MLB Picks: Mariners a Tall Cup of Juice vs. A's for Good Reason

Joe Catalano

Monday, August 24, 2015 2:58 PM GMT

A's vs Mariners face off tonight with the M's holding the advantage starting Hisashi Iwakuma at Safeco. See who we like as our betting pick in this showdown. 

Seattle's Game to Win
First pitch is set for 10:10 p.m. ET tonight at Safeco Park in Seattle Washington. According to 5Dimes Sportsbook, the Mariners are a huge betting favorite at -168 and the total for the game is 7 runs at -120. I don't like taking subpar teams at extreme odds, but Seattle has the decisive advantage as both Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz have been hitting well and Iwakuma is an above average pitcher when he's healthy. This is a home run hitters ball park, unlike in Oakland. This is Seattle's game to win.

 

Cruising Along
For me, it's tough to support Nelson Cruz with his past PED usage, but players are regularly tested and they still have to hit the baseball. Hitting the baseball is something that Nelson Cruz is very good at. He had a 40 home run season with the Orioles last season and is about to have another one as he's carried the Mariners squad on his back for most of the season.

Whenever a player has an OBP% of .387, you know that they're elite. Thus far this season, Cruz has 37 HR, 78 RBI, and a .320 BA. If he were on any other team, he would have more runs batted in, but this is the Mariners and there aren't many players on base to knock in.

In the month of August, Cruz has many solo home runs with 10 HR and just 15 RBI. He's also batting .355 as this month has one more week remaining. He's also hit Oakland starter, Felix Doubront, very well for his career, hitting .455 in 11 at-bats with 3 RBI. If PED's didn't enter the conversation, you can say that Nelson Cruz is possibly the best player in the game today.

 

Late Season Rush
Everyone knows the struggles that Robinson Cano has had to go through for most of the season. This was a guy that was a franchise player for the New York Yankees that couldn't hit a home run in the 1st half of the season and couldn't hit for average. Robbie attributed it to breathing problems and acid reflux. This is totally understandable.

Lately, Cano has turned the season around and could amazingly put up good numbers. If you told me that at this point in the season, Cano would have 14 HR, 56 RBI, and a .274 batting average after the rough start, I would've said that you're crazy.

In the month of August, Robbie is hitting .325 with 3 HR, 14 RBI. Folks, I've seen this guy play with the Yankees for a good period of time. He's much better than his statistics indicate and a great fielder. In New York, he was sometimes criticized for dogging it, but Seattle is a lower profile area and look for Cano to keep playing well throughout his career despite  not having a short Yankee Stadium right field porch. He took the money over the Yankee legacy.

Fortunately for Seattle, they can use Cano's services in this game if Iwakuma continues to pitch well. Iwakuma has had 4 quality starts in a row, allowing just 6 runs in 31 2/3 innings. That's dominance and Seattle should be dominant or at least win comfortably tonight.

Free MLB Pick: Seattle Mariners -168 at 5Dimes - 2 UNIT PLAY