Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Dave Price

Dodgers -126

The Dodgers have the edge on the mound with Kershaw, who is in far better form than Gallardo. The sensational southpaw has a 1.40 ERA on the season and a 0.79 ERA over his last 3 starts. Gallardo has a 4.50 ERA on the season and a 5.06 ERA over his last 3 starts. The Brewers are only 4-13 against lefty starters this season as they're averaging just 3.4 runs in those games. The Dodgers are 39-16 in Kershaw's last 55 starts as a favorite while the Brewers are 7-23 in Gallardo's last 30 starts as an underdog. Take the Dodgers.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Jack Jones

Washington Nationals +128

The Washington Nationals are showing solid value as a nice-sized road underdog to the San Francisco Giants tonight. Given how poorly Ryan Vogelsong has pitched this season, the Giants should not be the favorite in this one.

Vogelsong has gone 1-4 with an 8.06 ERA and 1.839 WHIP in eight starts for San Francisco in 2013. He is 0-2 with a 9.28 ERA in four home starts, and 0-2 with a 13.09 ERA in his last three starts overall.

Washington is 56-31 (+18.5 Units) against the money line vs. poor power teams - averaging 0.9 or less HR's/game over the last 2 seasons. The Nationals are 23-8 (+13.0 Units) against the money line after having lost 4 or 5 of their last 6 games over the last 2 seasons. The Giants are 1-5 in their last 6 games overall. Bet the Nationals Monday.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

SPORTS WAGERS

DETROIT/Chicago over 5 +104

Perhaps the best thing that happened to the Blackhawks was that 4-1 loss in Game 2. Chicago has not been challenged in these playoffs yet. They cruised by the Wild in the first round and barely broke a sweat in doing so. In the first game of this series, Chicago was soundly outplayed but won again 4-1. The Blackhawks took a 1-0 lead in Game 2 and it looked like it was going to be another ho-hum win. But as fate would have it, the Red Wings stuck with it and went on to win 4-1 to tie this series up. For the first time all season, including the 48-game regular season schedule, the Blackhawks are facing a little adversity as the series shifts to Hockeytown USA. The winner of both games so far has scored four goals. The last time the Blackhawks played in Detroit, they scored seven times. Both teams are loaded with elite offensive talent. Detroit’s defense is prone to making some serious miscues and Chicago’s goaltending is not its strong suit.

With so much offense on both sides, expect the scoring chances in this one to be plentiful. Corey Crawford was uncharacteristically incredible in Game 1 yet there were still five goals scored in the game. Crawford went back to being Corey Crawford in Game 2. The real key here for this to go over is the Blackhawks. Jonathan Toews is going to come back even stronger and won't let Henrik Zetterberg physically dominate him like he did in Chicago. An aggressive, physical forecheck is crucial to beat Chicago but the Blackhawks' defense is so mobile that one quick pass can trap multiple players. If Detroit is a split second late, Chicago will blow right by them. It's why the Blackhawks are the best team in the league and why it's hard to put together back-to-back efforts like the Red Wings did Saturday against them. In Detroit, the Red Wings don’t get shut out and rarely score less than two goals. The Blackhawks rarely score less than two no matter where they play and that sets this one up nicely to go over the number.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

NHL Predictions

Chicago Blackhawks -130)

The Red Wings surprised everyone out playing the Blackhawks in Chicago on Saturday and winning 4-1. The Blackhawks will now head into Detroit looking for at least a split in Games 3 and 4. Chicago is 19-4-3 on the season on the road, including going 1-1 in Minnesota, with the loss being a 3-2 overtime loss where they outshot Minnesota 37-27. Chicago has already beaten Detroit 2-1 and 7-1 in Detroit this year, and they are now 5-1 against the Red Wings this season. I'll lay a bit of chalk and go with the Blackhawks to bounce back with a much better effort and win Game 3 to go up 2-1.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Jeff Scott Sports

3 UNIT PLAYS

Cincinnati/ NY Mets Over 7.5: Johnny Cueto is back for the Reds, but the Mets haven't been a great team for him to pitch against as he has a 4.45 ERA in his last 5 starts vs them. The Mets are struggling offensively, but still the average 3.86 rpg at home and have scored 4.53 rp/9 off of righties at home. Their offenses should be good for 3 or 4 runs in this one, while the Reds offense does the rest. Cincinnati has been hot offensively, scoring 5.4 rpg and hitting .272 in their last to games. The Reds offense should continue their hot hitting vs a struggling Shaun Marcum, who is 0-4 with a 6.75 ERA on the year overall, including 0-3 with a 6.40 ERA in 4 starts this year. Shaun has made 2 home starts this year and has a 9.35 ERA in those starts, with the two games averaging 11.5 rpg. Combined these teams have gone 51-32 to the over this year, while the Mets have gone 15-6 to the Over in their last 21 games as a dog and 7 of Cincinnati's last 9 road games have gone over as well. At least 9 runs in this one. 


St Louis/ San Diego Over 7: Shelby Miller is in a groove, but how much longer can he really keep it up? He has an 0-.44 ERA in his last 3 starts, but I expect a very hot Padres offense to tag him for a few in this one. Usually you don't see the word "Hot" connected with the San Diego offense, but that's exactly what they are. The Padres have averaged 4.6 rpg in their last 10 games and 6 rpg in their last 5. The last 2 years t home tis Padres team scored 3.83 rpg and 3.15 rpg, but with the fences moved in this year they have put up 4.23 rpg in their home games so far. The Cardinals have been a good offensive team all year long, averaging 4.67 rpg overall, including 5 rpg on the road. Today they take on Jason Marquis, who has a 5.10 ERA in his last 5 starts vs them. Jason has pitched well this year, with a 3.49 ERA overall, but he has a 4.15 ERA in 5 home starts this year and a 5.01 ERA in 4 night starts, so this Cardinals offenses should be good for at least 5 runs in this one. Both offenses are playing well and Marquis struggles in this park, while Miller is due to get hit a bit. I expect at least 3 runs from each squad here so at the very worse we would get a push.


