MLB Pick: Total Value Play of the Day Thursday

LT Profits Sports Group

Thursday, June 27, 2013 4:00 AM UTC

Thursday, Jun. 27, 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 Thursday.

Two young pitchers that are both in very good form and who both show loads of promise square off Thursday night when Corey Kluber and the Cleveland Indians (40-37, 16-22 away) pay a visit to the Miguel Gonzalez and the Baltimore Orioles (32-43, 19-21 home) in the final game of a long four-game series from Camden Yards in Baltimore, MD at 7:05 ET in a game televised nationally on MLB Network.

The posted total at Pinnacle Spots is 9 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at a positive +108.

The Indians have taken two of the first three games of this series with the ‘under’ going 2-0-1. Cleveland took the series opener 3-2 on Monday with that game going ‘under’, Baltimore came back to win 6-3 on Tuesday in a game that ‘pushed’ the total and then the Indians won as +133 underdogs last night 4-3 in another ‘under’.

The Orioles remain tied with the New York Yankees, who also lost last night, for second place in the American League East at 3½ games behind the Boston Red Sox. The Indians meantime have second place all to themselves in the American League Central, and they have now surprisingly pulled to within 2½ games of the Detroit Tigers, who were expected to run away with the division entering this season.

Kluber may not be a household name, but fans of Sabremetrics have taken note of the season the youngster is having. Kluber has been particularly sharp over his last three outings while posting a 1.66 ERA and 1.15 WHIP with 15 strikeouts vs. four walks in 21.2 innings. This leaves him at 6-4 with a 3.68 ERA and 1.21 WHIP on the year.

While those numbers are good, he has actually been better than that as besides two bad outings over which he allowed 14 runs on 18 hits in 10.2 innings, he has allowed three runs or less in each of his other 11 appearances! From a sabremetrics perspective, you would probably win a lot of bar bets if you had guessed that Kluber is seventh in the Major Leagues among pitchers with at least 70 innings with his 2.98 xFIP thanks to 69 strikeouts vs. just 13 walks in 71 innings.

Furthermore this is Kluber’s first ever appearance vs. the Orioles, which should make him doubly tough to hit.

As for Gonzalez, he entered the Baltimore starting rotation as a rookie in the middle of last season and proceeded to go 9-4 with a 3.25 ERA and 1.21 WHIP while limiting opponents to a .235 batting average, all while showing amazing poise for a rookie in the face of a pennant race. Gonzalez is 5-3 this year, and he has lowered his ERA to 3.75 after a bumpy start while other key numbers are slightly ahead of last year, as he has a 1.18 WHIP while yielding a.232 average.

Like his mound opponent Kluber, Gonzalez is also in excellent current form as he as posted four straight Quality Starts with a 2.60 ERA, a miniscule 0.87 WHIP and 19 strikeouts against seven walks over those starts. Gonzalez’s 0.9 WAR is the best among Baltimore starting pitchers and he pitched well in his only career start vs. Cleveland allowing two runs on seven hits in 6.2 innings.

We may be getting a glimpse of the future here, and look for both youngsters to shine in a nationally televised ‘under’ on Thursday.


MLB Pick: Indians, Orioles ‘under’ 9 (+108)

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