WEDNESDAY SERVICE PLAYS

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BRIAN MARSHALL

Chicago White Sox/Kansas City Royals
Plays On: Chicago/Kansas City Over 9

Game Analyses: Do you love high-scoring games? If yes, you will love Wednesday's MLB game between the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals.

The Chicago White Sox will be lead by starting pitcher Javier Vazquez. Jose Contreras has been having huge pitching problems as of late. In fact, Javier Vazquez has a 5.59 ERA in his last 3 starts. We see Javier Vazquez giving up many runs once again today.

The Kansas City Royals will be lead by starting pitcher Brian Bannister. Brian Bannister has also been having huge pitching problems as of late. In fact, Brian Bannister has a 7.02 ERA in his last 3 starts. We see Brian Bannister also giving up many runs once again today.

To say the least, we should see many runs scored tonight!

Take the Chicago White Sox/Kansas City Royals Over 9

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JB's Computer Picks

Detroit Tigers -150

Pittsburgh Pirates +105

Chicago Cubs -185

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PlusLineSports Daily Baseball Selection

Colorado Rockies vs. Milwaukee Brewers

Milwaukee Brewers -1.5

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WINNERS EDGE

Florida Marlins - 110 , 2 units

NY Yankees - 125 , 2 units

K.C Royals + 110 , 1 unit

Braves/Dodgers over 7.5 , 1 unit

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EZWINNERS

5 STAR: (901) FLORIDA (+$100) over San Diego
(Listing Olsen and Baek) (Risking $500 to win $500)

5 STAR: (906) PHILADELPHIA (-$130) over St. Louis
(Listing Happ and Mulder) (Risking $650 to win $500)

3 STAR: (915) ATLANTA (+$102) over LA Dodgers
(Listing Hudson only) (Risking $300 to win $306)

2 STAR: (927) CHICAGO (-$124) over Kansas City
(Listing Vazquez only) (Risking $248 to win $200)

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James Patrick

Tigers


Jimmy Moore

Tampa Bay


Armvin Sports

Reds
Royals


Computer Sports

Phillies


Glen Mcgrew

Astros


Joe Wiz

Nationals


Razor Sharp Sports

Yankees


Bob Donahue

A's


Big Time Sports

Clev/Det Over


SCOTT DELANEY

DODGERS


HOT LOCK SPORTS

Twins/Red Sox Over 9


CHRIS JORDAN

ANGELS


Mike Volpe

Tampa Bay 


FLORIDA BOOKY BUSTERS 

Tampa Bay 


Insider Sports Report

Tampa Bay -105


MVP

Athletics -1.5


VEGAS STEAMLINE

OAKLAND -155


#1 SPORTS

ASTROS


HUDDLE UP

NY Yankees -115


THE  SCOUT

Seattle +145


TOTALS 4 U

CLEVELAND/DETROIT UNDER 10


PLATINUM PLAYS

ASTROS - 120


ARTHUR RALPH

LA DODGERS


The Parlay King

WSox -1.5 +130 


JEFF BENTON

REDS


JerseySteveWins

NY Yankees


Templer's Sports Picks    

Milwaukee

   
Fast Eddie Sports    

Atlanta


CAPPERS ACCESS

Marlins
Tigers


PAUL LEINER

Yankees -115


DONALD TRAN

Tampa Bay +110


JOE WIZ

Nationals


Jeff Saad

Astros


Goodfellasports

TB/NY OVER 10


LT's Lock

Cardinals +130


Gamblers Data

Brewers -1.5


PowerPlayWins

Phillies -135

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Locksmith Sports

1 Unit on Baltimore Orioles +150

I think Toronto 's struggles with lefty pitching will really show up at the plate tonight.  The Jays are just 1-8 in their last 9 games vs. a left-handed starter.  Humpday has not treated Toronto well either as it is 0-5 in its last 5 Wednesday games.  The Blue Jays are just 3-9 in their last 12 games following a win, 3-8 in their last 11 during game 2 of a series, and 5-11 in their last 16 vs. their division.  Baltimore is 10 games over .500 when playing at night this season while the Jays are 12 games under .500 at night.  Bet the O's in a great value spot.

