Free MLB Pick: Angels Value Pick At Small Price vs. Rays

Jason Lake

Sunday, May 8, 2016 2:00 PM UTC

Sunday, May. 8, 2016 2:00 PM UTC

The Tampa Bay Rays have already taken the first two games of their series against the Los Angeles Angels. But they'll be the underdogs on Sunday's MLB odds board.

Thirty games is not that big of a sample size when you're betting on baseball. So maybe the Los Angeles Angels (13-17, -5.46 units) aren't really all that bad. They did sweep the Kansas City Royals just a couple weeks ago. But the Angels have lost six of eight since, including the first two games of their three-game set against the visiting Tampa Bay Rays (14-14, -1.24 units).

The MLB odds are in L.A.'s corner this time. As we go to press, the Angels are favored between -119 and -130, depending on where you shop. Which is important, because Los Angeles might be a value pick at that smaller price. The Rays have called up second-year northpaw Matt Andriese to start Sunday's game (3:35 p.m. ET); he'll be matched up against sophomore righty Nick Tropeano.


Fear and Ignorance
Right off the bat, we check in with the baseball nerds at FiveThirtyEight, who have Los Angeles winning Sunday's game 55 percent of the time. Plug that percentage into our ultra-suave SBR Betting Odds Converter, and you get -122. So there could be some value in betting the Angels. Of course, if you're a Rays fan, this might encourage you to bet on Tampa Bay at the best price on the board.

If you're going with Tampa, you're putting your faith in Andriese (4.14 FIP). That's not necessarily a bad thing. Andriese wasn't quite able to crack the starting rotation this spring after making eight starts as a rookie in 2015; the Rays split those games 4-4 for a tiny 0.13 units of profit. This will be Andriese's 2016 debut with the parent club after posting a healthy 2.17 FIP in six starts with the AAA-Durham Bulls. The rose goes in the front, big guy.


Fantasy Corner
Tropeano (4.78 FIP) is a bit of a crapshoot himself. The Angels have dropped three of his five starts this year for a loss of 1.08 units; Tropeano didn't make it into the sixth inning in any of those games. Not that Andriese is expected to go deep into Sunday's game either, not with the Rays keeping their starters on a short leash.

How about a reliever for your fantasy team, then? Jose Alvarez (4.05 FIP lifetime) should be available for the Halos, he's owned by almost nobody in ESPN leagues, and Alvarez might bogart a save or even a win with closer Huston Street (strained left oblique) still on the 15-day DL. Meanwhile, let's fade the minor-league call-up and give the Angels a spin with our MLB picks. They're probably not going to be profitable over the course of the season, but that's not our problem. Enjoy the game, and may the sphere be with you.

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Free MLB Pick: Angels -119
Best Line Offered: at WagerWeb
Record: 7-5 ML, 1-0 Totals (+3.08 units)

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