Detroit, somewhat surprisingly, is having little problem scoring runs without Miguel Cabrera. It hasn't resulted in a bunch of wins, but the totals are still skewing OVER.
M's-Tigers Tuesday Betting Odds
As of early Tuesday morning the best line we could find on Seattle with Taijuan Walker was the -122 offered at BookMaker, while Detroit and the struggling Shane Greene were getting +118 at 5Dimes. And every book on our MLB odds board was listing a total of 9.5 runs on tonight's game, with most of the grease leaning toward the UNDER.
Detroit grabbed Game 1 of this four-game series Monday night 5-4, taking the lead for good on Ian Kinsler's two-out, two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth inning.
The victory was just the Tigers' second in their last seven games, while the loss was Seattle's fourth in its last five contests.
At 46-46 Detroit trails first-place Kansas City by 9.5 games in the AL Central, but sits only four games behind Minnesota in the battle for the second American League wild-card spot.
At 42-51 Seattle sits tied with Boston for the worst record in the American League, 8.5 games back of the nearest playoff berth.
Green (4-7, 6.32) is just five-for-14 on quality starts this season, 0 for his last five, and 0-for-1 since returning from a month in the minors. Nine days ago he got nicked for seven runs in less than five innings against the Twins, and before being demoted he'd been tagged for 20 earned runs over his previous 14 2/3 innings. On the season Greene has allowed 83 hits, including 11 homers, in 73 innings, while compiling a very mediocre strikeouts/walks ratio of 46/22.
Detroit is 6-8 in Greene's starts, with the totals splitting 7-7.
This will be Green's first-ever start against Seattle, and while we usually give the pitcher an edge in situations like this, we're not too sure about that in this spot.
Walker (7-7, 4.84) is eight-for18 on quality starts, but 0 for his last two. Nine days ago the Angels got him for seven runs – six earned – in five innings, and just before that these Tigers bit him for five runs in six innings. However, just prior to that Walker was on a nice run, with six quality starts in seven outings. On the season Walker has allowed 104 hits, including 16 ding-dongs, through 102 innings, but his K/BB ratio is pretty good, at 100/27.
The Mariners are 9-9 in Walker's starts, with the OVERS going 9-8.
That start two weeks ago, in which he gave up three homers, is Walker's only career outing against Detroit.
Tuesday's Batting Splits
Seattle ranks dead last in the Majors against right-handed pitching this season with a .230 team batting average, and 27th with a .296 team on-base percentage.
Detroit, meanwhile, ranks No. 1 against righties with a .279 average and No. 1 with a .332 OBP. And those numbers haven't suffered with Miguel Cabrera sidelined.
Ballpark Totals Factor
The OVERS are 26-21 in games played at Comerica Park this season, which have averaged 9.1 runs per.
Detroit is playing without slugger Miguel Cabrera (15 HR, .456 OBP), who's on the DL with a strained calf. The Tigers are 6-7 since Miggy went down, while the totals, somewhat surprisingly, have skewed OVER by a 9-4 margin, as Detroit has averaged 5.2 RPG.
M's-Tigers Tuesday Free Picks
We'll give Walker the check mark in the pitching match-up, but Detroit owns a big edge with the sticks. And while we would usually side with the pitching advantage, we believe the value on tonight's betting line resides with the home dog. Also, both these bullpens rank in the bottom third in baseball, so we're thinking OVER.
MLB Picks: Tigers +118 at 5Dimes and OVER 9.5 runs (+101) at Pinnacle