Jered Weaver shut down the Orioles last night, and now Matt Shoemaker will try to do the same in Baltimore this evening. Let's break down the available MLB betting odds.
The odds are tight, but for now Ubaldo Jimenez and the Orioles are priced out as -110 favorites at home. You can find the Angels at practically even money at most of the top sportsbooks.
What kind of total do we see on the MLB betting odds board? The O/U is at nine runs, so odds makers are expecting offense to win out tonight, rather than a low-scoring affair like we saw yesterday.
Baltimore Orioles (Jimenez)
Inconsistency has been an issue for the Orioles, as they've alternated losses and wins over their last seven games coming into tonight. They're at 15-18 overall, a disappointing overall record considering the talent level within the ballclub, though we've still got plenty of the season left for things to turn around.
One of the biggest highlights for Baltimore has been Ubaldo Jimenez, who's 3-2 with a 2.41 ERA and 1.01 WHIP through 33 and 2/3 innings of work so far. He shut down the Blue Jays in his latest start, holding them to six hits and two runs while striking out nine over seven innings. Jimenez now owns a 32:12 K:BB ratio on the year.
Diving deeper, the right-hander has been lights out at home so far, going 3-0 with a 0.86 ERA (and a ridiculous 23:4 K:BB ratio) in three starts. He's clearly feeling very comfortable when pitching in his own ballpark, and he'll look to keep it going against Mike Trout and company tonight.
Los Angeles Angels (Shoemaker)
The Angels have been holding their own and will come into tonight playing some of their best baseball of the young season. They've won four straight games and have gone 7-2 over their last nine, which puts their overall record at 18-17. Their offense may not be finding its groove, but their pitching has really stepped up as the driving force to their recent success.
However, Matt Shoemaker hasn't been getting it done for Los Angeles, at least up until this point in the 2015 season. He's 2-3 with a 6.61 ERA and 1.34 WHIP over his first six assignments, which certainly doesn't bode well for this showdown with the Orioles in what's typically thought of as a hitters' park. The 28-year-old has allowed three or more earned runs in all of his starts thus far, and that's a streak that's likely to continue versus a loaded Orioles lineup.
The good news is that we believe Shoemaker will figure it out sooner or later, as he was terrific for the Angels in 2014, going 16-4 with a 3.04 ERA. Granted, most of those good numbers came when he was at home (2.10 ERA), but Los Angeles has to be thinking that Shoemaker will be able to find his touch again in the near future. Will things start turning around tonight?
Whenever we don't have full faith in either two starting pitchers, we tend to gravitate towards the OVER with our MLB picks, and that's exactly what we plan to do tonight..
Jimenez has clearly been pitching better than Shoemaker this season, but we've seen over the years that he's prone to meltdowns, and the Angels have some big-time power in the form of Trout, Pujols and Calhoun that can do some damage. However, we like the OVER more because of Shoemaker's struggles. He's had a very difficult time this season and now has to come to terms with a very powerful Baltimore lineup, one that will be itching to get things going after getting shut down yesterday.
So, with our sports picks, we're liking plenty of runs to be scored, mostly on the Orioles' side. Back the OVER.
MLB Pick: OVER 9