Free Picks: Service Plays for Saturday, May 11

Free Picks: Service Plays for Saturday, May 11

DUNKEL INDEX

NBA

Oklahoma City at Memphis
The Grizzlies look to follow up their 99-93 win in Game 2 and build on their 6-0 ATS record in their last 6 games following an ATS victory. Memphis is the pick (-5) according to Dunkel, which has the Grizzlies favored by 7 1/2. Dunkel Pick: Memphis (-5)

Game 721-722: Oklahoma City at Memphis (5:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Oklahoma City 123.616; Memphis 131.040
Dunkel Line & Total: Memphis by 7 1/2; 182
Vegas Line & Total: Memphis by 5; 186 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Memphis (-5); Under

Game 723-724: New York at Indiana (8:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: New York 118.193; Indiana 124.222
Dunkel Line & Total: Indiana by 6; 187
Vegas Line & Total: Indiana by 4; 183
Dunkel Pick: Indiana (-4); Over

NHL

Pittsburgh at NY Islanders
The Penguins look to follow up their 4-0 win in Game 5 and take advantage of an Islanders team that is 1-4 in its last 5 games when their opponent allows 2 goals or less in the previous game. Pittsburgh is the pick (-170) according to Dunkel, which has the Penguins favored by 1. Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (-170)

Game 59-60: Pittsburgh at NY Islanders (7:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Pittsburgh 12.111; NY Islanders 10.952
Dunkel Line & Total: Pittsburgh by 1; 5
Vegas Line & Total: Pittsburgh (-170); 6
Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (-170); Under

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DUNKEL INDEX

MLB

Atlanta at San Francisco
The Braves look to take advantage of a San Francisco team that is 0-6 in Madison Bumgarner's last 6 starts as a home favorite of -110 to -150. Atlanta is the pick (+115) according to Dunkel, which has the Braves favored by 1. Dunkel Pick: Atlanta (+115)

Game 901-902: Pittsburgh at NY Mets (1:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Pittsburgh (Liriano) 15.174; NY Mets (Niese) 13.697
Dunkel Line: Pittsburgh by 1 1/2; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: NY Mets (-125); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (+105); Over

Game 903-904: Colorado at St. Louis (2:15 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Colorado (Chacin) 14.673; St. Louis (Wainwright) 16.673
Dunkel Line: St. Louis by 2; 6
Vegas Line: St. Louis (-170); 7
Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (-170); Under

Game 905-906: Chicago Cubs at Washington (4:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Cubs (Jackson) 15.058; Washington (Strasburg) 16.938
Dunkel Line: Washington by 2; 6 1/2
Vegas Line: Washington (-210); 7
Dunkel Pick: Washington (-210); Under

Game 907-908: Atlanta at San Francisco (4:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Atlanta (Maholm) 16.275; San Francisco (Bumgarner) 15.252
Dunkel Line: Atlanta by 1; 7 1/2
Vegas Line: San Francisco (-135); 6 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Atlanta (+115); Over

Game 909-910: Milwaukee at Cincinnati (4:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Milwaukee (Burgos) 14.244; Cincinnati (Latos) 15.544
Dunkel Line: Cincinnati by 1 1/2; 7
Vegas Line: Cincinnati (-185); 8
Dunkel Pick: Cincinnati (-185); Under

Game 911-912: Philadelphia at Arizona (8:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Philadelphia (Lee) 16.225; Arizona (Cahill) 15.024
Dunkel Line: Philadelphia by 1; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: Arizona (-110); 8
Dunkel Pick: Philadelphia (-110); Over

Game 913-914: Miami at LA Dodgers (9:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Miami (Slowey) 15.582; LA Dodgers (Ryu) 14.339
Dunkel Line: Miami by 1; 7 1/2
Vegas Line: LA Dodgers (-185); 6 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Miami (+165); Over

