3 MLB Best Bets for Monday 5/13/24

Gabriel Santiago
Gabriel Santiago@gps_onthemic

Baseball has you covered if you want a large inventory of options to bet.

From moneylines to run totals to first-five-inning wagers, we have plenty of ways to bet the long, arduous MLB schedule daily. Outlooks can be vastly different due to starting pitchers, and a wealth of advanced stats can let us know if an individual pitcher, a bullpen, or a team is due for positive -- or negative -- regression.

Using numberFire's projections as a guide, which MLB odds from FanDuel Sportsbook are most appealing today?

Note: Lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. All stats come from FanGraphs and Baseball Savant unless noted otherwise. Please check here to make sure you're seeing the most updated projections.

MLB Betting Picks

Cleveland Guardians at Texas Rangers, 8:05 p.m. ET

Rangers Moneyline (-110)

Monday offers a rather full slate, and throughout the crowded scheduled, I am intrigued by a clash between the Cleveland Guardians (25-16) and Texas Rangers (22-20). As two of the more impressive clubs in the American League, this is a potential playoff matchup.

Currently, both of these sides are near the top of respective divisional races. Cleveland enters Monday with a half-game lead of the AL Central while Texas is a half-game out in the AL West.

To commence this week and series, the Guardians will give the baseball to Tanner Bibee; the Rangers have Michael Lorenzen penciled in, which makes the pitching duel a pairing of former Cal State Fullerton Titans.

Bibee presently shows a 3.58 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA), but he's allowed 10 combined earned runs over his past two starts. Meanwhile, Lorenzen has a 4.74 SIERA in five appearances this year.

Interestingly, Cleveland and Texas are both in an offensive rut despite boasting impressive lineups. The Rangers were just swept by the Colorado Rockies, totaling just six runs in the three-game series -- and it was at Coors. Cleveland lost three of four bids over the weekend at the Chicago White Sox, also scoring six runs across their three losses.

With everything considered, I like the Rangers to scrap out a needed win upon returning home to Globe Life Field. Leadoff hitter Marcus Semien should set the table for the home team, as he holds a 1.700 OPS in career matchups versus Bibee. From there, numberFire's game projections have a 56.5% winning likelihood for Texas on Monday. That presents value when compared against the Rangers' -110 moneyline odds at FanDuel Sportsbook, which carry a 52.4% implied probability.

Cincinnati Reds at Arizona Diamondbacks, 9:40 p.m. ET

Over 8.5 Runs (+100)

Flipping over to the Senior Circuit, the Cincinnati Reds (17-23) and Arizona Diamondbacks (19-22) will meet for a second series in as many weeks. In Cincinnati (May 7-9), the Reds were swept by the D-backs in a gritty showcase.

Now that these two clubs are downtown Phoenix, the action will be played indoors at Chase Field. Collectively, I believe there are enough factors here to target over 8.5 runs. To make this market more enticing, the over is currently tagged with even-money odds (+100) at FanDuel Sportsbook.

As reigning National League champions, Arizona has continued offensive success in 2024. At the moment, the D-backs have scored the third-most runs in baseball (205 total and 5.0 runs per game). For Cincy, their team batting average (.215) ranks last in the N.L., but their scoring clip of 4.28 runs per game lands much higher up (ninth in the N.L).

For Monday's projected starters, we should expect to see Graham Ashcraft and lefty Jordan Montgomery. Ashcroft is tagged with a 45.7% Statcast hard-contact right now, which could spell trouble at Chase Field (1,100 ft. elev.). On the other side, Montgomery carries a 4.74 FIP, which is nothing to avoid from a hitting perspective.

The Reds recently saw speedy outfielder TJ Friedl return to the lineup. From there, Elly De La Cruz is his own offensive economy; he sports a .884 OPS while leading the Majors with 25 stolen bases.

The MLB game projections at numberFire are also in favor of over 8.5 runs tonight. Per numberFire's model, we see an estimated score of 5.05-4.96 (leaning toward Arizona). That approximation presents more than 10 total runs, and numberFire has the over hitting 62.74% of the time. That is a quality chance for any plus-money wager.

Los Angeles Dodgers at San Francisco Giants, 9:45 p.m. ET

Giants +1.5 (-104)

To renew one of MLB's longest rivalries, the Los Angeles Dodgers (27-15) and San Francisco Giants (19-23) will start a series at Oracle Park on Monday.

These NL West foes have already met in a three-game set previously this season, with Los Angeles sweeping San Francisco at Chavez Ravine. Still, in two of those contests at Dodger Stadium, the Giants lost by a score of 5-4. That gives me confidence to bet on S.F. while getting +1.5 runs (-104 odds) at home.

Regardless of past results, numberFire's model gives the Giants a 58.8% chance to cover the run line tonight.

When looking at the pitching matchup, we see Jordan Hicks taking on MLB rookie Yoshinobu Yamamoto (despite Gavin Stone being listed for L.A. earlier this morning). Both arms have been solid in 2024, as Hicks carries a 4.08 SIERA while Yamamoto shows 2.96 mark in that same metric. Still, the rook from Japan is allowing a higher Statcast hard-hit rate (41.6%) along with more barrels (10.6%).

The Dodgers' offense is far superior compared to San Francisco's, but Los Angeles' lineup noticeably struggled over the weekend versus the San Diego Padres. In two losses at Petco Park, the Dodgers produced just one combined run.

I'm not ready to say "the Giants are out of their offensive slump," but they've scored 4.5 runs per game since last Wednesday. That is a fair increase on their current annual clip of 3.79 runs per game. In this sport, progress feeds confidence, and incidentally, on-field success.

Compared to previous weeks, L.A. is struggling at the plate right now. Hicks should give the Boys in Blue a formidable challenge, especially on a chilly evening by the bay. With first-pitch temperatures expected around 55 degrees in San Francisco, there won't be much carry on batted balls -- that should favor the home side.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.