Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Brad Diamond

Toronto vs. Seattle
Play: Under 6½

Toronto travels a long distance to Seattle for a night game after 19 innings of work against Detroit winning 6-5. Toronto uses RHP Hutchinson who is coming off a super 8-2/3 innings of work allowing one earned run vs. the first place Orioles. The Mariners won 4-2 at home vs. the ChiSox on Sunday.   Here Seattle will counter with “King Felix” Hernandez who has been nothing short of miraculous this season.  In fact, the Mariners are 9-1-1 UNDER L11 times to the bump with Hernandez.

Toronto has been lacking run support vs. the ALW this season at 20-8 UNDER.  As an underdog in this money line position the Blue Jays are on a PERFECT 7-0 UNDER run.  Whereas, the Mariners are 22-5-1 UNDER when playing into a 6 ½ board total. With Hernandez off 5 days of rest our angle carries more weight  with a super 5-0-1 UNDER L6 starts.  Finally, Seattle is 8-0 UNDER after their opponent allowed 5 or more runs in their last game.  No doubt the Blue Jays should be flat this evening, despite their current ranking in the ALE.  Since Seattle has been a natural UNDER play with “King Felix” I’ll take a ticket on the UNDER.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Jack Jones

Tampa Bay Rays -115

The Tampa Bay Rays (57-60) are still alive in the AL Wild Card race.  They know they need to really turn it on here over the last few months if they want to make the postseason.  They are currently 6.5 games out of first-place, so every game essentially feels like a must-win.

They have won three of their last four and now send underrated starter Drew Smyly to the mound.  The left-hander has posted a 4.25 ERA over 19 starts this season.  Smyly is also 1-1 with a 3.78 ERA in three career starts against Texas.  In his lone start against the Rangers this season, he didn't allow an earned run and got the win in an 8-2 road victory on June 24.

Colby Lewis has been one of the worst starters in all of baseball this season.  He has gone 8-8 with a 5.50 ERA and 1.653 WHIP in 20 starts this year.  Lewis has been at his worst at home, going 2-5 with a 7.62 ERA and 1.770 WHIP in 10 starts.  He did throw a shutout in his last start, but it's hard to come back mentally and physically from a performance like that.  He threw 110 pitches in that game as well.

Texas is 3-17 (-13.1 Units) against the money line as a home underdog of +100 or higher this season.  The Rays are 10-1 in their last 11 games as a road favorite.  Tampa Bay is 24-11 in its last 35 games overall, and 19-7 in its last 26 road games.  The Rangers are 3-13 in their last 16 home games vs. a left-handed starter.  Texas is 15-41 in its last 56 games overall.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Steve Janus

Chicago Cubs +102

This is a great price to back the Cubs at home with Jake Arrieta on the mound. Arrieta has been lights out when he takes the rubber at Wrigley Field, as he's got a sensational 1.85 ERA and 0.916 WHIP over 7 starts. He will be opposed by Yovani Gallardo, who is coming off a rough start at home against the Giants. Gallardo was rocked for 4 runs on 9 hits and 4 walks over just 4 innings of work. It was the 4th time in his last 7 starts that he's allowed 4+ earned runs.

Key Trends/System - Milwaukee is 1-5 in their last 6 road games against a right-handed starter and 1-7 in Gallardo's last 8 starts overall. The Cubs are 5-1 in their last 6 during game 1 of a series, 11-2 in Arrieta's last 13 starts following a team loss and 4-1 in his last 5 starts as a home underdog. Add it up and that's a 32-6 (84%) system telling us to BET THE CUBS +102!

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Dave Price

Milwaukee Brewers -104

The Brewers have owned the Cubs, going 38-16 in the last 54 meetings, and I expect them to continue their dominance behind Gallardo, who is 8-3 with an ERA of 3.12 in 17 career starts versus the Cubs.  The Brewers are 12-5 in these starts, including 4-0 in his last four at Wrigley Field.  He has a 2.70 ERA over his last nine starts versus Chicago and a 1.86 ERA over his last six at the Friendly Confines.  Arrieta is having a good season but was completely rocked last time out in Colorado, giving up nine runs on 13 hits in five innings.  The Cubs are 0-2 in his two home starts versus Milwaukee.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Tony Stoffo

Mets vs. Phillies
Play: Over 8

With Jon Niese getting the start here against David Buchanan sure sets up as a much higher scoring affair here and a solid release on the over in this spot todat between the Mets and Phillies. Over is 14-2 in the Phillies last 16 games following a win. Over is 45-16-3 in the last 64 meetings. Over is 17-9 last 26 Philadelphia games.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Jeffery James

