SpreadKnowledge MLB Free Pick of the Day – Tuesday, August 27

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh
* 2019 MLB Record: 222-171-10 (56.5%) *

SpreadKnowledge is going with a new format for our free article/mailer from here on out. For our highest-rated picks, you can sign up at SpreadKnowledge.com.

In order to get access to those same picks that were once in this space, sign up at the link above. We’ll be posting one pick here in this space each day for free. Know that it does have a high value, but it just won’t be the highest-rated one from the SK system.

Also, we’re happy to announce that we’re reducing prices this week before the start of NFL season. The prices on our packages are now going from:

Member + AI Boost: $90.00 to $60.00/month
Member: $30.00 to $20.00/month
BRAND NEW FREE PACKAGE: (find details on website)

* Use the Promo Code (SK15OFF) for an additional 15% off your subscription for the next 6 months *


[8:10 p.m. EST] Under 7.5 – Tampa Bay Rays at Houston Astros
TB: Charlie Morton – R (13-5, 2.85 ERA/1.06 WHIP)
HOU: Justin Verlander – R (15-5, 2.77 ERA/0.81 WHIP)

The SpreadKnowledge MLB Free Pick of the Day comes to us from the Astros-Rays game on Tuesday night. We’re going with the under in this game, considering Vegas adjusted the game total from 8.5 to 7.5, with both sides getting significant IRT (implied run total) decreases – Rays: -0.7, Astros: -0.4.

Justin Verlander has endured some of the worst possible luck in recent starts, but he’s still pitching at an elite level. In fact, the electric righty has now posted double-digit strikeout games in each of his last seven outings.

Although it was all the way back in March, Verlander dazzled the Rays in seven innings of one-run ball while striking out nine batters. Tampa Bay comes into today’s game after losing two straight games to the Orioles, followed by on off-day, so their bats and minds are still likely to be in a funk on Tuesday night.

Charlie Morton returns to the city that basically reinvented his career, and got him a World Series ring. The veteran righty has talked in recent days about loving it here in Houston and having all the respect in the world for his old teammates, but he’s got a job to do – and more importantly, the Rays are still fighting for that second AL Wild Card spot.

This is a matchup between two of the best arms in baseball, so we should definitely expect these guys to feed off one another. It’s worth noting, many opposing pitchers have done the same in trying to match Verlander, as six of his last seven starts have resulted in the game total reaching seven runs or fewer.

* Final Score Prediction * Houston Astros: 3 – Tampa Bay Rays: 2

MLB Free Pick of the Day for Thursday, August 1

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh
* 2019 MLB Record: 176-133-7 (57%) *
Hey, everyone! SpreadKnowledge is going with a new format for our free article/mailer from here on out. We’ve teamed up Covers and started posting our picks to their site — For our highest-rated picks, you can sign up here or at SpreadKnowledge.com.

We’ll be posting one pick here in this space each day for free. Know that it does have a high value, but it just won’t be the highest-rated one from the SK system. Continue to follow us along in this journey, because there are plenty of good things on the way!

[7:10 p.m. EST] Over 10.5 – Tampa Bay Rays at Boston Red Sox
TB: Brendan McKay – L (1-1, 3.72 ERA/1.03 WHIP)
BOS: Andrew Cashner – R (10-5, 4.18 ERA/1.26 WHIP)

Our SpreadKnowledge MLB Free Pick of the Day comes to us from the Rays-Red Sox game. We had the over in our three-game bundle pack last night, and we’ll be doing the same here once again.

Andrew Cashner has not lived up to the billing since donning the Red Sox uniform, allowing a total of 24 hits, five walks (1.64 WHIP) and 12 runs over 17 2/3 innings. Interestingly enough, all of those games came against AL East opponents (vs. TOR, @BAL, vs. NYY) and tonight’s matchup against the Rays will complete the divisional roundabout.

Things won’t get any easier, as Tampa Bay has scored 33 runs over its last four games, including a total of 14 in the first two games of this series in Boston.

Brendan McKay has truly been a mixed bag of outings, with two good starts and two that he’d probably like to forget about. Considering the Red Sox will be trying to avoid the sweep, you have to think they’ll put some runs on the board tonight, whether it’s a winning or losing effort.

After all, Boston is absolutely pounding left-handed pitching over the last 21 days, with massive .406 weighted on-base average and .313 ISO (power metric) numbers. Last night, it was the lefty Ryan Yarbrough that the Red Sox teed off on more than any other Rays pitcher.

All in all, we’re looking for both offenses to take advantage of the starting pitchers early and lead us right into the total going over. Vegas does have an interesting take on this game, giving the Rays a +0.3 IRT increase while the Red Sox get a -0.4 decrease. Playing the human card here, you have to believe Boston puts some runs on the board, but we’ll get crazy and give Tampa Bay the win to complete the sweep.

