Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 12:45 PM EST. Odds subject to change.
Pinnacle -1½ +126 BET365 -1½ +120 Sportsinteraction -1½ +121 888Sport -1½ +120
Cincinnati -1½ +126 over Colorado
8:40 PM EST. Connor Seabold (RHP - COL) was a 3rd round pick by the Phillies in 2017 and was acquired by Boston in August 2020 before being shipped to the Rockies in the off-season for a player to be named or cash. Think about that for a second. The Red Sox basically gave up on him. In an era where back-end starters are desperately needed, Boston took a pass.
Seabold made one start in 2021 and five in '22 for the Red Sox, going 0-4 with a 10.55 ERA but that doesn’t tell the whole story. Last season, Seabold dealt with a right forearm extensor strain that forced Boston to rest him and monitor his health. We’re assuming they did not like the reports when the season was over.
This year, Seabold has appeared in nine games with two of those being starts. In 24 innings, he has struck out 17 and walked six but the red flags are all over his profile. His 52% first pitch strike rate is weak and suggests he’s falling behind frequently. His fly-ball lean doesn’t figure to play well at this park. His unsustainable 85% strand rate is about to blow up and he’ll now face a Reds’ team coming off a very decent offensive display at a pitcher’s park in Miami.
Chosen with the second pick of the 2017 draft out of Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, California — at a point when he was still a two-way player — Hunter Greene (RHP - CIN) quickly shifted his focus to pitching and found early success in the minors. He earned a spot in the 2018 Futures Game, but not long afterwards sprained his UCL and lost a season and a half to Tommy John surgery. When he debuted in the majors on April 10, 2022, he had just 186 minor league innings under his belt, which is to say that he was still rather raw. Particularly considering he was on a team that lost 100 games, and that he was hit hard early in the year, he acquitted himself well, posting a 4.44 ERA and 4.37 xERA in 125.2 innings.
At times, Greene was dazzling. Via Baseball Savant, he reached triple digits on 337 fastballs, the majors’ second-highest total; no other pitcher threw more than 92 such pitches as a starter. He topped out at 102.6 mph, averaged 98.9 mph on his four-seamer, the highest of any starter, and set some velocity records early in the season.
Thus far this season, Greene’s starts have been uneven. The best of them was his 10-strikeout, zero-walk, six-inning performance against the Braves on April 12. All told, Greene has posted a 3.69 ERA and 4.00 xERA. He’s struck out 30.8% of hitters and walked just 7.7%, down from last year’s 9%; meanwhile his barrel rate is down to 6.4%. Greene has 51 K’s in 39 innings with 16 walks issued. It’s a small sample, but one that suggests he’s heading in the right direction. As a strikeout pitcher with nasty stuff, he and the Reds are worth a bet here to score a bunch more than the Rocks.
Cincinnati -1½ +126 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.52)