The post-All-Star Break Monday sees a reasonably busy slate compared to usual. 20 teams are in action, but the double-header in Colorado means we have 11 games in total on the day.
Here are Today’s MLB Picks:
Dodgers @ Phillies
This should be a fascinating game, because both teams have been playing well this season. The Phillies have tended to blow hotter and colder. Zack Eflin epitomises that, as he had a 2.83 ERA as recently as June 19th but is now sitting at 3.78 after a couple of bad outings. However, with the weather likely to favour pitchers, and the Dodgers tending to towards the under when on the road with these slightly higher totals, I am backing him to perform in this one. On the other side we have the always solid Clayton Kershaw, and a Phillies team trending towards the under at home this season. All of this is enough to make me back the under in this game.
1u – Under 9.5 Total Runs @ +100
Blue Jays @ Red Sox
I have done this before with the Blue Jays and Trent Thornton an it has blown up in my face at the last second both times. However, this is the best matchup situation of the three, as he will be facing Rick Porcello, who has a 5.02 ERA at home. He also got smacked around by the relatively poor Detroit offense on the road last time out, so he is ripe for the picking right now. The attraction with Thornton is his road ERA, which sits at just 3.60. Yes, he has a couple of rough outings recently, but he bounced back in a big way at home to the Orioles. The combination of Thornton’s good numbers on the road and Porcello’s generally struggles have me leaning towards the Blue Jays straight up in this game.
1u – Blue Jays ML @ +170
Braves @ Brewers
When two teams that rank third and seventh in home runs meet you would expect a high scoring game. However, the over/under numbers favour the under in this game. The under is 6-2 in home games for the Brewers with a line set at 10, and the under is 7-3 in road games for the Braves with a line set at 10. Both starters in this game have had their issues, but both have also been good at times this season. Given the high total I am going to take the under, and I will even drop half a run below the line to get positive odds.
1u – Under 9.5 Total Runs @ +105
White Sox @ Royals
This feels like a nice spot for the White Sox. They have their ace on the mound, who has a 3.15 ERA this season, against a pitcher with a 5.89 ERA in his home ball park. If we remove the two disastrous performances against the Cubs, then Giolito has been even better this season with a 2.26 ERA. The White Sox have not been great on the road, but the Royals have been dreadful at home, winning just 37% of home games. They have been better when it comes to covering the spread, but the White Sox and Giolito have every chance to win this game going away.
1u – CHI White Sox -1.5 @ +130
By Ben Rolfe