We got the needed split with our two underdogs on Monday and now have a couple of more games with lines posted and starters named, although that doesn’t always equal better betting opportunities. A few games where starters haven’t been named, so we’ll skip those games.
Pittsburgh at Minnesota: Joe Musgrove and Jose Berrios get the starts in this one and the Twins are -210 at William Hill. I have a little closer, with Minnesota -145, due to the Twins allowing 4.88 runs per game when Berrios starts at home.
Cleveland at Cincinnati: Shane Bieber and the Indians are -157 over the Reds and Tyler Mahle and I have the Indians -205 but can’t lay that type of price with Cleveland struggling at the plate so much.
Boston at Tampa Bay: Nathan Eovaldi faces his former team here, while Tampa counters with Charlie Morton. The Rays are down to -140 and I have them at -175.
Chicago White Sox at Milwaukee: Brandon Woodruff and the Brewers are -125 over Lucas Giolito and the White Sox and I have the Sox -105, but not going to take our man Giolito in this one, as the Brewers are 12-1 with Woodruff on the mound since the start of last year. We’ve ridden Giolito a bit the past two seasons, but it looks as though bettors have caught up and removed most of the value in his games.
Kansas City at Chicago Cubs: Brady Singer and Kyle Hendricks get the starts in this one and the Cubs are -195. Singer has had a couple of decent starts to begin his career, but the level of competition climbs a little here. I have the Cubs -230.
Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego: Dustin May and the Dodgers are -125 over Dinelson Lamet and the Padres and I have LA -190 in this one, but a little hesitant, as some sharp money is appearing on the home dog in this one.
Texas at Oakland: Lance Lynn gets the start for Texas and he’ll face Jesus Luzardo, the A’s top pitching prospect. Lynn was solid on the road last year, with Texas allowing just 3.82 runs, but the team was 6-11. I made Oakland -133.
Los Angeles Angels at Seattle: Andrew Heaney and the Angels are -195 against Justin Dunn and the Mariners in a rematch of the Angels’ 10-7 win last week. I have this one even and will take the Mariners for a small wager, risking .4 units to win .7 at +175. Not a strong play, as you can tell, but one worth a stab since there’s really nothing else that stands out.
Record: 11-10 (+2.63)
Another small slate of games for Monday, where we have a few contests off the board due to unconfirmed starting pitchers, so we’ll make due with what we have.
Cleveland at Cincinnati: The Reds and Sonny Gray have moved from -130 to -140 at William Hill over the Indians and Zach Plesac in a battle of pitchers who have started the season in impressive fashion. The Reds have been more potent offensively, which really isn’t saying a whole lot, so I have the Reds -191.
Philadelphia at New York Yankees: Gerrit Cole and the Yankees are -295 over Jake Arrieta and the Phillies, while I made New York -238. Arrieta says he’s feeling healthy and he’ll likely bounce back a little this season, as it’s a contract year for him, but throwing against the Yankees isn’t the easiest way to pad your stats.
New York Mets at Atlanta Braves: The Mets and Jacob deGrom are -121 over Mike Soroka and the Braves. Both starters have been pitching well and while Soroka isn’t as dominating as deGrom when both are on, he’s one of the pitchers who can equalize the Mets’ starter. New York is 7-8 in deGrom’s road starts since the start of last season, while Atlanta is 10-3 when Soroka starts at home. Will take a shot on Atlanta +110 in this spot.
Kansas City at Chicago Cubs: Alec Mills and the Cubs are -157 over Danny Duffy and the Royals, which is up a couple of cents from earlier this morning. I have the Cubs -150 in this one.
San Francisco at Colorado: The Rockies are starting Chi Chi Gonzalez, who is making his first start of the season, while the Giants haven’t named a starting pitcher yet. Still, the line dropped from Colorado -140 to Rockies -135.
Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego: Walker Buehler and the Dodgers have moved from -135 to -145 against Chris Paddack. Los Angeles has won the last five games played in San Diego and are 13-6 against the Padres since the beginning of last year. Buehler has better numbers at home, but has done a solid job away from home in his last five starts, where the Dodgers are 5-0 and allowed nine runs. Paddack is a better pitcher at home, where the Padres are 8-3 when he starts and allow 3.18 runs per game. I made the Padres -102 and will go against my Dodgers once again with San Diego +135.
