3 Strikeout Prop Bets to Target for Friday 4/5/24

Riley Thomas
Riley Thomas_riley8

The lengthy MLB season offers a wide array of bets via the MLB odds at FanDuel Sportsbook.

Strikeout props are among the popular lines offered. These bets can focus on the over/under of a starting pitcher's strikeout total or alternate lines can be utilized for more intriguing odds.

In this piece, we will dive into the stats to back our favorite strikeout props of the day across the MLB's slate. Which pitchers taking the mound could rack up Ks or which may stumble? We have plenty of tools available that can help us zero in on the top picks, and we'll use stats from numberFire's daily fantasy baseball projections, Baseball Savant, and FanGraphs.

Here are some of the most enticing strikeout props at FanDuel Sportsbook for today's games.

Please note lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. All MLB odds come from FanDuel Sportsbook.

MLB Strikeout Prop Bets

Aaron Nola Over 6.5 Strikeouts (+124)

Following a 2-4 start, the Philadelphia Phillies have a solid chance to get back on track against the Washington Nationals, who are the ninth-worst team in numberFire's nERD-based power rankings. The Phillies are -111 to cover the 1.5-run line with one of their top starters on the mound.

After inking a seven-year, $172 million deal in the offseason, Aaron Nola was torched in his season debut, giving up 11 hits and 7 runs in under 5 innings of work. His FIP currently sits at a dreadful 8.57. Nola can show his stuff against one of the worst lineups in baseball as the Nationals are projected to record the third-fewest runs in 2024 via FanGraphs Depth Chart projections.

Washington's strikeout percentage (K%) has soared compared to last season, going from 18.9% (2nd-best) to 24.3% (11th-worst). The Nationals showed some lack of discipline in 2023, swinging at 34.0% of pitches that were out of the strike zone (sixth-worst). They currently hold the fifth-worst mark in the same category (35.4%).

So far, the small sample size of Washington declining in the strikeout category is not too surprising. Joey Gallo and Eddie Rosario were perhaps the most notable offseason additions, and neither batter will knock your socks off. Gallo struggled with a 42.8 K% last season. Rosario has seen his K% sharply increase over the last few seasons, rising from 14.8% in 2021 to 25.2% and 23.6% over his last two seasons.

Nola ranked in the 96th percentile of chase rate in 2023, per Savant. Pair this with Washington's tendency to chase pitches out of the zone, and we could get a big day for Nola's K total.

Cody Bradford Under 3.5 Strikeouts (+114)

One of the Texas Rangers' southpaws will get the start tonight. Cody Bradford will step on the rubber for the second time this season. The second-year pitcher shined with a 2.61 skill-interactive earned run average (SIERA) while striking out six batters in his season debut.

Bradford rarely struck out the opposition in 2023, sitting in the bottom 37% in K% and bottom 21% in whiff percentage. The lefty was able to perform over expectations against the Chicago Cubs with six strikeouts on March 30th, but the Houston Astros figure to be a much tougher challenge. The Cubs are +104 to make the playoffs while the Astros +370 to earn the top seed in the American League (second-shortest) when looking at FanDuel's MLB playoff odds.

While Bradford is off to a good start, I can't ignore all of last year's play. He surpassed three Ks in only three of eight starts in 2023. Of course, Bradford wasn't a full-time starter either, as he made 12 appearances from the bullpen last season.

This isn't a starter that's going to get a ton of pitches either. He had 76 pitches in his season debut and has reached 80 pitches in only three of his nine career starts.

The Astros were tied for the lowest K% against left-handed pitchers last season (18.2%). In a limited sample size, Houston is still at about the same rate against lefties (17.9%).

A deep appearance is not a given for Bradford. Houston remains one of baseball's best hitting teams; they are projected to have the third-most runs per game in 2024. I like the under for Bradford's Ks, especially with the 'Stros rarely striking out against lefties.

Freddy Peralta Over 7.5 Strikeouts (-122)

A strikeout line set at 7.5 is high for anyone. Freddy Peralta has the stuff to back it up, though. He was in the 92nd percentile of K% and whiff rate in 2023. The Milwaukee Brewers new ace also totaled 7.0 strikeouts per start last season.

The Brewers elected to trade Corbin Burnes to the Baltimore Orioles in February, which has officially made Peralta the top starter. Peralta, who has the fifth-shortest odds to win the Cy Young award (+1600), proved it could be the right decision in his first start with one run allowed and eight Ks in six innings pitched.

Friday's opponent -- the Seattle Mariners -- has been an excellent opportunity for pitchers to stack strikeouts. The Mariners had the second-worst K% last season (25.9%) and are off to an even worse start in 2024 with a 30.2 K% (worst mark in baseball).

As previously mentioned, Peralta had an excellent whiff rate in 2023. Seattle was tied for the fourth-worst swinging-strike percentage last season (12.6%) and is currently tied for the sixth-worst mark in the stat (12.5%). Give me Peralta to reach 8 Ks for his second consecutive start.

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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.