MLB Picks: Daily MLB Total Plays Tuesday

LT Profits Sports Group

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 4:00 AM UTC

Tuesday, May. 14, 2013 4:00 AM UTC

The LT Profits Sports Group continue their Daily MLB Total Plays series where they take a look at several totals each day where the numbers posted by the sportsbooks simply do not add up.

It was a terrible Monday night for us as we went 0-3 with our three ‘under’ plays as basically nothing went according to plan, and we are now six games below .500 on the year. It was a good day for the ‘over’, which damned our chances for a winning day right there, as it went 7-4 across all MLB games on Monday, bringing ‘over’ to 290-253, 53.4 percent (omitting ‘pushes’) for the season.

We still expect the tide to turn toward the ‘under’ very soon as it almost always does in MLB, so we are not going to change our tactics and just ride this ‘over’ wave out, as it is not as if we are buried at just -7 units this early in the season. We have three more ‘under’ plays for Tuesday.

Seattle Mariners at New York Yankees (7:05 ET)

The posted total at Pinnacle Spots is 7 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -125.

It will be a battle of aces at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx on Tuesday when C.C. Sabathia takes on Felix Hernandez. The Yankees are somewhat surmising leaders of the American League East right now given all of their injured superstars, as they lead the Baltimore Orioles by one game. The Mariners are a semi-respectable 18-20 and in third place in the American League West, six games behind the Texas Rangers.

Of course it helps Seattle’s cause that it has a former Cy Young Award winner in Hernandez that is can count on every fifth day. Fernandez is off to another great start this year as he is 5-2 with a 1.53 ERA and 0.90 WHIP with the league hitting a puny .213 off of him, and has had his usual impeccable command with 56 strikeouts against eight measly walks in 58.2 innings. King Felix has allowed a grand total of three earned runs over his last five starts, covering 38 innings.

Hernandez is 8-5 with a 3.08 ERA in his career vs. the Yankees, but he has loved pitching in Yankees Stadium, going 4-1 with a 1.13 ERA and 0.96 WHIP in the Bronx with 40 strikeouts in 39.2 innings and three scoreless outings of eight innings or more including two Complete Game shutouts, holding New York to a .176 batting average in those five starts.

The Yankees have held the fort much better than many expected with Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Curtis Granderson and Mark Teixeira all on the Disabled List since the beginning of the season. Granderson could make his seasonal debut in this game tonight, but the others are all a long way off from returning. Still, the Yankees have hung in with their pitching as the starters have a cumulative 3.54 ERA and they have one of the best closers of all time in Mariano Rivera.

Sabathia may be just 4-3 but he has obviously pitched much better than that, with a 3.23 ERA, 1.21 WHIP and 44 strikeouts vs. 13 walks in 53 innings. Sabathia had five Quality Starts in is first seven starts and he was on his way to another one vs. the Colorado Rockies in Denver on Thursday when a long rain delay necessitated his removal after allowing only one run on one hit in four innings.

The southpaw is 12-4 lifetime vs. Seattle with a 2.46 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and a very impressive 122 strikeouts vs. 36 walks in 139 innings. He may have to maintain that kind of form tonight considering his mound opponent.

MLB Pick: Mariners, Yankees ‘under’ 7 (-125)


Cleveland Indians at Philadelphia Phillies (7:05 ET)

The posted total at Pinnacle Spots is 8 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at a positive +102.

This is already the second interleague series this season between these two teams as the Indians swept a brief two-game series in Cleveland two weeks ago. Neither of tonight’s starting pitchers, Jonathan Pettibone of the Phillies or Scott Kazmir of the Indians, appeared in that series so the unfamiliarity of each offense with the opposing pitching staff could contribute in keeping the score fairly down tonight.

In fact, neither league is too familiar with Pettibone considering that he just made his Major League debut on April 22nd. The rookie has given a nice account of himself so far as he is 2-0 in four starts with a respectable 3.63 ERA, and he has yet to allow more than three runs in a game while displaying good command with only six walks against 14 strikeouts in 22.1 innings. He has also gotten batters to hit the ball on the ground with a nice 1.81groundball-to-flyball ratio.

The right-hander could be catching the Indians at the right time too, as they managed a grand total of just one run and 10 hits during a doubleheader vs. the New York Yankees yesterday, and Cleveland is now batting only .233 vs. right-handed pitching over the last 10 games.

Yes, the Indians are still second in the American League Central and only one-half game behind the Detroit Tigers, but the Tribe did feast on some weak competition during a recent 8-1 home stand. Still, the Phillies are only batting .239 as a team while averaging a mere 3.54 runs per game, so it is not as if Cleveland is stepping up in class here as Kazmir gets another opportunity to turn back the clock.

You may recall that Kazmir was one of the most highly touted young pitchers in baseball when he first came up, but for whatever reason, he just lost his command out of the blue, ultimately forcing the Tampa Bay Rays to release him. Kazmir was out of baseball last season before the Indians took a chance on him, and after a rough Cleveland debut, he has allowed two runs or less in each of his last three starts.

That includes a brilliant six innings vs. the Oakland Athletics on Thursday where he allowed one run on a solo homer with 10 strikeouts and not a single walk while throwing 72 of his 103 pitches for strikes! He now gets to face a Philadelphia lineup batting .225 vs. left-handed pitchers while averaging 3.44 runs per nine innings against them.

MLB Pick: Indians, Phillies ‘under’ 8 (+102)


Houston Astros at Detroit Tigers (7:08 ET)

The posted total at Pinnacle Spots is 8½ for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -113.

The Astros had the worst record in the Major Leagues last season at 55-107, so they certainly expected to struggle in their first year ever in the stronger American League this season. Well, things have gone as expected as Houston has the worst record in the majors again so far at 10-29 and it already trails the Texas Rangers by 14½ games in the West Division. The Astros do not expect to generate much vs. Doug Fister of the Tigers on Tuesday.

However, Houston does have possibly its best pitcher on Lucas Harrell on the mound. Harrell had a rather remarkable season last year considering he pitched for a team that won 55 games, as he went 11-11 with a good 3.76 ERA. He is at .500 again this year at 3-3 while pitching for a 10-29 team and he has allowed two runs of less in six of his last seven starts!

Unlike the rest of the Houston staff, Harrell actually keeps the ball down with a very pronounced 3.44 groundball-to-flyball ratio, which should lessen the odds of the Tigers taking him deep often after the Tigers belted out 10 home runs in the first five meetings with the Astros this season, all of them Detroit victories.

The Tigers surprisingly have just a one-half game lead over the Cleveland Indians in the American League Central but they can be expected to widen that gap soon as long as they continue to have good pitching, fulfilling their heavy favoritism to win the division on the preseason odds, because you know that the hitting will always be there.

Fister is 4-1 with a 3.14 ERA and 1.26 WHIP and he has a very good ratio of 33 strikeouts vs. eight walks. Granted he allowed five runs (four earned) on eight hits while only lasting three innings vs. the Washington Nationals on Thursday, but that marked the first time in his seven starts this season that Fister has allowed more than three runs in a game.

He should have continued success tonight vs. a Houston lineup that is batting .229 vs. right handed pitchers this season while averaging 3.51 runs per nine innings against them, including a disgusting .204 average and 2.90 runs per nine vs. righties in the last 10 games.

MLB Pick: Astros, Tigers ‘under’ 8½ (-113)


Record: 11-17, -7.47

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