MLB picks - Monday, May 17
Arizona Diamondbacks at Los Angeles Dodgers
First pitch: 10:10 p.m. ET
TV: MLB Network
Probable pitchers: Madison Bumgarner (4-2, 4.12 ERA) vs. Walker Buehler (1-0, 3.45 ERA)
Ah, it’s not often there’s a pitching matchup pitting the old guard against the new class. That is what’s in store tonight.
Bumgarner, as one of the premier aces throughout the game for most of his career, is certainly a representative of years gone by, having racked up numerous titles and hardware. Despite an ugly start to the season, the former San Francisco Giant has harnessed old form.
How about his incredible stretch entering this series opener? In his last five starts, only five runs total have been scored off Mad Bum in 30 frames — or a 0.90 ERA!
He’s also accumulated a whopping 34 strikeouts within this timeframe compared to only two walks. Yeah, I think the veteran southpaw is in a superb rhythm right now.
The quality of his next opponent ranks highly, of course, but it’s while Los Angeles is in a troubled state. Not only have the defending champs sunk close to the .500 mark with Cody Bellinger (leg) missing in action, they now have to tread forward without Corey Seager (hand), who just went on the injured list yesterday.
Typically, this is an anticipated assignment for the longtime rival Bumgarner anyway. He’s faced the Dodgers 37 times (36 starts) lifetime, turning that workload into a pretty 2.74 ERA while weaving a very desirable 220-49 K/BB ratio across 230.1 innings.
As it is, LA is having a hard time with left-handed pitching, producing the third-lowest team OPS (.659) in that department in the National League. This doesn’t seem like a spot for a breakout.
And on the other end of this delightful meeting is surely one of the best young pitchers going in the game today, Buehler. Unsurprisingly, he’s engineering another outstanding campaign in his fifth season.
Through seven starts, Buehler owns a 3.45 ERA, which isn’t dominating, but if you look beyond that metric, he’s crafting some of his best work to date. Buehler holds a 0.90 WHIP — which would be the lowest of his career if it stays there — and he’s maintaining a tasty 47-3 K/BB ratio.
The former first-round draft pick is simply continuing what he’s done since first arriving in the big leagues. I really like him to extend that at least one more start upon Arizona’s entrance into town, as the D-backs sport a much weaker lineup when Ketel Marte (hamstring) and Christian Walker (oblique) are absent.
In addition, Buehler just thrives when he takes the mound at Dodger Stadium. He’s registered a splendid 2.62 ERA and 0.87 WHIP in his 38 career home games (34 starts), easily besting the 3.81 ERA and 1.18 WHIP he’s churned out on the road.
MLB Picks & Predictions
Pick: UNDER 7 @ -113
Monday's MLB Leans
Tigers-Mariners Under 7.5
2021 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: “20-22-2,” -4.99 units
Yesterday’s Result: Giants-Pirates Under 8 (WIN)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit