Ripe for Fading College Picks plus MLB Best Bet for Friday

red sox fenway park black and white

College football, you are a fickle beast. This is also why I love you.

Week One was not kind to my bankroll. Week Two was pretty much even. So if you’re reading this, it’s probably time to fade my college picks once again.

But first, there’s some MLB action to discuss. If you follow @thesquarebettor on Twitter you got the Cubs -124 yesterday which hit, just barely, in extra innings.

A win is a win, especially in the world of sports betting. So I’ll take it.

To be fair, it’s been a 5-7 month for this square bettor, with an even 8-8 record (negative units) in the past 30 days betting baseball. Luckily the picks I’m giving out here are what I like best and not the degenerate phone bets I make late at night.

Discipline in sports betting is easy to preach, much harder to practice.

For this site though we’re sitting at a nice 8-2 baseball record so let’s get to the good stuff.

Once I write this next sentence anyone still reading will likely stop. It’s time to fade the Red Sox.

No team has made more money for bettors this year than the Boston Red Sox. Run line darlings, extra juice charged on the money line, it doesn’t matter. The Red Sox have won, and won big, both on the field and in bettor’s bankrolls.

So the book not only needs to charge extra juice because they know bettors will back the Sox regardless of the line, they also need to boost the opposing money line to make it nice and tasty for the square that happens upon the line and wants some plus action.

That square today is me. Stick with me here.

The handicap starts with Noah Syndergaard. Good pitching can shut down a good offense, we see it every October. You don’t need to see Thor’s numbers but here they are anyways:

  • 128.1 IP
  • 132 K’s
  • 31 walks
  • 4.26 K/BB
  • 3.44 ERA
  • 2.70 FIP
  • 3.19 xFIP
  • 3.44 SIERA

Honestly I’m surprised his SIERA is that high but I think that will turn around. Batters have an unsustainable .342 BABIP against him and I see his 2.70 FIP as more indicative of the pitcher that Syndergaard is. He’s allowing 9-percent less hard contact this year and 8-percent more soft contact, and that’s in a year in which hard contact is up across the league. With his elite command (4.26 K/BB) and overwhelming stuff, it’s not hard to imagine him shutting down a team even as gaudy as the Red Sox.

Opposing Thor is Hector Velasquez, who according to his ERA is having a nice year. Here are Velasquez’s numbers:

  • 76.2 IP
  • 48 K’s
  • 26 walks
  • 1.85 K/BB
  • 3.29 ERA
  • 4.34 FIP
  • 4.71 xFIP
  • 4.59 SIERA

So Velasquez is a mid-4’s ERA guy masquerading as a mid-3’s guy. He’s inducing ground balls at 50-percent so his game is pounding hittable sinkers to every batter and hoping for the best. Velasquez features his sinker 36-percent of the time and will also mix in a decent slider and a below average change up. His fastball is his worst pitch and he has thrown it just 24-percent of the time this year.

Bottom line, he’s not very good. The Mets offense has been described as much worse in recent memory, but the version they’re currently running out there has been quite effective in the past week. Dating back to Saturday the Mets offense has averaged 6.33 runs per game and as a team they’ve won 5 of those last 6 games.

The Pick: I know I’m playing with fire betting against the Red Sox but in this world you have to take value when you think you see it, and at +128 I like Noah Syndergaard and the Mets against Hector Velasquez and the Big Bad Red Sox.

Now the time to fade comes. If you don’t know what it means to fade, it means take the opposite side of these college picks:

  • Vandy +14 at Notre Dame (I actually really like this one)
  • OVER 64 Boise State at Oklahoma State (really like this one too)
  • Oklahoma State -2.5 hosting Boise State (I see value giving up less than 3)
  • Washington -5 at Utah (also have this -6.5 and worried about that pick)
  • Pittsburgh +4 (bet this blindly, but looks like Sportsline really likes this pick)
  • Army -7 hosting Hawaii (6 am Hawaii body clock game)
  • Syracuse +3 hosting Florida State (FSU is a fraud)
  • Middle Tennessee State +32.5 at Georgia (public all over Georgia, MTSU is not bad)
  • TCU +14 vs Ohio State in Arlington, Texas (hold out for a 14)





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