Today's value is going to be on the total between the Houston Astros and the Tampa Bay Rays. With a pretty good pitching matchup, I'm still going to back over the total on this game as I think the line is set a little bit too low, but more importantly there is good value on over the total.
MLB odds makers have come out with a total of 7 for this matchup but the higher juice is on the under. There are some places where you can get the odds at 6.5 at around regular -110 juice, but at most sportsbooks the line is at 7 at around -125 on the under. The best odds I have seen for that number are at Pinnacle at +109, so my play here is over the total of 7 at a little plus money to a pick.
Jake Odorizzi takes the mound for Tampa Bay just coming back from injury. He was having a solid 2015 campaign with a 2.47 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP. But I'm backing the theme that has been popular this season on pitchers coming back from injury, in that they have not pitched very well. He does have a career ERA of 3.67 in around 280 innings, and he is in a tough spot having to face one of the better hitting teams in the league in the Astros.
Dallas Keuchel gets the call for the Astros and he's having an amazing season so far with a 2.14 ERA and an 0.99 WHIP. What impresses me about him is that he gets a lot of ground ball outs and doesn't need to strike out a lot of guys to be efficient. I do consider him a good major league pitcher and he is definitely the anchor of the Astros' staff but he is pitching above what his averages dictate. His numbers in the second half of the season will not hold up to what he has done so far and I look for Tampa Bay to go ahead and have some nice at-bats against him today. He is a fun guy to root for and will probably have a good season, but look for that career ERA of 3.70 to come into play a as he continues to pitch further into the year.
Houston ranks sixth in the major leagues in runs scored per game, and they actually average more on the road than they do at home. Tampa Bay ranks 25th in the league in runs scored per game and they're in the bottom part of the league in most offensive categories. The Astros rank seventh in on base plus slugging percentage and Tampa Bay 24th. This is basically the theme when looking at these two teams, the Astros are ranked in the top 10 in most every major offensive category and Tampa Bay is down in the bottom part of league. Still, Tampa has enough and after yesterday's 3-1 game with only nine hits combined by both these teams, I think we are in to see a lot more offense on both ends today.
With the high juice on this game I think the odds makers are trying to lead us in the wrong direction. Don't buy into paying high juice on what you think will be a pitcher's duel when this game is actually going to be more like a 6-4 type of final. Take any plus money you can get on what should be a more productive offensive game than people believe.
MLB Pick: 'Over' 7 +110 at The Greek