MLB Picks: Angels vs. Dodgers Freeway Series Coverage

Darin Zank

Monday, May 27, 2013 2:47 PM UTC

Monday, May. 27, 2013 2:47 PM UTC

In a meeting of two of the more disappointing teams in baseball so far this season the Angels and Dodgers get together for their annual Freeway Series, beginning with games at Chavez Ravine.

The Dodgers took the second game of this series Tuesday night 3-0, getting a complete-game, two-hit shut-out from rookie lefty Hyun-Jin Ryu.

The Blue Crew won as -125 first-pitch favorites on the MLB betting line, and the game never threatened its OVER/UNDER of 8.5.

So now that the Dodgers have taken the first two games of this Freeway Series at Chavez Ravine, the teams move down the I-5 to Anaheim for games Wednesday (10 pm ET) and Thursday. 

On a couple injury notes Anaheim's Josh Hamilton missed Tuesday's game with a sore back, and his status for Wednesday is uncertain, while LA's Matt Kemp left Tuesday's game after getting hit by a pitch, and is similarly questionable for Wednesday.  

Dodgers-Angels Wednesday Betting Lines

Most baseball books we consulted Wednesday morning opened the Angels with Jered Weaver at around -180 over the Dodgers with Chris Capuano, then dropped that price about a nickel, to around -175.


Wednesday's Pitching Match-Up 

Weaver (0-1, 4.91) will be making his first start since going on the DL back in April with a fractured non-throwing elbow. He's started just twice this season, holding the Reds to one run through six innings, then giving up five runs in five innings in the game he got hurt vs. the Rangers. 

Weaver last pitched against the Dodgers two seasons ago, when he held them to two ER through 15 innings, covering two starts. But only a couple Dodgers remain from the lineups he faced in those games. 

Coming off the DL it's a good bet Weaver won't go too far Wednesday night.

Capuano (1-3, 5.60) is two-for-five on quality starts this season. He started poorly, giving up 10 runs through his first two starts, then held the Marlins and Braves to a combined two runs through 13 2/3 innings. But last time out he reverted to earlier form, giving up five ER in five innings vs. the Cardinals. 

For the season, including a couple of relief appearances, Cappy has allowed 31 hits through 27 1/3 innings, walked nine and struck out 22. 

Last year Capuano started twice against the Angles and performed well, holding them to three ER in 12 innings. The Dodgers split those two games. 

Our Take on Wednesday's Game 

We're not sure who's going to win Wednesday's game. We're leery of Weaver making his first start off the DL, and Capuano hasn't done enough to impress us into a play. So instead, for our free picks for Wednesday, we'll look toward the total, and go with the OVER, figuring the 24th and 25th-ranked  bullpens might have a lot to say about the outcome of this game. 

MLB Pick: Take the OVER eight runs at the -107 offered at MatchBook.



28 May
Tuesday's Game Two

By: Ron Patrick


The Blue Crew won the opener of this Freeway Series Monday night 8-7, rallying from a 6-1 deficit with help from a four-run fifth inning. LA banged out 13 hits, including six doubles, and got five innings of one-run pitching from the bullpen. 

The Dodgers won as +110 home dogs on Monday's MLB betting line, and the game flew OVER its total of seven. 

Despite the loss Angels hitter stayed hot; over their last nine games the Halos have scored 66 runs. 

So the Angels are five games under .500 and 8.5 games out in the AL West, while the Dodgers are seven games under .500 and 7.5 games out in the NL West, as the teams head in Tuesday night's game (10:10 pm ET, ESPN). 

Tuesday's Angels-Dodgers Betting Odds 

Most baseball books we consulted opened the Dodgers with Hyun-Jin Ryu at right around -140 over the Angels with Joe Blanton, then dropped that price about a nickel, to around -135.

Also, the total on Tuesday's game opened at 7.5, then got bumped to eight.


Tuesday's Pitching Match-Up

Ryu (5-2, 3.30), a lefty from South Korea, has been tough through his first 10 ML starts. So far Ryu is six-for-ten on quality starts, and two for his last three. Most recently he held the Brewers to two runs through 7 1/3 innings, and over his last three starts he's allowed five runs through 19 innings.

On the season Ryu has given up 57 hits in 62 2/3 innings, walked 22 and struck out 60. The Dodgers have won six of his 10 starts.

