Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, June 6

Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, June 6

DUNKEL INDEX

NBA

San Antonio at Miami
The Spurs look to take advantage of a Miami team that is coming off a 99-76 win over Indiana and is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games following a SU victory of more than 10 points. San Antonio is the pick (+5 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Spurs favored by 4. Dunkel Pick: San Antonio (+5 1/2)

Game 701-702: San Antonio at Miami (9:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Antonio 130.197; Miami 126.114
Dunkel Line & Total: San Antonio by 4; 192
Vegas Line & Total: Miami by 5 1/2; 188 1/2
Dunkel Pick: San Antonio (+5 1/2); Over


NHL

Chicago at Los Angeles 
The Kings look to build on their 27-5 record in their last 32 home games when the total is less than 5. Los Angeles is the pick (-125) according to Dunkel, which has the Kings favored by 1 1/2. Dunkel Pick: Los Angeles (-125)

Game 13-14: Chicago at Los Angeles (9:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Chicago 11.764; Los Angeles 13.187
Dunkel Line & Total: Los Angeles by 1 1/2; 3
Vegas Line & Total: Los Angeles (-125); 4 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Los Angeles (-125); Under

WNBA

Phoenix at Minnesota
The Mercury look to take advantage of a Minnesota team that is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games against a team with a losing SU record.  Phoenix is the pick (+9 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Lynx favored by only 8. Dunkel Pick: Phoenix (+9 1/2)

Game 601-602: Phoenix at Minnesota (8:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Phoenix 103.575; Minnesota 111.405
Dunkel Line & Total: Minnesota by 8; 176
Vegas Line & Total: Minnesota by 9 1/2; 172 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Phoenix (+9 1/2); Over

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, June 6

DUNKEL INDEX

MLB

NY Yankees at Seattle
The Yankees look to take advantage of a Seattle team that is 1-6 in Aaron Harang's last 7 starts as an underdog. New York is the pick (-125) according to Dunkel, which has the Yankees favored by 2. Dunkel Pick: NY Yankees (-125)

Game 901-902: NY Mets at Washington (7:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: NY Mets (Marcum) 15.312; Washington (Gonzalez) 14.252
Dunkel Line: NY Mets by 1; 8
Vegas Line: Washington (-185); 7
Dunkel Pick: NY Mets (+165); Over

Game 903-904: Arizona at St. Louis (7:15 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Arizona (Kennedy) 15.457; St. Louis (Miller) 16.350
Dunkel Line: St. Louis by 1; 6
Vegas Line: St. Louis (-180); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (-180); Under

Game 905-906: Philadelphia at Milwaukee (8:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Philadelphia (Cloyd) 15.372; Milwaukee (Peralta) 13.237
Dunkel Line: Philadelphia by 2; 10
Vegas Line: Milwaukee (-145); 9
Dunkel Pick: Philadelphia (+125); Over

Game 907-908: San Diego at Colorado (8:40 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Diego (Cashner) 15.121; Colorado (Chacin) 17.053
Dunkel Line: Colorado by 2; 9
Vegas Line: Colorado (-150); 9 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Colorado (-150); Under

Game 909-910: Atlanta at LA Dodgers (10:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Atlanta (Hudson) 16.653; LA Dodgers (Greinke) 14.162
Dunkel Line: Atlanta by 2 1/2; 8
Vegas Line: LA Dodgers (-110); 7
Dunkel Pick: Atlanta (-110); Over

Game 911-912: Tampa Bay at Detroit (1:08 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Tampa Bay (Hernandez) 15.500; Detroit (Scherzer) 16.842
Dunkel Line: Detroit by 1 1/2; 8
Vegas Line: Detroit (-185); 9
Dunkel Pick: Detroit (-185); Under

Game 913-914: Baltimore at Houston (2:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Baltimore (Gonzalez) 15.464; Houston (Norris) 16.306
Dunkel Line: Houston by 1; 10
Vegas Line: No Line
Dunkel Pick: N/A

