MLB Picks: Brewers vs. Giants Series Report

Darin Zank

Monday, August 5, 2013 12:36 PM UTC

Monday, Aug. 5, 2013 12:36 PM UTC

The defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants have played themselves into a serious hole. Is there still time for the Giants to get back in the National League wild-card race?


8th August
Thursday's Series Finale

By: Ron Patrick


Milwaukee grabbed Game 3 of this series Wednesday night 6-1, scoring four times in the eighth, with help from a throwing error by losing pitcher Madison Bumgarner, and twice in the ninth to erase a 1-0 deficit.

The Brewers won as +175 underdogs on Wednesday's MLB betting line, and the game slipped OVER its total of 6.5 when Milwaukee's Martin Maldonado singled home a run with two outs in the top of the ninth.

So the Brew Crew, which is 5-1 against San Francisco this season, will go for the series victory, while the Giants will try to salvage a split, when the teams meet Thursday afternoon (3:45 pm ET). 

Looking for a breakdown of today's games? Read our Daily MLB Betting Lines & Odds Report!

Thursday's Betting Odds 

As of Thursday morning most MLB odds boards were listing San Francisco and Tim Lincecum at around -165 over the Brewers and rookie Donovan Hand, with a total of seven.


Thursday's Pitching Match-Up 

Tim Lincecum (5-11, 4.43) is 10-for-22 on quality starts this season, and four for his last five. Most recently he held the Rays to one run through seven innings, and just before that he limited the Cubs to two runs through seven innings, with 10 strikeouts. 

Over his last 11 starts Lincecum has allowed more than three ER just twice, and, of course, threw that no-hitter against the Padres three weeks ago. 

On the season Lincecum has given up 126 hits in 134 innings, walked 52 and struck out 142.

San Francisco won six of Lincecum's first eight starts this year, but has lost 12 of his last 14 outings. A good part of that recent slide, though, can be attributed to poor run support. 

This will be Lincecum's first start vs. Milwaukee since May of last year, when he gave up three ER in five innings of a 6-4 Giants loss.  

Hand (0-3, 3.60), still searching for his first ML victory, will be making his seventh start, to go along with 12 relief appearances this season. So far he's 1-for-6 on quality starts, although he's pitched a little better than that ratio might indicate. Last time out he gave up three runs in seven innings vs. Washington, and over his last three starts he's given up eight ER and 20 hits in 17 innings. He's also, however, been tagged for five dingers over his last two starts.

For the season Hand has allowed 52 hits in 50 innings, walked 10 and struck out 25. 

Milwaukee is 1-5 in Hand's starts this season. 

This will be Hand's first-ever appearance vs. the Giants.

Earlier this year, pitching in relief at AAA Nashville, Hand went 2-1 with a 3.18 ERA, walking nine and striking out 32 in 28 innings. 

Our Take on Thursday's Game

Other than a burp against the Reds a couple weeks ago Lincecum has been pitching rather well as of late. So we're leaning toward San Francisco for Thursday's game. But that price is a bit steep, so we'll go with another run-line play on the Giants for our free MLB pick for today. 

MLB Pick: Take San Fran at the +145 on the run line offered at MatchBook.


7th August
Wednesday's Game Three

By: Ron Patrick


Milwaukee evened this series at a game apiece with a 3-1 victory Tuesday night, behind a quality outing from Wily Peralta and 2 2/3 shut-out innings from the bullpen.

The Brewers beat Matt Cain Tuesday night as +160 post-time dogs, and the game played UNDER its total of seven. 

San Francisco is 2-for-22 with RISP through the first two games of this series.

Milwaukee, meanwhile, has been held to three runs or fewer in six of its last seven games.

The teams meet for Game 3 of this four-game series by McCovey Cove Wednesday night (10:15 pm ET). 

Wednesday's Betting Lines 

As of Wednesday morning most books were chalking San Fran and Madison Bumgarner at MLB odds of -225 over the Brewers and Marco Estrada, with a total of seven.


Wednesday's Pitching Match-Up 

Bumgarner (11-6, 2.69) is an impressive 16-for-22 on quality starts this season, and working on a string of nine QS in a row. Last time out he held Tampa to one run through seven innings, striking out 11, and over his last nine starts he's allowed 11 ER and 55 baserunners (hits + walks) in 64 innings.

For the season Bumsie has permitted 101 hits in 147 innings, walked 42 and whiffed 146. 

San Francisco, a team that's 12 games under .500 overall this season, is 13-9 in Bumgarner's starts. And 17 of Bumsie's 22 starts have played UNDER on the totals.

This will be Bumgarner's first start this season against Milwaukee; last year, in two starts vs. the Brewers, Bumgarner allowed two ER and 11 hits in 14 2/3 innings, walking two and striking out 15. The Giants won both those games.

Estrada (4-4, 5.32) will come of the DL (hamstring) to make his first start in two months Wednesday night. So far this season he's just 4-for-12 on quality starts, but somehow Milwaukee has won seven of his 12 starts. Estrada has allowed 76 hits, including 14 homers, in 69 1/3 innings, walked 18 and struck out 62. 

Estrada has allowed at least four ER in half his starts this year. And in three recent re-hab starts in the Minors he allowed nine runs in eight innings. 

This will be Estrada's first start against San Francisco since May of last season, when he pitched one inning before injuring his leg running out a base hit. 

Our Take on Wednesday's Game 

Bumgarner owns a huge advantage in the pitching match-up, and the Brewers lineup is pretty punchless without Braun and Ramirez. On top of that, Milwaukee is a ML-worst 9-24 vs. lefties this year. But that price is just too prohibitive. So we'll go with the Giants on the run line for our free MLB picks tonight. 

