L.A. 11-1 On Tuesday's Makes Betting Dodgers Our Winning Pick Against Rays

Bud Norris

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 1:56 PM GMT

Let’s handicap this one—and make some MLB picks—from a situational standpoint, as any historical data from this Interleague matchup just doesn’t carry enough sample size weight to be judged by and used as a tool to help make a logical decision.

Tampa Bay Rays vs L.A. Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers (56-44) and RHP Bud Norris (5-9) welcome the Tampa Bay Rays (38-60) and RHP Chris Archer (5-13) in Game 1 of this 2-game Interleague series at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday night, with both teams getting a day of Rest on Monday. Offshore sportsbooks have made the Dodgers slight -123 Home favorites —the Rays are +114 on the take-back (Heritage)—with the game's Total (Runs) opening up at 7½ (Over -113, Heritage).

The Run Line MLB odds here sees Los Angeles -1½ runs priced at +178 with the visiting Rays +1½ runs priced at a very lofty -202 (Heritage) because of the perceived possibility of a low-scoring game. The scheduled Starters for Game 2 in this series on Wednesday (3:10 p.m. EDT/12:10 p.m. PDT) are RHP Brandon McCarthy (2-0) for Los Doyers and Matt Moore (6-7) for Tampa Bay. In Interleague Games so far this season, the Dodgers are 5-7 (2-4 at Home) while Tampa Bay is 6-9 (5-3 on Road) after going an impressive 14-6 in Interleague Play last MLB season.

Tampa Bay Rays
The Tampa Bay Rays (2,000/1 to win World Series, at Bet365) headed into the All-Star Break on a nasty 3-19 run in their L22 games, and since then (post All-Star Break), Tampa Bay and Manager Kevin Cash have gone 4-6 with the bulk of those games coming during this current 9-game Road-stand which ends in Los Angeles on Wednesday. On Sunday in a 3-2 Loss at Oakland Alameda Coliseum against the A's, Rays Manager Tampa Bay (1,000/1 to win AL, at BetVictor) Cash had a Starting Batting Order of: 2B Logan Forsythe, SS Brad Miller, 3B Evan Longoria, LF Corey Dickerson, 1B Steve Pearce, DH Oswaldo Arcia, RF Steven Souza Jr., CF Kevin Kiermaier, C Luke Maile with Blake Snell getting the Start and pitching pretty well against Oakland, allowing just 2 Runs (both Earned) on 7 Hits in 6.2 IP.

Dickerson (Double) and Forsythe (Home Run) were the only Rays (16-30 on Grass) hitters with extra-base hits with Forsythe providing both Runs with a 2-run blast in the Top of the 8th Inning to tie the game at 2-2. The A's went on to win it in their Bottom of the 9th Inning when Billy Butler hit a solo shot off Rays Reliever Erasmo Ramírez in the Bottom half of the 8th Inning. One thing to remember here is that Rays Starter Archer will have to bat in an NL ballpark, so getting (no) production from the presumed No. 9-spot is worth working into your handicap.

Los Angeles Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers (22/1 to win World Series, at PaddyPower) and first-year Manager Dave Roberts have returned Home to Los Angeles after a 9-game Road swing in which the Dodgers went 5-4, going 1-2 in Arizona against the Diamondbacks, 2-1 in Washington, DC against Bryce Harper and the Nationals and then going 2-1 to also take that 3-game series in St. Louis against the Cardinals. In their last game on Sunday against the Redbirds, a 9-6 win at Busch Stadium in the Gateway City, Dodgers Manager Roberts put out a Starting Lineup of: 2B Chase Utley, SS Corey Seager, 3B Justin Turner, 1B Adrian Gonzalez, LF Howie Kendrick, C Yasmani Grandal, RF Andrew Toles, CF Joc Pederson with LHP Scott Kazmir getting the pill for the visitors.

In the Win on Sunday, which gave the series to Los Angeles (30-18 at Home), Gonzalez went 3-for-4 with 2 Singles, a HR and 4 RBI while Seager, Turner, Kendrick and Pederson all had 2 Hits as the Dodgers (435 RF-371 RA, +64 RD) rocked Cardinals pitching in the series finale. Los Angeles has had a significant number of Injuries it's been dealing with this season, and heading in here RF Yasiel Puig (Hamstring) is listed as Questionable so Toles may again start in RF.

