Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday October, 11

Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday October, 11

DUNKEL INDEX

Pittsburgh at Tennessee
The Steelers look to take advantage of a Tennessee team that is coming off a 30-7 loss to Minnesota last weekend and is 1-7-1 ATS in its last 9 games following a SU loss of more than 14 points. Pittsburgh is the pick (-5 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Steelers favored by 7 1/2. Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (-5 1/2)

Game 101-102: Pittsburgh at Tennessee (8:20 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Pittsburgh 132.289; Tennessee 124.886
Dunkel Line: Pittsburgh by 7 1/2; 40
Vegas Line: Pittsburgh by 5 1/2; 43
Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (-5 1/2); Under

NCAAF

Arizona State at Colorado
The Sun Devils look to take advantage of a Colorado team that is 2-8 ATS in its last 10 games against a team with a winning record. Arizona State is the pick (-22 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Sun Devils favored by 24 1/2. Dunkel Pick: Arizona State (-22 1/2)

Game 103-104: Arizona State at Colorado (9:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Arizona State 94.458; Colorado 72.725
Dunkel Line: Arizona State by 24 1/2; 54
Vegas Line: Arizona State by 22 1/2; 57
Dunkel Pick: Arizona State (-22 1/2); Under

Game 105-106: UTEP at Tulsa (8:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: UTEP 76.624; Tulsa 95.504
Dunkel Line: Tulsa by 19; 63
Vegas Line: Tulsa by 17; 58
Dunkel Pick: Tulsa (-17); Over

Game 107-108: Western Kentucky at Troy (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Western Kentucky 78.753; Troy 81.494
Dunkel Line: Troy by 2 1/2; 52
Vegas Line: Western Kentucky by 2 1/2; 54 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Troy (+2 1/2); Under

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MLB

Detroit at Oakland
The A's look to take advantage of a Detroit team that is 0-6 ATS in Justin Verlander's last 6 starts as a favorite of -110 to -150. Oakland is the pick (+120) according to Dunkel, which has the A's favored by 1/2 a run. Dunkel Pick: Oakland (+120)

Game 933-934: San Francisco at Cincinnati (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Francisco (Cain) 15.061; Cincinnati (Latos) 16.018
Dunkel Line: Cincinnati by 1; 6
Vegas Line: Cincinnati (-120); 7
Dunkel Pick: Cincinnati (-120); Under

Game 935-936: St. Louis at Washington (4:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: St. Louis (Lohse) 17.126; Washington (Detwiler) 15.522
Dunkel Line: St. Louis by 2; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: Washington (-110); 8
Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (-110); Over

Game 937-938: Baltimore at NY Yankees (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Baltimore (Saunders) 16.822; NY Yankees (Hughes) 15.613
Dunkel Line: Baltimore by 1; 8
Vegas Line: NY Yankees (-145); 8 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Baltimore (+125); Under

Game 939-940: Detroit at Oakland (9:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Detroit (Verlander) 15.715; Oakland (Parker) 16.478
Dunkel Line: Oakland by 1/2; 7 1/2
Vegas Line: Detroit (-140); 6 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Oakland (+120); Over

WNBA

Indiana at Connecticut
The Sun look to take advantage of an Indiana team that is 4-10 ATS in its last 14 games in Connecticut. Connecticut is the pick (-4 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Sun favored by 7 1/2. Dunkel Pick: Connecticut (-4 1/2)

Game 611-612: Indiana at Connecticut (8:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Indiana 113.999; Connecticut 121.288
Dunkel Line & Total: Connecticut by 7 1/2; 143
Vegas Line & Total: Connecticut by 4 1/2; 147 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Connecticut (-4 1/2); Under

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Arizona State vs. Colorado    
Play: Arizona State
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The Sun Devils should be able to name the score in this one. They have a solid offense that averages 456 yards which 115 yards better than Colorado. Even better is the edge on defense they have. Arizona St allows just 276 yards compared to 474 for Colorado. ASU has covered the last 2 times as a favorite in this range. Colorado is 1-9 ats in weeks 5-9 and 3-12 straight up and to the spread vs Winning teams. This team actually lost to Sacramento St here earlier in the year. Look for Arizona St to win and cover.

