MLB weekly betting preview: Can you trust Mets with deGrom on the mound?

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We kept our recent success alive this past weekend with a 2-1 record, hitting on the Royals at plus-money and falling one run short of a clean sweep behind Yu Darvish's gem. Curse you, Padres bats.

Here are our favorite plays for the week ahead.

Rays (-160) @ Angels (+140)
May 3, 9:38 p.m. ET

Starting pitchers: Tyler Glasnow (3-1, 1.67 ERA) vs. Jose Quintana (0-2, 10.13)

This was supposed to be a matchup of potential aces in Glasnow and Shohei Ohtani, who was slated to start Monday before a pitch hit him Sunday. Instead, it's a major mismatch in favor of the Rays.

Glasnow has been virtually unhittable this year, ranking fourth in fWAR (1.7) and boasting a 0.80 WHIP and .144 batting average against. He's always possessed this potential, but the 27-year-old has elevated his play while using a filthy slider to complement his elite curveball, which is responsible for 25 strikeouts on a 55% whiff rate.

The Angels are struggling this year to lay off breaking stuff out of the zone, which is brutal with Glasnow throwing. Expect the Rays to push across enough runs against a sputtering Quintana to support their ace.

Pick: Rays (-160)

Mets @ Cardinals (TBD)
May 4, 7:45 p.m.

Starting pitchers: Jacob deGrom (2-2, 0.51) vs. Kwang Hyun Kim (1-0, 3.29)

Betting on deGrom has been a fool's errand in recent years despite his ridiculous success, and that's been the case again this season. He leads the NL in fWAR (2.1) and is striking out 48% of the batters he faces, yet the Mets are 2-3 in his starts thus far in 2021.

Expect that to change Tuesday against the Cardinals and Kim, whose luck over three starts is on the opposite end of New York's unlucky bats all season. The 32-year-old lefty has done a great job limiting walks, but he's been hit incredibly hard, leading to a 6.47 xERA and .330 expected batting average allowed.

The Mets' lineup has encountered its issues, but the group still ranks in the top 10 in average exit velocity (89.3) and xwOBA (.336), suggesting a bounce-back performance is around the corner. This is the perfect opportunity.

Pick: Mets (TBD)

White Sox @ Reds (TBD)
May 5, 12:35 p.m.

Starting pitchers: Dallas Keuchel (1-1, 4.65) vs. Sonny Gray (0-2, 5.93)

Betting the under at Great American Ball Park is a scary proposition, as the over is 11-3 there after Sunday's 25-run explosion. But this mound matchup deserves your attention.

The best way to counteract a hitter's park is to keep the ball on the ground, and few do that better than Keuchel. The White Sox veteran has posted the fifth-highest ground-ball rate (56.9%) among qualified starters, and he's helped the under cash in three of his last four starts, with the lone exception coming on a total of 6.5.

Gray's overall numbers don't inspire much confidence, but he rediscovered his top-tier form during his last start against the Dodgers, striking out 11 batters in 5 2/3 innings. The Reds ace was especially brilliant with his curveball and two-seam fastball, and he should keep the White Sox at bay, and the score under what will likely be an inflated total.

Pick: Under (TBD)

C Jackson Cowart is a betting writer for theScore. He's an award-winning journalist with stops at The Charlotte Observer, The San Diego Union-Tribune, The Times Herald-Record, and BetChicago. He's also a proud graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, and his love of sweet tea is rivaled only by that of a juicy prop bet. Find him on Twitter @CJacksonCowart.

MLB weekly betting preview: Can you trust Mets with deGrom on the mound?
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