MLB betting trends, odds and predictions for Wednesday, August 16th, 2017 from various handicappers and websites
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Giants @ Marlins
Cain is 0-2, 6.75 in his last four starts, last three of which went over. Giants are 2-8 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 6-13-1
Urena is 1-1, 2.33 in his last three starts; under is 4-1-1 in his last six. Miami is 5-5 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 10-6-3
Giants lost three of last five games; under is 6-2 in their last eight games. Miami won six of its last seven home games; under is 8-4-1 in their last 13 games.
Pirates @ Brewers
Cole is 3-1, 2.65 in his last five starts; under is 4-2-1 in his last seven. Pirates won his last seven road starts — their first 5-inning record with him: 7-12-5
Nelson is 1-2, 5.76 in his last five starts; under is 6-2 in his last eight. Milwaukee is 5-1 in his last six home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 10-12-2
Pirates are 4-10 in last 14 road games; their last four games stayed under. Milwaukee won its last three games; over is 4-2-1 in their last seven games.
Reds @ Cubs
Bailey is 2-4, 8.90 in his last six starts (over 5-1). Cincy is 4-2 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 3-6-1
Lackey is 5-0, 3.76 in his last five starts; over is 4-2-1 in his last seven. Cubs are 6-4 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 7-13-2
Reds lost four of last six road games; nine of their last ten games went over total. Cubs are 5-8 in last 13 games; over is 5-3 in their last eight home games.
Braves @ Rockies
Foltynewicz is 1-2, 8.31 in his last three starts; over is 5-1 in his last six. Braves are 5-7 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 8-8-6
Gray is 1-1, 3.28 in his last four starts; under is 5-3-2 in his last ten. Colorado won all four of his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 6-4-1
Braves lost six of last eight games; over is 14-4-1 in their last 19 road games. Colorado lost five of last eight games; under is 11-2-1 in their last 14 games.
Phillies @ Padres
Pivetta is 1-2, 8.44 in his last four starts; over is 5-1 in his last six. Phillies are 3-7 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 6-9-2
Richard is 0-4, 7.90 in his last six starts; under is 2-0-1 in his last three. San Diego is 0-5 in his last five home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 10-13-1
Phillies lost five of last six games; under is 6-4 in their last ten road games. San Diego is 7-2 in its last nine home games; seven of their last eight games went over.
Rays @ Blue Jays
Faria is 0-2, 5.06 in his last three starts; under is 5-1-1 in his last seven. Rays are 5-1 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 7-3-2
Stroman is 1-1, 3.98 in his last six starts; over is 3-1 in his last four. Toronto is 7-5 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 12-11-1
Rays lost eight of last 11 games (shut out 5 times); under is 11-2 in their last 13 games. Toronto won six of last nine home games; under is 6-2 in their last eight games.
Tigers @ Rangers
Sanchez is 1-3, 8.84 in his last four starts (over 3-1). Detroit is 2-3 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 5-4-1
Hamels is 3-0, 2.89 in his last four starts; over is 8-4-1 in his last 13 starts. Texas is 4-2 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 12-0-2
Detroit lost nine of last 11 games; over is 5-1-1 in their last seven. Rangers won five of last six games; under is 6-4-1 in their last 11 home games.
Indians @ Twins
Carrasco is 1-1, 4.55 in his last five starts (over 4-1). Indians are 9-4 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 15-6-1
Gibson is 1-3, 6.59 in his last five starts; under is 6-2 in his last nine. Minnesota is 4-7 in his last 11 starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 8-11-1
Indians won their last five games; under is 6-0-2 in their last eight games. Minnesota won seven of its last nine games (over 4-1-4).
Royals @ A’s
Duffy is 0-2, 6.16 in his last three starts; under is 5-2 in his last seven. Royals are 4-7 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 6-9-4
Blackburn is 2-0, 4.34 in his last three starts; under is 3-1 in his last four. A’s are 3-1 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 4-2-2
Royals won three of their last four games; three of their last five games stayed under. Oakland lost 11 of last 17 home games (under 11-5-1).
