Today's Free Picks for
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Posted 11:00 AM EST and odds are subject to change.
Boston +135 over Toronto
7:10 PM EST. Yesterday we wrote how the Jays went into Boston in late July and swept the Red Sox while outsourcing them 40-10. Last night, the Jays returned to the scene of the crime and steamrolled the Red Sox once again, this time by a score of 9-2. That’s 49-12 over the past four games combined that Toronto has outscored Boston. Wow. The result of all that is today’s insanely inflated price. Yesterday, in a big pitching mismatch, Toronto was just -138. Today, some joints have the Jays as high as -165 with a less of a pitching mismatch. Incidentally, Toronto scored eight times in the third inning (all with two outs) last night so it’s not like they were spraying the ball around throughout the night.
Brayan Bello (RHP - BOS) was part of Boston's 2017 international signing class. Bello signed for $28K and wasn't considered part of the more vaunted group that the Red Sox signed but he’s come on strong in the last two seasons and now looks like an absolute steal. Considered slight in frame at 6'1" and 170 pounds, the 23-year-old Dominican showed up more muscular this year, but the body still belies the kind of power stuff in his repertoire. He's now gone through three separate velocity spikes, including again this year after last year's spike catapulted him up prospect lists.
Bello now sits 97-99, touching 100 mph with his two-seamer that he works low in the zone. It's an above-average pitch due to his wavering command of the offering. But Bello has taken off because his 100-mph fastball may be his third best pitch. Both his mid-80s slider and high-80s change-up are arguably plus pitches at this point with tons of movement, giving him three impact offerings. The delivery is where much of the debate about Bello's future takes place, as there's some effort and violence to it as well as a long arm action that hinders his overall command, as evidenced by his 9.8% BB% in 2022. Still, the rest of the stuff under the hood looks frontline. Over 85.0 IP across Double- and Triple-A in 2022, Bello has a 33.7% K%, 17.4% swing and miss rate and 63.1% grounders. Outstanding. He also posted a .180 oppBA, and 2.65 xERA. These are elite rates across a number of metrics that portend major league success.
There's at least a mid-rotation starter here due to the fact that Bello's command and ability to cluster his individual pitches should get him to fringe-average control in time, but he'll really need to push things here command-wise in order to project towards the front of a rotation, as he's got three swing-and-miss offerings that hint at the potential. Bello's floor is relatively stable as well. A solid target with the skills to match so keep your eye on him down the stretch.
Pay no attention to Bello’s 8.57 ERA after three starts at this level earlier. It’s one of the reasons that Toronto is so overpriced here. Bello hit the DL shortly after his last start with a groin issue and was pitching in discomfort. We’ll wipe the slate clean and trust that this kid is ready to thrive.
José Berríos (RHP - TOR) has endured a lot of volatility in 2022. Turns out that most of it has come during his road starts (7.50 ERA, 1.59 WHIP in 54 IP). He has given up homers in bunches on the road (2.5 HR/9), a problem manifested by his poor level of command (9% K-BB%) and overall shaky skills there. Win. lose or rained out, the value here is great.
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Boston +135 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.70)