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Players of America

Cincinnati Reds vs. Chicago Cubs
The Play: Cincinnati Reds +175.0
Star Value: 1* (10 Units)

Sticking in the NL for some midweek action, we're going to ride the Reds train again as they continue there series with the Cubs at Wrigley Field.and this is why.

The Reds are valued here, and big time. This squad stunk it up in the opener last night with Harang on the rubber, but if any of you watched the game the Cubs were less than impressive from an all around standpoint. Cincinnati is just a few games under .500 so far this year and you can bet you're behind that Dusty Baker and staff is convincing this team that they are capable of making a late push towards the post season. Is he right? Who knows.only time will tell us that? However, this line up of the Reds can be potent and when their all clicking, watch out. I remember a few weeks back when the Reds marched into Cleveland (who at the time was playing some pretty decent ball) and swept the Tribe right off their feet. This team is young and we see them meshing together each step of the way.

The Cubs come in at -180 favorites Wednesday night and expect all the sharps to be licking their chops with a "Guaranteed Win" on this match up. Think again. Cincinnati is 11-4 in their last 15 Wednesday games and this one sets the stage perfectly.

The young righty Johnny Cueto was the hype of the media early in the year as he dropped jaws with his performances night in and night out. He has leveled off a bit and snapped back to reality with a 7-8 total record, 2-1 in his last three. He has a WHIP of 1.34 and an ERA of right around 4.60. To date, the Reds have proven to the world they can play with the best in the NL this year. They rocked Chicago 9-0 earlier in the season and Cueto has already defeated these guys himself in a 5-3 head nod in May. The series has sort of been back and forth in the six times these two teams have met this year and they stand at 3-3 a piece.

Carlos Zambrano toes the dirt for the Cubbies in a late pitching change (Dempster forecasted). We all know that name, and we know what he is capable of doing night in and night out. However, this guy lacks consistency in my opinion. He is 9-3 on the year and 1-1 his last three starts. Last season Carlos pitched against virtually this same Reds team and went 0-3. This Cubs team knows how to play some ball, don't get me wrong, but they have not been the same since losing all-star left fielder Alfonso Soriano to a broken left hand. It seems a little chemistry or leadership was lost after that point, and Cinci is the one team capable of exploiting that weakness. Jim Edmonds is also doubtful for the Cubs as he is dealing with a sprained left thumb. Two dents on the offensive end which are capable of haunting this team for days to come.

The value on this team is too good to pass up, setting up a nice situational play. The Cubs are no one to be laying such a large number at this standing point in the season, so give us the Reds and all the plus money for a 1* wager on Wednesday night in the Windy City.

TREND OF THE GAME: The Reds are 11-4 in their last 15 Wednesday games.

Cincinnati 5, Chicago 2


Florida Marlins vs. San Diego Padres
The Play: Florida Marlins +105.0
Star Value: 1* (10 Units)

Heading across the country now we're going to settle in on the shores of the Pacific for this cross-country showdown. The Marlins face the Padres again leveling out their series at Petco Park.

It has been a pretty entertaining outing thus far between these two. Both seem to have an opposite approach as Florida is notorious for throwing up runs and San Diego loves to play defense in that giant ball park of theirs. The odds makers might have been confused when making this line, because it really stands out to researchers like us.

Scott Olsen is in the spotlight at 3:35PM EST in an attempt to keep a good thing going for the fish. Scott is 0-0 without a decision his last three starts, and something tells me this guy has got to be hungry to finally get another win. He's just 4-4 on the season pitching over 111 innings with a WHIP of 1.30. Also, his ERA is under 3.95 all season. On the opposite side of the ball, Florida might see the return of second baseman Dan Uggla as his status is upgraded to questionable for Wednesday's game. Uggla sprained his ankle but is a vital part of this Florida squad. This Marlins team knows how to score. Over numbers favor this game, but a victory looks even better. The fish haven't missed a beat offensively losing Dan and Brett Carrol (separated shoulder) and have flown over the total 38 of the last 50 road games.

