Friday sees the long-awaited season debut of Dallas Keuchel and is perhaps the headline grabber of a good night of baseball. We have one afternoon game in Chicago, before a 14-game evening main course, full of intriguing matchups.
Here are Today’s MLB Picks:
Tigers @ Indians
This game has all the makings of a tight pitcher’s duel, which should be the under well and truly in play. Neither offense ranks above 20th in any of the major hitting stats, and both pitchers have ERAs under four. Matt Boyd has had some struggle recently, but this Indians offense can be shut down with good pitching, as Mike Minor demonstrated last night. There are also some concerns over Trevor Bauer this season, but his last two outing have seen him throw 16 1/3 innings and allow just one run to score while striking out 14.
1u – Under 7.5 Total Runs @ +100
Blue Jays @ Red Sox
This pick is likely going to make you choke on your coffee in surprise, because I am going to go away from the Red Sox and back a Blue Jays win. Before you laugh and go about your day just bear with me. Yes, Chris Sale has been immense lately, but the Red Sox offense have not always backed up his efforts. In his last home start against the Rangers he allowed just one run to score in seven innings and the team lost the game. That was against Mike Minor, who has been superb, and today’s opposing pitcher Trent Thornton has incredible numbers outside of Toronto, with a 2.98 ERA on the road in 45 1/3 innings. It may not be enough with the disparity of these two offenses, but the Red Sox are too up-and-down, and their home record too spotty (17-17) to pass up these odds on a longshot. This is not one to include in a parlay, but a fun bet which hopefully reaps big returns.
0.5u – TOR Blue Jays ML @ +335
Twins @ Royals
If I had to pick a pitcher I had gone against the most this season it would likely be Jakob Junis. Every time he is on the mound the over is well and truly in play, thanks to his 5.33 ERA. Throw in a pitcher in Martin Perez who is regressing hard, having allowed 16 earned runs in his last 18 innings and we have ourselves some fun. A final kicker is that the weather in Kansas City is going to be hot, with the wind blowing reasonably strongly out to left field, and this is a prime over situation, despite the high line.
1u – Over 10.5 Total Runs @ +105
Rockies @ Dodgers
This feels like a game that should be a complete mismatch between the two pitchers. Walker Buehler has turned his season around from his rough start and is in great form. In contrast German Marquez has a 4.57 ERA and has allowed 19 runs to score in his last three starts. Granted they were in a gusty Chicago and Colorado, but the signs are there for his regression to continue. The Dodgers bats have heated up, scoring nine runs in each of the last three games, and if that continues they would hit the over on the total by themselves. If Buehler has another game like he did against the Mets a couple of weeks back, then this over would hit early and easily. Dodgers home game with spreads 7.5 or lower have seen the over hit on 15-of-22 occasions.
1u – Over 7.5 Total Runs @ +100
By Ben Rolfe