MLB Picks: AL West Betting Trends Update

Doug Upstone

Wednesday, June 18, 2014 2:15 PM UTC

Wednesday, Jun. 18, 2014 2:15 PM UTC

As of today, the AL West is the only division in baseball which has four teams playing .493 or better baseball, which makes them a delectable choice for MLB picks against opposing teams.

We will give a run down on each club and understand what lies ahead and if they should continue to be thought about for your MLB betting picks.

Oakland Athletics
There has been a few chinks in the A’s armor with a 6-6 record since June 5 and they are presently beating teams by “only” 1.8 per game (as opposed to 2.0 like they have the past month which is incredible when you realize the Giants are second in this category at 0.7... but I digress).

In searching for more flaws, starter Drew Pomerenz, who would be in the minors except for all the starting pitching injuries, broke his right hand (non-throwing) after a bad outing (punched a chair) and is on the DL, presumably further weakening the rotation.

Here is something else: despite being tied for the best record in the big leagues, baseball handicappers like myself following the run differential stats realize Oakland should be seven games better and only a bullpen with the second-worst save percentage in the American League has prevented them from realizing their real potential!

The A’s have a four-game home series with Boston starting Thursday, before traveling to the Mets, Miami and Detroit. The betting odds on Oakland are rising, yet they are very capable of beating them.

Los Angeles Angels
The Angels’ aces and bottom-feeder of the starting staff are preventing Los Angeles from really breathing down Oakland’s neck. Jered Weaver, C.J. Wilson and Hector Santiago all have negative numbers versus the MLB odds, with the Halos 15-23 when this trio starts, for a combined -12.2 units.

The “other guys” have been the difference-makers for the Angels, with Garrett Richards, Tyler Skaggs (on the DL since June 9) and Matt Shoemaker 23-9 (Team record), picking up +13.2 units of profit.

If the studs start coming through, betting the Angels could be a spiritual experience. They open up a six-game homestand with Texas and Minnesota starting Friday, before heading to the Midwest to face Kansas City and the White Sox. Time for the aces to start acting like it.

Seattle Mariners
Like many teams in baseball this season, Seattle has been better on the road than at home. The Mariners will be away at San Diego and Kansas City through the weekend and are 20-14 and +10.4 units in the visitors uniforms.

After this, Seattle is back in coffee-town where they are 17-20 (-6.7). If the M’s can start scoring a few more runs, watch out, as their pitching staff numbers have been stealth-like, rising to the No. 2 spot in the AL in ERA, OBP and OPS.

When the Mariners score, we understand what they are capable of with 16-7 mark in games determined by four runs or more.

Texas Rangers
The Rangers disabled list looks like the summer lines at Universal Studios for rides, yet to the credit of skipper Ron Washington, Texas is hanging around .500.

Betting the Rangers against the sportsbooks has also mostly been a 50-50 proposition. The best opportunities with Texas have been totals, being 20-13 OVER on the road and watch for this one, 14-6 OVER versus left-handed starters.

Texas is in the midst of a playing their three West Coast division partners at their place and should be a live dog in a few spots. Afterwards, it is back to the Lone Star State to take on the Tigers and Twins, with mostly games which could go either way.

Houston Astros
Only six times all season have the Astros been a favorite, thus they have been a better than presumed squad as an underdog in showing a modest profit of 2.9.

The best way to wager on Houston is to pay close attention to their hit total patterns. If they have a couple games of nine or more, they might be primed for upsets in the coming days thanks to their offense.

Conversely, if they post paltry figures like five or less base-knocks two or more times, look to play against the ‘Stros.

Houston should be competitive this weekend with four at Tampa Bay. However, the return trip home might not be a successful one with Atlanta, Detroit and Seattle all heading to Houston.

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