Syndergaard Makes Mets Run Line MLB Pick vs. Royals & Kennedy

Tuesday, June 21, 2016 3:56 PM GMT

We do not make run line MLB picks very often, but we feel that we have found a good one in a World Series rematch when the Kansas City Royals visit the New York Mets on Tuesday.

 

MLB Record: 44-36-2, +10.57

A World Series rematch from last year could provide good run line value for the favorites Tuesday night when Ian Kennedy and the defending World Champion Kansas City Royals (38-31, 13-23 away) pay a visit to fellow right-hander Noah Syndergaard and the New York Mets (36-32, 17-16 home) in the first game of a brief two-game interleague series from Citi Field in Flushing, NY at 7:10 ET in a game available on SNY.

The run line at Heritage Sports has New York as a home favorite for this contest with the current line at -1½ on the MLB odds board at odds of +110.

Royals Heating Up Again
The Royals were not off to the greatest of starts this season as they try to defend their first championship since 1985 and attempt to reach their third straight World Series, but they could be back in that form now as they have won eight of their last nine games after winning the last three games of a four-game series vs. the Detroit Tigers. Unfortunately, the last six of those wins came at home and they now must go on the road, where they are a disappointing 13-23.

While the Royals have been hot, the Mets have been the losing MLB picks in six of their last eight games and they were just swept three games here at home by the Atlanta Braves, who entered that series with the worst record in baseball! New York has now dropped into a second place tie with the Miami Marlins in the National League East, 5½ games behind the first place Washington Nationals.

One of the Premier Pitchers in Baseball
But while the Mets may be reeling a bit, they have the perfect stopper on the mound tonight in Syndergaard, who is not only one of the best pitchers in the Major Leagues already but is also only getting better while still only 23 years of age! “Thor” comes of off yet another dominant outing vs. the Pittsburgh Pirates where he allowed one earned run on five hits in 8.1 innings with 11 strikeouts and not a single walk.

Now, there are hard throwing pitchers and then there is Syndergaard, who has taken things to another level by leading the Major Leagues in average velocity among starting pitchers this season at 98.1 MPH while topping out at an almost invisible 101.4 MPH! And yet, Thor has impeccable command for someone so young that throws so hard, as he has a phenomenal 106 strikeouts vs. 12 walks in 85 innings, helping lead to a 7-2 record, 1.91 ERA and 0.96 WHIP.

That strikeout rate of 11.22 per nine innings is fourth best in the Major Leagues while the walk rate of 1.27 per nine ranks third, and when you add in allowing only four home runs, you come up with an amazing 1.70 FIP and a 2.16 xFIP that is second best in baseball and not really all that far behind the leader Clayton Kershaw and his 1.98.

Kennedy Getting Shelled Lately
This looks like a total pitching mismatch as far as the starters are concerned with Syndergaard being opposed by Kennedy, who has been even worse than usual over his last three outings and stands at just 5-5 with a 4.17 ERA overall despite having the support of a very good team. Kennedy looks even worse sabremetrically as his mediocre ERA is actually outperforming his ugly 5.26 FIP and 4.76 xFIP, which is never a good sign.

But getting back to those last three starts, Kennedy was lit up twice by the Indians and once by the White Sox, surrendering a total of 16 earned runs on 22 hits plus four walks over 18.1 innings of work, translating to a 7.85 ERA and 1.42 WHIP. He also allowed a whopping eight home runs over those three starts and yet somehow won a game thanks to his offense 9-4 over Cleveland last time out.

Kennedy does not figure to get hardly any run support this time around though with the Royals facing Syndergaard, so if Kennedy stays on his current path, this game could possibly already be out of hand by the time Kansas City calls on its great bullpen later on.

Road Struggles vs. Righties
Now, the Royals have not struggled with too many splits offensively in recent years, but one hiccup has been going 7-19 in their last 26 road games vs. right-handed starters, and probably none of those right-handers was as good as Syndergaard. Meanwhile, the Mets are 13-5 in Syndergaard's last 18 home starts.

Granted the Mets are prohibitive home favorites on the money line here, as you would expect, but we feel the disparity between these starters is huge enough to produce a multiple-run win for the Mets, making New York out pick on the run line at positive odds hosting Kansas City on Tuesday.

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MLB Pick: Mets -1½ (+110)
Best Line Offered: at Bet365