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Detroit Tigers vs Oakland Athletics
Pick: Oakland Athletics
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Justin Verlander is about as good as it gets, but winning at baseball is all about value. Bad road team laying 7/5 against what amounts to a cash dispenser at home. At this price, the A's are the only way I can play.

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Western Kentucky vs Troy
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Western Kentucky has a balanced offense, a terrific backfield and a veteran QB in Kawaun Jakes (8 TDs,3 INTs). Troy has a weak spot on the defensive line, which can be pushed around. They lost to Louisiana-Lafayette allowing 218 yards rushing, and this Western Kentucky ground attack is outstanding behind Antonio Andrews and Leon Allen, both averaging over 6 yards per carry. The over is 9-4 in the Hilltoppers last 13 games in October, while the over is 10-4 in the Troy Trojans last 14 vs. a team with a winning record. Play Western Kentucky/Troy over the total.

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Steelers at Titans
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When the Steelers travel to the Music CIty to meet the Titans Thursday night Pittsburgh will do so knowing they've played UNDER the total in 11 of their last 16 games on Thursdays, including 4 of the last 5 when facing a foe off a loss. With the Steelers having held all four opponents to season low - or 2nd low - yardage this season, look for a low scoring affair here tonight. We recommend a 1-unit play on the UNDER in this game.

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Steelers at Titans
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The Steelers came off their BYE week and needed to get a win over state-rival Philadelphia and did so winning on a last minute field goal 16-14. The game went UNDER and the Steelers failed to cover the spread installed as 3 ? point favorites. Tennessee is a struggling team and were blown out by Minnesota 30-7 failing to cover as six point dogs and with the game playing UNDER 44 points.
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The Steelers have alternated OVER-UNDER games through four games this season. The Titans have posted a 3-2 OVER mark. The Titans played UNDER in Week 1 in a 34-13 blowout loss home versus New England, then posted three straight OVERS. In those three games they gave up a ton of points losing 38-10 at San Diego, defeating Detroit 44-41, and then losing 38-14 at Houston. Granted, their schedule has been brutal and does not get any easier till Week 16 when they host Jacksonville.
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The Tennessee ground game has been the greatest disappointment on this team. Without a sustained and reliable ground game the offense does not have the athletes at the skill positions to execute vertical pass routes and stretch opposing defenses.
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The Steelers offense has scored well in their first three games, but had trouble against a stout Philadelphia Eagles defense last week. However, they posted a season-high 136 rushing yards on 31 carries and Roethlisberger threw for 207 passing yards on 21-for-37 passing. They have gained more offensive yards than their opponents in three of the four games played. The lone exception was the Week 1 31-19 loss loss at Denver.
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The Steelers rank 16th averaging 23.2 points per game while Tennessee ranks 17th averaging just 17.6 points per game. Looking at scoring margin, the Steelers rank 13th posting a 1.0 points per game differential while Tennessee is a distant and league-worst -18.6 points per game.
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Yards-per-point is a stat that I believe has strong meaning in reflecting how well an offense and defense are executing. The Steelers rank 18th posting a 15.0 yards-per-point ratio while Tennessee is 25th with a 17.3 ratio. Teams that have offenses that need 14.0 or fewer yards to score one point are operating at an elite level. Temas between 15 and 17.9 are average offenses, and teams needing greater than 18.0 yards to score one point on average are struggling units prone to mistakes, penalties, and turnovers.
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Defensively, the Steelers rank 16th in the NFL allowing 22.2 points per game while Tennessee ranks a league-worst 32nd allowing a whopping 36.2 points per game. Based on yards-per-point, the Steelers ranks a miserable 12.6 ratio and Tennessee 30th with a 11.7 ratio. This clearly shows that both teams have allowed big plays and whose offenses have had turnovers allowing opponents to have short fields to post scoring drives.
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This matchup takes on the same look as the Monday Night between the Texans and Jets., which went UNDER by just a ? point. The point is that Texas showed up with a very conservative offensive scheme designed to minimize mistakes and turnovers and to establish the ground attack. The same can be said for the visiting Steelers, who are vastly better than the Titans, know they can establish the ground game, and will implement a low risk offensive scheme.
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In the Monday Night win, the Texans had an rushing differential of greater than 100 yards midway through the second quarter. The Steelers, I believe will look to do the same and shorten the game and gain as much time-of-possession as possible. That is a certain gameplan to win this game and it certainly portends to the game playing exceedingly UNDER the posted total.

