MLB Pick: Underdog Value Play Tuesday

LT Profits Sports Group

Tuesday, July 1, 2014 4:00 AM GMT

Tuesday, Jul. 1, 2014 4:00 AM GMT

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

There could be a nice upset Tuesday night with a possibly overvalued pitcher facing a potentially undervalued pitcher when Justin Masterson and the Cleveland Indians (39-43, 16-28 away) pay a visit to fellow right-hander Josh Beckett and the Los Angeles Dodgers (48-37, 22-21 home) in the second game of a three-game interleague series from Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, CA at 10:10 ET.

The posted money line at Bet365 has Cleveland as a road underdog for this contest at current odds of +132.

These teams met for the first time since 2008 last night, and the Dodgers prevailed 1-0 with Dan Haren out-dueling Corey Kluber, much to our delight as we were on the ‘under’. Thus the Dodgers have come all the way back from a bad start to now take over the first-place lead in the National League West by one-half game on this July 1st over the San Francisco Giants, who at one point had the biggest lead of any division leader not too long ago!

The Indians meanwhile dropped 7 ½ games behind the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central with Monday’s loss while in third place at four games under .500, and they have lost seven of their last nine contests. Remember that Cleveland was not off to the best of starts last season either before making an improbable run to a wild card spot, so hope is not lost as of yet.

Now, there can be no denying the raging form that Beckett is in for the Dodgers. After all, he pitched a no-hitter vs. the Philadelphia Phillies on May 25th and he has tossed 14 scoreless innings over his last two starts vs. the Cardinals and Padres respectively, giving him four scoreless outings in his last seven starts while allowing three runs or less in all seven outings.

That still only gets Beckett to 5-4 for the season, although he does have a stellar 2.11 ERA and 1.00 WHIP. However, Beckett does not grade out nearly as well sabremetrically, as he has benefitted greatly by allowing a low .231 BABIP and he has been vulnerable to the long ball with 11 home runs allowed already, all leading to a more ordinary 3.77 FIP. Even Beckett’s 0.8 WAR is not what you would expect from someone with his surface numbers.

Beckett is facing a Cleveland lineup batting a mediocre .252 but averaging a good 4.51 runs per nine innings vs. right-handed pitchers overall this season, thanks to ranking a commendable 12th in the Major Leagues with 74 home runs, making them a potentially unfavorable matchup for Beckett.

Masterson has been the exact opposite in that he has poor surface numbers of 4-5 with a 5.03 ERA and 1.54 WHIP, but his sabremetric numbers paint a more flattering picture. Masterson has a nice strikeout rate with 85 of them in 93 innings and he has allowed only five home runs in 17 starts, leaving him with a 3.90 FIP and, surprisingly, a 1.0 WAR that is actually higher than Beckett. He has also had a bit of bad luck yielding a .328 BABIP.

And Masterson should appreciate pitching in this pitcher’s stadium where even the home standing Dodgers are averaging only 3.98 run per game this season!

Add this all up and Cleveland seems to present a nice upset possibility on Tuesday.

MLB Pick: Indians +132

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