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MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

Saturday MLB Thoughts/Winners/Projections
By Dave Essler

Phillies at Mets: My inclination was to take the Mets, but Wheeler's great outing was against the Giants, the team that traded him, and his other good outing was against Atlanta who hadn't seen him and is streaky anyways. Have to lean Phillies here at first look. Although, the Mets obviously know him as well as anyone, but he was hit pretty hard by them lat month, so perhaps a measure of revenge. Coin flip and would follow money there.

Pirates-Reds: I said what I meant when I swore off betting on or against the Reds. No chance of laying -140 anyway and think the Pirates actually have a better back end. Well, I know they do. Pirates RL here.

Washington-Dodgers: We've had great success earlier in the season, but he seems to have rounded back into form. The Dodgers are under .500 against LHP and on the road, and Gio has handled them well with limited exposure. Collectively the Nationals have hit Grienke well, although Suzuki and Span have the Lions' share of the at bats. Still, I;d have to take the Nationals here.

Miami-Milwaukee: I just usually have a hard time backing Gallardo, because when he's bad he's really bad. In this case, he shut down the Fish on four hits last month, so perhaps the Fish get their revenge. I think that was also before Stanton came back and Pierre may have even been out, too. Very possible we could play the Fish RL. Have not looked at the weather, but with the roof open here there could be some runs scored.

Cardinals-Padres: I know that the Cardinals are clearly the better team, but with Volquez's capabilities here and RL cost of only +120 on the Padres, that's what I'd do. Lynn is simply not THAT dominant every time out.

Cubs-Rockies: Still trying to grasp the Cubs meltdown last Sunday night, and with Villenueva pitching that almost assuredly will bring the Chicago bullpen into play sooner rather than later. Nicasio at home is nothing to brag about (most Colorado pitchers aren't) and I'd have loved to take the over, but at 9.5 it does give me pause. No chance of laying 150, however, so maybe Cubs RL, because with a total that high it might be affordable.

Arizona-San Francisco: My instinct here tells me that it might be time to fade Cain again, especially since it's been three weeks since he threw an actual game. But, since Miley has regressed and the Giants fare well against him, I'll look at the over in that one, perhaps, but think the Giants are the right side.

Rays at Jays: How can Buerhle only be -110 at home to a flyball pitcher like Hellickson against a free swinging team in Toronto, in a day game, when the roof should be wide open. Looks like el-trapo to me. Especially when Hellickson just one-hit Toronto not long ago. Yes, he (Buerhle) was lit up by the Orioles right before the break, but the old man in much better in the Rogers Centre than not. Toronto or nothing.

Yankees-Boston: We keep waiting for the Lackey implosion at some point. The ONE thing that concerns me here is that south breeze blowing out to right field here, and clearly both lineups will be stacked with lefties, IMO. That would have concerned me if Lackey wasn't holding lefties to a .204 average. I know what Kuroda CAN do, and because of that I actually think this total might be high even for Fenway and the conditions.

Detroit at Kansas City: Totally not happening that I lay -160 on the road and I'd have said that even if Verlander weren't hit hard last time out. Guthrie can be solid and the Royals have a bullpen advantage, so Royals RL or moving on.

Cleveland at Minnesota: I don't care who has the better lineup here, I just don't think Cory Kluber is a -130 pitcher on the road. In fact, he has been terrible on the road. Minnesota or pass. At nine I can perhaps make a reasonable case for the over here, but the weather isn't overly warm and little breeze to help. We'll see what happens on Friday.

Seattle-Houston: I really wanted to take Norris on Friday, but couldn't quite get past the Mariners recent offensive output. I do like Bedard in certain situations, and this could be one of them. Iwakuma has given up 11 HR's in his last five starts, and four of those were in pitcher-friendly Seattle. Since Houston has already seen him this season, and was shut down by him, I have to think Houston and/or over here.

Baltimore-Texas: For a second I thought that was RANDY Wolf Since the Orioles haven't seen ROSS Wolf, and Ross is not a starter, hence on a pitch count, this game is totally predicated on how much bullpen each team uses on Friday. Gonzalez JUST shut down the Rangers in Baltimore right before the break, and that was essentially the first time they'd seen him. Might consider over in this one, but detest 9.5. Again, see Friday.

