MLB picks Wednesday, 9/13 - YRFI & NRFI best bets today: Business is booming for Braves and Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies left fielder Kyle Schwarber (12) hits an RBI single during the eighth inning against the Oakland Athletics at Citizens Bank Park.
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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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The week in Major League Baseball continues with a full 15-game slate on Wednesday. There are 4 afternoon specials on the schedule and the it wraps up with the Padres paying a visit to the Dodgers at 10:10 pm ET.

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 Wednesday, and also be sure to check out all of our MLB picks.

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Atlanta Braves vs Philadelphia Phillies: YRFI (-113)

A price of -113 is just about the cheapest you will find on the YRFI these days when Atlanta is involved. The Braves lead Major League Baseball in runs scored by a country mile and they have a great chance to add to those numbers today. They can also clinch the National League East title. The magic number is 2 and since it’s second-place Philadelphia that is the opponent, Atlanta will clinch with a win. Needless to say, the visitors are going to come out playing inspired baseball. They are facing Christopher Sanchez, who has been in decent form this season but is automatically a good matchup for the Braves since he is left-handed. They are hitting an amazing .293 against southpaws in 2023.

Both of these teams have been raking. So far in this series the scores have been 10-8 Atlanta, 7-5 Philadelphia and 7-6 Atlanta. The YRFI has cashed on 2 of 3 occasions with a total of 5 first-inning runs scored. Another high-scoring affair can be expected even though Spencer Strider is starting for the Braves. Strider has slumped of late, with 10 earned runs allowed in his last 2 outings. He allowed at least 1 first-inning run in both of those contests, including 4 to St. Louis last week. The Phillies are obviously quite familiar with Strider as division rivals and multiple guys near the top of the lineup have enjoyed some success against the right-hander. I wouldn’t be surprised if both teams cross the plate right away.

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Texas Rangers vs Toronto Blue Jays: NRFI (-111)

Neither of these teams is anything special when it comes to scoring first-inning runs. The Rangers are #10 in Major League Baseball in that department but a dreadful 26th on the road. That latter mark is where the Blue Jays come in overall this season and they have gone an amazing 9 consecutive contests without scoring a single first-inning run. Texas has put up opening-frame goose-eggs in 4 straight games.

The pitching matchup is such that those woes can be expected to continue. Yusei Kikuchi is 9-5 with a 3.57 ERA for Toronto and after compiling a 3.03 ERA in August he is sporting a 2.79 ERA through 2 September appearances. The lefty has made 3 starts in a row without surrendering a first-inning run. Texas is countering with Jordan Montgomery, who comes in with a clean 3.62 ERA. Montgomery has delivered opening-frame zeroes in 5 of his past 6 outings and he blanked the Blue Jays in the first inning in his only previous start against them in 2023 (when he was with St. Louis). I’ll happily roll with the NRFI in this one.

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