Game 915-916: Toronto at Boston (1:35 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Toronto (Buehrle) 14.051; Boston (Buchholz) 15.645
Dunkel Line: Boston by 1 1/2; 8
Vegas Line: Boston (-210); 9 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Boston (-210); Under

Game 917-918: Cleveland at Detroit (7:08 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Cleveland (Jimenez) 16.029; Detroit (Verlander) 17.294
Dunkel Line: Detroit by 1 1/2; 7
Vegas Line: Detroit (-220); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Detroit (-220); Under

Game 919-920: Baltimore at Minnesota (7:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Baltimore (Johnson) 15.624; Minnesota (Worley) 16.553
Dunkel Line: Minnesota by 1; 9 1/2
Vegas Line: Baltimore (-120); 8 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Minnesota (+100); Over

Game 921-922: NY Yankees at Kansas City (7:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: NY Yankees (Pettitte) 16.044; Kansas City (Shields) 14.981
Dunkel Line: NY Yankees by 1; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: Kansas City (-150); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: NY Yankees (+130); Over

Game 923-924: Texas at Houston (7:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Texas (Darvish) 15.015; Houston (Bedard) 12.959
Dunkel Line: Texas by 2; 6 1/2
Vegas Line: Texas (-260); 8
Dunkel Pick: Texas (-260); Under

Game 925-926: LA Angels at Chicago White Sox (7:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: LA Angels (Williams) 13.895; White Sox (Quintana) 14.432
Dunkel Line: Chicago White Sox by 1/2; 8
Vegas Line: Chicago White Sox (-120); 8 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Chicago White Sox (-120); Under

Game 927-928: Oakland at Seattle (9:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Oakland (Parker) 14.974; Seattle (Maurer) 14.221
Dunkel Line: Oakland by 1/2; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: Seattle (-115); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Oakland (-105); Over

Game 929-930: San Diego at Tampa Bay (6:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Diego (Smith) 15.550; Tampa Bay (Hellickson) 17.248
Dunkel Line: Tampa Bay by 1 1/2; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: Tampa Bay (-165); 8
Dunkel Pick: Tampa Bay (-165); Over

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Marc Lawrence

Philadelphia Phillies at Arizona Diamondbacks
Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies

When the Phillies send Cliff Lee to the mound against the Diamondbacks in Arizona Saturday evening they will do so knowing the crafty lefty is in commanding KW form once again this season with 49 strikeouts and 7 walks. He is also 4-1 in his career team starts against the Snakes. With that, look for Arizona's Trevor Cahill to come up a loser for the 3rd straight game in a row in games against the Phillies here tonight. We recommend a 1-unit play on Philadelphia.

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Jimmy Boyd

Kansas City Royals -144

The Kansas City Royals have quietly compiled an 18-13 record on the season so it is no surprise to see them favored on their home field today. The Yankees have been playing poorly over their past 7 games averaging just 2.7 runs per game. They have a .216 batting average and .278 on base percentage over that same span.

The Royals on the other hand have a .270 batting average over the past 7 games. Kansas City has won five of their last eight games and they have a very favorable advantage when facing a struggling Andy Pettitte. Pettitte is 0-2 in his last three starts with a 7.05 ERA. For Kansas City James Shields will take the mound. Shields has a 1.96 ERA in his last 3 starts so it is safe to say Kansas City is the hot team from every angle coming into this game.

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Jack Jones

A's/Mariners Over 7½

The books have set the bar too low tonight in this game between the Oakland A's and Seattle Mariners. I look for a slugfest due to the lack of talent that will be on the mound in this one.

Jarrod Parker has been simply atrocious for Oakland. The right-hander is 1-5 with a 7.34 ERA and 1.981 WHIP through seven starts this season. Parker has allowed 28 earned runs and 68 base runners over 34 1/3 innings.

Seattle starter Brandon Maurer has only been slightly better, going 2-4 with a 6.07 ERA and 1.449 WHIP through six starts in 2013. He has allowed 20 earned runs and 43 base runners over 29 2/3 innings.

