The Seattle Mariners & Texas Rangers meet in the rubber game of their three game set on Sunday to see who will take the series win. See where the betting value lies as part of your Sunday MLB Picks.
The Texas Rangers visit the Seattle Mariners in the final game of their three game weekend series in Seattle on Sunday afternoon. In preparing our MLB Picks for this matchup note that we have two lefty’s in Ross Detwiler for the Rangers going against James Paxton for the Mariners. Early odds on Sunday afternoon’s game have the Mariners favored at -166 and the O/U set at 8 runs. It will be a picture perfect afternoon to be in the stands with the temperature forecast at 68F at game time.
Felix Hernandez was dominant in Saturday night’s game, striking out 12 batters on two hits while pitching through the 7th inning of his bobblehead night. Colby Lewis of the Rangers did his best to work around 10 hits while only giving up 3 earned runs himself. The Mariners offense was consistently applying pressure and had men on base all night long against the starting pitching of the Rangers. It was a continuation of Friday night’s game where the Mariners couldn’t break through against Ranger’s starter Yovani Gallardo, as they hit into double plays to end the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th innings.
Looking further into the numbers, it is actually a continuation of the entire season in regards to the Mariner offense. Seattle was dead last in Batting Average for Balls in Play (BABIP) in the MLB at .233 coming into Saturday night’s game. In layman’s terms, they keep hitting the ball right at people. These statistics have a tendency to normalize over time, which I fully expect them to do. Oddly enough, Texas is second to last in the MLB in BABIP, at .241.
It’s going to be tough for the Rangers to turn that statistic around against Paxton; however, as he pitches great at home in Safeco. In 2014, Paxton had a 2.12 ERA and 1.04 WHIP in his home ballpark while going 3-0 in five starts. He was even better in his two games versus the Rangers last year, going 1-1 while accruing a 0.71 ERA and 1.11 WHIP. Yes, he lost a game while only giving up one earned run. Baseball.
Ross Detwiler was in the bullpen last year but is being converted to a starter as part of the shorthanded rotation for the Rangers. An interesting statistic for Detwiler is that he throws fastballs for 78.3% of his pitches, which was fifth in the league last year for qualifying pitchers. He’ll have to mix in his curveball more often against the Mariners, as they have a lineup that is above the median at putting that pitch type into play:
Pitch Type Percentages for Batted Balls in Play - Fastball
Dustin Ackley - 70.1%
Robinson Cano - 68.2%
Nelson Cruz - 61.1%
Austin Jackson - 56.9%
Logan Morrison - 56.6%
Kyle Seager - 61.1%
Brad Miller hits - 58.8%
Rickie Weeks - 59.3
Mike Zunino - 60.0%
Looks like the Mariners will have plenty of chances to get that BABIP statistic up on Sunday afternoon.
MLB Betting Verdict
With Paxton being lights out at home and being tough against the Rangers last year, I love his prospects for posting a quality start in this game. I also think the Mariners offense has a chance to string together a few hits and have a big inning or two against the fastball dependent Detwiler, similar to what Oakland did to him on April 8th in a 0-10 loss. I’d shop for the Mariners money line early and try to catch it near the opening MLB odds line of -166, as I expect it to move in favor of the home team quickly.
The MLB Pick: Mariners -175 at YouWager