The Marlins will be seeing the stuff of right-hander Cha Seung Baek on Wednesday. Baek is 1-2 his last three starts and 2-3 on the year. In just 35 short innings, Cha has given up 36 hits and has an ERA of nearly 5.00. Florida has practically owned the series between these two this year going 4-1, but neither of these heavers has seen a start against each other. Offensively, the Padres aren't exactly healthy either, which probably leads to their meager 35-55 record. Brian Giles is dealing with a sore hamstring and is questionable for Wednesday's game with Florida and catcher Michael Barrett is out indefinitely. Tadahito Iguchi is also on the 15-day disabled list with a separated shoulder and the pitching staff has more dilemmas on their hands than one can imagine. The Pads bullpen is soft right now, leaving the flood gates wide open to a shoot out tonight which without a doubt favors the Marlins.

With the above being said, we're going to take Olsen and the fish in this one for a 1* selection.

TREND OF THE GAME: The Padres are 1-9 in their last ten home games.

Florida 8, San Diego 3


Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Washington Nationals
The Play: Washington Nationals +105.0
Star Value: 1* (10 Units)

The Diamondbacks continue their set with the Nationals in the newly constructed National's Park in Washington. A low scoring offensive struggle Tuesday night should have these two ready to box come Wednesday.

Micah Owings will have the leather in hand on Wednesday for the Dbacks as he takes the mound with a 6-7 record in 2008, and a lousy 0-3 in his last three outings. Owings faced the Nats on May 5th this season and was routed in a 7-4 loss. Micah went 6.1 innings and gave up eight hits and six earned runs along with a long ball. When on the road, Owings trembles. He is 3-4 away from Arizona and has pitched about 48 innings giving up 49 hits, 30 runs and walking 19.

The Backs will be keying in on the material from lefty John Lannan. Don't get me wrong, this guy is nothing to write home about with his 4-9 overall record.so we won't sit here and try to convince you to play them because of this guy. His ERA is respectable at 3.55 and he has a WHIP of 1.31. The Diamondbacks have a 2-1 lead in this year's series versus the Nationals and have faced about every big name pitcher on the squad including Brandon Webb and Dan Haren. This is a perfect opportunity for them to sneak in a win and even things up.

A pretty decent price here on the home underdogs. Let's grab the Nats and watch them squeak out a win in a midday showdown against the foes of Arizona.

TREND OF THE GAME: The Diamondbacks are 8-21 in their last 29 road games.

Washington 5, Arizona 3


Seattle Mariners vs. Oakland Athletics
The Play: Over 8.0
Star Value: 1* (10 Units)

Our final selection of the evening on Wednesday takes place at 10:05PM EST on the west coast. The Seattle Mariners hop on the highway and head to the west coast rival Oakland A's. Like a few other games, both of these teams struggled to put up runs in a match that was a real pitcher's dual on Tuesday night. However, both are capable of taking part in a shootout and Wednesday we plan to see that.

The Mariners are atrocious. At 35-54 they are deemed the leagues worst team, slightly ahead of the Cleveland Indians. Seattle doesn't really have a choice because you can't play the game without a pitcher, but if you could, they might be better off. The right hander Miguel Batista is scheduled to throw the balls and strikes (likely more balls than strikes) in Oakland. Batista is 4-10 on the year and batter's love seeing this guy in the dugout warming up pregame. He is 0-2 in his last three starts and has a combined ERA of 6.28 this season. Miguel has flaunted his stuff in 74+ innings this season and given up 91 hits. Pretty remarkable.really. The problem isn't just the pitching for this squad, no; no.it goes far beyond that. The team is in disarray. Some nights they look like an average team, other they look like they should be playing Little League. Needless to say, we're going with the over because of their pitching woes alone.

Oakland has elected to start heaver Joe Blanton who is equally terrible at 5-11 this season. He has an ERA approaching 5.00 and teams just happen to love to tee off on this guy too. So, with the pitching match up as it stands, you may ask yourself "Why is this total so low at only eight runs?" Well, you not be thinking that because you know more than us.but that's what we're thinking. Last season, these teams played each other 14 times. We realize that rosters change, but in those 14 games the total soared over eight 11 times. This season is looking to be the same with the few meetings already being half over the stated totals.