* Final Score Prediction * Tampa Bay Rays: 7 – Boston Red Sox: 6

MLB Betting Value Picks for Sunday, July 21

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 148-122-7 (54.8%) *

[1:10 p.m. EST] Chicago White Sox at Tampa Bay Rays (1.5-run line: -114)
CHW: Dylan Cease – R (1-1, 5.73 ERA/1.55 WHIP)
TB: Blake Snell – L (5-7, 4.55 ERA/1.27 WHIP)

Enough is enough already for the Rays, who have lost five straight games, including the first two of this series against the White Sox. Tampa Bay had a great shot to win yesterday, but it was not meant to be as Chicago engineered a late comeback.

I find it very difficult to believe the visitors will come in here and sweep this series, considering the matchup on the mound today. That’s why we’re rolling with the Rays on the 1.5-run line at -116, as opposed to the massive -270 number on the moneyline.

After a few rough outings, Blake Snell has gotten back on the good foot. The electric lefty has now allowed a total of four runs over his last three starts, with two of them coming against the vaunted Yankees. It does speak for volumes today for the optimism of Snell, considering the White Sox have the lowest implied run total (3.0) of any team on today’s schedule.

Over the last 21 days, the White Sox have an anemic .306 xwOBA (quality of contact) against left-handed pitching. Look for this lineup to struggle once again versus Snell – the current roster owns a massive 39.4% K-rate in 71 combined plate appearances.

Dylan Cease has only made two career MLB starts and the latest one didn’t go so well, allowing eight hits and six runs (four earned) over six innings. Despite the Rays’ recent offensive woes (against a good majority of quality starting pitchers), this is a great spot for them to get back in the win column. Tampa Bay owns the eighth-best wRC+ (108) in baseball against right-handed pitching and they should be able to manufacture some runs against the youngster.

All in all, this is a spot where a team lets their ace go out and do their thing in order to stop a losing streak and avoid the sweep. Look for Snell to have a huge day on the mound and the Rays to get to Cease early.

* Final Score Prediction * Tampa Bay Rays: 6 – Chicago White Sox: 2

 [4:10 p.m. EST] Los Angeles Angels (ML: -170/1.5-run line: +110) at Seattle Mariners
LAA: Dillon Peters – L (1-0, 4.15 ERA/1.50 WHIP)
SEA: Yusei Kikuchi – L (4-6, 5.01 ERA/1.46 WHIP)

The SpreadKnowledge system has all the California love today – cue Dr. Dre and Tupac music. In fact, the Angels moneyline (-170) and 1.5-run line (+110) are the second- and third-most likely outcomes in the SK system for the entire day. We’ll play it safe on the moneyline, but just know that the 1.5-run line is certainly there for the taking as well.

Look no further at the reasoning than to Yusei Kikuchi, who has gotten absolutely blasted by Los Angeles this season. Get ready for this one – in four starts against the Halos this season, Kikuchi has allowed 31 hits, 11 walks, 20 runs (19 earned) and six homers over 15 2/3 innings of work. Wow, wow and wow! Seattle has struggled to win ball games when Kikuchi is on the mound, with a 1-8 record over his last nine starts.

We saw the Mariners’ defense cost them last night’s game on an absolutely horrific error on an infield pop-up with two outs in the ninth inning – the Mariners proceeded to give up four runs after that mishap. I have no idea how they pick themselves up off the floor after losing a game in heartbreaking fashion, especially when this team has already had their spirits broken many of times lately.

Dillon Peters will be recalled from Triple-A to make today’s start. He hasn’t done a lot of great things at the MLB level, but it’s not like the Mariners have been consistently putting up big numbers either. Despite Friday’s 10-run outburst, Seattle has scored three runs or fewer in six of its last seven.

Once again, I feel like last night’s loss will have the Mariners in a world of hurt and that they won’t be able to rid. Look for the Halos to take advantage early and often.

The Angels are a whopping 23-5 over the last two seasons when being favored on the road by -125 to -175, while the Mariners are 12-37 versus teams with a winning record this season.

* Final Score Prediction * Los Angeles Angels: 13 – Seattle Mariners: 2

[4:10 p.m. EST] Miami Marlins at Los Angeles Dodgers (1.5-run line: -152)
MIA: Jordan Yamamoto – R (4-0, 1.59 ERA/0.94 WHIP)
LAD: Walker Buehler – R (8-1, 3.44 ERA/1.00 WHIP)

The SpreadKnowledge system has the Dodgers moneyline (-280) as the most likely outcome of the entire day, while the 1.5-run line isn’t too far behind. In order to keep things civil, we’ll take the Dodgers on the 1.5-run line and save nearly $170 to lay, in order to win $100.

