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Friday Service Plays

Re: Friday Service Plays

LT Profits

Cleveland Indians +150

The Cleveland Indians have won the last seven straight head-to-head meetings with the Detroit Tigers including a three-game sweep here in Detroit, and at this nice price, they are worth an investment to keep that streak going.

The Indians have been rather erratic at 8-14 so far, but they have not had trouble scoring runs, averaging 5.32 runs per game. This is virtually identical to the Tigers average of 5.33 runs per contest.

Sure, it is a bit of a concern have Carl Pavano on the mound, but he did suddenly toss a gem two starts back, limiting the mighty Yankees to just one run and four hits in six innings, and if he continues his current pattern of alternating good and bad starts, he is in line for a good one today. Plus, the fact that the Tigers have never faced Pavano before should work to his advantage.

Now we are big fans of Detroit starter Armando Galarraga, and he is certainly off to a great start at 3-0 with a 1.85 ERA, 1.23 WHIP and 24 strikeouts in 24.1 innings. However, the Indians were one of the few teams to get to him last season, as he lost his last two starts against Cleveland while allowing six earned runs and a rather alarming four home runs in 14.2 innings.

If the Tribe can continue that power surge against Galarraga and get into a Detroit bullpen that has a poor 5.17 ERA, they can easily pull off the upset at a price tonight.

Pick: Indians +150

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Dennis Macklin

Colorado Rockies at San Francisco Giants
Prediction: San Francisco Giants

Randy Johnson is still four wins away from that magical 300 and looks to make that three against a Colorado team he handled with ease last year. The Big Unit is just 1-2 with a 6.16 ERA but he's been rock solid at home (3.00) and beat the Rockies all three starts in 2008. Ubaldo Jiminez is 0-3 with 12.00 ERA and can't seem to find the plate walking 17 (just 16 hits) in 19 innings change. Take the Giants.

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Jimmy Boyd

1 Unit on White Sox/Rangers UNDER 11

The Rangers have now played to the Under in 6 of their last 7 and I like this Unders trend to continue tonight as they face White Sox ace Mark Buehrle. Buehrle is 3-0 on the season with a 3.00 ERA and he has had the Rangers' number in his career, going 10-3 when starting with an ERA of 2.63 and a WHIP of 1.024. Right off, you have to like the Under here since plays Under on all teams where the total is 11 or higher in May games are 66-22 the last 5 seasons. The Under is 6-2-1 in the last 9 meetings between these teams in Texas. Bet the Under.

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Jrtips

CHI-WHITE SOX vs. TEXAS RANGERS

The Chicago White Sox are banged up and they aren't scoring many runs as a result. Tonight, they will face the high-scoring Texas Rangers at their hitter-friendly Rangers Ballpark. Chicago (11-10) took two of three from Seattle at home to start the week, winning 6-3 on Wednesday when Carlos Quentin and Jermaine Dye hit back-to-back home runs in the seventh to break a 3-3 tie. Both were hitting for only a combined .152 (5-for-33) in their previous five games. After scoring 10 runs against Toronto on Saturday, Chicago scored only six runs over the next three games. Injuries have played a part in the lack of runs scored as designated hitter Jim Thome has been out since Sunday and may be placed on the disabled list, while center fielder Brian Anderson suffered a mild oblique strain Wednesday and Chris Getz, who's hitting .340 hasn't played since last Friday.The Rangers (10-11) began the week second in the AL in runs with 110 split the series with Oakland this week, losing Thursday 4-2.Texas stranded 12 and was 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position.The Rangers will likely be without outfielder Josh Hamilton, who's hitting .242 with two homers and 10 RBIs in 18 games, this weekend. After struggling offensively in their last game, the Rangers will try to get back on track against Mark Buehrle (3-0, 3.00 ERA), who's had success against Texas.The left-hander is 10-3 with a 2.84 ERA in 13 starts and three relief appearances versus the Rangers. Chicago has won all four of his starts and scored 17 runs in his last two outings. Scott Feldman (1-0, 7.71) will start for the Rangers. Feldman pitched five innings at Baltimore on Saturday, giving up one run and four hits to earn a 6-5 victory. The right-hander is 1-1 with a 3.72 ERA in one start and five relief appearances against the White Sox. Both these teams have had injuries that have slowed down their scoring production. Mark Buehrle has pitched well against Texas and the White sox have been struggling to score of late due to injuries. 11 runs is too much for these two teams tonight even in this hitting friendly ballpark.

TAKE UNDER 11 RUNS

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Scott Delaney

Don’t look now, but the Yankees have won three straight and appear to have found the offense that was absent for much of the first month of the season. In winning the last two games of their series in Detroit, the Bronx Bombers outscored the Tigers 19-6. Last night they opened this four-game set with a 7-4 effort, and going back eight games this team has tallied 53 runs – and average of 6.6 runs per game. Though the Halos came into this series on a three-game win streak, this team is still 9-13 on the year and won’t be able to match up against the Yanks right now.

