MLB Playoffs Game 1: American League Wildcard Game Pick (Oct.4, 2016)

Baltimore Orioles (89-73) at Toronto Blue Jays (89-73) 8pm EST

Orioles: Tillman (16-6, 3.77) Blue Jays: Stroman (9-10, 4.37)

20161004_011704.jpgThe MLB Postseason begins Tuesday night when two familiar division rivals square up. Both the Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays had identical regular season records, with the Blue Jays narrowly winning the regular season series 10-9. For winning the regular season series the Blue Jays have the luxury of playing this single elimination round at home.

Chris-Tillman-10
Chris Tilman is 8-3 with a 2.97 in away games this season

The Blue Jays have a 46-35 home record overall and a 6-4 home record against the Orioles this season. The Orioles have a 39-42 road record on the season. The Orioles do however come in as the hotter team, winning seven of their last nine games, including two out of three road games against the Blue Jays during the final nine game stretch.

The Orioles turn to Chris Tillman with their season on the line. Tillman is 8-3 on the season with a 2.97 ERA over 14 road starts. The over/under record in Tilman’s starts is 4-10. Tilman has made four starts against the Blue Jays this season, he is 1-0 with a 3.63 ERA.

Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman is 4-3 with a 4.59 ERA in home starts this season. Stroman finished the month of September with a 0-5 record, despite a solid 3.41 ERA. On the season Stroman made four starts against Baltimore and has posted a 1-2 record and 7.04 ERA against them.

When looking at the bullpens, the Orioles hold an advantage on paper. Baltimore’s bullpen has an American League best 3.40 ERA and closer Zach Britton is a perfect 47 for 47 in save opportunities with a 0.54 ERA on the season. Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuno converted on 36 out 42 save opportunities this season, but blew three of his last four save chances.

Despite all the stats and data you can analyze for this game, this is a very even match-up between two division rivals who know each other very well.

It is worth noting that since Major League Baseball added the wildcard game in 2012, the visiting team is 6-2 all time (3-1 American League, 3-1, National League) with the Orioles winning 5-1 on the road over the Texas Rangers the very first year.

I have found the Orioles as big as a +142 underdog (The Greek). The Blue Jays are currently a -147 favorite, which I believe is way too high. This match-up is a close call with the Orioles having at least a 50/50 chance at worse. At -147, I feel it is not worth laying that kind of juice on Toronto. My personal play here and recommendation is to go with Baltimore Orioles Moneyline +142.

 

Tuesday August 2 Free Picks

Here is a preview on two of my free picks in tonight’s games between contenders from the American League East and American League West.

Texas Rangers (Darvish 2-2, 3.09) at Baltimore Orioles (Bundy 3-3, 3.46) 7:05 pm EST

darvishThe Rangers head into Baltimore tonight with momentum and an improved roster. Texas has won seven of its last nine games, while the Orioles have dropped five of their last six games.
The Orioles will send out rookie Dylan Bundy for only his fourth career start. Bundy has pitched a total four scoreless innings over two relief appearances against the Rangers this season, but the Rangers will have some extra muscle in the line-up this time around. The Rangers were winners at the trading deadline by adding Jonathan Lucroy (.299, 13 homers, 50 RBI) and Carlos Beltran (.309, 22 homers, 64 RBI), who are both expected to make their Texas debuts tonight.
Yu Darvish has been solid in his six starts this season, not allowing more than three earned runs in any of his appearances.
The Rangers are 13-11 against the AL East this season. The Orioles are only 8-15 against the AL West including 1-3 against Texas. I expect Texas to improve their record against Baltimore to 4-1 on the season with a win tonight. I am taking the Rangers -115 moneyline.

Toronto Blue Jays (Dickey: 7-12, 4.66) at Houston Astros (McCullers: 6-4, 3.18) 8:10 pm EST

Astros starter Lance McCullers has allowed only one earned run in five of his last six starts. Over these last six starts McCullers has 50 strikeouts in 36 innings pitched.
Blue Jays starter R.A. Dickey has struggled recently. Over his last three starts, Dickey has allowed 17 earned runs over 14 2/3 innings. Astros hitters also come in to tonight with a lifetime .337 batting average and .895 OPS against Dickey in 98 career at bats. I like the Astros -155 moneyline here to defeat the Blue Jays for the second night in a row.