Orioles @ Mariners
Jimenez is 1-1, 1.93 in his last three starts; under is 5-3 in his last eight. Baltimore is 4-6 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 7-9-2
Gonzales is 0-0, 6.48 in two starts this year (over 2-0). Mariners lost his only home start— their first 5-inning record with him: 2-0
Baltimore won 11 of last 18 games; under is 10-5 in their last 15. Mariners lost five of their last six games; over is 6-4 in their last ten.
Bronx @ Mets
Garcia is 0-1, 7.84 in two starts for New York (under 2-0). New York lost his only road start— their first 5-inning record with him: 0-2
Lugo is 0-1, 7.31 in his last three starts; over is 6-1 in his last seven. Mets are 2-2 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 6-3-2
Mets lost three of last four games; under is 7-4-1 in their last 12 games. Bronx is 6-4 in its last ten games; under is 13-5 in their last 18 games.
Diamondbacks @ Astros
Walker is 0-4, 5.35 in his last six starts; over is 3-1 in his last four. Arizona is 5-4 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 8-7-4
Morton is 2-1, 3.51 in his last four starts; over is 9-4-1 in his last 14 starts. Houston is 7-4 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 10-5-2
Astros lost six of last eight games; under is 4-2-1 in their last seven games. Houston is 3-6 in last nine home series openers. Arizona lost five of last seven games; over is 4-2 in their last six road games. Diamondbacks are 11-7 in road series openers.
Angels @ Nationals
Nolasco is 1-1, 5.73 in his last four starts; over is 4-1 in his last five. Angels are 3-9 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 8-12-4
Roark is 3-0, 3.20 in his last four starts; under is 5-1 in his last six. Washington is 5-5 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 10-9-2
Angels won six of their last seven games; under is 6-2 in their last eight. Washington won seven of last nine games; their last five games stayed under.
Cardinals @ Red Sox
Lynn is 4-0, 1.66 in his last seven starts; under is 7-1 in his last eight. St Louis is 6-7 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 12-10-2
Rodriguez is 0-0, 3.38 in his last three starts; under is 4-1 in his last five. Boston is 5-1 in his home starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 8-7
Cardinals won eight of last ten games; their last eight games went over. Boston won 11 of last 13 games; under is 6-3-1 in their last ten.
White Sox @ Dodgers
Rodon is 0-0, 2.01 in his last three starts (under 3-0). Chicago is 1-3 in his road starts— their first 5-inning record with him: 2-6
Darvish is 2-0, 1.50 in two starts for LA (over 1-1). Dodgers’ first 5-inning record with him: 2-0
White Sox are 1-10 in last 11 road games; under is 8-2 in their last ten games. Dodgers are 10-1 in last 11 games; three of their last five games went over.
Record with this pitcher starting
SF-Mia: Cain 8-12; Urena 13-6
Pitt-Mil: Cole 16-9; Nelson 12-12
Cin-Cubs: Bailey 4-6; Lackey 13-9 (6-0 last 6)
Atl-Colo: Foltynewicz 13-9; Gray 7-4
Phil-SD: Pivetta 5-12; Richard 8-16
TB-Tor: Faria 8-4; Stroman 14-10
Det-Tex: Sanchez 5-5; Hamels 8-6
Clev-Minn: Carrasco 16-7; Gibson 10-10
KC-A’s: Duffy 8-11; Blackburn 5-3
Balt-Sea: Jimenez 10-8; Gonzales 1-1
NY-NY Garcia 1-1 (8-9); Lugo 7-4
Az-Hst: Walker 10-9 (0-6 last 6); Morton 10-7
LAA-Wsh: Nolasco 7-17; Roark 13-8
StL-Bos: Lynn 13-11; Rodriguez 9-6
CWS-LA: Rodon 3-5; Darvish 2-0 (9-13)
Pitchers allowing a run in first inning
SF-Mia: Cain 8-20; Urena 3-19
Pitt-Mil: Cole 9-25; Nelson 4-24
Cin-Cubs: Bailey 6-10; Lackey 11-22
Atl-Colo: Foltynewicz 4-22; Gray 2-11
Phil-SD: Pivetta 6-17; Richard 8-24
TB-Tor: Faria 2-12; Stroman 4-24
Det-Tex: Sanchez 1-10; Hamels 5-14
Clev-Minn: Carrasco 4-23; Gibson 6-20
KC-A’s: Duffy 5-19; Blackburn 1-8
Balt-Sea: Jimenez 6-18; Gonzales 0-2
NY-NY Garcia 5-19; Lugo 4-11
Az-Hst: Walker 6-19; Morton 3-17
LAA-Wsh: Nolasco 9-24; Roark 8-21
StL-Bos: Lynn 7-24; Rodriguez 4-15
CWS-LA: Rodon 3-8; Darvish 7-24
SF-Mia: Marhley is a rookie umpire; I’ve got nothing on him.