Starting Pitchers Report Card
This will mark the first Start for Rays RHP Chris Archer (5-13, 4.60 ERA, 147 K's, 1.39 WHIP) against the Los Angeles Dodgers with only Howie Kendrick (.167) having At Bats against Archer, whose last Start was his first Quality Start in the L32 days as he struck out 11 and allowed just 2 Runs and 4 Hits over 6.0 IP against the Colorado Rockies. But before that, the Rays Righty had allowed at least 4 runs in his previous 4 Starts, so against a hot-hitting LA lineup here on Tuesday night, the Rays Starter might have his work cut out for him the first two times through the Batting Order (if he lasts that long). In this particular Ballpark (Dodger Stadium) with its large amount of Foul Territory, Pitchers can fare pretty well so from a handicapping standpoint, probably best to expect the Dodgers to play to the level of their own stadium and for Archer to be at his best, although stray fastballs may end up in a big Dodgers (11/1 to win NL, Paddy Power) inning or two if Archer is not on early.

Against scheduled Dodgers Starter Bud Norris (5-9, 4.56 ERA, 86 K's, 1.36 WHIP) in somewhat limited action, Tampa Bay has done fairly well with Logan Morgan (.571, 4-7, 3 RBI), Brad Miller (.400), Kevin Kiermaier (.333, 2-6, HR, 2 RBI), Brandon Guyer (.333) and Corey Dickerson (.333) all posting nice batting averages—Over fodder—while veteran Evan Longoria (.214) has had just 3 Hits in 12 AB against Norris, although 2 of the Hits were HRs and he does have 4 RBI against him. In his last outing, Norris lasted just 1.3 IP in Relief, and allowed the game-losing walk-off HR to Matt Adams in the 16th Inning in a Loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, while in his last Start, Norris (1-1, 4.67 ERA, 1.50 WHIP Lifetime vs. Tampa Bay) gave up 6 Runs on 7 Hits to the Washington Nationals, so he has been hit hard when he has been in of late, making the Over the lean in the Totals marketplace with the Rays in a spot where they should score 3 Runs.

Los Angeles Weather, Trends and the Dodgers Are Really Good At Home On Tuesdays...
The Weather Channel forecast for Los Angeles on Tuesday evening is currently calling for a Mostly Clear sky, a Low of 68° (Fahrenheit) with Light and Variable S Winds to 5 mph, so, absolutely perfect Weather for Baseball. The current ongoing Megatrend sees the Rays going an anemic 7-26 over their L33 games yet winning more games in the L10 (4) as they had in their previous 22 (3). Tampa Bay (19-30 on Road) is actually a better team on the Road in Interleague play although playing on a synthetic surface at Home (Tropicana Field) and then traveling 2,526 miles—and losing 3 Body Clock Hours—to play on the Road and in Chavez Ravine (30-18 at Home). And the thing here is that these two MLB teams seldom play each other, with one being an indoor, American League team from the East Coast and the other being an outdoor, National League team from the West.

Trend-wise, the Dodgers are an incredible 11-1 on Tuesdays this MLB season, 21-6 their L27 Home games, 7-0 their L7 against teams with a Winning Percentage under .400 and Los Angeles is also 11-5 their L16 Home Interleague games. Tampa Bay is 10-25 its L35 games on Grass, 2-5 the L7 Tuesdays, 15-40 its L55 against a team with a Winning Record and 6-21 the L27 games after an Opponent scores 5+ Runs in their previous game and the Rays are 3-13 in Archer's L16 Starts vs. a team with a Winning Record. The Over is 16-51 in Archer's L22 Starts on Grass, 3-0-2 in archer's L5 Tuesday Starts, 20-7-1 in Tampa Bay's L28 games following a Loss and 13-6-2 in the L21 Game 1's of a Rays series but the Under is 7-2-1 L10 TB games, their won't be a DH (Designated Hitter) for the visitors and Chavez Ravine is a notoriously Under setting.

With the Dodgers 4-2 and the Over 4-2 Lifetime when Norris starts, backing both the host Dodgers and the Over at 7½ at these low prices seems the wisest betting advice. This team is really good on Tuesdays and at Home with a 2-game Win Streak looking up at the San Francisco Giants in the NL West will provide enough motivation and this being Game 1 after a long Travel and post-10 pm-EDT Body Clock starting time for the hosts, Los Angeles has the edges to become my MLB picks.

PREDICTED FINAL SCORE: Dodgers 5 Rays 3
Free MLB Picks: Dodgers -129, Over 7½ -117
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle​
MLB RECORD SEASON TO DATE: 19-19-2

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