San Francisco Giants at Pittsburgh Pirates
First pitch: 4:05 p.m. PT
Probable pitchers: Madison Bumgarner (1-2, 3.12 ERA) vs. Jordan Lyles (1-0, 0.82 ERA)
What a long journey it’s been for Lyles, who finally may be breaking out a long while after he was supposed to be relevant.
Following a disappointing three-year stint in Houston, the veteran journeyman toiled away in Colorado and San Diego before succeeding in an important bullpen role for the Brewers last season, utilizing a new curveball grip that appears to still be paying dividends.
Lyles arrived in Pittsburgh this past offseason with the opportunity to start and he’s been anything but disappointing, yielding just one run in his two starts combined. He even tied a career high with 10 strikeouts in his last effort, an encouraging victory at Wrigley Field.
It’s the aforementioned curveball that’s been making the difference, as according to Fangraphs, he’s throwing it more frequently (32.9 percent) than at any other point in his career. He was also doing the same in Milwaukee while opponents hit only .203 off the right-hander.
And of course, it’s always a good thing to be able to lean on the former World Series MVP, Bumgarner, for an under. He’s continued his steady work this season, pitching the Giants into the seventh inning or deeper in all four of his starts. He allowed two earned runs or fewer in three of them.
But the key item that makes this an advantageous spot for Bumgarner tonight is that the Pirates haven’t been able to get anything going opposite left-handed pitching. They rank 28th in team batting average (.209) against southpaws, not to mention 29th in OPS (.551). Pittsburgh has cranked out only two homers and five extra-base hits total with a lefty on the hill.
Make sure you get this under bet in as quick as you can, as it may not remain at its current number. Play: UNDER 7.5 (-120)
Yesterday’s Result: Giants-Nationals Under 8 (WIN)
Zylbert’s 2019 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: 12-10, +0.75 units
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit