Bet Underdogs in Royals vs. Indians for Tonight's MLB Picks

Joe Gavazzi

Tuesday, September 23, 2014 1:17 PM GMT

Before placing your MLB Picks make sure to read our cappers informative betting article on the Kansas City Royals vs. Cleveland Indians matchup.

Kansas City Royals (Ventura) vs. Cleveland Indians (Salazar) (-110) 7:05 ET 
Kansas City (EVEN) 

Cleveland is a solid home team at 45-31. That is part of the Tribe’s 82-75 overall record. Historically, however, Cleveland has performed far better at this site if they are coming off a victory. In addition, the Tribe is just 1-5 recently on this field vs. foes with a winning record. The 2-0 loss to KC in the regular season game last night was stinging. With just 5 games remaining, it dropped Cleveland 3 ½ games behind KC with Oakland, Seattle and Detroit also standing in their way for a potential playoff spot. There is more pressure on Cleveland in this contest.

Realities are that the playoff picture looks just about set in the AL. Computerized projections give the Royals (along with Baltimore, LAA, Oakland and Detroit) a better than 96% chance to reach the Promised Land. The improbable KC ascent in the standings has come in no small part because of their outstanding road play. For the season, KC is 43-32 on the road, including 16-7 of late. In addition, KC is 17-8 on the road vs. teams with a greater than .500 home record. Though the Royals have all but locked up a playoff berth, there is still ample motivation for them to win the division title as they trail Detroit by a single game for that honor.

The pitching matchup is clearly in our favor in this contest. In his recent 3 outings, the Tribe has gone 1-2 in Salazar’s last 3 starts. Over 17 2/3 IP, Salazar has allowed 10 runs. A little better than mediocre history against the Royals does not offer confidence. In 4 outings, spanning 22 1/3 IP, Salazar has a 4.43 ERA. Far prefer the consistent work of Ventura. Ventura has recorded 10 consecutive quality starts with the Royals going 8-2 in those contests. Ventura has been even better in his 5 most recent starts. The Royals have gone 4-1 in those contests with Ventura posting a 1.95 ERA. In 32 1/3 IP of those outings, Ventura has allowed just 9 runs and 23 hits. Pitching on 5 or more days rest, as he is today, has also been a positive for Ventura for the Royals are 5-0 when Ventura pitches in that situation. Four outings vs. Cleveland have spanned 27 1/3 IP in which Ventura has a 1.98 ERA and 1.02 WHIP. Ventura’s road outings have been even better than his work at home, as he is 7-3 away with a 3.17 ERA.

There is more pressure on Cleveland in this game than a KC team who will be playing with positive energy, knowing that they have all but locked up a playoff position, but still hunger for the divisional crown. With far the better of it on the mound, there is tremendous value playing the Royals for your MLB picks at this small underdog price at 5Dimes.

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