3 MLB Prop Bets to Target on Monday 8/2/21
Player props can be useful in a variety of ways -- from taking advantage of them straight up (to the tune of cold hard cash) to measuring a player's potential to produce in daily fantasy baseball on FanDuel. Here, we're going to focus on the former.
Please note that betting lines and our game projections may change throughout the day after this article is published. Also, the weather may be an issue in some locations.
Brandon Crawford To Hit a Home Run (+330)
Brandon Crawford fits the mold for a potential home run threat tonight.
When it comes to targeting players for home run upside, I'll always look for players that have a strong combination of fly-ball rate and hard-contact rate in the given split, aka the 40-40 line. Crawford is almost the definition of what we want to see with a 45.3% fly-ball rate, a 38.5% hard-contact rate, and a .267 ISO to top things off.
Crawford will be going up against Taylor Widener, who is allowing 2.86 HR/9 to left-handed hitters, a 48.1% fly-ball rate, and a 45.5% hard-contact rate. Even though Widener has a smaller 36.2 innings pitched sample size at the major league level, he didn't show anything during his time in the minors that would suggest this is unusual for him.
Andrew Heaney Under 6.5 Strikeouts (-106)
Heaney was traded from the Angels to the Yankees at the end of last week and his debut against the Baltimore Orioles tonight could be a bit tougher than some imagine. Heaney does come in with a 28.2% strikeout rate this season, which is no doubt very strong, but the Orioles come in with a 21.6% strikeout rate versus left-handed pitchers, which is the fourth-lowest in the league. Even though the Orioles aren't a "good" team, they don't really waste chances at the plate, which can limit Heaney's ability to rack up strikeouts.
Heaney is also allowing 1.53 HR/9 this season, presenting some potential issues for himself if the balls start flying at Yankee Stadium. Some early home runs could lead to an early departure for Heaney, thus, cashing in on the under on his strikeout prop.
Pete Alonso To Hit a Home Run (+260)
One of the best home run hitters in the league and a favorable matchup tonight?
That is what we have with Pete Alonso, who comes in with a massive .336 ISO, 160 wRC+, 52.4% fly-ball rate, and a 27.9% HR/FB ratio versus left-handed pitchers this season. This shouldn't be a surprise for anyone who follows the MLB since Alonso has power on any day that ends in the letter "y".
The Miami Marlins are expected to have Jesus Luzardo on the mound, who comes in allowing 2.86 HR/9 to righties, a 48.8% fly-ball rate, a 35.2% hard-contact rate, and a 21.4% HR/FB ratio. Luzardo simply allows too many home runs to right-handed hitters, and with the power potential Alonso brings to the plate, he shouldn't have any issues putting one over the fence tonight.