Pitt-Mil: Over is 6-1-4 in last eleven Wendelstedt games.
Cin-Cubs: Under is 11-2-3 in last sixteen Blakney games.
Atl-Colo: Under is 12-2 in last fourteen Bellino games.
Phil-SD: Six of last nine Lentz games stayed under total.
TB-Tor: Over is 5-1-2 in last eight Barksdale games.
Det-Tex: Over is 5-2 in Barber games this season.
Clev-Minn: Under is 8-5-1 in last 14 Vanover games.
KC-A’s: Last five Hoye games stayed under the total.
Balt-Sea: Under is 3-1 in last four Johnson games.
NY-NY: Over is 8-3 in last eleven Whitson games.
Hst-Az: Over is 10-5 in last fifteen Demuth games.
LAA-Wsh: Under is 6-1-1 in last eight Davis games.
StL-Bos: Underdogs won five of last seven Segal games.
CWS-LA: Road team won eight of last ten Muchlinski games.
NL @ AL– 67-49 AL, favorites +$227
AL @ NL– 64-57 NL, favorites -$137
Total: 124-113 AL, favorites +$90
Totals in interleague games
NL @ AL: Over 59-56-3
AL @ NL: Over 64-51-7
Total: Over 123-107-10
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Wednesday's Diamond Notes
By Joe Williams
Hottest team: Indians (5-0 past five games, 17-7 past 24 overall)
The Indians have won five straight on the road, and they're 4-0 in their past four road games against a team with a winning record, including Tuesday's series opener in Minnesota. It's been quite the road odyssey for the Indians, as they swept the Rays Friday-Sunday in St. Petersburg, stopped in Boston for a win in a make-up game and then flew west to the Twin Cities to keep it rolling. The Tribe is now 13-3 over their past 16 games following a win, and they're a solid 11-4 in their past 15 games against a pitcher with a WHIP over 1.30. They're also 14-3 over the past 17 against a right-handed starting pitcher.
Coldest team: Tigers (1-5 past six games, 2-9 past 11 overall)
On the opposite side of the AL Central spectrum, the Tigers continue to struggle. They were tripped up 10-4 in Arlington against the Rangers, and now they have the unenviable task of facing Cole Hamels on Wednesday. The Tigers are 0-6 in their past six on the road, 1-4 in their past five tries against a left-handed starting pitcher and 1-7 in their past eight outings against a team with a losing overall record. They're also 10-21 in Anibal Sanchez's past 31 outings, and 5-13 across his past 18 road starts. He hasn't fared well against AL West clubs, either, as the Tigers are 0-4 over his past four against those clubs.
Hottest pitcher: Lance Lynn, Cardinals (10-6, 3.12 ERA)
The Cardinals were rolled in the interleague series opener in Boston on Tuesday, so they'll turn to Lynn to get them back on track. Lynn checks in ninth in the majors with a 3.12 ERA through 24 starts, as the opposition is hitting just .210 against him with a 1.15 WHIP. He has also struck out 117 batters over 138 2/3 innings while allowing 22 homers. Over Lynn's past seven outings on five days of rest the Cardinals are 5-2, and they're 4-0 in his past four starts on a grass surface. In addition, the Cardinals have won five straight against a team with a winning overall record and they're 4-0 over his past four outings when he recorded a quality start last time out.
Coldest pitcher: Ricky Nolasco, Angels (5-12, 5.24 ERA)
Nolasco has had a nightmare season in Anaheim, serving up 30 homers over 134 innings of work across 24 starts. He also ranks ninth in the majors with 78 earned runs allowed, a number that is sure to grow in an assignment against the Nationals, even with All-Star OF Bryce Harper (knee) out of commission. Washington ranks third in the majors with a plus-125 run differential. The Nationals cooled off the Angels on Tuesday, snapping their six-game winning streak in the process. The Halos are 2-8 in Nolasco's past 10 road outings, 4-15 over his past 19 starts and 2-6 in his past eight tries against a team with a winning overall record.