Walker Buehler has had a couple of funky outings recently, but we really don’t see that being the case today. After all, he’s taking on a Marlins team that either dead-last or bottom-three against most advanced metrics against right-handed pitching. Looking at the Marlins recent games, only one starting pitcher has allowed more than two runs against them over the last seven contests.
Buehler has been particularly good at home, posting a 3-0 record and 3.16 ERA in eight starts there this season.

Here’s where things get interesting. Jordan Yamamoto has actually been a great find by the Marlins in the Christian Yelich trade. The rookie righty is 4-0 with a 1.59 ERA in six starts this season, but this will certainly be his toughest test of the season.

It was a bit peculiar to see the game total increased from 8.0 to 8.5 and the IRTs (implied run totals) – Dodgers: +0.4, Marlins: +0.2 – do the same. To me, that’s a big knock on Yamamoto, considering we all know damn well those increases aren’t speaking to Buehler.

There’s a scenario where this game could come down to the bullpens, and if that’s the case, you have to like the Dodgers chances even more.

* Final Score Prediction * Los Angeles Dodgers: 6 – Miami Marlins: 2

MLB Betting Value Picks for Monday, July 15

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 139-111-6 (55.6%) *

[7:05 p.m. EST] Tampa Bay Rays at New York Yankees (ML: -155)
TB: Blake Snell – L (5-7, 4.70 ERA/1.29 WHIP)
NYY: James Paxton – L (5-4, 4.01 ERA/1.43 WHIP)

Blake Snell has certainly not lived up to the billing in the season after winning the AL Cy Young award. This has been especially true against the Yankees, and this will be the fourth time they’ve seen him in a span of 11 starts. We’ve talked about this more than a few times – the more a team sees a pitcher, the more comfortable they get.

While he does have 26 strikeouts in 17 innings against the Yankees this season, Snell has also allowed 17 hits, nine walks and 10 runs in four starts. Not to mention, the lefty’s 2-4 record and 6.48 ERA on the road has been much worse than his 3-3 record and 3.17 ERA at Tropicana Field. In fact, Snell’s last four road starts have seen him allow a total of 25 hits, eight walks and 20 runs over a span of 14 innings.

James Paxton has a fantastic matchup against a Rays team that owns the third-highest K-rate (26%) and ninth-worst wOBA (.310) against left-handed pitching this season. That was never more evident than in Paxton’s last start when he fanned 11 Rays and only allowed two runs over six innings.

Paxton had an uncharacteristically-bad start against the Blue Jays back on June 26, but four of his last five starts have seen him allow two runs or fewer.

The Yankees are on an excellent run, winning 18 of their last 23 games. They also have a 31-10 record against AL East opponents and a magnificent 15-2 record at home when favored by -125 to -175 on the moneyline this season.

According to our graded picks today, the Yankees (on moneyline or 1.5-run line) have the best trends on today’s entire schedule of games. It also likes the total going under, considering Yankees’ games have done that in seven of the last nine while Rays’ games have done the same in four of the last six.

* Final Score Prediction * New York Yankees: 5 – Tampa Bay Rays: 2

[8:10 p.m. EST] Under 10 – Atlanta Braves at Milwaukee Brewers
ATL: Max Fried – L (9-4, 4.29 ERA/1.41 WHIP)
MIL: Adrian Houser – R (4.01 ERA/1.45 WHIP)

With two talented offenses going up against one another, it may seem like a crazy idea to take the under, but that’s exactly what we’re doing here. And Vegas is on our side, decreasing the game total from 10.5 to 10.0, with both sides having their IRT (implied run total) decrease by -0.3 runs, which is tied for highest on today’s entire slate.

When the teams faced off in May, two of the three games went under the total. Also, Braves’ games have gone under the total in 14 of the last 20 while the Brewers offense has just been sputtering since the end of June.

Max Fried wasn’t effective in his last two starts before the All-Star break, but he’s a young kid and the time off could certainly do him some good. The lefty has looked sharp for the most part this season, and his May 17 performance against these same Brewers was nothing short of masterful. In six innings, Fried allowed only two hits and two walks while not coughing up any runs.

The Brewers’ offense hasn’t been great recently against lefties either. Over the last 21 days, Milwaukee owns a very pedestrian .321 wOBA, .145 ISO and 27.2% K-rate against southpaws.

Adrian Houser probably won’t be the reason this game goes under the total, but he can sure help us out a bit. The righty’s splits have been unbelievably tilted, with him posting a 1.88 ERA at Miller Park, compared to a 5.08 ERA on the road. While the Braves have been winning a lot of games, they have scored only four runs or fewer in four of the last six.

Atlanta has been playing a lot of low-scoring games lately, so that plays right into our hands and exactly what Vegas is thinking with the decreased game totals and IRTs.

