MLB Saturday Picks and Parlay 10-07-23: Astros Aim to Continue ALDS Dominance

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As we shift from the Wild Card round with its unprecedented sweeps to the divisional round, we anticipate much closer matchups. These series offer intriguing storylines, including the Rangers and Orioles returning to postseason play for the first time since 2016, the Twins breaking their 18-game postseason losing streak to face the defending champions, and divisional rivalries with the Braves hosting the Phillies and the Dodgers taking on the Diamondbacks.

MLB Picks and Parlay 10-07-23: +827 Odds

Here are three of my favorite parlay picks for today’s games, offering a payout at enticing +827 odds.

MLB Pick: Astros ML (-155)

The Houston Astros have been a dominant force in the postseason, making six consecutive appearances in the ALCS and securing two World Series championships since 2017. They have a tendency to perform well in the ALDS, consistently taking the first game and going up 2-0. On the flip side, the Minnesota Twins recently ended an 18-game postseason losing streak by sweeping the Blue Jays in the Wild Card round. While the Twins possess a strong starting rotation and power at the plate, I believe the Astros will have the edge in Game 1.

Houston boasts a significant advantage in starting pitching with the experienced Justin Verlander on the mound. Verlander, with his 18 seasons of MLB experience, holds a 3.64 ERA in 35 postseason games. In the ALDS, he boasts a 3.08 ERA over nine appearances with an 8-1 record. The Twins, on the other hand, will start Bailey Ober, a rookie with no prior postseason experience. While Ober had a solid regular season, his lack of postseason experience could be a significant factor. While I expect the Twins to challenge Houston in this series, given the Astros’ history of ALDS success and Verlander’s presence, I’m backing the home team in Game 1.

MLB Pick: Phillies ML (+175)

In a highly intriguing series, the Philadelphia Phillies take on the Atlanta Braves in an NLDS rematch from last season. Both teams have represented the National League in the World Series over the past two years, and the winner of this series could be a strong contender for the NL pennant. Last season, the Phillies won in four games, with the Braves looking rusty after an extended break. Atlanta hasn’t played since October 1 but has taken a unique approach to stay sharp while waiting for their opponent. Spencer Strider gets the start for the Braves.

Strider is a power pitcher with a fastball averaging 97.3 mph, and he recorded the most strikeouts of any pitcher in the league this season. However, his recent form has been shaky, with a 5.67 ERA in his last six outings. Furthermore, Strider struggled against the Phillies in his only postseason start last year, surrendering five earned runs in just 2.1 innings. On the Phillies’ side, left-hander Ranger Suarez starts, and he played a crucial role in their postseason run last year. While Suarez has seen some regression this season, his postseason performance last year was outstanding. He allowed just two earned runs across 14.2 innings in five appearances (three starts). Strider may have the edge as the better pitcher, but Suarez’s playoff experience and the Phillies’ ability to compete make the underdogs a tempting bet.

MLB Pick: Dodgers -1.5 (+105)

The Los Angeles Dodgers ended the season with an 8-5 record against the Arizona Diamondbacks, with seven of those victories coming by at least two runs. I’m approaching this game similarly to the Astros, emphasizing the importance of taking an early series lead in the NLDS. Since 2016, the Dodgers have a 6-1 record in Game 1 of the NLDS, and I believe they’ll win Game 1 at Dodger Stadium.

Clayton Kershaw starts for the Dodgers, and while he has faced criticism for his postseason performances, he has been dominant lately. Over his last 13 outings, Kershaw has allowed more than two earned runs just once. Facing Arizona, against whom he pitched well this season, bodes well for him. On the other side, 34-year-old Merrill Kelly makes his first postseason start for the Diamondbacks. Kelly had an impressive season with a career-best 3.29 ERA, but his lack of postseason experience is a notable factor. The Dodgers previously roughed him up for seven earned runs on 12 hits in five innings. Given Kershaw’s form and experience, I’m confident the Dodgers will cover the run line in Game 1.

Note: Betting involves risk, and these picks are for informational purposes only. Please gamble responsibly.

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