Pittsburgh Pirates +100

The Tigers are in a very bad spot here after coming off of a 19 inning loss yesterday in Toronto. They are really struggling lately and now only have a half game lead in the division. Verlander has been nowhere near his Cy Young self from a couple of years ago. Look for the Pirates with Locke to take advantage and get this win here.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Spartan

Oakland A's at Kansas City Royals
Play: Kansas City Royals

The Royals are hot as hell right now and closing the gap on the Tigers. The fans and sports talk radio hosts are beside themselves. I for one am taking a wait and see attitude. This team has not been in the post season since the mid 80′s. I hope they make it, their fans deserve it. I do like them tonight. Right now the strange fact is the Kansas City Royals are the hottest team in baseball.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Bob Balfe

Milwaukee Brewers -105

The Brewers only hold a 2 game lead in their division so every game here on out is so important. At even money this has great value due to the fact the Cubs are awful inside of the NL Central. Arrieta has been great this season, but it takes a complete effort from this team to win games. Put this guy on any other team and he is a household name. Gallardo is also having a fine season so we will go with the better team tonight.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Tony George

Oakland vs. Kansas City
Play: Under 7

No one hotter than Kansas City right now, winners of 9 out of their last 10 (15-3 their last 18) and a half game out of first place and chasing the Tiger Tail of Detroit.  An interesting stat for the Royals, when they score 4 runs or more they are an unreal 52-8.  The issue on Monday is simple, can they score 4 runs against Sonny Grey and the A’s at home keep the streak alive?

KC sends Ventura to the hill who has been red hot, winning his last 3 and posting an ERA under 3 in those games.  Neither team hits right handers well, especially their last 5 games as Oakland has struggled at the plate and enter this game against a hot right hander hitting just .213 as a team their last 5 against righties.  Kansas City is smashing southpaws but also are struggling against right handers hitting just .216 their last 5 against right handers.  Looks like a pitcher’s duel to me, which if past results mean anything, the advantage in a low scoring game favors the visitor.

Since the A’s traded away Cespedes, they have stunk it up at the plate and quite frankly have been inconsistent overall but they are making a post season run none the less with pitching carrying them, and Kansas City is simply on fire so this side play does not hold a ton of value in my opinion.  If anyone knows Kansas City, and I live here, they go on runs both good and bad and no doubt will again go on a losing streak at some point as the noose gets tighter, and they are especially suspect against one of MLB’s best teams with the pressure of this run in place.

Kansas City took 2 out of 3 against the A’s a little over a week ago, so Oakland comes in here with revenge and they are 9-2 in Greys last 11 road starts.  The VALUE in this game I believe lies in the UNDER 7 runs, as in this series the Under has cashed in 10-2-1 in the last 13 meetings and this should be a tight, well played ballgame, in Kansas City on a cooler than normal Monday evening game

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Bruce Marshall

Detroit Tigers at Pittsburgh Pirates
Pick: Pittsburgh Pirates

We're going to downplay Justin Verlander's historic success against the NL because the 2014 version of Verlander has lost velocity and does not compare to the Verlander of a few years ago, as his current 4.78 ERA would attest. The Tigers have been losing ground over the past two weeks in the AL Central to the Royals, and now must travel to Pittsburgh to deal with Pirates starter Jeff Locke, who has a 2.57 ERA in his last six starts at PNC Park.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

Rob Veno

Minnesota at Houston
Play: Minnesota -110

Inclined to step in against Houston starter Brad Peacock who is in the midst of one of the worst stretches of pitching MLB has seen this year.  Over his last five starts, Peacock has not made it into the sixth inning once resulting in a 9.90 ERA, 2.00 WHIP and 1-4 W-L record. Causing plenty of trouble for him these past 20 innings are his 12 BB and 52 TB allowed which includes six HR. Houston even sent the righty down to Triple-A between his most recent starts but his last time out he was tagged for eight runs in five innings. With Joe Mauer scheduled to return tonight off of a successful 6-for-15 rehab stint, Minnesota’s lineup becomes more dangerous. Minnesota also welcomes former A’s starter Tommy Milone into their rotation tonight and the familiar battery of Milone-Suzuki figures to be a positive. Blind to the HP umpire at this time but should tonight’s balls and strikes caller have a liberal zone, Milone becomes more effective. Either way, Twins who are in the rare position of slight road favorite should have enough to get the job done here.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

BONES BEST BETS

BREWERS @ CUBS – UNDER 7.5 -115

Gallardo and Arrieta have not faced the Cubs and Brewers respectively this year which is an advantage to the pitchers. Both teams have been playing a lot of unders lately. The Brewers have went under in 3 of 4 and 5 of 7. The Cubs have not went over in their last 4 games. Gallardo has been great on the road this year with a 2.90 ERA and 1.16 WHIP. Before his last start in Colorado, Arrieta had given up 3 earned runs or less in 9 straight while pitching at least 6 innings. At home this year he has a 1.85 ERA and 0.92 WHIP.

