MLB Betting News and Notes Wednesday, August 20

MLB Betting News and Notes Wednesday, August 20

Game of the Day: Braves at Pirates
By Covers.com

Atlanta Braves at Pittsburgh Pirates (-117, 7)

Gerrit Cole makes his return to the Pittsburgh Pirates rotation Wednesday when he leads his club into the finale of a three-game series against the visiting Atlanta Braves. Cole has been sidelined with a right lat strain since throwing five scoreless innings against Philadelphia on July 4. His return comes at a challenging time for the Pirates, who have lost seven in a row and are two games out in the race for the second National League wild-card spot.

Atlanta is heading in the other direction, taking the first two games of the series by an 18-6 margin to push its winning streak to five games. The Braves moved into a tie with San Francisco for the second wild card while staying six behind Washington in the NL East. Left fielder Justin Upton has been fueling the charge, hitting .421 with three home runs and eight RBIs during the five-game run.

LINE HISTORY: The Pirates opened as -125 home favorites and have been bet down to -117. The run total is currently at 7.0.

INJURY WATCH: Braves - RP Shae Simmons (15-day DL, shoulder). Pirates - CF Andrew McCutchen (Questionable, ribs), SS Clint Barmes (Late August, groin), SP Gerrit Cole (Probably, back).

POWER RANKINGS: Braves (-165), Pirates (-156).

WHAT CAPPERS SAY: "Pirates welcome Gerrit Cole back off the DL since July 4. First start back off the DL is generally a good spot to back starters as they are anxious to prove they are healthy, often times resulting in a maximum effort. Pirates have cashed nine of Cole’s last 12 home starts. On the flip side, Alex Wood has been getting little run support, evidenced by his 2-6 road start mark despite a 2.92 ERA away this season. Expect six strong innings from Cole tonight." Covers Expert Marc Lawrence.

PITCHING MATCHUP: Braves LH Alex Wood (9-9, 3.07 ERA) vs. Pirates RH Gerrit Cole (7-4, 3.78)

Wood won his second straight start Friday against Oakland, limiting the Athletics to two runs and four hits in six innings. He had just one strikeout, a season low as a starter, after fanning 12 in 7 1/3 innings five days earlier against Washington. The 23-year-old has a 2.84 ERA in 17 starts this season.

Cole tossed seven scoreless frames while throwing 92 pitches in his final rehab start for Triple-A Indianapolis on Friday. He failed to get through six innings in each of his final three major-league starts prior to the injury. Cole, who has never faced Atlanta, is 3-1 with a 3.56 ERA in seven home starts.

TRENDS:

* Braves are 5-0 in the last five meetings.
* Under is 26-8-1 in the last 35 meetings in Pittsburgh.
* Under is 46-21-4 in the last 71 meetings.
* Pirates are 0-7 in their last seven games overall.

COVERS CONSENSUS: Fifty-four percent of wagers are on the Braves at +108.

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Wednesday's Tip Sheet
By Kevin Rogers
VegasInsider.com

Braves at Pirates

Probable Pitchers:
ATL: Wood (9-9, 3.07 ERA)
PIT: Cole (7-4, 3.78 ERA)

Series recap: These two clubs are going in completely opposite directions, as Atlanta won its fifth straight game on Tuesday, dominating Pittsburgh for the second consecutive night, 11-3 as +150 road underdogs. The Pirates are spinning out of control, riding a seven-game losing streak, while allowing 18 runs in the first two losses of this series.

What to watch for: It’s been a while since Gerrit Cole has taken the mound for the Bucs, making his first start since July 4. In seven home starts this season, the Pirates own a 5-2 record when Cole toes the rubber at PNC Park, while Pittsburgh is 12-3 in his last 15 starts dating back to last September in the role of a favorite. The Pirates have fared well in home series finales recently, putting together an 8-2 mark.

Tigers at Rays

Probable Pitchers:
DET: Porcello (13-8, 3.28 ERA)
TB: Odorizzi (9-9, 3.82 ERA)

Series recap: The Tigers outlasted the Rays in a wild 8-6 triumph last night, as Detroit erased an early 4-0 deficit. Detroit cashed as -120 road favorites, as it won on the highway for just the third time in its past 13 games away from Comerica Park.

