There are just 8 games on Thursday’s MLB slate. With a limited number of games to bet on, MLB bettors should look for more betting options than just run lines, over/unders and MLB player props. Take a look at an increasingly popular MLB bet: No Run First Inning (NRFI) and Yes Run First Inning (YRFI).
This article analyzes today’s NRFI and YRFI betting odds and recommends the best NRFI bets and the best YRFI bets to make on MLB games on 8/10/2023.
8/10 NRFI/YRFI Best Bets
Here are the best NRFI and YRFI bets to place on Thursday, August 10, 2023.
Nationals vs Phillies YRFI (-120 at DraftKings)
Starting pitchers: LHP Patrick Corbin (7-11, 5.03 ERA) vs. RHP Aaron Nola (9-8, 4.58 ERA)
It would be the most Aaron Nola thing ever to allow a run in the 1st inning the day after a Phillies pitcher throws a no hitter. For that reason alone, you have to like the -120 odds on a YRFI in this game.
Knowing Aaron Nola, it would probably be a home run. Nola has allowed 26 home runs this season, second most in the league, including 5 in the first inning. Two of the Nationals’ best hitters at the top of their order – Dominic Smith and Lane Thomas – have each gone yard against Nola in their careers.
Beyond just allowing a lot of homers, Nola has been disappointing this season, including his fair share of struggles early in games. He has allowed runs in the first inning in 7 of his 23 starts including 2 of his last 5. He has also had two bad outings in a row against depleted lineups in the Pirates and Royals. He’s allowed 10 earned runs in just 10 innings combined over those starts.
The Nationals may not look like the most dangerous lineup, but they have been one of the better teams in the league at scoring in the first inning this season. They are 5th in runs, 8th in OPS and 10th in wRC+ in the first inning this season.
The Phillies have also been dangerous in the opening frame, as they are 7th in runs and 12th in OPS in the first inning. More importantly, they get an even better pitching matchup against Patrick Corbin, who is having another subpar season after posting 5.82 and 6.31 ERAs over the last two seasons (62 starts).
Corbin has allowed a run in the first inning in 8 of his 23 starts this season and holds a 6.26 ERA in the opening frame. For his career, Corbin’s 5.11 ERA in the first inning is the highest of any inning, and it isn’t particularly close.
Some of the Phillies best hitters at the top of their lineup have had plenty of success against Corbin. Kyle Schwarber is hitting .357 with 2 homers in 14 at-bats, Bryce Harper .289 (38 ABs), J.T. Realmuto .344 (32 ABs) with 2 homers, and Alec Bohm .350 (20 ABs) with 2 homers.
The YRFI has hit in 2 of the 3 games so far in this series, and with these two pitchers on the mound tonight, the chances look very good to make it 3 out of 4.
Cardinals vs Rays YRFI (-125 at Caesar’s)
Starting pitchers: LHP Matthew Liberatore (1-4, 6.93 ERA) vs. RHP Zack Littell (2-2, 4.04 ERA)
You would ideally like to be getting better odds on a YRFI, but with limited options on today’s slate, this pick represents one of the best options. If you choose to tail, make sure to head over to Caesar’s to get the best odds, as DraftKings has this YRFI at -145 and BetMGM is -140.
This matchup features two of the more dangerous lineups against two inexperienced and unproven starting pitchers.
Cardinals rookie Matthew Liberatore is the more vulnerable hurler in this game, particularly given the matchup against a Rays team that drafted him 16th overall in 2018 (the Cardinals acquired him in the 2020 trade that sent Randy Arozarena to Tampa).
The 23-year-old lefty lost his spot in the Cardinals’ rotation on July 6th after four consecutive bad outings with a combined 9.82 ERA. He allowed runs in the first inning in all four of those starts and managed to record only 33 outs combined over those outings. The low point was a July 5th start in Miami in which he allowed 4 runs and retired only 1 batter.
He was recalled from Triple-A after the Cardinals traded away both Jordan Montgomery and Jack Flaherty at the trade deadline and is now battling for a spot in the Cardinals’ rotation of the future. In his first start back in the big leagues, he allowed 5 runs including 2 homers in the 2nd inning against the Twins, but otherwise showed some signs of progress.
The Rays may have cooled off from their torrid pace to start the season, but they are still dangerous early in games. Since the All-Star Break, they are 7th in runs and 10th in wRC+ in the first inning. Liberatore faces a tough task keeping them off the board in the opening frame.
On the other side, the Rays are sending reliever-turned-starter Zack Littell to the mound to make just his 6th start of the season. Littell unexpectedly maintained his spot in the rotation after the Rays acquired Aaron Civale at the deadline, thanks largely to injuries elsewhere on the staff.
While Littell has looked good in his limited opportunities as a starter, it’s hard to trust him against a Cardinals lineup that is 6th in wRC+ this season and 7th since the All-Star Break. The Cardinals may have been sellers at the deadline, but they mainly traded away pitching and only shipped out 1 core piece of their lineup (Paul DeJong).
Trust the offenses against the unproven starters in this game and take the YRFI at -125.