Another full slate of Major League Baseball games tonight, and from first glance several match-ups look like obvious choices. But before you put your entire bankroll on some of the heavy favorites, remember there is no such thing as a sure thing. Let’s take a look at a few of the games that may seem like obvious choices tonight, along with two of my favorite plays for value.
Twins: Gibson (0-5, 6.05) at White Sox: Quintana (5-7, 3.04)
The Chicago White Sox have gone 6-0 against the Twins this season and even as a -165 favorite may look like a steal tonight. Twins starter Kyle Gibson will only be making his third road start on the season, he’s 0-2 with a 12.38 ERA on the road so far. Overall the Twins are 2-5 when Gibson starts. The Twins are also only 9-26 on the road this season, so you may think that the obviously play here is Chicago of course. Well, there are a few positive signs for a Twins upset here that are worth considering.
Current White Sox hitters are only hitting .176 against Kyle Gibson all time over 125 career at bats. In seven career starts against the White Sox, Gibson is 4-1 with a 2.06 ERA. He is also a perfect 3-0 with a 2.22 ERA on the road at U.S. Cellular Field. There is no other team that Gibson has had more success against than the White Sox.
After getting off to a 5-1 start, Jose Quintana he is 0-6 with a 4.50 ERA in his past eight starts, however all six losses have come against teams with winning record.
I honestly cannot feel confident in telling anyone to put their money on the Twins here, despite Gibson’s past success against the White Sox he is still winless this season. However after Tyler Duffey’s two hit performance in a 7-1 Twins win against the Yankees on Sunday, I am respecting what Gibson and the Twins maybe able to do and staying away from the White Sox as well.
Indians: Kluber (7-7, 3.59) at Braves: Wisler (3-7, 4.22)
The Indians are the hottest team in baseball right now. Corey Kluber is 10-2 with a 2.30 ERA in inter-league play. Braves pitcher and Ohio native Matt Wisler has pitched much better than his 3-7 record indicates, but the pitching match-up still definitely goes to the Indians and Kluber. Even at -177, I like the Tribe to win here. They are playing so well right now.
Cubs: Lester (9-3, 2.10) at Reds: Lamb (1-4, 4.78)
The Cubs are 7-1 against the Reds this season and the Over is 7-0-1 in those games. Lester has only allowed more than three earned runs in one start this season. John Lamb is 1-1 with a 3.10 ERA in the month of June, which includes a very strong start on June 1 at Colorado. Despite the chances of a pitchers duel on paper, the Reds bullpen is not very good and these teams have not played a single game that has gone under yet. My play here is Chicago to win but -235 is a lot of juice to lay down.
Pirates: Niese (6-5, 4.93) at Mariners: Iwakuma (6-6, 4.45) over 8 runs (-115)
Mariners starter Hisashi Iwakuma has a 5.37 ERA in six home starts this season. Opponets are also hitting .297 off on him at home.
Pirates starter, Jonathon Niese has posted a 1-3 record and 5.97 ERA over five June starts. Current Mariners have a lifetime batting average of .311 against Niese.
The Pirates games have gone over the second highest percentage of times than any other team in baseball this seasoon. Only the Minnesota Twins have had more games go over.
Orioles: Jimenez (4-7, 6.97) at Padres: Johnson (0-5, 8.54) over 8.5 runs (-122)
This is a pitching rematch from June 22, when Ubaldo Jimenez only allowed two earned runs over six innings, resulting in a 7-2 Orioles win against the Padres and Erik Johnson.
In five starts this season Erik Johnson has never allowed less than four earned runs. In four of those starts he has allowed five runs or more. The Orioles have scored at least five runs in six straight games. I would be surprised if the Orioles do not score often here.
Ubaldo Jimenez is 0-5 with a 10.13 ERA on the road this season. I highly recommend betting over 8.5 runs here.