NRFI Bets to Target on Friday 7/5/24

Skyler Carlin
Skyler Carlin@skyler_carlin
NRFI Bets to Target on Friday 7/5/24

The MLB season is an annual marathon that gives us months of daily betting markets to consider.

While traditional player props like home runs and strikeouts remain popular options, one market that's gained steam is betting whether or not no runs will be scored in the first inning -- aka a No Run First Inning (NRFI) bet.

On FanDuel Sportsbook's MLB odds, we can find NRFI odds listed as 1st Inning Over/Under 0.5 Runs odds under each MLB game.

Where can we find value in this unique prop market today?

Please note: lines and projections are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published.

Best NRFI Prop Bets

St. Louis Cardinals at Washington Nationals

Under 1st Inning 0.5 Runs (-120)

Taking a NRFI in a game involving Patrick Corbin may seem like a disastrous idea, but he hasn't been entirely dismal in the first inning. Besides boasting a 15-2 NRFI record with 11 straight starts with allowing zero earned runs in the opening frame, Corbin has a 4.22 xFIP, 1.24 WHIP, and just a 14.3% strikeout rate in the first inning through his 17 starts for the Washington Nationals.

At the same time, Corbin is posting a 5.7% walk rate and 44.6% groundball rate in opening inning of contests. The matchup against the St. Louis Cardinals is a solid one as the red birds have the 11th-lowest wOBA (.302), 14th-lowest wRC+ (98), and 3rd-lowest ISO (.133) in the last 30 days.

Sonny Gray is set to take the mound for the Cardinals with a formidable 13-2 NRFI record across 15 starts in 2024. In his first year in St. Louis, Gray is tallying a 3.11 xFIP, 1.13 WHIP, and a 30.0% strikeout rate in the first inning of his outings.

The Nationals are logging the second-worst wOBA (.245), worst wRC+ (56), and worst ISO (.083) in the first inning, which certainly aids Gray's chances of getting three quick outs to begin Friday's contest. Washington has the highest NRFI percentage (86.21%) while St. Louis holds the seventh-highest NRFI rate (79.07%) in all of baseball.

Detroit Tigers at Cincinnati Reds

Under 1st Inning 0.5 Runs (-111)

It is tough to ignore the value in a NRFI for Friday's showdown between the Detroit Tigers and Cincinnati Reds with Reese Olson being lights out to begin games. Ahead of his 17th start for the Tigers in 2024, Olson is rocking a pristine 16-0 NRFI record due to producing a 2.72 xFIP, 0.75 WHIP, and 32.2% strikeout rate in the opening frame.

Getting on base versus Olson in the first frame has been a challenge for hitters as he's permitting a .189 wOBA and .170 SLG in the opening inning. While this game is at Great American Ball Park, the Reds have the 12th-worst wOBA (.288) and 8th-worst wRC+ (81) in the first inning.

With Olson registering elite numbers to begin his outings, Carson Spiers will be needed to achieve a NRFI in this matchup. Spiers is slated to make just his fourth start for Cincinnati, posting a 2-1 NRFI record up to this point.

Despite Spiers carrying a 4.57 xFIP and 1.33 WHIP in the first inning, the Tigers have accrued the fourth-worst wOBA (.281) and fifth-worst wRC+ (80) in the last 14 days. Lastly, Spiers has a 7.7% walk rate in the first inning while Detroit is drawing free passes at the sixth-lowest rate (7.6%) against right-handed pitching.

Arizona Diamondbacks at San Diego Padres

Over 1st Inning 0.5 Runs (-113)

The Arizona Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres will be playing at what many believe to be a pitcher-friendly venue at Petco Park on Friday. However, Petco Park has the highest home run factor (133) among MLB stadiums in 2024 -- at least at the moment.

That makes a YRFI that much more enticing with Slade Cecconi and Randy Vasquez on the bump in this NL West bout. Cecconi is producing an impressive 10-1 NRFI record with a fantastic 2.56 xFIP and 0.55 WHIP in the opening frame.

On the other hand, Cecconi is in just the 41st percentile in xERA (4.12), 33rd percentile in strikeout rate (19.9%), and 8th percentile in barrel rate (11.2%). The Padres have also registered the 6th-best wOBA (.342), 6th-best wRC+ (127), 11th-best ISO (.173), and the lowest strikeout rate (14.8%) over the last 14 days.

It's been an entirely different story for Vasquez, who is carrying a forgettable 5-6 NRFI record due to an inflated 5.29 xFIP, 1.82 WHIP, and just a 15.4% strikeout rate in the first inning. Arizona has been one of the better offenses in baseball in the last 30 days, earning the 5th-best wOBA (.343), 6th-best wRC+ (123), 11th-best ISO (.172), and 6th-lowest strikeout rate (19.5%) in that span.

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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.