Oakland-LA Angels: Looks like Peggy Wilson got his groove back. HOWEVER, two of those three good starts were against weak teams, and in the win against Boston he did give up ten hits. That's enough to tell me to take the A's or pass here. But, because of the pitchers and the park, that total of only 8 might be an over play.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

MLB: Streaks, Tips, Notes

Los Angeles Dodgers at Washington Nationals

A superb pitching duel is on tap in the nation’s capital as Zack Greinke of the Los Angeles Dodgers matches pitches with the Washington Nationals’ Gio Gonzales. Greinke with a 8-2 record, 3.49 ERA heads to the bump off a complete game shutout in a 1-0 victory over Colorado marking the hurler's fifth straight victory. Nationals southpaw Gio Gonzalez 7-3 with 3.03 ERA on the campaign was last seen tossing seven strong innings of 1 run-ball in a victory over Philadelphia marking the port-sider's 4th win in five trips to the mound with Washington 5-0 over the span. From a team perspective, Dodgers have momentum of an 18-5 stretch platting 4.7 runs/game including 10-2 on the road crossing a whopping 6.5 runs/contest. Meanwhile, Nationals' suffering through a rough spot are just 2-6 last eight on the diamond scoring a puny 2.6 runs/game. Nats' southpaw presents a formidable challenge to LA who are 3-11 on the road vs a left-handed starter but Dodgers' offense providing Greinke with 7.6 runs/game the past three rules the day. Stick with underdog Dodgers knowing Nats' have only given Gonzalez 3.6 runs of support his past three and that Dodgers are ridding a 5-2 stretch vs a southpaw starter, 3-0 streak this season hooking Grienke against a lefty.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati: Preview & Pick

Staying with a good thing is a mantra in baseball betting that never gets old, and such is the case this afternoon as the Cincinnati Reds host the Pittsburgh Pirates in action at Great American Ballpark.

Primarily thanks to the presence of its starting pitcher this afternoon, Cincinnati is a -147 home favorite, according to the current betting odds at Bovada, with a run total of 8.

Mat Latos will go to the hill for the Reds, sporting an 8-3 mark on the season with a 3.53 ERA. Over the past two months, Latos has started at home just four times, putting together a 3-1 record and 3.69 ERA.

The Pirates will counter with righthander A.J. Burnett, who has 4-6 record on the year and 3.06 ERA. During that same two-month stretch, Burnett spent time on the disabled list and had a 1-2 road mark with a 3.91 ERA.

Since arriving in Cincinnati prior to the 2012 season, Latos has enjoyed hurling at Great American Ballpark, with the Reds winning 75 percent of the time he starts—21 of 28 occasions.

In addition, the Reds are 8-1 when that Latos start comes during a daytime clash, and is 8-2 at home when Latos is making a start after the team lost in his previous outing.

That last baseball betting trend is not unique to Latos: this year, the Reds are 14-5 when they have a starter whose last start resulted in a Cincy loss, and 5-1 when that game is played during the daylight hours.

While the odds might be a bit high for a less adventurous bettor, they should provide comfort for those who have done their baseball betting homework: the Reds are 9-1 as a home favorite of between -140 and -160 in 2013.

The total of 8 is also a positive omen times two for Cincinnati, since the team is 8-4 this year when the game has that designated run total, while the Pirates are a weak 2-6.

Since Latos arrived, a run total of 8 with him starting has turned into six wins in nine occasions, including six of the last seven.

Finally, Pittsburgh is just 3-8 in Burnett’s last 11 road starts, and is also saddled with the same mark when he starts as an underdog, both home and away. When that game is away from PNC Park, the Pirates are just 2-5.

While Pittsburgh shows no sign of collapsing in the heat of a pennant race, for this day at least, they have too many baseball betting nuggets stacked against them to consider taking them. Therefore, the free MLB pick is

Play Cincinnati -147

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Saturday FOX Tips
By Kevin Rogers

The All-Star break is finally behind us following a four-day hiatus for baseball bettors. The Saturday FOX card reverts back to afternoon action, with a three-pack of entertaining contests. Five of the six teams getting showcased on FOX sit above .500 and are all teams threatening to qualify for the postseason. We'll begin at Fenway Park with the league's most intense rivalry brewing between a pair of AL East foes.

Yankees at Red Sox

Amazingly, New York started the second half in fourth-place inside its division, while finding out that shortstop Derek Jeter will be headed back to the 15-day disabled list with a quad injury. Even though the Bombers are a few days away from the return of Alex Rodriguez to the lineup, the Yanks will depend on the right arm of Hiroki Kuroda to pick up a road victory.

Kuroda (8-6, 2.65 ERA) hasn't allowed a single run in each of his last two trips to the mound, including five scoreless innings in a 2-0 victory over the Twins last Friday as a $1.70 home favorite. The right-hander has turned into one of the better 'under' pitchers this season, cashing the 'under' in eight of his last nine starts, including each of his past four away from the Bronx.