Biggest UNDER run: Nationals (4-0-1 past five overall)
The 'under' connected in Tuesday's interleague series opener against the Angels, a 3-1 victory for the home team. The under is now 4-0-1 in the past five for the Nationals, 4-0-1 in their past five home games against a team with a losing road record and an impressive 7-0 across their past seven interleague games. The under is also 6-0 across Washington's past six against the American League West, while going 8-2 in their past 10 against a right-handed starting pitcher. The under is also 4-0 in Tanner Roark's past four starts and 5-1 across his past six assignments at Nationals Park.
Biggest OVER run: Padres (22-8-1 past 31 overall)
The Padres aren't known for their offensive prowess, but that could change if their young nucleus sticks together and they keep doing what they're doing. The 'over' has cashed in eight straight outings against a right-handed starter, including Tuesday's 8-4 victory against Mark Leiter Jr. and the Phillies. The over is now 22-8-1 over their past 31 games overall, and 7-1-1 in their past nine against teams with an overall winning percentage under .400. Clayton Richard has been an 'over' bettors dream pitcher, too, as the over is 5-1-1 over his past seven outings and 3-1-1 in his past five starts while working on four days of rest.
Matchup to watch: Red Sox vs. Cardinals
The Red Sox and Cardinals wrap up their two-game interleague set on Wednesday in Beantown, and St. Louis is hopeful things go a little better than they did on Tuesday. Rick Porcello has struggled all season, but he looked like the 2016 Cy Young version in a 10-4 victory. The Cardinals have won eight of their past 10 games overall, and they're 8-2 in their past 10 against a left-handed starting pitcher, too. The Cards have also won four straight starts by Lance Lynn, too. Boston has been even hotter, winning 11 of their past 13 games overall, and seven of their past eight at Fenway Park. They turn to Eduardo Rodriguez to keep the ball rolling. They're 5-1 over E-Rod's past six home outings, 4-0 in his past four interleague assignments and 4-0 in his past four against the NL Central.
Betcha didn’t know: The Indians pounded the Twins at Target Field on Tuesday, as they opened up a 5 1/2-game lead on Minnesota, and a six-game spread against Kansas City. Minneapolis has been a home away from home for Cleveland, as they're 11-1 in their past 12 trips to the Twin Cities, and 15-6 over the past 21 meetings in this series overall. In addition, the Twins might not be rolling out the right pitcher to turn things around on Wednesday. Kyle Gibson will oppose Carlos Carrasco, and the Twins are 0-6 over his past six home outings against Cleveland. Total bettors will also be interested in the fact the under is 5-1 in Carrasco's past six road outings against the Twins, while going 4-1 in Gibson's past five tries against the Tribe.
Biggest public favorite: Dodgers (-330) vs. White Sox
Biggest public underdog: Phillies (+140) at Padres
Biggest line move: Cubs (-175 to -200) vs. Reds
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MLB Picks & Analysis
By Adam Burke
Los Angeles at Washington (-120); Total: 9
Early baseball for the Angels, who made a long cross-country trip on Sunday to battle the Nationals, marks the first game of the day. Gio Gonzalez’s clear and obvious signs of regression didn’t hit again and this is the root cause of my frustration this season. My timing is either off with these guys or it inexplicably doesn’t happen. It’s just one those seasons where variance kicks me in the beans every damn day and I’m tired of it. I still believe in the process. I still believe in the numbers. I still believe in looking for clear signs to go against pitchers. Things just aren’t cooperating or happen after I give up. When you isolate a pitcher in line for clear regression, you have to keep going against them. The nice thing about a guy like Gonzalez is that he plays for the Nationals, so the opposition is plus money on a regular basis. That means you can hit at 45 percent and still show a profit.
