MLB Pick on Athletics, Rangers ‘under’ in Arlington

LT Profits Sports Group

Tuesday, June 23, 2015 3:43 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jun. 23, 2015 3:43 PM UTC

Each day the LT Profits Sports Group seeks out a total that simply does not add up and therefore offers the most value that day. Here is their Total Value Play of the Day for Tuesday.


A matchup of two fine young pitchers could produce an ‘under’ in the Lone Star State Tuesday night when Jesse Chavez and the Oakland Athletics (31-41, 17-21 away) pay a visit to fellow right-hander Chi Chi Gonzalez and the Texas Rangers (37-33, 15-16 home) in the first game of a three-game series from Globe Life Park in Arlington, TX at 8:05 ET in a game available on FOX Sports - Southwest.

The posted total at Pinnacle Sports is 9 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -110.

Can Texas Go From Worst to First?
The Rangers had the worst record in the American League last season at 67-95, but that was a team beset by injuries so improvement was expected. And improve they have as the Rangers are in the mix for the American League West title, entering this contest in second place only three games behind the upstart first place Houston Astros. And Texas would probably be in first place if not for a 15-16 home record!

The Athletics have reached the playoffs each of the last three years but it looks like that streak will come to an end this season as they have been the worst MLB picks in the American League so far at 31-41, although to be fair they remain 10 games behind the Astros despite being in last place, which is not insurmountable with still plenty of baseball remaining.

Chi Chi Rookie of the Year Candidate
The rookie Gonzalez was very highly regarded when he was called up on May 30th, less than two years after being selected in the first round of the 2013 MLB Draft, and he immediately showed why by not allowing a run in his first two Major League starts including tossing a Complete Game three-hit shutout at Kansas City in his second outing! And Chi Chi has not slowed down allowing a grand total of three runs in four starts covering 30 innings.

Thus, Gonzalez is already an American League Rookie of the Year candidate with his 0.90 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and a .173 batting average allowed, and while he will certainly not maintain those kinds of numbers, he should remain solid throughout the year as he is living up to his advance billing. This is already his second appearance vs. Oakland, and he held the A’s to one run on eight hits in seven innings while taking the unlucky 7-0 loss on the road at Coliseum in his third career start, as the bullpen imploded allowing six runs in the eighth inning after he departed.

Chavez Could Sue for Non-Support
The problem for Chi Chi here though is that the Athletics have a starter that can match him pitch-for-pitch in Chavez, who is somehow 3-6 despite owning a 2.52 ERA and 1.09 WHIP, with that ERA ranking sixth in the American League and 12th in the Major Leagues! The irony there is that Chavez began this season in the bullpen making four relief appearances before being inserted into the rotation.

He has sparkled in his 11 starts since then, albeit with not much to show for it in terms of the W/L record due to a lack of run support, and he was stellar in his only career start vs. the Rangers last season tossing seven scoreless innings and allowing one measly hit with eight strikeouts vs. one walk.

Chavez did finally get run support last time out when Oakland beat the San Diego Padres by the unlikely score of 16-2, although he probably did not need it as he was brilliant again allowing one run on three hits with 11 strikeouts in seven innings. He could be facing the Rangers at the perfect time too as Texas is only batting .172 overall while averaging just 2.11 runs over the last five games.

Nice ‘under’ Run
Finally, the ‘under’ is now 16-5 in the Rangers’ last 21 games overall. Additionally, as you would expect, both starting pitchers have fine ‘under’ records as it is a perfect 4-0 on all of Gonzalez’s starts and 7-3-1 in all starts made by Chavez.

Look for those ‘under’ patterns to continue in Arlington here when Oakland visits Texas on Tuesday.
MLB Pick: Athletics, Rangers ‘under’ 9 (-110)

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