Top MLB Betting Picks of the Week (August 15th, 2022)

By Hank Blaine

We’re midway through August, as we get closer to the postseason. There are many teams that have their seasons locked in, while others are still struggling to keep it alive. We take a look at the top games that could define the future for these teams.

Top MLB Betting Picks of the Week (August 15th, 2022)

San Diego Padres vs. Miami Marlins

  • When: Monday, August 16, 2022, 6:40 PM ET
  • Where: Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago, IL
  • TV: Bally Sports San Diego, Bally Sports Florida
  • Radio: KWFN 97.3 (Padres) / FOX Sports 940AM (Reds)
  • Live Stream: MLB.tv
  • MLB Betting Odds: Padres (-147) // Marlins (+127)

So much for the San Diego Padres winning their first-ever World Series. There was shocking news over the weekend that Padres superstar Fernando Tatis Jr. tested positive for a performance-enhancing substance and was hit by Major League Baseball with an 80-game suspension. Tatis Jr. hadn’t played yet this season off a wrist injury but was close to making his return. That’s all moot now. He’ll not only miss the rest of this year but also the first month or so of next year.

Tatis, who could lose close to $3 million in salary with the suspension, issued a 198-word statement in which he said he “inadvertently took a medication to treat ringworm that contained Clostebol.”

Padres general manager A.J. Preller boosted his roster ahead of the trade deadline earlier this month, adding sluggers Juan Soto and Josh Bell from the Nationals, closer Josh Hader from the Milwaukee Brewers and infielder Brandon Drury from the Cincinnati Reds.

Few individual Padres are impacted more by the suspension news than Trent Grisham, as Tatis was expected to play center field at least part-time upon his return. Now that job is clear again full-time for Grisham, a former Gold Glove winner who has struggled offensively all season.

Manager Bob Melvin figures those new faces will help make the absence of Tatis for the remainder of this season (along with the start of next season) easier to deal with.

“We like our team very much,” Melvin said. “If somebody got injured along the way here, we’d still feel good about our team. So that’s kind of how you have to treat the Tatis situation.”

San Diego continues a road trip in Miami early this week before returning home on Thursday to host the Nationals. The Padres’ schedule is pretty easy the rest of this month. They aren’t catching the Dodgers for the NL West title so it’s Wild Card or bust.

MLB Betting Pick: Marlins

Houston Astros vs. Chicago White Sox

  • When: Tuesday, August 16, 2022, 7:15 PM ET
  • Where: Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago, IL
  • TV: ATT SportsNet-SW, NBCSCH
  • Radio: KBME 790 AM (Astros) / WMVP 1000 AM (Reds)
  • Live Stream: MLB.tv
  • MLB Betting Odds: Astros (-127) // White Sox (+110)

No question the best pitching matchup this week is this Tuesday game between Houston and Chicago as the two AL Cy Young betting favorites, Justin Verlander of the Astros and Dylan Cease of the White Sox, face off.

Verlander (15-3, 1.85 ERA, 134 Ks) is the -155 favorite to win his third career Cy Young. The right-hander allowed three runs on five hits over six innings while taking a no-decision in last Wednesday’s 10-inning loss to the Rangers. A quality start for Verlander, though he was lined up for a loss when he left the mound, with a game-tying homer by Yordan Alvarez in the seventh saving him from an L. The start snapped a string of seven consecutive outings with two or fewer runs allowed.

Cease (12-5, 1.96 ERA, 174 Ks) has allowed one or no earned runs in 14 straight starts, extending his major-league record (previous mark was 12). Cease is 8-3 with a 0.66 ERA (6 ER/82.0 IP), 103 strikeouts and a .172 (50-290) opponents’ average during that stretch. His 0.66 ERA is the fourth-best mark in MLB (since 1913) over any 14-start stretch. His 1.98 overall ERA is the third-lowest mark by a Sox pitcher through 23 starts of a season since 1920, trailing only Gary Peters (1.52 in 1963) and Wilbur Wood (1.94 in 1971).

Cease is attempting to become the fourth pitcher in White Sox history to win the Cy Young Award, joining Early Wynn (1959), LaMarr Hoyt (1983) and Jack McDowell (1993).

The White Sox rank fourth in the major leagues with 12 shutouts this season, trailing only the Mets (15), Yankees (14) and Angels (13). The 12 shutouts also are tied for the third-highest total by the Sox since 1974, trailing only the 2011 (14) and 2021 (13) pitching staffs.

Houston defeated the Sox in four games in the 2021 ALDS, while the Sox recorded a sweep in the 2005 World Series over the Astros. Chicago remains without All-Star shortstop Tim Anderson and excellent outfielder Luis Robert missed the final two games over the weekend due to a sprained left wrist, but he’s still considered day-to-day and is expected to return to the White Sox lineup early in the week.

MLB Betting Pick: Astros

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*All odds stated are subject to change without prior notice.

READ MORE: Top MLB Betting Picks of the Week (August 22nd, 2022)