Anyways, today is a new day. Ricky Nolasco takes on Tanner Roark. This price is wrong. The Nationals are only a -120 favorite for a getaway day game series finale. I realize Bryce Harper is out and the price on Washington has been adjusted, but there’s a lot of offense here to compensate for Harper. Nolasco has been awful this season. He has a 5.24 ERA with a 5.36 FIP and a 4.57 xFIP. He’s given up 30 home runs in 134 innings of work. He’s actually fortunate to have a 5.24 ERA, but his 76.1 percent LOB% is a contributing factor. He’s allowed 10 runs on 16 hits over his last nine innings of work. He’s mixed in some decent starts lately, but has struggled for the most part.
Tanner Roark is on my positive regression list. He has a 65.6 percent LOB%, which is why he has a 4.74 ERA with a 4.29 FIP. His 4.42 xFIP is a little bite high, but that’s because his walk rate has regressed a bit this season. Roark’s LOB% is the primary stat I’m looking at. Last season’s way too high at 79.5 percent, but this season’s is too low. He should fall into a sweet spot in the low 70s like most pitchers. It should be around there the rest of the season, which is why I’m looking to back him. Over the last two starts, Roark has stranded 90.9 percent and 92.1 percent of his runners. That came after a string of nine starts in which Roark was at just 55.7 percent. That’s how you get a 6.24 ERA over a couple months.
I’ll be backing the small favorite here. The Angels don’t really impress me that much, despite their recent run. We’ve seen the Wild Card contenders all be pretty streaky this season and put together these strings of wins and then fall off the pace. The Angels look to be in that mode to me.
Pittsburgh at Milwaukee (-125); Total: 8.5
The Brewers are the preferred side today from bettors as Jimmy Nelson takes the hill against Gerrit Cole. Despite a matchup against a slumping Ivan Nova, the Brewers only managed three runs last night. It was good enough to win. These are two pretty good hurlers. Cole has a 3.96 ERA with a 4.16 FIP and a 3.92 xFIP. One thing that we need to start looking at with certain pitchers is workload. Cole will cross 150 innings in this start. He worked just 124 last season between the big leagues and Triple-A. He worked 208 in 2015, but 160.1 in 2014. Cole has had some injury problems in recent years, so it’s important to look at those velocity and control metrics to see if we’re looking at any sort of fatigue or injury.
I don’t see any from Cole and he’s actually been really good since the start of July. Dating back to July 5, Cole has a 2.74 ERA with a 3.33 FIP and a 3.81 xFIP in his last seven starts. He’s struck out 46 in 46 innings and has lowered both his walk rate and his home run rate. These are all positive developments to say the least.
Jimmy Nelson is having a career year. He’s got a 3.72 ERA with a 3.13 FIP and a 3.15 xFIP. He’s posting a career-best strikeout rate and has cut his walk rate down by 4.6 percent. He’s coming off of his worst start of the season by a large margin. Nelson gave up 10 runs, nine earned, on 11 hits in 3.2 innings of work against the Reds. It was the first time since April 29 that Nelson had allowed more than four runs in a start. It took his season ERA from 3.24 to 3.72. It takes a seriously awful start to raise an ERA 0.48 runs given the sample sizes we’re working with.
I’m guessing that was just a one-off thing. His velocity readings looked fine, so it was just one of those things. Neither one of these offenses have been all that consistent in recent weeks. We know the Brewers haven’t been and the Pirates haven’t been for most of the season. Now that Andrew McCutchen has slowed down and Gregory Polanco is back on the shelf, there isn’t a whole lot to get excited about with the Pirates. Starling Marte is off to a terrible start post-suspension.
I’d have to look at the under here.
Kansas City (-130) at Oakland; Total: 9
According to Twitter, today is National Roller Coaster Day. It seems fitting that the Royals and Athletics paid homage with yesterday’s crazy ballgame. A 4-3 game after three innings stayed that way until the eighth when the Royals took an 8-4 lead with a five spot. The A’s scored six in the bottom half of the inning and won 10-8.
That’s a tough loss for the Royals to bounce back from, but ace Danny Duffy is on the mound. As far as I’m concerned, Duffy is an awful matchup for the A’s. They don’t hit lefties well at all and Duffy has a 6.8 percent HR/FB%. The A’s generally don’t manufacture a whole lot of innings. They’ll get a runner on and hit a dinger or something. Duffy hasn’t allowed that to happen a whole lot this year. He has a 3.68 ERA with a 3.41 FIP and a 4.49 xFIP because his HR/FB% is about half of what the league average is. Duffy did allow seven runs his last time out, but, again, that appears to be a one-off thing. His high FB% should play well in Oakland, even during the day.