* Final Score Prediction * Atlanta Braves: 4 – Milwaukee Brewers: 3

[8:40 p.m. EST] Over 14 – San Francisco Giants at Colorado Rockies
SF: Dereck Rodriguez – R (5.27 ERA/1.44 WHIP)
COL: Chi Chi Gonzalez – R (6.00 ERA/1.89 WHIP)

Well, the first game of today’s day-night doubleheader is certainly where we want to be for the second part. At the time of this writing being released, the Giants are up 16-2 in the seventh inning and the Rockies left German Marquez out there to take a good portion of this thumping.

Nonetheless, the Rockies will likely need to use some more arms to close out this game, and they just announced Chi Chi Gonzalez as the starter for tonight’s game. While he doesn’t have a ton of MLB experience, Gonzalez has issued plenty of walks, and putting numerous guys on base for one of the hottest offenses in baseball doesn’t seem to bode well for his chances.

This is a Giants’ offense that has now scored at least seven runs in eight of their last 11 games. It is truly unfathomable to believe that this could ever happen. Especially, with Evan Longoria on the injured list now.

While the Rockies’ offense looks awful in the first game today, you have to expect them to come back with something strong tonight. Prior to today’s debacle, the Rockies’ offense posted a total of 19 runs over the previous two days against a strong batch of Reds’ arms. Rodriguez has been getting ripped with great regularity this season, so guys like Charlie Blackmon, Nolan Arenado, Trevor Story, Ian Desmond and David Dahl can certainly make life difficult on him.

Vegas loves the idea of more runs being scored in the second half of the doubleheader. The game total spiked from 13.5 to 14.0, with both teams’ IRTs (implied run totals) increasing by +0.3. Also, today’s first part of the doubleheader was the third-straight game in which 17 runs (and they’re still going) have been scored at Coors Field.

* Final Score Prediction * Colorado Rockies: 10 – San Francisco Giants: 8

MLB Betting Value Picks for Sunday, July 7

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 130-111-5 (53.8%) *

[1:10 p.m.] New York Yankees at Tampa Bay Rays
NYY: James Paxton – L (5-3, 4.09 ERA/1.45 WHIP)
TB: Charlie Morton – R (9-2, 2.36 ERA/1.03 WHIP)

Vegas already set this one up for a pitcher’s duel, decreasing the game total from 8.5 to 7.5, and both sides got massive IRT decreases as well — Yankees: -0.6, Rays: -0.4.

James Paxton will match up well against a Rays’ team that has the second-highest K-rate against left-handed pitching this season. Even against decent competition, Paxton has allowed two runs or fewer in three of his last four starts.

Charlie Morton has been straight up filthy, allowing one run or fewer in four of his last six starts. The Yanks do have some hitters like Breyvic Valera and Austine Romine which will downgrade their lineup a bit, but Morton’s stuff is among the best in MLB.

Look for these two guys to duel it out against each other and give their respective bullpens a little more rest heading into the All-Star break.

* Final Score Prediction * New York Yankees: 3 – Tampa Bay Rays: 2

[1:10 p.m. EST] Philadelphia Phillies at New York Mets
PHI: Aaron Nola – R (7-2, 3.89 ERA/1.33 WHIP)
NYM: Zack Wheeler – R (8-5, 4.42 ERA/1.25 WHIP)

These two just dueled it out last week before the bullpens ruined everything. In fact, Vegas thinks we’ll be seeing yet another duel, decreasing the game total from 8.5 to 8.0, with the Phils IRT decreasing -0.3 and the Mets at -0.2.

Aaron Nola is 6-1 with a 3.48 ERA/1.13 WHIP in 11 career starts against the Mets. He has just been flat out amazing over the last three starts, allowing only two runs (one earned) over the last 23 innings.

Zach Wheeler has handled the Phillies well over the course of his career, going 5-2 with a 2.95 ERA/1.07 WHIP against them in 13 career starts. It looks like the consistency is finally starting to round back to form at the right time, allowing only four runs over the 19 1/3 innings.

The two bullpens looked great last night, and the Phils’ has been even more impressive in this whole series. Ultimately, I feel like that gives them the edge today, but the under is where the money is at.

* Final Score Prediction * Philadelphia Phillies: 4 – New York Mets: 3

MLB Betting Value Picks for Thursday, July 4 – Happy Independence Day!

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 129-110-5 (53.8%) *

[5:10 p.m. EST] Under 9 (-110) – New York Yankees at Tampa Bay Rays
NYY: J.A. Happ – L (7-4, 5.23 ERA/1.28 WHIP)
TB: Yonny Chirinos – R (7-4, 3.10 ERA/1.00 WHIP)

J.A. Happ will look to keep his perfect 3-0 road record intact as the Yankees travel to Tropicana Field. For an extreme fly-ball pitcher like Happ, getting himself out of Yankee Stadium is something he’ll gladly welcome.