Game 915-916: Texas at Boston (7:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Texas (Holland) 16.274; Boston (Lester) 15.123
Dunkel Line: Texas by 1; 7
Vegas Line: Boston (-140); 8 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Texas (+120); Under

Game 917-918: Oakland at Chicago White Sox (8:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Oakland (Straily) 16.057; White Sox (Quintana) 13.732
Dunkel Line: Oakland by 2 1/2; 7
Vegas Line: Oakland (-130); 8
Dunkel Pick: Oakland (-130); Under

Game 919-920: Minnesota at Kansas City (8:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Minnesota (Pelfrey) 14.857; Kansas City (Davis) 15.995
Dunkel Line: Kansas City by 1; 10
Vegas Line: Kansas City (-145); 9
Dunkel Pick: Kansas City (-145); Over

Game 921-922: NY Yankees at Seattle (10:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: NY Yankees (Hughes) 15.997; Seattle (Harang) 14.020
Dunkel Line: NY Yankees by 2; 7
Vegas Line: NY Yankees (-125); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: NY Yankees (-125); Under

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, June 6

Marc LawrenceFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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New York Yankees at Seattle MarinersFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Prediction: New York YankeesFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Ichiro Suzuki and the Yankees open a four-game visit with the Mariners in Seattle Thursday evening where the Pinstripes send Philip Hughes to the mound against Aaron Harang and Suzuki's ex-mates. Hughes takes the mound in strong KW form with 18 strikeouts and 4 walks in his last three starts knowing he is 2-0 with a 1.38 ERA in his career team starts in this park. He is also 3-0 away in his career team starts during June. With Harang 0-4 in his last four team starts during June, look for Ichiro to have the last laugh here tonight. We recommend a 1-unit play on the Yankees.

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Matt FargoFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Oakland A's vs. Chicago White SoxFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Play: Chicago White SoxFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The White Sox snapped their eight-game losing streak with a win in Seattle yesterday but they almost found an improbable way to lose again. After 0-0 score going into the 14th, Chicago put up a five-spot only to let Seattle do the same in the bottom of the inning. The White Sox then put up two runs in the 16th and held on. Now a return home can help in the task of starting a winning streak. Jose Quintana takes the hill for the White Sox and his last start was also against Oakland. Despite allowing 10 hits and issuing three walks, he only gave up three runs. He has allowed two runs or fewer in three of his last four home starts and overall, he has a solid 3.86 ERA. The A's rebounded from a tough loss on Tuesday against the Brewers to win yesterday and take the series. Oakland has won five of six heading into Chicago and Daniel Straily has been pitching excellent of late. He has a 0.95 ERA and 0.68 WHIP over his last three starts, all being quality performances and all resulting in Oakland wins. Prior to that, he had allowed 19 runs over his previous four starts so this is the time to fade him as going against a non-elite pitcher that is on a quality start run is a great go against situation. The White Sox keep their momentum rolling.

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Braves vs. DodgersFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Play: Under 7FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Tim Hudson (4-4, 4.80 ERA) gets the call for the visitors; Hudson gave up one unearned run off three hits and a walk while striking out four over 7 1/3's innings in his team's eventual 2-1 win over the Nationals on Saturday. While he's struggled on the road thus far, here's a perfect opportunity to get untracked vs. the soft-hitting Dodgers (note that Hudson would finish 8-2 with a very respectable 3.28 ERA away from friendly confines in 2012). Hudson will be opposed by Zach Greinke (2-1, 4.80 ERA) who gave up four runs off nine hits with three walks while striking out three over 5 1/3's innings of work, escaping with a no-decision despite his team falling 7-6 to the Rockies on Saturday. Greinke looks to turn things around in the front of the home town crowd and improve upon his already stellar 2-0 with a 2.87 ERA in three starts in Dodger Stadium to date. Two veteran pitchers facing off and each looking to shake off sub-par stretches; I believe the stage is set for these starters to battle into the latter frames, ultimately causing this contest to sneak below the posted number in the end.