Oakland at Seattle: The A’s and Frankie Montas are -180 over Justus Sheffield and Seattle. I have Oakland -232, as the A’s hit left-handers on the road pretty well. Sheffield hasn’t been great, but Seattle is 5-3 with him on the mound since the start of last season.
Record 10-9 (+2.28)
Was way off the mark on Saturday, as we suffered our first big loss of the season, and that’s going to happen on occasion when you bet primarily underdogs. It counts the same as one of the ninth-inning leads our teams have blown, and all you can do is march on to the next day.
I’ve remarked on ugly cards already this season, but this one is going to be tough to top in terms of ugliness. Just a few games with lines posted at William Hill and I have all the favorites winning, so just small plays today.
Tampa Bay at Baltimore: Yonny Chirinos and Tommy Milone are the expected starters in this one and the Rays are -190 at William Hill. Baltimore is a dismal 18-39 after a win since the start of last season, but the Rays are just 38-34 after a loss. Tampa Bay is 42-29 when facing a team it lost to last time. I made the Rays -214 in this one.
New York Mets at Atlanta: David Peterson and Kyle Wright are expected to start for their respective teams in this one, which is -105 both ways. Peterson was solid at Boston in his MLB debut, while Wright ran into trouble in the third inning in his first start. I made Atlanta -107 in this one.
Pittsburgh at Chicago Cubs: Battle of left-handers here, as Steven Brault faces Jon Lester. The Cubs are -203 and I have it a little closer at -155. Brault only pitched a couple of innings in his first start and the Pirates will probably try to get three or four out of him here. Lester was strong in his debut.
San Diego at Colorado: The Padres and Zach Davies are -125 at Colorado, who will throw Antonio Senzatela. Senzatela is a little like Kyle Freeland in yesterday’s write-up, where after a decent 2018 season he fell apart last year. Even though the Rockies allowed 6.75 runs per game in his home starts last year, Colorado was 8-4 in games he started and are 20-9 lifetime with Senzatela on the mound at home. I made the Padres -150 based on the numbers but you can’t overlook the Rockies’ record with Antonio on the mound, so I’ll risk .4 units to win .46 on the home underdog here.
Texas at San Francisco: The Giants are -111 in this one even though they haven’t named a starting pitcher. Even the MLB site doesn’t have anybody listed, so will have to skip this one.
Houston at Los Angeles Angels: Josh James and the Astros are -121 over Ohtani and the Angels and I made the Astros -110. James allowed three runs in three innings in his debut, while Ohtani was unable to record an out.
Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona: Clayton Kershaw gets the start for the Dodgers against Merrill Kelly and the Dodgers are -177. The Dodgers are just 7-11 in Kershaw’s career starts in Arizona, dropping four of the last five. I have the Dodgers -127 so I’ll take the Diamondbacks for .5 units to win .81 in this one.
Record: 9-8 (+2.32)
After seeing our teams blow a couple of leads, we finally got a comeback in our favor on Friday, as we now head into somewhat on an ugly Saturday card. As has been the case all season, not all of the games are posted at William Hill, so we’ll take a look at the games that have lines posted. With most sportsbooks going to “action” instead of “listed starters” for this season, I’m using the probable starters listed on the MLB site.
Cincinnati at Detroit: Trevor Bauer and Michael Fulmer get the starts in this one, where the Reds are -172. Fulmer makes his second start after Tommy John surgery and I have the Reds -199.
Chicago White Sox and Kansas City: Gio Gonzalez and Roland Bolanos are expected to take the mound in this one, where Chicago is -135. Bolanos wasn’t bad in his first start but I have the Sox -183.
New York Mets at Atlanta: The Braves are -125 in this one, where Michael Wacha gets the start for New York and Touki Toussaint is expected to start for Atlanta. Wacha was strong in his season debut, while Toussaint was roughed up out of the bullpen. I have the Mets -130 and will take New York +115 in this spot.
