Many eyes will be on David Price Thursday as he goes against Seattle, as a possible trade looms. And he's actually listed at a decent price. Do we play him, or take the underdog?
M's-Tigers Betting Odds
As of early Thursday morning the best price we could find on Detroit with lefty David Price was the -142 offered at GT Bets, while Seattle and Hisashi Iwakuma were getting +137 at 5Dimes. And every book on our MLB odds board was offering a total on today's game of eight runs, with most of the grease leaning toward the UNDER.
Detroit has taken two of the first three games of this four-game series, following Wednesday's 9-4 victory. So the Tigers are 3-3 since the All-Star break, while Seattle is 2-4.
Motor City is playing without slugger Miguel Cabrera, who's on the DL with a pulled calf. But they haven't seemed to miss him too much yet, considering they're averaging 5.7 runs per game since he went down.
At 47-47 Detroit trails division-leading Kansas City by 10.5 games in the AL Central, but still only sits three games behind Minnesota in the battle for that second American League wild-card spot.
Seattle, meanwhile, at 43-52, is 7.5 games behind the Twins in that wild-card race.
The Tigers now lead this season series four games to two, with the OVERS going 5-1, as the games have trended high-scoring.
Thursday's Pitching Match-Up
Price (9-3, 2.32), by our strict standards, is 12-for-19 on quality starts this season, and three for his last three. Last Saturday he limited Baltimore to one run through seven innings, with 12 strikeouts, and over his last three starts he's allowed just two earned runs through 22 innings. For the season Price has allowed 121 hits through 132 innings, walked 26 and struck out 127. Detroit is a solid 15-4 in Price's starts, with the totals going 10-9.
In four career starts against Seattle, all coming since August of 2013, three of those with Tampa Bay, Price has allowed nine runs through 32 innings; his teams won three of those games, and three of those games played UNDER.
Iwakuma (2-1, 4.89) is just one-for-six on quality starts this season, one-for-three since returning after missing 10 weeks with a strained lat. He came within one out of a quality start last time out, holding the Yankees to two runs through 5 2/3 innings last Saturday, and just before that he tossed eight shutout innings against the Angels. On the season Iwakuma has allowed 36 hits, including 10 dingers, through 35 innings, walked five and struck out 25.
The Mariners are 2-4 in Iwakuma's starts, with the totals going 4-2.
As a rookie back in 2013 Iwakuma started twice against Detroit, throwing 14 innings of shutout ball in a pair of Seattle victories. But in his last two starts against the Tigers, including a losing effort two weeks ago, he's allowed 10 runs through 11 innings.
Thursday's Batting Splits
Seattle ranks 17th in the Majors this season against left-handed pitching with a .248 team batting average, and 26th with a .294 team on-base percentage.
Detroit, meanwhile, leads the Majors against right-handed pitching with both a .280 average and a .333 team OBP. And neither of those figures have been affected much by Cabrera's absence.
Ballpark Totals Factor
Games played at Comerica Park this season are 28-21 on the OVERS, averaging 9.4 runs per, fourth-most among all ML ballparks.
Free MLB Picks
Price owns the edge in the pitching match-up, and Detroit owns an advantage with the sticks. We like the Tigers for today. Also, Iwakuma might be coming around, and if he can hold the Tigers to three or four runs this game has a good chance to play UNDER.