Since coming to New York, Happ is 2-0 against Tampa Bay while allowing only two runs in 12 total innings. The Rays’ offense hasn’t been comfortable against left-handed pitching, owning the second-worst K-rate (27%) in all of MLB in that split. In addition, their numbers against lefties aren’t great over the last 21 days either, with .281 wOBA and .130 ISO marks.

If all of that wasn’t enough, the Yankees’ bullpen will be right there behind Happ. Their numbers look terrible over the last week because of that trip to London, but we have to remember that the dimensions of that field were an absolute joke.

In nine meetings between the two teams this season, the Yankees have held the Rays to three runs or fewer seven times.

Yonny Chirinos has done a great job of becoming a traditional starter this season. In 17 of his appearances, Chirinos has only allowed more than three runs twice. Against the Yanks this season, the righty has held them to three runs over 10 2/3 total innings.

All in all, the total going under in this game has the highest rating of any on today’s schedule. I’ll give the Yanks the edge in this one too, considering their 7-2 mark against the Rays this season.

* Final Score Prediction * New York Yankees: 4 – Tampa Bay Rays: 2

[9:10 p.m. EST] San Diego Padres at Los Angeles Dodgers (ML: -222) 
SD: Dinelson Lamet – R (season debut)
LAD: Hyun-Jin Ryu – L (9-2, 1.83 ERA/0.90 WHIP)

We can’t take too much out of Hyun-Jin Ryu’s last outing, where he allowed seven runs in four innings, at Coors Field. After all, that has been a place of horrors for him over the years, and it was the first time he allowed more than two runs in an outing all season.

Ryu has had plenty of success against the Padres, going 7-1 in 10 career starts, with a 2.26 ERA/1.07 WHIP. Not to mention, Ryu has been flat-out unhittable at home this season, going 6-0 with a 0.94 ERA and the Dodgers are a whopping 16-2 in games at Dodger Stadium in games that he started.

On the other side, Dinelson Lamet will be making his first start in 15 months after recovering from Tommy John surgery. While he might be someone to look out for down the road, all of that time off is not going to help him in this matchup against the Dodgers. It’s a brutal matchup to be thrown back into the mix, considering the Dodgers are 36-9 at home this season.

The Dodgers are tied with the game above for the highest trend rating of the day in our system. Take them with confidence, knowing Ryu is money at home.

* Final Score Prediction * Los Angeles Dodgers: 5 – San Diego Padres: 1

MLB Betting Value Picks for Monday, July 1

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 127-109-4 (53.8%) *

[7:10 p.m. EST] Under 10 (-104) –  Milwaukee Brewers at Cincinnati Reds
MIL: Adrian Houser – R (2-2, 2.94 ERA/1.34 WHIP)
CIN: Tyler Mahle – R (2-8, 4.35 ERA/1.22 WHIP)

We’re only going to see Adrian Houser for a few innings, but he should get us well on our way to hitting the under tonight. Despite a rough outing in his last appearance, Houser has allowed one run or fewer in 14 of his 17 appearances this season.

Coming behind Houser is the Milwaukee bullpen, which has the fifth-best ERA (3.08) over the last 14 days. In any event, we’re probably going to see Josh Hader enter the game at some point. That’s two innings of pure shut-down baseball. The electric lefty has notched 77 strikeouts in 40 2/3 innings this season.

The stat sheet for Tyler Mahle hasn’t necessarily been pristine, but it’s not a total disaster either. Mahle has allowed three earned runs or fewer in seven of his last 10 starts. Not to mention, the Brewers’ offense hasn’t been at its best of late, scoring three runs or fewer in five of their last six games and the Reds have one run or fewer in three of the last five games.

Brewers’ games have gone under the total in five straight, while Reds’ games have done the same in 18 of their last 24. Five of the nine Brewers-Reds’ matchups have also gone under the total this season. This is THE TOP TREND is the SK Trend Confidence rating system tonight, folks! Let’s have at it!

* Final Score Prediction * Milwaukee Brewers: 5 – Cincinnati Reds: 3

[7:10 p.m. EST] Baltimore Orioles at Tampa Bay Rays (1.5-run line: -144)
BAL: Thomas Darwin Eshelman – R (MLB debut)
TB: Ryne Stanek – R (0-1, 2.76 ERA/1.14 WHIP)

OK, time to pick on the Orioles again. And this is the perfect time to do so, given that Tampa Bay will be rolling out one of its patented bullpen-games. I always love taking the Rays in these situations because they play the individual matchups so well and truly make it work to their benefit.

Even better for the Rays is that they’ll be facing the worst team in MLB. The Orioles have lost 14 of the last 17 games, and their bullpen is absolutely dreadful. Baltimore’s pen ranks dead last (even worse than the Mets) in every single metric that is tabulated.

The Rays are 4-2 against the Orioles this season and will likely add on to that win total tonight. Tampa Bay’s -280 moneyline is its highest total of the season, thus increasing the likelihood that the home team will take care of business this evening.

