By: Al Walsh – Follow him on Twitter @14AdotWalsh
– MLB Season Record: 35-24-2 (59.3%)
[7:05 p.m. EST] Detroit Tigers at Philadelphia Phillies (-1.5, +100)
DET: Tyson Ross – R (1-3, 4.03 ERA)
PHI: Vince Velasquez – R (1-0, 1.99 ERA)
Vince Velasquez has been outstanding to the start the season, allowing only five runs over 22 2/3 innings with a WHIP of 1.01. Tonight, he’ll take the mound against a Tigers team that has scored the fewest runs (91) in the American League – third-worst overall. Detroit also ranks fourth-worst in K-rate (26.6%) against right-handed pitching.
The value for Philly on the 1.5-run line (+100) is fantastic, compared to the -210 moneyline to win outright. There’s a noticeable difference of talent between each of these lineups, so I’m rolling with the Phils who are 11-5 at Citizens Bank Park this season.
* Final Score Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies: 7 – Detroit Tigers: 3 *
[7:05 p.m. EST] Over 9.5 (-120) – St. Louis Cardinals (-106) at Washington Nationals
STL: Adam Wainwright – R (2-2, 3.96 ERA)
WSH: Anibal Sanchez – R (0-3, 6.00 ERA)
Anibal Sanchez and his 1.78 WHIP run into a hot Cardinals team that has won eight of their last nine games. In fact, Sanchez has allowed at least eight baserunners in all five of his starts this season. It’s a likely scenario that St. Louis exceeds the 9.5 total all by itself, considering the Nationals also have the league’s worst bullpen.
Adam Wainwright hasn’t been terrible this season, but it’s not like he’s been immaculate either. His last outing against the Brewers inspired some hope, yet most of his better starts came against doormats like the Padres and Pirates. I’d expect Wainwright to cough up some runs, but surely not as many as Sanchez and the Nationals’ bullpen.
The IRT increased slightly for both teams, with the total jumping up a half-run to 9.5, so Vegas is liking a high-scoring game in DC tonight. Not to mention, the -120 juice on the over is quite telling, especially with it only being -102 on the under. The SK Value Pick trends also have the highest grade of the night on the Cardinals to win outright, so we’ve got a nice double-dip on our hands!
* Final Score Prediction: St. Louis Cardinals: 9 – Washington Nationals: 6 *
[9:45 p.m. EST] Under 7 (-108) – Los Angeles Dodgers at San Francisco Giants
LAD: Walker Buehler – R (2-0, 5.25 ERA)
SF: Drew Pomeranz – L (1-2, 3.65 ERA)
Well, I had Over 8 in this game last night and was let down big time by both squads. The Giants had baserunners on all night, but couldn’t get them around to score – they actually got all three of their runs on one swing, of course. The Dodgers had the potential for a massive sixth inning but a line drive, which would have scored two more runs, got caught and turned into a double play. Ugh, is all I have to say about that.
It’s a new day, though, as Walker Buehler takes the mound for the Dodgers. His 5.25 ERA is a bit skewed, considering the tough level of competition he’s gone against – the Reds were his easiest opponent and it’s no surprise that was his best start of the season. The Giants have MLB’s second-worst wOBA (.275) against right-handed pitching this season, so I’d expect Buehler to have a fantastic night and possibly begin a long string of quality starts in the process.
Drew Pomeranz has allowed two runs or fewer in four of his five starts this season. One of those starts was against these same Dodgers, and Pomeranz allowed two runs over five innings. The Dodgers do have the eighth-highest K-rate (26.4%) against left-handed pitching this season, so that lends some more optimism to the under in this game.
All in all, we do have two viable pitchers in one of the league’s worst parks for offense and teams with two of the lower IRTs on the slate. Not to mention, the SK Value Pick trends have a B+ grade for the under for this game. Vegas dropped the Dodgers’ IRT -0.5 quite early on today, which subsequently moved the total from 7.5 to 7.0. Defense! (clap, clap) Defense!
Final Score Prediction: Los Angeles Dodgers: 3 – San Francisco Giants: 1 *