Friday Service Plays

Re: Friday Service Plays

King Creole

Seattle Supersonics @ San Antonio Spurs
1* Play on: SEATTLE SUPERSONICS

A pretty hefty line in tonight's game for the Spurs... and we note that San Antonio is 2-8 ATS in their history when favored by -17 or more points. Withing that 2-8 ATS 'set', we note that the Spurs are a PERFECT 0-7 ATS when favored by this many points when their current YTD winning percentage is .666 or higher.

San Antonio 's**t the bed' a couple of nights ago as they were favored at home against the Phoenix Suns.... and were shocked as they lost by 17 points. We note that the Spurs are a PERFECT 0-4 ATS at home off a SU home loss of 15+ points. More importantly, they qualify in a great 2007/08 'Play AGAINST' System:

NBA teams are 3-9 ATS this season off a SU home loss of 15+ points as a FAVORITE of -5 or more. If that last loss was versus a fellow Conference opponent, these 'shell-shocked' teams are a PERFECT 0-7 ATS.

Seattle completes the "Texas Triangle" tonight as they have played Houston and Dallas in their last two road games. In the 2007/08 season, NBA road teams playing off BB road losses of 15+ points each are 8-2 ATS when taking on a team with a current YTD winning percentage of .666 or higher... and a PERFECT 3-0 ATS if that opponent is off a DD SU loss (like the Spurs ARE).

Finally, we note that in the ALL-TIME history of our Playbook NBA database, NBA teams are 9-3 ATS on the road against the Spurs (when they are .666 >) AFTER playing a road game against Houston... and a road game against Dallas. These teams are 7-1 ATS when playing off a SUATS loss (Sonics).

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GAMBLERSWORLD TIP OF THE DAY

Oakland Athletics vs. Cleveland Indians

Prediction: Cleveland Indians

The Oakland Athletics and the Cleveland Indians will both be trying to pick up a win on Friday when they battle at Progressive Field. The Athletics will trot ace Joe Blanton out to the mound in this one. Righthander Blanton has a 0-2 record and a 3.44 ERA this season. Blanton's opponent in this one will be CC Sabathia. The Indians ace lefthander has a 7.60 ERA to go along with a 0-1 record this season. Oddsmakers currently have the Indians listed as 160-moneyline favorites versus the Athletics, while the game's total is sitting at 8½. The A's scored twice in the top of the 12th inning and defeated the Blue Jays 3-2 for a sweep of the three-game series on Thursday. The A's won the game as +135 underdogs, while the five runs fell UNDER the posted over/under (9). Travis Buck was 3-for-6 at the plate and drove in all three Oakland runs. Joey Devine tossed two shutout innings of relief for the win, and Keith Foulke grabbed his first save of the season. The Indians lost 9-5 to the Angels in the rubber match of the series on Wednesday. Oddsmakers had the Indians at EVEN odds in that game, while the combined 14 runs made it OVER the posted over/under (9). Jhonny Peralta was 3-for-5 at the plate with a solo home run for the Indians. Paul Byrd was rocked for six runs over three innings in the loss. Current streak: Oakland has won 3 straight games. Team records: Oakland: 6-4 SU Cleveland: 4-5 SU Oakland most recently: When playing on Friday are 4-6 Before playing Cleveland are 4-6 After playing Toronto are 8-2 After a win are 5-5 Cleveland most recently: When playing on Friday are 6-4 Before playing Oakland are 4-6 After playing LA Angels are 4-6 After a loss are 6-4 A few trends to consider: Oakland is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Oakland's last 7 games when playing Cleveland The total has gone UNDER in 9 of Oakland's last 13 games Oakland is 6-16 SU in its last 22 games when playing on the road against Cleveland Cleveland is 8-2 SU in its last 10 games at home Cleveland is 16-6 SU in its last 22 games when playing at home against Oakland The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Cleveland's last 7 games when playing Oakland Cleveland is 2-5 SU in its last 7 games

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Harris Sports San Diego Padres +101

KM Sports Computer Sheet LA Angels Under 8.0

KingTSports St Louis Cardinals -128

CM Million Dollar Picks Washington Wizards +5

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Sports Monitor
Suns/Rockets Under


Freepicks.net
DBacks


Easy Money
Texas Rangers


Winning Colors Picks
Orlando Magic


Billy Coleman
Mets


Valley Sports
Sonics
Astros

Dr Vegas
Dodgers


THE VEGAS BEARD
Yankees

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Ferringo MLB

4* Atl
2* Boston
1.5* Houston
1.5* LAA

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Re: Friday Service Plays

David Chan

Chicago Cubs @ Philadelphia Phillies
PICK: Philadelphia Phillies

I see this as a letdown game for the Cubbies as they come in riding a five-game winning streak, with all five of those wins coming against divisional opponents.