* Final Score Prediction * Tampa Bay Rays: 7 – Baltimore Orioles: 2

MLB Betting Value Picks for Sunday, June 30

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on  Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 126-108-4 (53.8%) *

[1:10 p.m. EST] Washington Nationals (1.5-run line: -190) at Detroit Tigers
WSH: Max Scherzer – R (7-5, 2.52 ERA/
DET: Jordan Zimmermann – R (0-5, 5.95 ERA/1.45 WHIP)

Mad Max is back in the D! It was one of the worst moves in the history of the franchise, letting Max Scherzer out of town, but he’s back to claim what’s rightfully is – respect.

And apparently, breaking his nose was just the thing he needed. Since that tragic gaff, Scherzer has held the opposition to one run over 15 innings while striking out 20 batters. The multi-colored-orbital man has now struck out at least nine batters in each of his last five outings, including double-digits in four of those starts.

Today, Scherzer will go toe-to-toe with Jordan Zimmermann. This is a mismatch made in heaven if you’re betting on the Nationals, which is what I plan on doing here – heavily. Looking at Zimmermann’s stat line, it really doesn’t do justice, and it seems like some time on the IL didn’t do anything to help matters. Since then, Zimmermann has allowed 14 hits and six runs over his last nine innings. In general, the Tigers have lost the last six games that Zimmermann started, five of them coming by two runs or more.

The recent Statcast data against right-handed pitching between the teams is noticeably different. Over the last 21 days, the Nationals have a massive .370 wOBA and .249 ISO while the Tigers are at the opposite end of the spectrum with a .304 wOBA, .158 ISO and 26.3% K-rate.

All in all, we’re not trying to kid anyone here. Max is going to mow these poor Tigers’ hitters with relative ease.

* Final Score Prediction * Washington Nationals: 7 – Detroit Tigers: 1

[1:10 p.m. EST] Texas Rangers at Tampa Bay Rays (ML: -200)
TEX: Jesse Chavez – R (3-2, 2.79 ERA/
TB: Blake Snell – L (4-7, 5.01 ERA/1.34 WHIP)

It’s no secret that Blake Snell has struggled this season, but this a prime opportunity for him to get back on the good foot. The Rangers have struggled mightily against left-handed pitching with a massive 32.6% K-rate over the last 21 days. As we all know, Snell is one of the best in the business at racking them up.

The Rangers will throw a bullpen-game at the Rays today, and it’s not like that’s going to help their case. Over the last 14 days, the Texas bullpen owns a zaftig 4.91 ERA. The road has not been kind to the Rangers this season, and even though their recent success looks good, this is simply a different team away from Globe Life Park.

Let’s roll with the Rays in confidence, and know that Snell is going to dominate this afternoon!

* Final Score Prediction * Tampa Bay Rays: 6 – Texas Rangers: 2 

MLB Betting Value Picks for Monday, June 17

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 110-91-4 (54.7%) *

[7:05 p.m. EST] Over 10 (-108) – Philadelphia Phillies at Washington Nationals
PHI: Jake Arrieta – R (6-5, 4.31 ERA/1.45 WHIP)
WSH: Patrick Corbin – L (5-5, 4.11 ERA/1.22 WHIP)

Vegas is loving some runs in this game, elevating the IRTs (implied run totals) for each team – Nationals: +0.7, Phillies: +0.3.

Jake Arrieta has not been at his best of late and the control has been a big reason why. The veteran righty has issued nine walks over his last two outings (10 2/3 innings), despite the Phillies getting the win in each of them. The road has not been kind to Arrieta either, as he’s allowed five runs in each of his last two starts away from Citizens Bank Park.

The Phils’ bullpen has been downright awful of late. After coughing up Friday’s game in Atlanta, three of their pitchers combined to give up 15 runs in Sunday’s loss to the Braves. Stretching it out a bit longer, the Phils’ bullpen has the second-worst ERA (9.27) in MLB over the last seven days.

Arrieta could very well find himself in a spot where he’s forced to pitch more innings, even if things aren’t going well.

Aside from a complete-game shutout against the lousy Marlins, Patrick Corbin has been brutal. Over his last three starts (12 2/3 innings), the lefty has allowed 22 hits and 20 runs (16 earned) – yikes!

According to the advanced metric xwOBA, the top six hitters in each team’s lineup have been making solid contact over the last 21 days against the handedness of starting pitcher on the mound tonight. Not to mention, five of the last six games for both teams have gone over the total.

FYI: This game might get off to a late start with a 50% chance of rain in the forecast from 7-9 p.m. I don’t see that causing any issues for either offense.