Paul Blackburn is a big regression candidate. In his eight starts, Blackburn has a 3.02 ERA with a 4.20 FIP and a 4.79 xFIP. He’s got a 77.6 percent LOB% despite a 9.9 percent K%. This is the type of guy that offenses should feast on, but they haven’t. What’s weird about that is that he has a 54.8 percent GB%, so he should have a much higher BABIP than .262, especially with how bad Oakland is defensively. He’s a clear regression candidate.
The Royals are in a really tough spot with a getaway day game out west after last night’s bullpen debacle, but they’re the side today. It might even help that it is a day game for Kansas City. It feels a little more like a normal schedule and the team didn’t have time to sit and sulk about last night’s loss. One of the things I can give Kansas City credit for during these last few years is the team’s resilience. This is a spot to showcase that.
Baltimore at Seattle (-110); Total: 10
The trend of day games with bettable lines continues with Ubaldo Jimenez and Marco Gonzales in the Orioles vs. Mariners game. Jimenez is awful. We all know that. Basically, my first question when I see Jimenez on the card is, “Can I play the other team?”
So, we’ll handicap that. Marco Gonzales was once a pretty promising prospect in the Cardinals organization. He started in rookie ball in 2013 and was in the big leagues by the end of 2014 for five starts and five relief outings. He only made one MLB start in 2015 and missed all of 2016 with an injury. The Mariners, desperate for pitching help, scooped him up from St. Louis. In one start for the Cardinals and two for the Mariners this season, Gonzales has allowed 11 runs on 17 hits, including five home runs, in 11.2 innings of work.
I’m not willing to step in front of that to fade Jimenez. Gonzales is a fringe Major Leaguer taking on a Baltimore lineup that has gotten it going of late.
Tampa Bay at Toronto (-140); Total: 8.5
Jacob Faria and Marcus Stroman are the listed starters for Wednesday’s AL East matchup between the Rays and Jays. As much as I like Stroman and dislike the Rays offense, I’m not going to be laying -140 or -145 with Toronto very often. Faria does have some signs of regression in his profile. He has a 3.19 ERA with a 3.62 FIP and a 4.30 xFIP. Faria had a 16.7 percent HR/FB% in Triple-A Durham before he got called up, but he had great HR/FB% metrics in the low minors, so maybe that one was the outlier. Still, he has a 78.6 percent LOB%, so there’s some cause for concern there. That being said, the Blue Jays haven’t gotten a hit with a runner in scoring position since the Stephen Harper Administration, so they may not be the lineup ready to deliver that regression.
Marcus Stroman has a 3.00 ERA with a 3.74 FIP and a 3.61 xFIP. With average strikeout and walk rates, that is an impressive set of advanced metrics for Stroman. He’s done a great job of stranding runners and has an above average HR/FB% because he just doesn’t allow fly balls. Stroman’s 62.8 percent GB% is the best in baseball among starters. Stroman missed almost all of the 2015 season with a torn ACL. Once he really got going in 2016, he had an exceptional second half. From July 15, 2016 to the present, Stroman has a 3.25 ERA with a 3.65 FIP and a 3.39 xFIP across 241 innings.
He’s legitimately good. The market, like me, isn’t all that invested in laying a -140 price tag with Toronto, but they’re the only side I can take in this spot. You can either wait on this number to come down a little or grin and bear it and take the -140, but I really like this matchup for Stroman against a swing-and-miss lineup that can’t do much outside of elevating the baseball and hoping for the best.
St. Louis at Boston (-140); Total: 9.5
Slight trickles of money are coming in on Boston for this one against St. Louis. Lance Lynn will take the mound for the Cardinals against Eduardo Rodriguez for the Red Sox. I’ve sung my praises of Rodriguez this season. Lynn is a guy that may be a little bit underrated by the market overall, but he has a low ERA and a high xFIP, so I understand the desire to go against him.