The Phillies are trying to stem the tide after losing back-to-back games to the Mets, the most recent coming in extra innings last night. They'll face a tall task against Cubs ace Carlos Zambrano tonight, but I'm confident they'll rise to the occasion.

Philadelphia is 11-5 in the last 16 meetings overall between these two, and 6-3 at home dating back to the start of the 2005 season. I'm predicting a strong effort out of Phillies starter Brett Myers tonight after he was mediocre at best over his first two efforts of the year. He has lead his team to victory in each of his last three outings against the Cubbies.

The Phillies offense hasn't performed well over the last two games, but they do the unthinkable and knock around Carlos Zambrano tonight. On paper, it certainly would appear that the Cubs are the easy choice tonight, but as they say, that's why they play the game. Solid value on the Phils here. Best of luck, DC.

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LARRY NESS

Washington Wizards @ Detroit Pistons
PICK: Washington Wizards

REASON FOR PICK: The Pistons have locked up the No. 2 seed in the East and I've seen no indication that they are in the least bit concerned with their record in comparison to any of the top teams in the West (in a possible look-ahead to homecourt advantage in the NBA Finals). Detroit's lost its last two games and in the team's Wednesday loss in Philly, saw six reserves get at least 15 minutes of playing time, while starters Tayshaun Prince, Antonio McDyess and Rasheed Wallace all played fewer than 30 minutes. Rip Hamilton has missed the team's last five games with a sore hip and while I'm sure he'd like to "get some work," his playing status is very uncertain. While the Pistons may be coasting, the Wizards are still battling for playoff positioning. They are currently No. 5 in the East but while they are just two games behind the Cavs (No. 4), they are also just two games ahead of No. 7 Toronto (one game ahead of No. 6 Philly). The good news for Washington is that its "Big Three," Arenas, Butler and Jamison, are now all back on the court. Arenas has played in three of the team's last four games, coming off the bench to average 14.3 PPG in 21.3 MPG. Jamison (21.5-10.2) and Butler (20.6-6.8-4.9) have carried the team all season but guard Stevenson (11.3) and center Haywood 910.8-7.2) have been solid all year. Five other players have averaged between 6.1 and 8.8 PPG this season, as the Wizards just could be a team to be reckoned with, now that the "Big Three" are back. It just seems to "make sense" to take the points with Washington in this one.

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Northcoast

Triple Crown 3* KC Royals

California Sports 4* Cavs

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Re: Friday Service Plays

DAVE MALINSKY

LA Angels (HT) @ Seattle Mariners (HT) First 5 Innings
3* ANGELS/SEATTLE First Half Under 4

When a Major League hitter has trouble handling a certain pitch, he is referred to as having a “hole in his swing”. This game shows us one in which the oddsmakers have that same problem. We can play this at Under 4 -105, and in some places at Even money, and that shows the kind of generic First Half/Full Game adjustment in which we can find significant advantages. We do not want any part of the late innings here with neither Francisco Rodriguez nor J. J. Putz available, but at this fair line we can reduce it to Jared Weaver vs. Felix Hernandez, and these first five innings should flow rather quickly.

Both starters enter this on top of their game(s). Weaver had a terrific 5-0/1.37 spring, with only three walks in 26.1 innings, and has followed that up with a 2.02 over his first 13.1 “real” innings, with only two walks. Throwing strikes is the key tonight because if you do not give anything away, the Mariner offense is not going to produce much. Seattle is far below league average at key offensive positions like 1B, RF and DH, and that will make the Mariners hard-pressed to hit quality pitching all season. And while being dead last in the A.L. in batting average at .232 makes a statement on its own, we are not sure if any team in the Major’s has faced a weaker corps of starting pitchers so far. In other words, we may soon find that they are even worse than their already dismal numbers show, and there is little in the way of Weaver’s fine form continuing.