* Final Score Prediction: Washington Nationals: 8 – Philadelphia Phillies: 7 *

[7:05 p.m. EST] Under 9 (+100) – Tampa Bay Rays at New York Yankees
TB: Yonny Chirinos – R (7-2, 2.88 ERA/0.93 WHIP)
NYY: Masahiro Tanaka – R (4-5, 3.58 ERA/1.18 WHIP)

While Yankee Stadium isn’t exactly the place we usually look for the total going under, there is a nice matchup of dueling righties on the mound tonight.

The Spread Knowledge Trend Confidence rating has the under on this game as the highest grade of the evening. A big reason is that nine of the last 13 Rays’ games have gone under the total. Also, the total has dropped slightly from 9.5 to 9.0, and the Yankees’ IRT dropped from 5.2 to 4.8 – usually a good sign for the under.

Masahiro Tanaka hasn’t been at his best lately, but he does have fantastic lifetime numbers (0.96 career WHIP) against the Rays. That includes 13 innings of work against them this season, allowing only eight hits and one run while striking out 13 batters. In his last six starts against the Rays, Tanaka has allowed two runs or fewer in five of those – one run or fewer in four of them.

Yonny Chirinos has made a smooth transition to becoming a legit starter, and he’s allowed two runs or fewer in six of the last seven outings – one run or fewer in four of the last six. The electric righty has done a fine job of limiting runs against the Yankees, allowing no runs in two of his four career meetings – the latest coming at Yankee Stadium.

Both of these teams have incredibly-talented bullpens, so I certainly won’t bet against them. Look for this to be a low-scoring game that comes down to the very end.

* Final Score Prediction: Tampa Bay Rays: 4 – New York Yankees: 3 –*

[7:10 p.m. EST] Under 8.5 (-112) Houston Astros at Cincinnati Reds
HOU: Wade Miley – L (6-3, 3.14 ERA/1.16 WHIP)
CIN: Luis Castillo – R (6-1, 2.20 ERA/1.09 WHIP)

It’s a fantastic matchup of arms, as Wade Miley and Luis Castillo go up against one another, in a ballpark that usually makes pitchers weep. The total going under in this game is also one of the highest grades on the SK Trend Confidence rating.

Let’s start with Castillo, who has allowed one earned run in each of his last three starts. It’s quite telling that the Astros are underdogs, given that they’re 1-4 when having that label this season. Obviously, Castillo and his dominance play a big part in tonight’s line, but Houston is also coming off a 12-0 shellacking at the hands of Toronto yesterday. Sure, the Astros’ lineup is missing some key pieces, but you can’t be getting beat by the Blue Jays like that.

If, for some reason, Castillo doesn’t make it too deep into this start, no worries. The Cincy bullpen is leading a number of categories in advanced metrics over the last seven days.

Miley has been a pleasant surprise for the Astros this season, especially of late, allowing two runs or fewer in seven of the last nine starts. I don’t see him being as dominant as Castillo tonight, but certainly enough to not let this run total get out of hand. I’d be willing to bet that someone like Eugenio Suarez or Yasiel Puig tag him for a long ball, and that’ll ultimately be the difference.

I’m giving the Reds the win in this one, on the strength of a dominant performance from Castillo. It’s also a good sign for him that Houston loses its DH playing in the National League park.

* Final Score Prediction: Cincinnati Reds: 4 – Houston Astros: 1 *

[10:07 p.m. EST] Baltimore Orioles at Oakland Athletics (1.5-run line: -114)
BAL: Andrew Cashner – R (6-2, 4.63 ERA/1.38 WHIP)
OAK: Mike Fiers – R (6-3, 4.63 ERA/1.14 WHIP)

We’ve got trends galore in our favor for the A’s over the Orioles tonight – listen up!

Oakland is favored by its highest moneyline of the season tonight at -230. The A’s have been favored by -200 or more only twice this season, winning both games and scoring a total of 20 runs. Vegas knows what they’re doing.

The A’s will face Andrew Cashner, who they’ve beat up on a consistent basis. The veteran righty has a 6.83 ERA/1.69 WHIP against Oakland lifetime, and a lot of the hitters on the current roster have fantastic BvP numbers against him.

Mike Fiers has been fantastic over his last nine starts, allowing three runs or fewer each time out. He’s been even better against the Orioles, with a 3-1 record and 2.08 ERA/0.88 WHIP lifetime. Fiers also has great numbers at home this season, going 4-2 with a 0.95 WHIP. Over the last two seasons, Fiers’ team is 19-5 when he pitches at home and 16-7 when he pitches against teams with a losing record.

Oakland has been relaxing here on the West coast, while Baltimore had to travel across the country yesterday for tonight’s game. Look for them to experience plenty of jet-lag and the A’s to get a comfortable victory.

