World Series Game 1 Prop Bets and Picks: Verlander Among our Plays

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The 2022 World Series starts Friday with Game 1 between the Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies. Oddsmakers have the Astros listed as the favorites. Houston is making its second straight appearance in the World Series.

While you may already have your World Series wager placed with your favorite sports betting apps, you may also be seeking prop bets for each game. Here, we offer a few picks on World Series Game 1 props.

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Phillies vs. Astros Game 1 Prop Bets

Pick: Run Scored in First Inning, +128 FanDuel

Is there something nerve-wracking about the first moments of the World Series?

Since 2012, there has been a run scored in the first inning of every Game 1 except one. That was last year, when the Braves beat the Astros 6-2 and went on to win the series.

Otherwise, a score in the first frame is the norm.

That’s right: From 2012 to 2020, a stretch of nine years, at least one team scored in the first inning of the first game of the Fall Classic every time. Often, it was multiple runs.

Wager: $100 to win $128 at FanDuel, if either team scores in the first inning.

Pick: Justin Verlander 8+ Strikeouts, +230 FanDuel

The Phillies averaged nine Ks per game in the NL Championship Series. Only one starting pitcher, Yu Darvish, recorded as many as seven strikeouts against the Philadelphia lineup. But Houston’s Game 1 Starter, Justin Verlander, isn’t just any pitcher.

Astros pitcher Justin Verlander is in top form for Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Astros pitcher Justin Verlander is on our props sheet for Game 1 of the World Series (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Verlander holds the all-time postseason record for strikeouts. In his most recent start against the Yankees in the AL Championship Series, Verlander struck out 11, including six in a row, which tied his own postseason record.

Sure, Verlander has a checkered history in the World Series: a 5.68 ERA in seven starts, and no wins in six decisions. But even with that mediocrity, JV has fanned a batter per inning in World Series play.

The primary predictor for Verlander’s success in the World Series is how the big righthander is pitching right now. He just had a brilliant season, posting the second-lowest ERA by a starting pitcher since divisional play began. He dominated the Yankees in the ALCS. Verlander has proved that even though he’s 39, he can go deep into games. In 13 of his 28 starts in the regular season, Verlander pitched into the seventh inning. If he gets 19 or more outs in Game 1, Verlander should get the eight Ks that would win this prop bet.

Wager: $100 to win $230, if Verlander strikes out at least 8 Phillies.

ALSO: Game 1 Odds, Pitching Matchup, Lines, and Pick

Pick: Yordan Alvarez Over 0.5 RBI, +162 Caesars

We can’t believe we can get +162 on this prop bet from Caesars. Alvarez hits third in the lineup behind Jose Altuve and Jeremy Pena. He is bound to find himself in the middle of a Houston scoring opportunity. The slugger had only one RBI in the series against the Yankees, so he is due.

Wager: $100 to win $162, if Alvarez drives in at least one run.

Pick: J.T. Realmuto 2+ Hits, +220 BetMGM

The Phillies catcher is one of the best hitters in baseball, but is often overshadowed by the sluggers on his own team. He had three hits in the last two games of the NLCS, including two singles in clinching Game 5. We like Realmuto to have a good approach against Verlander (who has only faced J.T. twice).

Wager: $100 to win $220 from BetMGM, should Realmuto have at least two hits.

Pick: Inning of Last Score: 8th, +245 DraftKings

Verlander only gets better as he goes along, so if he allows any runs, we expect it to be early. The Houston bullpen is the best in baseball, and we wouldn’t expect the free-swinging Phillies to have success in the later innings.

But, Houston has a tenacious approach offensively, with several hitters who shorten their stroke. The Astros understand the importance of late runs. We like the ‘Stros to score in the 8th inning, as the last runs of the game.

Wager: $100 to win $245, as long as the final runs of the game are scored in the eighth inning. These odds are from DraftKings Sportsbook.

MORE: Current World Series Odds

About the Author
Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes

Writer and Contributor
Dan Holmes is a writer and contributor for Gaming Today with plenty of experience under his belt. Dan has written three books about sports and previously worked for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Major League Baseball. Currently, Dan is residing in Michigan with his family.

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