Top MLB No Runs First Inning (NRFI) Picks & Odds for Tuesday, August 2 (2022)

Aug 2, 2022 - 1:16 PM

Well, yesterday was a day of regression as we went 0-2 on our NRFIs. However, the good news is that we can only go up from there, and that begins today. So, let’s get back on track and dive into our top NRFI plays of the slate.

Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Cleveland Guardians 7:10 pm ET

This is a sneaky contender for the best pitching matchup of the night, as getting the ball for Cleveland will be Triston McKenzie. McKenzie enters this outing after a fantastic month of July. He went 3-1 with a 1.34 ERA and posted a 0.83 WHIP over the last month. Tonight he gets to face an Arizona lineup that just got quite a bit weaker as they traded away veteran outfielder David Peralta yesterday. On top of that, Arizona has not got it going in the first inning lately. They have failed to score in the first in their past three games and are now 22nd in first-inning runs per game on the year. McKenzie should roll through this Arizona order in the top of the first as he’s been excellent in the first inning this season. Through 18 starts, he has a 2.50 ERA and 0.89 WHIP. That is just what you want when targeting a pitcher for an NRFI.

However, the man opposing him hasn’t been all too bad himself as Diamondbacks ace Zac Gallen toe the slab tonight. Gallen has been a steady force for Arizona this year as he enters with a 3.24 ERA and 1.01 WHIP, and if you thought McKenzie was good in the first inning, just look at Gallen’s numbers. He has a 1.42 ERA with 0.68 WHIP and has struck out over a batter an inning through 19 starts this season. Now the Guardians are 10th in the majors in first-inning runs per game, but that is because they make a ton of contact and excel at creating traffic on the bases with the top of their lineup. Though Gallen is a perfect match for them as he has swing and miss stuff, what he does best is create soft contact and quick outs. So look for him to navigate the traffic at worst in the bottom half of the first inning.

Pick: NRFI -129

Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves 7:20 pm ET

It will be a bullpen game for the Phillies and their opener of choice of right-hander Nick Nelson. Nelson has been one of the few consistent arms out of the Philadelphia bullpen this season, as he holds a 3.94 ERA and 1.31 WHIP. This has been Nelson’s best professional season by far as he’s been very tough to square up, and that’s displayed in his barrel and hard-hit rates that rank in the top 15 percent of all qualified pitchers. However, the Braves have actually seen Nelson twice this season and put up a run in each of his outings against them, but Nelson is due to improve as his FIP is 2.95, which should make this third outing the charm for him.

Taking the ball for the Braves will be rookie sensation, Spencer Strider. Strider has begun to run away in the NL Rookie of the Year race as he’s just been head and shoulders above the competition. He comes into this start with a 2.91 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP, but he also has racked up 120 strikeouts over 80 innings of work. The first innings have gone very well for Strider as his stuff is difficult for every lineup the first time through. He holds a 2.45 ERA and 0.73 WHIP through 11 starts. Strider has also dominated the Phillies in his young career. Philadelphia is hitting just .103 with a 34.4 percent strikeout rate against Strider this year. His dominance should continue tonight.

Pick: NRFI -120

CTA MLB Prop Bet

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