This game is more important for one team over the other and our MLB handicapper thinks it will make all of the difference. Read on as he makes his MLB Pick for this excellent pitching matchup in interleague action.
In my position as CFO of a company in the Central San Joaquin Valley, I regularly commute to and from the Pacific Northwest and the Bay Area. That makes Coeur d’Alene, ID and Stockton, CA seem more romantic than they really are, of course. That said I have found myself especially stoked about this interleague series between the Giants and Mariners as I know both fan bases intimately, and with the exception of a drunken adventure at O.Co Coliseum, these are the only two MLB ballparks that I have witnessed a game in person. The last game I saw at AT&T Park was Madison Bumgarner’s start in game 5 of the NLCS, when I was privileged enough to take seven of my fellow employees as a treat to the game. It is something to know a pitcher is good and it is another thing when you witness him exhibit a singular will to shut down an opponent. As we know now, that game ended on a walk off home run and grown men screaming like girls all around me. I’ll never forget that excitement and how only the game of baseball could create it; with its rules and procedures seemingly begging for a singular act of pent up aggression to release the stored up energy amongst the crowd.
As I watch the Golden State Warriors clinch the NBA Title, I realize it’s been a damn good few years to be a sports fan in the Bay Area. In addition to this fresh NBA championship, the Giants have won three of the last five World Series, and the 49ers have been solid contenders for the last few seasons as well. You could even add that the businesses in the Bay Area have had quite a run as well... Google, Facebook, Oracle, [My company], and many more have all been killing it for quite some time.
Turning to Seattle, the chip on the shoulder has been wearing off in the last decade with the success of the Seahawks, and for the Millennials, the Sounders. As a sports fan, losing the Sonics is still a fresh wound and recent championships in other sports serve as a reminder of what could have been. Still, there is a place that has never seen the exultation like I saw in Game 5 of the NLCS, and that place is Safeco Field. Sure, we’ve had our perfect game by Felix and won 116 regular season games in a slow grind, but nobody has screamed like a little girl there – at least not me.
Can We Trust King Felix Against Bumgarner?
So here we are, ace versus ace, Bumgarner vs. Felix, each capable of dominating the opposing lineup regardless of any of the previous few games. But one thing is certain, Bumgarner has had his day – I’ve seen it. Felix and the Mariners are still searching for this moment and should be with how their season has started. This is a chance to show the chip on the shoulder is still there for this Seattle team and time is running out for them this season. The crowd should be electric… cross that, the crowd better be electric or we can start fading the M’s for the remainder of the year.
MLB Pick: This pitching matchup is a real treat but motivation should favor Felix at home. The season is in truly in the balance for the M’s and I expect him to be dominant against a Giants lineup that will not have a DH to match Seattle’s. Shop around as you can find Seattle on the money line as low as -140 on the MLB odds at 5Dimes at time of writing. Enjoy the garlic fries.