MLB Pick: Total Value Play of the Day Monday

LT Profits Sports Group

Monday, June 3, 2013 4:00 AM UTC

Monday, Jun. 3, 2013 4:00 AM 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 Monday.

Look for a lower scoring game than the total suggests Monday night when Erik Bedard and the Houston Astros (20-37, 11-16 away) pay a visit to Joe Blanton and the Los Angeles Angels (25-32, 14-16 home) in the final game of a four-game series from Angel Stadium in Anaheim, CA at 10:05 ET.

The posted total at Pinnacle Spots is 8½ for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at a positive +101.

Almost unbelievably, the last place Astros are aiming for a four-game sweep here over an Angels team with one of the highest salaries in baseball, and Houston has now won five straight games and is 10-7 since a 10-30 start. Now, the Astros may or may not finish off that sweep, but we are more interested in the total in this contest.

Granted, the ‘under’ is not the first thing that comes to mind in regards to tonight’s two starting pitchers, but both have actually been improving lately and both can take advantage of a couple of offenses that have struggled all year vs. pitchers of tonight’s throwing orientation.

The southpaw Bedard is still winless in nine starts in a Houston uniform, going 0-2 with a whopping seven no-decisions in nine starts. His overall key numbers are not good either as he has a 5.32 ERA and 1.61 WHIP, but Bedard appears to have turned a corner as he has allowed exactly two earned runs in each of his last four starts.

Although Bedard tossed seven scoreless innings while allowing only three hits the last time he faced the Angels, we are not sure how relevant that is because that outing came two years ago. What has been relevant in the here and now though has been how badly the Angels have been struggling vs. left-handed pitchers all season, batting a measly .218 while averaging 3.43 runs per nine innings against them.

Bedard can take advantage of that now that the lefty is starting to regain the form that made him one of the better pitchers in the American League while he was with the Baltimore Orioles for quite a few years.

Blanton has even uglier numbers as he lost his first seven decisions as a member of the Angles and is currently 1-8 with a 5.94 ERA and 1.77 WHIP. Like Bedard though, Blanton may have also turned a corner as the portly right-hander had his second consecutive Quality Start last Tuesday vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers, albeit in a losing effort as the Angels gave him no run support in a 3-0 defeat.

Blanton now gets a chance to continue his improvement vs. a Houston offense that is batting only .234 vs. right-handed pitchers this season while averaging 3.77 runs per nine innings against them. One of Blanton’s better efforts earlier this season came in Houston when he held the Astros to three runs in 6.1 innings in another unlucky loss, this time by a 3-1 score.

Look for both pitchers to continue their positive regression and for this contest to stay ‘under’ on Monday.


MLB Pick: Astros, Angels ‘under’ 8½ (+101)

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