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Houston Astros (11-10) at Toronto Blue Jays (14-8)

A+ pitching matchup in Toronto in Jays’ Ace Kevin Gausman vs. Houston’s Framber Valdez. Both are coming off excellent starts holding opponents scoreless through 6+ innings.

Gausman ranks near the top of MLB in K%, Chase Rate and Whiff Rate thanks to his tantalizing Splitter. He’s also in the Top 3% of MLB in Walk Rate, enabling him to pitch with efficiency despite all the strikeouts, which tend to be a drag on pitch count.

Since allowing 3 runs on opening day Gausman has tightened up, holding opponents to 2 or less runs in each of his last 3.

Houston’s lineup struggles vs. Splitters. Last year, Gausman struck them out 9 times in just 4.33 innings. This year, he’s struck out 8+ batters in 3 straight starts, yet his Over/Under today is just 6.5 with Plus Money odds? Very interesting.

Houston pitcher Framber Valdez has also been excellent with a 2.97 expected ERA through 4 starts this year. His elite curveball ranks near the top of MLB in Spin Rate, which has helped him limit opponents to just a 0.275 expected Slugging Percentage (top 9% in MLB). Toronto’s lineup is decent against Curveballs — but Valdez has one of the best, and he’s in great form. Last year he also pitched better in Day games and on the Road.

With all that information considered — here are my picks:

$FML Best Bet

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Kevin Gausman over 6.5 Strikeouts @ +110
$1,100 Bonus

$FML Best Parlay Bet

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First 5 Innings Parlay: Toronto +1.5 / Under 4.5 @ -110
$1,000 Bonus
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