MLB Picks: Bet Athletic's Run-Line -1 ½ (+140) vs. Angels

Joe Gavazzi

Wednesday, April 22, 2015 6:28 PM GMT

Wednesday, Apr. 22, 2015 6:28 PM GMT

Here's our professional betting forecast and free MLB picks for tonight, as the Oakland A’s and LA Angels meet for the 3rd time this week in what is an extended 4-game series. 

Oakland A’s (Gray) (-1 ½ R/+140) at LA Angels (Weaver) 10:05 ET
After Oakland won (6-3) on Monday night, the Angels evened the series with a whopping (14-1) victory Tuesday evening. In this evening’s contest, I liked Oakland’s chance to gain a bit of revenge for that embarrassing defeat.  That is especially true, considering the details of this pitching matchup.

In a scenario that is not uncommon these days in MLB, the LA Angels could well be another in a long line of rollercoaster teams, who zig-zag their way by alternating winning and losing seasons.  In 2012, the Angels recorded 89 wins, followed by 78 wins in 2013.  Last year, with everything breaking perfectly for them, the Angels won 98 contests (largely, by beating up on the inferior teams in the American League).  This year, the schedule has not been so kind, as, although the Angels are 6-8, that record would be 4-7 were it not for their 2-1 record against Texas (the only losing team they have faced).   Short-cut handicappers will simply knee-jerk to the winning lifetime mark of Weaver from this mound.  In 130 starts, Weaver is 69-29 from this mound with a 2.71 ERA.  Of equal note is Weaver’s record of 13-9 with a 2.49 ERA in 30 starts vs. Oakland.  Unfortunately, for the Angels’ FORMER ace, that record has nothing to do with his 6.61 ERA THIS SEASON.  The zip is gone from his fastball, leaving him ultimately hittable.  In 3 starts, Weaver has lasted just 16 1/3 IP, allowing 12 runs on 21 hits with only a 9/4 KBB.  That’s good for an ERA of 6.61 in his trio of starts.  Note that since 2010, his ERA has never been higher than 3.59.  But that it has gotten higher each of the last 4 seasons, from 2.41 in 2011 to 3.59 last year.    In short, this is an aging pitcher in decline.  

Quick now … which team has the most wins in the last 3 seasons in MLB?  You are right!  That’s the Oakland A’s, who have 278 wins, good for nearly 93 wins per season.  Skeptics are calling for a decline, I’m not so sure.  Do not expect that decline to happen with Gray on the mound.  This year, Gray has posted a record of 1-0 with a 2.11 ERA through 3 starts with a 0.98 WHIP and 12/3 KBB.  This emerging ace has a 2.58 ERA in 6 starts vs. the Angels.  Last season, Gray had a road ERA of 2.51 with a 1.09 WHIP.  He is solid!

Oakland is a short road favorite in this spot, reflecting the realities of tonight’s starting pitchers.  But, we can turn this into a solid money maker on the run line MLB picks.  Last year, 22 of 29 LA Angel home losses were by 2 or more runs.  This season, in 5 home games, the Angels have gone 1-4, being outscored 25-11.  All four of those home losses have been by 2 or more runs.  Last year, Oakland had 88 victories.  67 of those came by 2 or more runs.  This year, in Oakland’s 7 victories, they have outscored the opposition 53-7.  As a result, every one of those victories has been 2 or more runs.  Play Oakland on the run line at a generous MLB odds underdog price of +1.40 for a Top Play Winner in American League action on Wednesday night.

Free MLB Picks: Oakland Athletics +150 at BetOnline

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