Between the start of college football, and a full slate of baseball, my brain is feeling overwhelmed with dopamine.
I'm also not a doctor, nor was I a good student in any particular science class in my life. Can watching and betting on games actually increase dopamine levels in your neurological system? I actually have no idea, but I do know that I've circled three games to wager on in the Big Leagues today.
Here are my three favorite bets on the board for Saturday's MLB action.
Best MLB Bets Today
Rich Hill OVER 3.5 Strikeouts - Boston Red Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays
Hill is figuratively "over the hill" in his age 42 season, but 3.5 strikeouts for his projection today at home feels like a gross overreaction to his last handful of starts.
Is it a concern when you don't retire one Atlanta Brave hitter via strikeout when they strike out the third-most in baseball? Of course, but Hill bounced back the following week with four punch outs in five innings, and still averages just under seven K's per nine innings.
Today's game at Fenway is in the middle of the afternoon, when the shadows will be favoring the pitchers in the early going. The Rays also strike out the eighth-most in baseball this season as well.
At plus-odds, I don't mind a dice roll with such a low bar for Hill to climb.
Colorado Rockies ML at New York Mets
As Reed Wallach mentioned in his betting preview for this game earlier today, this is an exploitable matchup for the Rockies on the road.
They rank tops in baseball vs. left-handed pitching in batting average, and are top five in both weighted on-base average (wOBA), as well as weighted runs created plus (wRC+) vs. southpaws.
Peterson's had a solid year as the Mets' swingman, but comes off a rough last start; going just 4.2 IP vs. the Phillies; allowing eight hits in the process.
Kyle Freeland's inability to get swings and misses scares me, but then again, this Mets lineup doesn't tend to strike out much anyways. New York has also had their issues against left-handers; ranking just 19th in the Majors in wOBA against.
Colorado is sneaky here, and at more than 2/1 odds, I think they're a fantastic value.
UNDER 7.5 - Atlanta Braves at St. Louis Cardinals
If there was ever a time to lean on both team's starting pitching, this matchup is as ideal as it gets.
Jordan Montgomery has gotten better and better since arriving in St. Louis, allowing only a single run in the month of August. He's upped his K/9 from 7.76 on the season to 8.42, and while his ERA is sparkling at just 0.35, his Fielding Independent Pitching, or FIP is also terrific at 1.72; showing this run is no fluke.
As for Charlie Morton, while he's been known to blow up on occasion, his stuff has been completely nasty of late. Not only has he thrown back-to-back games with double digit strikeouts, he's done it against two of the toughest teams in baseball in swings-and-misses in the Mets and Astros. Morton has also gone a minimum of six innings in his last four starts.
With two dominant starters on the mound, and the wind blowing in at 6-8 mph tonight in St. Louis, I'll happily back the under in a marquee matchup in the National League.