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Tulsa/ Utep Over 57.5: This has been an extremely high scoring series off late as these teams have combined for 76.4 ppg in their last 9 meetings, while the last 4 meetings here has produced 70.8 ppg. Now in years past the Miners did have solid offenses, but this year they have struggled, averaging just 17 ppg. I feel that after getting shutout last week they will find a way to put some points on the board vs this weak Tulsa defense. The Golden Hurricane has allowed 28.3 ppg on the year, but they are really struggling in their last 3 games, allowing 35.3 ppg over that stretch. Tulsa is 5-1 on the year but as you see it is not because of the defense, but more because of an offense that has averaged   459.7 ypg and 42.5 ppg, while at home they have put up 523.7 ypg and 46 ppg. This powerful Tulsa offense will take on a pretty weak UTEP defense that comes in allowing 440.7 ypg and 27 ppg overall, including 490.7 ypg and 31 ppg on the road this year. Im not sure if UTEP will really keep this one close, but I do see them get at least 21 points in this one, while Tulsa should be good for at least 40 points of their own. 
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Western Kentucky -2 over TROY: WKU is playing very well on both sides of the ball right now as they come in averaging 29.8 ppg, while they come in having allowed just 30 points in their last 2 games. WKU has played a tough schedule so far facing 2 SUC teams on the road and they win one of them (Kentucky in OT). The Hilltoppers came home and demolished a Southern Miss team by 25, before going on the road and beating Arkansas State by 13. Troy did face Miss State at home, but other than than they haven’t really faced anyone. In their last 2 games they faced weak South Alabama and North Texas on the road, but they nearly beat North Texas and were outgained in that game, plus at home earlier they lost to UL Lafayette and in their opener barley beat a very weak UAB team on the road. WKU has played better vs stronger completion, and while Troy is at home and playing with revenge I still feel that this Hilltopper squad is for real and may be the 2nd best team (behind UL-Monroe) in the Sun Belt. Look for the Hilltoppers to take this one.

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TENNESSEE +6 -104 over Pittsburgh
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Avoiding Tennessee would be an easy case to make.  After all, the Titans have only one freak win over the 1-3 Lions compared to four losses where they allowed 30 points or more in each game. However, these singular featured games get so much action that the oddsmakers have to be especially sharp with their numbers in order to prevent the house from getting whacked. Thursday night favorites have been particularly damaging to chalk players with only one cover (Green Bay over Chicago) in four weeks thus far. Without a lot of time for game planning, these games on a short week have been rather conservative affairs, which bodes well for the doggie.  Pittsburgh doesn’t travel well at the best of times. Steelers are winless on the road in two tries and they have another prime timer next week in Cincinnati. This is a weak situational spot to be giving away road points. No units risked.
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TROY +2 -105 over Western Kentucky
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The Hilltoppers are ranked 25th in the nation in rushing, they’re averaging nearly 30 points a game and they’re ranked 39th overall in points allowed. WKU is 11-2 over the past calendar year with their only two losses coming to Alabama and LSU, both of whom were ranked No. 1 at the time the game was played. They have also won eight straight games against conference opponents, including a 41-18 win over these same Trojans last season. We point out their impressive numbers only to establish how this line is skewed. When playing a powder puff schedule, these types of stats are common and that’s the case here. The Hilltoppers schedule has been a very soft one. That works to our advantage as WKU is a one-dimensional offense that runs the ball often but rarely passes. WKU’s skewed defensive numbers are a result of them successfully pounding the ball on the ground against weak opposition and eating clock. The defense is spending less time on the field than most.
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Troy is undervalued here. They’re a quality Sun Belt team that averages close to 500 yards of offense per game. The Trojans are 3-2 on the year but all three wins have come on the road, which confirms just how tough they can be. Looking for its first home win, the Trojans are 8-1 against the number in their past nine games after a bye and we’ll gladly play them here against a truly overhyped intruder.

