Add 'Under' to MLB Picks as Pitching to Dominate Angels-Mariners Series Finale

Mark Lathrop

Wednesday, April 8, 2015 1:51 PM UTC

Wednesday, Apr. 8, 2015 1:51 PM UTC

Here are free MLB picks and predictions for tonight's series finale between the Seattle Mariners and the LA Angels. Find out why we have decided to look to the total tonight.

The Anaheim Angels (1-1 SU) take on the Seattle Mariners (1-1 SU) tonight in the final game of their 3 game series and it will be another matchup featuring excellent pitching. The Mariners took the first game of the series behind the 10 K’s of King Felix, and with that win continued a streak of 9 seasons winning their season opener. They’ll look to continue that strong pitching tonight, after a good showing by James Paxton last night, giving up 2 runs over 6 innings. The Angels pitching last night wasn’t too shabby either, with starter C.J. Wilson spinning 8 innings of shut-out baseball on his way to a win. The opening Total for tonight’s game was listed at 7 at Bovada with the home team favored on the Money Line at -140

In this game, Matt Shoemaker takes the mound for the Angels and Hisashi Iwakuma is slated to pitch for the home squad. The weather in Seattle is actually going to be pretty nice, sunny and in the mid-50’s at game time. It’s been in the 40’s recently with a noticeable effect on fly balls and stinging hands. That marine layer – and Mike Trout - stole a few home run balls in the first two games in this series, but the yard should play more normally tonight, hinting that the total might be the place to look with our MLB picks in tonight's finale.

Matt Shoemaker exploded on the scene last year for the Angels to the tune of a 16-win season after getting called up early in the season from AAA. You know you’ve had a good rookie season when you get your own bobblehead day the next year. Ready for his first full season in the show, Shoemaker’s last spring training game was a good one, pitching 6 shutout innings while notching 6 K’s against these M’s in a split squad game. While Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz were absent from that spring training lineup, those that were in the lineup continued their struggles against Shoemaker. Although early in his career, Shoemaker has held the Mariners to a .193 batting average overall. Making the lead minimum for the Angels, Shoemaker needs to continue this success against a division foe to earn his next big payday.

For the Seattle Mariners, Hisashi Iwakuma also has a good track record of success against this opponent. Iwakuma is coming off of a 15-9 season where he missed all of spring training and the first month of the 2014 season. A groundball pitcher with a 50.2% ground ball rate in 2014, Iwakuma benefits from the Mariners’ excellent infield defense. Howie Kendrick had the most success against him last year, going 4-8, but luckily for Iwakuma, Kendrick is now a Dodger. Looking over the last 3 seasons, Iwakuma has held the most feared Angel’s hitters in check:  Mike Trout is batting .178, Albert Pujols is batting .185, with no other minor contributors finding any kind of success either.

The MLB Pick: These statistics all point towards a low scoring affair and the value lies in looking 'Under' the 7 points posted on the MLB odds boards. Runs should be at a premium in this game, and these two starting pitchers should be able to get the game to their respective bullpens without too much damage being done on either side. With matchup specialists lurking in each bullpen don’t expect an offensive explosion in the later innings after the starters are pulled.

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