Pick: Take San Francisco minus the run and a half at the +100 offered at The Greek.


6th August
Tuesday's Game Two

By: Ron Patrick


San Fran grabbed Game 1 of this series Monday night 4-2, breaking a 1-1 tie with three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning. 

The Giants won Monday as -160 favorites on the MLB odds, and the game played UNDER its total of seven. 

So San Francisco goes looking for a fifth win in seven games when the teams meet for Game 2 of this series Tuesday night (10:15 pm ET).

Tuesday's Betting Odds 

As of Tuesday AM most baseball sportsbooks were listing San Fran and Matt Cain at around -170 over Milwaukee and Wily Peralta, with a total of seven.


Tuesday's Pitching Match-Up 

Matt Cain (7-6, 4.57) has had a rough 2013, but he's been better as of late. Last time out he held the Phillies to one run through eight innings, and over his last three starts he's given up four ER and 16 hits in 20 innings. 

For the season Cain is 11-for-22 on quality starts, has allowed 111 hits in 132 innings and owns a 121/44 strikeouts-to-walks ratio. 

The Giants lost Cain's first five starts this year, but have gone 10-7 in his outings since then. 

In his one start this year vs. Milwaukee Cain got ripped for seven runs in six innings of a 7-2 San Francisco defeat back in April. 

Peralta (7-11, 4.57) is only 8-for-23 on quality starts this year, and 0 for his last two. Last time out he gave up three ER in five innings in a loss vs. the Cubs, and just before that the Rockies got him for five ER in less than four innings of another Brewers defeat. However, prior to that Peralta had been in a groove, allowing just one ER through four starts, covering 29 1/3 innings. 

For the season Peralta has given up 138 hits in 130 innings, walked 52 and struck out 84.

Milwaukee is 10-13 in Peralta's starts this year. 

In his one start this year against San Francisco Peralta got nicked for five ER and seven hits in four innings of a game the Brewers eventually won 10-8 back in April. 

Our Take on Tuesday's Game 

We give Cain the edge in the pitching match-up, based on recent performances, and the Giants still think they've got life in the NL wild-card race. So we're leaning toward San Francisco. But we're not big fans of that price, so we'll gamble a little and go with the Giants on the run line for our free MLB picks for Tuesday. 

Pick: Take San Francisco at the +135 on the run line.


5th August
Monday Series Opener

By: Ron Patrick


San Fran will try to get something started when it hosts the Milwaukee Brewers for the opener of a four-game series at AT&T Park Monday night, starting at 10:15 p.m. ET. How do we handicap this series? 

Brewers-Giants Betting Lines

As of Monday morning, most baseball sportsbooks were listing San Francisco at Chad Gaudin at around -155 over Milwaukee and Tyler Thornburg, with a total of seven.

Also, MLB odds are chalking the Giants at -280 to win this series, with the Brewers getting +230.


Brewers-Giants Series Set-Up

San Francisco just dropped two of three games at Tampa Bay over the weekend, losing Sunday's series rubber match 4-3.

At 49-61 the Giants are 12 games behind the first-place Dodgers in the NL West, and 11 games behind Cincinnati in the fight for the second NL wild-card spot.

Milwaukee just lost two of three games at home to Washington over the weekend, staving off the sweep with a come-from-behind 8-5 victory Sunday.

So the Brew Crew, at 47-64, is a long way back in the playoff races, and has taken to playing a lot of youngsters as they've fallen out of contention.

In the only previous meeting this season between these teams the Brewers swept three games from the Giants in Milwaukee back in April.

Monday's Pitching Match-Up

Read today's Daily Pitching Report for a breakdown of the day's pitching picks.

Gaudin (5-2, 2.64), by our tough standards, is 5-for-9 on quality starts this year, and three for his last five. Last time out, Gaudin held the Phillies to one run through seven innings, and over his last five outings he's allowed more than one run just once.

Since joining the starting rotation back in June, Gaudin has allowed more than two runs just twice.

On the season, Gaudin has given up 64 hits in 81 2/3 innings, walked 29 and struck out 69.

In his one appearance this year against Milwaukee, back in April, Gaudin threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings of relief, walking none and striking out three.

Thornburg (1-0, 2.22) will be making his second start of this season, to go along with six relief appearances. His last time out Thornburg threw six scoreless innings vs. the Cubs, allowing four hits and striking out six in a 3-2 Brewers victory. And for the season Thornburg has allowed just six ER and 21 hits in 24 1/3 innings, walked eight and struck out 17.

This will be Thornburg's first-ever start vs. San Francisco.

Pitching at AAA Nashville earlier this year Thornburg went 0-9 with a 5.79 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP.

Brewers-Giants Statistically Speaking

Milwaukee ranks 22nd in the Majors in team OBP at .309 and 22nd in scoring at 3.9 runs per game.

San Francisco ranks 15th in OBP at .317 and 24th in scoring at 3.8 RPG.

Brewers-Giants Betting Trends

San Francisco is 27-27 at home this season.

Milwaukee is 20-33 on the road this year.

Brewers-Giants Personnel Update

Milwaukee is, of course, playing without the suspended Ryan Braun, and Aramis Ramirez is on the DL with a sore knee.

San Francisco started 28-22 this season, but since OF Angel Pagan went on the DL back in late May it has gone 21-39.

Our Take on Monday's Game

We give the Giants the edge in the pitching match-up. They've still got a little more to play for than Milwaukee and -relatively speaking- they're healthier. So we'll go with San Francisco for our Monday free MLB picks.

MLB Pick: Take the Giants at the -155 offered at William Hill

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