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MLB Predictions

Oakland Athletics +128

The Tigers are favored here with their ace on the mound, but I think we are getting great value on the home team behind a solid starting pitcher. The Athletics send Jarrod Parker back to the mound for the 5th and deciding game. Parker was 13-8 this year with a 3.47 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, and .248 opponents batting average. At home he was 6-5 with a 2.61 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, and .240 opponents batting average. He started in Game 1 going 6.1 innings allowing 7 hits and 2 earned runs against while striking out 5 and walking 1. He also faced Detroit back in May in Oakland where he went 5.2 innings giving up 2 earned runs. On the mound for Detroit is of course Justin Verlander who is 17-8 this year with a 2.64 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, and .217 opponents batting average. On the road his numbers were slightly worse than Parker's home numbers, as he was 8-6 with a 3.57 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, and .243 opponents batting average. He has faced Oakland three times this season allowing just 2 earned runs against over 21 innings, including Game 1 where he allowed just 3 hits and 1 earned run over 7 innings. There is no doubt that we can expect a quality start from Verlander, but I expect Parker to be able to give his team a chance at winning. The A's are a stellar 41-15 in their last 56 home games, including 12-2 in their last 14 games as a home underdog of +110 to +150. They are also 41-17 in their last 58 games following a win, and 7-3 in Parker's last 10 starts overall. Detroit is just 2-9 in their last 11 road games vs a team with a winning record, 0-5 in their last 5 road playoff games, 2-5 in Verlander's last 7 road starts, and 0-6 in his last 6 starts as a road favorite of -110 to -150. Oakland has taken 4 of their last 5 home games vs Detroit and it feels like they've got something special going on at home. I like Oakland at a nice underdog price to finish off the comeback.

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Last night's 4-3 comeback victory for Oakland (96-70) pushed the Total with that number at 7 -- but the Under is 3-0-1 in the last 4 games between these two teams in Oakland. Verlander should be very tough in this one for Detroit (90-76). For the season, the reigning former Cy Young Award winner is 18-8 with a 2.60 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP. Over his last three starts, Verlander is 3-0 with a 1.23 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP. And while we take note that Verlander is typically much better at home in Comerica Park, he steps up in situations like this as they Under is 9-1-1 in the Tigers' last 11 road games when Verlander was facing a team with a winning record. The Under is also 4-0-2 in Detroit's last 6 road games. The A's have seen the Under go 4-1-1 in their last 6 games following a win. Oakland has also played 7 of their last 9 home games Under the Total with the number at 6.5 or less. They counter with Parker who is 13-9 with a 3.45 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP. The rookie right-hander has thrived at home where he owns a 2.61 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP. The A's have played 5 of their last 6 home games Under the Total with Parker pitching as an underdog. And he should fare well against a Tigers' team that has seen the Under go 4-0-1 in their last 5 games against a right-handed starting pitcher. Take the Under in this one.

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Andre GomesFOR THE LARGEST SELECTION OF FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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San Francisco Giants +116
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I really don't mind to take a shot on the Giants with plus money in today's decisive game 5 against the Reds.
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The Reds had all the "momentum" on their side to finish off the Giants in game 3 but now after losing two consecutive games at home I don't think that they will be with the same confidence displayed in the two first games in San Francisco.
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Matt Cain was outpitched by Latos in game 1 of the series but still I think that today Cain will "outpitch" Latos. Cain's stuff is tougher for right handed hitters w/ .184 BA, .211 BABIP & 3.32 FIP vs. .253 BA, .313 BABIP & 3.50 FIP against LH hitters in this season and the Reds have 7 RH hitters vs just 2 LH hitters in their lineup. I understand that Cain is 0-3 this season against the Reds but in the last game he made just two mistakes that were costly and ended up being two home runs. However note that we are not talking about the same "Reds" hitters that were confident are ready to play in game 1 of the series, instead we are talking about a lineup that was dominated yesterday by Tim Lincecum!
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On the other side, the same thing can be said about Mat Latos in a sense that the circumstances surrounding today's game will be different from game 1. First of all, the Giants weren't "ready" to face Latos in that game. Obviously all the scouting report was directed for the Giants hitters to face Johnny Cueto but Cueto didn't even last one mere inning so the Giants were in a tough spot to make adjustments in-game that they weren't able to make. It didn't help the fact that for some reason their bats simply weren't there but for today they are coming from a game in which the top of the order 1-2-3 went 6-11 AB with 6 RBI's.
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This time, the Giants will be ready to face Latos. Latos is having a good season but has clearly worst numbers against left handed hitters w/ .250 BA, .440 SLG & 4.20 FIP and the Giants will have  5 hitters hitting from his left side (Pagan, Sandoval, Belt, Blanco and Crawford).
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Yesterday the Giants didn't use any of their top bullpen guys so it will be tough for the Reds to produce on offense today while the Giants have the momentum factor on their side and especially a superior experience in this type of games and still they are the underdogs in this contest...

