Player props can be useful in a variety of ways -- from taking advantage of them straight up (to the tune of cold hard cash) to measuring a player's potential to produce in daily fantasy baseball on FanDuel. Here, we're going to focus on the former.
Please note that betting lines and our game projections may change throughout the day after this article is published. Also, the weather may be an issue in some locations.
Juan Soto To Hit a Home Run (+385)
Juan Soto is an elite hitter, and any chance we can get him in a favorable matchup for a home run, we have to take it.
The Washington Nationals have a 4.27 implied run total tonight and are going up against JT Brubaker, putting them in a spot to hit a few home runs. Last season, Brubaker allowed a 4.18 xFIP, 2.12 HR/9, 36.8% fly-ball rate, and 34.8% hard-contact rate versus left-handed hitters. This is a pitcher we can actively attack and doing so via one of the best hitters is just a bonus.
Last year, Soto carried a 181 wRC+, .239 ISO, .448 wOBA, 41.5% hard-contact rate, and 26.8% HR/FB ratio versus right-handed pitchers. I simply love this matchup for Soto, who already has two home runs to start the season -- hopefully, a good sign of more things to come.
C.J. Cron To Hit a Home Run (+330)
A home run prop at Coors Field is always a good option to consider.
Coors Field is the best hitter's park in the Majors, and looking here for home runs should never be a surprise. The Colorado Rockies have a slate-high 5.70 implied run total, and I'm expecting some of that to come via home runs tonight. Justin Steele will be on the mound for the visiting Chicago Cubs, a pitcher who made his MLB debut last year. He only has 57.0 innings pitched under his belt, so it's not a large sample size, but frankly, it's not very encouraging.
Last year, Steele allowed 2.20 HR/9 with a 4.42 xFIP, 20.8% strikeout rate, and 26.8% HR/FB ratio versus right-handed hitters. There's nothing that really screams "stay away," and I'd rather side with a proven hitter over a young and unproven pitcher.
This is where we turn to C.J. Cron, who had a 144 wRC+, .273 ISO, 44.9% fly-ball rate, and 33.7% hard-contact rate versus left-handed pitchers last season. Cron has great power potential in this split, and his home run prop is one worth considering tonight.
Charlie Morton Over 5.5 Strikeouts (-104)
With a 5.5 strikeout prop tonight, Charlie Morton is worth a look tonight.
Morton posted a strong 28.6% strikeout rate last season, and that looks like it's on track to continue this season after a solid five strikeouts in 5.1 innings in his first game. He'll be up against the San Diego Padres tonight, who have plenty of power in their lineup but can also strike out a good amount.
Last season, their current roster struck out 21.6% of the time versus right-handed pitchers, which was 22nd in the league. To start this season -- in what is a very small sample size -- they have a 24.6% strikeout rate versus righties, which is the 12th worst in the league. If they are going to be sitting at the higher side of strikeouts this season, the 5.5 line for Morton is solid, so I'm going with the over tonight.