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Picks and Predictions For Wednesday September 10

Picks and Predictions For Wednesday September 10

Baseball continues to rumble towards the playoffs with more regular season action on the Wednesday scoreboard. Our team of writers and handicappers hands out their picks for Wednesday.

Toronto Blue Jays (78-66) at Chicago White Sox (80-64)

While the Toronto Blue Jays' longest winning streak in 10 years has them thinking about a possible playoff run, the AL Central-leading Chicago White Sox are feeling the pressure.

The White Sox and Blue Jays continue a four-game series on Wednesday, as Chicago faces the daunting task of facing Toronto ace Roy Halladay after a difficult day.

The White Sox (80-64) were swept by Toronto (78-66) in a day-night doubleheader at home on Tuesday, 3-1 and 8-2. Their lead in the AL Central was cut to one game over Minnesota.

The White Sox will start Mark Buehrle (12-11, 3.98) opposite Halladay.

Buehrle has won four of his last five decisions. He pitched six scoreless innings Friday against the Angels, allowing three hits while striking out seven in a 10-2 win.

The left-hander improved to 9-3 with a 2.85 ERA in 15 home starts. He's won his last six decisions at home, where Chicago has won his last seven starts.

Buehrle is 3-3 with a 2.79 ERA in 10 starts and one relief appearance against the Blue Jays. He pitched a five-hitter and did not allow an earned run against them on May 2 in Toronto, but suffered a 2-0 defeat.

Pick: Chicago - line +125 SBG Global

Tampa Bay Rays (86-57) at Boston Red Sox (85-59)

The Tampa Bay Rays can take comfort in knowing they will leave Boston as the leaders in the AL East.

How much of an advantage could depend on how well they fare against Boston's Josh Beckett as the division front-runners meet in the deciding game of their three-game set Wednesday night at Fenway Park.

After blowing a one-run lead in the eighth inning, Tampa Bay (86-57) scored twice in the ninth off Boston closer Jonathan Papelbon to even the key series with a 5-4 victory Tuesday night. The win increased the Rays' lead in the East back to 1 1/2 games after the Red Sox (85-59) got within one-half of the lead with a 3-0 win Monday.

Beckett (12-9, 4.20 ERA) allowed four hits while striking out seven in five scoreless innings of an 8-1 victory at Texas on Friday in his first start since Aug. 17 prior to landing on the disabled list with right elbow inflammation.

The right-hander is 2-1 with a 2.57 ERA versus Tampa Bay this season, with both wins coming at Fenway. He is 5-3 with a 3.59 ERA lifetime against the Rays.

Pick: Tampa Bay - Best line +180 SBG Global

Los Angeles Dodgers (74-71) at San Diego Padres (56-89)

Andre Ethier's recent performance at the plate and Derek Lowe's work on the mound are key reasons the Los Angeles Dodgers are in first place in the NL West.

The Dodgers hope both players can continue to help them as they face the host San Diego Padres looking to win their fourth consecutive series Wednesday night.

After having their eight-game winning streak snapped with a 4-0 loss at San Diego on Monday, Los Angeles (74-71) bounced back with a 6-2 victory Tuesday. The latest result increased the Dodgers' lead in the West to a season-high 2 1/2 games over Arizona, which fell at San Francisco earlier in the night for its fifth loss in a row.

The last-place Padres (56-89) had won two in a row before Tuesday's loss eliminated them from postseason contention. San Diego won the weak NL West in 2005 and 2006, then fell one victory short of the postseason last year.

Brian Giles had two hits and Kevin Kouzmanoff singled while driving in his fifth run in three games. Kouzmanoff is 6-for-20 with seven RBIs in five games against the Dodgers this month.

San Diego's Shawn Estes (2-1, 2.97) looks to follow up a strong outing in his second start since coming off the disabled list from a broken thumb. He allowed one run and seven hits in six innings to win 5-2 at Milwaukee on Thursday in his first action since May 28.

Pick: LA Dodgers - Best line -165 SBG Global … ptemb.html

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