The Red Sox send out John Lackey (7-6, 2.78 ERA), who has rebounded after a slow start by putting together six consecutive quality outings. The former Angels’ righty grabbed a road victory in his previous start at Oakland, tossing seven strong innings, while allowing three hits and two earned runs in a 4-2 triumph.

Boston is riding a healthy ‘under’ run in Lackey’s appearance, posting an 8-1 mark to the ‘under’ since late May. Boston owns a 4-2 record against New York this season, with all six games being played in the Bronx. Last season, the Yankees took seven of nine meetings at Fenway Park, while the Sox compiled a 1-5 record as a home favorite.

Pirates at Reds

The two clubs chasing the Cardinals atop the NL Central continue their set at Great American Ballpark. Pittsburgh holds the upper-hand over Cincinnati early in the season series by capturing six of the first 10 matchups, while splitting a four-game series in the Queen City last month.

A.J. Burnett (4-6, 3.06 ERA) makes his third start since coming off the disabled list in late June, as the Pirates' right-hander has won just once in his last nine outings. Pittsburgh is 2-7 in this span, as Burnett has lost three of his previous four starts on the road, including in division matchups against the Cubs and Brewers. Burnett received a no-decision the last time he faced the Reds at PNC Park in April, as the Pirates staved off Cincinnati, 6-5 as short home favorites.

The Reds closed the first half by alternating wins and losses in each of their final six games, including losing series to Milwaukee and Seattle. Cincinnati tries to get on track with Mat Latos (8-3, 3.52 ERA) toeing the rubber, as the tall righty has won only two of his previous six starts. One of those defeats came as a substantial home favorite against the Pirates in June, falling 4-0 in spite of allowing just three hits in five innings of work. Cincinnati has won six of Latos' eight starts at Great American Ballpark, but the Reds are 0-3 in his three outings against Pittsburgh.

Braves at White Sox

It's a battle of first and last-place clubs on the South Side of Chicago, as the Sox get their veteran ace back on the hill. Former Cy Young Award winner Jake Peavy makes his first start since early June when the right-hander suffered a rib injury at Seattle. Peavy (6-4, 4.30 ERA) allowed six earned runs in each of his last two outings before getting hurt at Safeco Field, as he lasted just 2.1 innings in a 7-4 defeat to the Mariners as a $1.40 underdog.

The White Sox have won three of Peavy's four home starts this season, while delivering quality outings each time at U.S. Cellular Field. After sweeping Miami in late May, Chicago has dropped seven of its past 10 interleague contests, including a 1-3 home mark against the Cubs and Mets.

Chicago is hitting just .226 against left-handed pitching this season, as southpaw Paul Maholm takes the mound for the Braves. Maholm (9-8, 3.98 ERA) ended the first half with consecutive road defeats at Philadelphia and Miami, giving up a total of nine runs in those losses. The Braves have cashed the 'over' in each of Maholm's last four road contests, while losing to the White Sox last season as a member of the Cubs, 6-0.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

MLB Odds and Picks - Greinke, Gonzalez set to square off
By: The Linemakers

Zack Greinke is on absolute tear right now, having won each of his past five starts while allowing hitters to bat only .208 over that streak. He's right in line with the rest of the Dodgers that have started to look like a World Series quality team over the last month. Today, Gio Gonzalez and the Nationals are -130 favorites over the Dodgers. Gonzalez has been on his own hot streak of late, winning each his past four starts.

We think the pitching is fairly equal, which should make the game more a pick 'em, but the biggest selling point in buying the Dodgers to win tonight is current form. The Dodgers are hot, having fun and chasing a division title. The Nationals, on the other hand, have lost six of their past eight games and 13 of their last 18 meetings with the Dodgers.

While they have almost the exact same record, the Nationals are currently failing their own expectations. We like Greinke to get his 100th career victory tonight.

Reds 2012 Deja Vu?

Last season the Reds won 19 of 22 games coming out of the All-Star break to take control on the NL Central. Last night they made good on their first time out by beating the team right above them in the standings, the Pittsburgh Pirates.

We think the Reds will come on strong over the next two months, but not necessarily tonight. The Reds have not been hitting the ball well lately, scoring three runs or less in eight of their past 16 games.

The other big factor is Mat Latos starting for the Reds. If this were '12, you'd have to be all over Latos considering the Bucs had never beaten him in six tries. But the tables have turned in '13. Pittsburgh has won all three games started by Latos this season.

