Braves vs. Pirates MLB Best Bet: Take Advantage of Sunday’s Fire Sale in Pittsburgh

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Chris Sale #51 of the Atlanta Braves pitches in the first inning against the Boston Red Sox at Truist Park on May 08, 2024. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images/AFP

We have a full Sunday slate of 15 MLB betting matchups for Memorial Day weekend, with the action starting early at 11:35 AM ET. We are here with the three plays we feel have the most betting value at the current MLB odds offered by the top-rated sportsbooks.

These value-bets are based mostly on our proprietary model, and we have a play at 1:35 PM ET where the model favors a side in the Braves vs. Pirates matchup.

Check out our other two MLB best bets for more of today’s content.

MLB Best Bet: Braves ML (-210) at Heritage Sports (visit our Heritage Sports Review)

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Braves ML (-210)
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Atlanta Braves vs. Pittsburgh Pirates

Sunday, May 26, 2024 – 01:35 PM ET at PNC Park

Normally, we are not fans of betting prohibitive favorites, but with the Braves looking to avoid getting swept by the sub-.500 Pirates and holding a huge pitching advantage, we are doing it with Chris Sale facing Martin Perez.

Dominating Again

Sale has been injury-plagued while not making 25 starts in a season since 2019. However, he has been healthy so far in his first season in Atlanta and he has closely resembled the dominant pitcher he was before all the injuries.

Chris is 7-1 with a sparkling 2.22 ERA, and more importantly, he is second in the Major Leagues among pitchers with over 50 innings with a 2.38 xFIP. His average velocity of 95.0 MPH is at its highest point since 2018 and he still has the great command he has always had. As a result, he has an outstanding K/BB ratio of 11.12/1.27 per nine innings.

And even when he is not striking people out, batters are not getting good swings against him as evidenced by his spectacular soft/hard contact ratio of 25.2% / 19.4%.

More Realistic

Perez had a history of overachieving before last season with his ERA continuously outperforming his weaker underlying metrics. However, that was not as pronounced last year although he overachieved slightly with his 4.45 ERA and 4.96 xFIP. And now things have swung slightly the other way this season with a 4.80 ERA and 4.30 xFIP.

Regardless, Martin is still the 4.50 ERA type he has always been with his actual ERA finally starting to mirror his metrics. 

He has a typically weak K/BB ratio of 7.29/2.82 per nine innings and a poot soft/hard contact rare of 14.8% / 33.0%. And that hard contact has resulted in a lot of home runs allowed at 1.49/9.

MLB Best Bet

The southpaw is facing an Atlanta offense that is safely above average in wRC+ against left-handers at 110.

We see this as a humongous pitching mismatch, so go ahead and lay the enormous odds with the Braves to avoid the sweep.

Predicted Score: Braves 6 – Pirates 2

MLB Best Bet: Braves ML (-210) at Heritage Sports

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Braves ML (-210)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.