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Rob VincilettiFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Padres vs. RockiesFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Play: Over 9½FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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This game fits a solid Baseball system that plays to games going over the total if we have a home favorite at -140 or higher and both teams are off a road dog win at +140 or higher in their last game. The Rockies beat the Reds last night as a big dog and the Padres pulled a big upset over The Dodgers which sets up this system. Colorado averages 5.3 runs at home and 5 runs per game Vs Division teams. The Padres have played over 6 of the last 8 times they are a road dog off a road dog win at +140 or higher, vs an opponent who was also on the road. The Pitching has J.Chacin for Colorado and he has a 5.26 home Era. San Diego counters with A. Cashner and he has a 4.64 road era and allowed 6 runs in 3+ innings vs Colorado in an earlier start. Look for these two teams to play over the the posted total tonight.

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Freddy WillsFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Oakland A's vs. Chicago White SoxFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM   
Play: Oakland A'sFOR  FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The A's are winners of 18 of their last 23 games and they send Dan Straily to the mound against a losing team in the White Sox which is even more amazing because the A's are 45-13 in their last 58 games vs. a losing team. Straily is 3-0 with a 0.68 WHIP and a 0.95 ERA over his last three starts combined. I do not see this slowing down against the White Sox who are 28th in OPS vs. RHP and scoring just 2.17 runs per 9 over their last 10 games vs. RHP. The White Sox are ranked 30th, 26th and 21st against Straily's three pitches while Straily is backed by an offense scoring 1.5 more runs per 9 vs. LHP compared to the Sox vs. RHP and their bullpen is over a 1 run better too. It's a complete mismatch and we have some value on our side at -122, but first let me get into who Straily will be facing.
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Jose Quintana is a nice little lefty with some good speed, but often has control issues and I believe he will struggle against the A's who are ranked 3rd in OPS vs. LHP. They are also top 10 against all three of his pitches. Quintana only gave up 3 ER in Oakland's huge ball park in his last start, but he allowed 13 guys to reach base for a 2.44 WHIP which he won't be able to get away with for a second game in a row.
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Notable Hot Starters:
Max Scherzer (2-1, 22 IP, 0.64 WHIP, 2.05 ERA)
Gio Gonzalez (1-2, 20 IP, 1.10 WHIP, 2.70 ERA)
Bud Norris (2-1, 19 IP, 1.32 WHIP, 0.95 ERA)
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Notable Cold Starters:
Roberto Hernadez (2-1, 14.2 IP, 1.36 WHIP, 6.14 ERA)
John Lester (1-2, 19.1 IP, 1.60 WHIP, 6.05 ERA)
Mike Pelfrey (0-3, 13 IP, 1.77 WHIP, 6.92 ERA)
Wade Davis (1-2, 16.1 IP, 1.84 WHIP, 6.61 ERA)
Zach Greinke (1-2, 13.1 IP, 2.62 WHIP, 8.78 ERA)

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Jeffrey BrandesFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Arizona vs. St. LouisFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Play: Over 7½FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Pitchers:FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS: IAN KENNEDY (R) ERA: 4.74 W/L: 3-3
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS: SHELBY MILLER (R) ERA: 1.82 W/L: 6-3
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Key Trends:FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Arizona's last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Arizona's last 5 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Arizona's last 5 games when playing St. Louis
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Arizona's last 6 games when playing on the road against St. Louis
The total has gone OVER in 5 of St. Louis's last 6 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of St. Louis's last 6 games at home

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Jim FeistFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Twins at RoyalsFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: OverFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The over is 9-3 in Twins last 12 vs. a team with a losing record and a pair of weak pitchers are on the mound. Mike Pelfrey (6.66 ERA) has been awful for the Twins and getting worse with an 0-2 record and a 6.92 ERA his last three starts. He hasn't had a quality start in four straight games. KC righty Wade Davis (3-5, 6.16 ERA) has seen better days and is struggling of late, with an 0-2 record and a 6.16 ERA his last three starts. And the over is 3-0-1 in the Twins last four road games vs. a team with a losing record. Play the Twins/Royals over the total.