After last nights bore-fest.expect these two teams to get the crowd back into it. Look for an all out shoot out in Oakland on Wednesday as these two teams exchange blows back and forth all night.

TREND OF THE GAME: The OVER is 8-1 in Batista's last 9 overall starts.

Oakland 9, Seattle 5

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KARL GARRETT

Cleveland at DETROIT -145

Lay the lumber with the streaking Tigers.

Detroit leads the majors with 21 wins since June 7th, and they are now 26-17 at home this season with last night's romp over hapless Cleveland.

The Indians threw in the towel when they traded CC Sabathia, and this team just can't wait until the season is over. Cleveland's losing streak is at 9 in a row, and pitcher Paul Byrd continues to get shelled with regularity.

Byrd's last 3 starts show 14 runs allowed in just 18 innings of work. Byrd stands at 3-10 with an ERA well over 5 for the season, and is likely to absorb another setback tonight.

Detroit starter Eddie Bonine is 2-0 at home this season, and the Tigers have captured 3 of the 5 season meetings at Comerica thus far this year against the Tribe.

Have to lay the lumber, and back the Tigers to hand the Indians loss #10 in a row.

1♦ DETROIT

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SPORTS GAMBLING HOTLINE

Cincinnati at CUBS

Tonight a RUN LINE release on the Cubbies, as we like Chicago to manhandle Cincinnati and Johnny Cueto.

The Cubs easily dispatched the Reds, 7-3 last night, and tonight it should be a similar finale.

Cueto is just 2-5 on the road with a 5.49 ERA, while Cubs starter Carlos Zambrano stands at 4-0 at home with an ERA just over 2.

Zambrano is a dominant 2-0 versus the Reds this year, working 15 innings of 2 run ball, and the Cubbies are 3-1 at home this season against a Cincy team that has had trouble winning away from home.

Cincinnati is just 17-29 on the road, while Chicago is 34-10 at home this year. This one has the makings of another lopsided final tally.

Play on the Cubs on the RUN LINE.

5♦ CUBS -1 1/2 RUNS

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LT Profits

Minnesota Twins @ Boston Red Sox Under 9.0

The Boston Red Sox and Minnesota Twins went Over last night after a 1-0 game in the series opener, but we look for the total output tonight to be closer to the first game of this series than Game 2.

Red Sox ace Josh Beckett is in good form, as he has rattled off four straight Quality Starts and he has seven such outings in his last eight starts. After a bit of a rough start this season, Beckett now has a 3.70 ERA and an excellent 1.11 WHIP, and we see no reason why he cannot dominate the rest of the year like Boston expected him to right out of the gate.

Now Livan Hernandez does put too many men on base for our taste for Minnesota, be he does have three Quality Starts in his last four outings, and his nine wins this season are not a total fluke, as he has made an art out of pitching well with runners on. His first start vs. the Red Sox this season was a typical one, as he allowed 10 hits yet recorded a Quality Start, allowing three runs in six innings of a 7-3 Minnesota win.

While their styles may differ, look for both starters to keep the scoring down in this game.

Pick: Twins, Red Sox Under 9


Chicago White Sox -125

Javier Vazquez of the Chicago White Sox and Brian Bannister of the Kansas City Royals may be off form lately, but the recent performances of these pitchers vs. their respective opponents tonight and a super Chicago bullpen should make the difference.

Besides, Vazquez did appear to turn things around last start, tossing a Complete Game four-hitter with 10 strikeouts in a tough-luck 3-2 loss to the Oakland Athletics, snapping a streak of five straight starts without a Quality Start. He was certainly dominant the last time he faced the Royals last September, allowing two runs on five hits in eight innings with an impressive 13 strikeouts.

Bannister, on the other hand, is showing no signs of improvement, allowing a total of 13 earned runs in just 9.2 innings over his last two starts. He was also hit hard in each of his last two starts vs. the White Sox, which both came last September, as he surrendered a total of 11 earned runs in only 5.2 total innings over two outings.

Finally, Vazquez figures to get more bullpen support if necessary, as the White Sox lead the American League and rank second in the majors with a 2.80 pen ERA, while the Royals rank ninth out of 14 American League teams at 4.00.