Parker is 1-2 with a 5.94 ERA in three career starts against Seattle. He has allowed 10 earned runs over 9 2/3 innings in his last two starts against the Mariners. Maurer is 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA in one career start against Oakland.

The OVER is 39-17-2 in Oakland's last 58 games overall. The OVER is 6-1 in Parker's last 7 starts overall. The OVER is 22-4 in A's last 26 games vs. a team with a losing record. The OVER is 35-15-1 in A's last 51 games with a total set of 7.0-8.5. Bet the OVER in this game Saturday.

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Alex Smart

NY Islanders +155

The Islanders have already proven that they can beat the Pittsburgh Penguins. They lost game 1 by a 5-0 count and still bounced back with wins. Last time out in game 5 of this series, Thomas Vakoun stood tall for the Pens as they shut the Islanders out by a 4-0 score. Now with their backs against the wall the young speedy Islanders led by their super star John Tavares have the edge, and will come out here with all guns blazing. The linesmakers continue to play to public sentiment, and are giving the Islanders very little respect making them very viable home dogs in this spot. Wise guy money likes the Isles chances tonight.

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Rob Vinciletti

Atlanta vs. San Francisco
Play: Over 6½

These two have flown over in 7 of the last 9 in the series here in San Francisco. Last nights game had 10 runs scored despite a solid pitching matchup in Hudson and Cain. Today its a pair of lefthanders in Malholm for the Braves and Bumgarner for the Giants. Malholm has an elevated 6.23 era in his last 3 starts and has allowed 7 runs in 10 innings with 16 hits and 5 walks here. Bumgarner has a 3.60 home era and allowed 4 runs in 6 innings here vs the Braves last season. The Braves are scoring 5.6 runs the last week and have played over in their last 7. When they are road dogs from +100 to +125 all 5 times they have played over the total. The Giants have gone over in 9 of 12 as a home favorite from -125 to 130 and 6 of 8 in May. When playing a winning team 8 of 11 of their games have played over the total. Look for this game to get over the total as well.

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Art Aronson

Texas Rangers -240

Yu Darvish (5-1, 2.56 ERA) gets the call for the visitors; Darvish threw a career-high 127 pitches vs. the Red Sox on Sunday, going seven frames and finishing with 14 K's. Darvish afterwards commented that he could throw 200 pitches a game no problem: "I have no plans to change my pitching style; I'm not concerned about my pitch counts," Darvish said Thursday. "I don't look for strikeouts or go for strikeouts. I know my pitching coaches are concerned about my pitch counts because of all the strikeouts. But as long as I have four days to rest, I don't care how many pitches I throw." The 26-year old phenom will be opposed by the 34-year old Erik Bedard (0-2, 7.36 ERA) who will once again be moved from the bullpen to make this start. Bedard has made five starts and two relief appearances for Houston this year, going 0-2 with a deplorable 7.36 ERA and a 1.82 WHIP. While I almost never play favorites of this size, in this case I believe that the clear talent discrepancy both on the mound and at the plate absolutely justifies in laying the larger price.

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Jim Feist

Oakland Athletics at Seattle Mariners
Pick: Oakland Athletics

The Athletics are 44-13 in their last 57 vs. a team with a losing record and 37-16 against the American League West. Oakland has a terrific offense, No. 1 in baseball in runs scored, 4th in on-base percentage. They face Seattle righty Brandon Maurer, who is 2-4 and saddled with a 6.07 ERA. The Mariners are 10-22 in their last 32 games following an off day. And when these teams meet the Athletics are 9-2 in the last 11 meetings, including 4-0 in the last 4 meetings in Seattle.