What to watch for: Following a slow start, Jake Odorizzi has turned it on since mid-June as the Rays have put together an 8-3 record in his past 11 trips to the mound. The Tigers are just 1-5 on the road in their past six tries off a victory, but Detroit has compiled a 4-1 mark in Rick Porcello’s previous five starts.

Angels at Red Sox

Probable Pitchers:
LAA: Richards (13-4, 2.53 ERA)
BOS: Buchholz (5-7, 5.79 ERA)

Series recap: The Angels have taken the first two games of this four-game set, as Los Angeles put up a ninth-inning run to sneak past Boston on Tuesday, 4-3 as -125 favorites. The Halos cashed the ‘under’ in each of the first two contests, extending their ‘under’ streak to six games.

What to watch for: Los Angeles owns a spectacular 11-3 record in Garrett Richards’ 14 road starts, including a 9-1 mark in the away favorite role. The Red Sox are winless in Clay Buchholz’s past five trips to the mound, while Boston has compiled a dreadful 1-6 ledger in the right-hander’s last seven home starts.

Reds at Cardinals

Probable Pitchers:
CIN: Cueto (15-6, 2.06 ERA)
STL: Lynn (13-8, 2.91 ERA)

Series recap: The Cardinals walked-off past the Reds for the second straight night, topping Cincinnati, 5-4 as -170 home favorites on Tuesday. Cincinnati is falling apart fast, dropping its fourth consecutive game with all four defeats coming after holding the lead heading into the seventh inning.

What to watch for: The Reds are in the midst of an awful 5-16 stretch in the last 21 road contests, which includes a 2-5 record in the past seven away series finales. Johnny Cueto has won each of his previous five starts for the Reds, including three in a row on the road. The Cardinals have been on fire at home recently, winning nine of their past 11 at Busch Stadium, including six of those victories by one run.

Orioles at White Sox

Probable Pitchers:
BAL: Chen (12-4, 3.76 ERA)
CHW: Noesi (7-8, 4.84 ERA)

Series recap: The Orioles are back on track following consecutive losses at Cleveland last weekend, as Baltimore won its third straight game last night, 5-1 as short underdogs. The O’s have won four of five meetings with the Sox this season, while outscoring Chicago, 13-3 in the first two wins of this series.

What to watch for: Baltimore continues to play well on the road, winning 11 of its past 16 games away from Camden Yards since late July. The ‘under’ has cashed in six of Wei-Yin Chen’s last seven starts, but the O’s are winless in the southpaw’s past two road outings. The Sox have responded well with Hector Noesi on the mound, especially at home, as Chicago has won each of the right-hander’s past four starts at U.S. Cellular Field.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Wednesday, August 20

Baseball Betting: Streaks, Tips, Notes
Sportspic.com

Kansas City at Colorado

Two teams at opposite ends of the scale try to best each other when Kansas City and Colorado play the finale of a mini two game interleague series at Coors Field. The Royals on a tear during August going 15-3 platting 5.22 runs/game have Danny Duffy (8-10, 2.60 ERA) toeing the rubber. The left-hander wasn't very sharp last time out tossing 5 1/3 innings of 6 hit 3 run ball but was still able to notch his third straight win and fifth straight team start victory. Rockies 5-12 in August crossing 4.65 per/contest but giving up 5.71 per/game counter with Jorge De La Rosa (12-8, 4.32 ERA). The Colorado southpaw off a sharp 7 innings of 3 run ball in a home victory over Cincinnati heads to the hill a solid 8-2 with a 3.30 ERA at Coors Field over 11 starts (9-2 TSR). Royals 15-4 in interleague action, 8-1 on the road have been pegged -$1.25 favorite over Rockies hitting the field 6-13 vs the Junior Circuit including 5-4 at home. Although the betting market has Royals favored were not in the same camp knowing Rockies have flourished at home with De La Rosa facing a team with a winning record posting a 22-4 record last twenty-six situations. Rockies have also won 15 of the hurler's last 18 under the light's at Coors Field and Rockies sport a smart 13-1 streak at home with De La Rosa following a team loss the previous attempt.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Wednesday, August 20

MLB Betting Cheat Sheet
By Covers.com

Interleague Faves Pay Off

All five interleague favorites came through on a fairly predictable Tuesday night in the majors. Oakland (-232), Seattle (-157), Milwaukee (-147), Kansas City (-141) and Miami (-139) all prevailed while going 2-2-1 over/under. Wednesday features five more interleague matchups with Miami (-163), Philadelphia (-113), Milwaukee (-117), Oakland (-190) and Kansas City (-119) all favored.