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Dave CokinFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Texas Rangers at Boston Red Sox
Pick: Texas RangersFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The Rangers and Red Sox conclude their Fenway Park series tonight. Boston demolished the Rangers on Monday, but Texas came back to pull out a tight 3-2 win on Tuesday night, making for a terrific rubber match hookup tonight.
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Derek Holland has really put it all together for the Rangers. Holland is not getting as much attention as some of the more marquee names, but there isn't much doubt that he's pitching at an All-Star level this season. There is nothing even remotely phony about Holland's base numbers. He has the look of a guy who has really figured it all out, and when you're making out your list of aces, the Texas southpaw needs to be included.
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The Red Sox will counter with a talented lefty of their own, as Jon Lester toes the rubber tonight. Lester is in a little bit of a valley right now, but he's certainly capable of shutting down any lineup when he's right, and the overall Lester numbers for the season are still pretty solid.
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Holland owns the better overall numbers, and he also beats Lester on the matchup stats. Even during his most erratic period, Holland has always done really well against Boston. Lester's numbers vs. the Rangers are not terrible, but they're pretty pedestrian for the most part.
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Neither the Rangers nor the Red Sox have been especially potent against lefties this season. There are enough bats on hand to render that comment ridiculous on any given night. But the fact remains both sides have done a better job of damaging righties this season. Probably a minimal edge to the Boston side on the offensive side of the ledger, but not enough to offset the pitching advantage that looks to be on the Rangers side.
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The number here is really the key. At pick 'em, I'd probably lean to the Rangers but certainly no more than that. However, with the number where it is right now, I can definitely make a case for the price being right to back Texas this evening.

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Bruce MarshallFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Atlanta Braves at Los Angeles DodgersFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: Atlanta BravesFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Although Braves starter Tim Hudson has not had a stellar campaign, he tossed perhaps his best game of the season in his last outing when limiting the Nats to 3 hits and 0 ER in 7 IP of last Saturday's 2-1 win. And Hudson has a pretty good career mark (6-3) against the Blue. But let's not kid ourselves, because the real reason we like Atlanta so much is a chance to go against the struggling Zack Greinke, who has been laboring since his return from the DL and shelled in recent starts, allowing 28 hits and 7 walks in 13 1/3 IP over his last three starts with an 8.77 ERA. The Dodgers' mini-revival was also slowed last night when the Padres burst the LA balloon with Clayton Kershaw on the mound in a 6-2 romp. Play Braves

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Stephen NoverFOR  FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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NY Mets +165FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The way they are hitting the Nationals don't deserve to be this kind of favorite against any team.
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Washington is 6-11 in its last 17 games to fall under .500 for the season. The Nationals are averaging less than two runs per game in their last six games. Washington is batting .197 during this six-game span.
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Jayson Werth is back, but he's rusty. Bryce Harper is out. It's obvious the Nationals' offense goes way down when Harper isn't in the lineup.
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Mets starter Shaun Marcum is getting healthier. Health, not talent, is what has held Marcum back. He is 1-0 lifetime against the Nationals with a 2.77 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 13 innings. Marcum is in line to pitch his strongest game of the season, especially facing a struggling, pressing offense.
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The Nationals need a big performance from lefty Gio Gonzalez. The last time Gonzalez recorded a win was May 5. The Mets are a respectable 9-11 against lefties and have won four of the past five times they've been road 'dogs, including a confidence-boosting 10-1 victory against Washington last night.
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Gonzalez has walked 10 batters during his past four starts and his concentration may be off as his name surfaced in a report involving an investigation about performance-enhancing drugs.