When it comes to form, however, Weaver is not even close to Hernandez. We keep seeing gradual steps towards the Seattle right-hander becoming perhaps the best pitcher in the sport soon, and he has yet to allow an earned run through his first 15 innings this season. On a cool evening in the Pacific northwest that is not likely to change - his confidence level has him aggressively attacking hitters, and he can take the bat out of the hands of a big part of the Angel lineup. Leadoff man Chone Figgins has not been able to read him (.150 over 20 at-bats, with five strikeouts), and until Howie Kendrick can come back the middle of the infield is punchless, with both Maicer Izturis (.143 this season) and Erick Aybar (.176) bringing decent gloves but weak bats. Those two are a combined 4-22 lifetime vs. Hernandez, so this is not the spot in which they get turned around. When the table setters can not get on base the opportunities for big innings are not there.

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2-Minute Warning

LA ANGELS (WEAVER) over Seattle (Hernandez)

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BOB BALFE

Cubs -110 over Phillies
Zambrano/Myers

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Mike Rose

Detroit Tigers @ Chicago White Sox Under 11.0 

The D-train made his debut for Detroit against the White Sox last Saturday. The lefty only went five innings giving up one hit and three earned runs, but walked a lofty seven batters, as his control was shaky throughout. He’s only made one career start at US Cellular, and had to depart the game in the second inning with arm problems.

Toeing the bump for Chicago will be Jose Contreras who’ll look to bounce back from his first start of the season against Detroit. The White Sox did win the game, but neither Contreras nor management can be happy with his results. He only lasted five innings giving up 10 hits and five runs (four earned) while walking four and only fanning a pair. This coming off a woeful 2007 campaign has White Sox nation nervous about Contreras’ future. He’s 8-6 with a 4.44 ERA and 1.311 WHIP in his career against the Detroit Tigers. Chicago lost two of his three starts against the Tigers last season.

The White sox are 5-2 SU their L/7 against a left-handed starter, and the Tigers are 2-5 SU their L/7 trips to US Cellular Field. The Tigers have also dropped their first six contests against the AL Central this season. The under is 4-1 in Contreras’ L/5 starts with 6 days of rest, and the under is also a $$$-making 15-5 the L/20 times these teams have squared off in Chicago.

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Info Plays

3* on Cincinnati Reds -106
(Listing Volquez and Maholm)

Cincinnati sends another sensational rookie to the mound of Friday against the struggling Pittsburgh Pirates.  Edison Volquez (1-0, 1.69 ERA) allowed just one run and five hits in 5 1/3 innings to lead the Reds to an 8-2 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday.  The 24-year-old righthander struck out eight and walked just two in his first start with Cincinnati after he was acquired from the Texas Rangers during the offseason.  Pittsburgh has lost 5 of their last 6 games overall.  Pittsburgh is 5-16 (-12.5 Units) against the money line in home games after 3 straight games without a stolen base over the last 2 seasons.  The Pirates have a really hard time manufacturing runs with their lack of speed.  Bet Cincinnati on the road.

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Drew Gordon

1. 300,000* NY Knicks
2. 50,000* Pacers
3. 50,000* Rangers

1. NY Knicks- For as much (well-deserved) flak as the Knicks have caught this season, their recent play gives them tremendous value in this game for several reasons:

First, you've got to like their effort over their 3-game win streak, which includes impressive outright wins over Orlando and at Detroit! Not only that, but they've been a solid bet of late, covering 7 of their last 8 games, and playing like a team that actually cares about winning. Maybe they're trying to save Isiah's job, maybe they're using these final games to interview for GM Donnie Walsh and the new regime...

Whatever the reason, the fact remains, the Knicks are playing solid basketball right now.

Second, I'm a firm believer that the guys in Vegas have caught on to the Hawks. In other words, because Atlanta has to win in order to hold onto the 8th and final playoff spot, we know they're motivated, but they also happen to be overvalued at this point. Despite the fact the Knicks are playing well, and Atlanta is absolute garbage on the road (11-28 SU & 16-23 ATS away), New York still finds itself a strong dog in this spot... Why? Because the public has locked onto these "must win to get into the playoffs" type teams, but sharp bettors know when to jump off, and that time is now.

Ironically, over their last 5 games, both of these teams have almost identical numbers, averaging about 106 ppg, while allowing about 106 ppg on the defensive end. Make no mistake, the Hawks aren't nearly as good on the road offensively, while the Knicks limited Orlando's high-octane offense to 90 points 5 days ago!