Cleveland at Minnesota: Carlos Carrasco had a solid return to the mound, but hasn’t been as good on the road as he has in Cleveland. The Twins and Kenta Maeda are -121 and I made Minnesota -175 in this one.
Boston at New York Yankees: The Yankees and Tanaka are -177 over Zack Godley and the Red Sox. Godley was solid in relief in his first appearance this year and I have the Yankees -196.
Houston at Los Angeles Angeles: Zack Greinke and Griffin Canning get the starts in this one and the Astros are -153. I have Houston -127 but without Mike Trout in the lineup it’s tough to back the Angels in this one.
Tampa Bay at Blatimore: Tyler Glasnow and the Rays are -213 at the Orioles, who will give the ball to Wade LeBlanc. LeBlanc got the win against the Red Sox in his season debut but wasn’t all that sharp. I have Tampa Bay -200.
Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona: The Dodgers are -140 in this one with Julio Urias getting the start against Luke Weaver. Arizona hits left-handers decent at home and I have this one even.
San Diego at Colorado: Battle of left-handed starters here, with Joey Lucchesi and Kyle Freeland getting the starts. The Padres are -121 and I have the Rockies winning, but Freeland has allowed eight or more runs in seven of his last 10 home starts. In 2018, Freeland allowed just 2.5 runs per game in 14 home starts, allowing four runs or less in 13 of those 14 starts. Will stay away from this one until we see which version of Freeland we’re going to get this year.
Pittsburgh at Chicago Cubs: The Cubs and Tyler Chatwood are -153 over Mitch Keller and the Pirates and I have Chicago -230. Both starters were solid in their season debuts, so will stay away.
Record: 9-7 (+3.32)
A little surprised at the overnight baseball offerings at William Hill this morning, as several games where starters look to be set are off the board, while a couple of games where starters aren’t etched in stone are posted. We’ll work with the games that are posted.
St. Louis at Milwaukee: The Cardinals are -140 in this one, which is a bit on the high side, as Brett Anderson was solid last season and pitched better away from Oakland Coliseum. Still, he missed his first start with a blister, so not sure what we’ll get from him here. I have the Cardinals and Jack Flaherty -115 in this one.
Boston at New York Yankees: The Bronx Bombers are -203 with Jordan Montgomery getting the start against Boston’s Ryan Weber, who was roughed up in his first outing. Question marks with both starters and I have New York -180.
New York Mets at Atlanta: Rick Porcello and Sean Newcomb are the expected starters here, and the Braves have dropped to -130 after opening -150. Atlanta hammered Porcello in his first start for the Mets and Newcomb lasted until the fourth inning. I have the Braves -202 but no real interest in this one.
Chicago White Sox at Kansas City: Big step up for Kris Bubic, who pitched in A baseball last season and now goes against Dallas Keuchel and a White Sox team that hits left-handers decent on the road. Chicago is -177 in this one and I have them -200 here.
San Diego at Colorado: Jon Gray and the Rockies are -111 over Garrett Richards and the Padres in a game that has seen the line come down a little bit. Richards looked sharp in his first outing, as did Gray. I have Colorado -200.
Houston at Los Angeles Angels: Lance McCullers had a solid return after surgery and the Angels will counter with Matt Andreise, who had a strong relief outing on Sunday. Houston is -160 in this one and I have them -155.
Texas at San Francisco: Mike Minor gets the start for the Rangers, who are down to -135 in this one. The Giants are expected to start Logan Webb. Minor was tough on the road last year, with Texas allowing 3.12 runs and San Francisco struggled to score at home. I have Texas -163.
Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona: The Dodgers are -140 and I’m seeing Tony Gonsolin getting the ball for Los Angeles against Zac Gallen. Gallen struggled with his control a little in his first outing but has been solid at home, going 4-1 last year after coming to Arizona, including a 5-4 win over Gonsolin and the Dodgers. I made Arizona -150, so will take the Diamondbacks +130 in this one.
Oakland at Seattle: Sean Manaea and the A’s are -180 against Taijuan Walker and Seattle. Neither pitcher was sharp in their debut, although Walker has a better excuse, as he tries to bounce back from Tommy John surgery. I have Oakland -177 in this one.