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Don Best ConsensusFOR  FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Texas Rangers at Boston Red SoxFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: Texas RangersFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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We've got a road underdog for you in Thursday's Free Play of the Day: Texas Rangers. The Rangers are 10-3 in their last 13 Thursday games and 39-15 in Derek Holland's last 54 starts. They also hold a 10-4 record in their last 14 meetings in Boston. Holland is 2-0 in his last 3 starts with a 2.45 ERA & 1.47 WHIP, while Boston's LHP Jon Lester is 0-2 in his last 3 starts with a 6.05 ERA and 1.60 WHIP. Play the Rangers.

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Ben BurnsFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Minnesota vs. Kansas CityFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: Kansas CityFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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After a tough loss with his "under" play (0-0 in the 14th!) Ben Burns bounced back with a win on the Royals last night. That brought him to 17-2 his last 19 on the diamond, 27-7 his last 34.
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Ben thinks the Royals have a solid shot at another victory this evening. Check it out.
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KC snapped an extended home losing streak last night, the worst in franchise history. Now, with the monkey off their back and facing a team which they tend to play well against, I expect the Royals to carry the momentum into this evening's game.
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KC's Billy Butler, who had three hits and drove in a run, noted: "...Hopefully this gets us going, gives us a little momentum boost."
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With yesterday's victory, the Royals are 7-2 against the Twins, 4-1 here at home.
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Admittedly, Davis has been pretty inconsistent. And that's putting it nicely. He gave up six runs at Texas last time out. While it wasn't enough to prevent the runs, he did have eight K's vs 0 walks in that game. In other words, he had both good stuff and good control.
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Davis delivered a "quality start" the last time he was here at home. In that game, he limited the Angels to three runs through 6 1/3 innings.
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Davis is 3-0 (team is 5-1) in six start vs. the Twins. He threw five shutout innings in his lone 2013 start against them, en route to a 3-0 victory. Over his last five appearances vs. Minnesota, four of them starts, Davis has a 2.16 ERA.
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Perhaps the best case one can make for Davis is that he's likely to get some run support here, as his opponent has been brutal.
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In 11 starts, Pelfrey is 3-6 (team is 3-8) with a 6.63 ERA and 1.773 WHIP. That ERA climbs to 7.71 in his five road starts, four of which resulted in Minnesota losses.
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Pelfrey, who just hasn't looked the same since returning from Tommy John surgery, faced the Royals here back on 4/9 and he lasted just two innings, allowing six runs. Take a look at KC.

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Will RogersFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Arizona vs. St. LouisFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: St. LouisFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The Cardinals have lost the last two games of this four-game set, at home mind you, to Arizona.  But I see them earning a split Thursday night behind Shelby Miller.  So far, St. Louis has suffered only one three-game losing streak all season & it's already June!
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Here are my keys to the game:FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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1.  Miller - The Cards starter is putting together a great 2013, going 6-3 in 11 starts (8-3 TSR) with a 1.82 ERA and 0.981 WHIP.  He is coming off a strong showing on the mound last Saturday, throwing seven scoreless innings in what was a day-night doubleheader sweep of the Giants. That improved Miller's home ERA to 0.79 in five starts, which have seen the team go 4-1 as he hasn't allowed a run at Busch Stadium in 21 2/3 innings.  Overall, his ERA is the lowest in the entire National League while opponents are batting just .203 against him.
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2.  St. Louis vs. a Righty - The last two games have seen the Cardinals matched up against a pair of southpaw starters, Tyler Skaggs and Wade Miley.  Both resulted in losses as the Cards are now just 7-6 vs. lefties this year.  But against righties, they are 31-13! Tonight, they face Ian Kennedy, who has a pedestrian at best 4.74 ERA in 11 starts. In five career starts vs. St. Louis, Kennedy's ERA is 7.14.
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3. X-Factor - St. Louis is 17-4 off a loss this season.