LA Dodgers -135 over MILWAUKEE:  Great situational spot for LA in this one. Fist we have a Milwaukee squad that is off a 10 game road trip, and we know that teams generally don't do all that well in first games back from long trips. Next we have a Milwaukee squad that is a miserable 4-13 vs southpaws on the year, scoring just 3.4  rpg off of them in those games. Now they face one of the best lefties in the game in Clayton Kershaw, who is 4-2 with a 1.40 ERA on the year, while in his last 3 starts he is 1-0 with an 0.79 ERA and an 0.79 WHIP. He does have a 3.92 ERA in 7 career starts vs the Brewers, but in 2 Career starts in Miller Park he is 2-0 with an 0.64 ERA.  The Brewers send out Gallardo, who is struggling with an 0-2 mark and a 5.06 ERA in his last 3 starts. Yovani is 2-0 with a 3.90 ERA at home, but his team is 3-2 in his home starts and they gave him 7 rpg worth of support in those starts. They won't come close to giving him that much here. Yovani has also struggled with LA, going 1-3 with a 6.21 ERA in 6 career starts vs them, including 0-2 with a 4.78 ERA in 4 career starts vs them here. Lastly we note that the Brewers are just 3-14 in their last 17 games overall. They are not playing well at all and that gives a Dodgers team that is in need of a big win a great shot at picking up one here.


Washington/ San Francisco Over 8: Zach Duke has been horrible out of the pen for the Nats, with an 8.40 ERA in 9 appearances and now he gets a start an he has been horrible in the role in his career. Actually his first year in the bigs was good as he went 8-2 with a 1.81 ERA in 14 starts that year for the Pirates, but since then Zach has made 154 starts and he has gone 39-76 with a 4.84 ERA. In 98 appearances on the road (84 starts) he has a 4.86 ERA. He does have a 1.08 ERA in this park, but hasn't started a game here since 2009. He will struggle vs a solid San Fran offense that has averaged 4.59 rpg game and 5.4 rpg in their last 10 games overall. The Nats offense is not that great, scoring just 3.4 rpg in their last 10 games. but they will be facing Ryan Vogelsong, who has an 8.06 ERA on the year and a 9.28 ERA in his 4 home starts. His home starts have put up 11.3 rpg on the year and he was lit up for 8 ER's in his meeting vs the Nats earlier in the year. Let's also note that the Over is 15-5-1 in San Fran's last 21 games overall and 21-10 in Washington's last 31 road games. Double digit runs here at least.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Big Kat Sports

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Detroit Red Wings
Play: Chicago Blackhawks

The Chicago Blackhawks will look to regain home ice advantage in their second round series with the Red Wings when the two teams meet tonight at the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit. The two teams split Games 1 and 2 with Chicago winning the first and Detroit the second by identical 4-1 scores. Corey Crawford and Jimmy Howard will once again be the two guys in the crease for their respective teams. Crawford has been a bit better than Howard here in the playoffs as he has posted a 1.64 GAA and .937 save % compared to a 2.58 GAA and .916 save % for Howard. Despite their loss in Game 2, the Hawks have been dominant in the spot they are in here tonight against the Red Wings. They are 21-7 in their last 28 road games and have won 39 of their last 51 games against teams from the Central Division. They have also been excellent in the second round of the playoffs, winning 8 of their last 11. The Red Wings, who had to go 7 games to dispose of the Ducks in the first round may have actually struggled in the situation they are in here this evening,. They are just 1-4 in their last 5 games following a win and have won only 4 of their last 14 games against teams from the Central Division. Pair that with the fact that Chicago has won 8 of their last 9 games against the Wings, including 4 straight at Joe and we’ll lay the small price with them on the road tonight to get the win and take back control of the series.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Andrew Lange 

Arizona at Colorado
Play: Arizona

Arizona's Patrick Corbin has been flawless this season with a 1.52 ERA and solid 41-to-17 K-to-BB ratio. He’s a young lefty arm who has seen an uptick in velocity and plays on a quality team that is not overpriced in the betting markets. It would be foolish to think Corbin isn't going to regress some (see 3.91 xFIP) but despite his success the betting markets continue to bet against this kid and as a result his value has remained. He should be north of -125 in this particular matchup yet you can get him for as cheap as -110. Colorado's Jon Garland has thrown three straight games in which he's lasted only five innings and allowed three earned runs. With 26 strikeouts in 46 innings Garland simply isn't able to fool many batters at this point in his career. There are some metrics that suggest the starting pitching matchup is close but the eye test tells me to support the premium lefty arm at a discounted price.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, May 20

Bob Balfe

Giants / Nationals Over 8

The Giants have been getting shelled the last week or so. Teams are putting double digits up on them. Zach Duke used to be a favorite of mine about 5 years ago, but he has fallen off the map and is always on alert to get rocked. I don't know what is wrong with Vogelsong either this year as a starter, but I think this game is set up to be an offensive thriller however I couldn't careless if the score was 5-4. Just cash in for us. Take the Over.

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