Mining the Diamond: Home Chalk Wins the Day in Saturday's MLB Picks

Swinging Johnson

Saturday, July 8, 2017 3:26 PM UTC

Saturday, Jul. 8, 2017 3:26 PM UTC

Yesterday we did the splits but Mining the Diamond is back at it, researching the pitching matchups, historical trends, and MLB odds to deliver two top premium picks for Saturday's betting card.

Reds (37-49, -5.0 Units) at Diamondbacks (53-34, +18.0 Units)

* Arizona is  33-13 (+17.4 Units) in home games this season.

* Arizona is 21-8 (+12.5 Units) when the total is 9 to 9.5 this season.

* Arizona is 43-23 (+18.6 Units) against right-handed starters this season.

* Cincinnati is 2-10 (-7.6 Units) on the road when the total is 9 to 9.5 this season.

* Cincinnati is 14-28 (-8.2 Units) in road games this season.

* Cincinnati is 20-27 (-2.1 Units) after a loss this season.

We have to confess we are a bit perplexed by the MLB odds on this matchup. The Diamondbacks broke out of their mini-slump, after getting swept by their NL West rivals the LA Dodgers, with a 6-3 win in the opener of this three-game set with the Reds last night. And it would stand to reason that the vastly superior Snakes would be primed to earn a sweep over the lackluster Reds in order to redeem themselves after dropping three pivotal games to the front-running Dodgers. Factor in that Arizona is sending Taijuan Walker to the hill whose team record is 10-3 (+8.6 Units) in all his starts this season and 8-1 (+7.8 Units) in evening affairs.

The Diamondbacks are 10-4 (+5.5 Units) against the Reds over the last three seasons and 5-2 (+2.7 Units) at Chase Field over the same period. Cincinnati's starter Luis Castillo has an uncharacteristically high WHIP (1.71) when considering his ERA is at a modest, though hardly atrocious, 4.41 on the season. In other words, he's gotten lucky to get out of the jams he has found himself in and eventually those runners on base begin to score. Let's back the Snakes in our MLB picks as the power rating line projects Arizona at -180 and we're getting them for a bargain at -139 at BetOnline.

MLB Pick: Diamondbacks (-139)Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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Royals (44-41, 8.8 Units) at Dodgers (59-29, +16.8 Units)

* Los Angeles is 27-7 (+13.7 Units) in home games after a win this season.

* Los Angeles is 37-11 (+18.2 Units) in home games this season.

* Los Angeles is 24-4 (+12.5 Units) as a home favorite of -175 to -250 this season.

* Kansas City is 5-6 (-0.4 Units) on the road when the total is 9 to 9.5 this season.

* Kansas City is 27-42 (-3.6 Units) as a road underdog of +125 to +175 over the last three seasons.

* Kansas City's starter Ian Kennedy's team record is 5-9 when starting against the Dodgers with an ERA of 4.31 and a WHIP of 1.273.

Big Blue claimed a 4-1 win in the first of three at Dodger Stadium and tonight will be more of the same. Although we are not a huge fan of laying the  1 ½ runs there are times when the opportunity presents itself - like here. LA has won 18.6% of their games by just one run which is a bit below the 20% often bandied about as the statistical average. However, here we have a big-hitting lineup that has produced 453 runs (4th in the majors) versus a team light on offense in Kansas City that has plated only 356 (27th in the majors), which means laying the 1 ½ runs is not such a stretch.

The odds are just about where they should be with LA being dealt at -200 in most shops, so for us, there is no value. However, we believe this to be a mismatch which is why we will back the big home favorite but cut the juice significantly if LA decides to take the evening off.

MLB Pick: Dodgers -1 ½ (+100)Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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