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SPORTS WAGERSFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Texas +121 over BOSTONFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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John Lester is proving that his 4.82 ERA and 1.38 WHIP from 2012 were flukes. His skills seem to be back to the levels that made him a consistent winner and one of the most reliable starters in the game a few years ago. The Red Sox have now won nine of Lester's 12 starts. He has a 6-2 record overall to go along with a 3.53 ERA but there are warning signs galore and now is the time to sell high on this overrated lefty. The first warning sign is Lester's declining 7.2% swinging strike rate does not support his strikeout rate of 65 K's in 79 frames. Lester is also starting to walk a few too many batters (8 BB over his past 19 IP), which is never a good sign. Over his last three starts, including one against the pathetic hitting White Sox in which he allowed five runs, Lester has been tagged for 13 earned runs in 19 innings. We could certainly be looking at a tired arm here and now Lester will face a tough Texas lineup that has won 12 of 18 games against southpaws this season.
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By contrast, the Red Sox have been below average versus left-handed pitching this season, hitting only .236 with a .693 OPS and now they'll face one of the best in the game. Derek Holland has made six career starts against the Red Sox, going 5-1 with a 2.41 ERA and 0.95 WHIP in 41 IP. Holland's 2.31 ERA in May came with full skill support and it's even more impressive when you consider the venue in which he pitches half his games in. Holland has 72 K's and just 18 walks issued in 74 innings of work this year. Unlike Lester, who is getting weaker, Holland is getting better as the season progresses. With an average fastball velocity of 93.9 mph and an elite 12.0% swinging strike rate in May, up from 11.2% in April, Holland has the goods to sustain his masterful May and success against these Red Sox. We're not so sure about Lester.
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COLORADO -1½ +138 over San DiegoFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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The Rockies opened as a -156 favorite here. That looks like a clear enticement into trying to get bettors into taking the bait on the Padres. After all, San Diego just beat Clayton Kershaw last night in L.A. and Andrew Cashner has put up better numbers than Jhoulys Chacin. The Rockies are better at home and deserved to be favored, but by this much? The Padres have won four of Cashner's last five starts and over that stretch, covering 33 innings, Cashner has walked just five batters and he has not issued a single walk in his last two starts, However, Cashner has pitched more innings this season (57) than any time before at this level. Over the past three years, Cashner has spent 209 days on the DL while never throwing more than 54 innings in a season. He's been switched from starter to reliever to starter and he now enters unchartered territory in terms of innings worked at this level with some serious warning signs. Cashner has surrendered six bombs over his last four starts and that includes three in Seattle in his last start. He's also striking out less batters. Taking on the Rockies at Coors Field is the worst matchup in baseball for opposing pitchers, where they must face a potent offense in an extremely hitting friendly environment (+43% runs scored). Granted, it is a very small sample size, but the Rockies have knocked Cashner around in 8.2 career innings, where he has given up 20 hits, 5 BB, and 14 ER. Based on this high line, oddsmakers are calling for Cashner to be roughed up again and based on his pedigree, current form and past history here, we couldn't agree more.
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With a 3-3 record in 10 starts, a 4.26 ERA and 1.27 WHIP, Jhouly's Chacin is not going to garner much attention here but this is a pitcher that should be on your radar because he's coming on big time. The surface stats don't say so but under the hood, Chacin has an elite 58% groundball rate over his last four starts. His ERA over that span is an unappealing 6.07 but it's all because of a very unfortunate 57% strand rate, Chacin's xERA over his last four starts is 3.85 and that's actually very impressive when you consider that three of those four starts were at Coors Field. Chacin has dominated in the past, especially against righties and at the young age of 25 and appearing to be fully recovered from some health issues over the past couple of years, Chacin is a prime breakout candidate. The surface stats on both these pitchers are misleading, with Chacin being much better than the stats suggest and Cashner being much worse. That sets this one up very nicely for the Rockies to tee off and we're on it.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, June 6

