Houston Astros vs. Los Angeles Angels
Sunday, August 2, 2020 – 4:10 pm EST
- Houston: Josh James (0-0 9.00 ERA)
- Los Angeles: Shohei Ohtani (0-1 INFINITY ERA)
Shohei Ohtani couldn’t get a single out in his first start for the Angels in two years. He allowed five earned runs and three hits along with three walks against the Athletics. You can’t do much worse than that.
If you look back at his 2018 numbers, he had an ERA of 3.31 and went 4-2 in 10 games and started holding batters to a .203 batting average.
Maybe he’ll never be the same again. Maybe he will not be that same Ohtani from 2018. But as an underdog against Josh James, there’s reason to look at Ohtani in this spot just based on his 2018 numbers.
He held lefties to a .192 average while righties hit .211 in 2018. Righties slugged a bit more but still, at home, Ohtani has a 2.33 ERA, allowing just seven runs in five games.
Yes, seven runs in five games.
With momentum on the Angels side, maybe Ohtani gets a couple outs and then gets comfortable and pitched five solid innings. Why not?
Josh James is going for the Astros. In 61.1 innings pitched, he had just one start and walked 5.14 batters per nine innings while striking out 14.67 batters per nine innings. He’s as erratic as they come. On the road, he had a 2.73 ERA and went 3-0 in 22 games but the reality is, he’s not going deep in this game.
Ohtani can’t be worse than he was in his last start. James is as erratic as they come on the mound and is always all over the place when he’s pitching. If the Angels can capitalize while Ohtani gives them solid innings, why can’t the Angels get another win against the Astros?
Ohtani as an underdog, at home, after putting up an ERA of 3.31 in 2018? Sign me up, thanks to the MLB oddsmakers.
New York Mets vs. Atlanta Braves
Sunday, August 2, 2020 – 1:10 pm EST
- New York: David Peterson (1-0 3.18 ERA)
- Atlanta: Kyle Wright (0-1 16.88 ERA)
The Mets have been embarrassed by the Braves in the first two games of the three-game series but will do whatever they can to prevent the sweep. The Mets will pitch David Peterson, who will make his second big league start of his career. In his first start of the season, he went 5.2 innings and allowed seven hits and two runs along with three strikeouts and two walks.
Peterson was the Mets' top pitching prospect and didn’t disappoint while getting the win for the Mets in his debut. While it sounded nice, Peterson still struggled a bit and was able to get out of jams in the game. It was hit hard and didn’t have a high strikeout rate in that game.
However the Braves strikeout plenty and if Peterson can exploit that with the Braves, he could be well on his way to his second win of the season.
The Braves will pitch Kyle Wright, a pitcher who gets hit even harder than Peterson. He has a SIERA of 5.73, which is the worst out of any pitcher this season. He allowed five runs on four hits in 2.2 innings of work. Wright also added three strikeouts and three walks on the night against the Rays.
In three starts and two other appearances, last season at home, he had an ERA of 10.05. He also had an OBA of .355 while allowing eight walks in 14.1 innings. Wright walked 5.95 batters per nine innings last season and in the Rays game, he was on pace for 10.13 walks per nine innings.
Kyle Wright has been getting rocked these last couple of years and the Mets, while don’t have a reliable bullpen, do have hitters that will produce against this kind of pitching.
If Peterson gives the Mets another five or six inning game, the Mets should be able to steal this game as slight underdogs on the road. Against Wright, there's no reason the Mets should be underdogs and the online sportsbooks that have the Mets as underdogs are plain wrong in this match-up.