Best MLB Props Picks For Wednesday's Baseball Action (August 4)

Max Scherzer of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Does that have any kind of ring to it?

We won't know, I guess, until it is determined whether the acquisition of the three-time Cy Young winner, along with star infielder Trea Turner, will make a difference in the National League West race.

On Wednesday he makes his first start for the Dodgers, and it comes against one of the top offensive teams in baseball, and obviously one of the favorites to ultimately wind up in the World Series to possibly meet the Dodgers. We're talking about the Houston Astros, against whom Scherzer had middling results in the 2019 World Series, allowing four runs in ten innings.

A big star of that Astros team is one of the people he'll be worried about, and he's got a bit of a comfort level there.

MLB Player Prop Best Bet for August 4th

Astros vs. Dodgers Best Bets

JOSE ALTUVE (Houston Astros) UNDER 0.5 HITS (+140)

Opponent: Los Angeles Dodgers (starter - Max Scherzer)

Time: 9:40 PM ET

The guy to look for here may have been Jason Castro, who has been to the plate nine times against Scherzer and gone hitless, striking out eight times.

But Altuve has not done much with the future Hall of Famer. He has gone just 4-of-17, without an RBI, and Scherzer has not put him on base through a walk either.

Remember that with Scherzer, you've got someone where it's quite possible he'll go some innings - he averages six per start, and he's taken the mound once since July 18, so he should be fresh.

MLB 1st 5 Innings Picks (August 4)

Phillies vs. Nationals Best Bets

FIRST 5 INNINGS: PHILLIES vs. NATIONALS UNDER 5 RUNS (-105)

Starting Pitchers: Chase Anderson (Phillies) vs. Paolo Espino (Nationals)

Time: 7:05 PM ET

Chase Anderson is not having a good season (2-4, 6.75 ERA). But when you examine how he has done against the likely people Washington is putting into the lineup on Wednesday, he's been pretty effective. These guys have hit only .230 lifetime against him, with five earned runs being produced.

We used that as a key criterion in looking at Anderson against this particular team, because it just kind of stuck out for us.

Paolo Espino doesn't have a lot of experience against this Philadelphia lineup, but he hasn't done so badly, as he has surrendered a .310 on base average against those guys.

It is true that we had to weigh different factors in evaluating these guys, and at the end the expectation is that they will both surrender 2.36 runs over their five-inning stint.

Not surprisingly, this game is listed as a pick'em in the five-inning prop. I'd give Anderson a slight edge because of his past performance against these Nationals players. And we should add that Washington has gutted itself a little because of trades.

But in terms of the five-inning total, we can get a decent price with the "under" here, and we're working with an edge here too.

Royals vs. White Sox Best Bets

FIRST 5 INNINGS: ROYALS vs. WHITE SOX -1.5 RUNS (-115)

Starting Pitchers: Lucas Giolito (White Sox) vs. Cesar Hernandez (Royals)

Time: 8:10 PM ET

Even if Adalberto Mondesi was healthy enough to play (he's on the injured list), he probably would be held out against Lucas Giolito, since he is only 1-for-19 lifetime against him.

Still, Giolito's numbers against KC's likely starting lineup are pretty damn good. They are hitting just .202 against him, with an OPS just over .600. And Giolito has a 30.6% strikeout rate.

The guy he'll have to watch out for is Salvador Perez, who's hit a pair of homers against him, but Andrew Benintendi is the only Royals starter who has hit better than .261 against him.

In Giolito's last three outings, he's yielded three runs in 21 innings. And he's given up just one homer over his last five starts.

Kansas City is 17-34 on the road and has been outscored by 1.6 runs per game. The ChiSox are 37-18 at home and have outscored the opposition by 1.4 runs per outing, So if we can reduce this to a near pick'em in the five-inning prop, let's do it.

MLB First Team to Score Picks for August 4th

Angels vs. Rangers Best Bets

ANGELS vs. RANGERS TO SCORE FIRST RUN (+160)

Starting Pitchers: Shohei Ohtani (Angels) vs. Kolby Allard (Rangers)

Time: 8:05 PM ET

Okay, we all know about the legend of Shohei Ohtani. And with his pitching arm and bat, he may just win the day for the Angels here.

But perhaps not early on. What's interesting about this matchup - and let's keep in mind that Allard has a 2-9 record this season - is that he's actually been pretty tough on hitters in the first inning. In fact, they are batting .195 against him, with a .244 on base, and the first inning is the only inning (aside from one ninth-inning appearance) in which he has not given up a home run.

Meanwhile, Ohtani has had early woes, allowing eleven runs in the first innings of his starts. But he settles down, allowing a total of three runs in the second, third and fourth innings combined. And Allard allows hitters to bat .352 in the fourth inning.

But as far as the opening frame is concerned, we've got a shot.

Read our MLB first team to score props betting guide.

About the Author

Charles Jay is unlike most analysts associated with handicapping and the gaming industry, in that he also has had extensive experience in the so-called "mainstream" media as well.

He has been involved with professional sports industry for almost two decades, working in all capacities, as a matchmaker, booking agent, manager, and also as an editorial consultant on USA Network's "Tuesday Night Fights," which, for a time, carried "Charles Jay's Line" on upcoming fights. As a broadcaster, he has called world title fights around the world for various outlets, and has served as a color commentator for Sunshine Network and Prime Network.

His radio experience includes being the host of numerous programs, including "Sportswatch with Charles Jay" on KDWN in Las Vegas, "Total Action" on WAXY 790 in Miami, and "Charles Jay's Winning Edge", syndicated into 55 markets by the American Radio Networks, and he's done podcasts on all subjects related to sports, gaming and popular culture.

Working within the casino industry, he has a special events consultant for Casino Magic in Mississippi, as that venue established itself in the early 1990s as a hotbed of boxing activity in particular. Prior to this, he had been engaged as a casino gaming columnist for, among others, Casino Player, Card Player and Sports Form (now known as Gaming Today), specializing in blackjack. And later on, his investigative series on boxing, entitled "Operation Cleanup," won him much critical acclaim, including the 2003 "Dignity" Award, in the category of "Best Sports Writer," as bestowed by the Retired Boxers Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to rendering assistance to ex-fighters in need.

In 2006 he established a content services division of his company, which has eventually evolved in JayWords, and he is arguably the world's most prolific sports & gaming writer, with over 20,000 articles to his credit, the vast majority of which have been sports handicapping pieces. So you might say he has analyzed as many sporting events as anyone alive during this period. He has also brought some interest with his so-called "gimmick" odds on special events, including the Academy Awards, the NFL Draft, and the Super Bowl, for which he posted dozens and dozens of different odds propositions with various sportsbooks.

This renaissance man is a winner of the Retired Boxers Foundation's "Dignity Award" and a member of the Florida Boxing Hall of Fame; graduate of the University of Miami (Florida) who currently resides in the South Florida area.