Pick: White Sox -125

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Terron Chapman

Minnesota Twins vs. Boston Red Sox
Play: Minnesota Twins 
 
The Minnesota Twins will try to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Boston Red Sox this afternoon in Fenway and will send veteran pitcher Livian Hernandez to the mound to assist in doing so.

Livian has struggled recently after a strong start to the season. Even still he is 9-5 on the season with the Twins going 13-6 in games he has started this year. His last two road starts have been horrendous to say the least, thus the high price tag attached to the Red Sox. But in our opinion Livian is certainly a servicable pitcher who already owns a win against the Red Sox this season. This will be his first start in Fenway however since 2006 when he was with the Nationals. If Livian can navigate his way through the early innings without too much damage as we expect, the Twins will have a good shot at avoiding the sweep.

But to do so they must score runs and that will not be easy as the Red Sox send Josh Beckett to the mound. Beckett and the Sox have dropped his last two home starts however, including a 10-6 loss to the O's as a -206 favorite. In his last start against the Twins he dropped the cash for his backers as a heavy -243 favorite last season against a Twins team who did not have the talent this one has. Beckett could struggle this afternoon against a Twins team hitting .327 against right handers the last 10 games. Out of his twelve home runs allowed on the season, seven of those have come in day games. This will be the first time the Twinkies have been tagged as a pup of +200 all season. In the same role last year they went 2-0.Play on the Minnesota Twins for 1 unit.

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Tony Karpinski

Atlanta Braves vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
Play: Under   

The two teams with the lowest runs allowed in the NL face off here on Wednesday. Both teams boast excellent starting pitching and tonight Tim Hudson will face Derek Lowe. Hudson hasn't done too well on the road, posting a 2-5 mark with 4.35 era. Lowe on the other hand has pitched very well at home, boasting a 3.26 era. The right handed sinker ball pitcher has a 4-1 KO/BB ratio at Chavez Ravine this year. Neither team is known for their hitting this year either, so we'll take the under here on Wednesday and look for a very good pitcher's duel. 

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John Ryan

Cincinnati Reds vs. Chicago Cubs
Play: Cincinnati Reds 

Ai Simulator 3* graded play on the Reds – Cubs bullpen is a bit weak of late sporting a 6.62 ERA and allowing 3 HR over the past 7 games. Reds bullpen arguably pitching their best of the season right now posting a 2.16 ERA and a 1.200 WHIP and recording 27 K’s over the past 7 games spanning 25 IP. Reds starter Cueto is pitching well posting a 1.96 ERA and a 1.091 WHIP over the past 3 starts. Moreover, he has allowed just 4 BB and recording 17 K’s in 18.3 IP. Zambrano is pitching steady consistent baseball, but he has allowed 9 BB in his last 3 starts spanning 19.7 IP. Reds are 50-37 (+19.5 Units) against the money line versus teams whose hitters draw 4 walks or more/game in the second half of the season since 1997. Cueto is a strong rookie starter and averages 7.8 strikeouts per 9 innings to rank among all National League pitching leaders. Ranks among all NL rookie pitching leaders in wins (7), strikeouts (91), starts (18) and innings pitched with 105. In these 105.0 innings has 91 strikeouts and 38 walks and according to Elias Sports Bureau, Cueto is the only pitcher since 1900 to record as many as 18 strikeouts without a walk in his first 2 career starts (threw 16.0 innings and recorded 22 strikeouts before issuing his first career walk, to Pit’s Nate McLouth on 4/13 in his third start.).