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Dave Cokin

Baltimore Orioles at Minnesota Twins
Pick: Baltimore Orioles

Relentless. That's the best word I can come up with to describe the Baltimore Orioles. This team just refuses to roll over even when fall behind by a substantial margin, and talk about being tough as nails when the game is on the line. That fortitude was on display again Friday night as the Birds looked like easy losers against Minnesota. But when the dust settled after ten innings, it was another close and late win for the Orioles. Like I said, relentless.

Steve Johnson gets the start for the Orioles tonight. Johnson was in a spring training duel with Jake Arrieta for the final spot in the Baltimore rotation, but he lost out when he suffered a back injury. Now, following his rehab stint, Johnson is ready to go and this looms as a really huge opportunity for the righty. The Orioles would love to land on someone reliable for that fifth starting spot. Here's Johnson's chance to step forward and lay claim to a regular spot in the rotation. This is not a guy with tremendous stuff, but one thing we found about Johnson in his rookie campaign was that he's a gritty competitor who probably gets better results than he ought to. In other words, he fits right in with the personality of this team, and that's a positive.

Vance Worley has had some very rough outings for the Twins. Worley probably doesn't get as much from what he's got as he should. I can't tell you why that is, but Worley is a guy who should be good enough to be a solid mid-rotation type, but the reality is that he's nowhere close to that presently. He can look terrific for multiple innings but when he hits a rough patch, he seems to unravel. That figures to be a problem against an opportunistic entry like the Orioles.

The Twins were on a nice little roll coming out of a very good series at Fenway, and looked to be en route to a good win last night. But everything managed to fall apart and I think it's fair to say that Worley is not exactly stopper material thus far this season. I believe the right side tonight will be the Orioles, and agree with them being posted as road chalk.

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Bruce Marshall

Pittsburgh Pirates at New York Mets
Pick: Pittsburgh Pirates

Francisco Liriano returns to the bigs this afternoon at Citi Field as his Pirates look to make it two straight over the Mets following last night's 7-3 win. Recent Pittsburgh hitting stars Garrett Jones (batting .327 on the road) and Starling Marte (.355 away from home) continue to post big numbers but all eyes will be on Liriano, a one-time Twins ace who has battled arm problems in recent years. Fortunately for him he will be facing a punchless Mets offense that has managed just ten runs over its past four games and has provided little run support for starter Jonathon Niese, who has needed plenty of help in recent outings with a 5.l68 ERA over his last four starts. Liriano will likely be asked to only go five innings or so and allow the airtight Bucs bullpen a chance to close out the win. Play Pirates on Money Line

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Bryan Power

Cleveland vs. Detroit
Pick: Detroit

It's VERY rare that I would even touch a line this high.  But sometimes it's worth it.  Such is the case Saturday night when Detroit sends out Justin Verlander to face the Cleveland Indians.  As I expected, the Tigers beat the Indians down in Friday's series opener 10-4 (winner for me).  Today, should be even easier.....

Over the last two seasons, Verlander has a perfect 13-0 team start record in home night games. That should be enough right there as we all know how good Verlander is. He comes in with a 1.55 ERA in seven starts and he's been even sharper lately with a 0.86 ERA and 0.952 WHIP his last three starts.  He took a no-hitter into the seventh inning his last start, a 9-0 win over Houston. He's allowed more than one earned run in only two starts this year. Meanwhile, after a dreadful start to the season Ubaldo Jimenez has won back to back starts for Cleveland.  That ends here. His ERA is still 6.37 in six starts.

To rehash from yesterday's analysis, home field advantage has been huge in the past when these teams meet.  The Indians are now just 8-29 here at Comerica Park since 2009.  Detroit is now averaging around 6.5 runs per game at home.  Cleveland is due to start giving some back after winning 10 of 11.

