3 MLB Player Prop Bets to Target on Wednesday 5/31/23
Player props can be useful in a variety of ways -- from taking advantage of them straight up (to the tune of cold hard cash) to measuring a player's potential to produce in daily fantasy baseball on FanDuel. Here, we're going to focus on the former.
Here are some MLB player prop bets to make tonight.
Please note that betting lines and our game projections may change throughout the day after this article is published. Also, the weather may be an issue in some locations.
Daulton Varsho To Hit a Home Run (+400)
They will be taking on Julio Teheran, who has had an interesting past few years. Teheran recently signed with the Milwaukee Brewers and has only one start under his belt this season. Teheran didn't pitch in 2022, only pitched 5.0 innings in 2021, and pitched 31.1 innings in 2020. We have to go back to 2019 to find a decent sample size for Teheran when he was with the Atlanta Braves.
In 2019, Teheran allowed a .358 SLG, 6.12 xFIP, 1.15 HR/9, 45.7% fly-ball rate, and 39.3% hard-contact rate to left-handed hitters. Those numbers are largely in line with his career numbers, maybe even slightly better.
When it comes to the Blue Jays, they have a ton of power up and down their lineup, but Daulton Varsho has my eye tonight. He comes in with a modest 82 wRC+, .189 ISO, .288 wOBA, 48.4% fly-ball rate, and 33.9% hard-contact rate.
Some of those are relatively average in the grand scheme of things, but the fly-ball rate is very strong against a pitcher who allows too many fly balls. He's due for some positive regression with those numbers compared to his career averages and with solid odds tonight, he's worth a look.
James Paxton Over 5.5 Strikeouts (-110)
Paxton comes in with only three starts this season and has been able to post a very strong 31.7% strikeout rate, along with a 9.4% swing-strike rate and 28.7% called plus swinging-strike rate (CSW%). Three starts is no doubt a small sample size but Paxton posted a 28.3% strikeout rate or higher in each season from 2017-2020.
It's also encouraging to see Paxton up at 87 and 108 pitches in his first two starts. In his most recent outing, he threw only 59 pitches but was simply pulled early after allowing five runs. He should be in a spot to reach for 90+ pitches again and that should put him in a spot to hit over 5.5 strikeouts.
The matchup against the Reds sets up to be a good one since they come in with a 22.5% strikeout rate versus left-handed pitchers, which is the 12th worst in the league. Paxton has 19 strikeouts in 14 innings pitched this season and with this matchup, he should only add to those totals tonight.
Randal Grichuk To Record 2+ Total Bases (+105)
With a 4.46 implied run total, the Colorado Rockies should see a bit of offense tonight.
The Rockies are taking on the Arizona Diamondbacks, who will have Tommy Henry on the mound. Henry is a younger pitcher and his first year in the MLB is off to a rough start. This season, Henry has allowed a .417 SLG, .317 wOBA, 5.72 xFIP, 1.38 HR/9, and 48.8% fly-ball rate to right-handed hitters. He also only carries a low 15.0% strikeout rate, making him a non-threatening pitcher on the mound.
This should put the Rockies' hitters in a spot to put the ball in play and reach for their solid (4.46) implied run total tonight. I'm turning to Randal Grichuk, who is rocking a 200 wRC+, .492 wOBA, .273 ISO, .421 BABIP, 50.0% fly-ball rate, and 35.0% hard-contact rate versus left-handed pitchers this season. Grichuk is hot at the dish with five multi-hit games over his last nine outings, something he should be able to continue tonight.