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Jeff Scott Sports

Tampa Bay +110 over NY YANKS

The Rays are 11-2 in their last 13 vs. a team with a winning record and 26-10 in their last 36 games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30, while the Yanks are 1-4 in their last 5 games as a favorite of -110 to -150. Edwin Jackson comes in off 3 solid outings as he 1-0 with a 2.57 ERA in his last 3 starts, allowing just a .262 OBP and posting a 1.00 WHIP in the 3 games. Edwin hasn't pitched that bad on the road, going 2-2 with a 4.07 ERA, plus he is 3-2 with a 3.68 ERA in his day starts. Edwin is also 2-2 with a 4.72 ERA in 6 career starts vs the Yanks, including a 1-1 mark with a 3.00 ERA in 3 starts vs them this year. Sidney Ponson is just 8-9 in his career vs the Rays with a 4.32 ERA, while in his lone start vs them this year he allowed 5 ER ojn 12 hits and 3 walks in just 5 innings of work. For the year Sidney has a solid 5-1 mark with a 4.18 ERA overall and even though he is 2-1 in his last 5 starts the ERA is pretty high at 6.00, while he has allowed teams a .444 OBP to go along with his 2.13 WHIP. That's mainly due to the run support the Yanks and Rangers have been giving him, but I'm not expecting big run support today as the Yanks offense has been sputtering of late. In the last 10 games only once has the Yanks offense shown up and that was the 18 run outburst vs the Rangers in Sidney's last start. Now if you take out that game then the Yanks offense has put just 2.6 rpg in the other 9 games. Even with the 18 runs the Yanks are scoring just 4.1 rpg and hitting only .225. Despite being shutout last night, the Tampa offense still has put 6.1 rpg on the board in their last 14 games and the score 5.2 rpg on the road for the year, including 6.2 rpg in their last 13 away from home. This is an important game for the Rays, as they do not want to get swept here by the Yanks, so look for their offense to hit Ponson hard, while Edwin keep the anemic Yankee offense at bay. Tampa gets the win easily.


BOSTON/ Minnesota Over 9

The Over is 12-4 in Hernandezs last 16 starts overall and 11-3 in his last 14 starts as an underdog, while the Over is 20-9-1 in Becketts last 30 home starts with the total set at 9.0-10.5 and 4-1 in his last 5 starts as a home favorite of -201 or greater, plus the Over is 17-7 in Barrys last 24 games behind home plate. Boston has been of home fav of -201 or higher 6 times this year and those 6 games have averaged 12.7 rpg, including 17 rpg in Beckett's 2 starts as a home fav that high. For the year has an ERA of 3.70 with his overall starts averaging 8.8 rpg, while he has a 4.72 ERA at home with those starts putting up 11 rpg. Josh also has a 3.97 ERA in day games, with those games averaging right at totals total of 9. Livan Hernandez comes in with a 5.18 ERA overall, with those games averaging 10.2 rpg, including a 7.00 ERA on the road, with those games averaging 10.9 rpg. Livan has also struggled in his 4 day starts, posting a 6.95 ERA, with those games averaging 10.8 rpg. Livan must now face a Boston offense that may be struggling at the momemnt, but one that still score 5.6 rpg and hits .290 at home. Boston also scores 6.5 rpg for Josh at home and 5.1 rpg in his day starts. The Twins offense has not been struggling of late as they come in avaerging 6.1 rpg and hitting .325 in their last 7. For the year the Twins put up 4.7 rpg on the road and 5.1 rpg vs righty starters, plus they score 5.5 rpg for Livan in his overall starts. Boston's home games average 9.3 rpg, while the Twins road games average 10.1 rpg. All im looking for is a least 4 runs from the Twins and with Boston allowing 4.5 rpg in his home starts and the Twins scoring 4.8 rpg in Livan's road starts, I say that 4 runs is clearly attainable. On the flipside I feel that with the way Livan struggles on the road, plus the fact that they allow 6.1 rpg in his road starts, I see Boston being able to get no less than 6 runs. Should be an easy OVER here.   

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Wunderdog

Chicago White Sox at Kansas City
Pick: Chicago White Sox -127

Brian Bannister gave the Royals a big lift last year finishing 12-9 with a 3.87 ERA on a bad team. This season he looked even more impressive to start as he held a 0.86 ERA through his first three starts and then the bottom fell out. Bannister has pitched to a 6.18 ERA since, and has allowed five or more earned runs in over half his starts since then. Consequently, the Royals have been 5-10 in those 15 starts. Javier Vasquez has pitched rather consistently all year having allowed six hits or less in 10 of his 18 starts. The White Sox have been on a tear, winners of 10 of their last 12. We like the matchup in this one to ride the Chi-Sox on the road in Kansas City.

