Hot Bats Make Rays The Right MLB Pick vs. Unsuspecting Angels

Swinging Johnson

Friday, May 6, 2016 12:28 PM GMT

Friday, May. 6, 2016 12:28 PM GMT

The Rays and Angels have an identical winning and losing pattern. But tonight that pattern will be broken and below we analyze this matchup in order to cash in our MLB picks.

2016 MLB Record (17-10, +6.57 units)

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Angels

Tampa Bay Rays (12-14, -3.2 units)
After taking two of three from the AL East leading Baltimore Orioles the Rays gave it back when they dropped two of three to another divisional rival, the Toronto Blue Jays. That series loss was followed by a split with the Dodgers, and Tampa Bay now sits in fourth place in their division, leading only the cellar-dwelling New York Yankees. The Rays offense has been virtually invisible with the 28th ranked team batting average and tied for 26th in runs scored. However, the Tampa bats came alive in their two-game series with the Dodgers where the offense combined for 13 runs and launched four dingers in their 8-5 win over Big Blue on Wednesday night.

Four-year veteran Chris Archer (1-4, 5.01 ERA, 1.58 WHIP) takes the bump for the Rays tonight and appears as though he has remedied whatever was ailing in him in his first four starts when he posted an 0-4 record with a 7.32 ERA. The 2015 All-Star blanked the Orioles tossing six plus innings, allowing five hits and no runs en route to a 2-0 home win in his second to last start. On Saturday he came back with another strong outing in which he tossed six innings of one hit ball but surrendered two earned runs which led to a 4-3 win over the Blue Jays.

Los Angeles Angels (13-15, -3.4 units)
The Angels are four games back of the first-place Mariners and sit in third place behind the Rangers in the AL Central. After dropping four of their last five, Los Angeles rewarded all those who included them in their MLB picks on Wednesday with a 7-3 win in Milwaukee and thus avoided a series sweep. After a dismal start Mike Trout has rocketed out of his early season slump with 18 RBI in his last 13 games. The four-time All-Star had a triple and a home run in the victory over the Brewers on Wednesday night.

LA’s ace Garret Richards was supposed to make the start tonight but he has been scratched due to an unspecified illness. Therefore Cory Rasmus (0-1, 4.40 ERA, 0.91 WHIP) will fill the void and get his first start of the season. Rasmus has not made a start since August of 2015 when the MLB odds makers installed him and the Angels as +125 road dogs to the Dodgers where LA took a 5-3 loss and Rasmus pitched just three innings of two run, three hit work.

 

Betting Analysis
According to Fangraphs, there is no team that swings more often than Tampa Bay but the downside is that the Rays are last in the league in contact rate. But that could be turning around based on their 13 combined runs over the last two games.

As good as the Angels offense has been recently, led by the white hot and ever dangerous Mike Trout, they are still languishing in 23rd place in runs scored and sport a middling team batting average of .246 which ranks them 15th in the league.

The Rays have the decided edge on the mound with Chris Archer rounding into form as well as his comfort level pitching against the Angels where he is 4-1 with an ERA of 2.97 and a WHIP of 1.187. His team's record is 4-1 (+2.9 units) in these starts as well.

The Rays love to swing away and in this instance it could be deadly with their suddenly hot bats against a first-time season starter in Cory Rasmus. We look for Archer to contain the Angels and the Rays to tee off which means Tampa Bay gets our backing here.

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Free MLB Pick: Tampa Bay Rays
Best Line Offered: (no line available as of this writing).

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