MLB Betting Pick: Sale & The Red Sox Sail by Orioles on Sunday

Chris Sale

Sunday, June 4, 2017 2:02 PM GMT

It is the series finale for long time rivals Boston and Baltimore and those betting baseball are well aware the four-game set has tilted towards Orioles, who have won have two of the first three.

Boston Red Sox vs Baltimore Orioles

For a second straight day we have another stellar pitching matchup and every pitcher and player should be available as both teams have an off day on Monday.  Beating the MLB odds is in the details, so let's dig to find what we need.

 Pitching Matchup - Sale vs. Tillman

After a sensational start, Chris Sale (6-2) ERA sits a season-high 2.77, which is fabulous by any measure. The left-hander can be forgiven for being too pumped in his previous outing, returning to Chicago to face his old team. That is two straight below average outings for Sale, who leads the majors with 110 strikeouts in just 78 innings. He's still has the mid-to-upper 90's fastball, but he's made a conscious effort to pitch to contact earlier in counts to lengthen his starts. The Boston big man is 3-2 with a 2.92 ERA against the Orioles.

If you have watched Chris Tillman (1-2, 5.87 ERA) in five starts since missing April with shoulder woes, it could hardly be more obvious he is searching. Tillman claims the should is not a problem, yet something is up. During his career, like many hurlers, he walks around the mound, fidgets with the baseball and is a slow worker when not in rhythm. Permitting a .323 batting average along with 1.87 WHIP is evidence of something is amiss. Maybe Tillman will find to a 'U2' of sorts and find what he's looking, as he is 10-3 2.95 ERA when facing the Red Sox.

 

Boston Offense Has to Work to Score, Baltimore Still Leaning on Deep Shots

Nobody was going to just step in and replace David Ortiz in the middle of the lineup, but nobody would have thought at this juncture the Red Sox would be last in the American League in home runs either. Boston is still productive at 4.8 runs per contest, just doing it a different way and a big part of the success is the team ranking third in on-base percentage. With Tillman's struggles, being patient and making him throw strikes is a great strategy for BoSox hitters.

After leading the AL in home runs a season ago, the Orioles have slipped to 6th thus far. That does not mean Baltimore is not capable of going off and parking several baseballs over fences in the next week or two and get back in the top 3 in the league, which is where they usually are under manager Buck Showwalter. Chances are against Sale, the Birds will have to manufacture runs.

 Betting Odds, History and Bullpen Numbers

The opening odds had Boston at -155 and they almost immediately shot up to -175 with total of 8.5. The O's holds a 13-12 advantage over Boston in the last few years and the UNDER is 12-11-2. Two very good bullpens that are both ranked in the Top 5 in the AL, but the Red Sox get the nod overall, ranked third in batting average allowed and first in fewest walks given up.

 

The Winner Is...

For MLB picks, I could rattle off a half dozen angles why Baltimore and Tillman should win this contest. Yet, I cannot look past how Tillman and Sale are throwing and I have this sweet system. When AL underdogs with a money line of +100 or higher, have a starting pitcher whose ERA is 5.70 to 6.20 and his ERA 7.50 or higher over his last three starts, they are 13-54 since 2013.

Free MLB Play: Boston -1.5Best Live Offered: at 5Dimes

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