This is a big game for Pirates starter A.J. Burnett because one of the few veterans on the team has to step up soon and carry this team to avoid collapses like the past two seasons. Burnett's success in the postseason with the Marlins and Yankees could go a long way in getting the Pirates over the hump. It starts tonight for him. Look for a low-scoring game, as well.

Rays still on fire

The Rays are on a roll right now, having picked up right where they left off heading into the All-Star break. They are the hottest team in baseball and go for their 16th win in 18 games today at Toronto. Tampa is a short underdog (-102) to Toronto's Mark Buehrle and should be able to pull another win out.

Saturday selections:

Dodgers (Greinke) +125 at Nationals

Pirates (Burnett) +131 at Reds

Phillies (Hamels) -136 at Mets

Rays (Hellickson) -102 at Blue Jays

Yankees (Kuroda) +145 at Red Sox

Mariners (Iwakuma) -131 at Astros

Second-half record: 2-2 (+45)

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

Saturday's National League Betting Cheat Sheet and Tips

Philadelphia Phillies at New York Mets (+128, 7.5)

Cold pitching stat: Phillies starter Cole Hamels is 6-11 with a 4.28 ERA in 23 career starts versus the Mets.

Cold batting stat: Mets C John Buck is 2-for-25 (.080) in his career versus Hamels.

Weather: Temperatures in the high-90s and partly cloudy skies. Wind will blow out to right field at 14 mph.

Key betting note: The Mets are 1-11 in their last 12 Saturday games.

Pittsburgh Pirates at Cincinnati Reds (-140, 8)

Cold pitching stat: Pirates ace A.J. Burnett is 5-5 with a 4.09 ERA in 13 starts against the Reds.

Hot batting stat: Reds 2B Brandon Phillips is 9-for-11 with 21 RBIs while batting with the bases loaded this season.

Weather: A 50 percent chance of thunderstorms is in the forecast for gametime. Temperatures in the high-80s with wind blowing out to left field at 11 mph.

Key betting note: The Reds are 6-0 in starting pitcher Mat Latos' last six Saturday starts.

Los Angeles Dodgers at Washington Nationals (-134, 7.5)

Hot pitching stat: Dodgers starter Zack Greinke improved to 3-0 in his career versus Washington after yielding one run on five hits in 5 1/3 innings in a 3-1 victory on May 15.

Hot batting stat: Los Angeles SS Hanley Ramirez hit safely in 14 of his last 17 games after belting a two-run homer Friday.

Weather: Temperatures in the mid-90s and a 30 percent chance of thunderstorms. Wind will blow out to right field at 8 mph.

Key betting note: The Nationals are 7-0 in SP Gio Gonzalez's last seven starts vs. National League West.

Miami Marlins at Milwaukee Brewers (-162, 8.5)

Hot pitching stat: Milwaukee’s three scoreless innings in the series opener lowered its bullpen ERA to 2.94 – the third-best mark in the majors.

Hot batting stat: Marlins SS Adeiny Hechavarria had three hits Friday and is 24-for-54 in 14 games this month.

Weather: Temperatures in the low-70s with mostly sunny skies. Wind will blow from left field to right field at 12 mph.

Key betting note: The over is 10-1-2 in Brewers SP Yovani Gallardo's last 13 starts as a favorite.

San Diego Padres at St. Louis Cardinals (-195, 8.5)

Cold pitching stat: Cards starter Lance Lynn is 1-3 with a 6.12 ERA in his last four starts.

Hot batting stat: St. Louis C Yadier Molina leads the NL in hitting with a .340 average - one of four Cardinals in the top 10.

Weather: Temperatures in the low-90s with partly cloudy skies. Wind will blow in from center field at 4 mph.

Key betting note: The Padres are 1-10 in their last 11 games as a road underdog.

Chicago Cubs at Colorado Rockies (-150, 10)

Cold pitching stat: Cubs pitcher Carlos Villanueva is 0-2 with a 10.71 ERA in 12 games (one start) against Colorado.

Hot batting stat: Chicago has hit a National League-best 18 home runs in July.

Weather: Mostly sunny skies with temperatures in the low-80s. Wind will blow in from right field at 6 mph.

Key betting note: The Cubs are 2-10 in the last 12 meetings in Colorado.

Arizona Diamondbacks at San Francisco Giants (-135, 7)

Hot pitching stat: Giants closer Sergio Romo has a 29-game scoreless streak against the Diamondbacks consisting of 21 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings.