Record 8-7 (+2.02)
A slightly smaller schedule of games for Thursday, as we come into the day all even with the record after the Royals couldn’t hold on to an early four-run lead. A few more plays than usual today.
Chicago Cubs at Cincinnati Reds: Yu Darvish and Luis Castillo get the starts in this one, where the Reds are -121 at William Hill. I gave the Cubs slight advantages in both pitching in scoring in this one and have Chicago -130, so will take a shot on Chicago +110 in this one.
New York Yankees at Baltimore: JA Happ and the Yankees are -213 over John Means and the Orioles in an interesting game. The Yankees are beasts against LHP on the road, where they averaged 7.59 runs per game last year, while Means is tough at home, where the Orioles allowed three or fewer runs in 11 of his 16 starts. New York roughed him up in a 14-2 victory last season, so will stay clear of this one, where I have New York -182.
Boston at New York Mets: Another matchup of southpaws, Steven Matz and the Mets are -153 over Martin Perez, which is pretty much where I have this one, as I made New York -155.
Cleveland at Minnesota: This one is -105 both ways with Shane Bieber and Jose Berrios getting the starts. Berrios wasn’t as effective at home as he was on the road last year, where the Twins allowed 5.07 runs when he started. I have Cleveland -147 and will take a shot on Cleveland -105 in this one.
Tampa Bay at Atlanta: Yet another battle of left-handed starters, as Ryan Yarbrough and Max Fried take the mound in this one and the two offenses are pretty even here, with the Rays scoring 5.21 runs against LHP on the road and the Braves scoring 5.26 runs per game at home. Yarbrough allowed over 1.0 fewer runs, however, so I have Tampa Bay -147 and will take a stab on the Rays at +125.
Kansas City at Detroit: Brady Singer and the Royals are -125 over Ivan Nova and the Tigers. Singer had a solid debut, while Nova wasn’t too bad at home last season. Neither team hits the ball that well against RHP, but the Tigers are worse, so I have the Royals -135.
Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona: Ross Stripling and the Dodgers are -145 over Robbie Ray and the Diamondbacks, while I have this one a little closer, with the Dodgers at -110. Los Angeles is pretty average on the road against left-handers, so the scoring is pretty even, while Stripling has slightly better numbers.
Seattle at Los Angeles Angels: Marco Gonzales and Dylan Bundy get the starts in this one and the Angels are -195. Bundy was strong in his season debut, while Gonzales wasn’t, but a bit of an overreaction here, as this line is simply too high. This one is much closer to even and I have Seattle -105, so will take Seattle +175 in this one.
Record: 6-6 (+0.27)
MLB 7/29 –
Once again, several games are off the board due to teams not naming their starting pitchers, as we’re coming off another split on a night Joe Kelly became an instant hero to thousands of baseball fans.
Colorado at Oakland: German Marquez and Frankie Montas get the starts for their respective teams in this one and William Hill has Oakland -140. Both pitchers were solid a year ago but Montas was a little better at home, so I have Oakland -160.
Arizona at Texas: The Rangers and Lance Lynn are down to -125 over Madison Bumgarner and the Diamondbacks after opening -140. Lynn was strong at home last year, so I made Texas -180.
Chicago White Sox at Cleveland: The White Sox and Giolito are -111 at Cleveland, where Zach Plesac gets the start for the Tribe. Was hoping Giolito’s poor outing last time would make him an underdog here, so will stay away from this one, as I have Chicago -120.
Washington at Toronto: The Nationals are technically the road team in this one, which is being played at Nationals Park. Washington is -160 with Scherzer starting against Nate Pearson, while I have Washington -178.
Chicago Cubs at Cincinnati: Sonny Gray and the Reds are -111 against Kyle Hendricks and the Cubs after opening -125. Gray was tough at home last year, but favorites who have lost at least four straight have been a losing proposition over the years. I made the Reds -136.
Milwaukee at Pittsburgh: The Brewers and Brandon Woodruff are -153 at Pittsburgh for the third straight day, as Joe Musgrove starts for the Pirates. Woodruff was solid away from home a year ago and Musgrove was inconsistent, allowing 11 or more runs in five of his 16 starts and one run or less in four starts. I have Milwaukee -180.
