to do. 

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