ATHLETICS @ ROYALS – UNDER 7 +100

Gray vs Ventura makes for a great pitching duel. Neither of these teams are seeing a ton of runs over their past 10 games (A’s at 7 and Royals at 7.8). In Gray’s only start against KC he allowed just 1 ER (and 3 hits) over 7 innings.

ORIOLES ML -130

Baltimore looks to step away from the pack here in the AL East with a big series at home against the Yankees. The Yankees have been outscored 44-25 while dropping six of nine to the Orioles this season and tonight run into Bud Norris who is 5-2 with a 2.64 ERA in his last eight outings. There isnt much data on Capuano who starts tonight and has a 4.91 ERA in three relief appearances against the Orioles this season. Considered laying the -1 here to get plus money but the Orioles at 24-17 are the best 1 run team in baseball backed by their top tier bullpen. Take the money line.

TWINS @ ASTROS – OVER 8.5 -108

Brad Peacock is absolutely terrible. In his last 3 starts he is 0-3, has pitched just 9 total innings, has an ERA of 16.00 and a WHIP of 2.89! He has a season ERA of 5.44 and an overall record of 3-8. Meanwhile, the Astros have scored a very respectable 45 runs over their last 10 games and should get theirs tonight.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

LineCatchers

Chicago Cubs - 112

A rare opportunity as a sports bettors do we get a line like the one set by the oddsmakers in this match up between the Brewers and Cubs.

In my view, this is a great spot to back the Cubs at home in game 1 of this series against Milwaukee as Jake Arrieta takes the mound. Arrieta has been lights out in 7 home starts in 2014, he is 2-0 with a stingy 1.85 ERA and 0.92 WHIP at Wrigley Field. The Cubs are 5-2 in Arrieta’s 7 home outings. Opponents are hitting just .186 against Arrieta within the friendly confines of Wrigley Field.

Yovani Gallardo gets the nod for the Brewers and is coming off a rough outing against the Giants where he was tagged for 9 hits and issued 4 walks in just 4 IP. The righty has given up at least 4 ER in 4 of his last 7 starts. The Brew Crew have lost seven of Gallardo’s last eight starts and in 14 ‘Night’ starts this season, Gallardo is 1-5 with a 4.41 ERA and 1.36 WHIP.


Minnesota Twins - 111

Brad Peacock will toe the slab for Houston and comes into tonights game having allowed 22 ER in his let 20 IP over 5 starts. He has issued 10 walks in his last 3 outings and his location of his fastball seems non existent. In 10 starts at home in 2014, is 2-3 with a 4.41 ERA and 1.55 WHIP. The righty has averaged just 5 1/3 IP at home this season and the Astros’ bullpen has been rocked for a 4.46 ERA in 194 IP at home.

Tommy Milone gets the start for Minnesota who will be looking to get off to a solid start for the Twins. In 16 starts this season, Milone is 6-3 with a 3.55 ERA and 1.21 WHIP. Milone has given up 3 ER or fewer in 10 of his last 11 outings and has been very consistent throughout the year. Minnesota’s bats have warmed up over the last week, hitting a combined .278 average and .348 slugging mark whilst averaging 5.4 runs per game. The Twins are also 13-7 in their last 20 games against Houston.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Monday, August 11

OC Dooley

Twins -110

For teams like Minnesota already out of the Wild Card playoff chase the trade deadline saw rosters being “thinned” but that is not the case this evening.  For the first time since suffering an oblique injury way back on the first day of July the $184-MILLION dollar man (Joe Mauer) returns to the starting lineup.  At the time he was hurt the disappointing Mauer (2 homers and 28 RBI) was riding a healthy 12-game hit streak and it should be noted that during his just completed rehabilitation stint the veterans batting average (.400) reflected why the Twins signed him to such a large contract.  For those note aware the Minnesota starting rotation has the worst collective ERA in the month of August but they are getting a positive jolt this evening as the newly acquired Tom Milone makes his debut.  Milone came over in a trade from Oakland due to the fact that the A’s made several deals to enhance their staff which left him as the odd man out.  The last time Milone pitched at the major league level (4th of July) was a ONE HIT gem that shockingly was followed by a minor league demotion to the Oakland farm system.  He is making his Twins debut in a good spot since tonight’s Houston starter Brad Peacock has been torched to the tune of FIFTEEN runs allowed in the last pair of assignments.   Houston’s top slugging threat George Springer remains on the disabled list and another high profile rookie Jonathan Singleton (struck out at least three times in 3 of the past 6 games) is in a slump

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