MLB Free Picks Today, 4/15: NRFI & YRFI best bets Monday - Not your average Joes

San Diego Padres starting pitcher Joe Musgrove (44) throws a pitch against the Kansas City Royals in the first inning at Kauffman Stadium.
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Ricky Dimon


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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports -- just about any and all you can think of! -- and coaching tennis in Atlanta, GA. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me. For Ricky Dimon media enquiries, please email
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A new week in Major League Baseball gets underway with a full 15-game schedule on Monday. It includes a rematch of the 2021 World Series between Atlanta and Houston, while the Yankees are paying a visit to Toronto. The YRFI/NRFI market has become extremely popular in baseball betting. After all, you don’t have to sit around for 3 hours (or maybe a lot less now that games are not as long on average!) to see if your wager hits; the satisfaction (or in some cases disappointment) is immediate. It all comes down to the first inning. Here are my favorite YRFI/NRFI plays for Monday, and also be sure to check out all of our MLB picks for today’s matchups.

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San Diego Padres vs Milwaukee Brewers: NRFI (-115) 

Joe Musgrove is taking the mound on Monday, which should be good news for the Padres. The right-hander has by no means been lights out so far in 2024, but his 2 April starts have been solid following a rough first 2 outings of the season. It’s also worth noting that Musgrove has been clean in the first inning in each of his past 2 appearances. The veteran is going up against a relatively potent Milwaukee offense in this one, but nobody in that lineup has ever done anything notable against him.

The Brewers are countering with Joe Ross. The right-hander has been outstanding through 2 starts this year, with a 1-0 record and 1.80 ERA to go along with 10.0 strikeouts and 10.0 innings. San Diego’s offense has been mediocre through a few weeks, with 90 runs scored in 17 contests. Fernando Tatis Jr. (2 singles) is the only player on the Padres who has ever gotten a hit off Ross. Give me the NRFI.

St. Louis Cardinals vs Oakland Athletics: YRFI (-105)

With the A’s involved, it’s safe to day we’re relying on St. Louis to get the job done. I have full confidence in the Cardinals doing just that at the expense of Ross Stripling. The right-hander has lost all 3 of his starts and is saddled with a 5.50 ERA in addition to a 1.72 WHIP. In 2 of his 3 outings in 2024 he has allowed not 1 first-inning run, but a ridiculous 3. Nolan Arenado is 7-for-15 lifetime against Stripling with a homer and 2 doubles; Paul Goldschmidt is 7-for-19 with 2 bombs and a pair of doubles.

Sonny Gray will in all likelihood blank the A’s, although they do have several guys who have enjoyed success off him in a limited sample size. Seth Brown is 2-for-7, Nick Allen is 1-for-1 and Tyler Nevin, JJ Bleday and Zack Gelof are all 1-for-2. But, let’s be honest – by the time Oakland comes to bat this YRFI bet should have already cashed. 


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