* Final Score Prediction: Oakland Athletics: 7 – Baltimore Orioles: 2 *

MLB Betting Value Picks for Friday, June 14

By: Al Walsh – Follow him on Twitter @14AdotWalsh

* 2019 MLB Record: 104-88-4 (54.2%) *


[7:05 p.m. EST] Boston Red Sox (1.5-run line: -150) at Baltimore Orioles
BOS: Eduardo Rodriguez – L (6-4, 5.00 ERA/1.39 WHIP)
BAL: Luis Ortiz – R (season debut)

OK, here we go. It’s time for the defending champs to officially get back on track. The Red Sox are 15-2 in their last 17 trips to Camden Yards, so this could very well be the cure for them. Vegas believes so, as the Red Sox IRT has increased significantly by +0.8 and the Orioles’ IRT has decreased by -0.3.

We’ve got solid trends for Boston and its starting pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez. The Red Sox are an incredible 17-2 in his starts against teams with a losing record, and the team also has an excellent 14-4 mark in E-Rod’s road starts over the last two seasons. Not to mention, he’s 4-0 against Baltimore in his last four meetings, allowing two runs or fewer in all of them.

While the lefty’s traditional numbers don’t look great, he is the unfortunate victim of bad luck. The Statcast suggests that positive regression is coming around in E-Rod’s favor, as opposing hitters aren’t barreling the ball up with great frequency – a lot of soft-contact hits are finding their way to open spots on the field.

The Orioles’ bullpen has allowed the most earned runs (175) and second-most homers (52) this season, and they’ll likely be needed after Luis Ortiz is done. Ortiz doesn’t have much MLB experience, but it isn’t pretty. In fact, his numbers down in Triple-A are even worse, carrying a 2-6 record with a 7.01 ERA/1.63 WHIP and 14 homers allowed in 52 2/3 innings.

If the Red Sox don’t get busy in this matchup, they all need to take ice baths or participate in some sort of cruel punishment.

* Final Score Prediction: Boston Red Sox: 12 – Baltimore Orioles: 4 *

[7:10 p.m. EST] Under 7 (+104) – Los Angeles Angels at Tampa Bay Rays
LAA: Andrew Heaney – L (0-1, 5.40 ERA/0.96 WHIP)
TB: Blake Snell – L (4-5, 3.50 ERA/1.10 WHIP)

For the second night in a row, we’ll have dueling southpaws going head-to-head at Tropicana Field. Both guys have electric swing-and-miss stuff, and that’s probably why we’ve seen drastic IRT decreases for the Angels (-0.4) and Rays (-0.7), while the game total went from 8.0 to 7.0.

Blake Snell takes the mound for Rays at home, and he looked great against the Red Sox, even after getting into some early trouble at Fenway Park. The Angels do have solid metrics against left-handed pitching, but you can throw all of that out the window when a guy like Snell is pitching. In fact, Snell has faced this Angels team before and notched a quality start in each outing while striking out 15 batters over 12 2/3 innings. Most of the guys that got the big hits in those games are injured anyways, and Snell has done a job of neutralizing the big boppers in this lineup, albeit in limited plate appearances.

Andrew Heaney allowed five runs in his last start, but it was the second time the Mariners saw him in six days – offenses typically get the advantage in those scenarios. Even with that performance, Heaney has a ridiculous 19.4 swinging-strike rate and has struck out 28 of the 67 batters (41.8% K-rate) he’s faced this season.

Oh yeah, and the team with the worst K-rate in baseball? You guessed it – the Rays.

* Final Score Prediction: Los Angeles Angels: 3 – Tampa Bay Rays: 2 *

[8:10 p.m. EST] Kansas City Royals at Minnesota Twins (1.5-run line: -116)
KC: Brad Keller – R (3-8, 4.29 ERA/1.38 WHIP)
MIN: Kyle Gibson – R (6-3, 4.14 ERA/1.28 WHIP)

Vegas is already giving the Twins some love early on with increases to their IRT (+0.7) and moneyline (-180 to -230). And for good reason, as there a few trends heading directly in their favor:

Minnesota is 27-10 against teams with a losing record this season, while KC is 28-80 against teams with a winning record over the last two seasons. Also, the Twins are 36-16 in games this season where the opposing starter is right-handed, while the Royals are 16-33 in that same scenario.

The Twins lead MLB in numerous advanced-metric categories against right-handed pitching and have done so throughout the entire season. Over the last 21 days, they own a massive .360 wOBA and .276 ISO against righties.

On the flip side, KC has been just the opposite over the last 21 days with a .287 wOBA and .138 ISO to go along with a 25% K-rate. The Royals have also scored three runs or fewer in 11 of their last 16 games.

Minnesota starter Kyle Gibson is a perfect 3-0 at home with a 3.24 ERA and .205 opposing batting average in four starts at Target Field this season.

All in all, the Twins are just the better team here and the Royals have lost eight of the last nine games that Brad Keller has started – seven of those eight losses came by two runs or more.

* Final Score Prediction: Minnesota Twins: 11 – Kansas City Royals: 4 *