This will be Ryu's first-ever start vs. the Angels. 

Blanton (1-7, 6.19), who finished last season as a Dodger, is just two-for-ten on quality starts this year, and has generally just been lousy in his first season for his new team. But he is coming off one of his better efforts of the season, after holding the Royals to two runs through 6 1/3 innings last Thursday. 

But on the season Blanton has given up an alarming 93 hits in 56 1/3 innings, walked 13 and struck out 36.

The Angels lost Blanton's first eight starts this season, before winning his last two. 

Blanton, as a Phillie, started once against the Dodgers and got a win, giving up just two runs through eight innings of a 3-2 Philly victory in LA in July.

The OVER/UNDERS are a combined 14-5 in Blanton and Ryu's starts this season. 

Our Take on Tuesday's Game 

We give the Dodgers with Ryu a huge advantage in the pitching match-up, because he's been very good, Angels hitters haven't seen him before, and Blanton has been terrible. We're a little surprised the price on the Blue Crew isn't higher. So we'll recommend adding the Dodgers to our MLB picks for Tuesday. 

Pick: Take the Dodgers at the -131 offered at BetOnline.  


27 May
Freeway Series Opener

By: Ron Patrick


The teams then head down the 5 to Anaheim for games Wednesday and Thursday.

Angels-Dodgers Betting Odds

As of Monday AM most baseball books were listing Monday's game, which matches former Angel Zack Greinke against CJ Wilson, at right around a pick 'em, with a total of seven.

Angels-Dodgers Series Set-Up

The Angels looked awful through most of the early part of this season, but come into this series riding an eight-game winning streak. Problem is, that only got them to within four games of the .500 mark.

The Anaheimers just swept three games in Kansas City over the weekend, rallying for five late runs to beat the Royals Sunday 5-2.

Angels pitching has led the way recently, allowing just 11 total runs over their last seven games.

So, the Angels, at 23-27, sit in third place in the AL West, nine games behind first-place Texas.

The Dodgers, meanwhile, just dropped two of three games at home to St. Louis over the weekend, losing Sunday's series rubber match 5-3. LA has now been held to three runs or fewer in nine of its last 12 games.

So the Dodgers, at 20-28, sit in last place in the NL West, seven games out of first place.

Last year the Angels took the series from the Dodgers four games to two, with the totals going 1-4-1.

Monday's Pitching Match-Up

Greinke (2-1, 3.48) is just one-for-four on quality starts this season, and 0-for-two since his return from the disabled list. Last time out he got clipped for five runs and nine hits in four innings by the Brewers, after holding Washington to one run through 5 1/3 innings in his first post-DL outing.

For the season Greinke has allowed 21 hits in 20 2/3 innings, walked just four while striking out 15. The Dodgers have won three of his four starts, and all four of his starts have stayed UNDER on the totals. 

This will be Greinke's first start against the Angels since 2010. 

Wilson (4-3, 3.39) is five-for-ten on quality starts this season, and four for his last five. Most recently he held the Mariners to one run through eight innings, striking out 10, and over his last three starts he's allowed just six runs through 21 2/3 innings. 

On the season Wilson has given up fewer hits, 59, than innings pitched, 63 2/3, but while he's also whiffed 60, he's walked 32, which is a bit too many. 

The Angels are 5-5 in Wilson's starts this season. 

Last year Wilson started once against the Dodgers and got the victory, allowing just one run through seven innings of a 2-1 Angels win at Dodger Stadium in June. 

In the battle of the bullpens for this series Angels relievers rank 24th in the Majors with an ERA of 4.21, while the Dodgers pen ranks 25th at 4.30. Those numbers are probably a good part of the reason these two teams are a combined 57-38 on the OVER/UNDERS this season.

Angels-Dodgers Betting Trends

The OVER/UNDERS are 17-9 in games played at Dodger Stadium this season, even though they've only averaged 7.3 runs per. So, the oddsmakers must be under-estimating the totals on Dodgers home games so far


Our Take on Monday's Game

The Angels are hot, or at least warm, while the Dodgers just can't seem to get anything rolling. Also, Angels pitching has been great recently, while the Dodgers are having trouble scoring. So, we'll go with the Angels for our free MLB pick for Monday.

MLB Free Pick: Take the Halos at the -109  

Also, check out my picks on the Subway Series!

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