Hot batting stat: San Francisco 1B Brandon Belt is 14-for-34 with four home runs and 10 RBIs in 10 games against the Diamondbacks this season.

Weather: Temperatures in the low-60s and sunny skies. Wind will blow out to center field at 11 mph.

Key betting note: The Giants are 8-2 in starter Matt Cain's last 10 home starts vs. Diamondbacks.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Saturday, July 20

Saturday's American League Betting Cheat Sheet and Tips

Tampa Bay Rays at Toronto Blue Jays (-108, 9)

Hot pitching stat: Rays starter Jeremy Hellickson is 4-2 with a 2.67 ERA in nine career starts against Toronto - including a seven-inning victory last month in which he held the Blue Jays to one hit and four walks.

Hot batting stat: Tampa Bay OF Wil Myers has hit two of his four major-league home runs against Toronto, including a solo blast Friday.

Weather: Temperatures in the low-80s and sunny skies. Wind will blow in from left field at 15 mph.

Key betting note: The under is 5-1 in the last six meetings.

New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox (-149, 9)

Hot pitching stat: Yanks hurler Hiroki Kuroda has not allowed a run in 12 total innings over his last two starts and has surrendered two or fewer earned runs in five of his last six turns.

Cold batting stat: Yanks DH Travis Hafner is 6-for-31 (.194) in his career against Sox starter John Lackey.

Weather: There is a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms in the forecast. Temperatures will be in the mid-90s and wind will blow out to right field at 14 mph.

Key betting note: The Red Sox are 4-1 in Lackey's last five starts vs. Yankees.

Detroit Tigers at Kansas City Royals (+161, 8.5)

Hot pitching stat: Tigers starter Justin Verlander is 15-2 with a 2.56 ERA in 25 career starts against Kansas City.

Hot batting stat: Royals DH Billy Butler is 24-for-57 lifetime against Verlander.

Weather: Temperatures will be in the mid-90s with partly cloudy skies. Wind will blow from right field to left field at 7 mph.

Key betting note: The under is 7-3 in Verlander's last 10 starts vs. Royals.

Seattle Mariners at Houston Astros (+122, 8)

Cold pitching stat: Astros lefty Erik Bedard has allowed at least three runs in each of his last four outings after giving up two or fewer in seven of his previous eight turns.

Hot batting stat: Seattle has hit a major league-high 41 home runs since June 20.

Weather: Temperatures in the low-90s and partly cloudy skies. Wind will blow out to center field at 8 mph.

Key betting note: The under is 5-1 in umpire Bill Miller's last six games behind home plate.

Cleveland Indians at Minnesota Twins (+115, 9)

Cold pitching stat: Twins starter Kevin Correia is winless in his last four starts and has issued 13 walks in 22 1/3 innings over that span.

Hot batting stat: Twins C Joe Mauer has hit safely in eight straight games.

Weather: Temperatures in the high-70s and mostly sunny skies. Wind will blow from left field to right field at 7 mph.

Key betting note: The Indians are 0-4 in the last four meetings in Minnesota.

Baltimore Orioles at Texas Rangers (-113, 9.5)

Hot pitching stat: O's starter Miguel Gonzalez handcuffed the Rangers over 6 2/3 strong innings to pick up the win in Baltimore's 3-1 triumph on July 11.

Cold batting stat: The Rangers went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position in Friday's loss.

Weather: Temperatures in the mid-80s and partly cloudy skies. Wind will blow in from right field at 7 mph.

Key betting note: The Orioles are 1-6 in Gonzalez's last seven road starts.

Oakland A's at Los Angeles Angels (-137, 8)

Hot pitching stat: A's starter Dan Straily has allowed two runs or fewer in seven of his last nine starts.

Cold batting stat: A's OF Coco Crisp is hitting just .167 (4-for-24) in his career versus Angels starter C.J. Wilson.

Weather: Temperatures in the mid-70s with mostly sunny skies. Wind will blow out to right field at 6 mph.

Key betting note: The over is 8-2-1 in Straily's last 11 starts vs. American League West.


Atlanta Braves at Chicago White Sox (-109, 8.5)

Hot pitching stat: White Sox starter Jake Peavy is 8-4 with a 2.63 ERA in 13 interleague games with Chicago.

Hot batting stat: Atlanta designated hitters are batting .300 with three home runs and seven RBIs in eight interleague games this season.

Weather: Temperatures in the mid-80s with sunny skies. Wind will blow from left field to right field at 11 mph.

Key betting note: The White Sox are 5-1 in Peavy's last six starts as a home favorite.

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