WEDNESDAY SERVICE PLAYS
Re: WEDNESDAY SERVICE PLAYS
Larry Ness' 15* NL Game of the Week (35-23 w/GOW plays since Opening Day)
My 15* play is on the SF Giants at 9:05 ET. Are the Rockies finally starting to turn things around?" Colorado's 10-5 win last night over the Giants was the team's fifth win in its last six, following an eight-game losing streak. Colorado went 90-73 (plus-$2,466) last year, making them MLB's biggest "money-makers." However, even the team's current "min-streak" hasn't helped all that much, as the Rockies enter this game with an NL-worst record of 25-39 and at minus-$1,473 vs the moneyline, the Rockies are ahead of only the Tigers and Mariners among MLB's 30 teams. After batting an NL-high .280 last year and scoring the second-most runs (5.28 per) of any NL team, the Rockie bats have been fairly quiet in '08, as the team has averaged 4.25 RPG in '08 (that's more than one run per game less!). The Rockies dominated right-handers in '07, going 70-49 overall. Here at Coors, the Rockies went 39-19 vs righties, while averaging 6.0 RPG. Flashing forward to this year, the Rockies are only 18-32 vs right-handers, while averaging just 4.1 RPG. Things have really been bad on the road (8-19) but even here at Coors, Colorado is still under .500 against righties, going 10-13. More bad news comes in the form of tonight's opposing pitcher, as Colorado will have to go up against Tim Lincecum, who has quickly developed into one of the NL's (MLB's?) top young right-handed starters. Lincecum is 8-1 with a 2.15 ERA in 12 starts this year (team is 9-3) and that includes a 5-0 mark with a 1.59 ERA in six road starts (team is 5-1). Even more impressively, the Giants are 9-1 with Lincecum on the mound following a defeat (lost 10-5 yesterday), as he's gone 7-0 with an ERA of just under 2.50 plus has 65 Ks in 64.1 innings in those games. San Francisco has been 'sneaky' good on the road in '08. Last night's loss snapped a seven-game road winning streak but the Giants have still gone 10-3 away from home after opening the season by losing 14 of their first 20 road games. More good news comes San Francisco's way in that Lincecum's mound opponent is the struggling Ubaldo Jimenez, who has gone 11 starts without a win. He beat Atlanta back on April 8 for his lone victory of '08 (4-3) and will take a 1-6 mark with a 5.43 ERA into this game. The Rockies are 2-11 in his '08 starts, leaving him with a moneyline mark of minus-$1,017. That ranks him 222nd of the 223 pitchers who have made starts this season. NL Game of the Week 15* SF Giants.
Larry Ness' Las Vegas Insider-MLB (now 12-2 since May 26)
My Las Vegas Insider is on the Hou Astros at 8:05 ET. With the Brewers these last few seasons, it just seems like it's "only a matter of time" until the team falls into the consistent pattern of winning at home and losing on the road. I continually point out the team's home/away dichotomy these last two seasons ('06 and '07) when 'getting involved' with a Milwaukee game. Milwaukee's two-year mark has them 99-63 (plus-$1,950) at home but a pathetic 59-103 (minus-$3,818) on the road! One may have been fooled into thinking things would be different this year, as on May 1, the Brewers won 4-3 at Wrigley Field to take two of three games in a series with the Cubs, giving them a 9-6 road mark in '08. However, Milwaukee promptly lost NINE straight on the road and after last night's 6-1 loss, has dropped 15 of its last 20 away games. Entering tonight's game, Milwaukee is a familiar 19-10 (plus-639) at home and 14-21 (minus-$586) on the road. Manny Parra will take the mound tonight and the rookie (he appeared in only nine games last year, pitching just 26.1 innings) is following right along with his team's home/away trend in his 12 starts this season. He's got a 2.90 home ERA in seven starts (team is 5-2) and a 6.96 road ERA in five starts (team is 2-3). The Brewers face the Astros again tonight and they have hardly been a model of consistency. After opening 6-12, the Astros caught fire, winning 24 of their next 35 to reach 30-23. However, last night's 6-1 win was just their THIRD win in their last 12 games since May 28. However, on the mound tonight will be Brandon Backe and he like the Brewers, is best know for having success at home but failure on the road (it's the "perfect storm!"). Backe began his career with Tampa in '02 but came to the Astros in '04. He was part of the team's two playoff teams in '04 and '05 (lost World Series to the White Sox) but these last two years, injuries have limited him to just 13 starts. However, Backe is healthy this year and has already made 13 starts in 2008, going 4-7 with a 4.66 ERA. The team is 5-8 in his starts but his home and away breakdowns are in keeping with what's been his history since coming to the Astros. Backe owns a road ERA of 5.95 this year and quite understandably, the Astros are 1-7 in his away starts. However, his home ERA is 2.90 and they are 4-1 in those four home starts. In his injury-shortened career, the Astros are 12-22 in his road starts but 25-6 in his home starts (including his 2008 numbers). He's already faced Milwaukee twice in 2008, opposed by Parra both times. It should come as no surprise to anyone that in his May 3 start in Houston he allowed five hits and two ERs (5.2 innings) in a 6-2 win and allowed six hits and five ERs (five innings) in Milwaukee on May 30 in a 5-1 loss. Who do you think I'm taking here? Las Vegas Insider on the Hou Astros.
Re: WEDNESDAY SERVICE PLAYS
2.5-Unit Play. Take ‘Over’ 9.5 Milwaukee at Houston
Note: This is our Total of the Week.
The wind is blowing out and I expect to see some bombs being dropped off the bats of both lineups today. Both clubs were suppressed a bit by yesterday's hurlers, however today's matchup is more favorable. The Astros get a shot at left-hander Manny Parra (and they rock lefties) while Milwaukee takes its cuts against Brandon Backe (who has shown the ability to give up the big inning). We have an ump with one of the tightest zones in the league behind the dish and we have a 15 MPH wind blowing out today. So why is this week's TOTW rated so low? Because even though this is a brilliant spot I've seen the Brewers inexplicably blow too many 'over' wagers already this year. It's not going to happen today though!
1-Unit Play. Take ‘Over’ 9.5 Texas at Kansas City (8 p.m., Wednesday, June 11)
Note: I also have solid leans on the Cubs, A's and the Giants today, as well as the 'over' in the St. Louis-Cincinnati game.
Re: WEDNESDAY SERVICE PLAYS
Stadium Club Sports!
Chicago White Sox @ Detroit Tigers (Vazquez v Verlander)
Play on Chicago -104 for 3 units!
Milwaukee Brewers @ Houston (Parra v Backe)
Play on Milwaukee -102 for 2 units!
San Francisco @ Colorado (Lincecum v Jimenez)
Play on Colorado -102 for 2 units!
New York Yank’s @ Oakland (Rasner v Duchscherer)
Play on New York +106 for 2 units!