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Stephen Nover

Minnesota Twins @ Boston Red Sox
PICK: Minnesota Twins

Unlike other teams, the Minnesota Twins usually don't beat themselves. They have an outstanding manager, Ron Gardenhire, know how to manufacture runs and have one of the best closers, Joe Nathan.

At this high price, the Twins are worth a shot. Boston has beaten Minnesota by one run in each of the first two games in this series. Still, the Twins have won 19 of their last 26 ames.

Reflective of the price is Boston's dominance at Fenway Park and a starting pitching matchup of Livan Hernandez versus Josh Beckett.

Hernandez doesn't have good-looking statistics, but the Twins are 13-6 in his starts this season. Hernandez has turned in 10 quality starts. His location has been better lately.

The Red Sox are without slugger David Ortiz (wrist) and outfielder J.D. Drew isn't in the starting lineup today because of a sore back. The Red Sox also probably won't be able to use closer Jonathan Papelbon. He's pitched in each of the past three days and in four of the last five days. 

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Jeff Alexander Sports

1 Unit  on LA Angels -139

The Angels have been one of the safest bets in baseball in the road chalk role and we'll back them in this spot tonight at a decent price.  The Angels are 8-2 in their last 10 vs. a team with a winning record, 10-3 in their last 13 games as a road favorite of -110 to -150, and 12-5 in their last 17 road games.  The Halos have also shelled lefties and we have uncovered some solid numbers to support them against lefty starters as well.  The Angels are 16-5 in their last 21 games vs. a left-handed starter.  LA is 7-3 in Weaver's last 10 starts and they have to be smelling another win tonight.

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DREW GORDON

Houston -120 at PITTSBURGH 

Astros are desperate for a win, and their prayers may have been answered with their most favorable pitching match up of the series tonight in Pittsburgh. I'll be the first admit Brian Moehler last start, at Atlanta, was ugly. But, when you consider his 3 starts prior to that loss were rock-solid (allowing 1 run apiece in each), let's not get too caught up in one bad start

While Moehler's numbers won't blow anybody away, when compared to John Van Benschoten, he's the man! Tell me, what has Benschoten ever done to make you believe he can get it done at this level? He has the distinction of having the worst ERA in Major League history (9.04) of pitchers with over 75 innings of work! In his last start this season, at Cincinnati, he got rocked for 5 runs in just 2 1/3 innings... Need I say more?!

As a final note, you know the 'Stros will be fighting hard to avoid the sweep here, and with Benschoten on the mound, they smell blood in the water! Houston preferes hitting lefties, but in the case of Benschoten, it doesn't matter as he serves up meatball after meatball. In the end, look for the 'Stros offense to get back on track tonight, while Moehler takes care of business in this one.

Take Houston behind Moehler over Pittsburgh and Van Benschoten in this MLB match up.

3♦ HOUSTON

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Re: WEDNESDAY SERVICE PLAYS

Pupsnchalk Sports

Minnesota Twins vs. Boston Red Sox
Play: Minnesota Twins 

The Minnesota Twins will try to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Boston Red Sox this afternoon in Fenway and will send veteran pitcher Livian Hernandez to the mound to assist in doing so.

Livian has struggled recently after a strong start to the season. Even still he is 9-5 on the season with the Twins going 13-6 in games he has started this year. His last two road starts have been horrendous to say the least, thus the high price tag attached to the Red Sox. But in our opinion Livian is certainly a servicable pitcher who already owns a win against the Red Sox this season. This will be his first start in Fenway however since 2006 when he was with the Nationals. If Livian can navigate his way through the early innings without too much damage as we expect, the Twins will have a good shot at avoiding the sweep.

But to do so they must score runs and that will not be easy as the Red Sox send Josh Beckett to the mound. Beckett and the Sox have dropped his last two home starts however, including a 10-6 loss to the O's as a -206 favorite. In his last start against the Twins he dropped the cash for his backers as a heavy -243 favorite last season against a Twins team who did not have the talent this one has. Beckett could struggle this afternoon against a Twins team hitting .327 against right handers the last 10 games. Out of his twelve home runs allowed on the season, seven of those have come in day games. This will be the first time the Twinkies have been tagged as a pup of +200 all season. In the same role last year they went 2-0.Play on the Minnesota Twins for 1 unit.

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