MLB Picks: Embrace Underdog Royals in ALCS Game 1 vs Blue Jays

Charles Stark

Friday, October 16, 2015 12:12 PM UTC

Friday, Oct. 16, 2015 12:12 PM UTC

In the AL we now have the matchup that everybody was hoping for when the Blue Jays take on the Royals. Toronto is favored to win, but I would not be surprised to see KC head to the World Series.

MLB odds
MLB odds makers have made Toronto a pretty solid favorite in this first game and right now the line across the board is over -120 on them. This gives us some good value though on a very good Kansas City team who I will take as the value play today. For my MLB pick of the day I will take the Royals on the plus money line, and right now there is good value at 5Dimes where you get them at +118.


Toronto Blue Jays
Marco Estrada gets the game one start and comes in with a 3.13 ERA, 1.04 whip, 131 strikeouts, and a 13-8 record. He pitched very well in his one appearance in the American League division series allowing just one run off of five hits in just over six innings. Against Kansas City this season he has pitchee decently allowing four runs off of 12 hits in just over 12 innings of work for a 2.92 ERA and the Royals hitting .245 against him. His overall numbers go up just a little bit on the road but overall he has been very good this season.

Offensively Toronto hits .267 as a team, averages 5.49 runs, and have in OPS of .794. Their runs per game and their OPS are ranked first in all of major league baseball and their batting averages ranked third. They are on arguably the best offense in baseball but I think they have an interesting matchup today against a pitcher that they haven't had a lot of success against. Also, I think going against them are two things, first, they just won an extremely emotional game five, and second, if they get to that starter they have to face a very solid relief pitching staff, one of the best in baseball.


Kansas City Royals
Edinson Volquez takes the mound for Kansas City and comes in with a 3.55 ERA, 1.31 whip, 155 strikeouts, and a 13-9 record. He pitched somewhat okay in his one appearance against Houston allowing three earned runs off of five hits in just over five innings. He has the kind of stuff that could cause a team like Toronto a little bit of trouble because he has good movement on all of his pitches. His numbers are a bit better at home where he is 8-4 with a 3.48 ERA. Also, against Toronto this season he has pitched well in two appearances allowing just three earned runs off of nine hits in just over 11 innings of work for 2.38 ERA and the Blue Jays hitting .220 against him.

Offensively the Royals hit .268 as a team, average 4.49 runs per game, and have in OPS of .735. Most of their offensive stats are ranked in the upper part of the league or in the top 10, and they hit extremely well at home. I think they should be able to get some production against Estrada and it seems like they have some momentum after their win against Houston.

To me it is about value, as I actually really like the Toronto Blue Jays. In fact, I'm a little bit of a bigger fan for them that I am the Royals, but this is not about fandom it is about value and today the value falls on the Royals. I recommend for one of your MLB picks today to go ahead and take a very good home team to get the win against the popular team in the Toronto Blue Jays. This is going to be a fantastic series.

MLB Pick: Kansas City +115 at The Greek

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