MLB Pick: Underdog Value Play Wednesday

LT Profits Sports Group

Wednesday, August 21, 2013 4:00 AM UTC

Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013 4:00 AM UTC

Each day LT Profits Sports seeks an overlay underdog that has a better chance of winning than its odds, offering long term value. Here is their Underdog Value Play for Wednesday.

There could very well be an enormous upset in a Lone Star State Battle Wednesday night when Erik Bedard and the Houston Astros (41-84, 22-41 away) pay a visit to Derek Holland and the Texas Rangers (73-53, 37-27 home) in the final game of a three-game series from Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, TX at 8:05 ET.

The posted money line at Pinnacle Sports has Houston as a humongous underdog for this contest at current odds of +267.

There are currently 31½ games separating the Rangers from a Houston team with the worst record in the majors after Texas has taken the first two games of this series by scores of 16-5 and 4-2 respectively. The offensive outburst by Texas in the opener has become an anomaly as of late though, as the four runs scored last night are a better indication of how the Ranger offense is going right now.

Still, Texas has been able to maintain its first place lead in the American League West by 1½ over the Oakland Athletics thank to a pitching staff that fourth in the American League in team ERA at 3.64. Still, we are not really sold on Holland despite him having a career year

Holland has always been a serviceable pitcher, but he has come out of nowhere this year to post a 2.95 ERA and post 157 strikeouts against just 49 walks in 168 innings, and he comes off of an outing where allowed only two hits in seven scoreless innings vs. the Seattle Mariners despite settling for a no-decision. Remember that we are talking about a pitcher with a career 4.31 ERA here that has never been known for his command.

In a nutshell, we do not feel that Holland is worthy of this price tag regardless of the competition and he was decent but not great when he faced the Astros two starts back, meeting the minimum requirement to qualify for a Quality Start by allowing three earned runs in six innings during  a no-decision that Texas eventually won 5-4.

Now, Bedard is 3-9 with a 4.49 ERA for Houston but he has pitched better than that. When Bedard was touched up for five runs in 4.2 innings by the Oakland A’s last time out, it snapped a streak where he had gone five consecutive starts allowing three runs or less. Remember that Bedard was off to an awful start this year and had an 8.20 ERA on May 1st, but he has allowed three earned runs or less in 14 of his 18 starts since then!

Bedard also has a 3.80 ERA and an excellent 1.17 WHIP in 21.1 innings vs. Texas this season, so he gives Houston value at a monstrous price Wednesday.


MLB Pick: Astros +267

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