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St Louis -107 over WASHINGTON: Let all the talk and criticism begin after the Nationals have a post season meltdown thanks in part to not having Stephen Strasburg in their.  This team really looks flat, while the Cards are once again looking very strong in their push to repeat. The Cards will send out their best starter in Kyle Lohse, who is 17-3 with a 2.87 ERA on the year, including 9-2 with a 3.40 ERA on the road and a 5-1 mark with a 3.60 ERA in day games. He has struggled with Washington, going 1-1 with a 5.47 ERA in his last 5 starts vs them, but the Nats just aren't hitting the ball well right now, scoring just 3.2 rpg in their last 5 games. Ross Detwiler has pitched well at home, going 8-2 with a 2.59 ERA and while he does have a 2.84 ERA in day starts he is just 2-2, while the Nats are just 3-4 in his 7 day starts. He is facing a hot St Louis offense that has averaged 6 rpg in their last 10 games, hitting .274 over that stretch. The Cards  clear advantages at the the plate, plus the momentum as well and experience as well. Look for the Cards to close it out here. 
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NY YANKS -150 over Baltimore: (Google News Play)The Yanks have a wave of momentum after last night huge come from behind win and I will ride that momentum with them here. The O's had been 79-0 when taking a lead into the 7th, until Raul Ibanez changed that. Along with momentum the Yanks now have confidence as well. Joe Saunders has really turned it on for the for the O's down the stretch, but he is 0-1 with a 4.35 ERA in his last 2 starts in this park, plus the Yanks score 5.11 rp/9 and hit .261 vs lefties at home on the year. Phil Hughes has been mediocre at best this year, going 16-13 overall, but he was a very nice 11-4 with a 3.74 ERA in 16 home starts this year and the O's score just 3.97 rp/9 and hit just .234 on the road vs righties on the year. I look for the Yanks to ride the momentum of last night's win right into the ALCS, by ending this series tonight.

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Pittsburgh/ Houston Under 43.5: Was there any doubt which way I would go here. LOL The Titan offense has been bad and it didn't look much better last week with Hasselbeck behind center and I don't think they will be all that much better this week vs a solid Pittsburgh defense. The Steelers have allowed 30+ points in each of their two road games this year, but Tennessee has put up more than 14 points just once this year and last week with Matt in there they could muster just 7 total points vs Minnesota. Knowing their problems at QB and their defensive problems I look for Tennessee to come out and really try and establish the run with Johnson, which should also shorten the game and keep their defense on the sidelines. The Pittsburgh offense has had their problems running the ball this year, but they looked much better last week with Mendenhall back from injury and I expect them to use this week to work on that run game vs a Tennessee defense that has allowed 144 ypg on the ground this year. That should eat plenty of clock. I really expect both teams to play ball control in this one and that should help the game stay in the 30's and not the 40's.

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Baltimore +195 over N.Y. YANKEES
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Incredibly, since 1995, the Yanks have missed the playoffs just one time. They have been knocked out in the first round eight of those 15 years. Most recently, the Yanks were knocked out in round one in four straight years from 2004 to 2007 and were also beaten last season by the Tigers. This is a team that was built to make the playoffs but a lack of pitching once they get here has been their downfall. The same could hold true this year. Outside of C.C. Sabathia, every other starter in the Yanks rotation is a potential liability. Of course the same can be said for the Orioles but they have an outstanding bullpen and closer and they’re not the team taking back close to 2-1 odds.
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The Orioles just won’t go away. They’re not just happy to be here. They come to the park expecting to win and they usually do. Every time you expect the “magic” to end, it doesn’t. This is a young and dangerous team that is playing with house money under no pressure whatsoever.
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We could take the Orioles in game one today at +144. However, +195 in a five game series sure looks better should they win game one. Should they go onto win game 2, they become a big favorite and we could hedge. If they lose the first game, our bet is still alive. The tag on the Orioles is simply too big to ignore.

