MLB NRFI Night in America: 2 Hermo Hammers, A YRFI and Bankroll Management Tips

Troy HermoContributor IApril 27, 2021

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler throws to a San Diego Padres batter during the third inning of a baseball game Thursday, April 22, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

Tonight and every Tuesday during the MLB season is NRFI Night in America, and we are on fire.

What's an NRFI? It's a baseball betting proposition that stands for "no-run first inning," in which you bet there will be zero runs scored in the first frame.

  • 2021 NRFI record: 52-25 (67.5%)
  • Last Week: 20-9 (69.0%)
  • As posted on Twitter @TroyHermo

What a week it has been, NRFI nation. We went 20-9, splitting our first extreme multi-unit "whale hunts," and I came to the realization I need to tighten it up units-wise or the juice will be our bankroll noose.

Nobody wants that.

I've got the research down, I have the information ready, and I'm hitting at a profitable percentage. Now it's time to execute big games. Become a big-game hunter, if you will. I've decided all Hermo Hammers will be two units. Normal plays will be 0.5-1.5 units, and plays of the month or big-game hunts will be four units. Keep it consistent, and we will keep it profitable. That's what everyone wants.

I want to help you become a better gambler, and that's deciding what unit matches your budget. I will explain that below in the bankroll and unit section. The Hermo standard.

Speaking of standard, this is our standard operating procedure. Every Tuesday, I'll sift through the first-inning stats and hitter analysis to give the best plays available on the card. You can also follow my daily plays in the B/R Betting community section. Odds for every NRFI line can be found on DraftKings.

But first, what you came here for: the locks, the hammers, the info you can't go without, especially on an NRFI Night in America.


NRFIs of the Week: The Hermo Hammer Locks

Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press

2-Unit Hammer: Cincinnati Reds (Jeff Hoffman) at Los Angeles Dodgers (Walker Buehler) -104

The return of Walker NRFI Ranger.

Walker Buehler, the legend in the making, has a 1.80 lifetime first-inning ERA. In three starts against the Cincinnati Reds, he has a 3-0 NRFI record—giving me and NRFI nation confidence he will cool off the Reds bats in the top half of the inning.

The bottom half will be the sweat. Mookie Betts is 2-for-2 versus Jeff Hoffman with two home runs. However, I'm not going to overlook Hoffman's success this year: perfect 4-0 in NRFI chances with a 0.00 first-inning ERA. We ride the hot hand and let Walker handle the rest.

Fun stat: In four starts, Buehler has faced the minimum 12 batters in the first inning. Vibey.


2-Unit Hammer: Seattle Mariners (Marco Gonzales) at Houston Astros (Cristian Javier) -107

The Scoop

  • Cristian Javier is 13-0 in NRFI opportunities.
  • Marco Gonzales has a 3.33 career first-inning ERA. Last year, he posted an impressive 2.45 ERA, and he sports a 3-1 NRFI record with a 4.50 first-inning ERA in 2021.
  • In Javier's last start against the Mariners, he struck out the side in the first inning.
  • Gonzales has a 5-3 NRFI record when facing the Astros.


1-Unit Play: Minnesota Twins (Kenta Maeda) at Cleveland (Aaron Civale) -124

Tony Avelar/Associated Press

The Scoop

  • Kenta Maeda is as comfortable as can be in a Twins uniform in the first inning. In 2020, he had a fantastic 2.45 first-inning ERA. He is even better with a perfect 0.00 ERA in four starts in 2021. The top five batters in the Cleveland lineup hit a combined .204 versus Maeda.
  • Aaron Civale, or as I called him last year "Cigar Civale," led me and NRFI nation to some big wins last year. Has a 3.12 career first-inning ERA.


YRFI of the Day (Yes, I Play the Opposite of the NRFI If the Stats Are Right)

Detroit Tigers (Jose Urena) at Chicago White Sox (Lucas Giolito) +102

The Scoop

  • Jose Urena has struggled in the first in his career with a 5.44 ERA. Last year, that was especially on display with a 10.80 first-inning ERA. While he has only a 4.50 ERA this year, he does not look confident. The Chicago White Sox's red-hot bats will continue to roll, as they average 0.8 runs in the first, which ranks third in MLB, according to TeamRankings.com.
  • Lucas Giolito, despite showing great poise and brilliance in 2020, had a 6.00 first-inning ERA. For his career, it's not any better: 6.24. You'd think the ace would turn it around, but in four 2021 starts, it sits at a whopping 11.25.


Bankroll Management and Deciding What a Unit Should Be: The Hermo 3 Percent Rule

Rule No. 1: No max bet should ever exceed 3 percent of your monthly wages. This will help you find your base unit measurement.

Example: For $4,000 per month in wages, 3 percent would be $120. Let's say a max bet for the average bettor is five units, so divide $120 by five, and you get $24. So $24 is your base unit. So when I say one unit, you will be playing $24. This will keep the risk low and keep it at an affordable rate. I catch myself on really good matchups wanting to push the envelope. But it's best to stay the course and always go back to this system. If you want to bet more, make more.

Rule No. 2: Parlays are fun, but they should never be taken as serious investment opportunities. Max bet is 1 percent of monthly wages.

Example: For $4,000 per month salary, 1 percent would be $40. So you could do $5 Hail Mary parlays on NRFI Night in America. Parlays in the long run are not profitable. But they are fun in group settings, on holidays and on NFL Sundays to spice up the vibes. Just don't let it be everything in your portfolio. You would rather have a profitable 2-1 day then an unprofitable one because you got carried away and put a half-unit prayer in your can't-miss parlay.

Rule No. 3: No matter what I say or what you read from experts, do what's right for you.

I played blackjack one night with my dad and his friend Randy. We played with on old fisherman who had just got back from a six-month Deadliest Catch-style fishing trip. He was drunk and loaded. Playing table max all night. The guy would yell out "Yee-haw!" like a drunk cowboy when the table won. He was a vibe machine. The favorite thing I learned from him that night came after he doubled down on 12 and lost. He looked at me and said, "It's not about the money; it's about what's in your heart," and pounded his chest.

He cashed out that night for well over $5,000. Even if we screeched every time he made a bet with low odds, he gambled with his heart and came out a winner.

Let's win responsibly and remember this is always for fun. As a family. As a nation.

America's game.
America's bet.
Six outs to glory.
NRFI nation.

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