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Allen Eastman

Seattle over Oakland

I am going with the visitors in this game. We should be able to get a nice underdog price on the Mariners, and I think that they will come through for me once again. The Mariners will be going with young Brandon Maurer in this game. The kid got off to a rocky start this year. But before his last start he has earned three straight quality starts against the Angels and Rangers. Maurer has a score to settle with the A's. They knocked him around for six runs in six innings in his MLB debut back on April 4. He is going to make adjustments. This series is in Seattle, and this is the final series of a long road trip for the A's. They played in New York and Cleveland and now they will be tired when they take on a division rival this weekend. Seattle has a day off on Friday. They will be well-rested and will take advantage. Go with the home team here. I think the line will be somewhere between Seattle (+110) and! Seattle (-115). Play the small number either way.

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MATT RIVERS

Your comp play for Saturday is the Over in the Knicks-Pacers game.

Somehow the Pacers found themselves scoreless for over half of the 4th quarter on Tuesday night, as they let the Knicks run away with Game 2 and even the series.

That game wound up pushing the closing total of 184, but I don't think that will be the case this Saturday night. With a few extra days to rest, expect the offense to get humming early in Game 3, and expect the Knicks and the Pacers to head Over the posted total.

Indy is still 6-2-1 Over the total their last 9 games dating back to the regular season, and the Over also happens to be 6-0 the last 6 times the Pacers have set foot on their home hardwood this season.

2 of the last 3 series meetings played between the teams in Indianapolis have also played high, and with Stoudemire expected back for New York, look for the offense to get a bit of a boost.

I like Game 3 between the Knicks and the Pacers to make its way Over the total.

2* NEW YORK-INDIANA OVER

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CRAIG DAVIS

Free play of the day on the Indiana Pacers over the NY Knicks in their first game at home.

Game 1 was not a fluke. The Pacers outworked and outhustled the Knicks and clearly played better defense... which has been their M.O. all season.

At times Indiana isn't a fun team to watch, but that boring brand of basketball can lull teams to sleep while they're quietly going on a 12-2 run to get back in a game or build a lead.

Either way, the Pacers get to come back home where they play a lot better and catch a team that needed a HUGE, late 4th quarter run to win their last basketball game.

Indiana has been in both games and could easily be heading home with a 2-0 lead. Don't think they forgot how Game 2 ended... they haven't.

The Pacers won their three home games in the first round by 18.3 points and have proven all regular season that they are one of the best home teams in the league.

The Knicks made the mistake of allowing Indiana to get that Game 1 win and now they have to steal one back on the road. It won't be today.

Take the Pacers as your free play of the day.

2* INDIANA

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Bob Balfe

Grizzles -5 over Thunder

I think the line in this game really says it all. Vegas has no confidence in the Thunder being able to win this game. If you watched OKC all they do is give the ball to Durant. Memphis is geared up to win a title. This team really has no flaws and plays the game the correct way. Without Westbrook the Thunder just do not have enough juice. I would really be shocked if Memphis does not win this game by double digits. Take the Grizzles


Mets -110 over Pirates

Francisco Liriano will make his season debut today coming off a broken arm. This is his non throwing arm, but I don't expect him to get worked that hard today. John Niese has been up and down this year, but he pitches well at home and has great numbers when facing the Pirates. Take the Mets.

