MLB Picks: Finding The Betting Edge In Royals vs. Phillies Game

Sunday, July 3, 2016 11:00 AM GMT

The Royals dropped the opener on Friday to The Phillies, but notched a victory yesterday. Let's review the MLB odds and cash another MLB Pick in the rubber match on Sunday.

We all complain about the bad beats, the tough losses and the calls that didn't go our way. It's a way to let off some of the steam that goes hand-in-hand with sports gambling. But when your job is to make your MLB Picks in a public forum, you invite scrutiny and nobody really gives a damn why your team lost, only that they lost. That's life as a professional handicapper and those who are tailing you show no sympathy as it is a "what have you done for me lately" kind of business.

But today I am going to publically state that my analysis on the White Sox/Astros game yesterday was dead wrong but I won despite it. I hitched my wagon to the star that is Chris Sale and he was far more mortal than he has been at any point this season, allowing five runs (four earned) on six hits but picked up his 14th win of the season due to an offense that simply outmuscled their opponents. I analyzed the MLB Odds and saw I could get arguably the best pitcher in baseball for close to even money and I pounced. Sure, the Astros had been steamrolling the last dozen or so games but the White Sox aren't a bad team and they had their stud ace on the hill. In short, I got lucky and my sizzling season continues, now hitting at over 65 percent and plus north of 20 units. Let's do it all over again this afternoon.


Phillies' Streak Snapped But Velazquez Returns
The Phillies saw their four-game winning streak snapped yesterday as Kansas City's white hot Kendrys Morales launched two home runs in the Royals 6-2 victory. Morales is now 26-for-46 (.565 batting average) with seven home runs and 21 RBI over his last dozen games. The veteran will see more action in the outfield this afternoon as his scorching hitting streak has forced skipper Pete Mackanin to reconsider resting the team's designated hitter and playing him in the outfield under the prevailing National League rules.

Twenty-four-year-old Vince Velasquez (6-2, 3.38 ERA, 1.23 WHIP) was sidelined with a biceps strain and missed almost three weeks of action before he returned on Monday to take on the Diamondbacks in the desert. Velasquez dazzled and blanked Arizona, surrendering only five hits and notching seven K's over five innings in Philadelphia's 8-0 shutout victory.

His opposing number will be another young gun, plying his trade in a Royals uniform. Yordano Ventura (6-5, 5.00 ERA, 1.45 WHIP) is on the mound for KC and he has been a wild card to say the least this season. In early June he was torched by the Orioles for six runs on seven hits in just four plus innings of work in a 9-1 defeat. Ventura then had a pair of masterful performances in which he allowed only one run in a combined 13 plus innings of work in wins over the White Sox and Tigers. But in his last start he was shelled yet again when he surrendered seven runs in five plus innings to the Cardinals which resulted in an 8-4 loss.

Betting Analysis
My initial thoughts concerning this game revolve around the woeful Philadelphia offense that ranks 29th in runs scored and slugging percentage, 27th in team batting average and dead last in on base percentage. But then I reflect upon a Phillies' surge that has seen the team bust out of their offensive doldrums and average almost six runs per game over their last six contests. I also consider that their pitcher Vince Velasquez is a burgeoning star and looked electric in his first start back off the DL. His last appearance marked the fourth start this season that he had at least seven strikeouts and now has 80 K's on the season in only 66.2 innings.

KC's Yordano Ventura is 2-4 in the road with a 5.19 ERA and a 1.57 WHIP while Philly's Velasquez is 3-1 with a 1.24 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP at home. Although Kansas City has the 2nd ranked team batting average, the club has struggled to plate runs with the 27th ranked offense in the league. And while Kendrys Morales is hitting the cover off the ball he will eventually regress to the mean and that could happen today against a superior pitcher like Velasquez. Let's go with the small home chalk here.

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Free MLB Pick: Phillies -111
Best Line Offered: at YouWager
MLB Record: 43-23, +20.53 units