We’re banking on the momentum the Yanks bring into this series, and won’t list any pitchers tonight, but I can tell you that I’m pretty comfortable with Andy Pettitte on the hill for us. The southpaw hurler is 2-1 on the year with a 2.96 ERA, and he’s in double revenge against the Halos after he went 0-2 with a 7.94 ERA in his three starts against them last season.

Pettitte has been the Yankees’ most consistent starter this season, as he’s thrown at least six innings and allowed no more than three earned runs in each of his first four starts. And for the record, since Jered Weaver struggled last year against New York, going 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA, it gives me even more confidence with the pinstripes.

N.Y. YANKEES RUN LINE

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Matt Rivers

For Friday lay a run and a half with the Blue Jays.

I hate to sound like a square and I feel like one with this play but I just do not see this game being close. The pitching matchup is as night and day as any we have seen in awhile. Roy Halladay is an absolute beast and on the opposite extreme we have a guy in Mark Hendrickson who right now is not pitching very well at all and frankly is at the very very very best mediocre and that is being somewhat kind.

The Orioles tall lefty has an ERA in the 5's and just got bombed for 5 runs and 8 hits against Texas. I just don't see any improvement today against a Toronto team that has been playing some solid and overachieving ball and boasts some quality righty bats in Vernon Wells, Aaron Hill, Alex Rios and a few others. Toronto was expected to be a .500 team at the very best but has jumped out of the gate in fine fashion and should take care of business today going away being their horse and Cy Young candidate in Halladay.

Baltimore is a club that is not terrible as a big dog because they do have an upside with pretty good players like Brian Roberts, Nick Markakis, Melvin Mora, Luke Scott and a few others but it is just asking a bit too much of them today up North with such a disadvantage on the bump.

I just don't see anything other than something like an 8-3 final!

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Re: Friday Service Plays

JACK JONES

Seattle Mariners -103 over Oakland A's

Carlos Silva isn't a top pitcher by any means, but he has done well against the Oakland A's.  Silva is 2-2 with a 2.73 ERA in five starts, plus he's throwing better than A's starter Dana Eveland is.  Eveland has given up 29 hits and 12 walks in his last 19.7 innings, and while that has only translated into 13 runs you have to think letting that many people reach base will catch up to you sooner or later.  Seattle is hitting .291 over their last seven games and .282 against left-handed starters.  Oakland on the other hand is hitting just .237 ont he year which means I'll gladly take the home team tonight.

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Wunderdog

Florida at Chicago Cubs
Pick: Chicago Cubs -1.5

The Marlins have the smallest payroll in MLB, but started the season like a team with the highest, as they jumped out of the gate with a 10-1 mark, but have been just 3-7 since. While the Marlins have assembled a respectable staff and rotation, Graham Taylor hasn't earned the right to be in that conversation. Taylor made his debut Sunday night against the Phillies, and didn't stick around long. He managed just 3.2 innings, but what stands out is his six walks. The Cubs are going with Rich Harden. Harden came over from the A's and pitched to a 10-2 record with a 2.07 ERA. When healthy, he is amongst the top pitchers in baseball. The Cubs outscored the opponents 70-39 in those 12 games. This season, Harden has already recorded 35 strikeouts in just 21 innings. The Marlins are struggling, as well as their pitcher in today's game, so I'm going with the Cubs on the runline.

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The Prez

St. Louis Cardinals @ Washington Nationals
PICK: St. Louis Cardinals

The Nationals' decision to bring up Jordan Zimmermann from Triple-A is shaping up as the one of their better April decisions. However, tonight Zimmermann faces Albert Pujols and the formidable Cardinals lineup in his third big league start.

Zimmermann out pitch is his curveball, and the rookies success in his first two starts is directly related to how the first two opposing lineups fare against the breaking ball. Atlanta's offense is soft, even more so with injuries (Chipper Jones and Brian McCann) to the middle of the lineup The 22-year-old Zimmermann (2-0) beat Atlanta 3-2 in his major league debut and then took on an inconsistent Mets lineup. Zimmerman mixed a 95 mph fastball with his off-speed pitches and struck out slumping David Wright three times and allowed one run with six hits in 5 1/3 innings. But there were signs that Zimmerman will struggle against a batting order on their game, like tonight's matchup against the Cards. The potent Cardinals lineup isn't a favorable matchup for the Washington right-hander. The rookie's curveball won't faze Tony LaRusa's lineup. Of the 10 swings against Zimmerman's curve ball, in his first two starts, only one hitter has actually put the ball in play, and six swings have missed bats completely. No one has a hit against it yet. The Cardinals hit the curveball well over 50 percent of St Louis' hits this year have come via off-speed or breaking balls. Additionally, the Cardinals lineup don't swing on 55 percent of curveballs in the strike zone, which is considerably higher than the league norm. In effect, they have a good chance to neutralize Zimmermann's best pitch.