No Love for the Padres

Covers readers have made it known they aren't big fans of the San Diego Padres Wednesday. The Padres (+136, 7.5) are the biggest underdogs in the Covers Consensus listings for the day, with only 24 percent of voters choosing them to beat the host Dodgers.

Kluber Building Value

Cleveland Indians pitcher Corey Kluber looks to continue his red-hot second half Thursday as he faces the host Minnesota Twins. Kluber is 4-0 with a 0.76 ERA in six second-half starts to vault himself to 15th in pitcher value at $655.

Pitching Notes

Oakland righty Jeff Samardzija will look to reverse his fortunes Wednesday as he and the Athletics (-190, 7) host the New York Mets in an interleague tilt. Samardzija is 0-2 with a 7.00 ERA in eight career appearances - including two starts - against the Mets.

Detroit Tigers lefty David Price makes his return to St. Petersburg for the first time in a different uniform as he faces the Tampa Bay Rays. Price is 2-1 straight up and 1-2 O/U in three starts with the Tigers, earning a win and a pair of no-decisions.

Hitting Notes

Mike Trout's recent slump hasn't affected the Los Angeles Angels (-137, 8.5), who continue their series against the host Boston Red Sox. Trout is just 4-for-27 with 10 strikeouts over his last seven games, but the Angels are 6-1 SU in that span.

Expect a rough night for Will Venable as he and the Padres face Zack Greinke and the Dodgers on Thursday. Venable is just 2-for-15 in his career versus Greinke and has struck out eight times - more than any other member of the San Diego roster.

Totals Streak

Washington Nationals (4-0-1 O/U): Pivotal to the Nationals' recent winning ways is a streaking offense that is averaging 5.6 runs over the past five games. That stretch has moved Washington to 33-23-7 O/U at home for the season, and 61-52-11 overall.

Prop of the Day

Riding the Nationals' recent knack of winning tight games could pay handsomely, with Washington at +320 to win by exactly one run. Five of the Nationals' eight victories during the streak have come by a run, including four of the last five.

Injury Notes

The San Diego Padres are expected to have starter Andrew Cashner back in the rotation this weekend in Arizona. Cashner, who has missed more than two months with a shoulder injury, is 2-6 with a 2.36 ERA and is -$22 for the season

The Dodgers believe that starter Josh Beckett may miss the remainder of the season from a hip injury. If he's done for the year, Beckett (6-6, 2.88 ERA) will finish as one of the worst value plays of 2014 at -$517 in 20 starts.

Weather Watch

Wind at Dodger Stadium will blow out to center field at 7 mph for Wednesday's game between the Padres and Dodgers. Teams averaged 1.96 home runs in 25 games under similar conditions in 2013 - well above the stadium average of 1.65.

Umpire Note of the Day


The home team is 11-1 in umpire Phil Cuzzi's last 12 games calling balls and strikes. Cuzzi will be behind home plate Wednesday when the Rays (-120, 7.5) host Detroit.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Wednesday, August 20

MLB Betting News and Notes
By Covers.com

Road teams dominating American League action

The American League has been absolutely dominated by the traveling teams. Road teams are a stunning 13-2 since Sunday, including winning all eight on Monday and Tuesday.

The road team has outscored their hosting counterparts 92-48 in AL action over the past three days.


A's love when Samardzija's the favorite

The Oakland Athletics have struggled losing five of their last six, but are happy to be sending Jeff Samardzija to the hill to face the New York Mets Wednesday afternoon.

The A's, who are currently -180 home faves, have won six consecutive games where Samardzija is the favorite. Oakland is also 34-7 in their last 41 interleague games as a favorite of -151 and -200.


What early matchup is trending towards the under?

When the Blue Jays and Brewers finish of a mini two-game series in Milwaukee, it's a matchup leaning towards the under.

The under is 14-3 in R.A. Dickey's last 17 road starts against opponents with winnings records, while the Brewers are 2-8 over/under in their last 10 home games.

The total for game is currently at 8.5.


What trend was hot on the diamond Tuesday night?

Favorites were the best bet in major league action Tuesday night going 11-4 straight up, hitting at a mark of over 73 percent.

