Seek and you shall receive: it’s time for Thursday’s MLB Picks of the Day.
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Both of these teams come into this game with some momentum. The American League East Division leading Boston Red Sox have been dominating all season long with their bats while the Toronto Blue Jays have come on strong as of late and are becoming actual contenders in this division.
The Blue Jays were the expected division winners at the beginning of the season and they might actually live up to that billing if they continue to keep on winning. Toronto had recently gone on an 11 game winning streak earlier in the month.
The Blue Jays send Yankee castoff, Chien-Ming Wang (1-0, 2.18), to the mound and he’s been nothing short of spectacular with his brief stint with the Jays.
Wang has come out of nowhere to pitch 13 1/3 consecutive innings and not allow a run. Before injuries and a loss of confidence occurred, this was a pitcher that had two consecutive 19 win seasons for the Yankees in the mid-2000’s.
Wang may have raised his level of play at the proper time as Boston starter Jon Lester (7-4, 4.57) has been hit hard lately.
Lester has pitched 3 forgettable consecutive starts in which he’s allowed 17 runs and 26 hits in 15 1/3 innings. Luckily, he plays for possibly the best offense in the majors in Boston.
Boston is coming off of a 5-3 victory over the Colorado Rockies in which they held Cargo homerless. Michael Cuddyer hit 2 home runs off of the Sox, but the Boston offense was resilient as Shane Victorino continued his hot hitting.
Victorino has managed a run batted in during 4 out of his last 5 games. In those 5 games, he’s 10 for 22 with 1 HR and 8 RBI. We’re not even taking into account the fact that Dustin Pedroia (.318) and David Ortiz (.319) are both tearing the cover off of the baseball.
Wang has pitched well, but hasn’t been productive for a long enough period of time. This should be a close game, but I’m siding with the Red Sox.
MLB Pick: Boston -170 at Bet365
Dodgers manager, Don Mattingly, has stated that Matt Kemp will be back in the lineup consistently.
Whether it’s a hamstring or contact issue, Kemp is now ready for action. If he can return to old form, a trio of Adrian Gonzalez, Yasiel Puig, and Matt Kemp could be a deadly one.
Add in the fact that Hanley Ramirez is hitting near .300 and playing like he did with the Marlins, the Dodgers might possibly have a chance of getting back into the playoff race.
Although Los Angeles is still residing in the basement of the National League West Division, they’ve won 5 straight games and this will take some fan pressure off of manager Don Mattingly.
In their last game, the Dodgers finally gave Clayton Kershaw some run support and Yasiel Puig continued his offensive onslaught with a 3 for 4 performance which pushed his average to .435 on the season. In his last 10 games, Puig is 17 for 41. This Cuban sensation is the Dodgers present and future as he’s selling out all of their merchandise with his name.
Both Jonathan Pettibone (3-3, 4.14) and Zack Greinke (3-2, 4.22) have been inconsistent, but are coming off of exceptional performances. That said, you have to give Greinke the nod with experience and home field advantage.
There should be a considerable amount of hitting in this game as the offenses have been hot as of late and these are two very hittable pitchers.
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Good Luck, everyone!