Saturday sees a virtually complete split slate with 16 games thanks to a double-header in St. Louis. With seven games in the afternoon and nine in the evening let’s see where we can find some value.
Here are Today’s MLB Picks:
Oakland Athletics @ New York Yankees
The Oakland Athletics went to town on the Yankees bullpen last night, taking them for seven earned runs in three innings. However, runs off bullpens tend to be very hit or miss and tonight the Yankees run into a pitcher with a 2.24 ERA in Yankee Stadium this season. Domingo German has pretty wild home/road splits but for our purposes his home form is all that matters. At home this season he allowed just a .157 ERA against, going at least six innings in each of his last four starts at home. I like German to restrict the Athletics tonight and keep them under 4.5 runs
1u – Oakland Athletics Under 4.5 Team Runs @ +104
Minnesota Twins @ Detroit Tigers
Oh, the Tigers, the reliably bad Tigers. Their last four home games have seen them go 0-4 and fail to cover all four times. Now you might say that given that they 27% of the time at home they are due one, but I do not see it happening today. The problem for them is that the Twins also cover 60% of the time on the road. Matthew Boyd had been the Tigers stand out pitcher but that has fallen apart somewhat lately. Three of his last four starts have seen him allow five or more earned runs, including his last two home games in which he allowed 11 earned runs in eight innings to the Royals and Mariners. Now he is facing a Twins team that took him for seven earned last time out and are averaging over 10 runs per game in their last three, as well as 6.16 runs per game on average on the road this season. Martin Perez has had a couple of rocky months himself for the Twins, but his last three starts have seen him allow just four earned runs in 17 innings, including two road starts and a matchup with the Tigers. All of this gives me two plays here in this one. The Twins to score over 4.5 runs and to cover the spread.
1u – Minnesota Twins Over 4.5 Team Runs @ -133
1u – Minnesota Twins -1.5 @ +110
Los Angeles Dodgers @ Arizona Diamondbacks
I agonised over this one because picking against Clayton Kershaw and Robbie Ray is tough, but the numbers suggest there could be some runs scored in this one tonight. The Diamondbacks rank 2nd in batting average, and fourth in both ISO and wRC+ against left-handed pitchers this season, including taking Hyun-Jin Ryu for seven earned runs in the first game of this series. The Dodgers have more troubles against lefties and could find it tough getting hold of Robbie Ray in this start. I am going to take the underdog Diamondbacks to make it three in a row against the Dodgers and continue their strong performances against lefties.
1u – Arizona Diamondbacks ML @ +130
By Ben Rolfe