3 MLB Prop Bets to Target on Wednesday 4/21/21
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.
Kenta Maeda Over 6.5 Strikeouts (+120)
Though Maeda has been a bit wild over his first three starts, his opening month last year was a bit, as well. He has walked 5 batters in just 14-plus innings but has struck out 16. That is a K/9 rate of 9.9 per contest, which is in line which his career numbers.
His second start against Detroit was most indicative of what we can expect, as he struck out six in six innings and got the win on just 75 pitches -- 52 were strikes.
He takes on Oakland in a reasonably friendly pitcher's park. Our projections are a touch bearish on Maeda today, forecasting him for 6.18 strikeouts but only projecting him for 5.36 innings pitched. If he gets to six or more, though, Maeda is likely to get to that seven strikeout total for the over.
Trevor Story to Hit a Home Run (+390)
The Colorado Rockies face the Houston Astros this afternoon, and one of the underlying stories is the lack of power from Trevor Story. This was a player who hit 35 home runs just two years ago. Colorado's slugging shortstop has failed to hit one over the fence in 67 at-bats this season.
Story has a hard-hit rate of 46.9%, which is right up with his 2018 and 2019 numbers along with an exit velocity of 91.3 mph. That is a few tenths above his previous two full seasons.
Jose Urquidy has only yielded one home run in 16 innings. His typical rate the past two seasons was seven innings per home run. Signs point to Story being due.
The home field at Coors is too enticing not to take the +390 odds on Story hitting his first four-bagger of 2021.
Max Scherzer Over 9.5 Strikeouts (+120)
Scherzer has not had very good luck in the early going. He does have 24 Ks in 19 innings pitched for an 11.4 K/9 rate. That is actually a little off from his 12-plus K/9 rate the past four campaigns for the Washington Nationals.
Scherzer also is right up at 34% on his strikeout rate, which is in line with his 2019 totals. St. Louis ranks right around where they did last year and has a strikeout rate of 24.3% but closer to 30% on the road this year.
If Scherzer can pitch well into the seventh or eighth inning, he could easily get to double digit strikeouts against a free-swinging Cardinals lineup today and pick up his first win of 2021.