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@FastMoneyLabs’ Friday Night MLB Parlay (+203) - 4/22

Leg 1: Tampa Bay Rays ML (-144) vs. Boston Red Sox

If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. That’s what Red Sox pitcher Michael Wacha may or may not have said this Winter before signing with Boston – the club that knocked his former team, the Tampa Bay Rays, out of the 2021 playoffs.

Tonight, Tampa Bay get its shot at redemption at home vs. their AL East rival and former teammate.

Wacha might be off to a hot start, but I’m not buying it. Through 2 starts with Boston, he’s held opponents to just 3 hits and 1 run in 9.1 innings pitched. Those numbers are great, but they achieved in much easier matchups vs. Minnesota and Detroit.

The Rays present a much tougher matchup for Wacha from a talent perspective and also strategy – since the Tampa Bay Rays arguably know him better than any other opponent he might face this year.

Wacha doesn’t have over powering stuff. For success, he relies on getting hitters to chase bad pitches outside of the zone, and he’s one of the best at doing that. Last year, he ranked in the Top 8% of MLB in Chase Rate.

The problem for Wacha will be that Tampa knows he relies on making hitters chase bad pitches for success. If they can stay disciplined tonight, he should be in for a rude awakening and potentially short outing featuring plenty of walks and baserunners.

Assuming the Rays can plate a couple runs against Wacha, I like Tampa’s projected starter, two-time Cy Young award winner Corey Kluber, to hold it down and secure victory. He’s got a nice track record vs. this Red Sox lineup, and while he’s not the pitcher he once was, he’s still proving effective through 2 starts this year.

Last year, Tampa owned this series going 11-8 vs. Boston (excluding playoffs). They were embarrassed in the playoffs, but I see tonight as the perfect revenge spot. Love this play for Leg 1.

If you’re feeling risky, you could consider pairing Tampa ML with Kluber to get 5+ Ks or Wander Franco to get 2+ Total Bases. To be safe, I kept it simple with Tampa ML.

Leg 2: Phillies ML (-125) vs. Milwaukee

Projected as of one of baseball’s best before season, the Philadelphia Phillies are just 5-8 and sit dead last in the National League East standings.

After a tough 7-game road trip, the team returns home for what sets up as a nice bounce back spot vs. a struggling pitcher I’m eager to fade – Milwaukee’s Freddy Peralta.

Through his first 2 starts, Peralta’s lacked control, walking 6 and allowing more than a hit per inning in just 7 innings pitched. He’s allowed 3+ earned runs in both starts and has yet to make it through a full 5 innings. Do I think he’s due for a positive correction soon? Definitely. Will it come tonight against a Phillies lineup he’s struggled against in the past? Probably not.

Looking at past plate appearances, nearly every hitter in the Phillies lineup has dominated the matchup – especially their sluggers. Nick Castellanos, for example, is 7 for 13 (0.538) lifetime vs. Peralta with 4 doubles and a home run. Bryce Harper has 2 home runs in just 7 At Bats despite normally struggling vs. Lefties. Kyle Schwarber reached base in 5 of his 9 plate appearances. The list goes on.

Pitching for Philadelphia will be Ranger Suarez, who struggled in his opening start but bounced back nicely the 2nd time around, unlike Peralta. For start number 3, as a left-handed-pitcher, he holds an immediate advantage against a Brewers offense that struggles against Lefties. I like him to stifle the Brewers and keep the parlay alive by backing Phillies ML as leg 2.

If you’re feeling risky, consider throwing Castellanos total bases in the parlay. To keep it safe, I’m going Phillies ML!

$FML's Friday Parlay

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Rays ML + Phillies ML @ +203
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