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Big Kat Sports

Philadelphia Phillies vs. Arizona Diamondbacks
Take: Philadelphia Phillies

The Philadelphia Phillies will look to bounce back after back to back one run losses to the Diamondbacks when the two teams meet tonight at Chase Field in Arizona. The Phillies got an excellent pitching performance from call-up Tyler Cloyd last night, who pitched into the 7th, giving up just 2 hits and 2 runs but the bullpen couldn’t hold the lead for him as Mike Adams gave up a run in the bottom of the 8th. Cliff Lee, who has been good for the Phillies this year, will be on the hill this evening. He has posted a 3-2 record with a 3.26 ERA so far on the season and got the win on Monday over the Giants, giving up 2 runs over 8 innings. Lee has struck out 40 hitters while walking only 7 in 49.2 innings and he has been good in his career against Arizona, going 3-1 with a 3.50 ERA. Trevor Cahill, who has won his last two starts, will be on the mound tonight for the DBacks. He started the season 0-3, but he has pitched much better than that as he has posted a 2.80 and opponents are hitting just .225 against him. He has struggled a bit against Philadelphia in his career, posting a 0-1 record in 2 starts last year while allowing 7 runs in 12 innings. Despite losing the first two games of the series, the Phillies have actually been good in the spot they are in here tonight in Arizona. They are 17-4 in Lee’s last 21 starts on the road against teams with a winning record and have won 4 straight games started by Lee on the road when they were listed as an underdog. They have also had success against the NL West with Lee on the bump, winning 13 of 19. The DBacks, who are tied with the Giants for the lead in the NL West, have actually struggled in the situation they find themselves here at home tonight. They are just 3-7 with Cahill on the mound against teams with a losing record and have lost Cahill’s last 5 starts against teams from the NL East. Pair that with the fact that the DBacks have lost 7 of their last 10 at home against teams with a losing record and we’ll roll with the Phillies tonight to get the win.

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Atlanta Braves at San Francisco GiantsFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The simulator shows a high probability that the Braves will win this game. Atlanta is 11-4 (+9.2 Units) against the money line in road games facing a starting pitcher that throws more than 6.5 innings per start in games played over the last two seasons. Moreover, Atlanta is a solid 22-9 (+14.8 Units) against the money line in road games facing a starting pitcher that gives up 5.5 or less hits/start over the last 3 seasons. Giants will start Bumgarner and he has not done well against the NL East posting a 3-11 (-10.4 Units) against the money line over the last 3 seasons. Bumgarner is just 1-3 with a 4.03 ERA and a 1.276 WHIP in five career starts against the Braves. Braves starter Maholm got roughed up in his third-to-last start, but has responded very well allowing two earned runs in each of his last two starts. Take the Braves.

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Pittsburgh Pirates vs. New York MetsFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The Mets will get to see their third lefty in a row as Francisco Liriano makes his 2013 debut. Liriano made three starts for the Pirates AAA team giving up 6 runs and 15 hits in 16 innings. The southpaw's worst start came in his last outing when he gave up 4 runs and seven hits in five innings. Only three Mets’ hitters have seen the former Twins’ pitcher before with Marlon Byrd getting three hits in four at-bats against him. The Mets are hitting .227 in the daytime and they are putting up over 4 runs per game in those contests. Jon Niese enjoys pitching at home. He has allowed 8 runs and 21 hits in four starts in Citi Field. Niese beat the Pirates last year in Pittsburgh, and he has yet to lose to the Pirates in three career starts against them. Gaby Sanchez (4-19) has faced Niese the most with Russell Martin (1-8) and Neil Walker (1-6) also struggling against him. The Pirates are hitting .200 in nine games against left-handed starters. The Mets have won six of their last ten games at home against the Pirates, and they should win again on Saturday afternoon.

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Oakland / Seattle Over 7.5FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Despite the fact that both teams are not in their Overall Best Hitting Posture facing righthanded pitching my number for this game is 8.5 and good enough for 2%. Most recently and over the last 5 games both teams are experiencing sub-par work from their Pen and there is certainly a good chance that we will see those people enter the game tonight, perhaps earlier than planned. Jarrod Parker is snot living up to his Billing, whatever that might be. This guys has let the Bad Guys get 50 Hits in 34 innings of work and he has been very consistently bad. He is also dealing with neck soreness but says he is going to give it a try tonight. Ok then! For whatever reason the Seattle Starter has not liked pitching here at this park and is sporting a 6.35 ERA in 4 starts. He is capable of throwing a decent game though and the only reason why this play is not rated higher than it is. For this time of year we are going to have better than average weather for the hitters and there is no doubt that the Roof will be open. That's a good thing right? Oakland continues to be an OVER machine and especially when they venture out of town, and when they play on real grass.

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