Ray MonohanFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Oakland Athletics vs. Chicago White SoxFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Play: Oakland AthleticsFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Oakland -128 Oakland is red hot right now and tied for the most wins in the American League. Alternately the White Sox are sputtering as their usually powerful offense has been pretty meek all season long. Oakland is 3-0 vs. Chicago this season and shut out the Sox in two of those three contests. The one game they were able to get on th board was a game started by A's starter Dan Straily but he is proving more and more like he belongs in the Majors after a great season in the minors last year. He has given up just 2ER in his last 19 innings including that start against Chicago. Play the hot hand. G

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Sean MurphyFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Tampa Bay vs. DetroitFREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: Tampa Bay +1.5FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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This is one of those 'plug your nose and bet it' type of plays.
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Rays starter Roberto Hernandez (formerly Fausto Carmona) isn't going to get much love from the majority of bettors, and that's fine with us.
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The fact is, the Rays have been winning with the veteran right-hander on the hill, and he's coming off his best start of the season, needing only 92 pitches to come one out shy of a complete game victory in Miami.
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The Tigers are most definitely not the Marlins and represent a major step up in class today. But let's face it, Detroit isn't exactly locked in at the dish right now. Sure, the Tigers have scored exactly 10 runs twice in their last four games, but they've put up a grand total of two runs in the other two contests over that stretch and have been held to three runs or less in five of their last eight overall.
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Detroit starter Max Scherzer remains undefeated at a perfect 7-0 on the season but perhaps he's been a little lucky on the way to that spotless record. Note that he's recorded an ERA north of five here at home this season. The Tigers have only managed to split his last four starts overall.
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The Rays have gone 3-1 all-time against Scherzer, including a dominating 8-0 victory in their lone try against him here at Comerica Park.
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I'll grab the insurance run in this spot, only because I'm expecting a tightly-contested game all the way and out of respect for a Tigers club that admittedly owns a considerable home field advantage - particularly in day games.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, June 6

Dave EsslerFOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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Oakland / Chicago Over 8FOR FREE SERVICE PLAYS VISIT THESPREAD.COM
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I can't hesitate and second guess too much here. Obviously the White Sox bullpen was all used up last night. They used every single bullpen arm, four of them now have pitched consecutive days. Oakland's bullpen has been seriously suspect lately as well. As far as starters, Quintana hasn't lasted past the 7th inning since the beginning of April, and Straily on the road has simply been terrible. The weather pattern is conducive, with the wind blowing more or less out to right, so I will make the play. I am considering taking both Arizona and the Mets at + money because they've both got every shot to win. We'll see what happens.

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MLB Predictions

Oakland Athletics -129

This is going to be quick as I've got to leave the house in a few minutes, but the A's are 36-25 on the season and 18-15 on the road compared to the White Sox who are just 25-32 on the year and 13-11 at home. Oakland is coming off a 6-1 afternoon victory yesterday and they are 5-1 in their last 6 games. The White Sox played a long and draining extra innings game yesterday in Seattle winning 7-5. That win broke an 8 game losing streak for Chicago. Dan Straily is on the mound for Oakland and he is 3-2 with a 4.60 ERA overall and 2-0 with a 0.95 ERA in his last 3 starts. Jose Quintana is 3-2 with a 3.86 ERA on the year, and lasted 5.1 innings giving up 10 hits against the A's last week. These two pitchers met with Oakland winning 4-3. They also swept that series vs the White Sox last week. The A's are 17-5 in their last 22 overall and 7-2 in Straily's last 9 starts. The White Sox are 1-8 in their last 9 overall and 1-5 in their last 6 as a home underdog. Take the hot bats of Oakland over the struggling White Sox tonight.

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