Boston at New York Mets: Jacob deGrom and the Mets are -195 over Nathan Eovaldi and Boston, which is a little on the high side, but no real interest in taking Boston here, as I have the Mets as small favorites.
Tampa Bay at Atlanta: Mike Soroka and the Braves opened -140 and the line is down to -121 against Charlie Morton and Tampa. The Braves get slight advantages in both pitching and scoring, so I have Atlanta -160.
Kansas City at Detroit: The Tigers are -135 in this one with Danny Duffy and Matthew Boyd getting the starts. Both teams were better against left-handed starters a year ago, especially Detroit, which averaged nearly two more runs per game. Kansas City was strong on the road against LHP, so not a big difference in hitting, but Duffy with much better stats than Boyd. I made Kansas City -148, so will take the Royals +125 in this one.
San Diego at San Francisco: Chris Paddock and the Padres are -160 at the Giants, who will send Johnny Cueto to the mound and not sure what to make of Cueto, who wasn’t bad in his season debut. But the Giants were brutal at home last season against right-handers, averaging 3.31 runs per game. I have San Diego -187, which is probably too high.
Seattle at Los Angeles Angels: Andrew Heaney and the Angels are -210 over Dunn and the Mariners. Dunn started four games last year but only threw 6 2/3 innings. I have the Angeles -153 in this one.
Record: 6-5 (+1.27)
MLB Picks 7/28
Quite a few games without lines this morning due to pitchers not being names and the Miami Marlins ordeal. But as long as they play games, we’ll be here each morning looking for some worthwhile plays.
We ended up with a split and a tiny profit on Monday, as the Pirates blew a four-run ninth-inning lead, the second time that happened to us in three days. We’ll have a few like that that fall in our favor over the course of the year, so you just have to take those losses with a grain of salt.
Toronto at Washington: Tanner Roark gets the ball for the Blue Jays against one of his former teams and the Nationals will send Austin Voth to the mound. The Nationals are -135 at William Hill and I made this one even.
Chicago Cubs at Cincinnati: Tyler Mahle and the Reds are -111 over Alec Mills and the Cubs in this one. Mahle completely fell apart at home down the stretch last year, as the Reds allowed 47 runs over his last five home starts. As a result, I have the Cubs -150 and will take Chicago +101 in this one.
Atlanta at Tampa Bay: The Rays are -125 in this one, with Chirinos on the mound, while Atlanta will counter with Kyle Wright. Tampa Bay was 7-3 last year after scoring 10 or more runs and I have Tampa Bay -140.
Milwaukee at Pittsburgh: The Brewers are once again -153 over Pittsburgh and Milwaukee is sending Josh Lindblom to the mound to face Derek Holland. I made the Brewers -115 in this one.
St. Louis at Minnesota: Martinez takes the mound for the first time since 2018 for the Cardinals and he draws Homer Bailey in this one. Bailey showed some signs of putting things together last year and I have the Twins -145.
Arizona at Texas: This one is -105 both ways, with Merrill Kelly starting for Arizona and Kyle Gibson getting the start for Texas. I have Texas -160 in this one, although Gibson might not enjoy the same success now that he’s pitching in Texas.
Los Angeles Dodgers at Houston: Walker Buehler and the Dodgers are -145 over Framber Valdez and the Astros in this one, which is simply too high given Buehler’s road performances a year ago. The Dodgers allowed 3.62 runs per game when Buehler started at home and 4.88 runs when he took the mound on the road. I made Houston -150 in this one and will go against my Dodgers and take the Astros +135.
Seattle at Los Angeles Angels: The Angels and Patrick Sandoval are -177 over Sheffield and the Mariners, which is a bit on the high side. I have this one much closer at Angels -112.
Colorado at Oakland: Daniel Mengden and the A’s are -157 over Antonio Senzatela and the Rockies. Senzatela was bad last year regardless of location, with the Rockies allowing 6.0 runs in his road starts, so I have Oakland -175.
Record: 5-4 (+1.26)