The over also had a good night going 9-5 over/under, coming in at over 64 percent. Much better than the season average of 49 percent.


National League bats paying big for bettors

The National League has been scoring big and paying out for totals bettors. Games in the NL have an over/under record of 13-4 since Sunday.

In 17 games, one of which was shortened, NL teams have scored 173 runs which averages to 10.2 runs per game.

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Re: MLB Betting News and Notes Wednesday, August 20

MLB Odds and Picks
By: Micah Roberts   
Sportingnews.com

LAS VEGAS -- We’ve got several season-changing streaks happening in baseball right now, with some teams positioning themselves well for the final five weeks of the season while others appear to be fading away. There is plenty of time for a reversal in fortune, but this is the part of the season when a manager wants his club to prove its worth.

Washington manager Matt Williams was apparently the missing ingredient to get the most out of an under-performing Nationals squad.   The first-year manager currently has the team riding an eight-game winning streak that has catapulted them to the best record (71-53) in the NL. They’re a -200 favorite behind Tanner Roark tonight against Arizona, a team they have now beaten in 12 of the last 16 meetings. A win tonight would mark the Nats’ longest winning streak since a franchise record-tying 10 straight in 2005.

The Braves looked as though they were finished during a stretch that began on July 29 where they lost 12 of 15, but they’ve since righted the ship and have won five straight.  Atlanta is now tied with San Francisco for the final wild-card position in the NL.  Their resurgence is simple baseball: ‘just hit the ball where they ain’t.’ During their five-game win streak, they’ve hit 10 homers and scored 33 runs. Tonight, they go for their first sweep at Pittsburgh since 2001.

The Brewers are also riding a five-game win streak and have averaged 5.6 runs a game while allowing only two runs a game over that stretch.  They’re 11-6 in the month of August, which should provide a huge boost in confidence as they head towards September.   Over the last two weeks – when they’ve taken five of six from the Dodgers, beating Zack Greinke twice and Clayton Kersahw once – I’ve become a reluctant believer.  Jimmy Nelson is a -120 favorite tonight over the Blue Jays and R.A. Dickey in the final of a two-game series. The Blue Jays have lost six of their last seven.

Baltimore, Kansas City, Miami, St. Louis and the Cubs are all riding three-game win streaks.

Meanwhile, Tampa Bay, Boston, Minnesota, Cincinnati and the Mets are on losing streaks of three games or more and have been punching bags for most of the year.  Pittsburgh has lost seven straight, but its woes are more recent.

Pittsburgh hasn’t lost eight straight since a 10-game meltdown in 2011, a season when everyone predicted the upstart Bucs would fade. Before their current series with Atlanta started, they had the best home record in the NL, but that distinction now belongs to Washington.  Having dropped the first two games to the Braves, the Pirates are on the verge of being swept at home for the first time since 2012.

Andrew McCutchen’s return to the lineup (0-for-4) couldn’t halt the building tidal wave last night, and tonight they look for another fresh-off-the-DL player, Gerrit Cole, to stop the bleeding. Cole is -115 favorite against Alex Wood, and the recommendation is either to bet the Braves or make no play at all. Until the Pirates shake the funk, they’re unbettable.

Today’s plays

The game that looks the most attractive tonight has Garrett Richards (13-4, 2.53 ERA) as a -135 favorite at Fenway Park against Clay Buchholz (5-7, 5.79). The Angels have won six of their last seven, and Richards has been terrific in three August starts (2-0, 1.19 ERA) after being roughed up in two late-July starts. He got a no-decision against the Red Sox in Anaheim 11 days ago in a 5-4 Angels win, a game started by Buchholz. It was the Angels' only win in the three-game set.

The Red Sox are 6-6 all-time against the Angels behind Buchholz, with 10 of the 12 games going OVER the total, including the Aug. 9 meeting at Anaheim. However, the Angels are currently riding a streak of six straight UNDERs.

Perhaps the best thing about the Angels this season – and the major differences from their underachieving past two seasons – has been their ability to handle their business against lesser teams. When playing teams with a losing record, they are 40-15, netting +20 units of profit for bettors.

Wednesday selections:

Angels (Richards) -135 at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET

Reds/Cardinals UNDER 7 (-115), 7:15 p.m. ET       

Orioles (Chen) -140 at White Sox, 8:10 p.m. ET

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