 

Other Picks
✅ Cleveland Indians ML
✅ Chicago White Sox ML
✅ Milwaukee Brewers ML

Subscribe 24/7 full access: CappedIn.com/Betsportsstrong

Subscribe 24/7 full access: CappedIn.com/Betsportsstrong

Subscribe for 7 days now! Please enter your e-mail address in instructions


Buy Now Button

 

Twitter @GetSportsstrong

http://cappedin.com/Betsportsstrong

E-MAIL: betsportsstrong@gmail.com

Sunday May 29 (Nine MLB Picks against Vegas)

Here are my nine plays for Sunday May 29

 

1. Boston Red Sox @ Toronto Blue Jays  (Red Sox -1.5, +120)

Red Sox (Price 7-1, 5.34)  Blue Jays (Dickey 2-6, 4.60)

After a rough start to the season, David Price is now 3-0 with a 2.57 ERA over his past three starts. Price is also 8-0 with a 2.84 ERA in his last 10 meetings against the Blue Jays. Since the start of last season,  RA Dickey is 0-5 with a 5.21 ERA in eight starts against Boston. I like the Red Sox here.

2. Baltimore Orioles @ Cleveland Indians (Orioles Moneyline -125)

Orioles (Tillman 6-1, 2.61)  Indians (Clevinger 0-1, 8.71)

Baltimore has lost five out of six games but I think things will begin turn around for the Orioles here.  Chris Tillman has been the Orioles best starting pitcher this season.

Cleveland rookie Mike Clevinger has allowed 10 earned runs in his first two starts over 10 1/3 innings. I like the Orioles to win here.

3. Chicago White Sox @ Kansas City Royals (Royals +1.5, -125)

White Sox (Sale 9-1, 2.26) Royals (Volquez 5-4, 3.67)

White Sox are beginning to struggle coming in as loser of five in a row. Saturday the Royals scored seven runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat the Sox.  Several Royals have very good career numbers against Sale.

I like the Royals here, but coming off of a bad start I do not doubt Chris Sale’s ability to get back on track and lead Chicago to victory. If Volquez can keep the Royals in the game before the bullpens take over then the advantage is in the Royals favor. I am picking the Royals to cover -1.5 here, meaning either Kansas City wins or loses by one run or less.

4. St. Louis Cardinals @ Washington Nationals (Nationals -1.5, +125)

Cardinals (Wacha 2-5, 5.04)  Strasburg (8-0, 2.79)

Michael Wacha has given up 14 earned runs in his last eight innings pitched and lost his last five decisions.  I am picking the Nationals and Stephen Strasburg, who has a chance to improve to 9-0 on the season.

5. Detroit Tigers @ Oakland Athletics (Athletics Moneyline-165)

Tigers (Pelfrey 0-4, 5.55)  A’s (Hill 7-3, 2.18)

The Tigers are 3-6 against left handed pitchers on the season. Rich Hill beat the Tigers on April 26, allowing no earned runs over seven innings. Hill gives the A’s the clear pitching advantage here. The Tigers offense has been hot, but Mike Pelfrey starting does not give Detroit the best chance. I like Oakland to win.

6. San Diego Padres @ Arizona Diamondbacks (Padres Moneyline -120)

Padres (Pomeranz 4-4, 1.70) Diamondbacks (Bradley 1-0, 7.84)

Arizona is starting Archie Bradley who has just been called up from AAA. Over 10 career starts he has a 6.26 ERA and 1.72 WHIP. The advantage here is with Drew Pomeranz and the Padres.

7. Minnesota Twins @ Seattle Mariners (Mariners -1.5, +120)

Twins (Nolasco 1-3, 5.54)  Mariners (Walker 2-4, 2.70)

The Twins have won three in a row, I trend that should be coming to an end soon.  The Twins have lost the last five games that Nolasco has started.

Despite losing his last four decisions, Taijuan Walker has not allowed more then four earned runs in any starts this season. The Mariners are the better team with the better starting pitcher here. I like Seattle to win by more than a run.

8. Miami Marlins @ Atlanta Braves (Braves Moneyline -130)

Marlins (Koehler 2-5, 4.79) Braves (Teheran 1-4, 2.57)

On April 16 Tom Koehler gave up five earned runs in 3 2/3 inning to the Braves. Current Braves hitters are batting .370 against Koehler overall.

As bad as Atlanta has been this season, the Braves are 5-0 against the Marlins.Julio Teheran has allowed only one run or less in his last six starts.  For his career Teheran is 5-2 with a 2.71 ERA in 12 starts against the Marlins.  I like Atlanta to complete the sweep.

9. Los Angeles Dodgers @ New York Mets (Dodgers Moneyline -210)

Dodgers (Kershaw 7-1, 1.48) Mets (Colon 4-3, 3.44)

The Dodgers defeated the Mets 5-0 when Clayton Kershaw faced Bartolo Colon on May 17 in Los Angeles.

Kershaw is 7-0 with a 1.17 ERA in his ten career regular season starts against the Mets. I am expecting a Dodgers win.

 

Twitter @GetSportsstrong

http://cappedin.com/Betsportsstrong

E-MAIL: betsportsstrong@gmail.com