Finally, let's look over their match ups this season, as the Hawks have won all 3 SU, but its the Knicks who've grabbed the cash in 2 of those 3 contests. And you could easily argue that this is a much better version of the Knicks, playing team ball and relishing in their "spoiler" role. Look guys, the Hawks may still win this game, but if you've seen Atlanta play on the road this season, there's no question the Knicks grab the cash here, and possibly the outright upset.

Take the NY Knicks plus the points over the Hawks as your top-rated play of the day.

2. Pacers- I realize that I said in the above analysis that these kind of "must win to get into the playoffs" type teams are dangerous, but this case is different, and I'll explain why:

I said the guys in Vegas have caught onto the Hawks, because the public believes their playing "harder" to maintain their playoff position. Therefore, Atlanta finds itself a relatively strong road favorite tonight in New York, and for a team that's 16-23 ATS away, that's ridiculous.

However, in this case, Indiana is undervalued, as a relatively strong dog, playing for their playoff life tonight in Philly. Remember guys, the 76ers have already clinched a playoff spot, and are playing just for seeding, which isn't nearly as strong a motivator as the Pacers have (to just get into the playoffs).

Not only that, but Indiana has won and covered both meetings against the 76ers this season, including their last one, a 110-103 victory in Philly, without the services of Jermaine O'Neal. Couple in the fact that the Pacers are playing well, winners of 5 of their last 6 games, including a critical one against Atlanta in their last one, and this Indiana team has no excuse not to keep this game competitive tonight.

Finally, the biggest reason the Pacers have been winning can be summed up in one word: Defense. Over their last 5 games the Pacers are allowing just 94 ppg on 42% shooting! When you consider, on the season they allow 105 ppg on on 45% shooting, you see just how hard this Pacers team is playing right now.

Bottom line, look for Indiana to keep this game close behind their new-found love for defense, and the numbers back my claim: Pacers are 6-2 ATS over their last 8 match ups with Philly, and the underdog is a solid 13-6-1 ATS over their last 20 meetings! In the end, Pacers grab the cash at the Wachovia Center Friday night!

Take the Pacers plus the points over the 76ers in this NBA match up.

3. Rangers- Several things I like about the Rangers tonight, but let's start with the Blue Jays absolute futility in Arlington, where they've gone a pathetic 3-16 since the 2004 season! Few places have seen Toronto struggle as much the Rangers Ballpark, and they're in for another tough night in this one.

While I admit Jesse Litsch looked good against Boston Saturday, there's no doubt Vincent Padilla has looked better. He opened the season by crusing past the Mariners, allowing 1 run on 8 hits over 6 innings. And then followed that effort with his first win of the season, allowing 3 earned on 9 hits over 7 innings against a tough Angels offense!

Both of those efforts came on the road, which is a surprise considering Padilla's troubles on the highway last season... But one place he didn't struggle was in Arlington, where he went 4-3 with a solid 3.28 ERA. Not only that, but Padilla's career numbers against the Blue Jays are impressive, going 3-1 with 3.25 ERA in 4 starts. Little reason not to expect another quality start here tonight.

Biggest problem for the Blue Jays has been their bullpen, which despite posting a 2.76 ERA on the season, was at fault for all 3 Toronto losses in their series with Oakland this week. Both Accardo and League have been unimpressive to say the least, and even if Listch delivers a solid effort, one has to question the Jays with their bullpen suddenly struggling.

Bottom line, look for the Rangers and Padilla to add to the Blue Jays woes with another strong effort tonight in Arlington. Besides the fact Toronto has struggled at Rangers Ballpark, Padilla seemingly always brings his "A" game against them, and tonight will be no different. Rangers roll!

Take the Rangers behind Padilla over the Blue Jays and Litsch in this MLB match up.

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Paul Bovi/Panorama Sports

LA Lakers/New Orleans OVER 212

Minnesota +12.5 visiting Orlando

The Lakers waxed the paper Clips last night...no Maggette, no Kaman, no Cassell...no contest as they emptied the bench on their in state rivals. Tonight they get New Orleans' finest who should be able to pierce that soft defense often enough to keep this one competitive and full of action. Look for a huge game by Kobe Bryant (40+ points) who should be inspired as he was outscored by Luke Walton last night. This one should be a dog fight. 117-116. Forget the side. GO OVER

Ho hum. The Magic are locked into the 3rd seed so these are just formalities as they go through the motions leading up to their opening round playoff series against an opponent TBD. The Wolves are still playing hard which makes the dozen points very appealing. Orlando did blow out the Bulls but they needed that one after getting whipped up on in the Garden. Chicago scored all of 13 in the 4th. The Wolves hang tight and come in under the frothy number.   

