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April 4th MLB Odds and Picks – Ohtani Makes Season Pitching Debut

John Perrotto

by John Perrotto in MLB Baseball

Apr 4, 2021 · 6:37 AM PDT

Michael Pineda throwing pitch
Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Michael Pineda (35) delivers during a spring training baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays Wednesday, March 24, 2021, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
  • There are 12 games on the MLB schedule on Sunday, April 4th
  • Season record: 2-4 with -265 loss (based on $100 wagered per unit)
  • See predictions and best bets for Sunday’s games, below

Sunday’s holiday slate of 12 games includes Shohei Ohtani’s first pitching appearance of the season.

Ohtani will start for the Los Angeles Angels at home against the Chicago White Sox on Sunday. The two-way player made 10 starts in 2018 and went 4-2 with a 3.31 ERA while winning American League Rookie of the Year.

However, Ohtani injured his elbow that season and underwent Tommy John reconstructive surgery. He did not pitch in 2019 then made just two starts last season totaling 1.2 innings.

At -250, the Los Angeles Dodgers are the day’s biggest favorites as they visit the Colorado Rockies. A pair of lefties will pitch as the Dodgers’ Julio Urias faces the Rockies’ Austin Gomber.

April 4 MLB Picks

Matchup Pick and Odds at DraftKings Units Risked
Twins vs Brewers Twins -112 1 unit
Cardinals vs Reds Reds -106 1 unit
Twins vs Brewers Under 8 (-106) 1 unit

Odds as of April 4th.

Pick 1: Twins -112 (1.5 units)

The Minnesota Twins’ Michael Pineda is a normal starting pitcher again for the first time since 2017.

Pineda missed the 2018 season while recovering from Tommy John surgery. He was eased back into action as a piggyback starter in 2019 then limited to five outings last season after serving a suspension when he tested positive for a performance enhancing drug.

Pineda was good the over the two years. In 31 starts, the equivalent of a full season, he had a 13-5 record and 3.91 ERA.

The Twins have high hopes for him in 2021.

Adrian Houser starts for the Brewers. He was surprisingly locked into a rotation spot from the beginning of spring training despite a 2020 season that saw him go 1-6 with a 5.30 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in 12 games.

Houser has generated more attention for throwing up behind the mound before some starts than getting hitters out.

Pick 2: Reds -106 (1 unit)

The over might seem like the play here but fading the St. Louis Cardinals’ Carlos Martinez looks like a good bet.

Martinez was a premier pitcher from 2015-18, going 50-33 with a 3.22 ERA in 127 games. He moved to the bullpen in 2019 to fill a need and had 24 saves.

However, Martinez struggled mightily in his return to the rotation last season, going 0-3 with a 9.90 ERA in five starts. He did not pitch much better this year in spring training with a 5.66 ERA after giving up 13 runs in 20.1 innings.

Jeff Hoffman gets a chance to reboot his career with the Cincinnati Reds after five mainly dismal seasons with the Rockies in which he was 10-16 with a 6.40 ERA in 68 games.

Hoffman has long had the reputation of having a good arm. The results obviously haven’t been there, but the 28-year-old gets a chance to revise his story.

Pick 3: Twins-Brewers under 8, -106 (1 unit)

In the Twins’ 2-0 over the Brewers on Saturday night, it marked the first time two starting pitchers had no-hitters through six innings in a major league game since 2014.

The Brewers’ Corbin Burnes lost his bid when Byron Buxton led off the seventh inning with a homer.

The Twins’ Jose Berrios was pulled after six innings by manager Rocco Baldelli. The Brewers finally broke through in the eighth inning when Omar Narvaez singled off Tyler Duffey.

With Pineda on the mound against Houser – hey, the Brewers must see something in him – look for runs to be at a premium again.

The last duo to have double no-nos through six? The New York Mets’ Jacob deGrom and San Francisco Giants’ Jake Peavy.

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