Lynn has a 3.12 ERA with a 4.83 FIP and a 4.68 xFIP. He’s stranded over 82 percent of opposing runners this season. His strikeout rate is down quite a bit from where it has been in the past and his walk rate hasn’t gotten any lower. His home run rate is the worst of his career. But, he’s got a .226 BABIP against, which is 71 points better than his career mark and has that high LOB%. It’s certainly understandable why the market would look to go against him. I would.
Eduardo Rodriguez has a 3.80 ERA with a 3.99 FIP and a 4.32 xFIP. He’s worked just 87.2 innings across 15 starts and one relief appearance. If he could stay healthy, he’d really be something special, but chronic knee problems have limited his upside. He just worked six shutout against the Yankees at Yankee Stadium to showcase some of that upside. He also gave up 20 runs over his previous five starts to show some of that inconsistency. But, he’s got 96 strikeouts in those 87.2 innings, so he’s shown some swing and miss and he has good command metrics with a low BABIP and a low HR/FB%.
I’d be looking to lay the price with the Red Sox today. They have been one of the league’s laggards in the power craze, but Lynn’s clear signs of regression are too much to ignore.
Tonight’s lines feature a lot of big numbers. The Cubs are laying $2 against Homer Bailey and the Reds. Yu Darvish opened -350 against the White Sox. The Indians are laying -180 on the road. The Rockies are a -160 favorite against the Braves and Mike Foltynewicz. Certainly you could consider Taijuan Walker and the Diamondbacks over Charlie Morton and the Astros. Morton has pitched well since coming off the DL, though.
It looks like a tough night to bet baseball, so you’ll have to look in the afternoon and at a couple of the chalkier favorites I mentioned above.
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D'backs face Astros
The Astros will be going for their third win in four games when they host the Diamondbacks on Wednesday.
The Diamondbacks had won two of their previous three games before losing 9-4 to the Astros on Tuesday. Arizona has no chance of winning the NL West at this point, but the team can still earn one of the two NL wild card spots. The Diamondbacks are actually currently in the second position, but the Cardinals are starting to close the gap on them. As for the Astros, they are currently way ahead in the AL West and really don’t have anything to worry about right now. They will, however, be happy to win a series against a good National League team, so they’ll be looking to prove what they are capable of here. The starters in this Wednesday night game are set to be RHP Taijuan Walker (6-6, 3.76 ERA, 100 K) for Arizona and RHP Charlie Morton (9-5, 3.83 ERA, 110 K) for Houston. One trend that stands out when looking at this game is the fact that the Diamondbacks are 10-2 against the money line in inter-league games this season. The Astros, however, are also an impressive 37-15 against the money line in inter-league games on the year.
The Diamondbacks can use all the wins they can get right now, but it’s not going to be easy to beat an elite Astros team on Wednesday. Arizona is sending Taijuan Walker to the mound, and he is coming off of a rather poor start. Walker allowed four earned runs in five innings of work against the Cubs on Aug. 11, and it was his first time allowing more than three earned runs in four starts. The Diamondbacks will certainly be hoping that he can allow two or fewer in at least six innings in this one, but you really never know what you’re going to get with Walker. On offense, 1B Paul Goldschmidt (.320 BA, 28 HR, 93 RBI) is the guy that is going to need to come through for his team in this game. Goldschmidt should be ready to hit in this one, as he was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI on Tuesday. He has now hit safely in 11 of the past 12 games, and he is really just a tough guy to keep down right now.
The Astros have not been playing their best ball as of late, but they have won two of their past three heading into this one. Houston’s bats got hot on Tuesday, as the Astros put up nine runs in their win over the Diamondbacks. They’ll be hoping for more of the same when they take the field on Wednesday, and 2B Jose Altuve (.363 BA, 18 HR, 65 RBI) and OF George Springer (.303 BA, 28 HR, 70 RBI) are two guys that will be counted on to produce here. Altuve has been the best average hitter in baseball for years now, and he is always a threat to get multiple hits in a game. Springer, meanwhile, is as explosive of a hitter as there is in the league, and he will be hoping to go yard in this one. As for the pitching, Charlie Morton will be looking to turn in a quality start in this one. That is something he has done in three of his past four outings, and he has been a lot better when pitching in Houston this season. That should give him a little extra confidence here.
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