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Frank Rosenthal

NBA HOOPS
CAVS-4
UNDER 198
HEAT+5
OVER 192.5
KNICKS OVER 208
ROCKETS+2.5
LAKERS OVER 211.5

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
DBACKS-140
GIANTS+120
DODGERS-105
YANKS-105
CWS-105

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Stephen Nover

Seattle SuperSonics @ San Antonio Spurs
PICK: Under

REASON FOR PICK: I'm not a parlay guy, but a 'dog and 'under' parlay sure makes sense here. The Spurs are laying a huge number despite their offense going in the tank. San Antonio has failed to break the 80-point barrer in their past three games.

Not helping matters for the Spurs is Manu Ginobili is out. The Spurs' second-leading scorer will miss this matchup with a groin injury. He's one of the few Spurs players who can create his own shots. The Sonics can now pay more attention to the Spurs' frontcourt without the threat of Ginobili's pentration and dish offs.

The Sonics are terrible on offense, too, scoring 84 points or less in all but one of their last five games. It's painful to try to watch them score, especially with Chris Wilcox out. Their front-court contributes nothing in the scoring column. If Kevin Durant isn't hot, they have little shot of breaking 85 points. The Spurs have the third-best defense in the NBA.

Yet the oddsmaker seems slow to adjust to Seattle's totals. The Sonics have gone 'under' in eight of their last 10. They should be good for a strong defensive effort here being coached by P.J. Carlesimo.

Carlesimo knows the Spurs well, having been Gregg Popovich's lead assistant for four years until taking the Seattle job this season. He'll have the Sonics prepared for San Antonio's pick-and-rolls

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Re: Friday Service Plays

LEE KOSTROSKI

Detroit Tigers @ Chicago White Sox
PICK: Chicago White Sox

The White Sox will get another shot at Dontrelle Willis and after he walked seven in just five innings in his American League debut Chicago will be prepared to make him throw strikes. Willis walked 15 batters in just over 16 innings pitched this spring and he also had just twelve strikeouts with an ERA of 8.64. Willis was a big-name acquisition for the Tigers but he was not very successful last season and his teams are 5-16 in his last 21 starts. The White Sox also just faced him and had success against him in Detroit last week.

The Tigers are off to a terrible start and the offense deserves an equal share of the blame, although the pitching has been bad. Detroit is hitting just .241 as a team and had failed to top five runs in a game before the outburst in Boston on Wednesday. The White Sox are off to a solid start with great production from the lineup. Chicago has scored at least five runs in five consecutive games and the White Sox will also enjoy an off-day with the rainout at home on Thursday while the Tigers must face travel back from Boston after Thursday’s evening game.

The Chicago bullpen has been outstanding this season and the Sox have held on to win several close games with success after the starting pitching. Jose Contreras did not have great success against Detroit in his first start but he was able to limit the damage and was also hurt by poor fielding on a few plays by his defense. The Sox still won that game and Chicago is 6-2 in his last eight starts going back to last season. Contreras did not have a great season last year but was very solid in 2005 and 2006 and is capable of regaining that form. Contreras also had a poor opening start last season but rebounded nicely, allowing just one run and five hits in his next two starts combined.

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Black Widow Sports

1* on Mets/Brewers OVER 9 Runs
(List Parra and Figueroa)

Nelson Figueroa makes his first start in more than 3 years for the New York Mets today.  Manny Parra picked up his first career win against the San Francisco Giants on Saturday for the Brewers.  Now these two inexperienced starters in Parra and Figueroa get to face two of the most dangerous lineups in all of baseball.  All of this inexperience on the mound will result in a high scoring ball game at New York tonight.  The Brewers are scoring 5.3 runs per game this season while the Mets are up there at 5.5 runs per game.  Both averages will increase when this one is all said and done.  Milwaukee is 50-27 OVER (+21.7 Units) when the money line is +125 to -125 over the last 2 seasons.  The Mets are 19-6 OVER (+12.4 Units) when playing on Friday over the last 2 seasons.  Milwaukee is 30-11 OVER (+18.7 Units) vs. NL teams allowing 4.3 or less runs/game on the season over the last 2 seasons.  Take the OVER 9 Runs here.

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