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  • Writer's pictureMason Dalley

Best Bet 8/8/2023

St. Louis Cardinals @ Tampa Bay Rays(-1.5)

DK +124

FD +118

BSB +120

Best Bet Season Record 14-13

Mike Carlson/Getty Images

Stop me if you've heard this before: a pitcher who was middling on other teams was unlocked by the Tampa Bay Rays. Zach Eflin has been a stud all year. in 122.1 IP Eflin has racked up a 3.46 ERA/2.92 FIP/ 1.00 WHIP/25.2 K%/ 3.5 BB%. Led Zeflin is in full effect. He has a very healthy pitch mix of Sinker/Curveball/Cutter/Changeup/4SEAM/Sweeper. The latter 3 operate in a "show me aspect" and the former 3 make up 85% of his mix. The hook is vile with an induced BA/SLG of .162/.323.

All of this leads to a 90th percentile chase rate and soft contact. Eflin also hammers the zone with his cutter and sinker which are also nasty which has lead to a stupid 1.00 WHIP for a starting pitcher. 3.5% BB rate is stupid. Led Zeflin is just bringing it in 2023 is likely going to end up on Cy Young down-ballots.

A Best Bet cover takes two to tango and the Cardinals are a great dance partner. Miles Mikolas has not been himself, nor has any Cardinals pitchers in 2023. I'm not sure what completely falling apart the year the catcher who has been there longer than anybody else means for the team's pitching development, but it's not not something good. 4.29 ERA/3.76 FIP 4.95xERA/4.64xFIP means he's been a bad pitcher who has gotten lucky. The bggets issue he has right now is that he's getting hit hard and the stuff isn't there. a 1st percentile whiff rate is begging to get lit up by good offenses. It'd be really really bad if he were making a start on the road against a top 10 offense where the home team is famously dominant at.

Take a Yandy Diaz and Isaac Paredes total bases while you're at it too.

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