MLB NRFI/YRFI Best Bets Today: Expert Picks & Predictions for Friday’s Slate (9/15/23)

All 30 MLB teams will be in action on Friday, with postseason races heating up and Gerrit Cole looking to solidify his status as the likely AL Cy Young winner. With a full slate of games on tap, there are some great NRFI and YRFI opportunities available to bet.

Let’s take a look at some of the best NRFI and YRFI bets on the board for Friday.

MLB Best NRFI and YRFI Bets for September 15

Here’s a look at the best NRFI and YRFI bets from Friday’s slate of games.

Yankees vs. Pirates NRFI (-128)

Gerrit Cole has been dialed in over his last four starts, allowing a total of just four earned runs over that span. He should be in cruise control against his light-hitting former team.

Cole has a 2.70 ERA in the first inning, roughly in line with his overall numbers, and opposing hitters are batting just .180 with a .540 OPS in the first this season. The top of the Pirates’ lineup took a bit of a hit when on-base threat Andrew McCutchen went down, so Cole looks like a pretty safe pick.

Johan Oviedo will get the Yankees’ lineup, which just hasn’t gotten production out of its rookies aside from the now-injured Jasson Dominguez. Aaron Judge, even amid his recent struggles, is always a home run threat, but Oviedo has a respectable 0.9 HR/9 rate this season.

The first inning has been a problem for Oviedo, with opposing hitters batting .285. With the Yankees owning the league’s worst AVG and Oviedo limiting hitters to a .673 OPS over his last nine starts, though, momentum is in his favor.

Rays vs. Orioles YRFI (+100)

The Rays have been hitting pretty well since the start of August, and they’ve been a terrific first inning team all season with a .282 AVG and .830 OPS – both their highest marks of any inning. That could be a bad sign for Jack Flaherty, who has been a mess since landing with the Orioles.

Flaherty has a 7.16 ERA in six starts with Baltimore, allowing a whopping 11.4 hits per nine innings. Tampa tends to win with its power, but these Rays can hit for contact as well – especially with Yandy Diaz near the top of the lineup. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Tampa hit its way into a run or two against Flaherty early on.

The Rays are in better shape with Zach Eflin starting against the Orioles, who are top-6 in first inning runs at home. Eflin has been very steady in the first inning, but with Baltimore at home and Gunnar Henderson red hot right now, it won’t be impossible for the Orioles to strike quickly. At +100, there’s plenty of value here.

Nationals vs. Brewers NRFI (-115)

Both the Brewers and Nationals are top-10 in first inning runs per game, but the success hasn’t been there recently. Milwaukee and Washington have each scored in the first in just one of their last six games, with Christian Yelich’s struggles one major reason for the Brewers’ issues and a slide by Lane Thomas partially responsible for the Nats’ troubles. Could they combine for an NFRI on Friday? Absolutely.

Jake Irvin has quietly been pitching better for the Nationals of late and has a 3.27 ERA in the first inning this season. He also hasn’t allowed more than five hits in any of his last four starts.

Wade Miley has done an even better job of limiting hits (7.4 per nine) and has a spectacular 1.35 ERA in the first inning this season. It’s worth following the numbers with these two pitchers, as well as the way these two offenses have been hitting (or not hitting) in recent days.

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Dan is a lifelong sports fan and graduate of Boston University. He’s covered several sports on Instagram since he was 12 and now writes about everything from betting trends to breaking news for Lineups.

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