Each day the LT Profits Sports Group seeks out an MLB total that does not add up and offers the most value that day. Here is their Total Value Play of the Day for Thursday.
While we get that this game is in a pitchers’ ballpark, the posted total still seems very low Thursday night given the body of work of the starting pitchers when right-hander Kyle Kendrick and the Philadelphia Phillies (70-82, 34-40 away) pay a visit to southpaw Robbie Erlin and the San Diego Padres (70-81, 42-32 home) in the final game of a four-game series from Petco Park in San Diego, CA at 9:10 ET.
The posted total at Pinnacle Sports is 7 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘over’ set at a positive +109.
Padres on an ‘over’ Run
Both of these teams are probably happy to see this season drawing to a close as neither club is going anywhere. Sure the Padres are in third place in the National League West, but that is by default in a division that includes the teams with the two worst records in the league (Rockies, Diamondbacks). San Diego has taken two of the first three games of this series and the Pads uncharacteristically enter this game on a 5-1 ‘over’ run.
The Phillies meanwhile have been the worst MLB picks in the National League East, although they do still have a small chance to escape the cellar at 2½ games behind the fourth place New York Mets. Still, this is an aging team with a depleted farm system, which does not bode well for the immediate future of a franchise that had so much success the last 10 years or so prior to last season.
Just Two Quality Starts Last Seven Outings
We feel that neither starting pitcher has done nearly enough to merit a low total like this, not even in Petco. Kendrick is just 9-12 with a 4.72 ERA and a nondescript 1.35 WHIP for Philadelphia, and he has been a bit worse on the road where he is 3-6 with a bloated 5.11 ERA. Yes he comes off of a nice outing at home vs. the Miami Marlins on Saturday where he allowed one run in seven innings, marking the second time in three starts he allowed one run or less.
However, starts like those have been few and far between and those two Quality Starts are Kendrick’s only two such outings in his last seven appearances. In fact Kendrick has now made 30 starts this season and has just 12 Quality Starts overall! Furthermore he has just five Quality Starts out of 14 road starts.
Kendrick does not have a high strikeout rate with only 5.63 per nine innings and he has been prone to giving up the long ball with 24 home runs allowed in 187 innings, which translates to 1.16 home runs per game. That has led to a bad 4.52 FIP and 4.29 xFIP, as well as a below average 0.5 WAR.
Just off of 60-Day DL
So has Erlin done enough to carry this ‘under’ on his own? We think not considering he is making his first start since coming off of the 60-Day Disabled List due to an injury to his left (throwing) elbow. And even before being disabled, Erlin was not exactly setting the house on fire at 3-4 with a 4.89 ERA.
The Padres will almost certainly make a call to the bullpen tonight, and while the San Diego pen has good overall numbers this year (with help for this spacious ballpark), that unit has slumped to just a 4.14 ERA with a terrible 1.54 WHIP over the last 10 games, covering 32 innings.
An ‘over’ Series in San Diego
Finally, although this is a pitchers’ park, someone apparently forgot to tell the Phillies that as it is the ‘over’ that is now 7-1 in the last eight head-to-head meetings in Petco Park.
Given the numbers that these pitchers have put, look for yet another ‘over’ in the series finale from San Diego on Thursday.
MLB Pick: Phillies, Padres ‘over’ 7 (+109)