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Orioles/Yankees OVER 8.5
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I look for the New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles to take part in a slug fest tonight in the Bronx. These Game 4 starters are average at best, and I expect both line-ups to have their way with them.
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Joe Saunders is 10-13 with a 3.99 ERA and 1.337 WHIP in 29 starts this season for Baltimore. He has posted a 5.48 ERA and 1.602 WHIP in eight career starts against New York.
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Phil Hughes is 16-13 with a 4.23 ERA in 32 starts this season for the Yankees. The right-hander sports a 5.33 ERA and 1.480 WHIP in 14 career starts against Baltimore, and the OVER is 9-3-2 in those outings.
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The OVER is 8-2-1 in Hughes' last 11 starts as a favorite. The OVER is 8-2 in Hughes' last 10 starts vs. AL East opponents. The OVER is 8-2-1 in Hughes' last 11 starts vs. Orioles. The OVER is 6-2 in the last 8 meetings in this series. Bet the OVER in this game Thursday.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday October, 11

Jimmy BoydFOR THE LARGEST SELECTION OF FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Detroit Tigers -135
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Look for the Tigers to win the series tonight behind a gem from Justin Verlander. The Tigers are 45-17 in Verlander's last 62 starts, and the big right-hander has been flat out dealing of late. He's 5-0 over his last 5 starts and hasn't given up more than 2 runs in any of them. He has also had his way with the A's. He's 4-0 in his last 4 starts against them while holding them to 1 run or fewer in each. Oakland's Jarrod Parker has taken losses twice this season while facing off against Verlander. Take the Tigers.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday October, 11

Dave PriceFOR THE LARGEST SELECTION OF FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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NY Yankees -159
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The Yankees are worth the price tonight as they look to close out the series. I believe last night's extra-innings win has Baltimore teetering and New York will deliver the knockout punch here. The Yankees are 4-0 in their last 4 games as a favorite of -151 to -200. They are 23-9 in Hughes' last 32 starts as a favorite of -151 to -200 and 18-5 in his last 23 starts as a home favorite of -151 to -200. Bet the Yankees.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday October, 11

Jeff AlexanderFOR THE LARGEST SELECTION OF FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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St. Louis Cardinals -107
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Cards have crushed southpaw starters all season, hitting .284 and scoring 5.6 runs per game off of them. Expect them to keep their bats going tonight against Washington's struggling Ross Detwiler, who has a 6.08 ERA over his last 3 starts. The Cards touched him for 7 runs Sept. 30, and I expect them to have his number again. St. Louis' Kyle Lohse should take care of the rest. He's 17-3 with a 2.87 ERA this season. Bet the Cardinals on the money line.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday October, 11

Scott Delaney

My free winner is going to be on the Detroit Tigers, as I'm sticking with them out in Oaktown. And tonight I want you listing pitchers, as I think with ace Justin Verlander up, the Oakland Athletics' season is coming to an end.

At this point, I honestly don't think there is any hope for the Oakland A's. And that's only because Justin Verlander is on the hill for the Detroit Tigers tonight. Any other circumstances, and we'd be discussing the culmination of an incredible run by the Athletics. So as much as I'd like for them to be in the World Series, I don't think it's going to happen.

It appears this is the end of the road for the A's.

Tuesday night's 2-0 shutout of the Tigers, and last night's 4-3 walkoff win, allowed the A's to stave off elimination. And sure, they may have gained a bit of momentum heading into this game, but I still think Detroit is the better team with the better pitcher, while the Athletics are the younger, inexperienced bunch that is going to be making their exit tonight.

Verlander was phenomenal in Game 1 in Comerica Park, where he struck out 11 A's in seven innings, and I just don't think they're going to get to him tonight.

Take the Tigers tonight, as they wrap this series up.

3♦ DETROIT

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