Todd Wellemeyer has stifled the Nationals offense during his career. In fact, of all National League teams, Wellemeyer has had more success against the Nats than any other lineup. Ronnie Belliard, Alex Cintron, Elijah Dukes, Adam Dunn, Jesus Flores, Cristian Guzman, Willie Harris, Nick Johnson, Austin Kearns, Josh Willingham and Ryan Zimmerman are a combined 7-for-40 (.175) against Wellemeyer with two extra base hits in those 40 at-bats. In the right-handers last start against the Cubs he was rather unlucky with most of Chicago's hits being grounders that found holes. And Wellemeyer was pitching on unusually long rest (seven days) due to a rainout. Now he goes on his usual five days. The fact Wellemeyer seemed to get stronger in the later innings of that start, striking out four of the final five hitters he faced offers strong evidence he will handle a Nats lineup that has had little success against him in the past. The Nationals also fall into a category that Wellemeyer thrives against, teams that swing and miss. Only two teams in the Majors have struck out more than the Nats (172), that being Cleveland (178) and Florida (173).

Last year, in his first season as a full-time starter and first full season with the Cards since coming over from Kansas City, Wellemeyer was one of the breakthrough players going 13-9 with a 3.71 ERA in 32 starts. He limited hitters to a .245 average over 191 2/3 innings, striking out 134. Note that his best month of 2008 came in May, going 4-0 with a 2.19 ERA in 37 innings and earning National League Pitcher of the Month honors over those six starts.

Wellemeyer’s strike out totals always make him intriguing -- 2005/2006/2007 K/9 of 8.9/6.2/6.8 -- and his questionable command of BB/9 of 6.1/5.7/4.5 -- improves by nearly two walks per nine innings against teams that have a propensity to swing and miss. In 2008 a dramatic increase in his control, 2.9 BB/9 while maintaining his K Rate 6.3 led to a breakout season, 13-9 with a 3.71 ERA. He is off to a slow start this year but his last start, despite losing to Chicago showed signs that Wellemeyer is ready to return to his 2008 form.

Homeplate umpire Tim Welke is consistent with his calls, and this helps a patient Cardinals offense, especially facing a rookie pitcher. Additionally, Welke isn't a homer, visiting teams are 8-0 in Welke's last 8 games behind home plate and the Nationals are 1-6 in their last 7 games when Welke is grading balls and strikes.

The Cardinals have feasted on right-handed pitching this season, hitting .312, so tonight's third start for rookie Jordan Zimmerman will be his toughest test to date. The Washington rookie lasted only 5 1/3 innings his last start, throwing 103 pitches, and backing a Nationals offense that has a questionable history against St Louis starter Todd Wellemeyer isn't favorable. Playing against a rookie pitcher, Washington's questionable offense against veteran Wellemeyer, and the Nats leaky bullpen as chalk offers substantial value.

5 UNIT Play on the Cardinals

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Re: Friday Service Plays

GREG SHAKER

Colorado Rockies at San Francisco Giants
Play: Giants -117

The Big Unit is a Big Ole Unit and not as effective as he used to be. He does have some good games left in him though and he has a good chance of doing just that against the Rocky Team who is not a good road proposition and has not hit lefties well on the road this year. Jimenez is a very good pitcher but he is having serious control issues right now, already putting 17 on base via the free pass and it is more than just about doing that. He is not spotting his throws very effectively and that means his K numbers are not very good this year and that also means that he is not getting the ground balls that make him as good as he is when he is. The Giants Run Production is up over the last few contests, they have been getting much better work out of their Pen, and they are winning games at this park. The Colorado Thrower is going to have to show me tonight that he has found his groove, but I suspect that he is going to be grooved. This is a pretty nice betting number and I will get it.

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Re: Friday Service Plays

Free Selection from Totals4U
Friday's free selection: Kansas City/Minnesota over 9 runs

==============================================

Free Selection from Arthur Ralph Sports
254 - 169 run  60 %

Friday SD Padres

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EZWINNER'S FREE SELECTION


(973) Boston Red Sox -$120


(Listing  Masterson and Sonnanstine)


2009 Free Selections Record  64-54  (54.2%)

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VEGAS EXPERTS

Chicago White Sox at Texas Rangers

The Rangers have played very well at home against the White Sox winning five of six over the past two seasons. The Rangers are averaging 7.1 runs per game at home this season and have been even better against lefties teeing off for eight runs a game. Rangers’ Scott Feldman has one career start against the Sox and he did well going six innings and allowing just one earned run. Take the Rangers at home.

Play on: Texas

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