Eys Breakers: Expert Picks – MLB Strikeout Props For Wednesday

Our betting experts are backing Shane McClanahan strikeout props tonight.
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We have a split MLB schedule today with 14 games scattered all throughout the day. We will focus on the 8 games starting at 7:05 ET or later for our targets today. 

Weather is clear across the league with no issues to be concerned about. 

Free MLB Player Props Picks For Today

Shane McClanahan Over 6.5 Strikeouts (-140)

We get started in Tampa Bay, where the Rays continue their series against the Los Angeles Angels. AL Cy Young contender Shane McClanahan gets the start for the Rays for the 24th time this season. 

McClanahan has been one of the best pitchers in baseball this season. His overall numbers are fantastic with a 2.29 ERA that is backed up by a 2.53 SIERA and 2.30 xFIP that rank as the best among qualified starting pitchers. His 32.2% strikeout rate and 16.6% swinging strikeout rate are also the top marks in the league among qualified starters. Dude. Is. Awesome. 

McClanahan has been over 6.5 strikeouts in 18 of his 23 starts this season. The one argument against McClanahan would be that, prior to his last start, he experienced a dip in strikeouts for three consecutive starts. His strikeout rate plummeted to 14.3% and he failed to record more than 4 strikeouts against Cleveland, Detroit, and Baltimore. Was it fatigue, or worse, an injury of some kind? 

The fastball velocity was down against Cleveland and Baltimore, but not against Detroit. The swinging strikes were down against Cleveland and Detroit, but bounced back to an elite 19% against Baltimore. 

I think we just have to chalk those three outlier starts up to a bit of fatigue. The good news is McClanahan bounced back in his last start against Kansas City with 8 strikeouts in 7 innings. The fastball velocity was right at his season average of 96.7 MPH, and the 15.6% swinging strikes were again at an elite level. 

Today, he gets a matchup with the Angels who have struggled this season with an 89 wRC+ and .293 wOBA. They also have struck out at a rate of 26.1%, which is the highest in baseball. It is worth noting that they have played much of this season without Mike Trout, who is now healthy and should be in the lineup.

The return of David Fletcher and the emergence of Luis Rengifo also help lower their strikeout rate considerably, but there are still plenty of strikeouts in the LA lineup. They project to have 6 hitters in the lineup today who have struck out more than 23.5% of the time versus left-handed pitching this season. 

McClanahan appears to have put a brief period of struggle behind him with another dominant outing his last time out. He gets a plus matchup today and I think he goes over 6.5 strikeouts. 

Lucas Giolito Over 4.5 Strikeouts (-145) 

Next, we look to Baltimore, where the Orioles take on the Chicago White Sox. Lucas Giolito will make his 23rd start of the season for the White Sox. 

Giolito’s results have taken a significant step backwards this season after three consecutive seasons of very solid production. His ERA is all the way up to 5.34 this year after hovering around 3.50 for each of the last three seasons. A look under the hood tells he has actually pitched much better than his results this year. His 3.71 SIERA and 3.61 xFIP both suggest he is still basically the same pitcher as the last few years.

He has been incredibly unlucky on batted balls with a .363 BABIP that is over 100 points above his career mark. The strikeouts are down, but still well above league average at 25.9%, and the walks are still respectable at 8.6%. 

His strikeout line of 4.5 is a full strikeout too low at most sportsbooks. Despite his struggles this season, Giolito has still been over 4.5 strikeouts in 18 of his 22 starts. Yes, his strikeouts are down this season compared to year’s past, but he is still an above-average strikeout pitcher. 

The matchup today against Baltimore is not an easy one as they have performed admirably in the second half of the season. They have been well-above average since the All-Star break with a 111 wRC+ and a .320 wOBA that ranks 8th in the league. The strikeout rate has also come down to 21.6% since the break, which is well below their season mark of 23.0%. 

Despite Baltimore performing above expectations, Giolito is not as bad as his results this season. He remains an above-average strikeout pitcher, and I think he easily goes over 4.5 strikeouts today. 

Zac Gallen Over 5.5 Strikeouts (-110) 

Finally, we head to Kansas City, where the Royals host the Arizona Diamondbacks. Zac Gallen will make his 24th start of the season for the Diamondbacks. 

Gallen has been great this season with a 2.78 ERA. The results are on the lucky side of variance as he has benefited from a .245 BABIP, but his 3.44 SIERA and 3.46 xFIP are still both very solid. The skills have been above average with a 25.1% strikeout rate and 6.7% walk rate. 

Gallen has been on quite the run in his last three starts. He is coming off a brilliant performance against the Giants in which he threw 7 scoreless innings and struck out 12. He was masterful in Coors Field the start before the Giants, and he dominated the Pirates in the start prior to Coors. His numbers over his last three starts: 21.1 innings, 0 runs, 9 hits, 26 strikeouts, 3 walks. Sheesh. 

He gets a favorable matchup today against Kansas City. Andrew Benintendi, Carlos Santana, and Whit Merrifield are all wearing different uniforms. Vinnie Pasquantino and Adalberto Mondesi are on the Injured List. What’s left is a well-below average offense. The projected lineup has posted a .295 wOBA and 23.7% strikeout rate against right-handed pitching this season.  

He should be able to continue this great run he has been on. Give me Gallen over 5.5 strikeouts

Player Props Betting Card For Today

That will do it for today’s breakdown of the MLB slate. We were able to identify three strikeout props to target

Thank you for reading and good luck with your bets!