Blue Jays, Rays American League Best Bets for September 20

There are multiple games tonight on the American League schedule, and there’s value to be found. Below, you can find our AL best bets from FanDuel Sportsbook.

Houston Astros (+112) vs. Tampa Bay Rays (-132) Total: 6.5 (O-120, U-102)

The Houston Astros and Tampa Bay Rays are set to collide for Game 2 of a three-game series tonight from Tropicana Field. The visiting Astros opened things up with a 4-0 shutout last night and clinched the AL West. It’s hard to know what type of lineup you’ll see from the Astros after clinching last night, meaning you could have many starters on the bench tonight. That should benefit the Rays, who need all the wins they can get down the stretch to try and finish as the top wild card team in the American League. Entering this matchup, the Astros have posted an 8-2 record over their past ten games, while the Rays have been struggling to put together much of any consistency and are 4-6 over that same stretch. The one thing this matchup has going for is pitching, which is evident by the low total set at just 6.5. 

Pitching has been a strength of both these ballclubs this season, and that should be a pivotal storyline to watch for in this matchup again tonight. The visiting Astros are expected to send right-hander Cristian Javier to the bump, while the Rays will be countering left-hander Shane McClanahan. The Astros starter has posted a 9-9 record, with a very nice 2.87 ERA and 173 strikeouts, while McClanahan is 12-5 with a 2.13 ERA and 187 punchouts. It’s not difficult to see this being a low-scoring affair with these two high-quality starters on the mound. Last night, both clubs also had a difficult time scoring runs, and that should continue tonight with this great pitching matchup. 

With the Astros clinching the division last night, you’re not going to get the best versions of their players tonight, and that should benefit the Rays, who also happen to have an AL Cy Young candidate on the bump. In saying that, it’s hard to ignore the solid value that the Rays are presenting tonight as the home team on the moneyline, which is currently priced at a nice number of -132. 

Best Bet: Rays moneyline (-132)

Toronto Blue Jays (-118) vs. Philadelphia Phillies (+100) Total: 8.5 (O-115, U-105)

The Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies are set to face off tonight for Game 1 of a two-game series from Citizens Bank Ballpark. The Blue Jays enter this matchup after taking two-of-three games from the Baltimore Orioles, while the Phillies were swept in a three-game set against the Atlanta Braves. Toronto has posted a 6-4 record over their past ten games, while the Phillies are 5-5 over that same stretch of games but have now lost four straight contests. The Blue Jays currently occupy the top wild card position in the American League, while the Phillies are hanging onto the third wild card spot in the National League. Both teams know very well how crucial these matchups will be with under 18 games remaining on the schedule. The need for victories is paramount if they hope to qualify for the postseason. 

Pitching has been a strength of these two clubs in 2022, but you’re set to see two lower-end rotation starters tonight, which could lead to some runs scored. In saying that, the Blue Jays are set to start right-hander Ross Stripling, but he’s actually been a pleasant surprise in their rotation, while the Phillies will counter with veteran Kyle Gibson. The Blue Jays starter has posted an 8-4 record, paired with a 2.94 ERA and 102 strikeouts, while Gibson is 10-6 with a 4.45 ERA and 125 punchouts. Even though Stripling might not have the better track record in his career, he’s still been effective on the mound and should give Toronto an edge in this series opener. 

With the Phillies’ struggles of late and the Blue Jays bats slowly but surely figuring things out, it’s hard to avoid the value the visitors are presenting tonight on the moneyline. The Blue Jays are currently priced at -118, and there’s definite value in those odds on tonight’s slate of games. 

Best Bet: Blue Jays moneyline (-118)