A full slate of baseball action marks the official return for most teams in the sport. Some teams were red hot before the break, while others desperately needed some time off. Either way, there is plenty of value in the first innings. Be it a No Run First Inning or a Yes Run First Inning bet, the aim is to combine recent hitting and pitching trends, ballpark data, and the first inning moneyline tool at OddsShopper. Here are the top value plays for tonight’s action with the best NRFI bets for Friday, July 22.
Best NRFI Bets Today: No Run First Inning Picks 7/22
Padres vs. Mets Pick | Claim $200 FREE at BetMGM
The return of Max Scherzer has been as expected, helping the Mets to two wins in three starts and leading to three earned runs total from Scherzer over that stretch. New York also benefits more in the first inning at home than any other team in baseball. The Mets average a league-leading 0.84 runs per first inning (RPFI) at Citi Field, including one in their last game. Yu Darvish comes off a road start against the Dodgers where he surrendered a run in the first, as he has in three of his eight starts away from San Diego this year. The Padres may sit this one out against Scherzer, with San Diego averaging just 0.29 RPFI on the road, but they also give up 0.50 RPFI while traveling. OddsShopper has the Mets as a heavy -150 favorite to win the first inning.
Best NRFI Bet Today: Padres vs. Mets YRFI (+125 BetMGM)
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Cubs vs. Phillies Pick | Claim $200 FREE at BetMGM
Chicago needed a win against the Mets right before the break just to stop a nine-game skid. Things have not gone well overall for the Cubs this year, except for scoring in the first inning. Chicago averages 0.57 RPFI on the road, which is top 10 across MLB, but it has been blanked in each of their last three games. Justin Steele takes the mound for the first time in his career against this Phillies team and should get the benefit of the first inning. He has a decent strikeout rate of just under 22%, enough to get through the first inning. Kyle Gibson is pitching more to contact but has given up a first inning run in just two of his nine starts at home this year. OddsShopper has the Phillies with just a slight edge to win the first inning.
Best NRFI Bet Today: Cubs vs. Phillies NRFI (-105 BetMGM)
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Guardians vs. White Sox Pick | Claim $200 FREE at BetMGM
The Guardians are one of baseball’s better teams when it comes to giving up RPFI, with a 0.43 average on the road. The White Sox are a little worse at home, giving up 0.73 RPFI to visitors — second worst in all of baseball. It would take a significantly stronger pitching matchup than tonight’s Cal Quantrill – Lucas Giolito billing for either team to get a boost in limiting early scoring. Giolito has been more feast or famine, with a strikeout rate of 27.1% but an ERA of 4.69 — giving up a first inning run in three of his six home starts this season. The White Sox average just 0.39 RPFI at home but are at a 0.67 rate over their last three games, while the Guardians average 0.52 RPFI on the road and are on a recent tear, averaging 2.00 RPFI over their last three games. There will be plenty of scoring opportunities for tonight’s first inning.
Best NRFI Bet Today: Guardians vs. White Sox YRFI (-110 BetMGM)
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